Tag Archives: cooking

Taking Stock No.4

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Enjoying a walk through some of Old Quebec’s beautiful, narrow streets.

Hi folks,

As you have probably noticed, I’ve been out of the look since I last wrote to you about our woes with our new downstairs neighbors. They have not gone away and neither has the mental exhaustion caused by the situation. Many times over the pas few months I have found myself dreaming of packing up and moving to an isolated corner of anywhere but here. It would be quite easy to do and no one would ever find me. My name is so common that I wouldn’t even have to change it in order to never be found, even by the aforementioned pesky neighbors should they decide to attempt to hunt me down. That would be a cowardly thing to do though and highly inconvenient for My Darling who is quite attached to his job and his family (it’s not that I’m not attached to my folks, we’re just not even nearly as tight-knit as My Darling’s family is). He did, however, manage to whisk me away to Quebec City with him for a few days when he went there to attend a conference at the beginning of the month, which did me a great deal of good and allowed me to get my creative juices flowing. Then, when we got back, miracle of miracles, Spring appeared and I have been able to spend increasing amounts of time outside. The leaves are all out, the flowers are blooming, I planted my flowers and bought our strawberry plant and I am looking slightly less pasty. Phew…the work downstairs should finally be done next week, which is an excellent thing because I am becoming less and less tolerant of the group of loud, cigarette smoking, belching, cursing men who show up every morning at 7:00 and are present until the end of the afternoon. I want my quiet home back, I to not have to worry about parking in my own driveway for fear of puncturing my tires on a nail or being trapped in my parking space by a delivery of sheet rock or some worker’s pickup truck. For crying out loud, we found a worker’s discarded t-shirt in our parking space this morning! Ugh…Anyhow, I thought one of my ‘Taking Stock’ posts would be a good way for us to catch up and hopefully I will be able to get my creative juices flowing freely enough once things calm down to come back with another post soon. In the mean time though, you can head over to my photography blog Old Orchard Photography for more about my trip to Quebec and to see a few more of the photos I took there.

Enjoying: being able to walk out the door without having to pile on more layers than an onion.
Listening: to The Merry Widow on CBC Radio 2.
Wearing: my GAP striped sundress. I bought it at an outlet store in Las Vegas last Spring and it is my go-to dress as soon as the warm weather rolls around. It is just as comfy as a pair of pajamas, but completely appropriate to wear out around town as well!

Making: time for myself.

Cooking: Korean burgers for My Darling and his friend when they get back from their bike ride.
Drinking: Iced tea made with our Fortnum and Mason teas. We just emptied our jug of Irish Breakfast and I’m going to ice some Countess Grey next.
Feeling: relieved that the renovations downstairs are finally almost finished.
Reading: ‘Her Majesty: 60 Regal Years’ by Brian Hoey, the first biography of The Queen I have ever read and I am thoroughly enjoying it. I have also recently torn through Elizabeth Gilbert’s ‘Big Magic’ as I mentioned in my previous post and Camilla Gibb’s ‘This is Happy’ which I highly recommend.

Looking: forward to my vacation in Poland with My Darling next month.
Wishing: we still had a deaf lady in her 70s for a downstairs neighbor. Boy, do we ever miss Mrs. L.
Liking: eating breakfast with My Darling on the back terrace under our red parasol on weekends.
Waiting: for the next bunch of strawberries growing on our plant to ripen.

Snacking: on dark chocolate raspberry Lärabars
Coveting: some Prince Edward Island therapy. I would wish for August to come quickly, but I want Summer to drag on for ages!
Hearing: no construction noise, praise God.
Learning: to not let myself be intimidated by bullies.

Loving: how My Darling has been perking up since he has been able to take his bike out for long rides again.
Watching: not much, really! It’s been far too nice out to watch TV.
Admiring: nature, it’s amazing how quickly things start growing and blooming when the warm weather finally settles in!
Getting: ready to make my first batch of homemade ice cream of the season! It’s going to be matcha, made with this recipe

Wondering: when I’ll have time to go shopping before our vacation.
Playing: piano when I can, which is not often. Racket downstairs = not conducive to learning a new instrument.
Noticing: how badly I needed my week off two weeks ago to ground myself.
Giggling: over My Darling’s waddle when he walks around in his cycling shoes.

Bookmarking: by folding the corners of the pages of the books I read. I don’t spend enough time online to bookmark sites lol
Deciding: on where we’re going to stay in Warsaw.
Hoping: for less drama in my life
Contemplating: jogging with a group of our local Running Room store when we get back from vacation.

