Friday, May 29, 2009

No lettuce salad

I used the leftover couscous from the stir fry we had on salad night to make this salad. I cut off the corn kernals from one cob we had leftover, added chopped up artichoke hearts (from a can), a can of mixed beans and chopped up an avocado. For the dressing I used olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt pepper and chilli peppers to give it a kick! This is a good side salad! It also made lots, so we will likely eat it for 3 days!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Salad of the Week?

First off, my goal for the last little while has been to write at least one blog entry in between my salad of the week entries and this is the first week where that hasn't happened. But it was a very busy week - more on that when my week ends!

As for the salad, well, due to my busy week I didn't get the groceries I needed and couldn't find a NO lettuce salad that I liked, since I had no lettuce, therefore this weeks salad turned into a stir fry and this turns into a run on sentence. More specifically I made a lemon chicken stir fry (from a mix, yes very creative of me). Even though it was not creative, it was different for us. I used cauliflower, sugar snap peas, celery and red and yellow peppers. We had this on a bed of couscous and my goal for tomorrow is to use the leftover couscous to make a NO lettuce salad!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Salad of the Week

Today's salad was inspired by my MOM - love you mom! She has hopped on the Salad a Week bandwagon and is also making a different salad each week. She is making different salads than me though, so now she sends me her recent recipe and then if it looks good I can try it out.
Today's salad has a base of mixed greens with layered slices of pear and strawberries. Add to this chunks of barbecued chicken and brie cheese (could use goat or blue?). Mom's recipe used carmelized pecans, but we didn't have any pecans, so I used some cinnamon almond slices that I had pre-bought at Farmboy. I used a maple mustard salad dressing and Jay used a raspberry vinagrette! We both loved the salad.
If you want to make Candied pecans, here are the directions. Great on any salad -
Candied pecans
1/3 cup pecans
3 tbsp icing sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp allspice
1/8 tsp nutmeg
(these are basically pumpkin pie spice if you have that)
Rinse pecans with cold water, drain.
Combine sugar and spice and dip the pecans in this mixture to coat
Spread on baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes at 350 degrees or saute in pan if you can stir and watch them carefully! COOL

Monday, May 18, 2009

Sleepover Party - woo, hoo!

This is Jasmine posing with her sleeover party cake. She wanted kids in sleeping bags. I made a big one for her and then made individual loaf cakes for each of the kids to look like them (well, sorta like them). The candy stick was the big hit *note to self: always incorporate a lollipop on the cake - smashing success! Devin's mini cake is the one on the right with the short, spikey hair.

Jasmine waited by the door for her friends to arrive about 20 minutes early. We bought these "Charmed and Dangereous" dolls from our babysitter across the street in the garage sale they had last week. It was like a sign as there was one for each kid! So, Jasmine had them all lined up holding hands and when her friends arrived, they got to pick the one they wanted to keep!

For supper, we kept it simple and enjoyed Pizza Hut! They watched My Little Pony and ate pizza for almost an hour, LUVed it!

After we had a refill of energy from supper and cake, we played party games. Jasmine had wanted to play "sleeping bag, sleeping bag, pyjamas", a game she invented... basically duck, duck, goose! The kids ran chased each other for 15 minutes and laughed hysterically. Devin just kept running and running and running and running and the girls thought this was too funny!

I of course had them pose many times for pictures and most of the time I couldn't get them all smiling or being serious, but there were a few good ones.

After some games of freeze dance and hide and go seek, we were ready for bed. Time to get in jammies, brush teeth and hair. Most important, all the stuffed animals, hankies, blankies and even lizards - woah!

These girls had such a blast! Next time I think I will just get them ready for bed right after supper and let them just have a ball in the bedroom in their jammies! I think I might also tape all the curtains shut and throw towels over the top of the curtains, so they didn't wake up with the sun 5:30 a.m. - ugh! They played in the room until 6:45, so it wasn't so bad for the grown ups!

