CLIMATE CHANGE IS A REALITY AND WE NEED YOUR VOTE

Brighter Planet is once again sponsoring our grant proposal on their social network.  Happy Tonics gained 384 VOTES in earlier rounds and we hope to boost VOTES this round from May 1 – 15.  Please log in or sign up to VOTE for Adapt to Climate Change Native Wildflower and Butterfly Habitats in Shell Lake, Wisconsin at http://brighterplanet.com/project_fund_projects/100 

Woodland trail to habitat

Woodland trail to habitat

Yesterday I went for a walk in the woods.  I wanted to check on the Wild Monarch Butterfly Habitat.  The DNR did a nice job in the fall of 2009 cutting down forbs and  cutting popple trees that were becoming invasive. I noticed two azure butterflies (Celastrina argiolus) flitting about with their lavender colored top wings.  This is the second butterfly species I have seen this year.  The first was a fritillary spotted earlier in April, well before it should have been in Wisconsin. We will monitor butterfly species on July 4 as part of the national butterfly count sponsored by North American Butterfly Association.  The public is invited to help us for a small fee of $5.00 to cover materials.  Come for an hour or more, from  10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Fiddlehead fern

Fiddlehead fern

  Seeing that the fiddlehead ferns were ready for picking, I gathered some and brought them home to cook.  They are delicious sautéed in butter with garlic.  While exploring I noticed that common buckthorn (Rhamnus cathartica) is taking over a once native birch tree forest.  This is an invasive species.

Birch polypore mushrooms

Birch polypore mushrooms

The dead birch are now a haven to a birch fungus (Piptoporus betulinus) that breaks down the wood.  This particular polypore is unique in that it lives throughout the year on dead birch trees.  It only lives for up to a year but will continue to stay on the tree in its hardened wooden form.  It is known as the artist conk and the bottom is felt like and can be carved into art.

One of the side effects of climate change is that invasive species move into an area that once was native habitat.  They are hardy and once an invasive species gets a foothold, it is hard to eradicate.

Handmade sign DNR Donation

Handmade sign DNR Donation

  The DNR has been helping us to manage invasive species in the open field butterfly habitat surrounded by woods.

Your VOTE really matters.  It may in fact help fund a book to be published on monitoring species in 2010.

Thank you!

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PLEASE VOTE FOR OUR GRANT PROPOSAL on Brighter Planet

Happy Tonics has been selected again as a candidate for the April 1 – 15 VOTING PERIOD with Brighter Planet.  Our Grant Proposal Native Habitats and Community Gardens in Shell Lake, Wisconsin, needs your VOTE at
http://brighterplanet.com/project_fund_projects/100
We are a nonprofit 501(c)(3) Environmental Education Organization and Public Charity.  Officers and board work for free.
 
 
Please take a minute to REGISTER on BRIGHTER PLANET and VOTE for our Grant Proposal.  Thank you for helping us create a world of beauty for today and the future.  
 
Bees on Coneflower

Native Bumblebees on coneflower

  Our work is dedicated to helping the littlest of species the pollinating butterflies and native bees that need our help.  We grow native habitat and crops to promote biodiversity which pollinators depend upon.

Thank you for VOTING for our Cause at http://brighterplanet.com/project_fund_projects/100
 

Today We Sing Your Praises

Hand Drum Contest – Lac Courte Oreilles (LCO) Convention Center, Hayward, WI.  Happy Tonics will be at LCO Ojiwe Community College on Thursday to present a program on Oneida Culture and Corn.  It is all about saving tribal indigenous crop species from extinction. 

Brighter Planet VOTING PERIOD has ended.  Happy Tonics, Inc. received 234 VOTES for their initiative to adapt to Climate Change.  Happy Tonics, Inc. Officers and Board Members wish to thank each and every one of you for your votes.  Today we heard from Michelle L. Voight, Executive Director, of Tourism Washburn County Tourism Association at www.washburncounty.org  Michelle let us know she VOTED for  adapt to Climate Change Native Habitat and Community Garden in Shell Lake, Wisconsin.

