stone barns center for food and agriculture | Nature Times

“This is the first joint Rockefeller State Park Preserve-Stone Barns Center experiment aimed at improving landscape health and ecosystem function.  It is also a potential strategy for increasing access to land for beginning farmers.  Chris O’Blenness is representative of beginning farmers and ranchers who are searching for land to work. This type of symbiotic grazing arrangement on public lands is a potential model for other public lands that can offer beginning farmers affordable opportunities for land access—all while performing a vital public service and delighting Preserve visitors.”

Post and photos by Susan Antenen, Rockefeller State Park Preserve Manager.

Source: stone barns center for food and agriculture | Nature Times

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January in a Nutshell

Arriving home from Paris, where it was in the 40s and 50s, I entered a full wintry mix. Ice, snow, sleet, freezing rain. My lovely host mother drove the normally easy 40 minutes to get me in an hour and a half.  The way home was no faster.

School started up again; it was good to be back. Classes now trust and know me, they raise their hands and talk, respect me when I try to keep them on task, and always say hi to me in the hallways. It is a great feeling to see what an influence, however small, I am having on their learning experience.

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Continue reading “January in a Nutshell”

Schützenverein Fulde: And on Fridays, We Go Shooting

Down the street , past old brick farmhouses, cows, and corn, is the Schützenverein – a sort of “country club” where you can do some pellet gun target practice and play soccer. Claudia and I pass men playing Fußball (foos-ball) and step inside the newish brick one-story building.  Inside, four kids ages 8-18 are working the bar; we order an Alster (half beer half sprite) each and walk across the tiled floor to the large room next door. I was quite surprised to find myself in what resembled a brightly lit church basement; it was not at all what I pictured a “shooting club” to be like. Continue reading “Schützenverein Fulde: And on Fridays, We Go Shooting”

Leaving for Germany One More Time

Boston > Munich > Cologne > Wermelskirchen

Packing didn’t exactly go as planned. In the weeks before leaving, I laid out all my clothes on the apartment floor, determined to pack perfectly this time around: One pile for California, one pile for storage, one pile for Germany. The furniture was gone and I took over the floor, everything was neat and organized. California outfits packed and wore perfectly. But when Saturday came, the final day, we packed the rest of the apartment into our cars and ran out of time. All prospective outfits were shoved in bags and we headed east to deal with clothes later. Continue reading “Leaving for Germany One More Time”

Summer Comes to a Close

On the 29th of August, I ate my last brunch in the peace of the Berkshire Mountains and packed up my entire life to bring it to my parent’s just north of Boston. Yes, it was harder than I thought and yes, it took way longer than I thought, especially considering what I had done the weeks leading up to my move… Continue reading “Summer Comes to a Close”

Breaking Down Our Bilingual Double Standard | GOOD

“Speaking at least two languages is known to improve multitasking and problem-solving skills, lead to greater future job opportunities, reduce once’s risk for dementia in later years, and give children insight into other cultures as they explore different cultural identities within themselves. And when a privileged child enriches her education by adding a second language—known as “additive bilingualism”—it’s generally acknowledged to be a positive, even prestigious, endeavor. But this isn’t the case when it comes to “subtractive bilingualism,” when a new language supplants the language spoken at home.” Read more of the article by Karen Emslie here.

Source: Breaking Down Our Bilingual Double Standard | GOOD.

Texas Barn Finds: Five Pre-War Vehicles and Twice Used Trailer

by Mariah Prescott
HotRodHotline.com – Article published here

May 13, 2015

In the early 70s, Jack moved to Texas from Wisconsin and tucked his small collection of three Cadillacs, an REO, a Milburn, and a Kozy Trailer away in the barn out back. Like many other car guys, he had the intention of someday pulling them out again and restoring them to their glory but also like many of us never found the time or money.

Today, the cars and trailer have been re-discovered (although were not completely forgotten) and are being listed by local Motostalgia Auctions. Owner Jack is still alive and will attend the auction of his five cars on June 12, 2015 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Continue reading “Texas Barn Finds: Five Pre-War Vehicles and Twice Used Trailer”

Language study: Johnson: What is a foreign language worth? | The Economist

“…changes in educational structures can have dynamic effects on entire economies. A list of the richest countries in the world is dominated by open, trade-driven economies. Oil economies aside, the top 10 includes countries where trilingualism is typical, like Luxembourg, Switzerland and Singapore, and small countries like the Scandinavian ones, where English knowledge is excellent.

There are of course many reasons that such countries are rich. But a willingness to learn about export markets, and their languages, is a plausible candidate. One study, led byJames Foreman-Peck of Cardiff Business School, has estimated that lack of foreign-language proficiency in Britain costs the economy £48 billion ($80 billion), or 3.5% of GDP, each year. Even if that number is high, the cost of assuming that foreign customers will learn your language, and never bothering to learn theirs, is certainly a lot greater than zero. So if Mr Saiz had run his language-premium study against a parallel-universe America, in which the last half-century had been a golden age of language-learning, he might have found a bigger foreign-language bonus (and a bigger GDP pie to divide) in that more open and export-oriented fantasy America. And of course greater investment in foreign-language teaching would have other dynamic effects: more and better teachers and materials, plus a cultural premium on multilingualism, means more people will actually master a language, rather than wasting several years never getting past la plume de ma tante, as happens in Britain and America.”

Source: Language study: Johnson: What is a foreign language worth? | The Economist.

Tom Hoover, “Father of the Hemi” Passes Away at 85

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Source: George Mattar for Hemmings

by Mariah Prescott
RacingJunk.com – Article published here

May 5, 2015

Tom Hoover, “Father of the Hemi” passed away on  April 30th at the age of 85 following a long-term illness. Born and raised just west of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, his father was an auto mechanic. After high school, he went on to pursue a degree at Juanita College in his hometown, but it was interrupted by the Korean War. Hoover served 19 months overseas with the National Guard. He returned to Juanita College and completed his bachelor’s degree in physics before completing a master’s from Penn State. In 1955, he started at Chrysler Corporation and received a second Master’s degree from the Chrysler institute in automotive engineering.

Continue reading “Tom Hoover, “Father of the Hemi” Passes Away at 85”

Dairy-Free Chocolate Banana Milkshake

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1 ripe banana, sliced and frozen
1/4 c orange juice
1/4 c water
3/4 c full cream coconut milk
1/2 c dairy- free ice cream (I used SoDelicious Chocolate Coconut Ice Cream)
2 T dairy and grain free hot chocolate mix
1 T chocolate syrup
I also added a scoop of my favorite protein powder just like I do to my daily smoothies.

Combine in blender and whirl until creamy and smooth, serve in a pint glass with a straw.