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Thursday, April 21, 2011

EggFest 2011

Actually, the original name was Eggstravaganza, but I forgot. 

Monday, October 18, 2010

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Things to Do Outside With The Family (for a Non-Outside-y Type of Mom)

Thank goodness our neighborhood pool opened up!  It is already so hot here for this time of year...

Before it gets to the point of running from one air-conditioned place to the next this summer, I wanted to write about a cool place to take your kids that is kinda enjoyable for moms, too!

Check out the Columbia Canal Riverwalk.  Because I love history, this is a great place to walk around and explore...Take a picnic and eat it on a big rock in the middle of the river!   IMG_3437

Back in the olden days, everything was pretty much based around the water... before mass transportation, the river was the only way to move supplies and products to and from villages. IMG_3433   In South Carolina, we have a bunch of rivers and canals!  The state used the labor of Irish immigrants in 1824 to build a series of canals to connect settlements in upstate South Carolina with the Midlands.

From Wikipedia:
"In 1820, construction started on a canal to navigate the rapids where the Broad River and the Saluda River form the Congaree River. It used a natural ravine that was between the City of Columbia and the Congaree and Broad Rivers. The canal started between Lumber (currently Calhoun) and Richland Streets. It ran along the Congaree for about 3.1 mi (5 km). It ended across from Granby Landing just north of the current railroad bridges across the Congaree. The canal was completed in 1824. It was 12 ft (3.7 m) wide and 2.5 ft (0.8 m) deep north of Senate St. South of Senate St., the canal was 18 ft (5.5 m) wide and 4 ft (1.2 m) deep. It had an 8 ft (2.4 m) wide towpath on either side. The canal had four lifting locks and one guard lock for the 34 ft (10 m) descent of the river. A diversion dam was built across the Broad River to allow access from the Saluda Canal. There were three waste weirs to prevent flooding of the canal.IMG_3443
A separate canal, which was called Bull Sluice, was constructed north of Columbia Canal on the Broad River, This ½ mi (0.8 km) long canal had one lock. The 1891 canal extended the Columbia Canal upstream of Bull Sluice.
In 1840, the State of South Carolina dropped its subsidy of the canal. In 1842, the railroads came to Columbia and the traffic on the canal decreased. During the Civil War, the hydraulic power of the canal was used to make gunpowder. Mills that used the canal for power were a grist mill run by the State Penitentiary, another grist mill, and a saw mill.
IMG_3447 IMG_3448
Portions of the 1824 canal south of Gervais St. survive today. Also parts of the Bull Sluice canal remain."

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Happy Cinco de Mayo & How Much I Love Cilantro

Happy Cinco De Mayo! The holiday celebrating Mexico’s victory over France in the 1800s is celebrated in the United States by great food and drink!

This day also gives me an opportunity to write about my love of cilantro!  Once you have salsa with fresh cilantro, you won't like it any other way! 

"Pronounced [sih-LAHN-troh] this member of the carrot family is also referred to as Chinese Parsley and Coriander. It is actually the leaves (and stems) of the Coriander plant.
Cilantro has a very pungent odor and is widely used in Mexican, Caribbean and Asian cooking. The Cilantro leaves look a bit like flat Italian parsley and in fact are related.

Coriander grows wild in South East Europe and had been cultivated in Egypt, India and China for thousands of years. It is mentioned in Sanskrit text and the Bible Spanish conquistadors introduced it to Mexico and Peru where it now commonly paired with chilies in the local cuisine. It has since become very popular in the Southwest and Western part of the United States as well as in most metropolitan areas. An interesting note is that people of European descent frequently are reviled by the smell of cilantro. It has not gained in popularity in Europe as it has in many other parts of the world.

Coriander is believed to be named after "koris", the Greek word for "bedbug" as it was said they both emitted a similar odor. The Chinese used the herb in love potions believing it provided immortality. Coriander is one of the herbs thought to have aphrodisiac qualities. The book of The Arabian nights tells a tale of a merchant who had been childless for 40 years and but was cured by a concoction that included coriander. That book is over 1000 years old so the history of coriander as an aphrodisiac dates back far into history. Cilantro was also know to be used as an "appetite" stimulant."

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Confessions Of A Mom Geek

There was a time when my geekiness was not very stylish at all!  I was the one with the encyclopedia sized day-planner stuffed into my purse back in the late 80's.  After my first baby, I took my geekiness to a whole new level!  Enter the Palm Pilot!  I remember typing all of my recipes into it and pulling it out at the grocery store while other shoppers gave me curious looks.  Soon, I was dealing with a large, clunky cell phone and a Palm Pilot.... truly a female Inspector Gadget!

Between my sister and me, we have purchased and tested so many cell-phones that I have lost count. The phone that I have today and love is the Palm-Pre.  I started with carrying Palm Pilots and it looks like I have come full-circle.  Windows Mobile based phones are just not for me.  In my opinion, they are not very intuitive at all.  The Palm-Pre is beautiful in it's simplicity. 

Palm, Inc. as a company....what's up with that?  It seems this organization is always struggling.  Today's news is that Palm is up for grabs to any corporation who will have it! Please, I'm a Palm Fan!  Let's keep this wonderful phone from disappearing. 

More blogging to come regarding this great device!