The Daily Blend

Writing to make connections

Mulled Wine for Christmas Cheer

With the holidays approaching we can all use some tips on festive fare for entertaining.

Mulled wine with fruit and spices

Unique and special here in North America, mulled wine has been a staple winter drink in Europe for centuries. My introduction to it was on a cold, grey day – in Germany – in February.

My husband and I were on a business trip to attend a trade fair. One morning at breakfast we were told the market was worth a look. We had a few hours to spare, so we walked through the cold, grey streets. On the cobbled square, behind a huge steaming pot, stood a cheerful woman ladling out hot, spiced glühwein (gloo-vine). One sip and I was hooked.

Fast forward to a few years ago

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Reduce Shedding with the Furminator

When my daughters were eight and ten, they and my husband started talking (again) about adopting a dog. I agreed that some day we might have a dog but it would have to be a non-shedding breed. There are few things that cause me to say the “h” word, but I hate dog hair. Eventually, the dog we adopted was a mixed German shepherd and husky. Not exactly what I’d been hoping for.

Mixed Husky German Shepherd holding comb

photo by Chris Shearly

Soon there was dog fur everywhere. Yuck! Most of it was the fine undercoat fur. It’s almost impossible to get out of fleece clothing and off smooth wool jackets and trousers. We even coined the word “dust-puppies” for the clumps of fur that we found under and behind the furniture. I was desperate for a way to reduce shedding in our beloved pet.

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Kitchen Blender Fun & Facts

You may have seen a video or two of the viral marketing series Will It Blend?. If you haven’t, you’ve missed some entertaining and educational trivia. A host gives us upbeat patter while dropping unlikely objects into a kitchen blender. The host then turns on the blender to show us what will happen when the objects are blended.

Hunous made in the kitchen blender

photo by

I love watching this show. It’s fascinating to see stuff get crunched up and smoothed out.

Interestingly, a really good kitchen blender works so well not because of the blades but because of science. Something called cavitation. Basically, the blades spin so fast that they tear holes in the liquid you’re blending. It’s the resulting bubbles of air that actually do the work of smoothing the stuff into a liquid.

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Technology and Making Coffee

Coffee, like anything else you put in your mouth, is all a matter of taste. You may like coffee from a thousand dollar barista machine, you may like French press coffee, you may like vacuum coffee and that’s just fine. These technologies make good coffee, but for me, they are unnecessary.

Making coffe Turkish-style. photo by Bertil Videt

photo by Bertil Videt

Your Friendly Neighbourhood Luddite

If you don’t already know me, you need to know that I am a bit of a Luddite. Luddites were a group of 19th century artisans who destroyed machinery that would allow factory owners to replace their skilled labour with cheaper unskilled labourers. The word means someone who doesn’t like technology.

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