Monday, June 21, 2010

Clean up the streets.

While driving home from work today Tyler and I spotted two KSTP channel 5 vans. The television one had its big antenna thing all the way up. As we drove by I looked in all directions trying to figure out what they had been or would be covering. KSTP never seems to be too kind to North Minneapolis. So.. the two trucks were parked on the east side of Penn Ave just before Golden Valley Road. Almost right in front of Wally's - a northside INconvenience store. This intersection is known for loitering, lots of drug activity, and numerous 911/311 calls. Seeing the KSTP vans there could mean anything! When we got home I immediately went to where I got distracted by a home video of one of the tornadoes from Thursday. I also turned on channel 5 on the television though I don't really enjoy that station. Eventually the story aired, which you can read/view here. Basically, on Friday night a woman was in her car at the intersection of Penn and GVR and she was shot in the chin by a stray bullet. It looks to have grazed her chin so she's fared very well but something like that, obviously, shouldn't be happening. She was quoted as saying we need to clean up the streets - boy is she right. We drive by the intersection AT LEAST two times a day, it's only a few blocks from our house. That is definitely a crime too close for comfort. I'm so glad she's alright.


Laura N. told me about this at work today. Guess I'm a little late as its from March 2009 but I still think its neat!


(I prefer to refer to sheep as "eep")
I'm laying on the couch. We put the two sections together for Kyle to sleep on while Tyler's family was here for the weekend. We decided to try keeping it this way after we made a few adjustments to the angle and the placement of the rug. (The legs of the couch were on the rug and that made me very afraid for the rug - it's the most expensive rug I've ever had.. though that doesn't mean too much..) Anywho - Honey is on the rug and playing with a little blue squeaky toy that I got her at the pet store the other day. She likes to run around with it outside - run in circles while squeaking it. She also likes to squeak it in other places including the rug pretty close to my right ear. It's incredibly high pitched and VERY loud. But... she's having fun. :)

So as I just said, Tyler's family was here this weekend. They were coming to help us with the fence but last minute we decided to scratch that idea and have a fun weekend. Tyler, Abby, and Kyle went to Valley Fair after they got into town on Friday night. I stayed home with Tyler's parents, Hal & Judy. We looked at cabins to possibly rent for a weekend in August and watched something silly like Dateline about some murder mysteries.

While they were here we got the baseboards painted in the dinning room, some light switches changes, and a new light installed by the basement stairs. We also ate a lot of yummy food and went to one of my favorite stores - Arc's Value Village. I bought a lot of old jars with lids to keep things like flour and sugar in as my current jars are too small. I bought some shirts, a neat wooden carving for the dinning room, a game called Huggermugger, and a few other things. Judy bought Othello. When we got home quite a few games of Othello were played and a very interesting game of Huggermugger. Huggermugger is a tough game! It's basically about spelling. Very educational. :) On Sunday we opted to stay home from church to do some painting and went to Buca Di Beppo for a big lunch before they headed back to Iowa (as usual!). At lunch we gave Hal his father's day gift and shared a special surprise. We also ate one of these:

They'll be back in three weeks to help with the fence. Yay!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010


We've painted the dinning room walls! And the ceiling! And hung my wonderful chandelier that I found for $20. :) We need to do a second coat on the walls tonight and will hopefully get to the trim soon. The dinning room very well may be my favorite room. It is the prefect shade of wonderful green - olivine! I kind of wish we could paint every room a wonderful shade of green. But I should probably stop at two.

We had a leak in our roof on Friday when it was raining heavily. A leak is always unfortunate but we just spent a decent amount of money on a new roof last fall! I put in a call to the company, Sela, who did the job and a flat roofer contacted Tyler. He stopped by the house and blamed it on the open window on our storm door. I couldn't disagree with him more. The man came out this morning to do a water test and it was quite the ordeal. There was some miscommunication and he now needs to come back. Honestly I didn't like this guy one bit. I don't usually have such adverse reactions to people, especially right of the bat. I couldn't help myself! Hopefully we'll get it sorted out and can safely fix up some spot that got wet in the kitchen soon. While hunting for the leak I ended up pulling out a ton of wet drywall from the kitchen and over the back door this weekend. I guess it's better to have the space open so everything can dry. That drywall seemed pretty messed up and I wouldn't be surprised it it was modly. eww.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Tuesday, June 8, 2010


Seriously - wow.

magazine face

Hide and Seek


Tyler is sanding in the dinning room. I've just return from a grocery trip and am looking a things like this:

water can case

Simply amazing! See more here.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Strawberry Drama.

