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My 13-year-old daughter led me to karate classes, joined on a whim with with her. Early on, in Master Tomoaki Koyabu, I saw what seemed to be a dance inside all of the moves -- a remarkable dance, unlike any other, that held karate all together and made it powerful and beautiful.

Gradually, the particulars of what this entailed and how to teach it came ever clearer.
During the writing Dancing in the Kara of Te with Koyabu sensei, it gelled into the Inner Kara-Te Dance Routine, the middle section of the book, with 8 instructional videos on YouTube. Click on the link at left to get to them.

The first part explores the emergence of the karate way of movement and living as a uniquely Okinawan gift to the world. The latter part gives some of my thoughts on learning the karate way.
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Spinster of Science: A Memoir
from Girlhood to B.Sc. Graduate

A coming-of-age story about my passionate efforts to become a scientist, to forward intelligent, sustainable human life on earth. What a gauntlet to run, overcoming stumbling blocks and thwartings without end. What an education, in how nature works, people behave, and human systems operate. What a graduation, into a world where science continues its many bad habits, with planet-killing results.

What to do about this problem? We need to talk about how science works, at the level of who gets into its high priesthood and who gets excluded. Because women are still woefully under-represented, we need case studies such as this one, to see what happened decades ago to produce our current crop of mostly male senior scientists. We can then compare it to today's selection procedures, which are still failing women, and take vital corrective actions.

Contact me if you're interested.

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On Stormy Seas: The Triumphs &
Torments of Captain George Vancouver

After more than a decade of living in Vancouver, BC, and seeing Vancouver Island to the west, I got curious about who all this valuable real estate was named after. Did he deserve such honouring?

After another decade spent researching Captain George Vancouver and his world, I wrote his story. On Stormy Seas was published in 1992, in time for the 200th anniversary of Vancouver's arrival on the Pacific N.W. coast, which he charted from southern California to Alaska - in three summers, an astonishing feat.

Captain Vancouver completed the world map, erasing the last "There be dragons". This had a stunning inpact on those in the know in 1798, as much as seeing the Earth from the Moon did for us in 1969. It was truly a finite planet. Since Vancouver's mapping, it's been a race for the spoils, drawing up national boundaries and jockeying for wealth.

"Beyond the Map" Virtual Museum video

It's been long out of print, but easily gotten from used booksellers online.

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Green Pilgrims Guide
to the Southern Gulf Islands

A narrow book, the width of tourist brochures and maps, that comes in a folder just the right size to hold these keepsakes from a unique place that's home to two of Canada's rarest tree ecosystems.

Green pilgrims are those who tour with reverence for nature, not only in the sites they visit, but in their travelling habits, going as lightly on possible on dear Mother Earth.

This guide gives eco-friendly travellers a good overview of a place so special that it's the world's only Islands Trust area. It covers about as much as visitors will remember, and it summarizes more than many residents know. A handy reference, with easy storage pockets for brochures and notes gathered on the journey.

I have a few copies still. Contact me if you're interested.

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The Riverview Lands:
Western Canada's First Botancal Garden

The fight goes on to keep the Riverview Hospital Lands intact, to be used in perpetuity for psychiatric care and training. Click here for a letter I wrote recently that was published in three newspapers, including the Vancouver Sun.

I co-edited this 1994 book with Val Adolph, as well as illustrated parts and pulled it together for publication. It's out of print and has been supplanted by a different sort of book about the lands, but the history it covers and the logic of building on the enlightened vision of Riverview's founders remains relevant.

Used copies are available online, and many B.C. libraries have a copy.

See the Riverview Horticultural Centre Society's webpage, with many valuable links, to stay current with the on-going battle to save this remarkable site, intact for psychiatric use, for all time.

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Encore: A Program of Environmental Studies

I spent 10 years developing curriculum materials and teaching environmental and science education to students from kindergarten to high school. Teachers said they knew HOW to teach, but needed help with WHAT to teach in the great outdoors.

In the mid-70s, I devised the Encore Program of Environmental Studies, co-authored with Patricia Keays and published by the B.C. Ministry of Fish & Wildlife, Information & Education Branch. It has a teacher's book, field trip guide, and 256 activity cards outlining with things to do before, during, and after outings, all stored in a wooden box, for easy, dry transportation on outings.

Encore won first prize in a North America-wide contest for the best environmental education program developed in 1975

It's long out of print and out of use, but full of great teaching information and ideas. If you live nearby, contact me to come see my very rare copy.

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newspaper columns

For more than eight years, I wrote weekly editorial-page columns.

They started with The Tri-City News in Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam, and Port Moody. The Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows News picked them up for a few years, and the Gulf-Islands Driftwood ran my pieces for two years.

Click on the image or link for a sampling of some favourites and others chosen to show the breadth of topics covered.

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Telling Maya
a novel

Why has God sent no girls as prophets and saviours?

The truth is, a God worth following has. These holy women been hidden from us, hounded from their rightful place, helping us run the world intelligently and sustainably.

This story follows the lives of Maya, the oldest of God's daughters alive in our times, her ever-imperiled daughter, and the toddler granddaughter, perhaps last of their line. Before Maya dies, she decides to reveal her identity to the world. Who will write this biography? - a most dangerous undertaking, sure to lead either to their extinction or dearly needed acceptance as forces vital to ushering in a new, truly enlightened era for Mother Earth and her children.

Contact me for copies. Plans are afoot to publish it as an e-book, under its original title and cover image as God's Daughter.

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odyssey, noun: a long series of wanderings and adventures, especially when filled with notable experiences and hardships

Sockeye Salmon Odyssey is the story of sockeye salmon of British Columbia through their lifecycle and travels.
  • for parents, grandparents, other kin, babysitters, and teachers to read with children age 6 - 12.
  • an illustrated natural history covering science, arts, vocabulary, numbers, graphs, maps, and more
  • for active reading, with questions to ask, answers to fill in, pages to colour and add detail
  • jam-packed into 58 pages total, to save paper and trees, using Forest Stewardship Council certified paper

To read a sample and buy, click here.

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A great Christmas Eve book for kids!

Christmas Island is brightly illustrated story about an elf named Finn, who knew Santa as a boy. He tells amazing stories to 8-year-old Penny, who is in a strange house with a babysitter, waiting for cousin Matt to fly home after getting lost on Christmas Island.

To read sample pages and buy as an e-book, click here


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Winter of the Shifting Stars

The Lakota, Dakota, and Nakota tribes were friends and allies, which is what kota means. Their enemies called them the Sioux.

Winter of the Shifting Stars is a story about a year in the life of a 10-year-old Lakota girl called Blue Whirlwind. She must grow up to be the proud mother of her people, while supporting her older brother through the summer Sun Dance and other trials so he may become a great warrior.

The story is set in 1833, the year a brilliant meteor shower took place. Blue Whirlwind’s father had been killed the previous year by enemy warriors. Her village works to pay back this tragedy, while continuing to live the everyday, traditional life of a Lakota family throughout most of the year, punctuated by occasional celebrations and tribulations.

To read sample pages and buy as an e-book, click here.