Friday, November 30, 2007

Twin Peaks at Sunset

Before I went to visit Sam she ordered a new digital camera for me (early Christmas pressie from Embee) and had it charged all ready for my arrival. The problem is I am still learning all the features; many of the early photos I took are very poor quality. Sam decided to try out the video function the evening we went to see the view of San Francisco at sunset from Twin Peaks. Although not the best videos, I still wanted to share them and I hope it gives you an idea of the spectacular views we saw on that particular evening (both are virtually the same panorama so you can take your pick from either video~ should you choose to watch~but it comes with a quality warning sign, the second might be better of the two).

The city was just beginning to light up, on one side the sun was setting, remember this. The opposite views over the city show the moon and the buildings gradually lighting up as dusk falls.
Sam has lived in San Francisco for six years and she told me that she has rarely seen such a clear view of Mount Diablo which is frequently shrouded in mist. I actually think it would be a lovely place to visit as I'm sure the views from the top of the mountain would be even more spectacular.

Don't know who that person is getting in the way!! View below is Angel Island.

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Thursday, November 29, 2007

Homeward Bound

Yesterday after meeting Sam for a quick lunch and to see where she works, it was off to the airport for the overnight journey home. Embee was waiting for me at Heathrow and although it was sunny, the temperature was about 12c and I was missing the real warmth of the San Francisco sun that I had left behind less than 10 hours previously.
As we drove up to our house I realised the local Farmers market was being held today. Tired as I felt, I went off to stock up on some essential fruit, veg and eggs, now I feel far too tired to cook so I am sending Embee off to get a take-away and normal service in the kitchen will resume tomorrow.

I have done a little blog reading over the past week but very little commenting, I need to catch up with all the news. Hopefully I'll start telling you about my holiday tomorrow!

BIG THANK YOU TO SAM and FRED and everyone I met in San Francisco who made this holiday memorable xx

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Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Final Post card from San Francisco


I cannot believe that I will be leaving here later today. The week has sped by and Sam and Fred have looked after me so well. I have been wined and dined, here and there and everywhere, and I also met a bunch of very special bloggers. Last night we went to a charity reception for San Francisco Chefs. They are supporting St Jude's Children's Hospital Research. We left before the end, so can you imagine how delighted we were when Sam got a phone call later to say that she had won not one but two raffle prizes (I put my ticket in Sam's name). I'm gutted that I will not be able to go with her to sample the tasting menu at Aqua. However I'm very pleased that Sam will be able to take one of her friends. I'll just have to make sure I get to dine there on my next trip! If you are wondering why Fred won't be going, it's because he's not into fish which is the particular specialty of this restaurant.

See you all when I get back to Bristol.
November 28th 2006: It's not my Birthday

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Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Postcard from San Francisco 6

Where do you think I have been today?


Monday, November 26, 2007

Birthday Boy Ben

Ben this is a big HAPPY 7th BIRTHDAY from San Francisco
I hope you are having a lovely time and you get some great presents.
Love you Lots
Grandma xxxx

November 26th 2006: Happy Birthday Ben

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Sunday, November 25, 2007

Postcard from San Francisco 5

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Yesterday we took a trip to the Ferry Building market, where Sam shops every Saturday. As it is the holiday weekend some of the stalls were not operating, but there were masses of people about and it was quite difficult to browse. By chance we bumped into another blogger. Now how about guessing who that might have been (do you need a clue-she's English)!!
This is a picture of the Ferry Building that I took on the evening I arrived. I will be doing a fuller post when I get home. We also went for a special dinner- more about that later.

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Saturday, November 24, 2007

Postcard 4 San Francisco Sunset

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I wish you had all been here last night to share this beautiful sunset from the top of Twin Peaks.

November 24th 2006: S.A.D

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Friday, November 23, 2007

Postcard from Stinson Beach 3

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You would not believe how hot it was today! So where did we head? For the beach, of course! We ate lunch outside (will tell you about that at a later date), then took a leisurely stroll along the shore and this was one of the views. Just look at that sky, oh and I even managed a paddle in the Pacific!

