Freeway Accidents at Night

SH logo photo w grayHow to avoid a huge freeway driving risk at night in America. From 2AM to 4AM when the bars close freeway driving becomes extremely risky. The risk is being hit, head on at high speed by a car driving the wrong way with it’s lights out.

This is why.  Drunk drivers, disoriented and confused, sometimes drive down an off ramp to access the freeway. If they wish to go slowly they will drive in what seems to them to be the inside slow lane but is actually the far left, fastest lane. If they want to drive fast, they will drive in what seems to them to be the outside fast lane but is in actuality our inside slow lane where they drive fast and with lights out. Therefore, the only safe place to drive on the freeway at night is the center lane. Several years ago, in Oregon-Washington there were eleven huge, horrific accidents caused by this with twenty two fatalities in one year. Now, driving the freeways at night in the Pacific Northwest the outside lanes are pretty much empty, everyone, trucks and cars alike use the center lane. There is a fifty-cent fix.  Install road spikes at the top of freeway exit ramps. This will quickly flatten all tires on a car driving over them.  If emergency vehicles need to access it they can have a switch to disable the spikes.

In England, it’s taboo to drive drunk and taboo is a massive control of behavior.  There is no longer anything taboo in America.

The safest time to drive freeways is from 6-8AM, 2-4PM, 6-8PM and 10PM-midnight. These cover the going to work, leaving work hours for Police and Health Care shift workers.  Diving to Seattle some time ago, I stopped at a truck accident and everyone else who stopped was part of code teams from various hospitals.  It was 4 in the afternoon.

End Hotflashes

Hot flashes today are nasty, worse than in our grandmother’s day, because we are losing the vitamins and minerals essential to modify them.

This trick works. Absolutely.

Hot flashes begin at the age your mother and grandmother were when theirs began.  Usually in the mid fifties.  And they can make you crazy.  The body blistering hot, covered with sweat and then, in the next minute, wet and freezing cold.  Not once a day.  In the beginning maybe 50, 60 times a day and then during the night. Forever.

Low Calcium also causes those massive leg cramps at night.  They also happen during pregnancy when calcium is depleted by nourishing the baby’s growth.

The solution is replacing Calcium, Magnesium and Vitamin D, materials we lose through age and living in this modern world, . The normal, routine dose is 1,000 mg  Calcium, (Magnesium and Vitamin D are included in correct balance) and 400 Units of Vitamin E every day.

Vitamin D is essential for metabolism of Calcium and it’s lost through chelation from exposure to flourescent lights and it’s absorbtion from sunlight is blocked by Mineral Oil based lotions. on the skin.  (Working twelve-hour shifts, five in a row with fragile Calcium and under flourescent lights, I’d have bad leg cramps and exhausting hot flashes and that was a clue.  I began researching.)  It takes almost a half gallon of milk a day to gain enough Calcium.

Magnesium is the web, the framework if you will, and Calcium is the material that fills the web to form healthy teeth and bones.

Some forms of Calcium are indigestible, Calcium carbonate is chalk and not metabolized. Calcium Citrate is the most easily digestible and is from citrus fruit. CalAbsorb contains Magnesium and Vit. D in the correct balance, is easily digestible and tastes good.  No big tablets, it’s a powder to mix with water or juice.  You can Google to find sales.  Country Life brand Calcium Citrate in capsule form is often on sale in health food stores and internet.

Calcium and Vitamin E have levels so it may take a few days to see results. You will know when your level is reached when the hot flashes are extremely mild and, in some cases, when there is a bit of pale pink spotting every 28 days. Hot flashes never really end, but this routine will make them so mild you’ll not notice them.

If in treatment for cancer, please ask your doctor if you should take these supplements.  

Screen shot 2015-01-12 at 7.39.44 AM

Clothes Wet and Smelling Musty?

SH logo photo w grayClothes in the washer wet and musty after forgetting for a week?

