Wednesday, December 29, 2010


Licensed photo...DO NOT COPY.
Title: Maya Calendar
Description: Artifact of Maya Calendar in a sunray

-----2011. Filming will start on a biopic with Sacha Baron Cohen as Freddie Mercury. I just do not see this as being able to be done well. I hope that Mr. Cohen does not do his own vocals....whether he would be good at them or not-it reminds me of La Bamba where many people now think of sounds other than the real Ritchie Valens.
-----2011. Six Flags Amusement Parks 50th Anniversary Celebration. I plan to go to at least part of it.
-----March 22,2011....the book "A Chicken in Every Yard" comes out. It can be pre-ordered now at
-----March 20-27, 2011. World Championships in Ski Orienteering. Tänndalen,Sweden.
-----May 26-29, 2011. Pheonix Comicon. Leonard Nimoy will be there on Saturday.
-----MasterChef (USA) has been renewed for a second season. I do not know when that season will start.

2011 Calendars:



Tuesday, December 28, 2010


"He not busy being born is busy dying."
-Bob Dylan

"When we were children we used to think that when we grew up we would no longer be vulnerable. But to grow up is to accept vulnerability. To be alive is to be vulnerable."
-- Madeleine L'Engle

"I'd take the awe of understanding over the awe of ignorance any day."
-Douglas Adams

TSA (and such).

-----A man who was about to carry a loaded gun on an airplane has been indicted. I guess you could forget that such a gun was there if it was something you were used to carrying. I am not sure how one would prove that this man stole the gun...with a theft occurring so long ago (unless the original owner has something to say about the matter).
-----Pilot points out that security might be lax in some parts of the airport.
-----This lady made her own body scanner (video).
-----Staying at a hotel with a Peekaboo bathroom does not offer much privacy.
-----Elton John and his husband have adopted a little boy.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Adding to the "(I've) Never Cooked with List."

Licensed Photo. "Farmhouse Fireplace" Taken by Roger Kirby.

A list of things that I have never cooked with (but intend to try).