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Thursday, November 22, 2007

Postcard from San Francisco 2

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Hello everyone. I don't have time to write much but I wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed my first real Thanksgiving Dinner. I was lucky enough to be invited to the home of Fatemeh to join her and her husband and some of Sam's friends for this celebration. As I was in the company of food bloggers the array of food was amazing and everything was so delicious. I think there's a possibility I might be gaining a few more pounds but I'll worry about that when I return home! I took a lot of photos but for today I am just showing you the beautiful table setting.

November 22nd 2006: Just One Dalmation

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A Post Card From San Francisco 1

Today I am sending my first postcard from San Francisco. On this my first full day here in a this lovely city, Sam and I met up with Cookiecrumb and Cranky. After making friends with Bean Sprout, we drove to Napa for lunch, but I'm not going to write about that I'm just going to leave you with a view of the Golden Gate Bridge that I took on the way back into the city.
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I wish everyone a very HAPPY THANKSGIVING.
November 22nd 2006:Organic recipes ' Little Red Goosberries' Daphne Lambert

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Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Beccy's Birthday

Someone may not be happy that I am advertising to the world that she is celebrating her birthday today. However I'm safely out of harm's way in San Francisco, so Sam and I are going to celebrate by raising our champagne glasses to Beccy on her birthday. How I wish we could all be together, but we hope you have a lovely day, Beccy, and you get lots of treats.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY BECCY we love you xxxx

November 21st 2006: Hidden Talents

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

San Francisco here I come!

The rather poor video is a clue to where I will be spending the next week. I'm off to visit Sam and Fred today. I'm not really that keen on travelling alone as I get quite nervous but I'm sure I will cope.
I'll wave from the plane as I'm sure it must pass over where some of you live!

I may be able to keep in touch while I'm away (back on 29th) but I know Sam has got a lot planned so unlikely to be spending much time at the computer. You never know I might just manage to post a few photos so you can see what you are missing!

Have fun while I'm away!
November 20th 2006: Goodbye Dublin

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Monday, November 19, 2007

Fun Monday # 42

I'm not coming out to play this week~ that's a shame good I hear you say one less to read. Honest truth is I couldn't think of anything that would fit the topic especially as I couldn't bend the rules! Anyway just in case anyone looks at this I thought I would say thank you to Karisma it's a good subject, shame I've blotted everything from my memory!
So just to remind you this was the task she set:

"I want you to take a trip down memory lane, and keep right on going, right back to your childhood. And I want to hear "THAT STORY". You remember the one? Yes, you do! The one your parents, siblings, extended family or friends, would never let you forget, live down or get over!"
Next week Blue Momma is hosting and I don't think I will be able to join in that one either. Why~you will need to come back tomorrow to find out!!
Have fun everyone and I will try and read your stories as I know there will be some great tales being told!
November 19th 2006: No Archive

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Sunday, November 18, 2007

Chrysanthemums in Bloom

Looking out of my kitchen window my back garden (yard) is now beginning to look very dull and dreary except for this one spot of colour that will probably last another couple of weeks.

November 18th 2006: At the end of the day

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Saturday, November 17, 2007

New Office Junior!

I don't know about you but we shred a lot of paperwork as I'm a bit paranoid about letting anything with personal details go into the recycling. There is so much identity theft these days so I feel you can't be too careful. We tend to save it up and shred a bag at a time. Since I've retired I keep the shredder in the cellar and do the shredding down there as it's quite a dusty job. Embee has been promising that he would do the shredding but somehow other things got in the way. So last weekend he decided to bring the shredder up to the dining room where he could shred in comfort! I think the fact that I wanted shredded paper to bed the tortoises down spurred him on! After filling three black sacks he decided to leave the rest for another day.....Now I wasn't quite sure when that other day would come (if you get my drift) so on Monday I decided to finish it and clear up. Just as I was finishing my mother came with another bagful that she had been saving. 'Just show me what to do and I'll do it' she said. It was so funny she jumped and squealed every time the shredder started up as it startled her, she found it difficult to open out and feed the paper in, and I think we might have been there all day so no prizes for guessing who ended up doing it! Of course I had to take a photo as she likes being featured on my blog.

As I said to her you really can't get the staff to do the simplest of jobs these days!!!!

Have a good weekend :)
November 17th 2006: Diabetic Food Blogs

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Friday, November 16, 2007

Secret Holiday Ornament Exchange

Julie over at abbilyeverafter is organising a Secret Holiday Ornament Swap. If you are interested in participating let her know before November 21st. You will find the details over at her place.

