(TMU) – Supporting the businesses in your community is the right thing to do, which is exactly what dad Chris Kyle recently did. Chris decided to have lunch at a new establishment, very new and very nearby. Right in his own home in fact, at Ava’s Kitchen!
Chris’ daughter Ava, owner and cook, was delighted to welcome a customer and showed him to the best table in the house, decorated with balloons and with a full view of the kitchen, from where he could watch his meal being prepared by Ava.
After finishing his lunch, Chris wrote an honest and objective review for Ava’s Kitchen on his Instagram account. Not only did he thank Ava for the lovely meal, he also mentioned the cleanliness of the establishment but was disappointed that he had to wait much longer than expected for his lunch but, on the positive side, felt sure the service would improve with experience. People loved this dad’s amusing tale recounting lunch at Ava’s and the awesome relationship between the two. Not surprisingly, the post went viral quickly.
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So I tried to support another Black Owned Business for lunch today. It’s called Ava’s Kitchen, just opened end of April. It’s a very clean establishment, but whewww let me tell you about this owner. First off, I asked why there are balloons on my chair, and it’s not my birthday? She talm’bout, mind yah business; those are Mommy’s. I been waiting on my order to get done for 45 minutes, and I’m the only customer here. She was making good progress at first, then she stopped for 20 minutes to go watch Paw Patrol. Overall the customer service could be better, but the cook is a cutie; so I’ll give her another chance. Let’s not give up on Black businesses so fast after one mistake. 💕
Chris’s captured his daughter’s personality perfectly. “Ava’s personality is absolutely amazing,” he told social media. “She is such a silly girl. From the moment she wakes up, she’s laughing, smiling, and playing the entire day.”
The duo spend usually spend their days together from sunrise to sunset. Chris explained: “As a full-time entrepreneur, I work from home which allows me to be hands-on with my baby girl daily.”
According to Chris, he was not that keen on getting the play kitchen for Ava at first, admitting that, “When my wife made the purchase, I was hesitant about spending a few hundred dollars on it.” Of course he changed his mind once he saw just how much Ava enjoyed playing with her kitchen. “It has been worth every penny. Ava is the star of her own little world when she is ready to play.”
Chris has been overwhelmed by the loving and encouraging response to their now viral post. “During these tough times, I’m glad to see our post shine bright in the lives of people around the world.”
More info: Instagram
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These Old Grain Silos Were Converted into A Unique Farmhouse
(TMU) – After 30 years, John and Judi Stuart decided to put the fast pace and bright lights of Las Vegas behind them. Searching for a change in pace, they bought 82 acres of farmland in Yamhill County, Willamette Valley, Oregon. Complete with a ranch house and three storage silos, the Stuarts had several ideas of what to do with the charming property and finally settled on one idea, turning Abbey Road Farm into a bed and breakfast – and that’s exactly what they did.
Instead of starting from scratch, they used what was already on the farm, in this case it was three grain silos, and transformed them into several guest bedrooms and an event center, with amazing results!
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John spent his childhood in the countryside of England and other parts of Europe, and life was simple. When the couple visited Oregon, John realized that was where he wanted to live for the rest of his life.
Abbey Road Farm felt right to the Stuarts, as if it was waiting for them, and they sealed the deal on the property in March 2003. That was the easy part, the next step was to get the business licenses and necessary permits in place.
The farm already had viable land for crops, and had two acres of orchids and Queen-Ann cherries and there was already a charming ranch house, with three round grain-storage silos behind the house.
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First, they started renovating and overhauling the ranch house, now, it’s part of the Bed & Breakfast and doubles as an events center, with the renovation of the silos next.
Turns out Yamhill County, where they live, did not allow silo conversions into living spaces, but John was not about to give up on their plan and worked tirelessly with the planning committee to seeking solutions on what was possible to do, which ultimately led to him securing approval for the silo conversions.
B is for the Silo Suites B&B! Three grain silos house 5 gorgeous suites that can be rented year round. The perfect…
Although the silos kept their outer metallic covering, the interiors are furnished with a modern Victorian style and offer every modern convenience a traditional B&B has. The central silo has a living room downstairs and a guest room upstairs while the two outer silos each have a guest bedroom on each floor.
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The outer space of the ranch house and the lower floor has been converted into a luxurious events center, with more guest rooms added upstairs, and finally, the water treatment building was converted to a shed for their farmyard materials and equipment.
The Abbey Road Farm bed and breakfast immediately became a landmark in Yamhill County and opened tourism opportunities in the community. Guest typically spend a week or more at the B&B enjoying the fresh air, long walks, beautiful views and the Oregon wines.
The Stuarts has also cultivated fescue grass seed on 60 acres of the farmland. Willamette Valley is globally popular for the production of grass seed and they also produce their own goat milk, cheese and other products from a small herd of goats on the farm.
Good news: The Abbey Road Farm tasting room was opened on the 15th of May under strict COVID-19 protocols. Please click the link to check dates, times and current regulations before visiting!
The Bizarre Story of the Blue-Skinned Family From Kentucky
(TMU) – The Fugates, a blue-skinned family from the hills of Kentucky has attracted and baffled scientists for generations, although their condition has now been explained as being caused by the disease Methemoglobinemia, which can make a person’s skin blue.
Members of the family are descendants of Martin Fugate and Elizabeth Smith who lived in Hazard, Kentucky around 1800. Both of them were carriers of the recessive methemoglobinemia (met-H) gene, and coincidentally, so was a nearby clan who had members that married and had children with Fugate descendants. Many of the children who have been born in this bloodline were born with met-H and had a blue skin color.
