About admin

Hi, my name is Owen Staples. Thank you for visiting my website! I am a Wellness activist, who adores the natural world (naturalist) with an emphasis on plants, background in horticulture with the natural world outlook, (botanist.) I am one who actually reads plant encyclopedias in libraries on my leisure time! Early in my research, when I realized that taking care of my own health, is also helping to heal the earth, I was absolutely fascinated. I have invested a lot of time and energy into education from this standpoint. I work at a small specialty store that services and sells tropical plants. I have a detailed background with mental health. I teach for NAMI, Utah , B.R.I.D.G.E.S courses. My own approach to wellness emphasizes the need for time outside, the connection between the spirit, mind and body, the importance of the nourishment, nurture and care of each, and the importance of knowing oneself as an individual. I share this that I have learned with others also. Asserting one's needs, and filling one's glass are some fundamentals of what I teach. I am a naturalist, wellness activist, plant guy. I have a background in horticulture. I have found that botany and horticulture and the two complement one another very nicely. I emphasize both indoor well-being and time outside, plant-based nutrition, balance, and asserting one's needs as an effective route to wellness. Current interests include: Xeriscaping, interior-scaping, bio-active substrate in terrariums, nature's methods of correcting imbalances, and wild, edible plants. I enjoy observing weather, trees, insects, birds, fish, and reptiles in nature, and as seen throughout the globe. I also enjoy music, Chess, Medieval history, (particularly the almost unknown pursuit of the study of plants and herbs of the time,) laughter and life. I live in Utah. Thank you for reading.

Gamechangers Film

Greetings,

If you haven’t yet seen the Gamechangers documentary about plant-based athletes, I highly recommend that you watch it on Netflix etc. The film makes some excellent points not only about human health and nutrition, but men’s health, environmental concerns and the environmental benefits of eating less meat and more plant-based.

One of the main points I took from the film is that while these top athletes are extreme examples, men and women breaking records, and setting new standards in cycling, martial arts, power lifting, hiking and football are incredible, anyone adopting a plant-based diet can excel to new heights in their own lives. You don’t have to set world records of lifting 1,224 lbs etc.,(although Kudos to Patrick, was it(?) in the film who did this)!

Eating plant-based, even if not a strict vegan will help you to climb to new heights in your own life.

I could go on and elaborate about my favorite parts of the film, etc and all the parts that stood out to me, (there were many), but I won’t bore you with all that. I’ll let you watch the film for yourself. I highly recommend it, life and world changing food (literally) for thought without a doubt.

Define extreme right? It’s not easy is it. It’s like trying to define normal in a very abnormal world. When I bump into people I know and they ask about the latest in my life, I tell them I’m working nights and taking 18 credits at university this semester, their reply is almost always “you’re crazy.” Well, in their sense of the word in that context, I won’t argue, and I can’t say that I’d recommend 18 credits, and definitely not being this busy for long periods of time. It is a lot at once, but worth it. However, on the other side of that, maybe I’m just a seasoned plant-baser…

If you’re new to this blog, the very foundation of The Wellness Diaries stems from the first book The Wellness Diaries is overcoming what was previously impossible. It is a memoir in which I tell my own part of the story about this and I say that you can do it too, finding your dreams and aspiring to your own new heights, whatever these may be is rewarding, life-giving and fun too. Seems like that was the very message of the film; eat less meat and more vegetables, whole grains, etc. This is the correct diet for humans. Likewise you can climb to new heights, live longer, better, higher and fuller than you ever imagined.

So, with this current schedule, yes I may look hammered some days. It’s not my shop, and I am allowed those hammered-looking days. Thank you to all of you who have hung with me in and out of that. I hope you can hang with me a bit longer and we’ll have some more fun and I will be able to write more often than I have been the past while. Hang tight with me and enjoy the ride. 🙂

After all that, haha enjoy the film!
-Owen

Bernie’s Bird

You can’t really complain unless you are doing something to bring about the change.

I submit that Bernie Sanders is a key first step to facilitate this change.

As a health educator with emphasis on the environment, prevention and wellness, I can see that a fresh perspective and approach is needed. Like it or not, making change for human health and the environment is going to involve voting and government. I know what you’re thinking “Yuck” and I don’t blame you. But to turn a yacht 180 degrees is going to take someone who knows the ins and outs of turning yachts.

While you and I can volunteer, donate, consciously eat, breathe, drive and live, which does help, it is not enough by itself.
The current problems are a big, wiry, entangled, complicated mess and it’s going to take legislation, regulation and leaders with vision to at least start things in the right direction.

I couldn’t believe it when I found out the #1 cause for bankruptcy in America is medical debt(Sultz&Young,2018, 9th ed.). What about single parents with no insurance? This is why something like their child’s ear infection can and does equate to bankruptcy.