Wanting: a new pair of running capris, I noticed several holes in my favorite pair when I got in from my jog on Thursday…
Thinking: about my dad a lot recently and how happy I am that the lupins I planted in front of his grave three years ago are finally going to flower!
Knowing: that my father would be proud of how I’ve handled the difficult situation with our new neighbors so far.
Opening: my heart to as much kindness from others as I can in order to heal myself from the unkindness I have suffered recently.

Feeling: energized and positive for the first time in months.
Marveling: at how warm, sunny weather can help turn peoples moods around within a matter of days.

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Notre-Dame-des-Victoires (Our Lady of Victories) church in Old Quebec
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Taking Stock No.3

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A partial view of the Cloud Gate and downtown Chicago

Hello everyone!

As you know, I enjoy doing these taking stock posts four times per year, it is a practice I picked up from fellow blogger Ashley over at Sed Bona. This will be my third post of this kind and I really look forward to doing them! Fell free to do some taking stock of your own and if you do, please let me know!

Enjoying: going over and over all the photos I took during My Darling and I’s little four day trip to Chicago last week! I’ve included two of them in this post and if you want to see more of them, go check out my photography blog and feel free to give it a like and a follow!
Listening: to Schubert’s Symphony No.8 in B Minor.
Wearing: my incredibly comfy Wilfred Free top, it’s just like PJs without being PJs, you can see a selection of Wilfred Free tops here.
Making: another scarf for myself. It’s slow going, but I will have it done by next winter!
Cooking: a chocolate orange cake for dessert with some friends tomorrow, recipe here.
Drinking: protein packed smoothies for lunch.
Feeling: better than I have since January, finally!!!
Reading: The Art of Hearing Heartbeats by Jan-Philipp Sendker
Looking: for a blue clutch. I have nothing but black clutches and I would love to have a more cheerfully colored one.
Wishing: my IT band would stop acting up so I can get back to running.
Liking: how much stronger the sun is getting, it’s putting a bit of warmth into our Winter Days!
Waiting: for 19-2 to start up again, it’s one of our favorite TV shows and we miss it!
Snacking: on Chèbrie in other words Brie made with goat’s milk 🙂 Sorry, dear American readers, but you can’t have any! I’ll get arrested if I try to send you some, I kid you not!
Coveting: A Kitchenaid stand mixer and have been for ages!
Hearing: the soothing, bubbling sound of water spilling out of my aquarium’s filter into the tank.
Learning: to play the piano thanks to My Darling.
Loving: Google Play, all the music ever created is at my fingertips and the lion’s share of it is completely free!
Watching: David Starkey’s Music and Monarchy on YouTube, because I can’t get it anywhere else unfortunately.
Admiring: My Darling’s efforts to better balance his personal and work life.
Getting: nervous about all the renovations our neighbors want to do, noise and dust! Joy!
Wondering: when and where we are going to take our Summer vacation.
Playing: Piano Tiles 2, it is ridiculously addictive.
Noticing: that Quinn is getting cuddly in her old age!
Giggling: over Quinn chasing a bug.
Bookmarking: nothing lately.
Deciding: where to hang the painting My Darling got me for my birthday. He says bedroom, I say dining room.
Hoping: that my cake is going to taste as good as it smells!
Contemplating: ways to make a bit of extra money through my photography.
Wanting: the freezing rain to stop falling outside before the city ends up looking like this again:

Montreal during the ice storm of 1998, image credit: CBC news

Thinking: I’m ready for dinner.
Knowing: my dinner will not make itself and delivery is not an option in this weather!
Opening: a bottle of wine so I can enjoy a glass or two while waiting for My Darling to come home from his conference.
Feeling: very accomplished, it has been a productive day!
Marveling: at how much more in control and organized I have been feeling lately.

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The stunning Tiffany glass dome in the Chicago Cultural Center

My grandfather’s tree and some favorites

Good news everyone: my darling and I walked past my Grandfather’s maple tree (that’s how I’ve come to think of it) yesterday and it is still standing! I’m hoping this means that the arborist who was supposed to give a second opinion declared that the old fellow is well enough to be saved, because another very large, old, Silver Maple around the corner from my grandfather’s tree was cut down just a few days ago and Grandpa’s tree is still standing. At least when the city must take down such ancient, stately trees, they leave posters tacked to the trunk of the tree explaining why the tree had to be cut down and evidence of the tree’s illness so locals aren’t left wondering why their much loved trees have been felled. and at least if my Grandfather’s tree does end up being cut down in the near future, I was able to take a series of photos of it, of which I am happy to chare a few.

