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Parakeets on steroids? Hawaii, Home and Heritage

16 Jul

This past January Randy and I flew to Hawaii to celebrate our 40th wedding anniversary! We traveled with Agri-Talk host Mike Adams and his sweet wife Patty and 45 other farmers from all over the Midwest. Our fearless guide was Dave Lien, manager at Holiday Vacations and he made sure our trip was a once-in-a lifetime experience!

Our bus driver must have had a momentary memory loss of just who he was transporting from the airport to the seaside resort hidden behind the lush gardens and palms on the island of Kauai. Or maybe he just got caught up in his stories about Jurassic Park and Pirates of the Caribbean filmed on the island. (Yep, Captain Jack LIED about that too—the movie was NOT filmed in the Caribbean. At least part of it was filmed in the Pacific and on the island of Kauai.) Anyway, somewhere along a stretch of highway that led from the canyons of Kauai to the seashore, our driver explained why we were seeing Bantam hens, chicks and roosters strutting here and there along the road. (They even strutted by our table while we dined at a lovely plantation restaurant AND right through the pool and patio area of the plush resort where we were staying. A 4:00 a.m. wake-up CROW below the balcony from our room made us feel right at home! (The fowl running free are the result of the survivors from a devastating hurricane that swept through the island in the 1990’s.) The folks watching me photograph Banty roosters would have chuckled if they had known I have a flock of Bantams, Barred Rock and Buff  Orpingtons back in Missouri.

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Back to my story-

Our guide, a friendly entertaining native of Hawaii made an offhand remark that caused every seed and implement cap bearing head to turn from watching for whales in the sparkling sea waters outside our tour bus windows to glare at the innocent bus driver.

“What did he just say?” every farmer leaned toward his spouse cuddled close in the narrow seats.

(Of course, every tractor-driving farmer has experienced some degree of hearing loss.)

“He said, ‘Those GMO seeds that seed companies develop in Hawaii are pumped full of steroids and now we have HUGE parakeets in Hawaii.’”

We never saw ANY parakeets in Hawaii.

There were, however, two smart-aleck parrots at our Maui resort…and a beautiful whale I named “Dolly”.

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I was proud of our farmers. They used the common sense that comes from years of patiently waiting to plant, cultivate, and harvest productive crops despite adverse conditions. These farmers allowed one spokesman for the group to privately correct the misguided driver and give him the true facts about GMO seed.

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GMO SEED IS NOT A NEW INNOVATION! Native Americans were genetically modifying seeds 2000 years ago when they selected the best seed from their crops of maize and held it back as seed for the next year’s crop.

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Fortunately, today’s scientist have developed seeds that produce stronger plants, better able to withstand adverse conditions. The American farmer was able to feed America AND people all over the world despite the severe drought conditions last year across the corn belt because of genetically modified seed (GMO) and better farming practices that include no-till or minimum tillage and soil conservation and improvement and, of course, the blessings of our Creator and Sustainer, our Father in Heaven.

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Researchers and doctors have searched and searched for any adverse effects in humans as a result of GMO seed. None have been found. After 2000 years of using GMO seed there are no health issues or concerns that can be linked factually to this scientific advancement. As always, we encourage you to examine what some doctors and several media outlets try to persuade you of.

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If you have been living in fear of GMO’s,  today is your day to break free of that fear and enjoy these yummy recipes! 

Ryan Edward’s mother makes an amazing Corn Dip that you will love to take on picnics and family reunions.

  • 1 (12 oz.) can Mexican corn
  • 1 (12 oz. ) can Shoe peg corn
  • ½ C mayonnaise
  • ½ C sour cream
  • 2 C shredded cheese
  • 1 bunch of green onions, chopped
  • Dash of Worcestershire sauce
  • Salt and pepper
  • Dash of garlic

Mix together and enjoy with crackers, chips or veggies.

(I used fresh corn and veggies because that is what I had on hand and it tasted great.)

Weightwatchers Greek-Style Cheeseburger

  • 1 lb uncooked lean ground beef
  • ½ tsp crushed dried oregano
  • ¼ tsp table salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • 1 medium garlic clove, minced
  • ¼ cup minced uncooked onion
  • 5 tsp crumbled feta cheese

I mixed this together, made it into patties and grilled them for our supper. Serve on light hamburger buns topped with fresh baby spinach leaves.

Yum!!

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