Candy Thermometer

I got something today that every kid wants (at least they would if they knew what it was for). I got me a candy thermometer!

Whats it for you say? Well to take the temperature of candy of course. Its used for making all kinds of soft and hard sweet treats.

You can read up on it on wikipedia here:

What I need it for is determining the best time at which to take the sap off the heat so it cools to a viscous form recognized as table syrup. For the medium type maple syrup, you wait until the boiling sap reaches a temperature of between 106 and 112 degrees celsius. I’ve likely been taking it off the heat just before that mark. Sap boiled down to 66% sugar apparently boils at 4 degrees above normal water  (100 degrees Celsius), so that means at 66%, it should be at 104 degrees celsius. So 104 and and above is gravy… er,… syrup.

A wide range of candies can be made with such a device including but not limited to the following:

  • syrups
  • jams
  • fudges
  • lollipops
  • brittles
  • caramels

My mom used to can stuff, she would make jams, salsa stuff, pickled this and pickled that, picked vegetables, and of course maple syrup in season – as with all of them I guess. I actually don’t recall if she ever used one of these, you can go without it by taste, smell, and just experience. I’ve always just done it by taste and colour for maple syrup. And I usually keep it lighter then recommended, partly because you get a lot more volume out of it by not boiling it down as much and it still tastes VERY sweet.

These are the sorts of things I hope Lindsey and I can pass on to our children through actions, life and such, as opposed to them having to google it at some point in their life. Not the specifics necessarily, but the ambition to go out and try this stuff, learn about it, feel free to make mistakes and figure out their own way to do things.

For me its a mix of what I saw my parents do, how we did things as a family growing up, how I’ve learned on my own to do things and then all supplemented by others experience on the Internet of cookbooks and these are all excellent resources. Just because technology is a big part of our lives (globally), doesn’t mean that we have to forget these granola type things!

Non confidence vote – bogus

So the big political news is that we’ll be going to the polls in a short while. The Harper conservatives lost a non-confidence vote driven by the opposition parts.

I think this vote is meaningless. Polls show that conservatives will just win again, and I support them actually.

Who is voting for this non confidence thing?? Certainly not the Canadian people, I don’t think anyone wants another election (and that assumes most care right now about it, likely most don’t have political issues on the top of their list if at all)

And how many times do the Liberals, Bloc and NDP have to do this and subsequently lose the election before they realize infact canadians DO have some kind of faith in the conservatives? Isn’t this the 3rd time its happened, second at least and the polls aren’t changing, or haven’t significantly since last time around.

I think we as Canadians should send a message to the opposition parties and give a majority to conservatives just to teach them a lesson 😛 Sure, conservatives aren’t perfect but overall the country is in decent shape – better economically then any other country in the world they say. And which party can say they have any less corrupt track record that we would now want to vote them in?? The lesser of 2 (3 or 4) evils comes to mind.

No, personally I think Harper is doing a fine job. Sure, there are questionable things, but that happens with every government. I think that ‘Iggy’ guy should step down and they should get a leader on the liberal team that is personable, someone we can actually like, and then, and ONLY then it might tip the balance. For now though, the Liberals need to get it that Canadians are OK with how things are running now (I’ve not heard much other opinion on it that has stayed afloat).

I think this is a waste of taxpayers money and a waste of time debating, and campaigning… just let the guy work for a full term and then we’ll vote as per the regular schedule please! Thanks!

Also, how about the Liberals go talk to some people and actually find out if we all thing the situation is bad enough that we need another election now – methinks most would deem the current government adequate if not doing a decent job under the world circumstances.

I don’t often blog on politics, hardly ever really, but I’m on board with Harper. I wouldn’t mind seeing what he would do in a majority position. At least then, he could do some real damage and give us a good reason to go to the polls!


Am I crazy? Does anybody really not like Harper that much? Is there really any good reason to have elections AGAIN??

Home Alone Again

I’ve been home alone for the last 5 days +/-.  Its been quite nice in some ways. I get lots of work around the house done! No sleeping baby to wake up, no other commitments to attend to. Ok, well, I do have work and website stuff to do :/ Still, more relaxing then usual.

Right now I have sap boiling down (which will likely make this house seem like a grow-op house with all the moisture floating around). And generally not too much else pressing tonight which is really nice. May watch some tv, I should probably bring  in some wood, and I should get some more website work done… ok, I do have lots to do 🙁 Sure is nice to sit here for a while too, my excuse can, at least for the time being, be that I’m still sick. Cough is hanging on. Come on vitamins! Hoping they get my body back into shape so it can fight this junk. Eating veggies too when I can, even though I hate them.

I’m SO looking for a reason to drive into town and get a Tims.. I do need a part for the toilet I just installed,… but I AM going in tomorrow too anyways (for iPad 2) so I should save the $7.42821 that it costs to drive in. I’m also going to Cantire on saturday, so definitely thats a good reason to wait. Darn, just reasoned myself out of a Tims :S

And YEP, I’m heading into town tomorrow, I plan on being at the future shop at around 5pm for the iPad 2 launch. Will I be anywhere near early enough? No idea, I have zero idea how many people will be lined up, if any at launch. I assume there will be a few, but hopefully not enough to exhaust future shop inventory! Sadly, they couldn’t tell me anything about the shipment, how many there were, what models,… they couldn’t even tell me the price? Wha? Their website HAS the prices on it for the second gen ipad, couldn’t they look on their corporate website for that? Anyways, good to know that in the age of technology, a tech store like future shop isn’t weighing themselves down with said technology in order to provide the customer any extra benefit on top of the one where the customer lightens his pants by laying down a wad of cash for (enter high tech over priced product here).

Welp, I should get me a tea to sooth my throat, check the sap to see if its magically and revolutionarily turned into syrup yet and watch some TV. Wish me luck!


PS: Don’t worry, that image isn’t of our tree, that would be brutal 😛 Just a pic stolen from a tapping site that has a different approach to tapping trees – in a good way: BTW, I think I need a Candy thermometer now.

Beans, Hogs, and Bible Prophecy