Everything ruined?  No way. This fixes it perfectly…                          



  • Pour at least a quart of white vinegar into the soap dispenser of the washer. Add a very small amount of laundry soap, no more than a spoonful.  (any more and the vinegar will make huge foam that leaks out of the washer.) Soaps today are all surfactants and increase surface tension of water, allowing for the top surface of cloth to release anything caught in it.  Turn washer on for a few minutes to mix soap, vinegar, water and cloth and then stop the washer.  Let it soak for at least an hour.
  • Finish this wash cycle.
  • Now add the normal amount of laundry soap and run the same laundry through a normal complete wash cycle and it’s fixed.
  • Smells wonderful and the musty smell is gone forever.

Stay Warm at Night

Staying warm is a matter of heated air (heated by the body) contained in a space surrounding the body. When blankets lay on a bed undisturbed for days, they loose all of the air between them and there is nothing for the body to heat.  After crawling into bed at night, put an air layer back into each space between the blankets and don’t forget to do it for your children also.

Beginning with the first blanket, just flap it, (lift and let it fall back down.) capturing air, then do the same with the next blanket until they are all flapped.  When layering blankets, put the down comforter near the top and as a barrier of heat loss by conduction, cover everything with a thin Polar Fleece blanket.

Body heat is captured by the kind of covering.  Fur is warmest because there are thousands of tiny air pockets, (hair is the perfect example, your head stays warm at night).   Polar bears walk on ice because the bottom of their paws are covered with fur. Wool has little barbs on the fiber that capture air.  Alpaca is not wool, it’s actually fur. Feathers capture air in the same way and the down in comforters is the fluffy little under feathers of ducks and geese.

A modern fabric that’s as warm as fur is Polar Fleece… it’s made from recycled plastics and has the added warmth of a heat loss barrier.

Mattress pads of wool, sheepskin or feathers also retain body heat and add a barrier to conduction heat loss.

Camping and survival gear includes a foil sheet.  Wrapping in this locks body heat into the spaces and, with little cost,  prevents heat loss by evaporation and convection.

Get Rid of Crows, Squirrels and Maybe Deer.

There are few solutions to discouraging crows and critters from city gardens but frightening them is easy, non-toxic and always  works.  They are all afraid of fire.

Crows will usually spend only one day in a tree and then move to another unless they are nesting and have eggs.  They travel and nest in flocks, often huge.  They become territorial and bold, attacking  cats, dogs and sometimes people.

Twisted Mylar ribbon, when hung from a high point and allowed to hang freely, will move as flames in a fire, warding off crows and squirrels but not the little songbirds.  Crows immediately silence and within minutes they leave your trees. They will move into trees nearby and out of sight of your ribbons so when making  Mylar twists, make extra and pass them out to your neighbors.

Only the twisted loops of red and silver, in the sun and moving, completely mimic flames and are the best.  Untwisted streamers need a strong wind to move them about and do not look like fire.  Twisting  the tape provides loops at the bottom that catch wind like a sail making them move with only a slight breeze.

The plain silver are holographic and when caught in the sun, reflect with thousands of prisms and changing colors.  While this does not mimic flame, holographic images confuse animals and apparently crows also.

Hanging these in larger clumps may also ward off deer and hopefully local  raccoons.

To look like fire, the Mylar must be twisted.  Cut a piece as long as your arms will reach or less.  Twist it about 5 times (3 for shorter lengths) and join the 2 ends.  Now twist again several times and again join the ends. Staple the ends together and tie  a string tightly around the stapled end to hang.  

If the crows return it will be brief and only because there is not enough wind to move the Mylar. They leave when the hanging begins to move again.

The red and silver Mylar ribbon, called “Bird B Gone Flash Tape” is available at Home Depot and Amazon,

Stop a Sinus Headache

Sinuses are cavities in the face with holes that drain them.  Headaches happen because the holes get plugged or swollen shut and fluid builds up inside, pressing on  the nerves.  The pair of sinuses that cause headaches are in the cheekbones and there’s a way to open these holes that have been closed by swelling.

