Information Central

Teach our children to be mindful

Now, what is next? We did Christmas and we are all in debt we bought way too much for our kids know how to we tell them there is no money for the next 6 months because we were so determined to buy them what they wanted or what their friends wanted, and they had to have it too. Doesn’t this sound like the rat race that is all around us?
We didn’t get caught up in this as our children are all grown up and they each have their own perspective on how to raise a great adult. They are both right but doing it a different way each of them.
One of them lives a very meager existence in India and volunteers at the school her and her husband started about 15 years ago. They have one child, but this child is one that was rescued from the streets of India. He has grown up very lucky compared to his other brothers and sisters. He is experiencing a great life of gratitude and respect and has lots to lead a productive life and he has hopes and dreams that would never been within his reach if he had not be rescued we send presents to him but not overboard since he would have them stolen.This is not to mock these children but to let you know that the children in the streets have nothing and when they see my grandson with something that without the realms of their reach they want it and will try and sell it.

Now the other grandchild, a girl, and her mom is a single mom unfortunately for the mom, she manages quite well and is quite the disciplinarian too. The little girl is very respectful and gratuitous as well. She has many activities that keep her occupied and not wanting or pursuing the entertainment of Television. She sometimes wants what she thinks she needs or what others want but her mother is trying to raise her to be satisfied with what is given to you and not always wanting more. She loves to go to second-hand shops too so that is a good thing. One time when we were going to visit her in Iceland she asked us to look for a coat for her but a pretty one, But Grandma she said, go to a thrift store. That just blew me away.
The point I am getting at here is we need to raise children who are satisfied and thankful for what is given to them. They also need to be respectful of other emotions and feeling. Not that we need to take on their problems but we need to create empathic adults and be mindful of others and we would have a more productive and happier world.

what is the economy of Iceland ?

The Icelandic economy has traditionally been dominated by fish and seafood; later by banking; and finally now by something hopefully far more balanced.

In centuries past Icelanders had little the world at large wanted to buy – with the exception of excellent lamb, mutton and wool; and the plentiful supply of fish in the sea. It’s therefore no surprise that Iceland remained a poor agrarian society until technology started allowing people to live in towns without starving.

Even after this time fish exports generated nearly all the country’s export earnings, even as the proportion of the population working in other sectors increased.

We all know what happened when the financial sector was let loose: people flocked to the banks because they offered great salaries and good working conditions; and people got rich. The only problems with this financial miracle were that a lot of interests became vested as employees sank large sums into bank shares, and that other economic sectors suffered due to the lack of good people to employ.

All of a sudden the nation’s best and brightest fishermen were working in the banks – and the problem was even more acute for innovative industries like software development, tourism, science and technology. But then, even more suddenly than it had started, the economic miracle came to an end over a few weeks in autumn 2008. People were seriously wondering if there would still be food in the supermarkets by Christmas and whether or not the nation would go bankrupt.

Even after this time fish exports generated nearly all the country’s export earnings, even as the proportion of the population working in other sectors increased.

We all know what happened when the financial sector was let loose: people flocked to the banks because they offered great salaries and good working conditions; and people got rich. The only problems with this financial miracle were that a lot of interests became vested as employees sank large sums into bank shares, and that other economic sectors suffered due to the lack of good people to employ.

All of a sudden the nation’s best and brightest fishermen were working in the banks – and the problem was even more acute for innovative industries like software development, tourism, science and technology. But then, even more suddenly than it had started, the economic miracle came to an end over a few weeks in autumn 2008. People were seriously wondering if there would still be food in the supermarkets by Christmas and whether or not the nation would go bankrupt.

Tourism is one of the main prongs of the Icelandic economy today. Fishing remains so as well – generating the biggest share of foreign capital into the country, but employing a tiny percentage of the workforce. Then there is heavy industry (mostly aluminium smelting), which generates a lot of cash and employs quite a lot of people. Finally is the innovation and high-tech sector, which continues to innovate above its global weight and is doing well. The all-important renewable energy sector is what Iceland is increasingly known for around the world, and we include that in the high-tech category.

So there we have it: probably not the funniest article on this website, but an important one nevertheless.

Fun facts of Icelandic Horses

The Icelandic horse is one of the most interesting breeds around.

