So I am currently awaiting shipment on a lighted magnifier from the folks at Radio Shack:
This will allow me to properly inspect the trichomes on the buds to gauge their level of maturity -- I can see that the all appear cloudy on the top of the plant, with the stigmas all turned a beautiful shade of red, but plant #2 the tric's still look clear and the stigmas are mostly light in color. The recommended magnification is 30x, this unit cost me 12 bucks plus 6 bucks shipping (natch). You can use a jeweler's loupe as well, I recommend looking online rather than checking in shops, it's still a hard to find item.
Here's a good idea of where to look to determine the harvestibility of your stuff:
and this is something that turned up after a quick search on hot girl weed, the classic smoking through an apple move, which in my mind is the pinnacle of ingenuity -- well as far as pot smoking tech goes.
Don't forget to eat it!