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Monday, May 27, 2013

Destination: Major Fun at the Packwood Flea Market! By Katherine A. Carroll, NTP, Associate Editor, Health Freedom News

Okay. I admit it…Adytum Sanctuary  has been up and running 6 ½ years now and I've never been to the infamous Packwood Flea Market in the great Pacific Northwest held every Memorial and Labor Day weekend. Plenty of our guests have been and we’ve always been busy working. 

Off We Go!

We had a couple celebrating their 5th anniversary in the Star of the North
and 3 fun-loving women in the Orion Suite who were attending Mark Bolender’s horse event which entailed going through a challenging obstacle course.  Despite  Adytum Sanctuary  being booked,  we pursued our own fun and found out some of our guests had beat us there! 

People come from all over the States to experience this particular flea market. Massachusetts, West Texas, Eastern Washington… they were there, hundreds of them, so many that the internet and phone services were overwhelmed and shut down.  We drove 40 minutes in steady rain, past the logging town of Morton where our optometry clinic, Medical Vision Center  is located.

Medical Vision Center and Nutritional Visions Natural Health Center in Morton, Washington

You have to realize, Packwood is the end of the line.,_Washington  
If you want to be buried the country, move to Packwood. I have a friend, an ex-General in the army who spoke daily with a past President. He resides in Packwood bordering Gifford Pinchot forest land on a compound that is impregnable. So this tells us something about the kinds of people who locate here… On one end of the spectrum, think rugged individualist with a high-powered gun and you have capsulized Packwood in a nutshell and on the other end of the same spectrum, those live there who crave deep peace and an escape from the World. For many, Packwood is a second vacation home site.  
Into the heart of the Ancients....
Passing Packwood you can catch the Grove of the Patriarchs, a must-see as you sense your frail humanity being dwarfed by these Ancients.  As you head left at the Y in the road and run into  Ohanapecosh  where we followed a herd of elk and a lone bear last Spring, past neglected hot springs and an old resort from the 1920s where people came to take the waters.

Heading farther on the right of the Y you encounter White Pass Ski Resort in 30 minutes. Here I learned to cross country ski, foregoing skiing in their million dollar chairlift and lodge expansion at the top of the mountain. Yakima is about an hour and a half still and has wineries you’ve surely read about along with Walla Walla farther still up the highway. But back to Packwood for some fun!
Something Old....

There are new things for sale and old things for sale at the Packwood Flea Market with every walk of life coalesced to buy them and nearly everyone with something to eat in their hand -simply hundreds of people invading Packwood, the colorful little town at the foot of the mountains. It’s a beautiful day here at least unlike 'winter hanging on' which we drove through . 

Quintessential Late Spring Day in Packwood, Washington

The pure white clouds are big and puffy matching fresh snow topping the mountains. The air is about 65 degrees. The hills are verdant with new spring growth. It is truly the quintessential late Spring day as I step into the Child-zone.

"I spent the first half of life learning to become a man. I will spend the second half learning to become a child." Picasso.

It could have been a dog parade instead of a flea market that we've come to see with every variety of mut and purebred represented, leashed and getting along perfectly!

We Fell In Love With the Great Dane
We stopped by Betty’s art gallery and checked out her fresh inventory then dipped into several  antique stores which immediately met our noses with the musty smell of ancient possessions and long-since forgotten tools and ways of being. Later, we climbed the steps to the historic Packwood motel; tiny, quaint and with an amazing bear skin on the wall which took us back to the early 1900’s.
Let the Fantasy Begin!
I've always loved this town because it has character and a distinct flavor all its own.  Packwood takes you away from the City and all of your cares, into the present moment life of a Child, to be sure, and the mountains of rough black stone which line the highway, the giant Fir, the lush meadows, and wide open sky which rival anything Montana boasts is seriously breathtaking. No wonder we always see hundreds of elk here

Packwood is found after passing ‘Big Bottom’ country along the way, so named because the Cowlitz River,  which we view from Adytum Sanctuary as frigid emerald green water, accelerates its initial flow through a lush, flat valley full of horses and cattle.
Through the Rain...Lush Meadows of Big Bottom Country

Yes, too, there is a correlation among some of the inhabitants, I confess, to this unfortunate ‘big bottom’ name and the 'party' food at the Flea Market didn’t help things.
Party Food!

