Posts Tagged ‘BBQ’

Change the World Wednesday – 10 Sep

goiababranca

White guava

Here we go again. I woke this morning to find two big goiaba branca just waiting to be plucked.

And plucked they were, then eaten for breakfast.

Delicious they were.

And all this before coffee…

I surprise myself sometimes.

I am pleased to report that the coffee situation has been rectified. Coffee is not merely a beverage, it is a cup of liquid sanity.

Last week I extended my foray to the dumping ground and dragged home another lovely piece of wood.

Grotty yard table

Grotty yard table standing to the side

My orignial yard table was a grotty old thing.

It is now the wind break for my latest addition.

My yard now sports a respectable table

My yard now sports a respectable table – the lighting was terrible for the photo this morning.

My new BBQ corner, still supported by one of the grotty old stoves that I replaced. But it’s a great place to store charcoal.

By collecting other people’s throw-outs, my lot improves; little by little.

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Remember my celery butt? Now planted in a pot of its own and thriving.

My celery butt

Okay, it’s time for this week’s CTWW.

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The week we are looking at spreading the good word. Bringing other people into the ‘green’ fold.

All of the green-living activities which we, as Eco-conscious people, adopt help control climate change. But we need more people to climb on board. So, this week, encourage others to take action against climate change. Need some ideas? Write a post about the situation and ask your readers to take on an Eco-friendly activity. Open a conversation with friends and family. Write to officials with your concerns and suggest actions which they can take. The idea, this week, is to get other people thinking about climate change and acting against this threat.

 

Various shades of green

Various shades of green

A great idea. But just a post here, is preaching to the converted. Let’s face it, most of the people are here becasue they are already various shades of green.

So I propose to add an intro on some of my other blogs inviting readers to come and look at this CTWW. It doesn’t sound like a great deal, but some of my blogs have 1,000+ followers, if I can generate the slightest impetus for a few of them to come and at least look at CTWW, then I win.

I agree with the sentiment of writing to officials. But sometimes I feel that we are banging our heads against the proverbial brick wall.

Proverbial brick wall

Proverbial brick wall

And it hurts.

To really make a change, we have to tackle the governments. Once we have tackled the governments, we have to get them to tackle the capitalists. And only then will we see some meaningful changes to the status quo. We have to use our collective votes to ban this ‘two-party’ system; where one is just as bad as the other.

Meanwhile we still have our brick wall.

Here in Brazil we will have elections in October. There were three serious contenders for president. Dilma Rousseff, the incumbent; Aércio Neves, great on economics and infrastructure; and Eduardo Campos, who died a couple of weeks ago in a plane crash. Now on an average, Dilma was polling high, then came Aércio who was catching her up. Eduardo was struggling to get into double figures. His running mate, Marina da Silva has stepped into his shoes. This has changed the game. Dilma and Marina are neck and neck, with Aércio trailing a third.

greenworld

Brazil could become the greenest country

Sorry to bore you with all this political background, but you are about to see why.

If Marina da Silva becomes presidenta, Brazil could become the greenest country on the planet.

Marina, a former minister for the environment, is probably the most conscious politician ever in matters of the environment.

The capitalist agriculture sector is quivering in it’s collective boots; because she will reform, boy how she will reform.

Deforestation in the Amazon could stop overnight.

Ecological and social disasters like the Belo Monte hydro power scheme could have the plug pulled.

When questioned on this, she is keeping mum; a sure indication that she is thinking.

She will aim at showing the world that green is achieveable.

There is a drawback with Marina, she is an evangelical and could take the country backwards in contentious social issues like same sex marriage.

But there is hope.

 

Change the World Wednesday – 3rd Sep

Birthday week is over.

Downloading Birthday 64

 

The last of the BBQ - old bread used for garlic bread

The last of the BBQ – tending old bread used for yummy garlic bread

I managed a greenish BBQ on the Saturday.

Basically only bones and food scraps went out in the rubbish. We used no ‘one use’ products. It turned out I had enough plates, and I have plenty of glasses, mostly saved from cheese spreads, and then there’s my wine glasses.

Wine bottles went out yesterday for recycle collection.

Sunday lunch was salad made from BBQ left overs, Monday’s was the same. Yesterday, I grated the last of the cucumber and chopped the half tomato and some shredded cabbage with grated cheese and chopped celery sticks then mixed in two eggs to make vege fritters.

Total actual vege waste… looks like the last vestiges of cabbage will end up in the compost (it’s getting furry) along with scraps from the preparation of the salads.

You can read report of BBQ here.

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This week’s CTWW is Zero Waste Week.

This week, look for one more way to reduce the amount of waste you generate. Need some inspiration? Check out the Zero Waste Week Facebook Page and scroll through the posts for tips and ideas. Perhaps buy “naked” produce (items without any kind of packaging), carry a reusable bag at the market, or find creative uses for leftover food. If you have a baby in the house, try cloth diapers (nappies) and reusable wipes rather than the disposable varieties. Consider reusable menstrual products instead of single-use items. Find creative ways to upcycle “trash” or donate used items to charity. The idea, this week, is to find one more way to reduce waste..

