Tuesday, October 13, 2009

No Explanation Needed.

NAPCAN's latest campaign for a Child Friendly Australia.

NAPCAN is an organization in Australia focused on child abuse and neglect prevention and child well being.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Native Plants!

Result #13 from dictionary.com after searching the word "native":

originating naturally in a particular country or region, as animals or plants.
The two pictures above are my two best-friends in my native plant adventure. They are tremendous resources!
Bringing Nature Home by Douglas W. Tallamy is a wonderful book. It has been described as a "call to arms" and that is exactly what I felt reading it. I first heard Tallamy during an interview on NPR - Science Friday, I think. He was articulate, passionate and chock full of important information.
Most importantly for me: Tallamy imparts the message that YOU can help fix this problem. By planting native plants in your own back yard, you can help restore so much of the ecosystem that we have destroyed. Destruction from lawns, foreign ornamentals, non-native species can be reversed - a yard at a time.
Check this book out - but I strongly suggest the new and expanded version. The new version includes lists of natives to your area that the older ones doesn't.
The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, The University of Texas at Austin is an amazing website. You can research and look up almost all native plants, no matter where you live. I found 99% of what the Oregon natives while on the site.
Plants can be searched by common and scientific names and the results provide a lot of info. Pictures, too!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Just So YOU Know....

I am NOT going to hell. No matter your opinion.
You don't know my path, as I don't know yours.
I don't assume to know the state of your relationship with God, so don't assume mine.
Nothing angers me more.
Worry about yourself.
Possibly more on this later....

Friday, October 2, 2009


I'm gardening this weekend. Clearing out the ever present weeds, preparing the beds, pulling stuff out and putting stuff in.
What I really want to plant is a Tree Peony! I LOVE the Peony. I had really wanted some for my wedding, but it was the wrong time of year. So, I think I will plant one or two, thus getting to enjoy them when I want.
Native plants are my focus for the yard, but I just can't resist. And, apparently, Oregon is the PRIME climate for such beauties.
I'll keep you posted.

Monday, September 7, 2009

My J-to-S Quotient

I'm not sure how I have gathered so much junk. Ok, some of it is not junk...just stuff. Stuff is different than junk. And belongings are different than stuff. Belongings have emotions attached. "Stuff" are objects that are a necessity, but have no emotions attached.

Not believing this are you?

I have come to understand my Junk - to - Stress Quotient. The more junk I have, the more stress I have. Apparently this is the case with Rex too.

Yesterday was the first day of "purge, clean, de-stress". That's a working title. It could turn into "hey, my whole house is going on Craigs List - come and get it".

It's not that I live with stacks of things around me. We aren't "hoarders". But for some reason there is too much stuff in my small house. So, in order to get things in order - and thus reduce our stress levels - "purge, clean, de-stress" has commenced. I think I'm liking it. And, coming from someone who gets easily overwhelmed and thus can not figure out where to start - that fact that I did start is already a step in the right direction.

I'll keep you posted as to our progress.

Friday, August 14, 2009

I'm So Damn Frustrated!

Health care should be a right for all. No one should be allow to suffer slowly because they can not dole out the money needed to pay for treatment. I think our law makers and their federal health insurance have no idea what its like to NOT have health care. Let us revisit the Hippocratic Oath...perhaps our government leaders and decision makers should read it again.

The Hippocratic Oath: Modern Version

I swear to fulfill, to the best of my ability and judgment, this covenant:

I will respect the hard-won scientific gains of those physicians in whose steps I walk, and gladly share such knowledge as is mine with those who are to follow.

I will apply, for the benefit of the sick, all measures [that] are required, avoiding those twin traps of overtreatment and therapeutic nihilism.

I will remember that there is art to medicine as well as science, and that warmth, sympathy, and understanding may outweigh the surgeon's knife or the chemist's drug.

I will not be ashamed to say "I know not," nor will I fail to call in my colleagues when the skills of another are needed for a patient's recovery.

