Sunday, April 19, 2015

Sunday Randomness #123: Trying some exotic new fruit

Wrinkly exotic fruit. Oval purple passion fruit on the left, oblong star shaped starfruit on the right.And this is how they appear when you cut them up.  The starfruit have hard seeds in the middle like an apple that we did not eat. We thought it had a slight pear taste and was crunchy like an apple.  The passion fruit has a unique taste all its own-slightly like perfume with a tangy bite.  You eat the seeds and that yellow pulp around the seeds and the juice is delicious.  The seeds are crunchy and great as a topping.  Surprisingly, passion fruit seeds are high in dietary fiber and they also have a fairly med-high phosphorus content.  And yes, this is what a ripe passion fruit should look like-wrinkled outer skin with the pulp and seeds coming away from the bitter rind on the inside.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Author #132: Shona Innes and the playground of friendship

Ahhhh....the ups and downs of friendship are covered in this cute little book called Friendship is Like a Seesaw by Shona Innes and illustrated by Irisz Agoces.  Read about more of their Big Hug Books at:   Ms. Innes uses insights gained through her experiences as a clinical and forensic psychologist to share thoughts and ideas about a range of subjects that can be emotionally challenging for kids, teens and adults.

Thursday, April 09, 2015

Author # 131: ADHD and Asperger Syndrome with dogs and cats by Kathy Hoopmann

Develop more understanding with Kathy Hoopmann and her books: All Dogs Have ADHD  and All Cats Have Asperger Syndrome.  Ms. Hoopmann was born and lived for many years in Australia but has also lived in Dubai.  For more about Kathy and her other books, please visit her website at:

I want to share her blurb from her website on her presentation on Asperger Syndrome in the classroom:

" It is estimated that 1 in every 80 children have Asperger Syndrome. Every teacher will have a child with Asperger’s in their classroom at some stage, whether the child is diagnosed, or not. My talk does not focus on what is Asperger Syndrome, (although, of course, I do explain it) but rather I present an insight to the mind of the child with Asperger’s, to show how they think and why they do the things they do. For many teachers, this is eye opening and will change the way they deal with children with Asperger's to the benefit of all concerned. "

These two picture books cover many similarities between the behavior of familiar animals with some behaviors of those who may fall on the ADHD and/or Asperger Syndrome spectrum.   Examples include that the mind of an ADHD child may work better when their body is moving-sitting still is not their thing and an asperger child may just say what is on their mind without thinking about what they are saying-they are honest but sometimes too honest.  We really appreciated the insight given by her books and they have helped us to have greater patience and understanding with all those with whom we interact.

Thursday, April 02, 2015

Author #130: Jennifer Adams reimagines Poe's Raven poem

What happened when The Raven from Edgar Allan Poe's narrative poem was a little fledgling?  Get a little glimpse through Jennifer Adams book, Edgar Gets Ready For Bed. The book has some wonderfully simplistic illustrations by Ron Stucki.  Read more about Jennifer Adams and her take on literary classics for children at:
She also has a number of board books that make the classics accessible to the very young and young at heart ranging from Jane Eyre to Frankenstein to Jabberwocky plus many more!

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Sunday Randomness #28: Four way bathroom flooring swap in less than four months

This it the first flooring for the downstairs bathroom-a thick ivory shag carpet with pink accent rugs.  All three bathrooms had carpet but propitiously, none of the carpet in the bathrooms was glued down and there was no pad to deal with in any of the bathrooms. We were able to just lift out the carpet pieces and throw them away.

Here's what we found under the carpet downstairs:

Tiger striped linoleum.  Really. I should have gotten pictures/video of everyone's faces and the shocked laughter when they first saw this flooring.  Including contractors.  All of whom took a picture themselves.  None of the three flooring contractors had ever seen anything like it before.
Finally, when we had some different work done, a workman said he had seen flooring of the same era once in a millionaire home up in Park City. He said that individual had animal prints for flooring and large taxidermy stuffed animals all over the home.  When we asked the previous owners of our house about this floor they laughed and said we should have seen it when they moved in.  Supposedly the owners before them had animal print flooring and animal print pictures in nearly every room.  If only we had pictures....

 Initially we went with a remnant vinyl flooring but there were problems such as under the bathroom sink as shown below.  Plus the flooring didn't get rolled out right so we had bubbles on the edges where this new flooring started to come up.

 So here we go with the final floor that's currently in the bathroom downstairs.  Just a simple stone design but it goes so much better with the new laminate wood flooring that we have in the other room.  Plus we were able to do some repair work that was missed the first time around such as new baseboard under the sink and touch up painting.
Yes, the tile work on the shower is interesting isn't it?  Wait 'til you see the inside.  But that's going to have to wait for a future post.  Meanwhile you can get a small glimpse of the hallway and downstairs living room flooring that was an early 1960's flat carpet in the second picture down and a brief glimpse of the laminate flooring that replaced it in the fourth picture down.     Despite all the work we love the new house and slowly we'll get things upgraded and updated.  This bathroom just gives a small glimpse of what we've been doing.