This is what she says:
Is anyone interested in participating in a secret holiday ornament exchange? If you are, please email me (abbilyeverafter AT hotmail dot com) or leave a comment on this post. I will need your name, email, blog name (if you have one) and mailing address. If you want to participate please let me know by Wednesday, Nov. 21. I will then email you the name and address of another blogger/blog reader and you will send them an ornament. You can spend whatever dollar amount you’d like but please make sure it is a new ornament and something you would proudly hang on your own tree. Ornaments will need to be in the mail by December 7, or sooner, to guarantee Christmas arrival - especially if we have anyone playing from outside the USA. Once your ornament arrives, and you have hung it on your tree, please take a picture of it and post about it. Sound fun?

As she says, it does sound fun I'm joining in how about you!
November 16th 2006: Coffee with Clare


Thursday, November 15, 2007

My plants don't know winter is coming....Tortoises Hibernate

As I took these photos last weekend and I was marveling that many of the flowers were still in full bloom. One of the blueberry bushes still had some flowers and a couple of fruit and the colour of the leaves on another bush were beautiful. Well I know this has to end soon as it's getting much colder and last night we had a frost so I'm now expecting everything to die off. Looking back to last year the first heavy frost came eleven days earlier, so no wonder the plants are confused this year!

A week ago they were still enjoying the late sunshine but they had stopped eating ...

Luckily (before the frost) I decided to hibernate the them on Monday so they are tucked up safe until the spring.

November 15th 2006: Emerald Isle

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Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Witty Wednesday # 27

George Carlin's Views on Aging

Do you realize that the only time in our lives when we like to get old is when we're kids? If you're less than 10 years old, you're so excited about aging that you think in fractions.

"How old are you?" " I'm four and a half!" You're never thirty-six and a half. You're four and a half, going on five! That's the key

You get into your teens, now they can't hold you back. You jump to the next number, or even a few ahead.

"How old are you?" "I'm gonna be 16!" You could be 13, but hey, you're gonna be 16! And then the greatest day of your life . you become 21. Even the words sound like a ceremony . YOU BECOME 21. YESSSS!!!

But then you turn 30. Oooohh, what happened there? Makes you sound like bad milk! He TURNED; we had to throw him out. There's no fun now, you're Just a sour-dumpling. What's wrong? What's changed?

You BECOME 21, you TURN 30, then you're PUSHING 40. Whoa! Put on the brakes, it's all slipping away. Before you know it, you REACH 50 and your dreams are gone.

But wait!!! You MAKE it to 60. You didn't think you would!

So you BECOME 21, TURN 30, PUSH 40, REACH 50 and MAKE it to 60

You've built up so much speed that you HIT 70! After that it's a day-by-day thing; you HIT Wednesday!

You get into your 80's and every day is a complete cycle; you HIT lunch; you TURN 4:30; you REACH bedtime. And it doesn't end there Into the 90s, you start going backwards; "I Was JUST 92."

Then a strange thing happens. If you make it over 100, you become a little kid again. "I 'm 100 and a half!"
May you all make it to a healthy 100 and a half!!

1. Throw out nonessential numbers. This includes age, weight and height. Let the doctors worry about them. That is why you pay "them."

2 Keep only cheerful friends. The grouches pull you down.

3. Keep learning. Learn more about the computer, crafts, gardening, whatever. Never let the brain idle. "An idle mind is the devil's workshop." And the devil's name is Alzheimer's.

4. Enjoy the simple things.

5. Laugh often, long and loud. Laugh until you gasp for breath.

6. The tears happen. Endure, grieve, and move on. The only person, who is with us our entire life, is ourselves. Be ALIVE while you are alive.

7. Surround yourself with what you love , whether it's family, pets, keepsakes, music, plants, hobbies, whatever Your home is your refuge .

8. Cherish your health: If it is good, preserve it. If it is unstable, improve it. If it is beyond what you can improve, get help.

9. Don't take guilt trips. Take a trip to the mall, even to the next county; to a foreign country but NOT to where the guilt is.

10.Tell the people you love that you love them , at every opportunity.

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.