I will respect the privacy of my patients, for their problems are not disclosed to me that the world may know. Most especially must I tread with care in matters of life and death. If it is given me to save a life, all thanks. But it may also be within my power to take a life; this awesome responsibility must be faced with great humbleness and awareness of my own frailty. Above all, I must not play at God.

I will remember that I do not treat a fever chart, a cancerous growth, but a sick human being, whose illness may affect the person's family and economic stability. My responsibility includes these related problems, if I am to care adequately for the sick.

I will prevent disease whenever I can, for prevention is preferable to cure.

I will remember that I remain a member of society, with special obligations to all my fellow human beings, those sound of mind and body as well as the infirm.

If I do not violate this oath, may I enjoy life and art, respected while I live and remembered with affection thereafter. May I always act so as to preserve the finest traditions of my calling and may I long experience the joy of healing those who seek my help.

Written in 1964 by Louis Lasagna, Academic Dean of the School of Medicine at Tufts University, and used in many universities.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Hope! Hope? Hope.

Imagine: You can't stand it in your own mind. What happens in your head is out of your control. You get to the point where you just want it to end. Or, you are at the point where you don't want to die, but you really REALLY want it to end. So, what do you do? The anxiety, the depression, the paranoia, and for some - the voices. The stigma they feel for having these feelings and sensations.

Now imagine: The person who is experiencing this is your loved one, friend, sibling, spouse, family member who deals everyday with feeling out of control to some degree.

For any of you living with loved ones who suffer with mental illness, you know what I am talking about. It's a roller coaster ride. Severe climbs up the track with the inevitable fall down the other side...and the occasional lull or straight away that gives you/them just enough time to catch your breath and get your bearings before the next thrill.

I find it difficult to deal with. The extremes of seeing them at their worst and best is tiring, maddening, saddening and at times makes me angry. When I get angry and want to give up, I remember one thing: THEY are the one experiencing all of this. THEY are the one who can't seem to find a day of peace...of REAL peace. Can you IMAGINE? My answer is always: no, I can't. I can't imagine being on the roller coaster my ENTIRE life. And I think I would be as worn out as they are. I would want it to be OVER as much as they are wanting it to be over.

I find it maddening that some of the situation is in their control. Therapy and medication are available - but how do you convince a person suffering like this to go get help? When all they want is someone to say "shabam!" and have it all be better. How do you convince someone experiencing despair that "you have control - you can make some choices that will help you", because they can? And they aren't.

We see people everyday who are on the street, talking to themselves, and are obviously having a rough go. Who we don't see are the mothers and fathers, sister and brothers, teachers, receptionists, grocery clerks, policemen, etc who are also suffering but are able to hide it better.

Please support your local agencies who offer services to the mentally ill and to their loved ones. Donate to agencies - they need money to offer resources. Donate your time - they need people to help with classes, office work, or just making calls to get others to donate. Educate yourself about the resources available in your community so that you can at least pass it along to a friend in need.

It takes a special kind of person to work with the mentally ill. No matter the degree of the mental illness. Be kind to anyone you know who does this type of work. It's a gift from God, Allah, or the universe - however you want to think of it.

If you are living this life - the life of the spouse, friend, sibling, family member: Take care of yourself. Do what you can, but realize your limits. Talk to someone. Find a support group. Learn about the disease. Don't make it your life. Love, truly love, the one who is suffering - when you are at the point where you don't want to love them anymore or think that you can't possibly love them anymore.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

I'm a Mid 70's Kind of Gal...

And, I don't mean the decade. I'm hot. It's hot. I got told to stuff it on FaceBook from my friends in Arizona because I was complaining about the heat. So, I have turned to MY domain - my blog - to complain.
I'm hot. It's hot. Freakishly baking hot. I need a cool breeze.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Haiku II

Alas, I am home.

Goodbye my beach, just for now.

NoPo, here we go!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Am I Blue.... Am I Blue....yet?