Read this disturbing article. Research studies under masters in environmental science programs should tackle the development of stricter safety guidelines in crop production. The motives of so many companies to simply turn a profit rather than consider the safety of their employees, the environment, AND their customers boggles my mind. Read this:

Scientists Claim Warnings About Strawberry Fumigant Ignored
By Elise Craig on June 7, 2010

In California, pesticide regulators plan to approve a fumigant for coastal strawberry fields that experts say could expose bystanders and field workers to health problems, California Watch reports.

Scientists from the Department of Pesticide Regulation and peer-review scientists were shocked when exposure levels for the agricultural chemical methyl iodide were set 120 times higher than they recommended.

All eight of the peer-review scientists told California Watch that their recommendations must have been ignored. “I’ve never seen anything like this,” said panel member Ron Melnick. “Why have someone review a document when you’re just going to ignore it?”

Strawberry growers are looking to methyl iodide to replace methyl bromide, a fumigant that is being phased out because of damage to the ozone layer.

Studies show that the new chemical can cause miscarriages and thyroid cancer in rabbits and rats, and some scientists point to case studies that link the chemical to irreversible brain damage.

Because of health concerns — particularly what the chemical could do to the developing brains of infants and children — the review panel added the “uncertainty factor” when they set a recommended limit, lowering it by a factor of 10.

A Department of Pesticide Regulation spokesperson told California Watch that their risk managers had deemed the “uncertainty factor” unnecessary.” She also said that the scientists’ recommendations were only one part of DPR’s decision, and that the EPA had approved the chemical at levels even higher than DPR in 2007.

But EPA pesticide scientist Jeff Dawson said that the agency may re-evaluate the fumigant, and that the agency is interested in “the conclusions of the panel.”

The California State Senate will hold a hearing on methyl iodide on June 17.

Spinach Pesto with Scallops

I've made this recipe a few times in the past but rarely use fresh spinach let alone spinach from my backyard!

I sauteed some scallops in oil, garlic, and basil (from the garden). I added some spinach leaves (from the garden) about 1/2 through the cooking process and kept adding some every 30 seconds or so. I smushed up quite a lot of spinach leaves and basil (both from the garden) as well as some garlic in my chopper thing. Tyler cooked the pasta. I added the smushed stuff to the pan, cooked it all together briefly, and then mixed it into the pasta. And... yum! :)


Natural Pesticide - yay!

I just found this on Natural Pesticide! Just what I need as our spinach, swiss chard, and lettuce seem to be yummy to more than just us. Here's the recipe and a link to where it came from.

Here is my recipe: Mix 1 gallon of water with 2 tablespoons of neem, and ½ teaspoon each rosemary and lavender essential oils (I used organic version of all the oils). You can also add a couple of tablespoons of phosphate-free liquid dishwashing soap. Mix thoroughly and pour into a spray bottle. Spray over every part of your plants, mixing frequently to keep the oils and water from separating.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

last night's dinner

mmmmmm! :) Steak & chicken kabobs. Tyler made some cous cous, too.


Wednesday, June 2, 2010


So far this week Tyler and I have enjoyed wonderful and incredibly fresh salads with our lunches. In the morning I've been taking a few minutes to go outside and cut leaves, wash them, and pack them for lunch! Here is a photo of the leaves (organic mixed salad and organic spinach) right after I washed them yesterday:

On Tuesday afternoon I showed quite a few coworkers. I'm incredibly proud.

Pesticides, ugh.

I recently read a study linking the presence of pesticides on fruits and vegetables with ADHD. The best time to avoid certain fruits and vegetables and to eat organic produce is during pregnancy due to the significant development taking place every second. I would assume this would still hold true for a few years into a child's life and they're obviously continuing to develop... Not that once you hit a certain again I think it's okay to start consuming pesticides. It can be hard to afford organic or be too picky about food so at least there is a pinpointed time when it is best to put forth the effort. Today I found a list of the "best" and "worst" fruits and vegetables in terms of pesticide content.

Things like this frustrate me to no end. Why must our country be so darn focused on profit making rather than the general well being of the people? Pesticides exist to increase profits (less bugs, more crops) but we very well may be creating a generation of kids with attention problems and potentially other disabilities. Who knows how these things affect us but the people at the top are constantly focused on making things more profitable. I think that's disgusting.