Here are five facts that you probably did not know about them:

1. The Icelandic horses have five gaits; walk, trot, canter, tölt (tolt) and skeið (flying pace).

We all know the walk, trot, and canter. But what are the tolt and flying pace? The tolt is similar to the running walk of a Walking Tennessee Horse and it is a very smooth-beat gait. So when your Icelandic horse is tolting, it is basically a very smooth fast trot. Awesome! If you haven’t heard of the Flying Pace, it is worth checking out. This is when the horse moves the same side of the legs together, and there is a moment of suspension, where the horse does really appear to be flying. This is a fast gait and it is used for racing over short distances. Not all Icelandic horses can do this and the ones that can, are considered to be special.

2. Icelandic horses originally came to Iceland on Viking ships.

The Icelandic Horses were brought by Viking ships to serve the purpose of being the sole source of transportation over Iceland’s rough terrain. They remained the only mode of transportation for centuries until the first automobile arrived in 1913.

3. Icelandic law prevents horses from being imported in the country.

Since 982 AD, Iceland has banned the importation of horses. and any horse that has been exported cannot return again. This means that the Icelandic horse living in Iceland today has never been around another breed of horse than its own. This has also led to the native Icelandic horses to have very few diseases

4. 1000 years of no cross breeding means that the Icelandic Horse is the purest breed in the world.

Not only is there one breed of horse of in Iceland, but any horse that are sub-standard are excluding from the breeding programs. You will not find purer than this!

5. Icelandic horses are short, and have many of the characteristics of a pony.

But they are horses! Those who ride them say that they have a horse’s feel not a pony’s! The Icelandic refer to them as horses and that’s what matters anyway! The Icelandic don’t even have a word for ‘pony’

Common Myths about mental illness



Myth #1: Mental health problems do not affect children or youth. Any problems they have are just part of growing up.

Reality: One in five children and youth struggle with their mental health. 70% of adult mental illness begins during childhood or adolescence.

Myth #2: It is the parents’ fault if children suffer from mental health problems.

Reality: Mental health disorders in children are caused by biology, environment, or a combination of both. They can be caused by genetics or biological factors such as a chemical imbalance or prenatal exposure to alcohol or drugs. They can also be the result of abusive or neglectful treatment or stressful events.


Myth #3: People with a mental illness are ‘psycho’, mad and dangerous, and should be locked away.

Reality: Most people who have a mental illness struggle with depression and anxiety. They have normal lives, but their feelings and behaviours negatively affect their day-to-day activities. Conduct disorders or acting out behaviours are consistently the primary reason for referral to a children’s mental health agency.

Myth #4: Depression is a character flaw and people should just ‘snap out of it’.

Reality: Research shows that depression has nothing to do with being lazy or weak. It results from changes in brain chemistry or brain function. Therapy and/or medication help people to recover.

Myth #5: Once you have a mental illness you will be sick your whole life.

Reality: TREATMENT WORKS! 75% of children and youth significantly improve by the end of treatment, which usually is less than 10 sessions. Click here: Go to ”Our Services” page for a listing of all our services and links to more information.



what is the difference between anxiety and depression

I have complied a simple in layman’s terms the subtle differences and similarities between depression and anxiety.

How To Understand The Difference and Similarities Between Anxiety And Depression


Anxiety and depression often go hand in hand. Because of this, it is sometimes tough to know whether someone is experiencing one of these mental illnesses versus the other. Depression can sound like being in a bottomless hole whereas anxiety can seem like a condition in which people are full of energy. For this reason, it seems counterintuitive that someone could experience them simultaneously. And yet, it is not only possible but also common. To reduce some of the confusion about the differences between depression and anxiety, here is a quick reference guide on how these illnesses manifest themselves in life. Eighty percent of people who have been diagnosed with depression have also been diagnosed with some sort of anxiety disorder. In addition, thirty percent of people with depression have also been diagnosed some sort of panic disorder. As a result, it may seem like most people with depression have an anxiety or panic disorder. But this is not entirely true; there are many people who suffer only from depression or only from anxiety. There is also some confusion about the differences between these mental illnesses because some people incorrectly use the terms ‘depression’ and ‘anxiety’ interchangeably. However, depression and anxiety are distinct mental illnesses with different symptoms.