I have never cooked with:
-----Almond milk (reportedly Michael Jackson had it with granola for breakfast)
-----Arrowroot powder
-----Barley Malt Syrup. The best way to use it is along with other natural sweeteners...I do not know what sweeteners I will use it with yet.
-----Bay scallops...or any scallops. Some of the people on Hell's Kitchen make cooking scallops seem like rocket science.
-----Bean sprouts. I have eaten them. Ham and Bean Sprout Salad sounds interesting.
-----Black sesame seeds. I have seen these mentioned many times and I am really eager to try them.
-----Cashew butter
-----Chevre (goat's cheese)
-----Chipotle Tabasco
-----Curry Powder
-----Dark sesame oil. I have cooked with regular sesame oil. When I try cooking with the dark sesame oil, I will look up several recipes (as sesame oil can go rancid quickly).
-----Dry mustard. I now use dried mustard on a regular basis. 
-----Enoki mushrooms.Mild.Crunch. Used for soups and stir fries.
-----Fennel. Fresh fennel....I use the dried at times.
-----Fried squash blossoms
-----Frozen ramen
-----Garlic Tabasco
-----Ground Szechuan peppercorns
-----Halloumi Cheese
-----Haricot Vert. French green beans. We will eventually be growing Haricot Vert. to make Harissa Grilled Halibut with Grilled Red Pepper Harissa
-----Hoisin sauce. My first recipe candidate for cooking with hoison sauce is Salmon Summer Rolls with Dipping Sauce.....that way I get to learn to use the rice paper for rolling, too. I am also interested in this Beef and Green Bean Stir-fry ( I sometimes break my soy taboo and use a little soy sauce).
-----Hotel Bar butter. Part of New York cuisine for over a century.
-----Katsoubushi (dried bonito flakes). Bonito flakes are bits of dried bonito fish and they look like wood shavings. They are perfectly edible by humans....but in the United States some companies sell them as cat treats (I do not want to eat the cat treats). Bonito is a type of tuna.
-----Kelp.Supposed to increase thyroid function...and I have thyroid problems.There are some kelp items I will be trying in addition to any recipes.
-----Leeks. I will be making Julia Child's Potage Parmentier (Potato and Leek Soup). Apparently, you can add green beans to Potage Parmentier....I will likely not like that as I DETEST POTATO SOUP WITH GREEN BEANS IN IT.
-----Lilacs. I want to learn the different ways they are edible.
-----Linguica. I don't know about this one. It will depend on the consistency. I do not eat a lot of pork things...partly because they sometimes make me sick.
-----Maltitol Syrup. A sugar-free corn syrup substitute. 90% as sweet as sugar with about half the calories.
-----Mirin. A former co-worker was surprised that I know what it is. 
-----Muscovado Sugar
-----Nori. I have now tried my first Nori independent of California Rolls rolls. It looked like a papery-green-jerky strip and reminded me of fish skin. I liked it.
-----Peanut oil. I would also like to cook with roasted peanut oil.
-----Pickled ginger. I have eaten it...just e never cooked with it myself.
-----Pine Nuts (never tasted one)
-----Pomegranate Molasses.
-----Powdered peanut butter. It has a lot of possible uses...sprinkled as a flavoring on or in a lot of things. I want to use it in a stir fry...perhaps Kung Pao Chicken.
-----Saigon cinnamon
-----Salsify  Rich and Creamy Salsify Gratin
-----Sansho pepper (Japanese pepper seedpods)
-----Sesame Seeds
-----Sherry Wine Vinegar
-----Shimeji mushrooms. Have to be cooked....otherwise are bitter.
-----Soba Noodles. I have had them...but have not cooked them myself. 
-----Sorrel. I have seen empty pegs for sorrel in the refrigerated,fresh herbs at HyVee. This is an ingredient that one has to research how much to cook with...I have read that small quantities are harmless but that large quantities can be fatal. Sorrel has been cultivated for centuries.
-----Squid. I love to eat it.....but NOT pickled. Ditto for octopus on not having cooked and the same eating preferences as the squid.
-----Star Anise. Perhaps I will make the Haitian recipe Akasan.
-----Sweet Bean Paste
-----Tahini. Tomato Salad with Tahini Sauce....talks about eating it during Ramadan (I am assuming during the non-fasting hours).
-----Tamarind paste
-----Tarragon Wine Vinegar
-----Tobanjan (Chinese chili paste)
-----Wakame. If I figured a way to grow it, I would be careful since Wakame is invasive.
-----Wood ear mushrooms. My first cooking with Wood Ear Mushrooms will likely be Chicken and Wood Ear Mushroom Soup. The Chicken and Wood Ear Mushroom Soup uses peanut oil (which I have not cooked with yet).
Lithuanian Potato Salad

Chinese Spaghetti (and similar).

-----Calorie Watcher's Chinese Chicken with Spaghetti
-----Spaghetti-Chinese Style
-----Chinese Spaghetti
-----Chinese Fried Noodles
-----Cold Chinese Noodles with Sesame Sauce
-----Highland Chinese Food
-----Chinese Carbonara. I am not sure what is met by a can of luncheon meat...I did think of Spam. @vomviersen thinks that it must be Spam or Treet. I have never had Treet and I am not sure if I have seen it at the store.

Paws Helping Paws. Buy a dog or cat toy, and this company donates food to an animal shelter.
GE will finish cleaning Hudson River Superfund site.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

In My Life....

-----Doggie must have figured out there is nothing for her in the closet where I keep my books that I have no room for and holiday things. Usually, every time I open the door, she tries to see what there is to get into. I guess a bunch of boxes is boring...that's a first.
-----Cool. Maker's Mark sends me a Christmas present every year (I am an ambassador). This year it was a set of ice cube put a big ball like a Christmas ornament in the middle of one's bourbon.
Alta Vista likely to end (after 15 years). I remember using Alta Vista a lot when it first came out...but seldom do I ever use it now.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Thursday Thirteen....

States with Kroger-operated stores included in the recall are Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and West Virginia.

2. How the Tiger Woods saga should have been treated.


I think the photos are colorful and full of life. I enjoy any blog that does good coverage of recipes. :-)

4. The Glamorous Life of a Housewife

5. Things I learned this week:
---The colors "ocher" and "ochre" are the same.
---There is a Holiday Tweet Drive. This collects new toys and clothing...which then go to shelters and charities in the cities that the events are hosted in. If this drive is repeated next year, I will try to volunteer.
---The scary fish in "Finding Nemo" has some scary mating habits.