It's official. I am addicted to blueberries. I love them. Yes - I would marry them if I could.
Blueberry season has arrived...well at least in Selah, Washington. That's where my blueberries have been coming from...the blueberries I have been eating all week that is (yes, I do realize its only Wednesday). Specifically, I am referring to the two 2lb containers I have eaten this week. I just packed another 2lb container in my beach stuff. NO - I'm not ashamed. I'm like a camel - I need to fill my hump.
There is nothing more lovely than a box full of those little, round, chalky blue, spheres of perfection. Sweet, small, bursting with blueberry flavor.....
Do I need an intervention? Maybe. Someone assured me I would be sick if I ate all those blueberries. Well...let me tell you that the aforementioned sickness has not occured and will not! You don't know the amount of blueberries I can eat. My tolerance is high...HIGH!
I am starting to get flashes of Violet from Willy Wonka. "Violet, your turning violet, Violet!" I may turn blue.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

A Pre-Trip Haiku

To the beach I go
Sand, wind, seagull, salt spray, happy
Will I make it back?

Friday, June 26, 2009

Grease...and Greasier?

Date: June 26, 2009
Time: 10:14pm

On TV: Grease

On TV after that: Grease 2

Is it sad that I'm sitting at home, with the dog, watching Grease and possibly Grease 2 if I stay up that late? Some might say yes. I say - lay off me bitch, cuz I LOVE these two movies! So - HA!

Who doesn't like Grease? John, Olivia and Stockard? HELLO!

I believe that the protocol for the Grease Fan is to hate Grease 2, but I just can't help it. A young Michelle Pfeiffer - she is still one of my favorites. And who doesn't just love Maxwell Caulfield? Periodically he will show up in a movie and I think - oh, Michael Carrington, the "Cool Rider" LOL!

Anyway - I'm singing along to both. All parts! Happy Friday!!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Innocence by Kathleen Tessaro

I just finished this book. When I bought it, I thought it may be a bit of fluff....it didn't seem too deep, and the tag line was "Love. The greatest temptation of all." BUT - I have learned: Don't judge a book by it's cover.

Within 3 days time, I have finished this book. This is not really off the mark for me, I tend to read fast. I guess what I liked was all the places to book went in that amount of time and in 371 pages. The book follows three American girls who live in London and are in acting school. All is well for them until "love" enters the picture for one of the girls.

Now, this may sound like a sappy, stupid love story, but the description in the jacket doesn't give justice to the story. It's not just love, but the kind of love. It's not just girls' friendship, but the kinds of friendship. It's about paths chosen, lives lived, and what happens when your dead friend comes back to call you on it - and has a secret of her own.

Through series of time jumps - past, present, past, present again - the author takes Evie, Robbie and Imogene (mostly Evie & Robbie), who they think they are, and are they really just THAT? Or are they living with the ramifications of dreams deferred...or dreams they really didn't want in the first place?

While an easy read and not a "classic", I found that I was presently surprised by Innocence. It wasn't fluff. I loved the characters. And, as a gal who grew up in the 80's - I LOVE the references to the pop culture of the time. References to plays, sonnets, poems, and concertos appear throughout...and I'm sure if I knew the references well, I would draw even more meaning from the pages.

Side note: Late last night, or really early this morning, as I was finishing up, it hit me! The date was June 21, 2009. Huh, interesting. In the book, Part One is: February 1986. Part Two is: June 21, 1991. Part Three is: June 21, 1996. June 21st is a major date in the book. How is it I managed to pick a random book, in the clearance shelf, and read it just in time to coincide with the main date of the book? Woooo, trippy....

Thursday, June 18, 2009

My Protective Force Field

I need a protective force field.

I take on others stuff - troubles, angst, problems, emotions, etc. I actually feel what they feel...and, who knows where I learned this (well, I know but let's not go into it), I like to try and fix it. And, when it doesn't get fixed, it causes me more angst etc. Sometimes a little more than it is causes the actual person.

Shoot, I feel angst when just pondering the state of the planet. I haven't seen "An Inconvenient Truth" because I just can't handle it. I stop reading when I see the headline "Giant Ice Shelf Cracks Off Antarctica". I was given the book and I haven't even cracked it open.

