Now Is the Cool of the Day

We may be able to look back on 2019 as the year when the most people realized just how stupid it is to destroy our own planet and started changing their own habits and crying out for systemic change. I certainly hope so.  It's about time!  In fact, it may be just about the last … Continue reading Now Is the Cool of the Day

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Party Without Plastic! How to serve less trashy refreshments

This year I've been helping with a local challenge to reduce single-use plastics.  My church hosted a screening of Plastic Paradise, a documentary I highly recommend for learning more about where plastic stuff goes when we throw it "away."  Of course we wanted to serve some snacks to welcome people to our parish hall and … Continue reading Party Without Plastic! How to serve less trashy refreshments

Palak Paneer

This is a simple homemade version of the delicious "creamed spinach with cheese" dish popular in Indian restaurants.  We've tweaked the recipe enough that it's become our own, and meanwhile the recipe we started from is no longer online. Paneer is a firm, white cheese you can buy at an Indian grocery store--it's the best … Continue reading Palak Paneer

Help Save Pittsburgh from Instant Garbage!

Here are some upcoming events in our Challenge to reduce single-use plastic products in Pittsburgh: Tuesday, March 5, Allegheny County Council will consider a resolution on plastic reduction, 5:00pm at the City-County Building. Saturday, March 9, a "No Plastic, Please" Awareness Blitz will train volunteers to visit (the same day) restaurants in Squirrel Hill to … Continue reading Help Save Pittsburgh from Instant Garbage!

Go Green in 2019: Cut Back on Single-Use Plastic!

Here in Pittsburgh, we're having a challenge to reduce consumption of single-use plastic (SUP) products.  If you live somewhere else, launch a challenge in your area!  Even if you make it just your personal challenge to use fewer SUPs yourself and to ask the stores and restaurants you visit to stop pushing so many SUPs on … Continue reading Go Green in 2019: Cut Back on Single-Use Plastic!

Wild Sheep, Wingmen, and Dueling Detectives [book reviews]

I recently read two novels translated into English, a book written in English that attempts to translate "boy world" into ideas parents can understand, and an English mystery with some parallels to the Swedish mystery I'd just read. A Wild Sheep Chase by Haruki Murakami, translated from Japanese by Alfred Birnbaum A young man finds … Continue reading Wild Sheep, Wingmen, and Dueling Detectives [book reviews]

Magic Breakfast Burrito + 70 Things to Cook in Cast Iron

We've had two cast iron skillets in our home for years, and we use at least one of them almost every day.  This year, we inherited three more!  That's what inspired me to collect a whole bunch of recipes for foods that cook well in cast iron. My friend Alison Frane (of Chickicheesinara Sauce fame) offered … Continue reading Magic Breakfast Burrito + 70 Things to Cook in Cast Iron

A Certified Wildlife Habitat in an Urban Churchyard

"Wildlife" sounds like something that lives out in the wild, right?  We picture wildlife in the jungle, in the desert, or at least deep enough into the forest that it can't hear motors. But wild animals live in almost every acre of Earth's surface.  Squirrels are wildlife.  Ladybugs, ants, and even pigeons are wildlife.  Leopards … Continue reading A Certified Wildlife Habitat in an Urban Churchyard

Tomatillo Salsa and 3 Flavors of Roasted Tomatoes

It's been a great summer for tomatoes here in western Pennsylvania!  Our CSA farm share brought us 27 tomatoes and 18 tomatillos last week, and 38 tomatoes two weeks ago.  We expect to get more tomatoes today! We learned several years ago that roasting in seasoned oil makes tomatoes taste great, take up less space, … Continue reading Tomatillo Salsa and 3 Flavors of Roasted Tomatoes