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Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Thank You Willis Carrier for Inventing Air Conditioning

Sunday morning, our air conditioner went out.
We've been experiencing record highs, record drought and Sunday was expected to reach 105. There are forest fires all over the state, two not very far from me. It has been a hellish summer for the wildlife, for certain, and now that our air went out we feared we'd have to move to a hotel and board the dogs..but hopefully, we will get the A/C repaired before we had to do something like that. Then we remembered times past when we either didn't have air conditioning or even summers past when we might have only used it for a few days in August and been fine with attic fans or window fans for most of the rest of the summer. I certainly couldn't get along with just a fan in this heat.

The past decade's summers have all been getting hotter and hotter.

We called the air conditioning repairman who was already swamped with calls from the entire weekend. It would be Monday morning before they could get to us. Monday morning, I called at 9 and they weren't sure when they could come..that scared me..however, they came around 10:30 am and after having tried to cool the house down all night with fans, and closing the windows back when the outside air was much hotter than inside, the temperature inside was a humid 89 with four fans running in the house by the time the repairman arrived. Thank God for insulation. It was already 103 outside when it was repaired.
It reached a record high of 107 yesterday. Thank you Travis the repairman and thank you Willis Carrier for inventing air conditioning. I don't know that I'd get along without either of you.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

My Personal Comment Policy

I should have posted this a LONG time ago.
The only way that comments sent to me to appear here will ever appear here from this point on are as edits to my post that they are commenting on, quoting from the commentary or in a comment from me, quoting the comment sent to me from another.

It makes no difference if the comment is praising what I've written or is posted to argue or correct what I've written. I may or may not share negative comments; it depends on the tone and purpose.

While I only announce this now, I decided to do this many months ago when I first discovered that some of the people whose comments I had posted later informed me their comment here had made them the target of hate or harassment on their own blogger page.

 If you have a comment that still appears here on my page and wish your comment to also be removed, please contact me ASAP and I will do so.

Still feel free to write to me with commentary and if it is not hate speech, irrelevant ad hominem/personal attack or inflammatory trolling, I'll share as edits or copy paste what you wish to share as I did today with a recent one from Leah after I advised her what was going on. She'd written me to ask why a comment she'd sent hadn’t appeared after nearly a month. When I informed her why I was no longer posting comments, she then asked me to still share what she had said, but please do so in your own post.

This is what inspired me to create and post this "policy" to both explain to others who have submitted comments I've not posted and who wrote to me asking why, or who insulted me for being 'chicken' for not posting their hate speech commentary, and finally to address those who have gone around slandering me, oddly enough, because I wouldn't post their slander about me they sent in comments! Only those people whose comments I removed because they asked me to remove them already knew what was going on before this notice.

If you want to slam me with hate speech or libel, do it on your own pages. I don't claim entitlement to control what others think, believe or say, but I do control what appears here on *my* page. This is a bigot free zone. I speak out against bigots of any sort, but they are clearly not welcome here.

And to those who write with compliments; I am always so very grateful to receive them. You're free to keep them coming :)

I am always very happy to have my ego stroked with a compliment but I don't need to put it out there for all to see to risk making anyone else a target of the bigots I speak out against. My ego isn't *that* big or fragile that I need to have your compliments posted there for others to see, it's well enough to know personally that I've helped and I've thanked each of you personally who have written to compliment me.

Not every unpublished comment is about a controversial topic or one involving bigotry. I didn't even post comments I've received about the mother in law's tongue blooms, an apparently popular entry when people search for a photo online asking if they bloom. Apparently, that photo draws attention to my blog on a regular basis and I get notes and comments asking me about my plant and how I get it to bloom. I answer that I keep it outside half the year on the eastern side of my house where it gets good morning sunshine and water it when the soil is dry and that's it. I've had to repot it since the photo was taken and it is now almost twice the size, but it still blooms.

If you have commentary you want to share here to be seen, especially if it adds relevant content to the topic at hand, I'll post it if it doesn't violate the guidelines I've listed above, but will post as I've indicated above.

Whatever screen name you wish to be used I'll use, but I will not have it posted in a manner they can link directly to your page.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Almond Cookies, & Almond and Date Cookies

Another recipe request

I didn't take a photo of the last batch I made. Perhaps next time I bake more, I'll take a photo and place it on this blog before they all disappear!

1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour
1 cup ground almonds
Additional whole almonds for the top of the cookies
¼ teaspoon baking powder

1 stick butter, softened (but not melted completely)
¾ cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon almond extract
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract

Stir together flour, ground almonds and baking powder and set aside

cream butter and sugar together
Then add almond extract and vanilla extract
Then beat in egg
Stir all this into the dry mixture
Cover with plastic and chill in the fridge for an hour
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Form cookies from approx 1 tablespoon dough, roll into a ball, place on ungreased cookie sheet and press an almond indented into the center of each ball. Place balls at least an inch apart from one another

Bake approximately 11 minutes ..do not let them brown, let them set… look for the edges to be slightly golden

For the apparent crowd favorite: almond and date cookies

I added the extra ingredient to the above recipe: : ¾ cup chopped dates (you can add a little more if you want).

You can use any sugar cookie recipe, using butter and the ball drop cookie method and just add 1 tsp almond extract and 1 cup ground almonds to the recipe and the dates if you wish.

If you use a store bought sugar cookie mix, make as package directs except.. make sure to use BUTTER and NOT margarine, and add about 2 tablespoons of all purpose flour to the mix to make them softer, and omit the vanilla extract ( since they will have it already in the sugar cookie mix). Just add your almond extract and almonds and/or dates as directed above.
For using the mix..
Add the ground almonds after everything else is mixed and you don’t need to let the dough sit long..maybe 15 minutes.
That’s really the easiest way to make these and what I often do to save a little time.

These also taste great with the chopped dates alone in them.