So just imagine when the problem is tied to a loved family member or friend...especially those with the chronic type of issues. I can't just close the book or change the channel with them.

So, I am trying to LET IT GO! My sister has a new phrase these days:

"Let go or be dragged"

I like that...like it a lot.

I have to constantly remind myself that letting go of other people problems is not being a bad friend, sister, wife, daughter. I can care, empathise, show concern, listen to their venting, and I don't have to solve it. They are adults and have their own path. I sometimes feel that if I put all the energy I expend on worrying about other people back on myself - I might actually accomplish some goals I have set for myself.

Even as I type, I feel guilty. Wondering what some of my friends will think when they read this. Will they judge me?

When will THAT feeling go away? Hey, I'm a work in progress. Rome wasn't built in a day, right? First of all, guilt is for when you do something WRONG. Second, if my friends are mad nbecause I am trying to give up my co-dependent ways and take care of myself...then maybe they aren't my friends after all. Hmm....

As I pondered all this, I found these images that illustrate what I'm feeling. Maybe I can use them as visualizations when I need that extra support.
And, they are kinda funny. :-)

Monday, June 15, 2009

Too Salty - Makes Me Crabby.

So, I spent an hour on the Internet tonight looking for crab cake recipe that seemed doable and didn't require a trip to the store. AND - would work with canned crab meat..which might have been my downfall.

I know - CANNED crab meat! WHAT COULD I BE THINKING?! Well, I will tell you - it's cheaper and I thought I would give it a try. So - lets just let that go and I will tell you what happened.

I spent the time making the cakes, chilling them for an hour, cooking them until a beautiful golden brown. I made a salad and created a dressing of honey mustard, paprika, garlic and grape seed oil and a glass of strawberry lemonade ( I don't like lemonade, but that's a whole other blog about my dislike of water.) I sit down at the table, take a bite and it hits me - SUPER SONIC SALTY SUCKYNESS! What happened? What little troll came along and dumped a bucket of NaCl in my crab cakes? DAMN DAMN DAMN!

So, I just have to vent. Because I don't like salt. I don't crave salty things, I pick the salt off my pretzels, and a visit to the Great Salt Lake is not on my "bucket list" (ironically, I love the ocean...but whatever). I once had an encounter with the salty black licorice they sell at IKEA that ended with my head in the sink and my sister laughing so hard I though she was going to pee. Not funny.
Oh - the one time when salt is good? When the saltine its on is covered in chocolate icing.

Maybe I need to read "Salt: A World History" by Mark Kurlansky. Undoubtedly it will give me a genuine appreciation for my nemesis. And, I do have to admit, I am intrigued by the array of salts offered at Uwajimaya. Grey salt. Red salt. Pink salt. Brown salt. You get the picture

Sunday, June 14, 2009

GA: Even Better When You Do a Handstand!

Head With Fruit Basket
The Gardner
The Cook


GA: Water, Fire, Flora, Air & a Grotesque Head

Water Fire Flora Air Grotesque Head
Out of these three the water is my favorite I think. I look at it and think "slimy and cold". It sends me in all directions..."What if my face was like that? What would that feel like? Would I drip salt water all over the place? Are the pieces alive?! But, hey, life is good - I have a very nice Jackie O-esque pearl necklace!"

Art should the the impetus for thought.....right? :-)
I also admire that GA still shows emotion in the faces and especially the eyes...

Guiseppe Arcimboldo: Self Portrait

Giuseppe Arcimboldo (1526-1593)Self-portrait in paper (Man of Letters)Pen and ink on paper - 44,2 x 31,8 cmGenoa, Musei di Strada Nuova,Palazzo Rosso, Gabinetto Disegni e Stampe

Behold the artist responsible for making faces out of grains, fruit, vegetables, fish, birds and meat!

Notice he didn't exclude himself in the process - the first self portrait is himself made from paper.
His line drawings are fantastic and I particularly like second self portrait. The eyes are deep and hold emotion, the crooked nose....
Hi G!