.This week, I actually brought rubbish home.

thedump

Empty land becomes a local dump

Behind the recently complete apartment development is a plot of land. Brazilians use these as an informal  local dump. This area was cleaned by Comlurb (the council rubbish service) just over a week ago. Already it has entulho (building and demoliton waste), cut trees, and old furniture. Brazilians don’t have access to council dumping areas; they’re too far away, and many don’t have cars, and even less have cars with trailers.

Last week, Thursday on the way to work, I found a white cabinet. On the way home I lugged it home. The next day I went back to inspect what appeard to be a broken, relatively new wardrobe (closet). I took two of the larger pieces home (two trips, a walking stick does hamper one).

You can read about what I did and see photos on No Moaning Today.

So saving rubbish can be considered ‘no waste’….

Yesterday for the recycle collection, I put out glass, plastic, polystyrene and cardboard. The Yucky rubbish went out for the regular collection later.

So far today, it’s 2am, my rubbish has one milk carton, one plastic detergent bottle (both recyclable) and a coffee bag (sack). Now the coffee bag, I don’t honestly know if it’s plastic or some type of foil, or both, so it goes in the yucky rubbish along with a few scraps from my dinner plate..

Really, I don’t have much rubbish. I do try on a daily basis to control what I put out for the landfill collection.

I’ll never achieve Zero Waste, I know that, but I am conscious of what I chuck.

The celery I bought for the BBQ, none wasted, not even the base.

celerybase

The base of the celery

It’s in a pot with some water and it is already sprouting, once it’s established, I’ll plant it. So in the future when I need celery, I won’t need to buy a whole plant, just pluck what I need growing outside the kitchen

The suggestions in the Zero Waste challenge.

  • It’s very hard to find ‘naked’ produce here. I know of one shop where I can get some items, particularly spices and some bulk stuff like ketchup. But they don’t have bulk sugar, flour, etc; the stuff I need.
  • Creative food ideas, see above the challenge; I do that.
  • Upcycling trash, yup, I do that too.

Remember a couple of weeks ago I mentioned that I had a number of old PC items, keyboards and mice and my old cellphone that I was looking for a way to dispose of responsibly. Turns out that the weekly recyclable collection accepts these items too. I also collected a video player and DVD player from the regular rubbish, hopeful that they may be useful, if not I can dispose of them correctly and now they won’t finish up in the landfill as they would have.

Now, it’s back to bed, and hopefully to sleep.

 

No Moaning Today

I’ve just had a great birthday weekend, so I’m not moaning.

Started on Friday with a BBQ at the botequim (local bar), continued on Saturday with a family BBQ, Sunday was rest and recuperation relaxation.

So I start the post off with a splash of some happy colours.

One of the bushes I have outside my gate

One of the bushes I have outside my gate

Thursday night after work, I retrieved…

Here’s an excerpt from the post rather than rewrite the story.

“Yesterday was a busier day than I imagined. The previous night I had saved an old cabinet of sorts from the rubbish, and I had set about making it suitable to use in the kitchen.

It was also going to replace the grotty old thing I have used for the last five years.

Grotty old thing, but it sufficed

Grotty old thing, but it sufficed

And the result of my labours…

A new grotty old thing

A new grotty old thing

When I got it home it was just the top, sides, back and runners for drawers. I added a base plate and two shelves from old wardrobe (closet) sides that I got from the same dump. It’s not fancy, but it’s better than what I had. By the time I had finished, I was exhausted and my back was aching from the exertions of carrying stuff; the dump was about a half kilometre from home, some 500 yards. Doesn’t sound much but when you are on a walking stick, it’s a bloody long way.”

So that was how my birthday started. I am quite pleased with my labours. *pats self on back*

You can read about  and see photos of the family BBQ on the post Back to Normal.

I had another stroke of luck last week. Some time back I got a twig of a beefsteak plant and it took; it is now a healthy bush outside my gate. Before I put it there, I broke another twig off it and put it in a jar on the window kitchen window ledge. But all the leaves fell off and I feared it had died. However, I forgot to throw it out. Last week I noticed this in the window…

A shoot!

So all is well.

Until next Monday, bound to be something to moan about.

 

Nature Ramble

Here’s an issue I have never considered.

We love the outdoors, and some of us try to make the most of it by visiting parks and green areas.

But there are those who do it, and those who complain about people doing it.

Personally, I do it whenever I have the cash to do it, right at my gate.

I couldn’t believe that this was an issue.

Is it anti-social to use barbecues in parks?

Cities around the world are debating whether to permit barbecues in municipal open spaces. What are the dos and don’ts of grilling food in public?

