Spencer back from Haiti

Spencer arrived back from Haiti alive and well and full of stories. This was the Youth for Human Rights Tour. They met with various Haitian Government and UN agencies. I’ll get him to write his stories so that I can post some here. Hopefully, he’ll also put some these stories on his MySpace page. He has some of his pictures posted at Spencer’s MySpace Page. Find the “pics” link beneath the Picture over on the left. Then you will see the Picture link for the Haiti pictures. I’ve included one here.

He loved the trip and met some really great people. He said there are a lot of wonderful people that really are trying to improve conditions there.

Enjoy the pictures. We’ll get some stories up soon.


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Human Rights

We dropped son Spencer off at the Tampa airport this morning. He’s on his way to Haiti. He will be working with a UN delegation promoting Human Rights. He is going as a representative of the Youth For Human Rights organization. He will be there for a week doing all the photography and video for the program. Spencer was picked from about 20 people for this trip. It is very exciting for him. Haiti is a beautiful country but politically and economically pretty depressed. And it is one of the poorest countries in the Western World. The group is going there because of the many human rights violations. They are doing what they can to help the new government in this respect. Spencer told me that he will be with UN bodyguards the whole time he is there. This is quite a cool project.

Spencer has been making films since he was 11 years old and also taking pictures for the last few. You can see some of his pictures here: Spencer Jones (I hope this link works.)

He will obviously be taking hundreds (if not thousands) of pictures of Haiti and we’ll let you know when they can be viewed online.


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MSG – In Everything?

I had done some research several years ago on MSG and thought I had taken it completely out of my diet. My sister-in-law dug a little deeper in her research and below is her article. Please note that when she speaks of vegetable protein, this also includes soya protein. So, if you think you are getting a product with protein in it, well, read on…

“Weight Loss, Forget About It, Unless You Stop Eating This!
by Willie Jones

I do a lot of research on health and nutrition and nothing makes me madder than the food industry intentionally, without my permission and yours, producing food that causes you and I not only to be addicted to it, but makes us fat! They do this by adding MSG to just about everything we eat!

I admire people like John Erb, who was a research assistant at the University of Ontario and wrote the book, “The Slow Poisoning of America”, as one of the many people blowing the whistle on MSG. The subject of MSG is not new, but not enough attention is being paid to it and the food industry is certainly not going to tell you about it because they are making too much money from it.

MSG is so pervasive in our society that you may not be aware that you are consuming it daily. It is in processed foods, canned, frozen or boxed, restaurants and fast food chains. My husband and I were shocked to find MSG in almost all the vitamin supplements we had. Most consumers are not aware of it because we are being tricked with labeling.

MSG has many aliases. Here is a list of some of the other names for MSG:

– Monosodium glutamate, monopotassium glutamate, glutamic acid

– Anything that says hydrolyzed (such as hydrolyzed vegetable protein)

– Anything that says Autolyzed

– Anything that says natural flavor, or flavors, natural flavoring, flavorings

– Calcium caseinate

– Sodium caseinate

– Yeast extract

– Seasonings

– Soy protein, wheat protein, whey protein, anything fortified protein

– Textured protein

– Carrageenan

– Gelatin

– Soy sauce

– Worcestershire sauce

– Bouillon, pork, chicken, beef

– Barley malt, malt extract, maltodextrin

– Enzymes

– Corn syrup, corn starch, dextrose

– Citric acid

You may be asking how it is possible that MSG can come under so many different names. The FDA has stated that if you use MSG in a product it must be labeled that way. If you use for example: hydrolyzed vegetable protein (which has MSG in it) it must be labeled by its common name and not MSG. This is the loophole the food industry uses to hide the word MSG.

Studies done over the last 30 years on rats have consistently shown that MSG makes them fat. Rats are not naturally fat so it has to be created. The studies done showed up to a 40% increase in appetite in the rats fed with MSG.

It works like this. Your tongue has receptors to detect sugars, carbohydrates, fats and protein, and it is used to determine if actual food is in your mouth. The food industry has figured out that MSG fools the taste receptors into thinking it is going to be receiving protein or sugars etc, so now your pancreas now goes into action releasing insulin to do its job. Within half an hour to an hour you have a blood sugar drop and you want to eat again. So you eat more food with MSG and you continue this circuit over and over again. And don’t forget to check your diet foods, which are usually loaded with MSG.

True weight loss is achieved by the few who have true stamina and will power because for the rest of us, well, the odds are stacked against us. The food industry wants you to buy their food and keep you addicted and keep you gaining weight because now companies can jump on the band wagon and get you buying weight loss pills and prescription drugs. Is there MSG in the diet and prescription pills? The odds are very high that this is the case.

