Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Vise Grips

Local weather patterns and the surreal micro-climate that development brought to this particular property generated a bumper crop of avocado trees on the compost heap. Other tree seedlings have appeared here and there on the lot.

Sometimes I decide to let something grow to see what happens, but when it's time to edit, I hunt up the mechanic's vise grips. They're usually slightly greasy and buried in a kit of road emergency supplies. Vise grips are the tool of choice for extracting a tough-stemmed seedling with deep roots. Wear sticky-palmed work gloves to make the most of your efforts.


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More after the jump.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

True Grits

Cook grits in an automatic rice cooker, leaving the lid off and stirring now and then. Leave the device on warm until the consistency of the grits is to your liking.


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More after the jump.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Notes On Christmas

Menu planning: if it makes me sick and fat, it might not be a treat. The corner deli at Pike Place Market stocks small, individually wrapped confections that round out a course of fresh fruit and a good cup of coffee. Just down the street is an elegant local chocolatier.

Custom: it's easy to plan holidays when the behaviors are repeated year after year.

The calendar: technically, Advent, the four weeks preceding the twenty-fifth, is a miniature Lent, a period of self-denial that makes it easy to prepare for the splurges to come. Winter solstice is a reminder of the wisdom of celebrating light and good living in the face of dark days. Christmas Eve opens a period of celebration that ends on Twelfth Night but continues as Carnival until Ash Wednesday, aka Hangover Day. 


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More after the jump.