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The bottom of Old Orchard Avenue with my Grandfather’s tree on the right.
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A closeup of my Grandfather’s tree that give you an idea of just how wide its trunk is.

On another note, it has been ages since I’ve shared any of my favorites with you. I just haven’t felt up to it and haven’t had the time, but I have a few gems for you today, name this adorable counter vacuum which can be found at Zone stores here in Montreal.

Isn’t he just the cutest thing you’ve ever seen??? My brother and his wife had one just like him and I had been coveting one for at least a year but my Darling felt that ia counter vacuum was a useless gadget that would do nothing but take up valuable counter space. First of all, he clearly has no concept of how many little crumbs can be created while cooking and second of all, we have such a massive kitchen counter that we would need dozens of these little vacuums to fill it up. After my Darling was forced to go into the office for the second Saturday in a row last weeked I was feeling pretty down, so I detoured by Zone after buying some groceries and picked up my very own little mouse vacuum. He is quiet, efficient and elicited some grumbling from my Darling. I told him that if he really hadn’t wanted to end up with a kitchen counter vacuum, he simply should not have gotten himself called into work so that I would not have needed cheering up. I named my little mouse friend Brie and he has already made himself more than useful. If you’re like me and love cooking but hate having to sponge down your counter after spilling a bit of flour or other miscellaneous kitchen crumbs on it every time you cook, you should really look into getting one of these little guys. They also come in ladybug format and are about the size of a standard computer mouse.

Another one of my current favorites is a wonderful classical music album which is perfect for chasing away the Winter Blues: Vivaldi’s Four Seasons recomposed by Max Richter.

 

Richter takes the much-loved favourite and tweaks it just enough to give it a contemporary feel but best of all, there are long recordings of bees, blowing wind, bubbling brooks and birdsong so that you can very easily imagine yourself in the middle of a beautiful, lush, green field surrounded by early Spring wildlfowers. Absolute, pure bliss when you are in the dead of Winter and I find that it is an even more effective pick-me-up in February when I begin to feel that Spring is getting close but is still annoyingly out of reach.

And finally, if you are looking for a nice, light read that will have you giggling out loud, I just started reading the absolutely delightful ‘A Night In with Audrey Hepburn’ by Lucy Holliday.

The link above will send you to the Chapters/Indigo Books website for my Canadian readers,  but the book can be found at any bookshop and is so worth it if you are looking for some very easy laughs, but be aware that you will laugh out loud while reading this book. I kept having to relate the funny bits to my Darling yesterday while we were reading on the couch together, so be prepared to explain your fits of giggles to anyone you are reading around!

Reading and cooking

Dalvay Beach, PEI
Dalvay Beach, PEI

So, when a girl who loves to read goes on a two-week beach holiday, she is most definitely going to use all of her free time to enjoy some books! She is also more than likely going to end up with a rather uneven tan, because it is for more comfortable to read lying on ones stomach than on ones back when on the beach!

Now,what did I read while enjoying such lovely beaches as Dalvay, pictured above? I finished Jacqueline Park’s ‘The Secret Book of Grazia Dei Rossi’, which, as I mentioned in an earlier post, was delightful, and I then went on to read M. L. Stedman’s ‘The Light Between Oceans’, which was also excellent. I very rarely cry over books, but I cried near the end of this one and it brought out many other emotions as well. I highly recommend it, but be ready to do some serious thinking on the issues it brings up!

As far as cooking and baking go, I’ve been pretty busy since I got back and have been thoroughly enjoying have a full-sized kitchen again! Our cottage on PEI was marvelously well-equipped as far as cottages go, but I was working with about one-third of the counter space I have at home! Suffice it to say that I wasn’t able to make anything too elaborate while we were away, so as so when we got home I was more than ready for a challenge and started off by making these sausage and ricotta stuffed shells, which are baked on a bed of pureed butternut squash. They were oh, so delicious and my Darling had some jealous colleagues when he brought some leftovers for his lunch at work! One thing though: you do not need one pound of shells, or at least I sure didn’t! Half a pound would have been fine with the size of the jumbo shells I had on hand, I made the stuffed shells last week and we just polished off the leftover pasta that I wasn’t able to stuff. Also, it is very easy to shake up this recipe just by varying the types of sausages you us. I stuffed them with mil Italian sausages this time, but next time I will use another type. Make sure they are the uncooked variety though, because you have to be able to split open the sausage casings and remove the meat in order to brown it and add it to the stuffing!  Recipe credit goes to Rachel Schultz over at A Household Almanac for the recipe, which I found on Pinterest.