I'll leave you with Disney's Desperate Housewives! We all need to live life to its fullest each day!!
November 14th 2006:Dining a la O'Sullivan


Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Spicy Pumpkin Corn Soup/ Chiromoya update

My friend Tina came back from a trip to visit her goddaughter with a small pumpkin and she gave it to me on the proviso that I would cook up some soup. So I went from this...

to this...

Spicy Pumpkin Corn Soup found on this site

1 Small Pumpkin - seeded, unpeeled ( I peeled and chopped)
2 Tablespoons Oil
1/2 Teaspoon Cumin Seed
1 Cardamom Pod
1/2 Teaspoon Cumin Powder
1/2 Teaspoon Coriander - ground
1/4 Teaspoon Ginger - ground
1/4 Teaspoon Chili Powder
1 Teaspoon Garlic - minced
2 Cups Onion - chopped
1 Cup Cauliflower Flowerets
1/2 Cup Carrot - sliced
11 Ounces Corn - canned, undrained
Salt And Pepper to taste
1/2 Teaspoon Turmeric

Put oil in large pot or kettle. Heat until quite warm. Add cardamom,
and cumin seeds. Cook until seeds crackle. Add Onions, garlic and
powders. sauté until onions are browned. Add cut up pumpkin and
water until not quite covered. Cover and simmer until pumpkin is
tender. Mash or puree. Return to pot and add vegetables.
Cook until desired tenderness.

(I blended the pumpkin but left the veg slightly crunchy and served it with warm bread).

Tina came to lunch last Friday before we went swimming and she pronounced the soup delicious, so I can't ask for more than that.

Chirimoya update.
I am furious with myself as I deleted a whole load of photos from the camera before I had down loaded them. How can you do that! I wanted to recap for labeling so flipped back through saw a couple I had already saved and started deleting and just forgot to stop. Of course the only photos I had of the inside of the fruit was among these pictures. I'm trying to think how best to describe the fruit... it was quite like a pear and it did have a pleasant taste but once you had removed the very hard black pips there was not actually very much fruit left. I'm still not quite sure if I ate it at the right stage of its ripeness!
November 13th 2006: It's nice to see friends

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Monday, November 12, 2007

Fun Monday # 41

Hootin'Anni is trying to confuse bewitch us with this game!
Here are "Mother Anni's" directions..... Well I've précied them just to reduce the uploading time... I'm sure you all know it's 30 large steps ..and snap view.. followed by 15 baby steps and snap view.....

I wondered where these giant steps would take me, particularly as I have shown you lots of my house in past Fun Monday posts. So leaving my computer my large strides took me across the dining room, left turn down the hall, through the porch, out of the front door, down more steps and through a side gate onto the pavement (sidewalk). However, I then couldn't decide which way to point the camera~ so sorry I'm breaking the rules as usual! The first thing I looked at was the scaffold tower that was put up on Friday so that my neighbour, who happens to be a carpenter, could replace some fascia that had blown off during the gales we had last January. I know that's a long time ago and I have been waiting all summer for this work to do done. It is almost impossible to get a small amount of scaffold and that's with my neighbour working in the building trade. Anyway it's all done, now I wonder how long it will take to get the scaffold removed!!
Having decided this was a boring photo I did a couple of turns (on the spot) and took some shots of the garden~ still 30 strides from the computer!

My 15 baby steps took me back to the front door and this was my immediate shot. The hall radiator and Sam's little wicker chair that she's had since she was a toddler (I know I have shown these before sorry for repetition).

After taking the first set of photos I decided I would try again this time turning right from the dining. This led me up the stairs to the top landing and the bathroom was my first shot and my 15 little steps then took me back to my mezzanine level and from that position I got a shot of my mother's bear that sits on her shelf above a little Victorian fireplace. I also got a glimpse of the view across the golf course from her bedroom window (should have presented these pictures the other way around but I'm sure you get the idea)!

I know I'm only supposed to have two photos but mine are clumped together~ well that my excuse!! Now I'm heading over to Anni's place to see if I'm the only deviant!!