Privine is an over the counter nose drop that’s been around for a long time and it instantly reduces swelling..  They’re the only drops that work and hard to find.  Amazon has them also.  (Nose sprays don’t work for this trick.)

Open your sinuses:

  • Lay on the bed with your head slightly tilted back over the edge and put one drop into each nostril.  Wait a few minutes.
  • Now, still tipped back,  turn the head slightly to one side and put another drop into the nostril on that side.  Wait again. Sometimes you can feel a tiny pop as the sinus tract opens.
  • Repeat this with the other side.
  • Sit up and you can feel the secretions running down the back of your throat.

Thanks to the brilliant doctor who taught me this trick so long ago.

Clues to How the Family is Doing

Some tricks to tell what’s going on behind the scenes in your family.

There is an entire subtext evolving behind the scenes in families with children… how they are interacting together, what they think of their parents, how it’s going with neighbors and friends and then there is school.  For much of it you have no way of knowing but there are clues.

  • DRAWINGS:  Pencil and paper will give you an amazing glimpse into your child’s life, worries and solvable problems. When they are still in the stick figure drawing mode, ask them to draw their family, to “draw you and Billy”, draw themselves with someone they like a lot, someone they don’t like a lot and the playground at school. Family drawings can be a mom with no ears which means she does not listen, the dad with a huge round mouth means he shouts, one sibling bigger than mom or dad means he’s a bully.  Drawings showing the child drawing as very small means he sees himself as powerless in his family, drawing a parent without arms means he gets no hugs.  When my children were young, I’d have them make these drawings every few months, snatch them up and seriously begin working on the problems.  One of my children, an extremely talented artist in adult life, drew me (a single parent with 4 little children.) with a smile on my face and tears running down my cheeks.
  • PHOTOGRAPHS:  There has been much written about reading faces and it’s deadly accurate stuff.  Choose a picture showing a smile for example.  Take 2 white pieces of paper (this gives no distraction) and cover one half of the face, then the other.  What seems to be a smile can become a grimace! The face may be smiling but the eyes are crying!  Then cover everything but one eye, then the other, then both eyes, then the mouth. As you do this, give one word to the emotion you are seeing in that one eye.  fear, worry, imp…  this is how the child is feeling generally.  It may also reflect how he’s feeling about the photographer.  Information from posed photos is somewhat different than from snapshots.  It’s very interesting to do this with old posed photos where the photographer was busy setting the camera.  The subject would hold the pose and begin to adjust it to be what he considered his ‘best look’  and fatigue or boredom would degenerate his pose to reflect the reality of his personality.Then there are those photos of the married couple, each leaning away from each other.  Remember, there were probably other photos in the series but this was the one chosen!  In group photos, watch if someone is consistently tilting the head away or leaning away from another.
  • THE MIRROR:  If you want to know how someone felt with a certain expression in a photograph or in conversation, go to the mirror and arrange your face in the same way.  Then hold that pose a minute.  Your body will feel what that person was feeling.  Arrange your face with a frown, a straight across mouth and a straight head for example.  you feel one way. Then keeping the same expression, cock your head and you feel another way.  Anther good exercise is to watch a talk show with the sound off and you will be seeing something very different than with the sound on.

Holding and Carrying the Baby

First time parents are afraid to touch the tiny baby and handle him stiffly but there’s a way to fix that. Before a feeding, sit with your partner, cross legged on the bed and practice handing the baby back and forth, putting him up to the shoulder, different feeding positions and practice the football hold. (Holding his head in your hand, his back along your forearm, legs on either side of your elbow.  This allows you full control, he can see your face and you can clamp his leg against your body for a more secure carry.)

About sling carriers… with a one piece cloth sling carrier,  gravity forces the newborn down into a deep curve at the bottom, bending his head so the chin is tight against his chest.  This can obstruct, clamp-off the airway.

Important in an infant carrier is stability, supporting the head and exposing the face to air. The perfect front or back carrier and one that keeps the newborn’s chin up and carries  growing children easily is the Boba,  (formerly SleepyWrap). Their page of pictures is very exciting. Almost makes you want to have another baby!


