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HomeBrew Lager….

The resting period is over!…

Homebrew Lager...

The first attempt at our own lager is ready for drinking. A European style lager, with a mild flavour. A success for our first attempt though. We’re enjoying the first bottles tonight!

Next up, the bottling of our Malbec, on Saturday. That’s best after about 6 months apparently, although, I’m not sure how we’re going to last that long with it sitting there….

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Where Have All The Males Gone….

Never mind the vampires, I’ve just seen a rather frightening CBC documentary….

I had a comment the other day,…

"Wow, look at your son! Look at the size of him. What are you feeding him, steroids?"

"Actually, no. The meat I feed him hasn’t got any. How come your boy is tiny?"

As always, anyone who knows me, you were warned. This hasn’t just come out of the blue.

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Homebrew Launches….

"Let’s make our own!", he said. Well, the time has arrived….

Bottles are ready and bottling begins in under 24 hours! My european lager is ready to go, although the wine, a delightful Malbec, is still a few weeks off.

Next step, is my own vineyard….

In the meantime, the missus, Miss, and Grandma, are off to some midnight launch of the New Moon DVD. Some "do" or other is going on at a local store. I’m staying at home, to polish a bottle of the old "el vino", after "beer bottle prep"…. I don’t do vampires.

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Tomatos…

At last, some produce from the garden….

Tomatos

The “Tiger Tommies” are especially good!

It took some chicken manure from the new neighbour to kick the damn things into gear, and since surrounding the bases of the plants, they’ve gone into overdrive. Even the pepper plant is entering “warp speed”! The soil clearly needs a bit more than just regular manure and compost to provide the right nutrients, something to bear in mind for the future.

Blogging has taken a bit of a back burner for the last couple of weeks, thanks to summer holidays, keeping the kids entertained and trying to get our future plans in order. I hope to be back “on the ball” now, as school is gearing up to begin again.

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Organic Food IS Better….

So, “organic food is no better!”, I heard you all cry! “You’re mad! You’re being conned!”….

Yeah, right….

Half of all the fruit & veg you buy is contaminated.
http://tinyurl.com/nmuwmk

ALMOST HALF of the fresh fruit and veg sold across the UK is contaminated with toxic pesticides, according to the latest scientific surveys for the government.

Nearly every orange, 94% of pineapples and 90% of pears sampled were laced with traces of chemicals used to kill bugs. High proportions of apples, grapes and tomatoes were also tainted, as were parsnips, melons and cucumbers.

Alarmingly, as much as a quarter of the food on sale in 2008 – the date of the latest figures – was found to contain multiple pesticides. In some cases, up to ten different chemicals were detected in a single sample.
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Experts warn that the “cocktail effect” of so many different chemicals endangers health. They also point out that some of the pesticides are not only cancer-causing but also so-called “gender-benders” – chemicals that disrupt human sexuality.

I see,…. “cancer causing” as well as “gender bending” chemicals, that “disrupt human sexuality”?

What’s that? Speak up. You’ve gone quiet, you know who you are, you were happy to laud the FSA report at me the other day, what’s happened? Where’s your cocky put downs now?

So, the headline, on the BBC website, from the 29th July 2009;

Organic ‘has no health benefits’
http://tinyurl.com/ngjz27
Organic food is no healthier than ordinary food, a large independent review has concluded.

…. is basically, false, if not an outright lie. It clearly IS healthier, as I’m not ingesting pesticides capable of causing cancer or turning me into a female version of myself, or my son into his sister and vice versa. Not to mention, that the review was so large, it failed to take into account the pesticide issue, one of the main reasons people prefer organic produce.

You can believe the FSA if you want. I don’t. I’m sticking with organic food…. sorry, let me rephrase that, I’m sticking with naturally grown food. You can have the lab/chemically enhanced stuff if you want.

But then I’m going to remind you of it next time I hear you comment about how healthy my kids look compared to yours….

Rant over. For now….

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Fluoride News…

I see that in the UK, dumping fluoride into the drinking water debate is still raging…

Health Secretary calls for universal water fluoridation
http://tinyurl.com/lbka7d
Andy Burnham, new Health Secretary, has called for universal water fluoridation despite protests over ‘mass medication’ and concern over links to cancer and bone disease.

I particularly like the “Mr Burnham was accused of a ‘conflict of interest’ as he has been a supporter and vice-president of the British Fluoridation Society for a number of years” part….

….. so, with that in mind, I bring the following article to your attention and as always, make sure you are informed by reading up on this subject before you agree to allow your children, not to mention yourselves, “mass medicated”…

A Fluoride-Free Pineal Gland is More Important than Ever
http://tinyurl.com/mv434c

There has been some controversy over the activity of adding synthetic fluoride to municipal water supplies and elsewhere, but not enough. The seriousness of this issue is more than what most realize. Fluoridation ranks with GMO’s and tainted, forced vaccinations among the great crimes against humanity.

What needs to be understood is the difference in fluorides. There are two types of fluoride. Calcium Fluoride, which appears naturally in underground water supplies, is relatively benign. However, too much consumed daily can lead to bone or dental problems. Calcium is used to counter fluoride poisoning when it occurs. This redeeming factor indicates that the calcium in naturally formed calcium fluoride neutralizes much of fluoride’s toxic effects.

On the other hand, the type of fluorides added to water supplies and other beverages and foods are waste products of the nuclear, aluminum, and now mostly the phosphate (fertilizer) industries. The EPA has classified these as toxins: fluorosilicate acid, sodium silicofluoride, and sodium fluoride.

