Spaghetti Squash – baked with garlic butter

Decided to try something new for us, we’ve had spaghetti squash as part of pasta dishes and we’ve had it with brown sugar too.  This was a nice addition to a roast beef meal we had yesterday.


1 small spaghetti squash (about 3-4 pounds)
2 tablespoons butter
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1/4 cup finely minced parsley (or basil)
1/2 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese


1. Preheat oven to 375F. Pierce squash a few times with sharp paring knife (to let steam escape). Bake spaghetti squash for 60 minutes, or until a paring knife pierces easily through skin with little resistance. Let squash cool for 10 minutes.

2. Cut squash in half, lengthwise. Use a fork to remove and discard the seeds. Continue using fork to scrape the squash to get long, lovely strands. If the squash seem difficult to scrape, return the squash to bake for an additional 10 minutes.

3. Heat a large saute pan with the butter and the garlic over medium-low heat. When garlic becomes fragrant, add parsley, salt and spaghetti squash strands. Toss well, sprinkle in the parmesan cheese and taste to see if you need additional salt. The spaghetti squash should have a slight crunch (i.e. not mushy) – but if you like it softer, cover the pan and cook 2 more minutes.

Whitecap Pionus Parrot

Here is the first look at our new Parrot, which comes from Costa Rica.  These are relatively new birds to North America, as compared to other parrot species that most are used to seeing.  Pionus are great birds, quiet, smaller, very tame and easy to care for. She is quite young and still does not have her final plumage (see below for how she’ll look soon).

Abby has really taken to our 3 dogs and our daughter’s lovebirds. Great to have a new family member and I’ve finally acquired the one pet I’ve always sought – ever since my young days of working in the pet store…

She hangs out in my office, quietly eating, sleeping, climbing on shoulder and chair.

Stay tuned…


10 Tips for Using Google+

Straight from the Google team:

  1. Use circles to segment your audience and reach the right people. For example, if you sell sporting equipment, you might have different circles for bicyclists, swimmers, and runners.
  2. Add photos, videos, or links to your posts by dragging them directly to the share box. To add a link, drag the icon next to the URL from the address bar to the share box.
  3. Share behind-the-scenes photos. You can can edit your photos directly in Google+ and share animated GIF photos–a great way to draw attention to your page.
  4. Check out the drop-down arrow at the top of Google+ posts. You can manage the way people interact with your own posts, like disabling comments or editing your post. You can link to, report abuse, or mute other people’s posts.
  5. Want to add style to your posts and make them more visually appealing? To add italics, use underscores around your words: _ italics_ → italics. Asterisks make words bold (* bold* → bold), and hyphens will add a strikethrough (- strikethrough - → strikethrough).
  6. Create a posting schedule to post at least once a day. Engage your community with questions and +Mention your community so they feel the love and share your post with more people. Try posting at different times of the day to see what best engages your audience.
  7. Create an Event to drive foot-traffic to a sale or new product launch, and to drive attendance for your Hangouts. With Events on mobile, guests can RSVP, get directions, and even have their photos and videos uploaded to the Event page if Party Mode is enabled.
  8. Host regular Hangouts or Hangouts on Air to have real face-to-face conversations with your followers. Consider behind-the-scenes tours, launch new products in person or simply say thank you to your supporters.
  9. Get creative and stay current with your Google+ banner. We’ve seen some delightful use of animation and fun seasonal banners, too, that keep a page fresh and fun.
  10. Have your whole team help with the page–add managers by navigating to Pages on the navigation ribbon on the left, hovering over the page, clicking on Managers, and adding more people there.

Get even more tips on how your business can use Google+ by checking out the help center or the Google+ Your Business page!