It’s a Crazy World! Loco Weed Vs. Chinese Fortune Cookies

This morning, my friend, Diane, complained that she was unable to get decent Chinese food delivered to her house in Puyallup, Washington, but that she had the option, if she so desired,  to have marijuana and related products delivered without problem.    I checked out the link that she posted and this appears to be true.  A website called THCfinder.com lists Puyallup as a delivery location for the new legalized marijuana products such as an $8 pack of Boggle Gum or other hybrid and specially cultivated marijuana products.

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The state became one of the first to legalize pot for recreational use two years ago, but there remain many challenges ahead.  Washington is currently setting up a licensing system for pot growers and sellers and the Fed is busy setting a new limit on the amount of pot that can be found in the bloodstream for safe driving.  Medical marijuana is also still in the picture.

Things are really changing.  Now, it is  legal to light up in both Denver and Seattle, and marijuana is approved for medicinal use in some 20 states.  There’s one thing the Obama administration is most concerned when it comes to legalized recreational marijuana.  That is  making sure that kids are not part of this grand pot experiment.  In Washington, the rules have been written to restrict marketing and advertising. And there’s a hefty tax levied on legal pot.

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Yup. everything is changing.  Many view this as a bad thing…but is it really?  Is it even as bad as alcohol?  Guess we’ll see.   Colorado is already reporting a lower crime rate and profits from legal marijuana crops going toward school improvements.    However, Washington has run into problems.  A legal and political haze is making it all but impossible for entrepreneurs, activists, regulators, and smokers to know when legal pot will actually be a reality in Washington — which puts the high-stakes marijuana legalization experiment at risk of failure not just in the state, but in the rest of country.

Some of the bizarre complications currently plaguing Washington are inherent in any conflict between state and federal government. Marijuana remains a Schedule I prohibited substance under federal law, although US Attorney General Eric Holder has said the Justice Department will allow Washington and Colorado — Amendment 64 there also legalized recreational pot as of January 1 — to proceed unhindered. Some complications arise due to cumbersome provisions in the Washington law itself.  And others from the way the Washington State Liquor Control Board (WSLCB) has interpreted its authority to create a new recreational marijuana system.

Even when Washington’s aspiring weed moguls finally do get their licenses, they’ll have only begun the permit process. Each license holder must also secure business permits from local authorities who are often openly hostile to legal pot. Most growing operations will need construction permits to build their irrigation, electrical, and waste-disposal systems. Premises must be found. Leases must be signed. Finances must be secured to pay for all this, and not from traditional lenders — banks remain skittish about funding an industry that remains illegal under federal law, even after the Justice and Treasury departments announced in February that financial institutions may work with licensed pot businesses. Lastly, marijuana has to actually grow. It takes at least a couple of months to produce a crop.

Over the next decade, we will probably see more states legalize marijuana.  Oklahoma is in line and there is talk of legalization down the road in Texas and in other states.  Only time will tell if this will be a good thing.  One thing that even opponents of legalization should consider, however.  Even if you are opposed to smoking marijuana yourselves, legalizing it will make things safer all around.  It will cut down on drug-related crimes by eliminating street dealers.  Regulation of bud will keep the quality high and the dangerous chemicals out.  It will generate revenue for schools, roads and health care and it will cause it to be much less likely to fall into the hands of children.

The jury is out on this one.  We’ll see how it goes.  There was a tremendous bruhaha about the legalization of alcohol, back in the day. Now it is legal everywhere.  I have a feeling the same will be true of pot.

Folded Light and Shadows by Yuko Nishimura

I have long been fascinated by the variety of works that can be accomplished through folding paper.  My friend, Arlene Elizabeth, for instance, makes giant representational works from tiny origami cranes.  I have her portrait of the Daili Lama hanging here in my office.

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Japanese artist Yuko Nishimura takes things to another level by  transforming single white sheets of special handmade paper into complex geometric wall reliefs.

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Please visit the Yuko Nishimura website to see additional works and to read more about the artist.

Having an Opera Day

One of the things that brought us together initially, was the fact that both John and I were (and still are) big opera fans.  When we met, I had seasons tickets to the Houston Grand Opera , and we used to go together frequently….or I would go by myself….or I would go with my best mate, Katie or with my kids.

We are an opera family.  While still a high school student, my  son used to be an usher at the Houston Grand Opera, which allowed him to see all of the operas free of charge.   He has loved opera since.  I took all of my kids with me, however.  Again…we are an opera family.

I saw Pavarotti sing Nessun Dorma and other of his “greatest hits” in person, upon a number of occasions, thanks to dear Katie, and still weep at the notion of his no longer being among the living. He was magnificent!  I was never fortunate enough to see him in an actual opera, however.

John and I both adore Puccini’s operas and have been listening to them this morning with the windows open, the cool breeze blowing in and the flowers blooming everywhere outside. This is another day in which the temperature is mild and absolutely perfect. (These Portland springs and summers make the dark winters well worth the wait. )

As I write this, we are listening to Pavarotti sing Turandot.  There are simply no words to describe how beautiful this music is!  It really brings out the romance in my husband, too.   🙂

Fell in love with him all over again today.

This, my friends, is a beautiful day.

Thank you, opera.

Cinnamon Roll Scones

 

Inspired by the delicious scones at Lauretta Jean’s, an awesome bakery down the street, I  got up early this morning and made these for my husband.

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It drives me up the wall that the woman in the video keeps calling these “scons” rather than “scones”…but whatever. This recipe is fast, easy and delicious. It is really hard to screw this one up. I make these in all kinds of flavors, but the cinnamon roll ones, I believe, are the best.

Instead of white flour, however, I use Bob’s Red Mill whole grain oat flour, and I use far less sugar than this woman uses…and I do not use processed white sugar at all. I use date sugar or coconut sugar or turbanado sugar.  I usually don’t even keep sugar in the house….Same deal with butter…but when I make these, I gotta have it.

Sometimes, I make a fruit compote to fill the center…blueberry, marionberry, raspberry. Sometimes, I do an orange marmalade or a lemon curd with lots of zest, and those are good, too…but there is something comforting about the smell of fresh cinnamon scones baking in the oven. Makes the house smell good all day long.

Metamorphosis

One of the reasons we went for our walk together yesterday, was because I have been having difficulty coming up with a design for my Doctors Without Borders mosaic.  With only 5 weeks left in which to complete it, I have been looking for inspiration everywhere.  With all of the flowers and butterflies and beautiful things that I saw yesterday, I believe I have come up with the perfect design:

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I enjoy the fact that this design is built on a circle rather than a more traditional butterfly shape.  I like it that it has straight lines mixed with curved ones.  This lends a sense of grace to the overall design.  Yes, I think this, or some variation of this, will be my design.  John has promised to cut a piece of Wedi-backer board for me today or tomorrow so I can get the design laid down and get started.  My glass cutting skills are a little rusty, but I plan to make most of this piece from glass.  Haven’t decided on a background yet….maybe smalti….maybe tile.  Will have to wait and see how it goes. I want to make this large enough for the wings to go outside of the borders of the piece so that it only shows a portion of the butterfly.

In other news, I have decided to paint the kitchen.   I painted it a deep, dusty blue a few years ago, which looks great with the white cabinets, but  have been longing for something lighter and brighter, so am going to lighten it back up to white and put in a smoky gray/green glass back splash.  I have a lot of company coming this summer, so need to hop to it.  I want to do some kind of mosaic work over the stove….but we shall see…..

I love having all of these projects, and it feels great to complete each one.