Thin Hair

Whenever I’d meet a patient with thick, wonderful hair I’d ask her what she did to keep it that way and get the same answers… brush with a wire brush and take Cod Liver Oil, (the great majority of these women were European).

The wire brush stimulates the scalp, increases blood flow to it and feels great. It should have smooth rounded tips, not one with the tips attached so that the hair catches in it. Brookstone had the perfect brush but it seems to be gone.

The Cod Liver oil must be cold water cod which is only Norwegian Cod Liver oil. It comes in capsules and is available everywhere.

And then, it seems we are lacking in some minerals needed to keep hair from falling out.

A story:

  • For 2 years I commuted to LA every week and when in LA, my hair was not falling out. Returning to Portland, every morning’s lost hair was alarming. The most important difference was that in LA, I drank only bottled water. It seemed that it wasn’t just bottled water but specifically  Arowhead water that stopped the hair loss and grew lovely thick, long hair.  (Only the water from Arowhead California in the San Bernardino Mountains grows hair, and you can tell it because the taste is a bit flat.  The other source is sold in Washington State and Canada and this water tastes sweet.)

Stress will make hair fall out, so one worries about becoming bald which adds to the stress.  Bad hair loss in women presents a dilemma, should you shampoo often or not.  The answer is yes. Failing to keep the scalp free of dandruff plaques will smother hair follicles and prevent new growth.

Then there is post-partum hair loss.  Dreaded.  It’s hormonal and happens at three months and three weeks after birth of a child. Don’t worry, it grows back.

Heavy Legs

The cause and cure for a common cause of heavy legs.

When sitting for long periods in clothing that makes a tight band at the bend of the hip /leg, the lymphatic system stops working correctly. When walking, calf muscles contract and relax, acting  as a pump  pushing the lymph fluids back up.  This is absent when sitting for long periods in sedentary jobs such as bus drivers, pilots, desk jobs etc.  Add to that tight pants which block the lymph return entirely and once well-shaped legs become thick, heavy and shapeless.  This is not the still shapely leg of the cellulite problem, it’s an all-over heaviness with thick ankles.

There is a test for it…   Unlike cellulite, lymphedema has a characteristic called pitting.  To test for it, push on a spot and if it indents and remains indented for some seconds it’s lymphedema.

When women began to work as bus drivers in Portland, they were issued uniforms of heavy material with a narrow cut to the leg.

These women began to experience sudden, disproportionate leg heaviness, not common to their genetics.

So the bus company tried a looser, thinner material in the uniform pants style and the leg heaviness vanished.

Don't Want to Move?

Tricks to change a depressing, forced move to a nice adventure.  It’s magic.

  • Get a box and go around your house, selecting your most precious things… photographs, things the children made that you want to save forever, special gifts, letters, your Gratitude Journal, a vase and pack them into the box.  Take that box to the new home.  Instantly your heart leaves the old and bonds with the new.  Arrange them in the new house, bring a flower for the vase and replace it with a new one every time you go to the new home.  This is from an elegant and wise Feng Shui book, Wind and Water.

Feeling like your new home is not yours?  Another fix, more magic.

  • My daughters visited for my birthday.  The day arrived and the pilot among them asked if I wanted to fly to Seattle and hang out for the day.  I said that what I wanted to do is clean house. They looked at each other, grinned and said:  “ALL RIGHT !!” Blinds went up, doors opened, music on loud (Aretha of course), cleaning equipment out and we cleaned, danced, sang, ate and laughed together.  Major Fall housecleaning. Here is the magic part… the house now had sweet memories of family, our memories.  We as a family imprinted it.  No longer was it foreign and temporary.  Now it was home and precious.

Clean Brushes. No Turpentine

The oil of oranges lifts old hardened paint with no damage to what’s underneath.  Brushes left for months can be restored to workable again, soft and pliable.

Orange oil is in only one product.  Fantastic, Orange Action.  It smells like oranges, leaves no film, removes paint from fine hardwood floors, window casings, and probably from many other hard surfaces.  It replaces turpentine and is certainly safe to the environment.