 We are both members of Destination Marketing Organization at http://wisconsinvisitor.com/?113140   Nancy Herman, Yellow River Advertising and Marketing and Greg Vreeland, Wisconsin Great Northern Railroad, are dedicated to letting the public know that we have some great green initiatives to promote Eco tourism and Volunteer Eco vacations in the Great North Woods of Wisconsin.  Check out the train schedule in Spooner at http://www.spoonertrainride.com/  to find some interesting short excursions that include meals and other eco friendly activities like the pumpkin train that goes out to a pumpkin patch in the fall.

Monarch Butterfly Habitat

Monarch Butterfly Habitat, Shell Lake, WI, USA copyright Cindy Dyer

 In the summer, right down the road from Spooner is the Monarch Butterfly Habitat that Happy Tonics implements.  The city owned land is now a Restored Remnant Tallgrass Prairie for many species of butterflies, native bees and dragonflies.  Visitors have even seen ducks, deer and a bear come wandering through the habitat. 

One doesn’t need a lot of land to restore nature back to native habitat.  Native plants are host plants to butterflies and do not require intensive watering.  The plants have very deep roots.  The prairie rose has been known to grow 20 feet down into the soil to tap water.  Can you image lawns doing this?  Why deplete water to maintain a lawn?  Native grasses and wildflowers can do all this with so little in return.   With climate change we need to adapt.  Bless you all for voting and helping to protect Mother Earth. 

Be happy insectamonarca friends where ever you are.

The Good Dream Starts with a VOTE

Hello Insectamonarca friends,

I just watched a video of the Shuar Indians of Ecuador who knew that their world was disappearing when the outer world started to invade the Rainforest.  I lived in the Amazon along the Napo and Misahualli River in the late 1970s.  Please learn more here at http://www.pachamama.org/content/view/262/97/

Copyright Sue Sill

Lady sitting in Guadamala copyright by Sue Sill

  I am asking for your VOTE so that we can adapt to climate change with native habitat and community garden in Shell Lake, WI, USA.  It is not that far away from Ecuador in the dream time.  The Shuar say, “The North needs to change its dream.”  Materialism is causing all kinds of harm to Mother Earth known as “Pachamama” in South America.  We need to start to grow our own local and organic food and protect and plant native habitat for all species be it plant or animals.  Man cannot live without the natural world.

Please Sign Up and Vote for our Grant Proposal with Brighter Planet at http://brighterplanet.com/project_fund_projects/100

I won’t be blogging tomorrow so I am wishing you a Happy Sunday.  Thank you for being part of our dream.

Mary Ellen

Day Ten – Counting Votes for Climate Change Native Habitat Community Gardens in Shell Lake, WI

http://vimeo.com/7327532     Check out Brighter Planent’s short video of a bee and a daisy.

Happy Tonics Environmental Education Intern Tabitha Brown is a student at Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwe Community College.  She took the initiative to email the entire student body with permission from the college staff.  Tabitha is also getting out the word out on her MySpace Blog So what’s up?  She is recruiting for friends and students to Sign Up and Vote for Happy Tonics grant proposal at Brighter Planet for Climate Change Native Habitat and Community Garden in Shell Lake, WI.  We need your votes at http://brighterplanet.com/project_fund_projects/100

Our Morph Your Mind Environmental Education Program teaches about Colony Collapse Disorder and importance of native wildflowers as pollen sources for bees that need our help.   Seeing Beyond Ourselves, we hope you too will help our friends the native plants, bees and butterflies and the crops that feed us.  All these species are experiencing stress because of climate change.  Help us make a difference in our hometown.  We are a sustainable city but to plant gardens and maintain a Restored Remnant Tallgrass Prairie and butterfly meadow, we need funds to do so.  We are grateful to Brighter Planet for this opportunity.

You are voting for species that cannot speak for themselves.  Bless your hearts.

Day Eight – You did it! You got us over the hump with 100 VOTES

And on the Seventh Day They Rested.

