Monday, August 31, 2009

State Fair: Animals and Pictures of Food

How can you not love the State Fair? In Alaska, the State Fair always meant giant cabbages and rides and winning blue ribbons. In Minnesota, if I've learned anything, it's that the State Fair means Deep-Fried-Things (preferably On-A-Stick).
Tricia is demonstrating the proper excitement to show about "Cheese on a Stick." And who can ignore the draw of "Fresh Fried Fruit On A Stick"?
But the mandatory pictures of every single thing we ate were not on my camera, so I cannot share that with you today.
The Star Tribune gave out Bacon Balm Mmmm tasty!
Sadly this was instead of the map of the fair on a stick with the best food (and newest food-on-a-stick) identified. The lack of such a map made food finding much more difficult than prior years. But the bacon chapstick eased the pain.

I've been to the MN State Fair three times before, but I've never really looked at the animals before. This time I was looking through the eyes of Simon. Alpacas!

Sheep are stupid! They eat their cages.

The lamb lead, it turns out, is a lamb showing competition crossed with a fashion show. The lamb in the foreground is wearing several necklaces. The girl made her own wool dress. She's 13.

This is some breed of chicken called a silkie. I found online where the breed is described as "An oddity of oddities of the poultry and pet world."

And this breed of chicken looks like a teenager who's refusing to cut his hair.

This rabbit looks like my old Himalayan cat.

Join us next time for art and butter at the Fair! Or food. Which ever comes first.

Edit: I'm trying out new blogging software, so for the moment, you can't click on the photos and see larger versions. They can be found in this picasa album. I'm still not sure what I think of the software. I'm looking for a better WYSIWYG editor than blogger provides. Ideas? Anyone?

August (err. July?) Part II

When we left off, we were in Montreal with really tall people, much taller than myself. Following Montreal, Mom and I headed to rural Eastern Ontario to visit my aunt and uncle.

I thought I'd already blogged about this, but apparently the internet ate my blog post. So this is their house. I would like to state for the record that screened porches ARE AWESOME. Particularly in buggy parts of the world. Even more particularly when the bugs like to eat you. (When you is, in fact, an unveiled reference to me.) Yes. I love screened porches. They are not screened in this picture, but were in real life.

We had a lovely 22 hours or so in the pictured house with my aunt and uncle eating lovely food and catching up. Then we were off on the road again.

My grandparents have two homes. A winter home, a condo in the city, and a summer home, a hobby farm or cottage in the country. Seeing as how it was summer, we headed to the farm, which is in the middle of no where. We drove up there and were greeted by my grandparents and a lovely warm dinner.

The next day we did more crazy road tripping as my grandparents needed to go to a funeral and an anniversary party, so we drove about five hours round trip to their condo and then another town. No pictures of that, sorry.

My grandfather loves the farm and maintains two hiking trails on the property. The first is a section of the Bruce Trail, Ontario's version of the Appalachian Trail. The second is a trail that's just on the property called "On Yonder Hill." On day two at the farm, mom and I hiked most of it. Here we are in mosquito protective gear.

Off for a family history tour in the evening. In which Grandma decides to wear the Obama/Biden button I gave her,
we see the house she grew up in,

I decide to buy a house overlooking Georgian Bay
and we see a rainbow during our picnic.

The next day was basically taken up by mom doing yard work, then falling off a ladder, and then dealing with the after effects of her falling off a ladder. (And I got to ride an electric commuter bike.) Then we drove home over the next few days.

But that's boring, so I'll end here with delicious wild black raspberries.

Monday, August 10, 2009


Well, it's the middle of August. I've gotten a handful of cherry tomatoes and harvested three full size tomatoes this morning, some of which went on my breakfast tomato sandwich, the first of the season. (Er...this was a week ago.) (Also, I was proud that my morning breakfast was 98% local food. All local except for about 1/4 teaspoon of sugar...) The beans are apparently not dead, but they're starting to grow and I have some zucchinis coming soon.

Where, you might ask, have I been? Well, dear readers (all five of you - Mom, Reid, Erin, Simon, & Ivan- If there are more, please let yourself be known!), I have been on vacation and then sequestered in my office or in a corn field in Iowa. So I give you pictorial & literary proof of my travels.

I flew to visit my parents and brother in early July and embarked on a five state, two province, 2400 mile road trip with my mom to visit relatives & Simon.

Exhibit A: In which my mom and I crash (not literally) at Simon's house and I get to meet Ivan and spread bacony joy. If you are confused, I am in fact Simon P. In most situations, I do not come prepared with bacon. Although I just discovered bacon chapstick exists, so that may change. Here, Simon and Ivan, of fame, attempt to chip off pieces of bacon caramel. (The image is blurred to protect Simon's bacon-hating privacy)
Exhibit B: In which my mom and I go to Parliament Hill in Ottawa and at the Changing of the Guards, they play La Marseillaise (among other tunes) and not O Canada!

Exhibit C: In which mom and I go to Montreal,
Obviously this is me in Montreal. Can't you see that everyone around me is speaking French?
eat bagels (with and without cheese),

and see the native Montreal people, who are apparently quite tall during the Just For Laughs Festival.

Part Two coming soon...