Friday, November 11, 2016

Turkey cheese whole grain cake

I was at a grocery store recently and they had a turkey for $7.99 if you bought $25.00 worth of stuff, (easy to do on Kauai). But the problem is you end up with a whole turkey and there it is only Kathy and I.

But a year ago I visited a food truck that was some variant of Mongolian food and bought a patty made of a mix of grain, potato, yogurt, and meat and I really liked it. Maybe, I can do something like that with some of the turkey.

1 cup Costco Organic Ancient Grains (Quinoa, Amaranth, Millet), blended into flour
5 large slices dried shitake mushrooms blended into the flour, (I wanted the turkey breast to taste more like red meat)
1/3 cup milled flax
= Now we have our grain component, time to bring in the liquids

1/4  cup  Costco Mediterranean blend oil
2 eggs
6 cooked smallish red potatoes
1 cup cooked turkey breast
1/2 cup Fage Greek Yogurt

= Spices
Salt to taste
Black pepper to taste
Pinch of red pepper flakes
1 tsp cumin
2 tsp mustard, (I used Gulden's spicy brown)

= Now the hard part. I needed enough water for my Blendtech to mix everything, but that equals too much water to build the cake.  My hope was that if I let it sit a while, the grain component would soak up the water and my backup plan was to add mashed potato if needed, (I did need a handful).

I transferred the mixture into a large mixing bowl and stirred in a cup of grated Cost-U-Less 4 cheese mixture to help the cake hold together.

Cooked for 30 minutes at 350, half way through I put a slice of Provolone cheese in the center of the cake, (it is easy to burn Provolone). Let it cool before messing with it.

= Lessons learned
- This is a great use for leftover turkey breast, I try not to brine because I manage my salt, but then if you cook the turkey to 165 degrees, it usually results in dry meat. By grinding it up with all the other ingredients you don't notice it.
- I think egg white will work just as good as whole egg for an even leaner protein source. If I increase the amount of egg white I can reduce the cheese, but then need another spice.
- The bottom burned a bit. This is partly because the lady that cleans our house keeps moving my rack to the bottom. Next time I will check to position of the rack and will cook at 325. By using a pasteurized egg product, since everything is cooked, there would be no food safety issues.
- The Gulden's made the cake slightly bitter, I need to order mustard seed from Spiceworld anyway, that might be a better plan.
- For some reason, (probably because Kathy had a dish of chickpeas in the fridge), I was wondering about incorporating them into a version. Dried as part of the grain component? Whole, for texture interest? Not sure.
- Not as healthy, but what about lamb or duck and ditch the mustard for mint?

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Stephens Pressure Wash and Detail

I love the Pacific Northwest, (Lake Tapps WA), in the summer time. But the mildew on the concrete is a constant battle. It takes me two eight hour days to make a pass on both the front and back of the house. So I went to Craigslist hoping to find a provider. I called Stephens, left a voicemail, Sean Stephens called me back one minute later, came by the next day and provided an estimate and a day later came to do the job and did a much better job than I am capable of with my equipment. (253) 227-2326

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Breakfast Cake, Beef, Mushroom, Grains

I have been playing with pumpkin seed in various ways since I looked at the ingredients for a MoleVerde' in the store and it was the main ingredient. Yesterday, I made blueberry pancakes with equal parts oats, gluten free flour and pumpkin seed flour and it worked pretty good. Can I ditch the gluten free flour as a nod to my Paleo friends.

A day ahead of time:
 Cook 1/3 pound of beef with Winco vegetable soup kneaded in. Refrigerate.

1/3 cup ground Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup of blender ground pumpkin seeds
1/3 cup of blender ground oats
1/3 cup of blender ground dried cremini mushrooms NOTE: Winco sells loose mushrooms with paper bags. After three weeks in the fridge in a paper bag they will be mostly dried. Grind, store in fridge one more week in paper bag. Move to a mylar bag with oxygen eaters.
1 cup of blender ground ground beef and veggies
3 eggs, (if the dough is too stiff add an additional egg)
1 tablespoon baking powder
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
Salt, paprika, black pepper, turmeric to taste

Form dough into two equal balls. Set each ball into a 10' Saute' pan, push down slightly so it is flat on the top. Bake at 350 degrees until solid.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Leavenworth WA

I had often seen a guy, Patrick McCluskey, at Calvary Chapel Lihue wearing a T-shirt from Leavenworth WA, so I finally asked him about it. He explained that the town's sawmill and logging industry fell apart when the Great Northern Railway Company pulled out of Leavenworth. And the town was at the brink of bankruptcy for many years. BUT!