What a great weekend. Thank you one and all for voting on our grant proposal at Brighter Planet. Happy Tonics now qualifies for another chance at the brass ring in the future because we got 100 VOTES. The nonprofit realizes that we are up against some pretty stiff competition.  New Orleans is in the lead with their grant proposal.  Winning the Super Bowl Sunday was a wonderful success. Well done Saints. 

Be sure to Sign up and VOTE at Brighter Planet for Climate Change for Native Habitat and Community Garden Shell Lake at http://brighterplanet.com/project_fund_projects/100

Good news!  February 8, the Washburn County Public Property and Land Sales Committee granted Happy Tonics permission to plant a raised bed garden at Friendship Commons, the senior center, in the summer of 2010. 

Libby loves being a butterfly

 Girl Scout Troop Number 4392 (MN, WI Lakes and Pines) will plant, grow and maintain the garden.  Seniors will be partners in this intergenerational activity.  A grant from Leopold Education Project and Pheasants Forever are funding the project.  Happy Tonics believes that all sustainability projects are accomplished from the ground up.  A community that can feed itself is sustainable. 

The garden will be a teaching garden.  We teach through the monarch butterfly who is the canary in the coal mine.  What happens to the butterfly can happen to us.

 Even a little grant is a big thing to a small nonprofit.  We volunteer for Happy Tonics. Won’t you help us spread our wings to teach others to adapt to climate change?

We offer the Morph Your Mind Environmental Education Program.  Our classes, events and two native wildflower and butterfly gardens are nature’s outdoor classrooms where we teach others about the importance of native crops and plants as native host and nectar sources for the monarch butterfly and other pollinators.  The natural landscape supports life.  Monoculture and invasive species are replacing native habitat.  Native habitat is the only habitat can withstands drought conditions and climate change.   

Taking Environmental Education to the Classroom

Thank you for your kindness.

Day Six – PLEASE VOTE for Climate Change Native Habitat…on Brighter Planet

Brighter Planet logo copyright

Please help pump up the votes.  Please Sign up AND VOTE for the Climate Change Native Habitat and Community Garden Shell Lake grant proposal at Brighter Planet at http://brighterplanet.com/project_fund_projects/100

Happy Tonics wants to thank Donna Barnes-Haesemeyer, Mayor of Shell Lake, for her VOTE.  The Mayor and I took part in The Natural Step for Communities – How Cities and Town can Change to Sustainable Practices in 2008.  I am proud to announce that Shell Lake is a sustainable city.

farmers market

Local grown food Famers Market

The mayor has implemented many initiatives to help the city start a Farmers Market, promote community gardens, improve wetlands and increase native habitat.  She is proactive in environmental advocacy work. 

Personally I am proud to live in this small community where so many are trying to protect the lake from invasive species.  We have the cleanest lake in Washburn County and perhaps throughout many areas in Wisconsin.  The Shoreline Protection Committee is reestablishing native habitat at 13 public access areas around the lake. 

cottonwood tree

The campground with aged cottonwood tree and lake

native black-eyed Susan

Native black-eyed Susan at Native Wildflower and Butterfly Garden.

Happy Tonics implemented a Native Wildflower and Butterfly Garden on city land.  Now we are trying to raise funds through Brighter Planet to maintain the habitat and help the community with community gardens.

  Let me tell you way.  Washburn County will shortly be impacted by 8,000 more people who have been taken off the unemployment benefits roll.  This means that food pantries need to gear up to address an ever increasing crisis in food security for citizens.

A community that can feed itself is sustainable.  You are allowed three votes and we are asking for your help.  Please sign up and VOTE for the Climate Change Native Habitat and Community Garden Shell Lake grant proposal at Brighter Planet at http://brighterplanet.com/project_fund_projects/100

Thank you for VOTING and proving you care. 

Quote Source:  Cassie McCrow wrote on Nick Vander Puy’s blog: “The genius of hunter-gatherers is that they must live as a part of nature rather than a manipulator of it – playing by nature’s rules, if you will. Part of that is the exchange – gratitude, relationship and respect (all good energies) for food, clothing and shelter.”