One of My Favorites: Guiseppe Arcimboldo

The Four Seasons
Guiseppe Arcimboldo, 1527 -1593, Mannerist artist.
I found the work of this artist while in my college art history class. I think many people have seen these works, but they never cease to amaze me. Especially when considering the years he was alive - this was not the typical art being produced.
Arcimboldo was born in Milan Italy to a father who was a stained glass artist for the church. At 22 Guiseppe took over his fathers position and produced stained glass for two cathedrals in Milan.
After this he became a court artist for Kings and Emperors in Vienna and Prague. While working under royalty, he not only painted his Mannerist work, or his "composite heads", but he was a stage and costume designer for the royal pageants and parades. He left a 150 page red leather bound sketch book to the Emperor..I will have to find some of his line drawings to post.
Guiseppe was a very famous artist during his day, but after his death was quickly forgotten. Not many of his works remain - most rotted away in a moldy closet for 300 years before being discovered.
The series of seasons above are some of his most well known paintings. I think they are fun and crazy and absolutely beautiful! Some royalty actually posed for him.

Friday, June 12, 2009

World Have Your Say.....My Groupie Moment

Broadcasting from Pioneer Courthouse Square, Portland Oregon

The Portland audience taking it in and participating.

Ros moderating the show.

The show happening...live!

Ros & Me!

I dig OPB, NPR, PRI and all those other public radio organizations that bring us good programming, news and events from around the world. I find they offer different perspectives than we see here in the states and are generally are very interesting.
One show that I particularly LOVE Is World Have Your Say. Now, if your not familiar with WHYS, let me describe it to you. WHYS is a radio call in show that is broadcast around the world. The listeners email in all sorts of topic ideas and are the ones who pick the topic for the day. Whatever idea/current event/question submitted the most, or seems to be on everyones mind, wins out. After that, Ros Atkins and a host of other moderators engage callers, emailer, twitterers, bloggers, and audience participants in a discussion of the topic and encourage them to talk to each other. Believe it or not - a bulk of their commenters on the show are from Oregon! Interestingly, their listenership is skyrocketing in the US. Sweet.....! WHYS also has a blog that people post to about the topic and the comments don't stop at the end of the show. Check it out!

WHYS was in Portland this week for a news radio conference, YIPPY!! I didn't know they were coming (how did I miss that) until I heard them from Pioneer Square....I was actually working all the way across town and was right next to my next job. So what do I do? I drive all the way to downtown to catch the last 1/2 hour and then drive all the way back across town for my next job. Hey, sometimes ya gotta do what ya gotta do. That was on Tuesday. The bonus for that day was that after the hour, they announced they would do another hour that was only being broadcast in Africa..so I stayed for that! (no, I wasn't late to my next gig.) Check out Africa Have Your Say.

Seeing the show in real time was fascinating. It's like perfectly timed chaos. Ros pointing at who gets to speak next and fielding the callers and invited guests, assistants passing out emails/tweets/blogs to read on air. Other audience members announcing the email address/phone number for the show. Microphone people running around so comments can be heard. WOW!

On Tuesday I learned the would broadcast from a pancake house in The Dalles on Wednesday (I have hear them broadcast from a persons bedroom before), a hotel on Thursday, and back at Pioneer Square on Friday. I was so there on Friday!

Fridays crowd was bigger than Tuesday, and while on Tuesday people seemed to come and go more. Friday - the crowd stayed. In all about 100 people were standing and sitting around as we talked about "Do You Believe in Fate?" with each other and callers from the Philippines, England, Africa, etc. One bummer was that I didn't get a pair of headphones..I kept waiting for someone to leave so I could take theirs, but it didn't happen. They finally turned on a speaker so those without headphones could hear.