6. Peanut Butter Pappardelle with Blueberry and Black Cherry Sauce. Garnished with Bacon and Toasted Nuts. An unconventional peanut butter and jelly. U haven't been able to find very many unusual treatments of pappardelle online and I like de-constructed dishes.

7. An issue I do not know anything about....but need to start reading on:
"Hello all, we need your support to help get the Armenian Genocide recognized in the US. Please call (202) 225-0100 to ask Speaker Pelosi to schedule a vote on the Armenian Genocide Resolution, HRes252."
Peace, Serj  
(System of a Down)

8. Concern Worldwide..."working with the world's poorest people to transform their lives."

9. Bret Michaels is finally engaged.

10. Carrie Brown Foundation. Carrie was a little girl who died in an auto accident on her way home from the first day of eighth grade.

11. I enjoy watching the various webcams of the firefoxes that Mozilla has up.

12. The trailer for the zombie movie "Collapse"  is out! Husband got to be a part of the Special Makeup FX crew for this film.


This post is a work in progress. :-)

-----HSBC accused of aiding Bernard Madoff. Apparently, JPMorgan Chase is also being sued.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

-----The men had the distinction of being the worst performing Blue Team ever.
-----Nona has one of the best palettes in Hell's Kitchen history? In any case, Nona is who I was cheering for. I have only found 1 person online was cheering for Russell (and they were only kind of doing so).
-----The "most combative" season of Hell's Kitchen ever. Note that "competitive" was not the word used. Russell certainly did his share of adding to the combative atmosphere throughout the season.
-----Southern cooking in Los Angeles? That sounds like a nice fusion if it is done just right.
-----Nona made some sacrifices to be on this show.
-----Obviously, it has likely been said many times before, but it is apt that Russell's last name is "Kook"...if you choose to pronounce this as "cook" and not as someone who is a bit crazy. Smart alecs may make a joke about him being a kook (as in crazy). I do not actually know how Russell's last name is pronounced.
-----The amount of raw food on this show puzzles me. I can see burning things...if you cook a lot that statistically happens (I find it is often due to something being wrong with the stove). Perhaps the stress is just so great that people are pressured to try to cut cooking times short???

In My Life....

-----The people in Cambodia whose business I have given a Kiva loan to are a little bit behind in repayment. I hope that things go well for them. I have continually re-invested the same $25 dollar Kiva gift certificate that I won. No one has defaulted on this...and I received it in February 2008!
-----Continuing to offer feedback on Firefox 4.0 Beta 7. I see that praise and issues are pretty close to each other....not sure if this is good or bad.
-----You know you have Raynaud's Phenomenon when your ears are so cold after taking the dog out to potty that you tie your scarf around them. I spent parts of my day looking like a cross between Snoop Dogg and Rabbit from Winnie-the-Pooh. When this started, it was 21 degrees out and 20 is about where I start having problems. Doggie thought my headgear was scary.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Lawyer imagines Abraham on trial.

Straight Out of the Camera Sunday....

The reason for the photo was because Blue Bunny had given me a coupon for free ice cream. I could not get my phone to do anything other than black-and-white at the time.
---The same kind of ice cream we have in the freezer now....Butter Pecan. We are going to use this to make Ice Cream Bread. 
---When done with the Blue Bunny, we use the containers to give an extra layer of protection to things in the freezer (particularly bags of frozen vegetables). The containers are much better at keeping ice crystals out than any ice cream we have tried.

Our friend Thom's gargoyles ready to be cast. Another cell phone photo.

Another Decatur (Illinois) sunset. Accompanying a friend to see if their band was right for a venue. The cell phone's color settings were finally figured out.


Saturday, December 11, 2010

Saturday 6 Meme.....

Name 6 of your favorite Cartoon Characters from the 80′s and 90′s?



Firestar (The Amazing Spiderman and Friends)


Rocky (Rocky & Bullwinkle)

Rocky: Hey Bullwinkle, we're in real trouble now!
Bullwinkle: Oh good, Rocky! I hate that artificial kind!


El Kabong (The Quick Draw McGraw Show)



Snarf (Thundercats)

Future home of my cookbooks.
In this photo is my Snarf that I rescued when someone (an adult) decided that they had outgrown all toys.