Day Five- HELP US GET 100 VOTES Over Weekend Brighter Planet

We are only 14 VOTES away from 100 VOTES.  I know we can do it with your help.  Please REGISTER AND VOTE for Climate Change Native Habitat and Community Garden Shell Lake at Brighter Planet at http://brighterplanet.com/project_fund_projects/100

monarch hat

Wear your passion and show others you care.

We want to thank Salt of the Earth Press at http://www.saltpress.com/

for voting today.  Be sure to check out our beautiful butterfly art wear created by Lindy Casey, owner of Salt of the Earth Press.

 Lindy was kind enough to create butterfly product designed by artist and Happy Tonics former member Kathy Maas at CafePress.  All sales support Happy Tonics’ Monarch Butterfly Habitat and Morph Your Mind Environmental Education Programs. 

Earth Friendly Water Bottle art by K. Maas

We will campaign over the weekend on the blogs to recruit, recruit, and recruit for your VOTES. Be happy voters where ever you are.

Day Four – Ringing the Bell for Brighter Planet Grant

We’re almost there at 81 VOTES at 9:10 p.m.  Only 19 more VOTES to go till we reach 100.  Yeah Team!  If you are watching the results and have voted once, you are entitled to two more votes.  Each voter can vote three times.  If you are new please REGISTER AND VOTE AT http://brighterplanet.com/project_fund_projects/100 for Climate Change Native Habitat and Community Garden Shell Lake. 

Monarch Butterfly Habitat Sign

Got Milkweed? Sign made by Matt with DNR Grant

milkweed

Wild milkweed meadow Go Wild with Butterflies

I thought you might be interested in the DNR Monarch Butterfly Habitat that Happy Tonics has land use for a seasonal habitat.  Just look at the milkweed.  Native milkweed is the only host plant of the monarch butterfly and this meadow is full of milkweed.   Here is a photo of our sign that Matt made last year with a small grant from the Spooner DNR.

Today we want to thank Paul DeMain, Editor of News from Indian Country, for voting and passing the word along.  Please read Nick Vander Puy’s interview with Dawn White on the Importance of Water. 

Happy Tonics is a co-sponsor of the Environmental Film Festival.   We heard from Belinda Bowling, Owner Innkeeper, Casa Escondida Bed & Breakfast in Chimayo, New Mexico at http://www.casaescondida.com/

Sandy Stein and I had the pleasure of staying at the Casa when we were exhibiting at Tesuque Pueblo, New Mexico, in 2008.  Facebook friend Amy Lou Jenkins, author of Every Natural Fact Five Seasons of Open Air Parenting also voted for our grant proposal.  The book has not been released yet but can be pre-ordered.  We like to make friends all along the way.  So many individuals have emailed to say they have voted and we are deeply honored.  You never know who your friends are until you need them.

 Till tomorrow, keep up the good work.  REGISTER AND VOTE for Happy Tonics.  We love hearing from you.

Day Three – Brighter Planet VOTES NEEDED

Day three- The status report is better today.  We still need your votes at http://brighterplanet.com/project_fund_projects/100

REGISTER AND VOTE FOR adapting to Climate Change Native Habitat and Community Garden.  We have 68 votes as I write.  I am pleased.  Only 32 more votes and we’ll be at the 100 mark.  This is a landmark because it means we’ll be in the running to apply again if we don’t reach our goal this time.

We have 12 more days to go and we are campaigning for our cause.  Anything can happen. Just look what happened today.  We received a grant for $250 from Leopold Education Project a Program of Pheasants Forever.  This will help fund a raised bed garden for Girl Scout Troop 4362, Minnesota & Wisconsin Lakes and Pines in Shell Lake.  

Expect the unexpected to happen in life.  Things could change over the next 12 days.  Happy Tonics could gain the notice of some large environmental group that can sway votes our way.  One can only hope.  Remember change has always come from the ground up.  Here’s your chance to prove it.  Thanks!

Till tomorrow insectamonarca friends,

carlfarm1

Sending a beautiful sunset your way.

Be happy where ever you are.

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