Friday, April 26, 2019

Golden Angle

I'd rolled up this plastic binding strip months ago not really thinking about what to do with it later.  I took the rubber band off of it a couple days ago just playing with it and noticed the spiral pattern it was making.  I realized it had set in an elliptical shape rather than a circle and after unrolling it formed this pattern. Although not specifically the same as the golden angle, it sure resembles it to a degree.

For those of you who don't know, the golden angle is the smaller of the two angles whose total is a complete circle if the ratio between the two angles was equal to the ratio between the larger angle and the complete circle.

It is most apparent in tightly growing clusters like pine cones and seed or flower heads but also has a role in the growth pattern of leaves as was shown in the picture of my agave plant that I had years ago as posted in the Gardening Forums, said picture was actually an old one from this blog.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Apple Sprout

It's been some time now since I've tried to sprout an apple seed (about 21 years).  The last time I did so, we decided to go camping and left for the weekend. When we came back it had rained and the poor little tree was underwater and dead.

It only had around ten leaves when that happened.  Of course apple trees seem to grown leaves faster than cacao.  The whole tree was no more than six inches tall.

My problem then was that I had put it in a glass bowl with dirt to grow in and left it outside. In southeast Texas it rains so often I should have known better.

This time around well, it's still in a container without drainage but it's inside the office and will probably stay there for a while until it gets big enough to plant in the ground.  At the new place we've moved to there are plenty of places I can plant it, I think.

If I had planted that tree 21 years ago I'm pretty sure it would be producing pretty good by now.

Thursday, April 11, 2019

There Are Herbs In My Chocolate - Cover Reveal

My wife and I are releasing the new expanded and revised version of There Are Herbs In My Chocolate, a cookbook we originally made for supplementing her lectures aboard Royal Caribbean cruises.  Because even the Olympic athlete who was doing performances on stage had a workout video they were selling.

We're happy to have added about 30 recipes and have given it an updated feel.  We have included one of my favorites, a chocolate pear tart with sweet dough crust.  The crust was a recipe handed down from my grandmother and, when I was growing up, was used only for special occasions.  Of course I give ALL the correct ingredient amounts.

The book is available for preorder on any of the sites listed here and it will be coming out on May 7th. We hope you are as excited to try some of the recipes, all tested by us (one recipe didn't make it into the book, it was just bad).

Thursday, April 4, 2019

Cherry Blossom Season (Japan)

Our one trip to Japan was not during the cherry blossom season.  Don't get me wrong, it was a great trip as many of the trees were already getting fall colors.  Although we saw a lot of flowers, like the rose gardens at the Total Recreation Park Rose Garden (バラ園), blooms like these were no where to be seen.

Some of our friends from over there have been taking a lot of pictures and posting them or sending them to us.

At one point I sent a picture of what we get for a short time, the pear blossoms. They were politely impressed but it really doesn't compare in display or longevity.  Maybe some day we'll be able to go see the cherry blossoms in person and really get the full effect of the season because I'm sure the pictures, although wonderful, don't do it justice.

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Apartment Move

So we're moving apartments.  The new place is a little smaller but the kitchen is way better.  And there's still enough room in the living area to play VR.

The outside area and the side study right by it though are the real draw though for growing things.  Sure it looks out to the garages but there is a good bit of sun coming in and it can be open more or less a good bit of the time.

Those days when you have the windows open and the outside shines in are the best.  Seems we're only really getting rid of a desk and  possibly a file cabinet.  The floorplan showed another window on the far right wall of the bedroom but there isn't one.  It also wasn't very well drawn to scale.

Also thinking about getting a small chest freezer.  Back when we got married, one of the first things we got was a large chest freezer and we had it for almost 20 years.  It was great for freezing leftovers and being able to buy bulk items that needed freezing like meat.  And we could make large batches of chili, soup, or such and have it handy for days we didn't feel like cooking.