In the early 1960’s, they came up with the idea to change Leavenworth and remodel the town into the form of a Bavarian village. And then added festivals etc. And they became a tourist destination.

Kathy, Yogi and I decided to make it out there during our time in Washington State this summer and we went last weekend. The Obertal hotel is dog friendly, so the three of us headed up there last weekend. It is a 2.5 hour drive mostly in very scenic areas.

Most of the restaurants with outdoor seating are dog friendly. It turned out the weekend we were there was "Wine Walk". We have been on several of these, but never at this scale. It was a great opportunity for "Hound around Town". Yogi did great, even when we turned a corner and were only 20' from a Morgan horse, (though we did duck back around the corner immediately).  However, we parked him across from where they load the carriages and he got so smell and hear horses multiple times.

A great weekend and if you find yourself in the Seattle area, this is one to put on the list.

Monday, September 5, 2016

SANS Rocky Mountain 2017 at the Embassy Suites Denver

SANS Rocky Mountain, June 12, 2017 will be held at the Embassy Suites Denver across from the Downtown Convention Center.  you will find this an ideal destination hotel offering the perfect setting for business or pleasure and a gateway to the city's rejuvenated downtown scene. Steps from the Denver Light Rail System

Some Denver attractions  you can enjoy include:

16th Street Mall / Denver Pavilions / Larimer Square Designed by famed architect I. M. Pei, the pedestrian promenade is made of red, white and gray granite in a repeating pattern that, seen from above, resembles the skin of a diamondback rattlesnake. Free shuttle buses, dubbed the MallRide, travel up and down the 16th Street Mall, stopping on every corner. Hop on and hop off as the shuttles come and go every few minutes and make everything downtown easy to reach.

Sports authority field, (Denver Broncos and special events), schedule.

Coors field, the Rockies 2017 schedule is not finalized yet, hopefully there will be a home game opportunity.
Denver Center for Performing Arts. The two shows that will be performing are The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, (ticket prices not yet established), and DragOn.  

Elitch Gardens Theme Amusement and Water Park, tickets are on sale right now. Located in the heart of Denver for over 125, Elitch Gardens is America’s only Downtown Theme and Water Park.  The park is scheduled to open April 30th.

Red Rocks Amphitheatre, as they fill in the June 2017 schedule it will be available here.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Aloha Oe Diane!

Diane Sardi Final Aloha Oe - (Memorial Service)

The service was held Diane’s office J 1070 Kealoha Rd, Kapaa HI 96746
Date: 8/11/16 4 PM EDT, 1 PM PDT, 10 AM HST
Peter Sardi, (was presented with a lei when he arrived),  Keely Williams, Kimie Cabrera, Stephanie Aurthur, Shireen and Roxanne.

Remote via GotoMeeting as they listed their names:
Kimie Cabrera
Betsy Marchant
Jeff Lesch
Eric Patterson
Sydney Davis
Shelley Moore
William Lockhart
Toby Gouker
Suzy Northcutt
Sara Schleisman
Deanna Boyden
Stephen & Kathy Northcutt


Opening  music: Elton John Tribute to Princess Diana

Peter requested we play Imagine by John Lennon. Peter shared this was his favorite song.

Reading of the memorial statements.

Memorial statements from the students are perhaps the most important. There were more than this, but we present a sample of what STI received from the students that worked with Diane:

My condolence to Diane and her family, truly a disappointment that she no longer here with us, she was very supportive and always there when I needed assistance. I never meet her in person, but I am saddened.

I am so very saddened by this unexpected loss. Beyond her phenomenal performance as part of the SANS family, she was very friendly and fun communicate with. She will certainly be missed. Please send her family my most sincere condolences.

 I am sorry for your loss.  I never met her face-to-face, but she was a huge help over the past few years.  She will be missed!  

I am very saddened to learn of the passing of Diane.  She was a wonderful person and always very cheerful and most helpful to students.  My deepest sympathy to her family and the SANS family.

This is devastating news.  I was finally able to meet Diane in person and thank her for all her generous help at SANS San Diego. Extremely thankful I had that opportunity.  My deepest condolences to everyone at STI, SANS, and most of all her family. 

Diane was a wonderful helpful person and will surely be missed.  I really wish I had a chance to meet her in real life.  Please extend my condolences to her family and friends. May she rest in peace.

Diane was fantastic to work with from the time I entered the STI program and she was always patient and more than willing to help. She will be missed tremendously by myself and many, many others. Please extend my condolences to her family and loved ones.

