Category: Environmental Solutions

Book Review | “Natural Color: Vibrant Plant Dye projects for your home & wardrobe” by Sasha Duerr #BloggingForBooks

Posted Thursday, 27 April, 2017 by jorielov , , , , , 0 Comments

Fiber Art Book Review badge created by Jorie in Canva using Unsplash.com photography (Creative Commons Zero).

Acquired Book By: I decided to join the “Blogging for Books” programme (on 9th July, 2014) which is a book for review programme created by the Crown Publishing Group. As a book blogger you are offered books in exchange for an honest review on your book blog as well as the ability to reach new readers when you cross-post your review to the Blogging for Books website. The benefit for the blogger is exposure as a reviewer as they put direct links back to your blog post on the book you select to review as well as your homepage.

I received a complimentary copy of “Natural Color” direct from the publisher Watson-Guptill (an imprint of Crown Publishers), in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

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Why I wanted to review a book about Natural Dyes:

As I have intermittently tweeted on Twitter and mentioned off-handedly on my blog, I am a knitty girl at heart who loves creating projects out of the stitches she casts onto her bamboo needles! The afterglow of feeling the Zen of creativity by knitting is wondrous, too! I feel renewed somehow by the method of focusing on stitches and the throwing of yarn one inch at a time whilst creating this wholly new ‘something’ out of what as once a simple hank or skein of yarn!

I took up knitting alongside my Mum, as we were seeking a new Mum & daughter hobby we could pursue together that was a bit easier on the budget than rubberstamp art & mixed media collage; inasmuch as saving on long distance commute times, as the former only had shoppes which were so far afield from our local region, you had to nearly take a TARDIS just to arrive home in time! Laughs. No seriously! We felt it was time to re-direct our time and creative hearts – so whilst I was saying ‘good-bye’ to my twenties we discovered we both were itching to take up knitting!

Mum was returning to the craft after *forty!* plus years absent from it’s yarny blissitude and I, was the dyslexic whose previously failed attempt to learn how to properly cast-on was not going to blind her to the prospect of finding a teacher *somewhere!* who could get her to master the long lost art by combining two styles of knitting to formulate her own hybrid style! The way I approach knitting is AmeriBritish inasmuch as my personal writing voice reflects the unique combination of bi-continental influences!

When we first started to notice we were ‘catching-on’ to knitting together with a fierce passion, we started to dream a bit about what we could do in the future with our ‘newfound’ love and skill set! Mum was re-encouraging herself to contemplate picking up crochet on the side; whereas I decided that would muddle knitting for me if I attempted it. (too confusing to keep it all separate!) Whilst I started leaning towards natural dyes, more complicated patterns (ie. my heart is set on learning Fair Isle!) and potentially learning how to spin roving.We started to contemplate how to move forward in our journey with fiber arts, each finding our own pathways to walk! Some of what we want to do is together and a few times we’ll divert and take separate paths!

The beauty for us both, is finding a green and natural way to craft! I developed several allergies in childhood and as an adult, I live as green as I can by using alternative household products and by seeking out arts and craft projects which do not upset my allergy triggers by the toxicity of products which tend to flood the market. This is one reason why we love using Natural Yarns (except for the synthetics we sometimes receive as Charity Knitters; such as Acrylic); and by extension, a natural way to dye our own yarn would be quite ideal! Hence why I was so wicked excitement when I first saw this book come up for review! Imagining how we could take our love of this craft one step further and find ways to ‘create our own fiber colour palette’ naturally would be incredible!

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Posted Thursday, 27 April, 2017 by jorielov in Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Blogging for Books, Book Review (non-blog tour), Eco-Friendly, Education & Learning, Environmental Conscience, Environmental Solutions, Green-Minded Social Awareness, Horticulture, Knitting, Non-Fiction, Old World Arts & Crafts, Sustainability & Ecological Preservation, The Natural World, Upcycle & Recycle Practices

Blog Book Tour | “Reef Libre: An In-Depth Look at Cuban Exceptionalism” by Robert Wintner

Posted Tuesday, 17 November, 2015 by jorielov , , , 1 Comment

Ruminations & Impressions Book Review Banner created by Jorie in Canva. Photo Credit: Unsplash Public Domain Photographer Sergey Zolkin.

Acquired Book By: I was selected to be a part of the blog tour for “Reef Libre” hosted by iRead Book Tours. I received a complimentary copy of the book and DVD (accompaniment to the book) direct from the publisher Taylor Trade Publishing in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Why the oceans have fascinated my mind:

I grew up surrounded by the oceans as my state is one of the Gulf States hugged so close to shoreline we’re perpetually below sea level; a fact that never shied me away from wondering which hurricane season might cause catastrophic destruction; not only to the humans who live within my state but to the ecological habitats who call this area home. There have been many disasters within the Gulf region since I was bourne and unfortunately they were not limited to mother nature. Each time something has happened to cause a disruption in the harmony of the natural world of my state and the surrounding ones, a part of my heart has been full of remorse and grief.