Participate in Saturday 6. :-)
A quest to like Upside-Down Christmas trees. I have never seen an Upside-Down Christmas Tree that I was really a fan of.
Rolaids has a major recall.
Tequila Sunset

Friday, December 10, 2010

We are on a very limited budget, so my plan is for us to make a substitute pizza stone out of unglazed quarry tiles. I have read through further notes on this on Chowhound. To be safe, no matter what the labels for the tile say, we will likely use a lead tester. I don't know if this is true, but I read that Julia Child used tiles to cook pizza.

A Marijuana Christmas.....

-----German police seize a 6-foot tall marijuana plant decorated as a Christmas tree.
-----Getting 110-pounds of marijuana from Santa?
-----Drug-filled Advent Calendar.

Ginger and Vinegar :-)

Licensed  photo. Photo by PR Raven
-----Ginger Vinegar
-----Ginger Vinegar Sauce
-----Geung Chou (Ginger Vinegar). This is a soup that women in Hong Kong consume post-partum.
-----Asian Vinaigrette with Ginger Vinegar (Wolfgang Puck). All you have to do is mix the ingredients together and shake well before use.
-----Green Tea Chicken Dumplings with Chilli Oil, Orange and Ginger Vinegar.  Junior MasterChef Australia
-----Oysters with Chilli, Ginger and Rice Wine Vinegar. Jamie Oliver. It looks aesthetically-pleasing dish to serve.
-----Asian-Flavored Coleslaw with Rice Vinegar and Ginger. Goes well with seared or grilled scallops, fish fillets or chicken.

Friday Fill-In.....

This week, we had a choice of fill-ins OR a different kind of fill-in (or both). On the second part, you have to identify Christmas songs by the initials of the first words of the first line of each song. Each Friday until Christmas Eve the meme will include 9 more of these songs. :-)!

1. I wish _____.
I try not to wish...more to hope. I hope my Raynaud's Phenomenon goes away-I am sitting with a blanket over my legs right now. I hope I come up with a strategy to save money on toilet paper. I hope that Husband can start on some of my snowmen this weekend (what I want for Christmas-I can't touch the snow and it is a cost-free gift).

2. _____...that's what I'm thinking.
We need to get my Christmas wreath moved to where I want it for the holidays.

3. Please bring _____.
my bottle of wine. I won a nice bottle of wine awhile back and it has not arrived yet.

4. _____ is so amazing.
Cornerstone Festival. I am going in 2011. A large Christian music (and art) festival. The first confirmed band is Flatfoot 56 (a Celtic,Punk band).

5. One of my fondest hopes _____.
To get back into an actual classroom environment...vs. online or MIT OpenCourseWare.

6. _____ and I just wanted to say thank you
Husband is very caring

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to _____, tomorrow my plans include _____ and Sunday, I want to _____!
Tonight-Walking outdoors if it is not too cold.
Tomorrow-Playing XBOX w/Husband....I am not very good at games.



Last week's answers:

1. HYAMLC: have yourself a merry little christmas
2. TFNTADS: the first noel the angels did say
3. GRYMGLNYD: god rest ye merry gentleman let nothing you dismay
4. ICUAMC: it came upon a midnight clear
5. SNHNAICAIB: silent night holy night all is calm all is bright
6. OTFDOCMTLGTM: on the first day of christmas my true love gave to me
7. DTHWBOHFLLLLLLLL: deck the halls with boughs of holly fa la la la la la la la la
8. YBWOYBNC: you better watch out you better not cry
9. JTTWTLHC: joy to the world the lord has come


Wednesday, December 08, 2010

-----A young woman who was struck in the head by flying debris from a car accident has died.
-----A fourth video of a U.S. soldier captured in Afghanistan has been released. I hope that this soldier is still alive.
-----Body of fallen soldier is returned to Maine. It is sad that he was killed by someone who should have been trust-worthy. I would assume that the police-recruiting process in Afghanistan will be examined after this.
-----The father-in-law who cut off a bride's nose and ears has been arrested. The victim was the young woman who appeared on the cover of Time Magazine.
-----British troops may begin retreating from Afghanistan in 2011.
-----Three more Pendleton Marines have been killed in Afghanistan. That brings the total to five this month.

Monday, December 06, 2010

Thursday Thirteen.....


2. Help the Audobon society with their annual bird count.

-----They Turned Thanksgiving Dinner Into Award-Winning Cupcakes
-----Unusual turkeys. I wonder how the turkeys react to whatever process is used to do this (and how it is done).