Another recipe I have enjoyed since coming home is Ashley’s matcha power smoothie bowl, a delightful green smoothie with an almond milk base! I love Ashley’s blog, Sed Bona, which is a lifestyle blog. She mostly blogs about fashion and Chicago restaurants which are a foodie’s dreams, but she also occasionally posts delicious recipes and this is one of them! This matcha smoothie comes out very thick, which is why Ashley specifies it is meant to be enjoyed in a bowl, but it is very easy to thin it out a bit by adding a bit more almond milk. A few other tweaks I gave the recipe included the use sunflower seed butter instead of peanut butter, since that is what we had on hand and instead of using plain almond milk, I used vanilla almond milk since, once again, that is what we had on hand. I think it would be best to use flavored almond milk in this recipe regardless though, since it adds a bit of sweetness.

There you have it! I’ll be back soon with more pictures and posts about our Prince Edward Island vacation!

The Sweetness of Summer

Hello everyone!

As promised, I’d back, although a bit later than I thought I would be. Life has been so hectic lately! My Darling was out-of-town for five days last week and I was sure I would have time to get a second post in, but things just didn’t turn out that way, mostly because I ended up being called into work more than I thought I would, but also because we had our go-to general contractor in redoing the closets in our two bedrooms (one of which is currently being used as a library since we have no need for a second bedroom at this point!) and naturally, mayhem ensued. I just finished reorganizing everything in the new closets and our dresser today and the work has been complete since Monday!

Nevertheless, I have had some time to take a few pictures around our place! Our flower pots are doing wonderfully and I also purchased an organic strawberry plant for us from the Pure Horticulture stall at Atwater Market. I’m afraid they don’t have an English website, but if you go to ‘Où acheter’, you will be able to see where you can get some of their wonderful plants and products! Our strawberry plant only cost us 20$ and we are going to get way more than 20$ worth of deliciously juicy strawberries from it!

Our strawberry plant and front balcony flower pot.
Our strawberry plant and front balcony flower-pot.

Here’s a look at the flower-pot on our front porch:

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The flower-pot on our front porch.

I am so, so thrilled with how my flower pots are doing! They look exactly how I imagine they would! They have also been quite low maintenance so far since we have gotten plenty of rain since I planted them, I very rarely have to pull out the hose to water them. A lot of people have been complaining about the weather we’ve had since May, but I just love what it has been doing for my garden and flowers!

As for what I’ve been up to aside from working a few days a week and gardening, I’ve been keeping up with my jogging, cooking and reading! I had a bit of a setback with my running a few weeks ago however when I tried to stretch the lifespan of my running shoes a bit too much and ended up with an inflamed muscle in my thigh. Since I have begun running more seriously, I’ve worn Ecco Biom running shoes. The first pair was wonderful, but I felt that the second pair never were quite right for me. I got a lot of blisters from them and they didn’t quite have the cushioning I needed for all the hill work I’ve been doing. This time I wanted to make sure I got the right shoes for me, so I headed out to The Running Room and boy, are they amazing there! I left the shop with blister preventing socks and an amazing pair of Saucony running shoes that have made all the difference for me when I run. I can now comfortably run 10 kilometers and have lost 20 seconds on my running time! So, if you’re thinking of taking up running or are already a runner but have felt like you’ve been having trouble progressing, go to the Running room and talk to them about your running goals and see if you’ve been using the wrong shoes!

As far as cooking goes, I tried this wonderful recipe for one dish roast chicken legs with sweet tomatoes by Jamie Oliver and it turned out beautifully! I made it before heading out to the airport on Saturday evening to pick up my Darling and it stayed nice and warm in the over so all I had to do when we got home was throw some quinoa in our rice cooker and voilà! Dinner was ready a half hour after we walked through the front door!

In the reading department, I finished reading Erik Larson’s Dead Wake, a very well put together account of the sinking of the Lusitania during WWI and the events leading up to it, last week. It was the second time I read one of his books and I thoroughly recommend both Dead Wake and In the Garden of Beasts if you are a history aficionado. Larson’s books always take on an almost fictional narrative since focuses on a few historical and develops his books around them. It makes them much easier to read than most non-fiction volumes that can be a bit too academic at times.

