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Happy Birthday Cameron!

Dear Cameron – I can’t believe that it’s been 9 years already since you were born. Your parents were sooo happy that you OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAwere coming, and so was I.  When you were born, your eyes were open and you were already looking around and checking out the world, and you  haven’t stopped yet.

I am so happy that I was one of the very first people to ever meet you.  I know you probably don’t remember that we spent a lot of time together before I moved to Portland, but I remember.  We had a lot of fun – especially that time your parents went to a wedding back in Boston and we spend the whole weekend together – what a party!!  Even as a little kid you had lots of attitude 🙂


You are turning out to be cool older kid, too, and I’m looking forward to knowing you your entire life.  Thanks especially to your parents for letting me hang out lots, and even go on special trips with you like to Australia!


Someday I’ll pick you up in a convertible from school again.

I loved it when you all came to visit in Portland, and I hope that is something we can do again.

Love you LOTS, and hope you have a GREAT 9th birthday!

Holdrens fabuloussss cameronsilouette


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Egg Survey .org – Thesis Research on Consumers’ Definition of “Cage-Free”

My thesis research survey was launched last week and the power of networking on the Internet has been fantastic. I plan to keep the survey open until March 1st, and the more folks that take the survey, the more powerful the research will be. If you haven’t yet taken the twenty minutes or so to fill it out, please do, and please pass it around as much as possible.

I’ll post results here later this Spring, as well as on, and I can tell by the answers that I have received up to this point that most folks are going to be surprised, especially by what the terms mean. One of the positive by-products of this research already has been the emails and comments I’ve received by people who have taken the survey and said that just thinking about how to answer the questions has got them wondering more about their eggs and where they come from. Yay!

Happy Chickens at Lovena Farm

Happy Chickens at Lovena Farm

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Take the Egg Survey! All the cool kids are doing it…

Hello all – I’m thigh deep in thesis research now, and could really use your help. It would be great if you and everyone you know would be willing to take a survey for me on consumer motivations for buying “sustainable” and “value-added” eggs. I’m mostly targeting folks who already purchase, at least some of the time, eggs that are cage-free, free-range, omega-3 enriched, local, or otherwise considered more expensive than your average cheap dozen (and I’m guessing that most of you do).

The survey only takes about 20 minutes, and the more folks that take it, the better the research will be. Please pass this along to anyone you know who might fit the consumer profile – I really appreciate it!!

You can find more details and the survey at

Big Thanks, 

Michele Knaus
Masters of Education candidate, Portland State University
Leadership for Ecology, Culture and Learning
“The Consumer and the Egg: Negotiating Eco-labels”

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Tgiving – Two

Duck has been disassembled – stock in process. Shaping rolls, cooking cracklins. To see pictures, follow this link: Read the rest of this entry »

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Food Journal Meal 1, Week 6 (Food, Ethics and Sustainability)

Beet & Spinach Salad

…with local goat cheese to which I added some sauteed sage from my garden. There is some of that wonderful NW Heritage bacon on there and pecans from the bulk bin at New Seasons. No idea where those were grown or how far they were shipped to get to Portland. Read the rest of this entry »

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Food Journal Meal 1, Week 5 (Food, Ethics and Sustainability)

Week 4: Brunch of Bacon and Eggs, Biscuits and Jam

(This is part of my assignment for class, we’ve been documenting two meals per week and detailing where they are created and sustainable topics associated with them – I’m mainly reposting here to include pictures.)

Brunch, Week Four:
Biscuits and Jam, Bacon and Eggs

Bacon and Eggs
Bacon! Really, the only reason that I’m not a vegetarian. Read the rest of this entry »

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Another Repost…Political Chocolate

It’s not that I’m lazy that I’m reposted again, we’ve been out of town 7 of the last 9 days, and the trip home yesterday was brutal. I have several posts in the works (mostly food but it will have to include an airline rant), will get to it asap. In the meantime, please to enjoy:



From the Discovery Channel

March 29, 2006— The Medicis, the family that dominated the Italian Renaissance, used chocolate as a powerful political tool to impose the Florentine taste in European courts, according to an exhibition that traces the history of chocolate from its arrival to Europe in the 16th century.

The exhibition, at the Civic Museum of Monsummano Terme, some 50 kilometers (31 miles) north of Florence, brought to light a 17th century letter which contained the secret jasmine chocolate recipe of Grand Duke Cosimo III, hidden in a footnote.

Double chinned, bovine eyed, chocoholic Cosimo III (1642–1723), was determined to put to an end to Spain’s supremacy in making chocolate.

Indeed, the Spaniards managed to turn the Maya and Aztec’s spiced cocoa drink into a delicate, sweet drink aromatized with vanilla, musk, and amber. Read the rest of this entry »

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