Thursday, July 29, 2010


Whisk together:
1/3 cup whole wheat pastry flour
2/3 cup white whole wheat flour
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup water 
Drizzle in:
2 Tbs butter 
1/4 tsp salt

For the syrup 
Mix and heat:
3 Tbs plum jam
3 Tbs lemon curd
1 Tbs lemon juice

Make crepes. 
Fill with:
2 Tbs heated spiced apple sauce
Dress with 1 Tbs syrup.
Makes six crepes. 

Sunday, July 25, 2010

We have chickens!

The chicken tractor is now populated with three hens: Buffy, Willow, and Anya. Buffy is the solid, golden chicken and is a Buff Orpington, Willow is the black headed Golden Wyandotte and Anya is the fluffy, gold-headed Ameraucana.

Thanks so much to Tanya Clapshaw for the chickens!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Awesome product: Bar Keepers Friend

We hung up some pots to free up cabinet space. They looked a little shabby with stains on the bottom. So I got a lesson from my wife in how to use Bar Keepers Friend.I think they look much better after.

For routine clean up it is a pretty quick job. Wet. Sprinkle. Rub. Rinse.
For these pots it took several passes and some elbow grease.
I took a close up of one of the worst stains to see how much I could get out.

Here is what they looked like before working on them.

I think they look much better after.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Roasted onions

Had a nice day today with friends cooking of the fire.

We roasted some onions in the coals...
Then peeled the skins and cut them into various shapes, added some spices and balsamic vinegar.

Pretty tasty.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Food fun

some culinary dabbling...

Making the most of California summer fruit.

Fruit salad of strawberries dusted with a little sugar, peach, apricot, and strawberry yogurt.

We had some eggs and frozen veggies that needed to be use up so I decided to make a frittata.

Smoked Salmon, spinach, white corn, asiago, Duke's powder II, 8 eggs, milk, semolina flour.

Lawn solarization

While cleaning the bird cage, we had parts out on the front lawn to be pressure washed.
One of the items was a clear heavy plastic sheet we keep on the floor under the cage.
We washed one side then let it dry a little. Later, we flipped it over and washed the other side
and let it dry. Then we packed it all up and put it in the POD for the move.

Later that day we noticed two dark patches in the lawn where the plastic had been. The next day they were completely brown and the lawn was dead. I'd heard of doing this with black plastic, but was surprised how "effective" it was at killing the lawn with a clear sheet.

Too much stuff

After 20 years of mathematical software engineering I retired last week.
Since then I have been contending with all of the stuff we have accumulated during the years to pack for our move up to Portland.
I find myself vacillating between "why do I have this, I should chuck it" and "we already have it and may use it someday". I'm not sure quite what it would look like to have a balance between having enough and not having too much. Seems like it should be easier to recognize.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Do gardens feel?

I was listening to a podcast about happiness today that was discussing various nuances of happiness: ease, peace, joy, ..., I got to thinking that many of these or their antitheses could be applied to a garden -- at least by analogy.
What other emotions might we extend to a garden?
  • Affection
  • Anger, Annoyance, Angst, Apathy, Anxiety
  • Contempt, Curiosity
  • Depression, Desire, Despair, Disappointment, Disgust
  • Ecstasy, Empathy, Envy, Embarrassment, Euphoria
  • Fear, Frustration
  • Gratitude, Grief, Guilt
  • Happiness, Hatred, Hope, Horror, Hostility, Hysteria
  • Interest, Jealousy
  • Loathing, Love, Lust
  • Misery, Pity, Pride
  • Rage, Regret, Remorse
  • Sadness, Shame, Suffering, Surprise
  • Wonder, Worry
I am not suggesting that there are literally emotions, but rather that asking the question "what is my garden feeling right now?" Might lead to a helpful line of thinking. Some of them don't really seem likely -- when would a garden feel rage? I hope I never find out. ;-)