Mankind has not found kindness nor humility in understanding there are limits to what we can effectively do and what we can not undo due to our greed and our progression forward through industry. Too often the progress of mankind is placed first rather than taking into consideration the benefit of living in conjunction with the natural world; in this case, the oceans. The oceans were studied quite widely throughout my school years, but it wasn’t until 7th grade where I truly caught on to the specifics of weather patterns, wave formations, tidal histories and the incredible density of how large our oceans are whilst cross-compared to how much of the oceans have been mapped, researched and understood on even a basic level of insight. It’s truly our greatest ‘unknown’ frontier outside of Space.

I grew up going to the beach as oft as time would allow and part of my appeal of visiting those sandy shores were to feel the connection from the sand under my feet to the humming clarity of the waves. There is something altogether spiritual about walking the beach, acknowledging the shells and connecting to the lifeblood of what the oceans give us per annum. I originally felt I would grow up to be professionally connected to the oceans, as I explored different options from interspecies communications (i.e. dolphins or whales; similar scope to Zeus and Roxanne); dolphin research; Nautical Archaeology; Marine Biology or one of the many sub-fields therein that stimulated a personal curiosity to know more. I even yearned to get my PADI license until I realised that I appreciated being a bit more disconnected from this enveloping world of dark and light; of where the underwater ecology is as reverent as the one on the surface and mimics certain attributes therein.

I found that my greater passion was to become a writer whose stories would be soulfully connected to the ocean and allow me the chance through research to develop more knowledge than what I could have gained if I had selected only one field to pursue. I appreciate the freedom being a writer and photographer can yield, but also, it’s finding a way to give credence to an ecological living system that so many of this world take for granted. If non-fiction releases like Reef Libre and my own personal wanderings within fiction can shed a light on the beauty and the case for conservation with preservation forward thinking solutions, I think we have a chance to reset the balance we’ve destroyed.

Blog Book Tour | “Reef Libre: An In-Depth Look at Cuban Exceptionalism” by Robert WintnerReef Libre
Subtitle: Cuba: The Last, Best Reefs in the World. An in-depth look at Cuban Exceptionalism
by Robert Wintner
Source: Publisher via iRead Book Tours

Cuba reefs host apex predators and coral cover at optimal levels. While Cuban reef vitality may be linked to economic default and no shoreline development, no agricultural pesticides or fertilizers and limited human population growth, the Castro regime is aggressively developing its reef potential.

Seas to the south are now 100% shark protected.

Most Cuba travelogues advise “getting off the beaten path,” but Reef Libre examines that path, to see where it might lead as things change. Will Cuba reefs remain protected? Or is this perilous age of natural decline a last chance to see a healthy reef system?

Robert Wintner and the Snorkel Bob Jardines de la Reina Expedition herein provide narrative insight with photos and video. First stop is the baseline: Havana urban density. Down south at Cayo Largo, reef collapse seems imminent with 600 guests changing daily, and the phosphate-laden laundry water flowing directly to the deep blue sea. Will Cuba’s Ministry of Tourism step up with the Jardines de la Reina paradigm? Rising from the Golfo de Ana María, Jardines is a thousand square miles of mangrove estuary, for ages compromised by constant extraction of its biggest predators, taken as food. Protected, it now rises on the world reef stage.

A DVD comes with the book in a paper sleeve glued to the inside cover. Reef Libre, the movie, runs about an hour.

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9781630760731

Genres: Current Events, Digital Photography, Ecology, Marine Biology, Non-Fiction, Oceanography, Science, Travelogue, Wildife & Nature Photography


Published by Taylor Trade Publishing

on 1st February, 2015

Format: Hardcover Edition

Pages: 272

Available Formats: Hardback with the DVD

Published by: Taylor Trade Publishing

An imprint of Rowan & Littlefield (@RLPGBooks) known for their academic publications within the Humanities and Social Sciences. They also focus on Educational publications.

Converse via: #ReefLibre

About Robert Wintner

Robert Wintner

Best known as Snorkel Bob in Hawaii and around the world, Robert Wintner captures Cuba above and below the surface with urgency and hope. As a pioneer in fish portraiture, Wintner demonstrated social structure and etiquette in reef society. Reef Libre goes to political context, in which human folly will squander Cuba’s reefs as well—unless natural values can at last transcend political greed. As pundits joust over who did what to whom and why, Wintner ponders reef prospects in view of political changes.