Memorial statement from an STI representative where Diane worked:
"Diane was instrumental in managing what she referred to fondly as our ‘snowflakes’ - each student and each course enrollment a little different than the last. We had many a brainstorming session working through one complicated registration after the next, a sometimes tedious process made bearable by her company.  

Diane was such a source of support to me when I joined SANS and had been ever since. Diane was the original ‘phone list.’ She knew how things worked at SANS and who to contact. In the days and weeks since her passing, I’ve still found myself thinking, ‘I need to ask Diane about that.’

I often talked about visiting the 'Hawaii office'. I’ve yet to make the trip, but you can be sure that I will think of her when I do."

Memorial statements from the staff of SANS, GIAC, some of these friendships and business relationships go back ten years.

Jeff Frisk:
Diane was such a steadying and stable force.  She always had a great point of view and played an important role in supporting my work with SANS, GIAC and STI for so many years.  We often had complicated policy decisions, reworking documentation for GIAC’s ANSI efforts and STI’s accreditation, Diane really brought a great perspective and human element into otherwise tedious work.  Before we had a more formal HR department, Diane did such a great job with HR related activities for the Kauai office.  As we all know, a lot of the HR facets in a smaller organization can be complicated, Diane was always available to help me through things both with employees and GIAC candidates, STI students, etc.  And, she always greeted me with a big smile / hug and that means a lot.

Deb Jorgensen:
I am deeply saddened by this news. 
Diane was one of the kindest, most gentle, calmest person I know. Her voice and demeanor was all it took for you to be relaxed.  She had the unique ability to take a "situation" and soothe people, so they could think rationally. She was an old soul, that I recognized and connected with.
At one point, in the early years when you were building SANS, we would have our weekly call and she would say..."Breathe, Deb, breathe. Take a breath." I was either excited about something or nervous about what we were doing to build the company and I've never forgotten that advice she gave..."take a breath, slow down, it will be fine and we can work it out." (We were still less than 50 employees at the time.)  That is the memory that sticks in my mind the most.
Remembering how you built the would hire people as your admin, assess their skills, then move them into the department you thought was the best fit. After Diane came on board a couple of years after you moved me into a different department, I asked her what department she was going to move into (based on your previous practice) and she said, "Why would I go anywhere else? This is what I want to do and it suits me perfectly!" Diane was a very special person to me.

Suzy Northcutt:
I didn’t know Diane as well as many of you. I didn’t live on Kauai, and I didn’t interact regularly with her from a roles perspective.
But I think Deb absolutely nailed her spirit and the essence of her gift of effortlessly calming the chaos around her.

In fact, I don’t know that there would be a SANS today were it not for Diane. Seriously. Many had tried and failed to ‘assist the executive(s)’ and then along came Diane. She just fit right in and started picking up pieces and putting the whole mess back together again. While Stephen and Kathy divided their lives between 32,000 feet and ’72 and fluorescent’, she was the anchor back at the home camp that took care of all the details: from policy management for an infant organization to looking after a couple of senior citizen Northcutts; from uber travel  agent to plant waterer; from courseware development to blog manager to startup graduate school wrangler.

A favorite memory is a time when I was visiting. You and Kathy took me to a concert of a member of one of my earlier favorite bands whom I will not name because his concert was so awful. You invited Diane and Peter to  go with us. Diane was so touched to be invited, considered as a ‘friend’ and not just an employee. The singer was terrible. We laughed so hard in the parking lot when we finally moseyed out of the venue incredulous at how off key he was. Diane just smiled and pointed out, “Maybe he had an ear infection.”

Diane wore many, many hats. But beneath those hats was that calm sweet smile that Deb shared. Just a little grin. Just a little twinkle.

She is and will be deeply missed. And I know that for those of you who were closer to her and knew her better, your hearts are stricken.
But you know she would have said, “Breathe Kathy. It will be okay Deb. Hang in there Stephen, Katherine, Stephanie, Jeff…. ”

Stephen Northcutt:
Chris, a young pastor of Calvary Chapel Fredericksburg VA once gave me a bit of advice that seemed to work, so I pass it on to you. “If you ever need an executive assistant make sure to hire someone considerably older than you. That way, they will be mature and handle things well when issues come up and people are less likely to have a salacious view of the working relationship.

Diane was my executive assistant for over five years and she was amazingly skilled at juggling the competing interests in a growing enterprise known as SANS, GIAC, and STI.

She was someone that I trusted completely. I realize in a cybersecurity focused company some of you are going to cringe, but she had access to my email. After all, when I was teaching or traveling, someone had to keep an eye on things.

