One more full day left (and a few sessions this evening). Last year when I finished the conference I was convinced I wanted to come back. When it was time to come I didn't really feel like I wanted to come. But, now I remember what I felt last year, you have such a good time.
On the way up I talked with our Intern who was taking the van of us up to the collage about the dangers of aspartame, high fructose corn syrup, and GMO seeds. I didn't remember but he works or worked and Earth Fair, and so he knows all about that kind of stuff, so it was fun to have someone who understands it, and talk to them about it. Once you say no to aspartame and high fructose corn syrup that basically means you can't have any gum or candy. I do enjoy gum once in a while (use to anyway) but I never really have bought candy or gum. I tend to save on those things. When it comes to food or something of consumption I usually try to stay as low budget as possible. But now that I am not consuming aspartame that means no gum, unless its made with xylitol.
Frankly, I enjoy xylitol and wish that it was as cheap as sugar. In a lot of Europe and Finland especially it is used in things. It was first produced in Finland after World War I or II, whichever one that they had a shortage of sugar. It was derived from birch trees. Xylitol is present in a lot of fruits, and some vegetables. I also like stevia. I like to put it in baking a lot because most of the rest of my family doesn't like the taste, maybe Elijah and I like the taste, but the rest of the family doesn't really care for it. So I will cut back on sugar and use some stevia. I would like to look into Lo Han, a fruit in Southern China. It seems to be something like stevia.
Mean while, it would still be hard to get rid of sugar entirely in baking, because sugar plays a much bigger part in foods than sweetener. It serves to help it cook, brown and other things. That is why something with a low amount of sugar will not brown very well because the browning is the caramelizing of the sugar in the baked product. So, consume sugar in moderation, as with most things. :)
The other thing I am being introduced to is shortening. I don't think we are going to buy the shortening from the store any more. I think if we do buy shortening it will be palm oil shortening, which I believe is all natural, not hydrogenized (or however you spell it). It is often said by people that the food budget should not be the place to cut spending. That is why I am trying to grow as many vegetables a possible, to cut down on our food budget and still eat healthy. It is still fairly expensive to buy organic for a family of 10. So, that is why having a garden will cut the costs a lot. I will say though, with the large movement of organic the prices do seem to be coming down.
I am looking forward to seeing my cousin, and than going camping with most of the family (Josiah excepted (to use Shakespear english)), and to be back at home. The food here is alright, better than a lot of campuses, but home cooking is always better. Also, I am sure the garden needs me. I can't wait to see how big everything is getting. Besides seeing my little brothers and sisters again. I am looking forward to spending some time with my youngest brother Mattiniah, just getting down on his level and playing with him and talking to him about what he is doing. I just enjoy getting down to his level and seeing the world through his eyes.
Anyway, the audition went well. The audition was for the talent show on Friday night. I think they want to see how long your piece is, and make sure it is appropriate. I am going to be playing Tell Me, Fair Ladies from the Marriage of Figaro.