Robert Wintner has authored many novels and story collections. Reef Libre is his fourth reef commentary with photos and his first overview of survival potential in a political maelstrom. He lives and works in Hawaii, still on the front lines of the campaign to stop the aquarium trade around the world.

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Posted Tuesday, 17 November, 2015 by jorielov in Aquaculture, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Bookish Discussions, Charity & Philanthropy, Climate Change, Conservation, Ecology, Education & Learning, Environmental Activism, Environmental Advocacy, Environmental Conscience, Environmental Science, Environmental Solutions, Indie Author, Life in Another Country, Marine Biology, Nature & Wildlife, Non-Fiction, Oceanography, Preservation, Science, Social Change, Sustainability & Ecological Preservation, The Natural World, Travel Narrative | Memoir, Travel Writing, Travelogue

+Book Review+ Sandra Leesmith’s “Love’s Promises” #sweetromance, #Romance

Posted Monday, 28 July, 2014 by jorielov , , , 2 Comments

Parajunkee Designs

Loves Promises by Sandra Leesmith
Artwork Credit: Lena Goldfinch

 Love’s Promises by Sandra Leesmith

Published By: Amber Press Publishing, March 2014
Official Author Websites: Site | Twitter | Facebook
  Cover Designer Pages: Site | Twitter | Facebook | Pin(terest) Boards
Available Formats: Paperback, Ebook
Page Count: 310

[Previous Releases]

  • “Loves Refuge”+
  • “Loves Miracles”+
  • {note} +part of the same series as Love’s Promises!

Converse via Twitter: #LovesPromises, #ChrisFic,

#cleanromance, & #inspirationalfiction

Genres: Fiction | Inspirational Fiction

Romance | Contemporary

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Acquired Book By: I had originally intended to read “Love’s Promises” for review on the blog tour earlier in the Spring, however, at that point in time the novel was only going to be released in Ebook format rather than print edition. Through my participation on the tour, I received the good news that a print edition was viable and would be put into action. I received a complimentary copy of the book direct from the author Sandra Leesmith, in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Inspired to Read:

I am always keen on reading the books I highlight and spotlight on Jorie Loves A Story, and this novel in particular caught my attention when I was first offered to participate on the original blog tour hosted by Amber Stokes and her Editing Through the Seasons publicity company. I appreciate being what I consider a ‘hybrid reader’ as one who reads both mainstream and inspirational markets for fiction and non-fiction. I talk about this a bit under “My Bookish Life” and hinted about it on the note that proceeded this book review when I explained why posting this took a bit longer than originally expected due health and life reasons occurring at a pace that simply exhausted me. I always aim to feature novels through Guest Author & Book Features that will key into the diverse variety of books I appreciate reading overall.

I was originally going to only focus on books in print, but then I re-considered when I noted that many ebooks I would dearly love to read eventually end up in print editions. This can take anywhere from a few months to a full year or longer depending on the publisher, author, and body of work. I decided to stand firm in being a traditional reader but to yield as a book blogger to highlight books first released into an electronic version that I would one day hope would go into a print run as well. In this way, I am opening my mind to a wider net of authors and stories but remaining true to who I am as a reader and as a blogger at the same time. I am thankful that my path crossed with Ms. Leesmith and with Ms. Stokes, as I might not have stumbled across this particular novel nor the lovely series it is a part of.

My original showcases on Leesmith’s behalf was a heap of joy for me, as it encouraged me to re-examine where the publishing world is currently with a green-minded focus on publishing and printing practices (a bit of an on-going personal research topic of interest) as much as it gave a strong impression on having an open discussion on where writers and readers alike stand on the position of being green-minded and being voracious readers. For me, it confirmed that you can be environmentally conscience and read print books without having to concede to ebooks and ereaders. Notwithstanding of the fact that not all of us can use ereaders nor read ebooks in any format due to our vision and the way in which we process information.

My participation led to a healthy itch to read “Love’s Promises” and I felt blessed that I had the opportunity to tuck inside the story of how a novel went into print format when it was originally only scheduled for one type of release. The further blessing was discovering the other two books in the Love Promises series are already released in print, and are on my ‘next reads’ list of books to acquire!

Book Synopsis:

For Monica Scott, building her late father’s house at Lake Tahoe isn’t an option—it’s a necessary distraction from confusing memories and an uncertain future. But a handsome planner working for the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPA) is keeping Monica from moving forward with the project. Never mind that he’s young and charming with a great sense of humor. No one is going to stop Monica from making her father’s dream—and her own—a reality.

All Greg Linsey wants is for his work to mean something. His job at TRPA gives him the opportunity to fight for the environment he loves and make a difference in his small corner of the world. But with the sophisticated Monica Scott’s arrival, his dedication is tested as never before, especially when Monica turns to his unscrupulous nemesis for assistance. As Greg and Monica’s animosity turns into something far sweeter, can they learn to accept each other’s promises and avoid the growing danger to their lives and hearts?

