Eden Hill Journal

Comments, dreams, stories, and rantings from a middle-aged native of Maine living on a shoestring and a prayer in the woods of Maine. My portion of the family farm is to be known as Eden Hill Farm just because I want to call it that and because that's the closest thing to the truth that I could come up with. If you enjoy what I write, email me or make a comment. If you enjoy Eden Hill, come visit.

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Location: Maine, United States

Monday, October 09, 2017

Gabrielle Louise

I've been on a bit of a health foods kick today. I made my whole wheat bread and it was baked and out of the oven by eleven this morning. Then it was on to a pot of black bean chili started in a base of fresh-pressed wild apple cider that my wife and I pressed Saturday afternoon at her brother's place. All the time I was cooking I was listening to a new CD my wife bought of a mature young female Colorado folk singer.
Here's how all those things tie together.
I needed to have the health food kick today to recover from eating this enormous pastrami Rubin at a family gathering of my wife's brother's wife's family Saturday afternoon after we had finished making the cider. It was a restaurant meal and was supposed to be by reservation so we crashed the party about an hour, maybe an hour-and-a-half late thinking everyone would be having desert by then and we'd just have a desert but oh no, the meal hadn't even been served so we each had a Sam Adams OCTOBERFEST and ordered a meal. Mine was pastrami on rye - stuffed (!!!) with pastrami.
I'm not much of a meat eater but not because I don't like a good Rubin, or for that matter a good feed of just about any good meat. Not eating meat is a health thing for me. So today I just needed to pig out on fiber!
So there's that connection. Now to the music which is also connected to the family gathering at the restaurant.
The family gathering was celebrating the presence of a charming young musician member of the family who had agreed to come to Maine to perform for family and friends at a tiny fireman's hall in her grandmother's tiny (by small-town Maine standards) town. It was at that event where my wife bought her newest CD and that's what I was listening to this morning. The musician's name is Gabrielle Louise.
A little confession here...
At the restaurant we sat at the same table as Gabrielle and her mother and I did my very best, a genuine manly effort, to ignore this very attractive tall blonde female, Gabrielle. Nobody even introduced us. At the evening performance where she was by far even more attractive I did the same thing, seriously trying to ignore her.
I was able to keep up the effort through at least the first two or three songs, but she is one convincing musician. Her music broke down my resistance and by the end of the show I was - let's say - about as firm on my conviction to ignore her as melted chocolate. My cause was lost.
Anyway, her last song Saturday was by request. I have found it on YouTube. It's called Try the Door. She performs it here at eTown Hall in Boulder.

Sunday, October 01, 2017

Mara's One One One Peanut Butter Cookies

Here's a recipe for quick and simple but outstandingly delightful peanut butter cookies. All you need are three ingredients for cookies that melt in your mouth with flavor.

One egg
One cup of sugar
One cup of peanut butter

Mara never told me how to go about combining these three ingredients or how to bake the cookies and being a guy I was too embarrassed to ask, so I have been experimenting. The last two times I made these cookies I beat the egg first and then mixed in the sugar until they were blended well. No need for an electric mixer. Then I mixed in the peanut butter until the dough had an even texture. Then it's onto greased cookie sheets and into the oven. Simple as that!

The last two times I made these I used different oven temperatures and different cooking times. The first was one single giant cookie baked below 300 degrees oven temperature and the cookie came out a bit undercooked which means it broke easy coming off the cookie sheet but was enormously soft and tasty!
The most recent try I used a 325 degree oven and baked the 16 cookies for 30 minutes. They came out overcooked but not burned. They had quite a crunch once they were cooled down.
So I'm tempted to use a 300 degree oven and bake for 30 minutes next time I make these.

I have tried adding other ingredients to the recipe. Coconut didn't work and neither did cocoa powder. The cookies lost their charm that way. But I have tried chocolate chips and the cookies were still delightfully delicious. They also do well with rolled oats. I used a half cup of rolled oats in my most recent two batches with good results.

Mara told me this recipe came from her grandmother so I want to thank both Mara and her grandmother and I'll bet if you try them yourself, you will too!