We crawl through town bumper to bumper 5 miles an hour. While we’ve seen vast herds of elk in the past, now we see a carnival atmosphere and they have escaped to the high country. $5 for parking and we’re walking under an unexpectedly blue sky with Cottonwood tree fluff blowing like snow on a late Spring breeze. The air is scented with my favorite Caramel corn sweetness which seems to typify fairs and carnivals.

 I’m continually struck by the amount of dogs of all sizes on leashes in various tutus and polka dotted sweaters as I am seeming miles of stands and concessions in this sleepy little forest gem.
Doggie Fashion Extravaganza in Packwood, Washington

God was smiling on Packwood today because the coat I brought was left in Donn’s Raptor and we walked in sunshine and 65 degrees. When we left a few hours later, following a solid caravan of cars and motorcycles down the road west to eat dinner at Plaza Jalisco for our favorite Spanish omelette with rancho beans , the rain was still pouring earnestly…

Heading Back to Adytum Sanctuary in Showers

we were in a magical pocket of sun and fun- and it was! Donn said, “I love the way you always get so excited…” as I took picture after picture and spoke my impressions for later writing into the Evernote on the iPhone.

Packwood’s transformation into a fantasy of fun was marked with the painted faces of starry-eyed children, wispy cotton candy, snow cones with bright blue syrup, corn dogs, elephant ears, fried apple slices on a skewer dripping with a sugary syrup, beer gardens, Cowboy BBQs, pulled pork, and every imaginable variation- even Thai food at the base of a Pacific Northwest Mountain.
Guess He Doesn't Have Kids...We Were The Recruits in the 60's

We passed an ice cream stand with a John Deere motor powering two large “hand-cranked” homemade ice cream machines. We walked forever before we found ONE single healthy option…savory nuts. (Note: there is a wide-open market for healthy foods at these things…where are the entrepreneurs who will create some healthy options in a carnival setting? Find a need and fill it….the secret to success!!! How about coconut water, iced green tea, kombucha, coconut ice cream made with stevia, RAW savory nuts, dehydrated kale chips, dried fruit from Yakima, wine from Walla Walla, and raw chocolate (Donn’s original creation- and to die for- is at the end of this blog…)
Donn Speaking with Ed English and Grandsons, Wife Sue in the Background

The creativity at this market was truly amazing. Some of our favorites were Ed English’s bonsai and a company in Yakima making wine barrel chairs, wine racks, and dog beds. There was a chair made with old skis and so much more you will see in the slideshow.

The sweet scent of kettle corn, BBQ, hot dogs and fries mix with wood smoke, Fir, and fresh mountain air reminding me of every fair and camping trip I ever went on as a child. Every dog that has ever been left at home is here today and dogs for sale too.  Dogs with purple and rose colored pom poms and dogs in polka dotted sweaters; dogs who were dog- tired and sleeping on the sidewalk with their tongues hanging out
Dog Tired, To Be Sure...

and large puppies who were clearly in need of a nap. Dogs so big a child might mistake them for the Christmas pony. And strangely, no dog poop! I dodged spit in Beijing and in Packwood, there was some restraint among our animal friends in effect evidently.

I haven’t been inside anything like this in ages…a little like walking through the distortion fun-houses at the annual County Fair. To see a carnival in the pristine wilderness was disconcerting but somehow magically fun at the same time, enough to make me want to go again in September….
Remember These?

The flea market is a contrast between reminisces from childhood: old games  you played like Chinese Checkers, hardcover detective books secretly read in bed after lights out,  cherry tobacco in a pipe stand like the one Grandfather had near his favorite chair juxtaposed between possibilities of the future like meeting a Great Dane and learning what a wonderful family dog they are and falling in love…
Oh Baby!

unexpectedly opening your heart up to possibly having one and a greenhouse too…all more work, yes I know…but kind of irresistible at the same time in this enchanted setting.