After finishing Larson’s book, which was the last in the previous stack of books I had bought, I headed down to Indigo bookstore on Ste-Catherine and picked up three more books. I chose to start my Summer reading festival with Jacqueline Park’s ‘The Secret Book of Grazia dei Rossi’ and oh my, what a treat it has been to read so far! I highly recommend it if, like me, you enjoy historical fiction.

And now, my current favorites:

1-My new David’s Tea Travel mug! I bought it this week and it is amazing, it keeps my tea hot or cold for hours on end! I have been filling it with another favorite of mine

2- Iced Afternoon Blend tea from Fortnum and Mason, sweetened with pure maple syrup. How very Canadian of me, eh?

3- Reading, seriously. It has allowed me to keep my sanity lately with all the craziness going on in our life, that and jogging. Without reading and jogging, I think I would have lost it by now lol

Finally, here is a picture of our two fur babies, Quinn and Magique, doing what they do best: lounging around on the back of our living room couch! This is their favorite place to be in the afternoon since it is nice and sunny. They especially enjoy it once the warm weather returns since they get a very nice dose of fresh air from the door to the balcony and the windows.

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Quinn and Magique lounging in their favorite afternoon spot.

I’m back!

Well, hello there!

Sorry about the long dry spell between posts, but we were on vacation for a week at the beginning of the month (my last post actually went up the day before we left!) in Las Vegas and at the Grand Canyon and things have been nuts here since we got back! I just finally got through all of my vacation pictures and will write a separate post for them. The Grand Canyon was absolutely stunning and it would be a crime not to give it all the attention it deserves. As for Vegas, it was fun, but we are not gamblers (we spent all of 6$ in the casino at the last hotel we were in lol) so we had our fill of being in a heavy gambling environment by the time we left, but the shopping was great and the hotels there are seriously impressive in terms of size and amenities. It was also very easy to get some good food there and coming from me, that means a lot since I am a serious food and am known for not enjoying American food at all any place south of Massachusetts. I apologize to any Americans reading this, but I am not big on fried food at all and  there is also the fact that high fructose corn syrup makes me break out in itchy hives and you guys put a ton of the stuff in your food.

More about our vacation in another post though,  I’m here to update you on what I’ve been up to since we got home, which has been gardening and cooking!

I have also been keeping up with the growth of the buds on our maple tree and as I suspected, by the time we were back from our vacation two weeks ago, there were miniature leaves on the branches!

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Maple tree leaves first week of May
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Maple tree leaves first week of May

And this is what our lovely Sugar Maple looks like now, with its pretty much full-grown leaves, just one week later:

Maple tree leaves second week of may
Maple tree leaves the second week of may

This picture was taken from the same angle as the previous one, so you can see just what a difference a week can make, especially when a perfect combination of drop dead gorgeous weather and Spring showers are thrown into the mix.

The aforementioned perfect Spring weather also allowed me to get some gardening done! I am not an experienced gardener since our rambling old duplex is my first non-rental home. I have never before had any type of garden that I have had a free rein with, so I have been going at the gardening thing slow and steady. The first summer I was here I planted some lupine seeds that I brought home from a vacation to Prince Edward Island and courageously planted a lavender plant that I tried to keep in the house, but that Quinn kept eating. I squealed with excitement last Spring when the lavender survived the winter and the lupines grew. The lavender did wonderfully throughout the Summer, but a local cat began using the scraggly little cedar shrubs in our front garden as a urinal. The sturdiest lupines were unfortunately growing right in front of the shrubs and eventually lost their battle with the cat pee and I nearly cried. Before we left on vacation I yanked out the yucky, partially dead cedar shrubs (they liked the cat pee about as much as the lupines did, but had the advantage of being far less tiny, so were not completely dead) to make it clear to the cat that he would have to go and pee in someone else’s front garden and crossed my fingers hoping that the lupines would come back. Just like last year, the lavender woke up from its Winter hibernation and shortly thereafter, the lupines miraculously poked their way out of the ground. More gleeful hopping around ensued and my Darling gave me a goofy grin and shook his head at my enthusiasm.

Since I managed to keep my first plants alive for two seasons, I decided that it would be safe for me to spend some real money on more plants. I therefore headed out to Pépinière Jasmin, where my mother has been purchasing more of her gardening fare for years. It is also where the stunning St.Joseph’s Oratory buy their flowers, gardening tools and earth. I decided to plant all of my own flowers in my pots this year instead of buying the pépinière’s arrangements and I also bought a bleeding heart which I planted in our front garden where the cedars used to be. It was quite a job digging the hole for the bleeding heart and cutting through all the old cedar roots, but I did it on my own and was darn proud of myself for pulling it off! I did all of my shopping and planting last Thursday. There is no sign of last year’s offending feline as of yet.