I cannot believe it is a year ago today that I was on my way to New England.
November 12th 2006: Oliver

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Sunday, November 11, 2007

The Other Side of the Bridge by Mary Lawson

When Alix over at DC Days reviewed this book, I decided that I would look for it next time I went to the bookshop. I thought it would be a story that my mother and I would enjoy. Alix then decided she would pass it on by having a draw from the people commenting and guess who was lucky enough to get the prize.
When the postman rang twice (yes he really did) on Friday and I saw he had a package I was quite excited as I guessed it was the book. I'm not usually a winner in draws and I was amazed how quickly it arrived. Why you might ask~ well I joined in a summer swap and never did get my parcel which is very disappointing both to the person who took the trouble to send it and to me who gave up long ago of ever receiving it. I know some parcels do get stolen on route so if someone has taken this parcel I trust they enjoyed the content not that I have any idea what was actually in the parcel. As usual I digress so back to the book~ my mother is delighted and she has already started reading it and I will read it after she has finished and then I expect it will go to Beccy when she is here at Christmas.

Alix thank you very much for sharing this book.
November 11th 2006: Inspiration


Armistice Day~ Remembrance Sunday

At 11am on November 11th 1918, an armistice (peace agreement) was signed which brought to an end the war between Britain and her allies and Germany. November 11th is called Armistice Day in Britain, and there is a two-minute silence at 11 o'clock. On either the Sunday before or the Sunday after Armistice Day (on a day known as Remembrance Sunday) there is a ceremony in London at the Cenetaph. Here people remember those who have died or been injured in wars. The ceremony was first held in 1921. Over 1.75 million soldiers and sailors from Britain and the Commonwealth lost their lives in the two World Wars, and many more have died in more recent conflicts.

It is important that we do not forget all the brave people who died for their country or the families who have lost their loved ones.
November 11th 2006: Saturday Saunter

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Saturday, November 10, 2007

Friendship Award

I had a another lovely surprise this week when Kila momto3cubs gave me this award. I think this is a lovely sentiment. Since I started blogging I have made friends around the world and I so enjoy my daily browse to see what is happening in everyones lives. So instead of choosing individuals I would like to pass this award on to everyone who reads my blog. I consider you all to be my friends.

Big thank you Kila:)
Hope you all enjoy your weekend.

November 10th 2006: Traditional Champ

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Friday, November 09, 2007

How to Survive a Heart Attack Alone

I thought I would share this with you. It was sent to me by one of our Food Coop members who sometimes reads my blog but never comments. This is the first time I have used the blogger video upload so fingers crossed it works.

Let's hope none of us ever need this information.


November 9th 2006: Recycling

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Thursday, November 08, 2007

Ladies Lunching Organic

On Tuesday I met my friend Tina for lunch at The Better Food Co. Anyone who reads my posts regularly may recall Sam and I did some food shopping there for this meal that we sourced from local food. However, we didn't have time to stop and sample the food so I was keen for a return visit to do just that.
My friend Tina readily agreed to join me and we both chose the same dish of~ Stir fry wild rice with cashew nuts and honey. All the food is organic and it was delicious and packed full of lovely vegetables (red cabbage, onions, courgettes, broccoli and mushrooms). I think we might be lunching there again as there were a lot of things on the menu we fancied and all the salads looked really fresh. It gets very busy and you need to be there early. It was interesting because one of the guys dropped a plate and I jokingly said ' hope you don't get your wages docked'. His reply was no problem we buy all our plates from charity shops~ what a good idea!

I also wanted to try this fruit that I have read about on food blogs so when I saw it I couldn't resist buying one. I haven't tried it yet~ I think the fact that it was described as 'apple/custard' in the shop was the attraction. I'll let you know what it's like.


November 8th 2006: Get That Car clean

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Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Witty Wednesday # 26