We talked to Wayne,  in his 60’s, about buying a greenhouse and got an unexpected lesson in medical marijuana laws and  growers in Oregon who buy from him keeping their operations top secret not letting the greenhouse delivery trucks go up the road all the way to their clandestine sites. He told a sweetly corny joke as we said goodbye...What I thought was all about the past, going to this flea market, turned out to be about the future too because we’ve been talking about having a greenhouse at Adytum for years and will accept delivery shortly on ours. Year-round kale (and kale chips) now…
Adytum Sanctuary Garden Will Have The Biggest One In Hopes Of Increased Self-Sufficiency

Donn was looking for one vendor’s site in particular…a friend of his who does bonsai, Ed English We walked down every alley way- and there were many as this market which goes on and on and on…and finally at the end of one side of the very long street we found  him! His was the best site by far, even though we had passed antique horse-drawn buggies, ancient tractor toys for kids to ride on, an accordion, a unicycle, crossbows, Samurai swords, and knives, and so much more outrageous and interesting stuff.
2013 Raptor vs. Buggy- Take Your Pick

Ed had been to China in the 60’s and told a story of dating a woman when he was 17. She wore a traditional kimono. During their walk into town on their first date, she said in polite Chinese, “Excuse me…” and stepped off a few paces, hiked up her kimono, and peed on the side of the road to his astonishment. Wish I’d have thought to ask how that date ended… I was sharing with Ed and his wife, Sue, about my recent trip to attend Codex Alimentarius’ meeting on food additives in Beijing, China and seeing glamorous, exquisitely beautiful women raising their white surgical masks to spit on the sidewalk (which I spent much of my time dodging…) Things are different here in America but admittedly I didn’t see the obesity in China either so take your pick of things you’d like to dodge.
The Dragon King with the World In His Grasp...

I had passed all the food stands and all the vendor stalls with my wallet intact but succumbed to Ed’s red soapstone Foo Dogs, Chinese Dragon, and a gong; estate items left when a Chinese national’s parents died. I will treasure them as I treasure learning to love Beijing despite its roughness.
I Loved Watching This Little Emperor Getting Photographed at the Silk Market In China, 2013 

China carved a big place in my heart to be sure and I anticipate going back in March for the next Codex  meeting where Scott Tips, President of the National Health Federation, myself, and the rest of the NHF team will protect your health and health freedoms. Scott Tips, also FDA specialist attorney, spoke no fewer than a half a dozen times to reduce aluminum in our food and beverage supplies by 50% and completely eliminate it in others. (Aluminum is in sauces, hot cocoa, biscuits, pancake, bread, and muffin mixes, frozen pizza, etc.
NHF President Scott Tips Speaks for YOU at Codex Alimentarius Where Standards Are Set For What YOU Eat and Drink

 Note to past guests: if you see large blocks of time removed from availability from Adytum’s booking calendar, please call me at 360.790.2011 (cell) and most likely you can still enjoy Adytum in my absence; Donn will be there to let you in!
300 Year Old Bonsai, Front Right Lower Corner

Ed had a 300 year old Bonsai I’d have loved to have purchased. It was taken from the 6000 feet level of a nearby mountain and was buried in a rock. He was able to secure it with the tap root intact and it’s remarkably beautiful today evoking strength and longevity. He had bonsai in maple burl bowls that looked like stone. You won't see anything like this anywhere else, I guarantee you. The creativity of this man is admirable and he reads and researches bonsai and Chinese history and dates questionable women (:  (sorry Ed, couldn’t resist!! Sue, you escaped that comment!!)
Puff The Magic Dragon....

A flea market becomes a metaphor for the passage of your life in eras held in the shape of the possessions you no longer possess but which are now woven into the fiber of your being to shape and mold you and live forever in memory. Katherine A. Carroll

The Labor Day Packwood Flea Market is even bigger than this one! I can’t imagine. Adytum Sanctuary is filled with the treasures of travels but now it holds local fun and a memory I will never forget- the first of many Packwood Flea Markets.

An Adytum Original created by sometimes Chef, Donn Carroll, OD

Mix in food processor the following:

12 TBS raw cacao nibs made coarse or fine in a coffee grinder (
3 TBS Almond butter
2 TBS Sesame butter (Tahini)
2 TBS Pure Synergy Superfood ( optional
1 TBS Tocotrienols (
1 TBS Carob powder
3 Squirts of Omica Stevia toffee flavored (
1 TBS honey
Pinch of sea salt

Heat 1 cup of coconut oil into liquid oil on low, then pour into food processor and mix with the rest of the ingredients.

Pour into soft molds then refrigerate for at least 1/2 hour before serving.

Optional:  Add raspberry jam as topping when serving.  Sprinkle raw unsweetened coconut in mold before adding the cacao/coconut oil mixture.

You can make the basic recipe with just the cacao, coconut oil, and a sweetener like stevia then experiment with any of the other ingredients to your taste.  My favorite is with Tahini.

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