Monday, 20 October 2008

Apples, apples and errr yet more apples

Tuesday apple cake
Wednesday apple cake
Thursday out for tea but more apple cake 
Friday Broth with yes you have guessed it some apple puree. It was really nice and consisted of onions, beetroot (beets), kohlrabi, ginger, potatoes and a tub of mushroom cream cheese as well as the apple puree.
Saturday - Sausage and mash and gravy with some of our frozen courgettes (zucchini) and a little apple puree of course
Sunday - Pork roasted with cabbage, leeks, a few beetroot (beet) leaves, and yes apples, plus roasted potatoes and roasted swede (rutabaga) and we were still finishing off the apple cake or at least Ian was and then I made some scones - apple scones of course. Mind you I forgot to add the sugar but they still taste nice, especially with some jam.
(Photo from just outside our flat - a cheerful site, for me that is for Ian it just reminds him winter is on its way)

It has been another torrid week of rumours and rumours of rumours sending our poor jittery dealers in stocks into a panic. If it wasn't having such a drastic effect on people who don't deal in stocks and on pensions it would be funny. It has lead to some thoughtful comments though such as :-
"If the global economy can, almost overnight, find two trillion dollars to cut the risk of Freddie Mae and Bertie Mac and the global banking community from going down the pan, surely it can find a fraction of that to cut the risk of forests going up in smoke." Andrew Mitchell

I would add that if the global economy can find two trillion dollars to cut risk then maybe they could find a few billion to eradicate some diseases that are the scourge of the poor or maybe provide everyone with safe drinking water and I am sure everyone could add a few thoughts of their own.

In one of my internet trawls I also found the following comments which I found interesting from Communication for Social Change which outlines the direction in which they would like to
see communications evolve including the following points:

• Away from people as the objects for change … and on to people and
communities as the agents of their own change
• Away from designing, testing and delivering messages…and on to supporting
dialogue and debate on the key issues of concern
• Away from the conveying of information from technical experts… and on to
sensitively placing that information into the dialogue and debate
• Away from a focus on individual behaviors…and on to social norms, policies,
culture and a supportive environment

Interesting thoughts to stimulate some debates. Can you imagine what it would look like if we stopped thinking we had to make things happen to people so they can change to enabling them to change, giving them the voice to help the change happen that they want instead of something imposed upon them. 

Wednesday - we have heat yeeeaaaaaaaaah!!!!!!!!!!! Can you feel the excitement. Don't take your heat for granted! I guess at the moment don't take anything for granted except that there is a God in Heaven who cares for each and everyone of us and even if the road gets rocky he still loves us. He is bringing about a remarkable redemptive correction to the markets, when they seemed so safe in their ivory towers, uncaring for the effects they were having on the world and it's inhabitants they have been shown that it is not they who are in power. I pray for some remarkable turn arounds in their personal lives too, may they through their vulnerability at the moment find the God who cares. (If you look carefully at this picture you will be able to see some smoke coming from the top of the building, this sometimes indicates that we will be getting some heat, unfortunately this morning it did not materialise)

Well Wednesdays heat lasted for two hours but Thurdsay it came on in the morning and lasted most of the day and went off around 4pm - peculiar way of doing it and doesn't really fit in around people going out to work but does fit in around work hours for those firing up the boilers. Friday we had heat until 5pm and this was beginning to feel really good and then we had nothing over the weekend. It has made me think more about poverty though and the sheer powerlessness of it. We do not have any say in when the heating is put on, this must be partly a language thing but I am not sure whether having the language to question the decisions will make any difference whatsoever. Latvians don't like to argue or to make a fuss and can often just accept things the way but the result is damp and cold houses which cannot have a good effect on the health of the population or the ability of children to think. I have to do some work prior to the start of my course to bring me up to speed after too many years away from written assignments - well my own anyway and certainly at this level, to get warm enough to make my brain function I had to sit at the desk with a hot water bottle on my lap and a quilt wrapped around my legs and plenty of layers of clothing on, it seems almost prehistoric and not something I am really used to in my lifetime. I do remember times without central heating but not times without the choice of heating my room effectively. Good news is though that I am at least finding the work interesting and stimulating which is encouraging.

We reap what we sow but sometimes in unexpected ways. Two of Ian's ex-work colleagues made contact with him this week unexpectedly but all as a result of action taken by Ian a little while ago.  The Perdue website is a site for those who are interested in flow cytometry and Ian keeps his eye on this when he noticed an old acquaintance of his, he emailed him to see how he was doing. In the email he asked if he knew what had happened to an old work colleague who Ian had lost contact with and was given a bit of information. A while later this old acquaintance actually met Ian's ex-work colleague on a bus of all places and next thing we know the ex-work colleagues has sent an email making contact. Ian was really pleased to reestablish contact as he was a little worried what had happened to him, as the last he had heard was he was off long term sick and had then left the company they had both worked for. Another contact was reestablished after Ian noticed that another ex-work colleague was on a list of people who were involved in a patent and it stated he was in Denmark, no address but a bit of a surprise as the last we knew was he was in Fort Collins. Ian sent a message to HR asking if his ex-work colleague had indeed returned to his native Denmark, this message was passed on and lo and behold the ex-work colleague got in touch. He had lost Ian's details in the move back to Denmark. I am really pleased that these bridges have been reestablished as I felt they were both important, not sure how but time will show that.

Friday morning I noticed on the calendar for Northstar UK, where I monitor messages posted by students online, that I was supposed to be in Brazil in about a weeks time, it threw me for a minute until I realised that I was in Brazil around this time last year and I must have accidentally made the entry a yearly event. Shame really I would have loved to have gone back again this year but so far I haven't had the chance yet. 


  1. ha ha so all those assignments of mine that you have proof read is now paying off. Don't expect the favour to be returned. ASK DAD!

  2. So happy for heat and hope it comes more consistently. Glad you are enjoying the fruits of the harvest, hehehe. We will gladly share them with you next year as well.
    As for the economics God's economy is strong and as a citzen of heaven that is very calming.

  3. I hope that proof reading pays off anyway. I guess I will be asking your Dad but I thought you would have had a go too you know, like returning the favour!

    Yes Kathleen I agree that the economics in the Kingdom are certainly strong even if there are times we have to make do with less as well as some of the years of abundance.


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