Thursday, December 25, 2008

Monday, December 22, 2008

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Ice storm in Central Massachusetts

It was midnight of Dec. 12 when we heard the loud noise from branches and trees breaking and falling. Power was off. About once a minute there'd be a loud BANG followed by a rustling sound and finally a crash as a branch or tree broke, fell through other branches and landed on the ground. It was eerily quiet between the BANGs. It was continous loud sound that made us awake the whole night. DH go out to investigate, and start a fire in the wood stove, knowing from experience that the power would not come back quickly. He investigate headlights stopped in the road.
People were stopped because of a large birch blocking the road, all was OK, sort of. They had a friend with a chainsaw coming.

In the morning, ice covered everything. No power, of course. The birch in the road was cleared, but another tree mostly blocked the road, but people could drive around it on the shoulder. DH decide to cut it enough to clear the road and get the chainsaw. The saw brought out two neighbors and they all worked to remove the tree.
Lots of large branches down in the yard.

I kept on visiting my littlegirl's bedroom because of the sound and the branches that fell off the ground made me worry so much. Our house was surrounded with trees, luckily no trees near our house fell down except the big branches close to the garage and the barn. The storm left us 8 days without electricity. Damage was severe in the city and some parts of Fitchburg still dont have power. We are lucky enough to have the firewood stocked up last summer. I am glad DH went crazy this summer cutting firewood, although the reason he did so was that he expected heating oil to cost $4-5/gallon this winter.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Bouncing Bananas!

Did you know the banana plant is not a tree? It's actually the world's largest herb! There are two types of bananas: the fruit or sweet banana and the plantain. The fruit banana is the one we are most familiar with. We eat it when it turns yellow and develops a sweet taste with the soft texture. The plantain is a cooking banana that contains less water and thus tends to have a dryer texture.
Banana seem to change from green to yellow to black almost overnight. This change in color represents the ripening process of bananas. Unfortunately, many kids don't care for bananas once they get those dark spots. Once the banana has turned yellow, you can slow down the ripening process by placing them in the refrigerator. The skin will turn black, but inside the banana is still fine for up to about two weeks. Another option to save those browning bananas is to peel them, cut them into chunks, and then wrap them in plastic. Tuck them into the freezer and use as needed for smoothies, or defrost and masah for baking. I usually wait until banana is overripe so I can make a delicious banana bread which is my DD's favorite. When baking, you can substitute an equal amount of pureed banana for the same amount of oil in the recipe. For example, if brownie recipes call for 1/2 cup of vegetable oil, try a 1/2 cup of pureed banana instead. You'll save 120 grams of fat or 1,080 calories in the recipe.

Computer Problem...

For the past few days I can't do anything with my computer, it makes me nervous 'coz I have new files and pictures that are not save yet. I didn't do anything with my PC until my DH got home last night to fix the problem and had him back-up all the files. He did it but now it takes forever to load and dropping EC takes time. Anyways, to my co-bloggers who visit my site I will reciprocate as much as I can.

ss_blog_claim=11dbf46afee43cadfb622991c31ea766 ss_blog_claim=11dbf46afee43cadfb622991c31ea766