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Sandra LeesmithAuthor Biography:  SANDRA LEESMITH loves to travel in her RV and explore all of nature’s beauty, discover America’s history, and fellowship with the wonderful people she meets while on the road. She enjoys reading, writing, hiking, swimming, and pickleball. Learn more about Sandra and her books at sandraleesmith.com.

Book Cover Designer Biography: LENA GOLDFINCH writes fantasy and Lena Goldfinchromance for teens and adults. She’s a sucker for a good old-fashioned romance, whether it’s a novel, novella, or short story, young adult or adult, fantasy or realistic, contemporary or historical. Elements of romance, fantasy, and mystery have a way of creeping into her writing, even when she’s writing something light and contemporary like her latest releases, Haunting Joy and Take a Picture. Lena has been a finalist in several national writing contests, including the RWA Golden Heart and ACFW Genesis contests. She lives in a scenic small town in Massachusetts with her husband, two kids, and a very spoiled Black Lab. Learn more about Lena and her books at lenagoldfinch.blogspot.com.

 

Romance, Thirty-somethings, & the Environment:

I shall never discredit the timing of a book in hand nor of the story at the heart of the novel’s message to be consumed at a particular moment in time as this particular one has reached my eyes and mind! I cannot deny that I am a thirty-something myself nor a singleton who oft thinks about her own life, her chosen path, and where the pebbles of her path shall lead her next. Each of us is living a life of worth and it is not always measured in events and incidents that the masses experience but in smaller steps and graces which take us to where we are being led to traverse. I love stories of the heart as much as the human condition, to knit inside the small fragments of time wherein we cross-examine our own hearts, spirits, and desires of will — to understand where we have been as much as where we are going next. I had to nearly chuckle to myself whilst realising a bit of the cheeky humour Leesmith placed inside her two lead characters, as both Monica and Greg are within a farthing of a distance in age from each other, and experiencing the same self-exploration and questions of the heart that neither wants to admit possible.

I think thirty-somethings have a lot of ground to cover in today’s fiction, especially in the Romance side of the ledger. To oft writers focus on someone either in college or thereafter or even settle inside the years of the twenties, but few root out the early years of being twentyten and thirty-something; the decisive age for most singletons either in want of finding someone to walk through life with or to walk alone. It is a unique perspective to give in fiction, as the veins of narrative can go in so many unique and different directions. Whilst in the opening bits of Love’s Promises, what I especially liked is how the path Leesmith chooses to take is not quite predictable nor is it contrite. She breathes a bit of life into the characters and gives them enough realism and free will to keep you in suspense of what their choices will be the further you walk inside their story.

The environment is nearly a third character in the story, as the natural environment is beautifully highlighted as the backdrop and setting for Love’s Promises. I appreciated the care and attention the advocacy and conservation on the Lake Tahoe Basin were given throughout the story, as it illuminates one small fraction of how over building and overusing our natural resources is becoming a larger problem as a whole. There are too many loosely controlled environmental protections on building permits and on maintaining natural habitats. I’ve even witnessed where previously protected land was sold to the highest bidder and commericalised for consumer use; at the determent of the wildlife and ecosystem. There needs to be a better balance between sustaining the ecological habitats already thriving where developers and residents want to intercede on their right to build. I celebrate the small successes such as non-chemical pest control by water sources, walkways and green paths in urban developments that do not deter from the natural ecosystems, and a recognition of local bird and wildlife habitats being protected by watchful observations by local groups working for preservation and conservation of their lands. I commend the research Leesmith knitted into her novel, as she is tackling a very difficult issue and a controversial topic laced with politics on all levels.

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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

  • Go Indie
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Posted Monday, 28 July, 2014 by jorielov in 20th Century, Agnostic (Questioning & Searching or Unsure), Balance of Faith whilst Living, Blogs I Regularly Read, Book Review (non-blog tour), Bookish Discussions, Conservation, Contemporary Romance, Death, Sorrow, and Loss, Domestic Violence, Eco-Friendly, Ecology, Editing Through The Seasons, Environmental Activism, Environmental Advocacy, Environmental Conscience, Environmental Solutions, Fathers and Daughters, Indie Author, Indie Book Trade, Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction, Lake Tahoe, Life of Thirty-Somethings, Life Shift, Modern Day, Mother-Daughter Relationships, Nature & Wildlife, Pacific Crest Trail, Political Narrative & Modern Topics, Preservation, Romance Fiction, Seekerville, Singletons & Commitment, Sustainability & Ecological Preservation, Walking & Hiking Trails, Women's Fiction