Wesley Kohn

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since Nov 05, 2019
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Recent posts by Wesley Kohn

The most effective way & long-term way to get rid of mice is deny them a food source.   Become anal-retentive clean in the kitchen.   Even grease on a stove top is their version of a feast.  Every food source should be in mouse proof containers.   Your garbage can should also be mouse proof.   I would suggest switching to a 5-gallon bucket with a Gamma Lid for all food scraps and wash all food containers you dispose of in an open garbage container.   Mice need food to survive and will move on to other hunting grounds if your home does not provide them a food source.

To find out how they are getting into your house, lightly dust along all the walls with talcum powder or similar powder.   Look for their trail.   Once you locate their entrance point, shove some poison into the hole, then steel wool, then permanently patch the hole.   Winter is actually a great time to find the holes in your home because a lit candle will reveal even the smallest crack or hole.  Filling these holes will also help keep your heat inside.

Mice who do not go after bait already have a food source.   Until you deny them their preferred food they will not go seeking after another source of food.   Mice are creatures of habit.   They use the same trails and same food sources.

Mice are filthy.   They poop and psss on your food and on your dishes, glasses, etc.   If you are not doing so already, place your dishes, etc. with the surface you eat of off facing down.   Glasses, dishes, pots, pans, etc. should be stored upside down or have a lid on.   This way you never eat off a surface that a mouse has fouled up.   This is required in restaurants or the Health Inspector writes you up.   I even have my wife doing this in our home.

Mice starve to death in a few weeks, but they probably have been working hard in creating food stashes.   So it might take as much as a month or two to get rid of them using the "clean kitchen" solution.   A combination of setting out poison and a clean kitchen will get rid of them eventually.



1 week ago
Fermentation is acidic.   I am no expert but I think that if the PH level of the bubbling water is acidic, then you're probably right about it being fermentation.

It has been 2 weeks since you posted this.   Have you seen signs of rooting?
3 weeks ago
In researching my mother-in-law's ailments, we kept running across Garlic as a very good treatment.   Popping whole garlic cloves is not pleasant.   They are too big to swallow whole and the flavor too strong to chew.  

Recently my wife found a solution in "Weck Small-Batch Preserving" by Stephanie Thurow.   Most of the book is on various recipes for fermenting foods.  Fermenting garlic turns out to mellow its flavor somewhat, and make it taste sort of like you soaked it in butter.   It is very easy to get my mother-in-law to take garlic now.

As to its effectiveness?   I am forbidden by the boss to post pictures of our family online, but what I saw yesterday was surely worthy of a before & after picture.   She had the typical "old-lady grey skin" when she moved in with us just one month ago.   I came home yesterday and she actually had pink cheeks!  We started giving her garlic only two weeks ago.  And despite it being winter when arthritis does its worst - she starting to sleep through the night without having to take a pain pills.''

One fermentation trick my wife does to keep the garlic submerged is to place an ordinary Ball Jar lid on top of the garlic then use marbles as weights.   This seems to work better than glass weights as the garlic is very buoyant and kept tipping the weight.  The marbles are forcing it to stay submerged.  

3 weeks ago

r ranson wrote:I wonder if a dishwasher would damage them?  We haven't actually pressure canned in these jars yet and the people I gifted to don't have a pressure cooker/canner.



My dishwasher has never damaged them.   I should mention that I am married to her.  (I might have to edit that out at a later date or change my name if she decides to get online and read my posts here.)

We remove them, rinse and hang on a hook until they are used again.   They are never in contact with the food, so no need to dishwasher them.  I have seen people recommend boiling them prior to use, but we don't.  We put them in hot water but not so hot you cannot put your hands in the water prior to using them.  

My wife tried Tattler lids, but didn't like them.   They required a 2-step process to make sure they sealed.   With the Weck jars she turns off the flame when the processing time is completed and leaves everything as is until the next morning.   She then pulls out cool jars, removes the clips and makes sure of the seal by lifting the jars by the lid.  So everything is ignored until cool.   With Tattler lids you have to remove the canner lid and remove the jars while still hot to seal them.
1 month ago

r ranson wrote:Every time I got a jar back, the rubber was stretched beyond recognition.  