After a breakfast of banana chocolate chip pancakes, we started with the spa treatment. Including foot baths, hair curling, make up application, nails painted and for some even face masks.

Give it a few more years and Devin will be paying to lay across the girls laps like that - ha! He fit right in and had a good time with all the girls. He of course had to have his nails and make up done as well! A fun time had by all! Today we are recuperating and catching up on sleep!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

What a kid!

I came up to bed last night, checked on Jasmine and all was well. Got to Devin's room and found this outside his door.
It's Devin's potty, including pee, from the potty he has in his room. He has placed it outside his door on top of the diaper genie - good thing he didn't drop it!
This is a clear indication that he must have NO diaper on.

Next, I step over the gate to find his pyjama's laying on the floor, so I know in fact he will have no clothes on at all.

As I try to figure out where his head is I realize that, he is in fact not in bed at all! Where has the little guy fallen asleep?

This is the rocking chair in Devin's bedroom. With proper placement of his stuffed hippo, I could take a picture to share with all of you! This was just too funny!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Salad of the Week

Another hit from the Company's Coming Salad Recipe collection. My mom tested this one out first and said it was a keeper - we agree! It is the Spinach Pasta Salad on page 82. It's sooo good, that I am even going to type it out for you to try!

Step 1: In a ziploc bag marinate 1/2 lb. chicken breasts in lemon juice (2 tbsp), olive oil (1 tbsp)and 2 cloves minced garlic.

Step 2: Boil water for noodles to cook.

Step 3: Prepare rest of salad - add to bowl: 4 cups spinach, 2 chopped tomatoes, 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese and 1/3 cup black olives.

Step 4: Prepare dressing - 1/2 cup fresh parsley (I used dried - for shame), 1/3 cup parmesan cheese, 1/3 cup olive oil, 1/4 cup red wine vinegar, 2 minced garlic cloves, salt and pepper to taste, plus 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts. (It tells you to blender this all, but I didn't and liked it that way)

Step 5: Cook the pasta and BBQ the chicken.

Step 6: Add pasta and chicken to rest of salad and mix well with the dressing.

Feeds 6! Very yummy! Fed kids the chicken, the plain noodles and some raw veggies before I mixed it all together!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

To my Mom on Mother's Day!

Dear Mom,

I can't honestly think of where to start! You know I have a terrible long term memory, heck, even my short term memory is not great. I don't remember most of what you did for me as a child, but now as a parent myself, I can fully appreciate all that you must of done. I may not remember everything, but here is what I do know:

I started my life on a lucky day (Friday 13th in fact) and was blessed to be born to a mom with tremendous strength, who also happened to have great doctors and made sure that both her and I survived a very scary situation (for those of you reading, I was born with shoulder dystocia).

My mom always took great care of me when I was sick, from when I had a fever as a child and had to be rushed to the hospital, to lasering my ankle when I broke it, to leaving work to take care of me when I had mono at University, to rubbing Sunbreeze on my back when it aches and of course coming to take care of us after my c-section. She certainly shows her love in how well she takes care of you. I always want my mommy when I am sick and lucky her, she is the first person I still call to whine when I am sick!

My mom is full of great skill. Not only does she have this incredible brain that remembers almost everything from one read, but over the years she has developed many useful skills. As a child she sewed us numerous outfits including some lovely one piece jumpsuits (my grade 7 photo shows proof of that) and I recall a picture of all 3 of us kids wearing culottes that mom had sewn as well. Nowadays she keeps herself busy sewing jammies and matching fleece jackets for the grandkids, and best of all... curtains. If the curtain in my house is stylish - then she made it! Sewing is only one of her many talents, another talent I wished I had inherited was jarring, whether it be pickles, pickled beans or crab apple jelly, she makes the best canned goods. There were some things she wasn't necessarily skilled at, but that didn't stop her from trying. For example mom helped coach my ball team one summer. Or how about the fact that she tried water skiing to encourage me to try (she ended up with a massive bruise on her leg for her efforts and of course at the time I was clueless of her intentions, but years later when I heard the story, I couldn't help but feel touched).