In the end, I got to meet Ros and tell him how much I love the show. We talked a bit about who listens to the show and how its amazing that even though in the states we have tons of media we can access, the listenership from the US in through the roof. According to him we are seriously bucking the trend! Many of the other listeners come from countries that have limited media coverage -Nigeria for example. The number of South African listeners has decreased since the fall of Apartheid, due to expanded media services. India is falling a bit because media is improving also. Those are just the general trends. WHYS still has a huge following around the globe. Ros was a pleasure to talk to and even let me take a photo with him. (Thanks JG for taking the pic!) Great guy! The whole WHYS team was great actually.

If you get a chance - listen to them....you might like it!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

What To Do....What To Do?

I want to change the look of my blog. I'm not sure I like the templates. Hmmm.......

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Roller Skating

Picture to the left by Holly Leitner
I announced to Rex the other day, " I am going to find a pair of roller skates! Then I can skate around the neighborhood!"
His response: "Your going to fall and hurt your shoulder." This comes from his ongoing concern over my bum shoulder, and the fact that all the stuff I want to try could really damage said shoulder -- IF, I fall.
So, what do I say: "I won't fall."
I am bound and determined to find myself some skates! In my head, they have sparkly wheels - but, hey, I'll take what I can get. An authentic pair of Skate World rental skates would be FANTASTIC! But, I doubt those will come along. In the mean time, my sister found a white pair with blue wheels at an estate sale down the street. A size 8. Half a size to big for me and half a size to small for her. We'll see who they fit the best.....
I have fun memories of roller skating as a kid. For those of you who grew up around here, you might remember Beaverton Skate...currently the New Seasons next to what we used to call Beaverton Mall. Now its Cedar Hills Crossing..I think. Aging myself here....although I CAN say I wasn't born when the mall was an airport. So there! I actually remember learning to skate there...and have better memories of learning to roller skate that I do of learning to ride my bike.
Or how about Skate World in Hillsboro!! It's still there and I really wonder how much action they see. There was nothing like the rust and blue motif they had going on. I was there SOOO MUCH. I still wish I had really learned to skate backwards. And, gotten skilled enough to do the "speed skate". Ok, maybe not. I remember the ambulance being summoned more that once during "speed skate".
So, anyway. I'll try not to bust anything. Pads may be helpful, eh?

Friday, May 1, 2009

Portland Sunday Parkways is Coming Again!

Picture from the Sunday Parkways website.

I am SO excited! I came home today to a door flyer that confirmed it. I was hoping they would do it and they ARE! They being the City of Portland, Kaiser Permanente, METRO, OR Bike, Drive Less. Save More., and the Portland Bureau of Transportation.

PORTLAND SUNDAY PARKWAYS IS COMING BACK! (click there and go to the website) This is the day when miles of Portland roadways are closed to motorized traffic and are packed with humans on bikes! This event is happening all around the world and finally came to PDX last summer.

Rex and I biked the event last year and it was a blast. Not only were the streets filled with bikes, the parks on the route were teaming with booths, food, music, people, and pets. So much was going on! Everyone had a huge smile on their face and life was good. As we biked our way around we came upon friend after friend and neighbor after neighbor - all pleased with how the event was planned and turning out. The Portland Police did a fabulous job at keeping the roads and crossings safe! - Good job guys!

SO - to make life even BETTER this year - IT'S HAPPENING THREE TIMES IN PORTLAND this summer, in THREE areas of town: North Portland on June 24th, 9am-4pm; Northeast Portland on July 19th, 9am-4pm; and Southeast Portland on August16th, 9am-4pm. Click on your neighborhood to see the route.