One of my flower pots for the front of our house.
One of my flower pots for the front of our house.
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The bleeding heart in our front garden.
The flower pot for our front balcony.
The flower-pot for our front balcony.

I’ll post some more pictures of our flowers pots once they have grown in a bit, maybe in about a month.

Now, for my current favorites! As usual most of them are food related!

1- I tried my hand at making pickles the weekend we got back from vacation since they had some eight packs of Canadian greenhouse grown pickling cucumbers on sale at Provigo and Loblaws. I used this recipe from The Creekside Cook and they turned out pretty good, however I would suggest cutting the quantity of salt by a quarter to one half as my batch turned out a bit too salty. I poured some of the brine out and replaced it with water and the pickles tasted much better afterwards. They are still nice and crispy after a week in their jar.

2- I also decided to try making my own ice cream last Friday since my Darling owns an ice cream, sorbet and frozen yogurt machine and naturally brought it with him when we moved in together last year. I made a batch of this chocolate gelato as a surprise for him and oh, my goodness did we both ever gobble it up! We will never be buying ice cream at the grocery store again. You do not need to change a thing in this recipe, it is absolutely perfect. the only thing I will be doing any time I make it will be adding some cinnamon or cardamom to it for my own tasting pleasure.

3- Fortnum and Mason’s Chai tea made the traditional way with milk and one cube of raw cane sugar. You will never see Chai tea the same way again, I swear.

4-My LK Bennett Marlene Fitted Dress, which I splurged on in Las Vegas. We do not have LK Bennett stores, so I took the opportunity to shop at the one in Las Vegas and bought my first piece of their clothing. I am so, so glad I splurged. The dress fits my curves like a glove and I wore it for nearly twelve hours last Saturday to my future sister in law’s bridal shower and the ensuing drinks and dinner evening and still didn’t want to take it off. LK Bennett’s clothing is a bit on the pricey side, but they often have sales which are worth keeping an eye out for. Forget their shoes unless you have very narrow feet though. I can’t even fit my toes into most of their footwear.

5- This beautiful rendition of This is The Day the Lord Has Made by John Rutter. The most beautiful recording of it is by the choirs of Westminster Abbey and St. George’s Chapel from the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s wedding in 2011. It is totally worth a listen and a watch, I am often moved to tears and goosebumps by it This is the day John Rutter – YouTube.

There, I’m all caught up on the regular stuff! I’ll be back soon with my vacation post, including some favorites for anyone wanting to visit Vegas and the Grand Canyon!

Maple tree buds week three…and some more favorite recipes!

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Wow…I wasn’t sure I was going to make it on here this week, things have been so busy! I’m actually really impressed that I have the energy to put a post together today with all the running around I did, but here I am!

As you can see, there’s not too much difference between the buds on our tree this week compared to last week. That’s because there has really not been that much sun for the past week and a half, but I’m pretty much convinced that the next time I’m able to get a picture up, there will be some miniature leaves on our tree!

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On another note, no matter how busy I am I always make sure I have some time to cook and I therefore have two recipes to share with you this week!

I had one of my best friends over for brunch on Saturday and I made some very tasty waffles for us. It was my second time whipping up some waffles (my Darling is usually the waffle chef in this house) and I now have the recipe down pat! The waffles come out incredibly light and fluffy and never, ever stick to the iron without my having to put any kind of cooking spray in it, which is essential! Kudos to Stephanie at Somewhat Simple for the recipe 🙂

On Sunday I finally got around to making the cream of spinach soup I had been meaning to make since Thursday with some leftover spinach from another meal. It was my first time making any kind of soup with pureed potatoes being the main ingredient for thickening and oh my goodness, let me tell you it will not be the last! The result is wonderful and was undoubtedly particularly tasty in this case because I threw in some leftover barbecued potatoes from Tuesday night’s dinner and we could easily taste the hint of chipotle chili powder I had seasoned them with! The recipe I used is can be found here, but do note that I also added two small yellow onions into my soup to give it a bit more zing, I was afraid it might have tasted a bit bland otherwise. I also did not peel my potatoes and definitely do not hesitate to throw a dash of chipotle chili powder in, you will not regret it!