Not only do the birds choose him, (see this video): Bernie’s bird but his policies are spot on also. Bernie can see clearly and is not in denial.

Why… Do. Birds?? (Bernie Sanders Remix) from Nick Dunn on Vimeo.

Bernie’s policies would shape and change a few key areas:
1) Healthcare for all, using a single payer system, similar (or rolled in with) Medicare.
2) Fair living wage. Sanders would place the minimum wage at $15 per hour.
3) Getting special interests and big money (lobbyists) out of government.
4) Big corporations will be forced to pay fair taxes instead of hiding off-shore, moving to other countries, and other ways of dodging taxes.
5) Climate change. Sanders will address climate change, and the USA will be the world leader in this effort.
6) Make the wealthiest 1% pay fair taxes instead of pillaging the middle class to further enrich themselves.
7) These will improve the quality of life for many reducing stress, mental illness, crime and poverty.

Vote (both at the ballot and with your daily spending of money). Donate. Donate to Bernie Volunteer. Live consciously. Be willing to take steps in bringing the change you want to see.

Owen

A Sociologist’s Perspective

Greetings,

Understanding world problems is a step toward solving them. I highly recommend the course “Social Problems;” it is very eye-opening. Consulting sociologists in conducting the business of humanity is common sense, but unfortunately this is not so common(Eitzen, D.S., Zinn, B.M., Smith, K.E.,2014.).

Informing yourself is a good practice. Here is an excellent blog: Any Good Thing; A Sociologist’s Perspective

Toward positive change and awareness we go. Remember that “perma-optimism” is at some point a form of denial and complacency. Until humanity reaches that happy and peaceful state, there is plenty to do. Baby steps, and sometimes giant leaps. Neither is the answer to pass the buck and buy into the illusion that you are powerless. Bring the change you wish to see.

Owen

References
(Eitzen, D.S., Zinn, B.M., Smith, K.E.(2014). Social problems, 13th ed.

Beneficial Desert Creatures

Greetings,

Here is to Utah’s only native species of salamander! This group of tiger salamanders was a rare find in the yard and I was delighted to stumble across them. I was glad that the people I was working with promised to watch out for them and help them sustain their moisture and cool temps (in a desert they need all the help they can get) as they water the trees. Remember that all creatures have a place. These guys are beneficial to people because they help to control harmful insects naturally; so be sure to provide a cool and moist retreat for them if you notice some in your area. These were found in a small moist burrow caused by slow and steady drip from the hose.

While you can only see his tail and back, this is a lizard from the area that is also beneficial because it eats lots of locusts!

Thought of the Month

Well it’s a figure of speech. But if it were a quantitative literacy problem it would look like this:

Education

X 50
___________

Or, if you prefer: Education . 50 = R e a l c h a n g e

Live lightly on the earth today. What does that entail?
There’s where the fun begins for you in getting educated about just that!
Enjoy the journey.
-Owen

“Hmmm, I think I’ll go snag me one of them cookies.”


“Can you read this? Of course you can’t; that’s because it’s written in Finnish.”
The vegan Finnish cookies were a hit. As I said, you simply have to try Terhi’s cookies.

homemadevegan@gmail.com.

I understand that she is working on a other special creations, the health-side vegan cookies: non-GMO, sweetened with stevia etc.

While we’re on the topic of Finland, cookies, vegan cookies that originated in Finland, never forget about this interesting tidbit from the health and wellness standpoint: Finland is right up there with Denmark in terms of being among the happiest people on the planet. There are several studies, articles and documentaries about this. Here is the link to an article from Linkedin a few weeks ago:

Unhappy? Try Moving to Finland

In terms of happy people, the Scandanavian countries have some really good things going, from which we can all learn and strive to emulate.

Here’s to a full glass and happy people and planet.

Cheers from here,

Owen

Vegan Finnish Cookies!

Hi Everyone,

With that, be sure to try some vegan cookies from Finland!
When I talk to people about eating well, plant-based diets, veganism etc I’m always enthusiastic to tell them about Terhi, my Mormon vegan friend from Finland. Terhi is one whose entire family (husband and three teens) eat plant-based, (vegan in fact).

You just have to try her cookies. Even the packaging of the cookies sports the philosophy of reduce, reuse and recycle.

Living in the Salt Lake valley, you can contact her about homemade vegan cookies here:

Homemadevegan@gmaildotcom

Thank you for reading,
Owen

The Rest of ‘eem

As promised, here is the orchid photo after the new blossom. You know it’s that time of year later winter into spring. Sun, snow, rain all in a day.
Enjoy, hereux Vendredi, and have a fantastic weekend!

Before the blossom:

After:

PS, nevermind the dog hair, but I couldn’t resist adding this photo of a spider I saw in my house. What did I do with it you ask. The answer is…

of course not! It was too cold outside; 🙂 so who knows where he is now, (yes, I do believe it is a male).