Everyone experiences the occasional bout of sadness, whether the cause is a personal experience or something that has occurred on a broader scope. It becomes a problem when it starts to affect daily functioning and changes physical and mental wellbeing. That is when it becomes clinical depression, but if the condition continues to spiral downward for the long-term, a person is diagnosed with dysthymia or neurotic depression. Several key factors must be examined to find successful treatment plans.

an anonymous article.



Pulling the wool over his eyes

What does the expression “Pulling the wool over his eyes”

The natural assumption is that this phrase derives from the wearing of woollen wigs, which were fashionable for both men and women in the 16th and 17th centuries. The phrase itself is of 19th century American origin. The earliest example that I can find of it in print is from the Milwaukee Daily Sentinel And Gazette, October 1839:

“And we ask one question that they dare not firmly answer, whether they are not now making a tolerable attempt to pull the wool over the eyes of the people.”

The ‘wig’ derivation is probably correct but there must be an element of doubt about it as the wearing of wigs had largely died out in the USA by the early 19th century. The tradition has continued in Europe where the judiciary of several countries wear wigs in court. Not so in the USA, where the third president Thomas Jefferson (president between 1801 – 1809), although a wig wearer himself, advised the judiciary there:

“For Heaven’s sake discard the monstrous wig which makes the English judges look like rats peeping through bunches of oakum.”

Some myths about mental illness


I was reading some interesting facts today on the internet about myths of mental health .they were written by Catherine Roberts, not sure who she is but she has some interesting facts I will share here.

Current day society often doesn’t see the forest for the trees when it comes to deciphering mental health myths from real facts.

In fact, the stigmas that surround mental illness hinder our understanding about many of the mental disorders that are prevalent today -such as depression, anxiety and mood disorders, bipolar disorder and more. She has explained  here some common misnomers concerning mental illness.

  1. Mental illness  are Genetic  It is easy to paint all mental health disorders with the same brush, but the idea that mental health problems are predisposed biologically or genetically is a large mistruth, according to Dr. David Goldbloom, Senior  Medical Adviser at Toronto ‘s Centre for addiction and mental health.  When you think about the variation of mental health issues – mood disorders, personality disorders, sexual disorders, anxiety disorders, impulse control issues – you can suddenly understand how all issues can’t possible originate from one genetic source. Each disorder has its own characteristics and underlying causes or combination of causes, like mental trauma, physical illness, abuse, a brain injury and yes even a family history of mental health can play into this equation.  Claiming all mental illnesses are all the same is just like saying that all cancers are the same says Dr. David Goldbloom who astutely points our that the causes , symptoms features , and treatments for these diseases all vastly differ.
  2. Being mentally ill and mental disabled are the same.     While a mental disability is characterized by an impaired  intellectual and oftentimes social function – patients with mental illness can suffer from impaired thought processes, physical and emotional function , as well as the ability to relate to environments and others. And while some mental illnesses may impair memory , lowered intellect has nothing to do with it. In fact , mental health professors at Dalhousie University in Halifax maintain that the majority of those suffering with mental disorders are creative, working and productive members of society.
  3. I can’t do anything to help mental health patients.   Sure you can, like any other medical issue fomr a mental health issue need our support, especially considering less than 40 percent of adults with a diagnosable mental health issue seek out and receive treatment. Why is the number so low? Perhaps the stigma attached to mental health makes the majority of sufferers ashamed to ask for help. This is why the support and understanding of family and friends is a good first step to seeking help and treatment services.
  4. Mental illnesses Patients are Dangerous.   Not true, in fact reports from the CAMH in Toronto indicate that only5-percent Add to dictionary  acts  are perpetrated by individuals with mental health disorders. However, those suffering from a mental health disorder are 10 times more likely to become the victim of violent crime. The reality is that majority of individuals with mental illness are active members of society with no violence tendencies whatsoever. Also, it should be noted that in cases where violence does occur, the individual with mental illness is most often using alcohol, drugs or placed in a severely threatened state.

What can we do to help reduce the stigma of mental health?



This is such a delicate topic in our society today. It has always been sensitive. No one wants to say they have a mental illness. None of us think it is something that we can talk about openly.  But today in time 2017 an opportunity to speak to people who are there to support all who are struggling with depression, anxiety , loneliness, and bi polar. It is more exceptible to share with others and reach out for help .