End Fluoridation, Say 600 Physicians, Dentists, Scientists And Environmentalists
http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/79326.php

‘In a statement released recently, over 600 professionals are urging Congress to stop water fluoridation until Congressional hearings are conducted. They cite new scientific evidence that fluoridation, long promoted to fight tooth decay, is ineffective and has serious health risks … Signer Dr. Arvid Carlsson, winner of the 2000 Nobel Prize for Medicine, says, “Fluoridation is against all principles of modern pharmacology. It’s really obsolete”.’

HCC Fluoride/Infant Formula Warning
http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/GE0708/S00131.htm

‘The Policy and Strategy committee last night resolved to advise parents and caregivers … of advice issued by the American Dental Association (ADA) with regards to fluoridated water. In a November 9th 2006 email alert sent to all of its members, the ADA noted that “Infants less than one year old may be getting more than the optimal amount of fluoride if their primary source of nutrition is powdered or liquid infant formula mixed with water containing fluoride.” The ADA went on to advise: “If using a product that needs to be reconstituted, parents and caregivers should consider using water that has no or low levels of fluoride”.’

And don’t just take their word for it. I’m not aware of the ministers scientific qualifications, so let’s hear from an expert, (Do a search on google for more info and see what the other experts are saying)…..

Fluoride may be destroying our bones, our teeth and overall health… it doesn’t need to be added to our water and we may be taking unnecessary risks by doing so. – Dr. Hardy Limeback, a leading Canadian fluoride authority, former fluoride advocate. Now a Professor of Dentistry at the University of Toronto.

Puts that “conflict of interest” in a new light eh….

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Wow!!!….

Sitting on the beach, last weekend, in the Okanagan Campsite, just past Peachland….

South Campsite...

There’s 2 parts to this site, a north and a south. Both a great little sites, but the north part is terraced down to the lake, although the beach is beautiful. The south is all flat and the beach ain’t too bad either. Take your pick, the sites in both parts were excellent in my book, all with tables, fire pit/BBQ’s, some secluded, some open allowing you to meet your “neighbours”.

In true Canadian fashion, as we walked round the bay, back to our bench, we got talking to a couple of guys, a pilot and his old man, down on the dog part of the beach, with a couple of labradors. It didn’t take long before we were offered a beer and we stayed chatting for an hour, as the kids joined in keeping the dogs entertained. They were regulars, on this stretch of beach every weekend, hurling huge sticks into the lake for their dogs to fetch, whilst drinking a few cans and chatting, even apparently in the depths of winter.

We walked back along the beach with them and got the campstove crank’d up and fried some organic smokies, that we have discovered at the Farmers Market, homemade by a German couple. (They make a great breakfast roll, which has now become part of the whole Saturday morning market experience, forgoing the usual toast and cereal. A bit of a habit now actually….)

Organic Smokies...

Sam took this one, as I was handed mine….

Wow!

…. they were bloody tasty though! Wrapped up with tomatos, lettuce and cucumber, a definite hit.

And as we ate them, we had this view, from the camp table, as the sun went down behind us….

South Campsite Beach...

With sites like this, the tent is great, but I’m considering a caravan. Nothing fancy, just with 4 beds is enough. All we need is somewhere to sleep and store the food. Just being able to pull in to sites like this one, for $12 a night, (6 quid, in the UK, roughly….) is tempting. Think about it, a lakefront property for $12! All summer holiday long. Some of these sites even have wifi now, which means I can get some work done as well, whilst the kids play on the beach….

…. I’m off up the caravan showroom tomorrow.

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First, It Was Baked Beans….

Then came the chips/fries, whatever you want to call them….

Homemade Fries/Chips...

What can I say? I find myself getting more and more fed up with the food you get from the shops. (… that’s the store, not the farmers market or the independent stores we go to….)

Bag’s of McCains fries…. tasteless. Sorry, they are. Straight from the oven, they seem to be OK, but is that ‘cos they’re hot? I had some the other day, after coming in, that had cooled a little and to be honest, I couldn’t finish ’em. They were simply tasteless. So, “why not make them like my gran used to?“, he thought. “from spuds, after washing and using a wavy chopping thing…. and then I’ve got my own organic chips/fries as opposed to these manky things!“….

They were so much better. Tossed and coated in oil and then baked in the oven. Simple. Had them with a nice salad and chicken kabobs. Only problem? Didn’t make enough. It won’t happen again.

In fact they were so much better, we’re having them for Sunday lunch too, with homemade/handpressed burgers….in

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More Planting….

The raspberry canes are in!…

Raspberry Canes....

A friend gave us 7 canes from her mum’s garden now she has moved and we whacked ’em in smartish. I returned the one we bought from Home Depot, as, to be blunt, it was cr@p! It looked like a twig and it wasn’t looking like it was ever going to progress any further.

So, the beds up behind our little deck, look like this….

The Plot #1....

If you click the photo and go to the Flickr page, through the magic of the interweb, I’ve put some notes on the photo showing what’s where, but there is now raspberries, strawberries, courgettes, onions, carrots and tomatos all planted. Not all outside yet, it’s still getting cold at night.

The Deck....

Left looks up at the crops and right, down the hill to the house and looking out across the lake.

Plenty of books out from the library, on making beer and wine, so that’s next. Along with chickens….

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Gardening in the Sunshine….

Well, we didn’t make Penticton, spending the entire weekend in the back garden planting our “crops” and building a new composting bin….

The weather was warm and sunny all day long, both days, so we stayed put and got cracking. Carrots, tomatoes, courgettes along with some other things. We’re just figuring out where to put some strawberries and raspberries. Must be getting fired up and going well, the missus wants to start her own gardening/veggie blog/website….

Prawns....

Saturday night, end of day #1, prawns, steak and salad on the BBQ, with a couple of beers and a glass or 3 of wine by the fire pit….

Fire....

Gggrrrrr…..

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