These go on the menu for sure.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Windows 10 Microsoft Edge Hotmal Glitch

Update:
Looks like I spoke too soon (read my post below).
The problem has returned already. Sad face :^(

I use Hotmail as my primary email and have been using it for somewhere around twenty years now. Last Saturday, about the time Irma was swiping the coast of Cuba, Hotmail decided to start sending multiple emails whenever I hit Send. To make things worse, an error message came up suggesting I didn't have an Internet connection so after testing my connection, I hit Send again and presto, another 8 to 13 duplicate emails were sent again despite the fact that Hotmail gave me the same error message.
I tried Googling the problem but with no luck. Finally after four days of this it dawned on me to Google the exact wording of the error message. Google gave me only one result, a Microsoft forum.
One of the responses gave an 8-step solution that seems to have worked. So far so good at least. I've sent myself two test messages and everything worked correctly, no errors and no duplicates.
So here's the error message and the solution:
"Error: The message can't be sent because your device isn't connected to the Internet. Try again when you regain connectivity."
Here's the solution from Microsoft:
  1. Launch Edge.
  2. Click the icon with the three horizontal lines. 
  3. Click the clock icon to show the History pane.
  4. Click Clear all history.
  5. Check Browsing History.
  6. Check Cookies and saved website data.
  7. Check Cached data and files.
  8. Click Clear.
My thanks to Ron Sommer

Wednesday, September 06, 2017

Greek Oregano in the Maine Highlands

Two or three years ago I started a small rock garden out in my back yard for growing some Greek oregano from seed that I am thinking came from Fedco down in Clinton just off I-95. For years I had a small oregano patch that never did much growing but did come back year after year despite its shady location. I attribute its survival to compost-enriched soil more than to any other factor. Who'd a thunk something like oregano would grow up here in the Maine Highlands!
This summer my rock garden oregano patch finally thrived, most likely because last winter I cut quite a few of the mostly linden shade trees that have for decades been expanding their reach over and under my back yard garden. So last month I harvested a very large fistful of fresh green oregano stalks just as the plants were flowering. They've been hanging overhead downstairs by the woodstove and have been dry for weeks. Today I decided I'd see just what it was that I had so I took a large stainless bowl and crumpled my dry treasure by hand to get as many of the stems out as I could. What I wound up with from my tiny rock garden was more than a quart jar full of oregano spice.
To test the worth of this new treasure I heated a can of Campbell's Tomato Soup mixed with some raw cucumber and carrot relish that I made yesterday and a teaspoon at least of this oregano. I overcooked the soup but let me tell you, eating that soup was an oregano experience! My head nearly ignited with oregano flavor!

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Energy News

I came across a link on YouTube this morning and clicked to watch. The  video is of a talk given by one of the co-founders of Greenpeace. He outlines his history in Greenpeace taking his own history back to growing up in Winter Harbor, a remote village on the northwest shore of Vancouver Island off the coast of British Columbia. His name is Patrick Moore.
You've no doubt heard, even recently, that carbon dioxide threatens to destroy life as we know it, in large part because of once Vice President Al Gore's movie. We've heard that there is no debate, science now knowing all the facts we need to impede carbon consumption regardless of the impact on civilization. We've no doubt very recently heard or read that 97% of scientists are in agreement.
Then there are people like this:
Greenpeace Co-Founders Warns of Global Climate Change Scam / Global Warming Hoax !

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Anyone Can Be President

In the United States, can anyone be elected President or are we represented by a ruling class? If it's the ruling class thing, which in most people's minds it seems to be, then what disqualifies the Trump family from that class of people? What makes them unqualified? What disqualifies me? For that matter what disqualifies you or your children or grandchildren or anybody else that you know or are related to?

Saturday, July 01, 2017

Nine Eleven Soda

Recently I have been asking myself why nobody talks about how when you watch the videos of the Twin Towers falling down you see all these plumes of material arching upward, then outward, then downward. What could possibly cause such a seemingly impossible phenomenon in the strictly gravitational collapse of such a heavy structure? Shouldn't everything be going down instead of up? Gravity makes things fall down, not up. Explosions make things "blow up".

The answer must be an obvious one since nobody talks about it. I was watching this video this morning on YouTube and this is by far the best video I have seen showing these arching plumes yet the narrator doesn't mention their initially upward trajectory.

So I have to conclude that the answer must be so simple it would just not even dawn on anybody that an explanation is necessary, that some mindless nitwit like me wouldn't just automatically know what these things are from.

Well after thinking about it all day it finally dawned on me. There are so many of these things blowing up it must be from something that would be everywhere throughout the building and that would, when crushed, explode. Bearing in mind that this was some sixteen years ago, what else could it possibly be from other than the crushing of all the Coke and Pepsi machines?