This is another joke that John sent me

All you could wish for

A man walks into a restaurant with a full-grown ostrich behind him. The waitress asks them for their orders. The man says, "A hamburger, fries and a coke," and turns to the ostrich,"What's yours?" "I'll have the same," says the ostrich. A short time later the waitress returns with the order "That will be $9.47 please," and the man reaches into his pocket and pulls out the exact change for payment. The next day, the man and the ostrich come again and the man says, "A hamburger, fries and a coke." The ostrich says, "I'll have the same. "Again the man reaches into his pocket and pays with exact change.This becomes routine until the two enter again. "The usual?" asks the waitress. "No, this is Friday night, so I will have a steak, baked potato and a salad," says the man. "Same," says the ostrich.Shortly the waitress brings the order and says, "That will be $32.62. "Once again the man pulls the exact change out of his pocket and places it on the table. The waitress cannot hold back her curiosity any longer. "Excuse me sir. How do you manage to always come up with the exact change in your pocket every time?"
"Well," says the man, "several years ago I was cleaning the attic and found an old lamp. When I rubbed it, a Genie appeared and offered me two wishes. My first wish was that if I ever had to pay for anything, I would just put my hand in my pocket and the right amount of money would always be there." "That's brilliant!" says the waitress. "Most people would ask for a million dollars or something, but you'll always be as rich as you want for as long as you live!"That's right. Whether it's a gallon of milk or a Rolls Royce, the exact money is always there," says the man. The waitress asks,
"What's with the ostrich"? The man sighs, pauses and answers, "My second wish was for a tall chick with a big ass and long legs who agrees with everything I say."
Now this one came from Jill. We both wondered if this would cause offense, but none is intended and we are both Christians and found it funny.

An Atheist in the Woods

An atheist was walking through the woods.
"What majestic trees"!
"What powerful rivers"!
"What beautiful animals"!
He said to himself.

As he was walking alongside the river, he heard a rustling in the bushes behind him. He turned to look. He saw a 7-foot grizzly bear charge towards him.

He ran as fast as he could up the path. He looked over his shoulder and saw that the bear was closing in on him.

He looked over his shoulder again, and the bear was even closer. He tripped and fell on the ground. He rolled over to pick himself up but saw that the bear was right on top of him, reaching for him with his left paw and raising his right paw to strike him.

At that instant the Atheist cried out, "Oh my God!"

Time Stopped.
The bear froze.
The forest was silent.

As a bright light shone upon the man, a voice came out of the sky. "You deny my existence for all these years, teach others I don't exist and even credit creation to cosmic accident." "Do you expect me to help you out of this predicament? Am I to count you as a believer"?

The atheist looked directly into the light, "It would be hypocritical of me to suddenly ask you to treat me as a Christian now, but perhaps you could make the BEAR a Christian"?

"Very Well," said the voice.

The light went out. The sounds of the forest resumed. And the bear dropped his right paw, brought both paws together, bowed his head and spoke:

"Lord bless this food, which I am about to receive from thy bounty through Christ our Lord, Amen."

Whatever you are doing today I hope you are smiling :)

November 7th 2006: Sam's Toulouse Sausage

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Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Fungi Forage

You might remember a couple of weeks back I mentioned I went on fungi foraging. This was an organised walk and I enjoyed it so much I was planning on going again to a different area. Unfortunately I missed this second walk, the friend I was going with went away and I got caught up with other things so I'm just going to show you what I saw on that first walk.
This guy, Justin Smith is a mycologist (fungi expert) and he told us what we were looking at. He does lots of talks and research and as one would expect the proper names for all the fungi just roll off his tongue. I didn't even try and remember them and in any case most had common names which, of course, I've already forgotten and did I think to take a pen with me~ no how stupid!
Roger Phillips has has produced a number of books over the past 25 years and he has a very good website where you can learn more about the interesting fungi you might find where you live.
The top ones I do recall are Shaggy Incaps and they are poisonous. The fungi in the bottom left picture can be eaten and my friend took them home. We saw lots of clumps of the brown fungus.

The bottom left picture shows fungi called 'King Arthur's Cakes' named because of the legend. These are very hard and can be used for burning.

The pink one I think might be edible and has an odd smell. You might just be able to see some of the spores in the photo on the left

Here is some Jelly Ear fungus (name self explanatory) which is cultivated and widely used in parts of Asia. It's apparently quite chewy and no I didn't try it. The other photo has a little nut hidden in the end of a tree stump, we decided this was the work of a squirrel.

The red fungus was the most unusual (apparently) and was the last one we found right at the end of the walk, unfortunately I could not get a very good photo as it was nestling in the bottom of a tree and I didn't fancy lying on the ground!

This last picture is fungi that I found a few days after the walk growing by the wall just outside my house. We also had a few stray ones growing in the lawn.

It was a very interesting walk and I really wish I had been better prepared to take notes, maybe next year! Anyway hope you enjoy seeing the photos.

November 6th 2006: Echo Lake