Put it on your calender. Pump up the tires, grease the chain, dust off the bell and get ready for the road! YIPPY!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Craving Guacamole Salad

Images from foodnetwork.com

I love to cook and I love the cooking channel. I have to admit - this is still a main reason we haven't cancelled our cable. We discuss it. We hash it out. We plan it. And every time I say, "But I won't get to watch the cooking channel."
When I say this, what I really mean is: "I won't be able to watch Ina Garten on The Barefoot Contessa." She may not be flashy and a hipster, but her recipes are fantastic and they always turn out well. ALWAYS! Besides all of that, she has a really nice speaking voice, it's easy to listen to, and she doesn't treat the audience like they are morons who have never heard of water. Oh - and I LOVE her house. :-) Read her bio here, if you want to learn how she went from working in the White House on nuclear energy policy to food.
I recently caught an episode (new or re-run? I 'm not sure) and she made Guacamole Salad. YUM! I then made it for my Moms birthday and it was a hit. The recipe makes 6 servings, but we were feeding a lot of people, so I doubled the recipe and it still turned out awesome. Here it is (the undoubled recipe):
1 pint grape tomatoes - halved
1 yellow bell pepper, seeded & 1/2 inch diced
1 (15 oz) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup red onion - small diced
2 tbsp jalapeno - seeded & minced (2 peppers)
1/2 tsp lime zest - freshly grated ( I used more - but I like lime)
1/2 cup lime juice - freshly squeezed ( 2 limes)
1/4 cup good olive oil
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp black pepper - freshly ground
1/2 tsp garlic - minced
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper - ground
2 ripe Hass Avocados - seeded, peeled, & 1/2 inch diced. ( I suggest prepping these just when your ready to add them, so they don't turn brown.)
Place tomatoes, yellow pepper, black beans, red onion, jalapeno pepper & lime zest in a large bowl.
Whisk together the lime juice, olive oil, salt, black pepper, garlic & cayenne pepper. P
Pour over the vegetables and toss well.
Just before your ready to serve the salad, fold the avocados into the salad, check the seasoning and serve at room temperature.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

46 Days Until Interstate Farmer's Market Opens

I am trying to wait patiently for the Interstate Farmer's Market to open. The weather this weekend isn't helping. The sun has finally come out, there are flowers blooming in my yard and it feel like time for the market to open. I NEED berries. I can already taste the tomatillo salsa from Hot Mama Salsa...YUM. I can't wait to see my friends from Unger Farms and taste the blueberries. Oh, ya, don't forget the guy who makes the crazy yummy brownies - from traditional chocolate to crazy savory and sweet flavors. Ok, I could go on for a while...
The IFM is just a short MAX (Yellow Line) ride from my house...or a bike ride depending on how much you plan to haul back home. You will find it right across the street from the Kaiser complex, in Overlook Park.
I LOVE the farmer's market. It smells good. It looks good. It tastes good. It helps the little guy.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

My Dental Floss is Irish

Newbridge, County Kildare, Ireland - Home of my dental floss.

The other day I was flossing my teeth. A bit personal, yes, but I have a point. As I placed the floss back in my medicine cabinet, the bottom of the container caught my eye: Made in Ireland. Really? Who knew? I was intrigued to say the least.

Now, most people might not care, but I do. I often wonder where things are made and more importantly WHO makes all of these items we use. WHO in Ireland is making my dental floss? Who makes the umbrellas that go in fruity drinks? Who makes the staples in the stapler? Or paperclips? Or the soap we use? EVERYTHING we use is made by someone. And, I hope this someone gets treated with respect and makes a living wage....that's a whole other post.

There are people who get up in the morning, shower, dress, eat, kiss their loved ones and head out to the dental floss factory. They call out a "see you tonight" and drive off to make rubber bands all day. The carpool picks them up and heads to the factory to assemble shoe laces until the 5 o'clock whistle. These things fascinate me. Every time I use a simple product I think: SOMEONE has made this. SOMEONE makes their living from making this.

So, I did a little research and came upon an entry titled: Dental Floss: Trends and Prospects in International Trade Is Essential Reading for Relevant Strategic Planners, Senior Company Officials and Importers/Exporters. The report examines international trade and worldwide market trends for dental floss. Dental Floss is apparently serious business.

But WHO is making the floss? Oral-B Laboratories Ireland, Ltd. THAT'S who. Located in Newbridge, County Kildare to be specific. A town 40 km from Dublin that dates back to the 12th century. They have a strong industrial background in making rope and carpet. So there you go. THAT'S a bit about who is making my dental floss.