Sacred Habitats

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How To Cook Grass-Raised Beef

SteakHumans have been eating and cooking grass-fed beef for centuries. The unique properties of grass-raised cattle is the omega 3-6 ratio is about 2:1, whereas the omega 3-6 ratio in grain-fed cattle is about 20:1; the omega 3s are what cause inflammation, the omega 6 are anti-inflammatory – there’s a huge difference here! The meat from grain-fed feedlot animals typically contains only 15 to 50 percent of the Omega 3′s of grass-fed livestock. This makes it easier to understand one reason why grain-raised beef is a rather unhealthy food for us to eat.

Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA) is the other unique property of grass-raised beef. CLA is produced in the cattle’s pH 7 stomach. CLA is a nutrient associated with lowered cancer risk, higher CLA levels assist humans eating grass-raised meats in burning fat and putting on more lean muscle mass. Two facts that have been very well documented.

Grain-raised cattle has a pH 4 stomach, which is quite acidic and doesn’t produce much CLA.

This means that even if you do chose leaner cuts of grain-fed beef you are still not getting any of the benefits of CLA, which may explain why many who do choose leaner cuts for health and weight loss find limited benefits.

No matter which way you look at it and analyze it, grass-raised beef out-shines grain-raised beef any day of the week.

Already we can see huge dietary differences in these two farming methods and the impacts to our health and wellness… and this does mean that we will want to cook our grass-raised beef in a different way, the ways humans cooked meat before grain-raised meats came into the picture.

The grass-raised beef fat is less and somewhat different and is healthy for us to eat. I think the largest difference I’ve found is that you really don’t want to grill, broil, roast, or cook your grass-raised beef fast as this causes the meat to become tough and dry.

Slow cooking, using a slightly lower temperature, is the way to go! This is why I also enjoy the Slow Food movement, it’s helping us to restore the way food once was handled. prepared and eaten.

If you don’t already have a source for grass-raised beef and other meats I highly recommend US Wellness Meats, they are a favorite of ours!

Grain-fed beef which contains considerably more fat is more forgiving of sloppy cooking and too high temperatures, whereas grass-fed beef needs a little extra attention and care; the same care people have taken in preparing food over the centuries.

How To Cook Grass-Raised Beef  Continue reading

Evelyn Vincent Evelyn Vincent

Native Plant Landscaper, Gardener, Labyrinth Design, Feng Shui Practitioner,  Aromatherapy / Essential Oils, Big Fan of Nature and Living Simply.

"There is nothing in a caterpillar that tells you it's going to be a butterfly."
~ R. Buckminster Fuller

Follow Me on Pinterest

SEO & Web Marketing – Content

The KISS theory (“Keep It Simple, Seriously”).

The design and layout should reflect your business, but don’t go overboard or people will not come back.

Things to consider are:

  • Do not design your site for a screen larger than the most common screen size. As of today large screens or high resolution has become the standard, with the exception of smart phones, but this can be remedied through the use of CSS (Cascading Style Sheets).
  • Too many colors will be too confusing (unless the designer is very, very good). Backgrounds are usually best when they are a single color or muted graphic or picture. If you want a picture or graphic as your background, make sure that the text will be easily readable over the entire graphic.
  • While frames are neat and sometimes useful, they can make it very tough on search engines when they try to index your site.
  • If you have more than one page, you will need a navigation system that is easy to use. While graphical is nice, simple text navigation works just as well and is easier to change if you tweak your design or colors.
  • Pictures and graphics can take a plain vanilla site and turn it into a tutti-frutti one. Unless your site is about pictures and graphics, don’t let them outweigh your text. I used to say keep them to a minimum. Four or five 20KB-25KB graphic files are sufficient. With the advent of high speed internet you can use more but still keep them small in file size (low 2 digit kilobytes). The pictures and graphics should be pertinent to and complimentary of your site.
  • Content is still king. It always will be. Use text pertinent to your topic for the page.
  • Page height should be no more than two to two and one-half screens in height with less scrolling better. Ideally, a page should be less than two screens in height.
  • Content should have the most relevant information near the top. Break the content into logical groups and place these groups on separate pages. Don’t make too many pages or your visitors may lose interest. Use your keywords in the body of your text, the file name, the page name and the description which is used by search engines.

Be aware that each browser displays HTML in a different way

Although they are getting closer to actually adhering to W3C standards. Microsofts’ Internet Explorer is the worst offender and has been since it hit the web. Even as such it still holds a significant share of the browser market (depends upon whose statistics you use.) For the sites I manage I have seen it drop from 80% to around 40%.

Try other browsers such as Safari or Firefox for a better web browsing experience.

Feel free to add a comment about any other W3C compliant web browser that you use and enjoy and feel that our readers may want to know about.

More articles on SEO & Web Marketing:

Be Smart When Designing Your Website

SEO & Web Marketing – Planning Considerations

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Curt SitersCurt Siters

Webmaster

Shoals Creek Village - a new build intentional community.

My Eco Oasis - the hub for what will be a network of many ecovillages.

Big fan of living simply

Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.  ~Albert Einstein

Man's heart away from nature becomes hard.  ~Standing Bear

SEO & Web Marketing – Planning Considerations Part 2

When you decide you want a web site, there are many items to consider. Any answer to each of the questions below have both positive and negative ramifications. This is just a basic list of considerations, and some positive or negative results of various answers to the questions, when thinking about putting a site on the web.

Will it be a personal site or business site?

If you are doing a personal site you have a world of creativity available to you with fewer downfalls as a result of those choices than a busness would. This creativity can make designing the website take longer as you discover new “cool” looks.

