Friday, February 03, 2012

NASA “Blue Marble” satellite picture


“Latest 'Blue Marble' image of Africa and the Middle East. Credit: NASA/NOAA

The agency said that it decided to put out a second image of our planet from the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) aboard Suomi because the first - issued last month - was "wildly popular".


Wednesday, February 01, 2012

Are restaurants clean?

Several days ago, the Topeka paper had an article about restaurant inspections.  It turns out, not many Topeka eating establishments are clean.  Or, at least, without any violations.

Some of the violations found in 2011 were more than 300 cockroaches, raw vegetables and food contaminated with raw meat. Moldy food.  Sixty-five percent of the restaurants in Shawnee County had at least one violation.  Oh, and, “only about 35 restaurants — or 5 percent of those inspected — had problems with cockroaches or mice in 2011.”  Thirty-five restaurants sounds like a lot to me.   Some chain restaurants were even cited.

I will concede this, if a restaurant inspector came in unannounced and checked my kitchen, they could probably find something.  I’m sure they are very thorough.  However, there is not cross contamination of raw meat and vegetables.  Nor, would they find cockroaches or mice.  I’m careful about the three hour rule and cooling things down in a timely manner just like everyone else.  It seems to me that someone running a public restaurant would be especially watchful.

I’ve never had food poisoning, that I know of.  Doug got it once after eating in a now closed restaurant.  Not something I want to get. 

After reading this article, I think I will eat where I can see the ingredients and food prepared—sub places, Papa Murphys pizza, Chipotles,  etc. 

Monday, January 30, 2012

This and That

Does anyone wonder what we did before computers/cell phones/tablets?  We wrote letters!   I did get nice handmade thank you notes for Christmas gifts from grandkids.  Loved seeing the envelope addressed to Nana and Papa.

If you have Forever stamps in your drawer, they work for whatever the first class postage is currently.  It will say “forever” somewhere on the stamp.  Most of the stamps anymore are forever stamps. 

Dan tilled my garden today.  After he finished, we sat out on the back deck and drank a beer.  Kim turned on the air conditioning in the clinic today.  Topeka set a high for 70 degrees.  That broke the record of 66 degrees set on this date in 1931.  Just thought I should document the warm conditions here at the end of January.

Long time friends we met the first week we were married were here for dinner on Saturday.  Afterward, we all went on to Manhattan for the KSU/OU basketball game.  Disappointing outcome but great visit!

When will I learn?  Don’t make a new recipe for a covered dish dinner.  However, I warmed the leftovers over for lunch and it was pretty darn good.  What’s that about?

This warm weather is making me have wonderlust.  Is a roadtrip in our future?  Certainly it is tempting to bring the pickup camper out of the barn and head down the road.

I’ve mentioned before that we have a feral cat.  She is actually fairly tame anymore.  Dan can pick her up if he is very careful—not me, though.  I don’t think if an animal is born wild, it can ever be totally tamed.  Laura (cat’s name) “hunts” the birds that are enjoying the sunflower seeds at the bird feeder on the back deck.  These feeders are on top of the railing but she somehow makes a flying leap and gets them.  Dan has taken to throwing a pop can at her.  She then makes a flying leap off the deck.  Still, she likes him better than me.  Probably because he feeds her—not enough, I guess, because she eats those birds after she gets them.

Have a good ‘last day of the month’ tomorrow.  Maybe I’ll get the Christmas header off my blog by February 1st!

Sunday, January 29, 2012


We again were knocked off line of our internet provider most of the weekend.  I guess we should feel fortunate we even have a broadband provider that gives us fairly acceptable speed.  I should check with the company when this happens to see if there is a problem with the tower.  I suspect there is a reason why it happens on the weekends and holidays—too many subscribers for the tower.

It was a very busy weekend.  KSU vs Oklahoma game,  RV show in Kansas City, and dinner and visit from long-time friends, Dwight and Cheryl.  Right now, I can’t keep my eyes open.  More tomorrow.