We have heard of the rubbers stretching, but have never experienced this ourselves.   Wife thinks this is caused by reheating or canning with more than 2 clips.   2 clips provide the perfect amount of pressure holding it closed for canning.   A lot of websites & videos advise to use 3 clips when pressure canning, but we still only use just 2 clips and have not had any issues.  That might be because we are close to sea level.
1 month ago

Skandi Rogers wrote:As another European I read the American preserving rules.. and I see money



"Money" is probably right.   Other than the initial investment, we have not spent more than about $10 Canadian replacing worn out/lost seals since coming here 7 years ago.  Every time we add a child to the family we need more jars but consider them a lifetime investment.  Not one jar or lid has broken on us, and only 2 failed to seal when canned and both of those because of overfilling.

If you look at the internet, nearly every American recipe includes a warning of certain death if you don't can using a Ball/Kerr jar.   I have enclosed a covered area outside so that starting next year canning can occur outside when it is hot.  The Presto canner came with a warning that we could not use our outdoor burner with their pot.  

My wife loves her American canner though.   She has two canners, an American Canner and a Presto Canner.   The seal in the Presto canner has to be replaced every year but the American canner doesn't have a disposable seal.   I am of the mind to not buy any more seals for the Presto Canner and get another American canner.  Maintenance costs add up over the years.

I think too many only look at the initial higher investment and don't take into consideration money that has to be spent on maintenance and disposable features means less money in your pocket than if you bought a maintenance free set up.
1 month ago
My wife lived in Germany for a few years as a teen.  They rented a home from a little old lady who lived in a cottage next door.  It is from watching her that my wife learned to can.   In Europe, (or at least Germany) the most common form of home canning is in Weck Jars.   These jars use glass lids so that nothing touches your food except glass.   The rubber seals are reusable.   The jars are far more substantial than Ball/Kerr jars.   The seals are a thick soft rubber and are reusable, so we do not have an annual cost of purchasing lids over and over again.  

You can quite literally take a jar off the shelf and stick it in the microwave, pressure cooker, or hot water.   Heating the food while still in the jar and then eating from the jar is commonly done in our house.   This means the jar itself and the spoon is the only thing needing washing.  

The mold style Weck jar can handle freezing.   They are stable when stack and, if you place the tongue facing you, you can easily tell if a jar's seal has failed while it is on the shelf.  My wife pressure cans everything from butter to veggies to chicken stock with no issues.   We constantly are fermenting foods in them, with or without a bubbler.  

So, my question is, why are Ball & Kerr jars so popular in North America?  Ball/Kerr jars require annual purchases and are fragile.   They cannot be stably stacked.   The lids are are a one time use and, per some sources, have a shelf life.   You cannot reheat the food in the jar.  You cannot freeze in the jar.  


1 month ago
If you can catch one, they are a stronger flavored chicken.   Older ones can be a bit gamey but not so much that some seasoning cannot cover that.  The texture is tougher and not as much fat as a chicken so you might have to baste it or the meat is dry.   I don't think older ones are worth the bother because they are so tough.    

The bones are less brittle.

Ours are too hard to catch.   They came with the property and are self-proclaimed guard dogs.  People on the other side of the planet know when someone who does not belong comes up to our door.

I prefer chickens to guinea because I am the one that has to catch supper.  

If given the choice of chicken or guinea fowl, I would pick chickens because they are easier to raise, wander less, and easier to catch.
1 month ago

Denise Cares wrote:To answer the first question of what is a reliable source to know how a drug is metabolized you simply have to look up the drug in a PDR (Physician's Desk Reference).  This is a gigantic book available for purchase at a hefty price or check on-line at www.pdr.net.  E-mail for info to: < customer.service@medec.com>.  You might also check at the local library or a medical library if you live near one.  Many doctor's offices, clinics, and all pharmacies and hospitals have them for use by the staff in various departments. In this reference book you'll find info on pharmacokinetics, metabolism, elimination of drug and route of elimination, half life and other detailed info about drug interactions, uses, warnings, etc.  There are also PDR's for other things like Nutritional Supplements, Herbal Medicines and Nonprescription Drugs.  You might even ask a medical professional or library if they would give you their old/retired copy when they update to a new edition.  



Thank you Denise.  This ended up telling me exactly what we were looking to find out.   Not being medical, I tried to hunt for urine or feces, stool, etc.   Search for the word "excreted" after looking up the drug to find out how and it what form it is eliminated.

It also told me something that has me upset with my mother-in-law's doctor.   We found out that she should not be taking Tylenol with Metformin, which she takes for her mild diabetes.   This should have been told to us as I could have given this to her for a headache not knowing it would harm her.   So I am twice grateful for this link.
1 month ago