These are some very simple steps we as lay people and also the professional in life can reduce the stigma.

1)Don’t label people who have a mental illness

Don’t say things like ” He’s bipolar or she’s schizophrenic. People are people and not diagnoses. Instead we need to say , He has a bipolar disorder or she has schizophrenia And say  has a mental illness in stead of is mentally ill. This shows respect for the individual and says the illness doesn’t define the person.

2) Don’t be afraid of people with mental illness.

Sure they may sometimes display unusual behaviors when their illness is more severe, but people with mental illness aren’t more likely to be violent than the general populations. In fact , they are more likely to be victims of violence. Don’t fall prey to other inaccurate stereotypes, such as the deranged killer or the weird co-worker depicted in the movies.

3) Don’t use disrespectful terms for people with mental illness.

In a research  study with British 14 year olds , the teens came up with over 250 terms to describe mental illness, and the majority were negative.  These terms  are far too common in our everyday conversations. Also,  be careful about using  “diagnostic  terms to describe behavior like that my OCD or she’s so borderline. Given that 1 in 4 adults experience a mental illness, you quite likely may be offending someone and not be aware of it.

4) Don’t be insensitive or blame people with mental illness.

It would be silly to tell someone to  just buckle down and get over cancer. and the same applies to mental illness. Also , don’t assume that someone is okay just because they look or act okay or sometimes smile or laugh. Depression, anxiety and other mental illnesses can often be hidden, but the person can still be in considerable internal distress. Provide support and reassurance when you know someone is having difficulty managing their illness.

To wind up this explanation, it is awfully scary to face the dark side of yourself where the mental  illness lives.  It is nearly impossible to admit to suicidal or self-‘harm feelings because you want to judge them and you feel terrible about them and you’re worried about how other people will judge you because of them .


The trouble is  —– if you don’t admit there is a problem , you will never find a solution.

The Fruits of Success

This is the time of year when all the wonderful fruits from the Okanagan and surrounding areas are bountiful . We all love to have them accessible when the winter is upon us so I have included some ideas for fruits to keep them fresh.

Preparing cut fruit ahead of time

Keep fruit from turning brown by dissolving two crushed vitamin C tablets in a bowl of cool water before adding fruit or toss the freshly cut fruit in lemon juice and it will not darken. The juice of half a lemon is enough for a quart  or two of cut fruits.

For Fruits cut in two, brush surfaces with lemon to prevent discoloration. 

Ripened to Perfection   Strawberries

Can be kept firm for several days if you store them in a colander in the refrigerator, which allows the cold air to circulate between them.

Never hull strawberries until they have been washed or they will absorb too much water and become mushy.

Peaches, pears and tomatoes (yes tomatoes are a fruit)

Ripen quickly by placing them in a brown paper bag with a ripe apple. Set in a cool, shady spot and make sure there are  a few holes in the bag. The ripe apple gives off a gas , ethylene, which stimulates other fruit to ripen.

This is a just a little fruit for thought . (tee hee)




Best Helpful Kitchen Hints!

fowl play

Birds of a Feather

No more fowl play  Defrost frozen chicken by soaking in cold water that;s been heavily salted. Meat will be pure and white and flavorful.

Talking Turkey

Dental Floss is good fro trussing turkeys, chickens and other meats because it does not burn and is very strong.

Fresh Squeezed Orange Juice

 How is that?  Yes every morning it is possible to have fresh squeezed orange juice and the oranges are picked right off the trees in the CAMPOS  just a mile up the hill from our house here in Colmenar.

And now you ask what is a Campo. Well a campo is a place or small farmland in the hills all around the small towns here in Spain. Many people have a home in the town also a small place on the campo where they have gardens and some have goats too. A neighbour two door up from us here has a sweet little place here and they usually sleep in the campo. They are always bringing us oranges and lemons and tomatoes and lettuce from their gardens. We have been very blessed with how generous everyone has been.

Not only can you get oranges from the campo but when you go walking in the town there are many trees laden with oranges and limons too. So some people have been know to pick them right from the trees in the streets. So this morning we had fresh squeezed orange juice oh so good.