Archive for December, 2017

How to Live a More Meaningful Life

Author: Meera, December 19, 2017

Since the dawn of civilization, humans have engaged in repeated, meaningful acts or rituals. Anthropologists who have observed and studied rituals across cultures point out that rituals vary greatly and are used for many reasons–from healing grief, reducing anxiety, invoking dreams, setting intentions, or enhancing confidence. See,



More than 150 rituals for sound mind, strong body, and meaningful connections to the people around you

More than 150 rituals for sound mind, strong body, and meaningful connections to the people around you


While social scientists have not fully addressed precisely how rituals work, research shows that they do work.  Whether it is the effort we put into the repetition of steps or the degree of commitment we have for doing the ritual, rituals add meaning to activities that we use to cope, feel confident, and mark milestones as well as passages in our lives.


From a personal standpoint, I’ve seen rituals of many cultures in my travels, and even participated in some. In Rituals for Life. my goal was to show how even the simplest act of awakening at dawn, for example, when yoked with a ritual (such as folding hands and facing the sun or spending a moment in mindfulness) can impart meaning and set the tone for a new day.


I used rituals that included declaration of intention, visualization, and other techniques to manifest my farmette and other elements of the ideal life I wanted–a life of living close to the earth, finding meaning in everyday activities, and writing books on topics I love.


In Rituals for Life, the complexity of the rituals in each chapter varies–some are quite simple; for example, practicing mindfulness as you drink a glass of warm water with lemon for your health. Alternatively, a ritual for embarking on a personal empowerment retreat has a few more steps. Instead of going through the motions of a daily routine without giving much thought to what you’re doing, adding a simple ritual can layer in meaning.


Whether you seek vibrant mind-body health, more gratitude, techniques for grounding, a sense of peace, financial security, or personal empowerment and  renewal, you’ll find chapters on these topics and others as well as sequences of rituals at the end of each chapter.


Rituals for Life is an easy-to-use, self-help book for anyone who desires a more meaningful and mindful way of living. This hardcover book is the perfect starting point for creating a fantastic new year or new life. To see more, click on the URL:


Surprise someone you love.  Tuck this little volume into the holiday stocking of a friend or loved one. Or, treat yourself.  Enjoy! –Happy Holidays to all, from Meera Lester








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Svalbarg–Protecting Seed Diversity for Our Planet

Author: Meera, December 14, 2017

If you’ve ever saved your favorite food crop seeds from one year to the next and then lost them because of flooding or storage failure, you might feel disheartened. But a cataclysmic loss of seed diversity for food crops in certain parts of the world could mean starvation for millions.



A squash plant will grow well in small gardens up a teepee of three poles or on a fence

Genetically modified seed (such as corn) will not be accepted in the Svalbarg Global Seed Vault


Roughly 1,750 genetic seed banks have been established around the globe to save seeds and preserve agricultural plant diversity. But many banks are vulnerable to threats such as war and civil strife, lack of funding, man-made and natural disasters, equipment failures, mismanagement, and other factors.



Established to protect diverse seed collections against catastrophic loss, the Svalbarg Global Seed Vault (SGSV) is a long-term backup storage facility for the world’s 1750 seed banks.


The SGSV houses millions of diverse seeds for food crops. However, Norwegian law prohibits the facility from storing genetically modified seed.


The Svalbarg Global Seed Vault is located inside a mountain on a remote island in the Svalbarg archipelago off the coast of Norway. The island is situated halfway between the Norwegian mainland and the North Pole.


Climate change affects the environment and ecosystems supporting agricultural food crops.  Crop diversity underpins food stability and security.


Onion and garlic are considered kitchen staples all over the world

Onion and garlic are considered kitchen staples all over the world


Rising populations along with changing environments and diminished resources are global challenges the world is facing. A secured food supply is necessary to end hunger. Gene banks and seed saving trusts help maintain genetic diversity and ensure greater resources for all of humankind. (See,


Civil strife and war have resulted in the loss of many seed banks throughout the world. In 2015, the first withdrawal of seed from the vault was made by Syrian researchers after the bombing of Aleppo destroyed their seed bank. Some seed banks like that of Iraq and Afghanistan have been completely lost.


To take a tour inside the Svalbarg vault, go to,




If you enjoy reading about environmental and farming topics, check out my Henny Penny Farmette cozy mysteries. Besides a mystery, they include helpful tips about heirloom gardening, caring for fruit and citrus trees, keeping chickens and bees, and delicious farm-to-table and canning recipes. For more information, click on the URLs.



Murders at a N. California winery is a catalyst for ex-cop turned farmette owner Abigail Mackenzie

A California winery murder impels  beekeeper and farmette owner Abby Mackenzie to smoke out a killer



The second novel in the Henny Penny Farmette series comes out September 27, 2016

Abby stirs up a New Age cult as she searches for clues into the murder of Fiona, her free-spirited friend



First book in Meera Lester's Henny Penny Farmette series of cozy mysteries

The book that launched the Henny Penny Farmette series in which Abby investigates the murder of her town’s celebrity pastry chef







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