Most importantly she was my friend, especially when I stepped down from leadership and she did not work for me. Peter and Diane went to a concert with Kathy and I. We attended social events together. They came to the Valentines couple dance that Kathy and I host. We even flew ultralights together.

And that is the memorial story I would like to share. I was crewing on a sailboat and one of the guests turned out to be an ultralight pilot with a company that catered to tourists, but the program is designed to help you earn your license. I tried it, it was a lot of fun, (well except when you hit unexpected turbulence). I asked Diane if you would like to fly and she said yes. The day we went up was one of those really rare crystal clear days with as much visibility as possible. They were flying two planes that day, I was with one instructor pilot, Diane with another. The runway at Salt Pond is wide enough that you can both take off at the same time. After the takeoff, the instructor gave me control of the craft. I looked over Diane’s hands were not on the controls, she had no interest in a flying lesson. She was just laid back watching the island below as calm as could be while I was totally amped up.

Stephanie and Peter both shared. Peter told the story of Diane making the aloha shirt he was wearing.

End of the memorial statements.

We played the song Amazing Grace. There are many versions of this song. Diane loved  music and could usually name the song and artist in the first few notes. When Stephen was present in this office he and Diane had a Pau Hana tradition for Friday afternoons of playing music. Sometimes they would queue up different covers of the same song.

Diane loved the harmony Celtic Woman are famous for.

We honored Diane’s well lived life with a minute of silence.

Many a visitor to the office remarked on Diane’s “cat pillow”. Peter, we thanked you for the loan of it and presented it back.

Those on Kauai stood and faced the East, (beach), to symbolize Diane leaving Hawaii.

There is a tradition in Hawaii of a final Aloha Oe, or farewell to thee, 

Played song Aloha Oe

Then the memorial service ended, all present enjoyed pupus.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Tracy Arm Fijord

Thursday, July 28, 2016, we stayed on the boat today and went up Tracy Arm Fijord. I have never seen anything as untouched, unspoiled, pure magnificence in my life.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Skagway and the train to Canada

Wednesday, July 27, 2016 we went to Skagway. There were monster cruise ships in port, so we elected not to visit the town. That afternoon we took the train to Canada. If you do the summit railway tour be sure to sit on the left hand side of the train going up or the right side going down. I managed to get a few photos from the right side, but all the scenic opportunities were on the left.

We switched to a small bus going down. Great tour guide/driver. We stopped at a large waterfall.

At one point he pulled over for a Welcome to Alaska sign. Kathy and I were the only ones that got out for a picture.

 It felt like the trip back was only five minutes, though in reality it was closer to an hour.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Haines and the Bald Eagle Foundation

One the way to Haines, we worked out using the boats "gym".

Tuesday, July 26, 2016 we boarded a bus for the Valley of the Eagles tour. We saw several nesting eagles using spotting scopes.

The drive back to Haines was scenic.

We didn't see bears, but apparently they really are there.

The highlight was back in Haines where we spent an hour and the Bald Eagle Foundation. I had never seen an eagle walk before and they sort of waddle.

They also have a nature discussion at the Foundation. Some of the stuffed animals are fairly lifelike.

That afternoon Kathy and I visited the town library voted best small town library in America in 2006 and again in 2014.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Glacier Bay to Haines

Monday, July 25, 2016, after breakfast I finished another of my stories for the “American Character” SANS Rocky Mountain 2017 marketing campaign. It is about Jacob Lawrence. If you have never heard of him, it is worth Googling.  Speaking of which, I am starting to “pine” for connectivity.  We pulled into the ranger station at Bartlett Cove and it was a lovely day so Kathy and I did a self guided tour to look at the forest. We were struck by the flowers. 

Then we went through the swamp on a raised path. Evidence of rainfall was everywhere.

We got to the lodge and picked up a Glacier Bay t-shirt for each of us. Then I noticed a deepwater sailor staring intently at his iPad. I wonder? Sure enough there was wireless. I used my phone to get rid of the junk in my inbox and then answer messages. Only one student assignment had come in, he had made the requested improvements in his presentation so I sent it to Alan.

We headed back to the boat via yet another trail and saw a whale skeleton and wooden canoe.

 As soon as I got back to the boat I grabbed my laptop to see if I could get the park service wireless from the boat; no joy. So I grabbed it and headed for the ranger station to synch my laptop inbox with all the work I had done with my phone. Got that done and came back to the boat. After lunch we set sail to Haines, we will be there in the morning. Right after we left there was an odd pattern in the water. Fish were quite interested in the area as were a couple seals, so it must have to do with food.