If it is a business site, in general, you cannot be as creative. The internet has matured quite a bit since the wild and wooly days of the 1990′s and early 2000′s. As a result of this increased maturity the people on the internet have let businesses know what works for them – things such as ease of navigation (easy to find links that help them get around the site) and basic structure (where on the web page they will look, and expect, different things to be).  This can actually make the designing of the website faster.

Will you need a basic storefront for a business, a catalog site, or a full e-commerce site?

  • A basic storefront could be considered as a fancy business card for your business. It is a simple page that provides the who, what, when, where, why and how of your business.
  • A catalog site allows a visitor the ability to browse your wares and/or search for specific items or items that meet specific needs. This is very much like someone browsing a print catalog at home.
  • A full blown e-commerce is probably the closest you can come to having a “physical” presence on the web – exclusive of virtual reality. You can have shopping carts, real-time interactive customer service/ sales associates available via online chat sessions, order tracking and more. The downside to this is that it CAN take a considerable amount of time and money to get it all set up – especially if it is a custom solution.

Will you do your own developing, or have someone else do it for you?

If you decide to do your own development, or have someone in your business do it for you, it can save you a lot of money, but it can also take longer to do. It can provide you with a lot of satisfaction but it can also look unfinished.

With a professional doing it for you, it may cost you quite a bit but it will look finished and get finished quicker.

Will you have a directory on another server, a subdomain or a full domain?

When I started with the web back in the mid 1990′s a domain name lease – you don\’t actually own the domain name – cost $1,000 per year. This was a major consideration on how people would type your website into the address bar of the web browser (e.g. mydomain.com vs. mysite.ahost.com or ahost.com/mysite.) Today it isn’t much of a concern as domain names can be had for about $10.00 per year.

Having said that it still has an impact whether you have a domain name or not.

Having a domain name basically allows you to say this is my island in the sea of information known as the world wide web. It is easier to remember, however, it is getting tougher to find a good domain name for a couple of reasons: 1) the sheer number of sites on the web, and 2) cybersquatters (people who buy domain names in the hope that they can “sell” them at a profit.

Using subdomains can save the expense of registering a domain name. It can also say “Hey! I’m part of a cool community” just like  at younglivingcircle.com or wordpress.com. It also eliminates the need for a domain name altogether because subdomain names do not need to be registered as it is considered part of the domain that is registered such as wisemanoils.younglivingcircle.com is part of younglivingcircle.com.

Will you be managing your own server or will your site be hosted?

Managing a site (meaning server hardware, server software as well as managing all the files that comprise your website) can be a full time job unto itself. It requires continuous monitoring to ensure that it is running and running right as well as taking care of security holes. Most people do not opt to host a site themselves, which is usually a wise move. Having said that if anything goes wrong, if you know what you are doing, you can get your site back online in a matter of minutes.

If you will be paying to have the site hosted someone else is responsible for all of that and more. Can you say double edged sword? That strength is also its weakness in that you are relying on someone somewhere else (usually hundreds of miles away or more) to do it for you. If anything goes wrong you must rely on them to sort it out and fix it – hosting systems are very complex and it could take a while.

Who will host your site?

If you decide to have someone else host your site look at them very closely. Do they have something that meets your needs in your target price  range? Do you need unlimited storage or bandwidth? How reliable are they?

I recently moved some sites from one host to another because the old host had some major issues. Issues such as ftp connections dropping and not being able to restart them, they were restoring from a backup files that were months and many versions out of date (the kicker that made me move the sites), DNS issues and many other smaller issues. Their uptime was great, their customer services was good but those issues made me say enough.

How will it tie in with your current marketing? Will you need to make changes?

When it comes down to it there basically two ways of approaching anything short term and long term. A website is a long term object, especially when it comes to maintaining a presence on the web. You shouldn’t change it to suit a whim because visitors will get used to how things are presented or how things work and a change can be more than they are willing do deal with.

I have a client that decided to move away from wordpress.com because they made some changes on the back end that really put this person out. Personally I could understand – the colors changed , the layout changed and some of what you had to click on to get to certain things changed. They really liked wordpress so we decided that self hosting wordpress where the upgrading could be controlled and access to workings of the wordpress application gave us the opportunity to mitigate any egregious problems.

If it is for a business, how will the site tie in with your regular business?

Ultimately this is the question. This is the why of the whole deal. Why do you want a website?

Do your research and make your plan.

# # #

Curt SitersCurt Siters

Webmaster

Shoals Creek Village - a new build intentional community.

My Eco Oasis - the hub for what will be a network of many ecovillages.

Big fan of living simply

Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.  ~Albert Einstein

Man's heart away from nature becomes hard.  ~Standing Bear

How To Use a Broadfork (instead of digging garden beds)

BroadforkThis simple and primitive looking tool, the Broadfork, is one I highly recommend every garden. The Broadfork is used to loosen and aerate soil without causing disturbance to the beneficial organisms and ecology in your soil layers. I prefer using a Broadfork over using a rototiller any day. I find the Broadfork to be in alignment with my gardening philosophy, which is; observe, learn, then do only that which sustains all beneficial life-forms in the garden, and whenever possible avoid using things that keep us dependent on outside sources (such as: gas, oil, manufactured equipment that can and will breakdown). The Broadfork is going to out-live any rototiller and it does not require any form of energy once it’s manufactured, other than your own – which makes it useful in weight-control and provides many other health benefits.

Using a Broadfork will also not allow weed seeds, which are hidden in your soil to come close to the surface of the soil and germinate; which is always the reality when using a rototiller or double-digging. Continue reading

Evelyn Vincent Evelyn Vincent

Native Plant Landscaper, Gardener, Labyrinth Design, Feng Shui Practitioner,  Aromatherapy / Essential Oils, Big Fan of Nature and Living Simply.

"There is nothing in a caterpillar that tells you it's going to be a butterfly."
~ R. Buckminster Fuller

Follow Me on Pinterest

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