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Use of Homeopathy Kills Child

This is so true, and parents should be aware that reliance on homeopathic and naturopathic products can be dangerous. I think this issue is important enough to reblog, so here it is.

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Summer Update!

My limited spare time has been taken up by practicing piano, as I had a piano lesson in July! My first in over 25 years. I was so nervous my hands were shaking and I made way more mistakes than I usually do. But it was extremely beneficial so I’m glad I did it. Many hours on Beethoven’s Sonata 17, the one Glenn Gould plays like his hair’s on fire and he can’t douse it until he’s through. Obviously I don’t play it that fast, but I’m working on memorization now and I think that will help with a lot of issues. I’ve now been working on this for 6 months! On and off, obviously, but still. My husband’s starting to feel he could probably play it himself by now, he’s heard it so much.

So that’s one reason I’m a bit behind on the blogging. We spent three weeks on Vancouver Island, which we call The Island, and it was gorgeous:IMG_8133

And we made cinnamon buns:

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But we had SO MANY guests. Too many. And when you have guests, you wind up making major breakfast, major lunch, and then a major dinner. For 15! So I had very little down time and that’s exhausting. It’s hard though; I love everyone who came, I’m happy to have seen them, but it was too much. Not sure how we’ll organize things next year but something has to give. I don’t think it’s cool to suffer through stuff that you can totally control and then complain about it later, but that’s essentially what I’ve just done. Sorry! Learn from my mistakes.

Next year’s resolutions:

  • Limit stays to 3 nights MAX.
  • Try to have only one family at a time.
  • Have Leftover Night and if people don’t like it then maybe they won’t come next year. Yes, we’re restaurateurs and we eat leftovers.
  • Let people fend for themselves for breakfast! Everyone gets up at a different time. Brunch once a week only.
  • Ask people to take responsibility for one meal. It’s nice that people bring food, but sometimes it’s extremely difficult to make a coherent meal plan with a lot of rapidly spoiling, diverse ingredients.

Pet peeves:

People who wander through and say vaguely, “Anything I can do?” before wandering out again. It’s annoying to have to be the general all the time. I have to think of tasks for people to do. That’s work in itself.

When people do something helpful but make more work for me in the end. Someone did dishes but didn’t rinse anything first, just got the sponge all clagged up with black grease so I had to throw it away. And you can’t complain! That’s the thing. Because people are Helping. But sometimes no help is better than some help. Like when people put my expensive Japanese knives in the dishwasher! OH YES THEY DID. And I can’t be mad when people are trying to be helpful. But I’m mad anyway, I just feel really guilty about it. You should see me smile with gritted teeth. But. At the end of the day, it’s all good, and I’m grateful to have wonderful friends and family who want to spend time with us! You take the good, you take the bad. I took the good, and now I’m kvetching here.

Now I’ve just come back from being a house guest at someone else’s beach cottage. Ahhh. That was fun! We stayed 3 nights – because that’s enough – and I taught my hosts how to make cinnamon buns.

Next post: book reviews!

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Dreams and Shadows by C. Richard Cargill

I’m exploring more fantasy fiction lately. (I’ve just downloaded a Terry Goodkind novel. If it’s good then apparently I’ve got loads to get through. I’ll let you know.) I did a post on Game of Thrones and fantasy literature and it got me thinking that I should do more exploration of this genre. But I’ve taken a sideline into the kind of fiction that has a lot to do with magic and the collision of worlds as opposed to outright fantasy. Lev Grossman’s The Magician and Erin Morgenstern’s The Night Circus are good examples of this trend.

Ten pages into Dreams and Shadows I was looking in the front flap to see what else Cargill has written because I was absolutely captivated and was hoping to find a long list of books. Alas, Dreams and Shadows is his first. I hope he turns out to be one of those prolific writers who produces a book a year at least. I’m sure his publishers are thinking the same. What kind of contract are we talking about? I’m hoping a 10-book contract! AT LEAST. Because Dreams and Shadows is wonderful and I just ripped through it.

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This is a great blog post – and this happens to me all the time! It’s so awkward when I forget people’s names. I’m ok with faces, but that’s because I’m so visual. And at this point in my life there are so many ways in which I could have met someone; it’s not always right there in front of me, memory-wise. So here are the rules!

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Hottest Day of the Year

So far, anyway. So I thought I’d turn on my oven to make Blueberry Coffee Cake – I found the recipe on the web and I’m going to have to apologize to wherever it came from because I forgot to make a note of it. But it needs lemon anyway and I made a few more modifications = new recipe?

Blueberry Coffee Cake (low fat)

oven: 375, 9 x 9 pan sprayed with nonstick and lined with parchment paper

You mix this up as you mix up muffins:

Dry Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 c. flour (I used Nutriflour)
  • 2 t. baking powder
  • 1/2 t. baking soda
  • 1/2 t. salt

Wet Ingredients:

  • 1 c. plain nonfat yogurt
  • 3 T. vegetable oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 t. vanilla
  • juice and grated rind of 1 small lemon or 1/2 large lemon

Streusel:

  • 1/4 c. flour
  • 1/4 c. brown sugar
  • 1/4 c. quick oats
  • 2 t. melted butter

1 1/2 c. blueberries

Make the streusel, mixing all ingredients together until crumbly.

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry, mix until barely combined, add blueberries and mix until just combined. Pour into pan and sprinkle with streusel. Bake 35 minutes (test). Let cool before cutting as it’s a very soft cake.

Blueberry Coffee Cake

We are going to the beach today to surprise a friend for her birthday – her husband organized it and coincidentally it’s on the hottest day of the year. Each family is going to bring our own food but the husband is providing some treats also. What food is he providing for the hottest day of the year? Sushi and ice cream cake!!! He’s going to keep the sushi in our restaurant fridge, instead of in his car, so good thing there was space. But the ice cream cake is going to be very exciting in 30+ degree temperature. So like a guy, I love it. Also like a guy: Justin made it home alive from the White Cruise….but he lost his shoes. Not on the boat, at a house party afterwards. I could almost understand the boat, well, not really, but  – at someone’s house? How do you do that?

So I’ve spent my day preparing picnic food: o-nigiri rice balls, teriyaki chicken, salad, cucumber sticks, cherries, and blueberry coffee cake. I’ve just realized that I haven’t figured out drinks at all. I suppose that’s just like a girl. O well. At least I know where all my shoes are.

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Maybe the Canadian athletes’ outfits will be better in the Closing Ceremonies…

Or maybe not. Sigh. More pics here. Jean jackets. With patches on. My hand actually went up to cover my mouth when I saw these. This pic is my favourite because of the tie-worn-as-bandanna. Awesome.

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