Fantastic Orange is sold at Home Depot for sure.  Grocery store shelves are lined with orange colored cleaners in spray bottles but none of them contain orange oils.  Only Fantastic by S.C. Johnson.

Bringing Baby Home

When the second child came home, we presented the first with a red bike at the same time.  (but then, isn’t the first child always given ‘things’).

When the third child came home, it was a lovely spring day and the 2 year old was sitting in her red wagon, sticky and covered with sand.  I said:  “Here’s your baby, Jessica.”, carried the sleeping baby to her and put it in her lap.  She looked at it and looked and then the baby opened her eyes, stretched and yawned.  Jessica’s eyes got huge and she covered her baby with kisses, big, wet, sandy kisses.

Instant bonding.

A ‘How Are We Doing’ Trick

Most of us have ‘the ox’ by the tail, flapping around behind,  just following where the last event leads.  Life goes on day by day outside of our control, ruled by fears and shoulds which is dangerous to goals.  It doesn’t have to be that way.

I know a very successful man who each year, stays in a motel room at the beach, alone for 4 days with a purpose.  He is there to review the past year and brings any materials he may need, bank statements, business materials, letters, photographs.  Anything and everything.

Then, one part at a time, he reviews every facet of his life to identify problems and set new goals.

  • Relationships
  • How is his family doing
  • Friendships
  • Money
  • Parenting
  • The children
  • The marriage
  • The business
  • The job
  • His happiness
  • Health
  • His food trip
  • Vacations and free time

… everything separately, one at a time until satisfied and then he makes goals for each part for the next year.

This couple went through a long and very stressful NICU experience and should have become one of the 97% divorce rate NICU statistics.  Not only are they married, they are like newlyweds after 20 years!

Some Arguing Tricks

Have an off-site Partner Meeting with your mate once a month to discuss how it’s going, how each child is doing, what you would like to change and to make new goals.  Keys to success …

  • Prepare for the meeting.  Make a list and notes.
  • Stay positive and avoid anger.
  • Go with the foundation belief that everything is just a mechanical problem, everyone is good and everything is fixable.
  • Meet in a restaurant with booths for private conversation.
  • Mom can’t cry.
  • Dad can’t shout.
  • The conversation should be about circumstances and not about each other (ad hominum)
  • Have no alcohol before and only coffee or tea during the meeting.  Eating is too complicated and distracting  and may cause stomach ache.  This is a serious meeting.
  • Define the problem.  Devise and problem solve solutions.   Make a plan and a secret signal between you to remind each other of your new goals.

A plan of this sort reduces daily argument.  One tends to save an issue for Partner Meeting and add more thoughts about it, calm thoughts, problem solving thoughts throughout the month.

Ignoring parenting problems is embedding the consequences forever and probably for generations.

What you accept, you teach.

Vacation. Leave the Children at Home Trick

A friend with six young children invented this.  Leave the children at home, it it’s a large gang of them maybe leave them with two adults.  Children younger than maybe 7 would not remember the vacation anyway.

Then, have a vacation in your own city.  Experience your city as a tourist.  No quick stolen minutes together.  A lavish block of time, leisurely time to refresh yourselves and reduce stress.

This leaves you 20 minutes away in case of emergency and gives peace of mind and an intimate several day vacation together.

Photograph Flowers. No Camera

One does not need a camera to photograph flowers.  Gently put the flower on a flatbed scanner. and scan it with the lid up.  In a fairly dark room the background will be black.  In a bright room, the background will be medium gray.  Scanner photos have such intense light that the edges of the flower seem to have light wrapped around them and the color is intense.  Beautiful effects one can’t get with a camera.

It’s difficult to shoot red flowers with a camera because the color is so saturated it blows.  The large red flower below is an aging Hollyhock done on the scanner and the yellow dots are dripping pollen.

The red orchid with gray background was shot with a tented piece of white paper over the top.

Leaves like this Geranium can have an almost 3D effect.   With the zinnia one can get interesting effects.