The Fugates and their condition was not known to researchers until the mid 20th century when a nurse named Ruth Pendergrass, along with the hematologist Madison Cawein III, made a detailed study of their ancestry. At the time, the family was living around the area of Troublesome Creek and Ball Creek in Kentucky.
Cawein treated the family with a substance called methylene blue, which he said eased their symptoms and reduced the blue coloring of their skin. He later published his research on the family and their ancestry in the Archives of Internal Medicine in 1964.
The last known descendant of the Fugate bloodline to be born with blue skin is Benjamin Stacy, who was born in 1975. It is said that his blue skin tone faded as he grew older, but he retained that complexion for most of his life.
In the 1980s and 1990s, the Fugates dispersed from their home region, and as a result the family gene pool became much more diverse, thus decreasing the chances that this recessive gene will return.
Dr. Ayalew Tefferi, a hematologist from Minnesota’s Mayo Clinic, says that this is an incredibly rare condition that is not usually seen in real life.
“You almost never see a patient with it. It’s a disease that one learns about in medical school and it’s infrequent enough to be on every exam in hematology,” Tefferi told ABC News.
Inherited methemoglobinemia is a rare condition, but there are a few other people who have been diagnosed with the condition. It is believed that some of these patients could have been Fugate ancestors, but searches for direct links have proven inconclusive thus far.
In addition to blue skin, Methemoglobinemia can also cause a variety of other symptoms including headache, dizziness, shortness of breath, nausea, poor muscle coordination. Complications from the condition may include seizures and heart arrhythmias.
This condition is not always inherited either, and can sometimes be caused by environmental factors, including medications, chemicals, or food. In fact, most cases of this condition are acquired and not inherited.
In 2008, a blue-skinned man who came to be known as “papa smurf“ made headlines after his skin color changed as a result of consuming too much home-made colloidal silver.
Methemoglobinemia can also arise in patients with pyruvate kinase deficiency due to impaired production of NADH, the essential co-factor for Diaphorase I. Similarly, patients with glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency may have impaired production of another co-factor, NADPH, according to Wikipedia.
You Can Camp for Free and Dig for Your Own Crystals, Gemstones at This Mine Near Atlanta
(TMU) — Gem and crystal collectors love nothing more than mining for their own treasures and North America has plenty of public mines to go digging. If you’re planning a trip to the South Carolina area, or just passing through, consider adding an extra day or two to your trip, if time permits, for a mining adventure that might have you heading home with some stunning gems and crystals.
The Diamond Hill Mine in Abbeville is one of South Carolina’s primary crystal mines with six acres of land open to the public to dig for crystals. Just about a two and a half hour drive from Atlanta, and you can even camp overnight for free.
The Appalachian Mountains are some of the oldest mountains in the world.
Over millions of years, erosion to the southern part of the range exposed an area of about three acres which contained the biggest variety of quartz crystals in the world, called Diamond Hill. Some of the best Amethyst, Smoky and Clear Quarts, Skeletal (Elestial), Angle Plated, Iron and Manganese Oxide coated, Aura, and other crystals as well as minerals such as Beryl, Garnet, and Epidote have been found there.
The public digging site is open every day of the year and visitors pay just $20 to dig for a full day (from 9 am until sunset) and whatever is found is yours to keep! Everything on the digging site came from the mine with nothing added. To make your trip worthwhile, you’ll need to take your own supplies such as food, water, and tools like a shovel, a rake, a long screwdriver, a rock hammer, a sledgehammer, a pick, strong durable gloves, and containers to put your treasures in.
You don’t need to make a booking for a day’s dig, just sign-in between 9am and 2pm. However you will need to call or email ahead of time if you’d like to stay overnight. There are several spots available to set up camp and hook-ups for RV’s are available at no additional charge.
Once the bug has bitten, you may want to explore other areas for treasures. Bear in mind that many of these areas are off the beaten track and you’ll need supplies to last the duration of your stay.
Here’s a few destinations to wet your appetite:
The Emerald Hollow Mine located in Hiddenite, North Carolina is the only public prospecting destination for emeralds in the United States. The area is often referred to as one of the most unique geological locations in North America. There’s no need to go digging for gems at the Emerald Hollow Mine, instead, you pick up your bucket from one of three sluiceways that comes directly from Hiddenite’s emerald mine. Your bucket might contain emeralds as well as amethyst, topaz, and aquamarine gems.
The Hiddenite Family Campground has partnered with Emerald Hollow Mine to provide accommodation to visitors who will be able to hike and explore the surrounding areas.
The Crater of Diamonds Park State Park located in Murfeesboro, Arkansas is the only public place in the world where you are allowed to dig for diamonds. You can rent tools or bring your own. Other than diamonds, you can also discover over 40 different types of rocks, minerals, and other interesting finds. Crater of Diamonds State Park also offer camping facilities, nature hikes, and fishing.
The Royal Peacock Mine in Virgin Valley, Nevada has some of the most beautiful black fire opals in North America. Depending on your budget, you can choose to dig within the bank area with the highest concentration of fire opals at a cost of $190 a day, or for $75 a day you can dig the mine’s dumps and tailings instead. The Royal Peacock Mine is only open from May 15 to October 15 every year. They have a fully-loaded RV park and additional lodging, so book early and stock up on supplies as the nearest store is 100 miles away.
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