If you have struggled with weight and health issues without success, don’t just give up hope yet. Education is the key. It is up to you to decide what you want to do with this information. For my husband and I, we have given up MSG and we eat organic. I have lost 20 lbs to date and feel great. There are some reputable companies that produce superior products without MSG and pesticides and it is worth seeking them out and supporting their efforts while getting you and your family healthy.

I hope this helps!

Sources: Blaylock, Russell L., M.D. Excitotoxins: The Taste that Kills, Health Press, Santa Fe, NM 87504, 1994. Schwartz, George R., M.D. and Schwartz, Kathleen A. In Bad Taste: The MSG Symptom Complex, Health Press, Santa Fe, NM 87504.

Willie is a researcher and freelance writer whose own health problems prompted her to gain information on health and wellness and share that knowledge with others. She is co-owner of
Clean Body Detox a site that focuses on detox through foot baths and a foot massager.

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PANGEA, The International Cafe

This afternoon I was having a double Expresso in Pangea on Fort Harrison in Clearwater Florida while speaking to Geri, one of the owners. I struck up a conversation with another patron. She mentioned that she’d spent most of her adult life in India. Well, my father lived in India for 30+ years, so I asked her where she’d been. She told me that she’d lived in Vrindavan – the exact same town where my father had lived. Not only that she had visited the hospital where my father had worked. My father Doctor Glyn Jones, was a doctor at that hospital and a member of the Vedanta – a Hindu sect. I had been to Vridavan 20 years ago and it was wonderful hearing about it again from someone who had lived there more recently. Also, interesting were some of the changes occurring within India. She plans on writing a book – hopefully, she does so – I’ll certainly read it. Here you can see a picture that I took – this was just outside the gates of the hospital.

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New Coffee Shop in Clearwater Florida – PANGEA

Check out this great new coffee shop in downtown Clearwater. Reminds me of Queen St West in Toronto. And the coffee is excellent! They are open from 7 am to 2 am so it feels even more like Queen Street. I’ve included one picture but you really have to go there to get the feel of it. It’s just north of Cleveland on Fort Harrison. Check it out:) and give them your feedback – they want to know what the community needs and wants.

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Dr Seuss

A friend of mine sent me this
absolutely great quote from
Dr Seuss:

“Be who you are and
Say what you feel,

because those who
don’t matter
and those
matter don’t mind.”
– Dr Seuss

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Sun Tzu

I love reading Sun Tzu – The Art of War

So many applications to many areas of life. Here’s a great quote:

“Regard your soldiers as your children, and they will follow you into the deepest valleys; look on them as your own beloved sons, and they will stand by you even unto death.”
Chapter 10 – Terrain

Have a great day.

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Brandon Vermont and my Cousin/Aunt Edna Jones

The coolest thing happened yesterday. I do sales calls as one of my jobs and get calls from all over the country. Yesterday I got a call from a woman and I needed to ask her where she was from. She told me Brandon, Vermont. I said that I had a cousin that had lived there – that she had died last year in August. It is a small town, so she asked me her name. I said Edna Jones. “Oh! I loved Edna!!” was her immediate reply. She went on to tell me several stories about how playful Edna was. Edna was about 87 when she died. My new friend told me that she taught exercise classes and did so for the elderly, one of which was Edna. Well, they had a young man there fresh out of college. Both of the women told this young man, very seriously, that Edna’s dog – a miniature pit bull – needed exercise. Well, next class, sure enough, Edna brings in the dog and the young trainer has him on the treadmill – what a hoot!

Well, if you want to see one of the prettiest towns in America, visit this beautiful place. For some reason I didn’t take any photos while I was there. I always thought I’d get back to see Edna. I was there about 3 summers ago and we were having lunch in an outdoor restaurant on the main street. Some of Edna’s elderly lady friends came by and Edna introduced me to them mentioning that I was a photographer. Well, we almost had a whole calendar planned by the end of lunch! (Remember ‘Calendar Girls’?)

Make sure that you visit some of the Galleries when you are in Brandon and ask about Edna Jones.

Have a good one.
– Martin

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Campark Resorts, Niagara

If you are into travelling and have never been to Niagara Falls, check out my sister Gwen’s blog: Campark Resorts. If you do a search to check out other activities, remember it’s Niagara NOT Niagra. Check it out. You may want to wait till Spring – the flowers are unbelievable – but if you can stand the cold, if there’s snow, that’s quite beautiful as well.


– Martin

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Christmas Tree

So, we don’t have snow or cold here(Florida) – so how does one make it feel “Christmasy”? It’s not easy – it kinda sneaks up on you – but – BUT – many people in the area get creative with lights. You can see here that our neighbour has redefined the appearance of a Christmas tree.

Also, go to Facebook.com and add me as friend – you can see a bunch of pics of the kids.

More cool Pictures

Make a better world

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