Hello to all,

Dayang Yolanda Stern just signed the papers for our next shipment to the Philippines, which will make something like 13,200 wheelchairs our incredible team has delivered to that nation as the partner of Free Wheelchair Mission; and added to the 1,650 to Cambodia with their recent shipment, that makes around 15,000 free wheelchairs that have gone to the poorest of the poor.

It is a milestone that calls for CELEBRATION and RECOGNITION of the astounding work you have all done.

Seriously. Take a moment to imagine the amount of suffering relieved by a single wheelchair; and then multiply it 15,000 that mental exercise and faintly grasp the scope of what you have done. Including the attendant pushing, I figure it would make a train 16 miles long. Breathtaking!

I am celebrating! And I am deeply grateful for the remarkable work you have done, which began with a single request for a single wheelchair, soon coupled to an idea which grew with the nurturing of each volunteer. Remarkable.

Our goal of reaching 25,000 units, once a pipe-dream, now is in view. I know we can do it. We will do it.

Please circulate this report to your mailing list because we need to become known to grow.

Again, thanks to everyone.

Tom Stern,MD

Chairman of the Board

One World Institute

A Yoga Class From The Heart - January 30th

If anybody is interested, please register now at, as space is very limited due to very enthusiastic response!

Check out details at :

Ya Complete

MASTERS OF THE AIR [via Nina Reznick]

Biologist Doug Altshuler has turned his lab into a kind of hummingbird training center, where he can test the limits of their aerial agility. The key, he says, is hovering.

Antonym, n.: The opposite of the word you're trying to think of. - Unknown via Michael A. Simpson

BIRD BEAUTY [via Nina Reznick]

Half a Lifetime Spent in Pursuit of Waterbirds

Two weeks later, the unexpected happened: a Ross’s gull showed up in Baltimore. Thousands of birders converged on the spot for the rare sighting.

“They call it the bird that launched 20,000 binoculars,” Mr. Cross said.

Audio Slide Show

Birds of Courage

His 344-page volume, “Waterbirds” (W. W. Norton & Company), is part visual encyclopedia, part memoir of a nearly half-century pursuit of birds. In intimate portraits of birds, like tiny sandpipers and the “flying boxcar” of a bar-tailed godwit, and in personal anecdotes of his birding adventures, Mr. Cross, 85, describes how he spent the first half of his life oblivious to birds only to become one of their most ardent photographers and advocates in the second half. Now, he writes, “the memories of them help me accept the brevity of the time that lies ahead.”

Among his favorites are the roseate spoonbill, which was hunted to near extinction a century ago for pink plumes to adorn women’s hats, but has been making a comeback.

The red-tailed tropicbird of Christmas Island is known for its acrobatics. At midday Mr. Cross said, “they take to the air and engage in unbelievable pirouettes, somersaults in a deafening clatter of noise.”

The bar-tailed godwit flies 6,800 miles each year from Alaska to New Zealand without food, water or rest in what Mr. Cross calls “one of nature’s miracles.” And the semipalmated sandpiper, small enough to fit into a teacup, migrates between South America and the Arctic, “through gales and hurricanes, over mountains and ocean.”

“Birds are very much like people in some ways,” Mr. Cross said. “The reddish egret will pretend it’s leaving its nest, the way humans sometimes pretend they’ve lost interest in a boyfriend or girlfriend. But sure enough, they’re going to come back.”

The white tern is incredibly friendly. “If you visit any island in the South Pacific,” he said, “a dozen or more of these little guys will come out and greet you.”

Mr. Cross hopes someday to capture the perfect picture, which he describes as “two reddish egrets in courtship with their fantastic feathers flared up and pointed to the sky.”

"There are three rules for writing the novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are."-- W. Somerset Maugham via Michael A. Simpson


Napaman’s Best Wines of the Year!

And nearly half of them were not from Napa Valley.
Check out my favorite wines of the year.

If there is any thing to be learned from the list, it is that they are listed in an order which relates to how these wines surprised me and from which I had no expectation. And then BWAM!... poured from the bottle, these wines overwhelmed me for their sensuality, elegance, balance, harmony and overall achievement.

Dear Ken,

On behalf of Nik Halik and the Financial Freedom Institute Team, we would like to send our christmas message of peace, joy and love to you and your family for a safe holiday season and a happy, prosperous new year.

We thank you for your support during 2009 and look forward to being of greater service to you in 2010.

We would like to take this opportunity to advise you that our office will be closed over the festive season as of 5pm on Wednesday 23th December 2009 and will reopen at 11am Monday 11th January 2010.

Nik's The Thrillionaires® network has come up with this small video to help inspire greatness for the year ahead.

All the very best.

Yours in prosperity,

The Financial Freedom Institute Team