You might recognise the scene on a large patch of public grassland. The odour of inexpertly-charred meat. The babble of drunk people congregating. The spectacle of adults in shorts, arms folded, cheeks flushed with indignation, shouting at each other.

Barbecues are a precarious enough social occasion when they occur in the privacy of a back garden, with smoke and chatter billowing across fences, potentially inciting the ire of neighbours.

In communal spaces like parks – where one ratepayer’s carefree al fresco culinary get-together is another’s smoke-belching, grass-scorching, noisy, litter-strewn, anti-social nuisance – the capacity for confrontation and awkwardness is even greater.

Around the world this summer, civic leaders are grappling with a shared dilemma. In the New York borough of Brooklyn, there are calls to ban grilling in Prospect Park in an effort to rid it of “toxic fumes”.

In Camden, north London, by contrast, a long-standing and controversial barbecue ban is about to be overturned – following in the wake of neighbouring Islington, which lifted a similar prohibition in 2011.

Highbury Fields, north London: A park where barbecues are allowed

The issue can be deeply emotive. Leaders at Bristol City Council were accused of staging “an assault on civil liberties” when they proposed restricting a range of activities including lighting barbecues in parks.

In Rockdale, a suburb of Sydney – where cooking outdoors is widely seen as an expression of national pride – the failure of an effort to overturn a similar ban led to a mass walkout from the council chambers.

By contrast, some naysayers are implacably opposed to the practice of barbecuing in parks under any circumstances.

“Cooking in public places should be illegal,” insists Masterchef judge Gregg Wallace, a noted barbecue-phobe. “It’s going to smell. It’s going to cause a mess. If you want to cook you should do it in the kitchen.

“This is Britain. We have picnics. If you want to have a barbecue, put on a pair of Bermuda shorts and get on a plane for 20 hours to Australia or New Zealand.”

Source: BBCNews Read more

Simple Green Ideas

Actually, this one’s not so simple, and you probably don’t have one of these in the backyard already.

But it’s a great idea seeing how the spring has sprung and it’s coming on BBQ weather.

If you can get one, it’s a great repurpose.

Bourbon Barrel Meat Smoker

Follow that link to my repost yesterday on Things that Fizz & Stuff and see how this can become this…

 

Not a CTWW Post – 25th Dec

Day off…

BBQ for ex and kids today.

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas.

Change the World Wednesday – 15 Nov

failed_stampOMG, it’s Friday, where’d Thursday go?

This post will not be my usual VROOM and razzmatazz…

Because my VROOM got up and left, it followed my razzmatazz right out the door.

This has not been a good week.  Read about it on Hold my Pussy yesterday’s post in Life is but a Labyrinth. It explains everything in very lurid detail and gives you an idea why I didn’t get here.

Thursday, I had similar problems without the lunch; I did however manage to take the promised samples of mint sauce to the restaurant, and I managed to get to class. Which is more than my first afternoon student managed.

So we have arrived at Friday, and I am so apologetic at 4pm, writing a Wednesday post. I have never failed so massively before.

It’s 4pm because I have already BBQed, and spent a leisurely lunch three hours  at the botequim (the bar next door to home), and ah, napped. You see today is a holiday in Brazil, Republic Day. Every such day should be commemorated with a BBQ, but before I could BBQ I had to find the various BBQ tools, which meant I had to wash the dishes. Then I pickled some little onions.

So it is not so much a failure, as a series of failures.

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CTWW this week is another different one.

Ignoring the fact that I committed a heinous crime and bought saucepans that were Teflon coated after dire warnings on CTWW -23 Oct.  In my defence, I can only say that steel and cast iron ware is so difficult to come by and these were so beautiful. I am a romantic at heart.

This week find and share environmental good news. This can be successful efforts by other people … government or corporate solutions … school projects … or even small efforts which you’ve witnessed. The idea, here, is to share the positive, to focus on successful actions which give us hope and let us know that our efforts can make a difference.

 

Want more? Here you go …

Let’s help create some good news. Sign this PETITION to abolish climate changing subsidies.

Here, I can only reiterate the local government moves to introduce Coleta Seletiva which is for recyclable rubbish, and apart from my own efforts has prompted the owner of the botequim next door to separate his glasses, plastics and paper, of which he has a lot, rather than throw them in the regular rubbish. I don’t know if our various discussions on the subject led him to adopt this policy, but I have congratulated him on the change.

There is another local government issue. Brazilians are notorious for throwing rubbish any where. In the last two months the Guarda Municipal (that includes traffic wardens and keepers of council laws and general order, sort of police with no guns) have been issuing instant fines for littering. The movement started in the city centre and has spread to Copacabana beach and beyond. The amount of rubbish discarded in the streets has diminished remarkably, by two thirds already. The movement hasn’t reached our part of the city yet, but the effect is already being felt here.

So slowly, Brazil is catching up with the world.

Now, I have just fired up the BBQ again, the charcoal should be about ready to continue the festivities on our public holiday; in fact, I can smell the charcoal through the window…

 

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