4. Cream Cheese Penguins  (recipe)

5. I sent for my 2011 SeedSavers Exchange catalog. I would really like to get the Moon and Stars melon this year.

6. Great fundraiser idea-sell garden seeds instead of candy bars.

7. I learned a new term..."double AIDS orphan." :-(

8. Help Attack! A way to make a pledge to a charity...and then donate the pledged amount for each tweet you make.

9. OneLegacy

"I just looked out an Alaskan window, via Skype. Guess what? Lots of snow. I waved at Putin across the water."

11. Illinois Coalition Against Beverage Taxes

12. Hair Make-up



Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others’ comments. It’s easy, and fun!
Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

View More Thursday Thirteen Participants
-----Beaded Snowflake Crochet Pattern. This can be done with or without the beads.

Saturday, December 04, 2010


Licensed photo...DO NOT COPY.
Title: Maya Calendar
Description: Artifact of Maya Calendar in a sunray

-----December 11. Myrtle Beach. Christmas Cruise-In. I am guessing there will be classic cars and various  motorcycles there (the event is at a Harley Davidson store). Free food. Proceeds will go to local needy families.
-----2011. Filming will start on a biopic with Sacha Baron Cohen as Freddie Mercury. I just do not see this as being able to be done well. I hope that Mr. Cohen does not do his own vocals....whether he would be good at them or not-it reminds me of La Bamba where many people now think of sounds other than the real Ritchie Valens.
-----2011. Six Flags Amusement Parks 50th Anniversary Celebration. I plan to go to at least part of it.
-----March 22,2011....the book "A Chicken in Every Yard" comes out. It can be pre-ordered now at
-----March 20-27, 2011. World Championships in Ski Orienteering. Tänndalen,Sweden.
-----MasterChef (USA) has been renewed for a second season. I do not know when that season will start.

2011 Calendars:


Friday, December 03, 2010

Charles Manson had a cell phone.

Bob Saget's Strange Days

I have never met anyone who has searched for Big
---BFRO...the BigFoot Field Researchers Organization that is featured in this episode. This group has been around since 1995 and is the only scientific research organization exploring the sasquatch mystery.

Watching these episodes, I was surprised that Bob Saget is a lot less family-oriented in his humor than I am used to.
-----Top 10 Diabetes Myths Blog post written by educators on the Mayo Clinic site. Some readers disagree with their statements.

Thursday, December 02, 2010

A flaming cherpumple must be an interesting site.

While it is a fascinating conversational topic and I do like Charles Phoenix's Astro Weenie Christmas trees, I could not in good-health-consciousness eat even one slice of a cherpumple. 

Apparently, a cherpumple takes a long time to make and is a messy endeavor.

Complete instructions on how to make your own cherpumple...including how to have it be a flaming cherpumple.
-----Oysters die as herpes-like virus spreads in Europe.
-----Should police never be allowed to use language that conveys their opinion of an offense?
-----Couple wins against Google in court...but they only win $1.
-----Lee Harvey Oswald's original coffin up for auction.

The Apprentice.....The Final Four

If this were just about presentation I would have been able to pick out a clear winner. Since price points were so crucial, I was a bit in suspense as to what customers would decide until the results were announced (though I did have an inclination to agree with Lisa).

---I tend to always agree with Lisa's opinion..she is very quick in her logic. Unfortunately, Lisa doesn't always/often assert this wisdom.
---Steuartt's maturity level did get really annoying at times...and possibly distracting from the task at hand. As project manager, I might have reached a point where I would openly not tolerate this behavior (maybe risking conflict in a short time where getting along was very important).
---Other than GREAT presentation skills, I don't see Brandy as having that much to offer right now. If Brandy brought more to the table as far as assertiveness, assuming leadership or expertise...she would be formidable competition.
---I am impressed by Clint's education, passion and determination. I think that Clint will absolutely be in the final two.
---I am not always a fan of Isaac Mizrahi clothing. I feel that sometimes the poufs Mizrahi sticks on his designs are out of place.

I am cheering for Clint and hope that he presents the same work ethic if he wins. If Lisa would have asserted herself more during the competition, I might be cheering for her.
-----Google's book store is coming the end of this year.

:-) 2009-06-11 daily 0.5 2009-06-11 daily 0.5