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Holly Phaneuf Erskine
Door County, WI
I love to write, science and fiction. If my writings help or simply give joy, I am fulfilled.
Interests: Science, medicine, health, caregiving, music, harp, chemistry, medicinal chemistry, botany, astronomy, writing, cats, environment, meditation, neuroscience, fiction
Recent Activity
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Chemicals from herbs often mediate effects on your cells by temporarily fitting into either receptors or enzymes. Like a key fitting into a lock, particular herbal chemicals can only fit into particular receptors or enzymes. They do this using the attractive version of the electrostatic force. Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at Plants
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It's healing for me to reread old letters from my mom before bed. Immersing myself in her words, she comes alive again. I wake, step out into my gentle woods, put out my compost, and talk to what I think of as my greater mother about my new concerns. I'm... Continue reading
Posted 5 days ago at Meditation/mindfulness
Sometimes all we teachers want is to convey wonder. And it isn't always easy. Continue reading
Posted Sep 4, 2022 at Chemistry
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I decided that to people who suffer easily from sensory overload, introverts like myself, are troubled by randomness, because there is a potential Message in randomness. Continue reading
Posted Sep 4, 2022 at Meditation/mindfulness
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I'm reading old journals of mine which is mostly healing. I was struck by this passage about why clutter is upsetting: "I enjoyed the rest of the day in bliss just cleaning and vacuuming, actually. I decided that to people who suffer easily from sensory overload, introverts like myself, are... Continue reading
Posted Sep 3, 2022 at Neurodiversity/Synesthesia
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I love it when these things happen. Our hearts are warmed by this Madison, WI family who impulsively bought our DVD from Brew Coffeehouse of Door County. They watched The Emissary that night. The next day, inspired by The Red Putter Mini Golf scene, they even more impulsively decided to... Continue reading
Posted Aug 29, 2022 at The Emissary Movie
The FIRST MINUTE ONLY of this Youtube video has some stray audio to be ignored, hang with it! On the surface, our movie seems like a silly sci fi comedy. But as I've turned into a book, I notice a deeper theme: how to be grateful and mindful when we... Continue reading
Posted Aug 29, 2022 at The Emissary Movie
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Play mom’s phone message by clicking either link below: Download Beautiful day mom message Beautiful day mom message "Hellooo Tim and Holly! How are you? How is your world there, and your movie? Your weather and your friends and family? You, yourself from head to toe? All are part of... Continue reading
Posted Jul 26, 2022 at Genealogy/family
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My great great grandfather John Lester Chisholm, or "Chis", is mentioned in this little book, Round About Katahdin by Ronald L Gower. I hate for old books to be out of print and out of circulation, so I thought I would get this one digitized and available for Katahdin fans... Continue reading
Posted Jul 6, 2022 at Genealogy/family
Big thanks to Mike Orlock for reviewing our movie. As Koyper would say, we think he hit the button on the head. He captured it well. If it looks like we were having fun here, you would be correct. Lots of fun filming with dear, tolerant friends, lots of sleep... Continue reading
Posted Jul 1, 2022 at Fiction
Big thanks to Mike Orlock for reviewing our movie. As Koyper would say, we think he hit the button on the head. He captured it well. If it looks like we were having fun here, you would be correct. Lots of fun filming with dear, tolerant friends, lots of sleep... Continue reading
Posted Jul 1, 2022 at The Emissary Movie
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For Juneteenth I'll share how my mom's parents were braver than I think I could be. Working for the Mather School for Colored Girls in the 1930 aiming to provide equal education to young Gullah girls, right after a time where, I was reminded by one of the Mather museum... Continue reading
Posted Jun 19, 2022 at Genealogy/family
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My mom's message for today randomly chosen from her many journals: "Growing takes place just when you think nothing is happening. Intensity of bleakness just before something opens up. Things may have different rhythms. It may be months or years before a creative work emerges, surfaces. We grow by delays.... Continue reading
