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“Awareness is learning to keep yourself company. And then learn to be more compassionate company; as if you were somebody you are fond of and wish to encourage.”

On The Beach by Victor Laredo

Date Created: 1935 – 1943

Hand Sanitizer: Make Your Own

aloe blog

We have some aloe vera plants. I decided to make my own hand sanitizer. I watched a couple videos about how to extract aloe vera gel.

I cut off an older leaf. I cut off the ends and sides. With a knife I sliced off the skin on one side. It was hard to slice off the skin because the skin on our plant is thin. (I watched other videos where the leaf has a thicker skin, and the thicker skin looked easier to slice off.) I tried various kitchen utensils to scrape off the gel: a fork (too shreddy), a spoon worked good. I also used a razor blade. I also just squeezed it.

I got 2 Tablespoons of gel. I put the gel and 4 Tablespoons of 70% rubbing alcohol in a food processor and blended it. The ratio is 1 part aloe vera to 2 parts rubbing alcohol. The rubbing alcohol has to be at least 60% alcohol. I strained it into a dispenser and now I can use it. It made 1/4 cup; good to know how much one leaf made.

Take care!


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“When we take a real vacation – in the true sense of “holiday,” time marked by holiness, a sacred period of respite – our sense of time gets completely warped. Unmoored from work-time and set free, if temporarily, from the tyranny of schedules, we come to experience life exactly as it unfolds, with its full ebb and flow of dynamism – sometimes slow and silken.”

For Evelyn.

Photo by Arnold Genthe

Blunder Ahead

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“You can do anything you want to do.  What is rare is this actual wanting to do a certain thing:  wanting it so much that you are practically blind to other things, that nothing else will satisfy you…I know I have said a lot when I say, ‘You can do anything you want to do.’  But I mean it…Blunder ahead with your personal view…The real work of art is the result of a magnificent struggle.” 

Robert Henri, painter

Illustration by John Gannam. Wow, what an amazing illustrator Mr. Gannam was!


“Are the days of winter sunshine just as sad for you, too? When it is misty, in the evenings, and I am out walking by myself, it seems to me that the rain is falling through my heart and causing it to crumble into ruins.”

— Gustave Flaubert

Photograph A Ray of Sunshine by Claudia Dea (public domain)