Sunday, November 28, 2010

Scary Food News? Or, Good Food News?

 In the weekend Spectator Nick Bontis says one of the top five careers by 2020 will be:
 • Pharmers: These bioscience professionals are responsible for developing new foods that are both safe and therapeutic. Think of them as glorified gardeners with a PhD in biology and a passion for orthomolecular nutrition. Imagine a world with healthy foods that actually protect you from diseases. You will get all your vitamins and minerals from your daily intake of milk because Bessie the cow was eating specially formulated hay.

First, I had to stop and very slowly say o r t h o m o l e c u l a r .  Then I thought about my plain, old, ordinary leeks that went in the freezer this morning.  And the plain, old, ordinary tomatoes, and zucchini.  The plain old raspberries.  Blueberries.  Sweet potatoes.  And all the other plain, old, ordinary stuff I eat every day.  Is that all becoming just so much chopped liver?  I really don't want growth hormones in my milk, (growth hormones in milk are banned in Canada.  Yaay.).  Corn and soybeans are genetically modified (not all, but trust me - PLENTY).  I wonder if evil, black hat wearing Monsanto Chemical is behind the 'pharmer' career path?  Here is one little wiki link about growth hormones & beef. 

If you don't want to click the link, here is one tiny excerpt. (rBSG is a growth hormone permitted in the USA.)

On September 30, 2010, a U.S. court of appeal found based on studies presented that there is a "compositional difference" between milk from rBSG-treated cows and untreated milk. The court found that studies have shown that rBST milk has: increased levels of the hormone IGF-1; lower nutritional quality when produced at certain points in the cow's lactation cycle; and more pus in the milk (increased somatic cell counts), which "make the milk turn sour more quickly and is another indicator of poor milk quality."

OK, I'm going down to the basement now where I can bury my head in the sand.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Achey body

Aaaahhh.  This was me yesterday.  I'm a little more modest than this cat, so the towel was covering my arse, not my head.  When I was in Houston I was dragging around way too much stuff and my shoulder / shoulder blade / collar bone has not been the same since.

I also dug about 70 leeks out of the garden the other day. Hmm - nope - more. I have about 60 in bags that I'll be dealing with this weekend, and I gave away about 20 on Tuesday night. All those teensy little specs I planted back in the spring did very well.  I thought I should get them out of the ground before it froze. Sylvester the mystery cat was hiding out there (likely mousing).  We scared each other. I came in the house COVERED in mud, so of course, that's when our neighbour popped over to talk to me. Making my usual fashion statement.

The leeks will get the tops and bottoms lopped off.  Then I slice them lengthwise and run them under water to get any mud out.  I chop them up, throw them on a cookie sheet and freeze 'em. Once they're frozen I will move them to freezer containers.  All winter we'll have leek & zucchini soup, or leek & potato soup.  Both are super simple, made with chicken or vegetable broth, a sauteed onion or two, and either a teaspoon of curry or a quarter teaspoon of hot pepper flakes.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Dog Quilt & Mom's Weekly Visit

I took this quilt photo at the Houston show for Sadie.  Too cute, eh?

All summer I've been hitting up McDonalds for yogurt parfaits before I go visit mom. We take a walk outside in the lovely sunshine and have the parfaits in the courtyard by the fountain. Now that winter is creeping up on us I have to change my tactics. It is still nice enough to take her out for a short (short!!) walk. So I dress her up in her winter gear and we drive over to Tim Hortons. Today we had tea & timbits. She had such a good time sitting there watching "all those old people". Truth be told, they were closer to my age than hers, so I had a wee chuckle to myself. She has NO IDEA what her age is.  (90, in case you have no idea either.)  I hope I'm that blissfully ignorant when the time comes.  She kinda grossed me out when she spit out a ... pea? which had apparently been stuck in her tooth since lunch.  We had to have a little talk about manners when we're in a restaurant. I shudder when I think about the gals who work at the home and have to sit through meals with a BUNCH of people who have forgotten their manners.  Ick.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Houston Shopping

I did some of my Houston shopping via my home computer before I got on the plane. It costs SO MUCH to ship stuff from the USA to Canada that I always take advantage of my suitcase.

I bought two bolts of Tonga Batik wide backing.  This is for sale - $20/m.
A new die for Jaws.  This is burning a hole in my brain.  I am kinda REALLY booked up with quilt jobs until Christmas and cannot play.  Aarrgh.
I had 30s prints on the brain from my last guild meeting.
New templates for use with Floyd.  The tiny circles won't be used too much but I'm sure they will come in really handy.  The rope design should look great on borders.  The rectangle is kinda boring but will replace my old one which looks like the dog was chewing on it.  I use this all the time.

This week I've turned into Mama Bear, getting filled up with berries for a long winter.  In a manner of speaking.  I've made a huge batch of coleslaw, cabbage soup with the leftovers, a large pan of cheese/spinach manicotti, and two pans of Shepherds Pie.  (ok, ok, DH made the Shepherds Pie.  He came home from work early, and he's a GOOD cook.  So I let him cook sometimes.)  Everything has been delicious.  I have enough leftovers for Thursday and Friday suppers.  Now if I can figure out a way to get a Saturday night date for dinner and a movie I will be all set.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

A wee bit of Houston Quilt Show stuff

Our first shopping stop was... Specs Wine & Spirits (my kind of store :-) ).  This is the HUGEST liquor store I've ever seen.  I've heard they make everything BIG in Texas.

Our second shopping stop was... DSW (Designer Shoe Warehouse - also my kind of store :-) ).  Apparently I'm not alone.

Here are two of the Japanese quilts which I saw early in my wanderings through the quilt show.
Maybe this is what I should do with some of the 30's prints I bought?  ha ha ha ha.

This is Linda Taylor,of Linda's Electric Quilters. My hero.  She laughed at me when she noticed I was taking her picture.  I promised to take a few so I'd have a good one, not one where her tongue was sticking out or she was looking cross eyed.  If you ever have a chance to register for a class with her, TAKE IT.

I came home with the plague. A couple of gals on the trip were sick, and you know how germs love to travel. Sigh.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Back from Houston

I managed to smuggle my overlimit goods through the airport.  Including the very large bottle of IVANABITCH Vodka which was stashed in my suitcase.  Hmm - is it smart to post that information here?  Maybe not so much.

This fella is my new favorite art quilter.  Here is a piece he had in the silent auction.
Nov. 14th - my mistake.  Jamie is a gal.  Many apologies!!!

It may be a while before I post more photos.  I have about 400 to go through.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Dresden Plates & Heading to Houston

Here is a great scrappy Dresden Plate quilt.

Line Dancing in the square blocks and a scroll in the narrow black border.
Loops inside the blades and continuous curve around the perimeter.
I love solid backings - so pretty!!

This is the last you will hear from me until next week.  I'm heading to Houston Texas for International Quilt Festival.  I think I'm already over my $$ allowance, just from stuff I've preordered.  Hopefully I will be able to squeak my way across the border and you won't have to bake me a cake with a file in it.