Posted Jun 18, 2022 at Meditation/mindfulness
Note: I wrote this before the Covid-19 pandemic. Most of us now are keenly aware that the virus that causes Covid-19 often damages the brain's olfactory bulb, causing anosmia, a loss of smell and taste. Prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, researchers were alarmed to learn that anosmia was associated with... Continue reading
Posted Jun 17, 2022 at Medicine/fitness
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If you are in Door County mid June, you have at least three chances to meet my friend and editor Catherine Young. She is giving readings from her new book of eco-poetry, Geosmin. In addition to Algoma's Yardstick Books June 18th, Catherine is speaking at Write On, Door County June 15 at 4 PM and the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Door County at 7 PM, also on June 15th. Continue reading
Posted Jun 8, 2022 at Fiction
“The research suggests that training the brain to respond differently to pain signals may be more effective — and last longer — than traditional physical therapy and medication.” I like to put this in the category of can't hurt, might help. Continue reading
Posted Jun 5, 2022 at Medicine/fitness
From the Emissary Mindfulness archives 2022 Update: I've fallen in love with electrocuting myself. Gently. When I have injured some part of myself. Yes, I am talking about using TENS units. You can buy these little devices that send a low current through your injured muscles. Not only does my... Continue reading
Posted Jun 5, 2022 at Meditation/mindfulness
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Musician people, I am curious about the origins of these two songs. If you play the audio, (clink on the bars to do so below) I have one sung by my late stepfather Mike Wadyko, and one sung by my mom, also recently deceased, Judy Wadyko. I found an audio... Continue reading
Posted Jun 5, 2022 at Genealogy/family
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So for now it seems like a good idea to just eat your fruits and vegetables,drink tea and/or coffee (with or without caffeine) and put your favorite cooking spices and herbs on your food to flavor it. I would definitely skip the antioxidant supplements. To be clear, antioxidants can overlap with other categories, like vitamins and anti-inflammatories, and there are sometimes very good reasons to take certain vitamins and anti-inflammatories. Continue reading
Posted May 27, 2022 at Medicine/fitness
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So for now it seems like a good idea to just eat your fruits and vegetables,drink tea and/or coffee (with or without caffeine) and put your favorite cooking spices and herbs on your food to flavor it. I would definitely skip the antioxidant supplements. To be clear, antioxidants can overlap with other categories, like vitamins and anti-inflammatories, and there are sometimes very good reasons to take certain vitamins and anti-inflammatories. Continue reading
Posted May 27, 2022 at Plants
Said the author of this site with dismay. If you are looking for my more recent posts, please go to my main author website. Thanks! Continue reading
Posted May 27, 2022 at Herbs Demystified
Want to knit stronger neurons? Crafts can help. Being in the zone, or a state of flow is the latest positive psychology terminology for having energized focus, full involvement and enjoyment. Although it is an ancient idea, entire books are now being written on this rather specific state of mind. Certain tasks may enable you to reach a state of flow. I propose that it is good brain exercise. Being in the flow is good for us. What puts you in a state of flow? Continue reading
Posted May 19, 2022 at Medicine/fitness
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Some people may be tempted to buy brain training programs. My mom hears the advertisements and keeps asking me about whether they will help her. Here are some alternatives backed up by research. Continue reading
Posted May 19, 2022 at Medicine/fitness
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Some people may be tempted to buy brain training programs. My mom hears the advertisements and keeps asking me about whether they will help her. Here are some alternatives backed up by research. Continue reading
Posted May 19, 2022 at Meditation/mindfulness
Want to knit stronger neurons? Crafts can help. Being in the zone, or a state of flow is the latest positive psychology terminology for having energized focus, full involvement and enjoyment. Although it is an ancient idea, entire books are now being written on this rather specific state of mind. Certain tasks may enable you to reach a state of flow. I propose that it is good brain exercise. Being in the flow is good for us. What puts you in a state of flow? Continue reading
Posted May 19, 2022 at Meditation/mindfulness