After all these years and my mom taking great care of me (and my sisters, and our husbands and our kids and even in my sisters' case their dog or cat), I think what I like most about my mom is simply that when I need her I can count on her to be there. She always listens, doesn't hesitate to give her opinion, in fact she will just interrupt and blurt it out, no issues with the truth this one! (And yes, I did inherit that!). I can call her up day or night, send an email, a video, an MSN chat and I know she will get back to me and quick! She'll send me photos to show me what I am missing out on and feel part of the family and sends care packages (chiropractic balloons and Advil samples) to let us know she is thinking of us.

What makes me happy when I think of my mom, is that I know she is happy. Her and my dad have built a wonderful life for themselves and it is very encouraging. I hope when I am their age, that I have it all just like they do. They enjoy their work, don't work toooo hard, have lots of time for family and friends (and have lots of good friends), travel and go on adventures together and well, they just share their happiness with everyone they meet.

So mom, even though I am not there on Mother's Day to give you a big hug and kiss in person, and thank you for all that you have done and continue to do, know that I wish I could be there. I have bought a few little gifts for you, but am waiting for 1 little item I ordered (well... and I am reading the book I am sending for dad for Father's Day before I send it, ha, ha!)

For now, enjoy a trip down memory lane with a few pictures.

Love you mom,


Friday, May 8, 2009

7 unknown, but awesome facts about me!

I seen this on Loukia's blog and just had to try it! I am not convinced I can come up with 7 awesome facts that people don't know about me, but here goes.

1) I would like a tattoo, but when Jay and I went to look at them we couldn't decide what we wanted and eventually gave up :(

2) My next door neighbour in dorm one year was a sex addict and could have multiple orgasms and... well, quite frankly, I just want to know how you do that.

3) I have never tried drugs, but when one of my friends from work told me about her experieces with marijuana, I was sort of interested to try... but I'm too chicken shit! I seriously think something bad could happen to me.

4) Yesterday a student in my grade 5 class told me that I am her favorite teacher ever and that because of me she now loves to read. That is awesome!

5) The best concert I have been to was the Beach Boys, sang and danced the whole time with my mom and dad - an absolute blast! Runner up concert, believe it or not.... The Wiggles - I sang and danced through that whole concert, too! So sad!

6) In 6 years time, I could be teaching Jasmine in a classroom with all her... not so little friends - crazy thought. Right now, she actually can't wait until I am her teacher - we'll see how long that lasts!

7) I love and respect both of my sisters crazy amounts! They are truly incredible moms and great wives, and they are both skinny - damn them! You are an awesome and inspiring part of my life, but I am sure everyone already knows that!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Time to see who is reading!

Leave a joke in the comment box! I want to know what you think is funny! Jay and I are having differing opinions on what is actually humorous!

Salad of the Week

Pizza Salad! My husband's suggestion. Next time I will ask for instructions, because the first thing he said when he got home was, "maybe next time we could try cooking the pepperoni?" I guess another pizza salad night is in our future, anyhow... this one was quite good. Romaine lettuce base, mushrooms, tomato, orange pepper, ham, turkey pepperoni and pancetta pieces with grated mozza sprinkled on top.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

You can dress 'em up, but...

My mom and dad have been visiting for the last week and NO we aren't ready to get rid of them yet. In fact, we have a whole list of things that still need to be fixed around here. It has been great, well more than great, having my dad around to help work on the deck, but because they are always working on the deck, nothing else around here got fixed! Yes, this means our house will slowly fall apart over the next year.... actually it already started, this morning we found a wet spot in the ceiling of the basement - another leaky toilet! This house has a history, we fix one thing and something else breaks.... Murphy's Law I guess!
Mom has been a great help taking care of the kids, cooking meals and the BEST at cleaning the kitchen, I could really hire that job out, it is so nice not to have to always clean up after supper - what a difference that job makes! We did everything that was on our list to do while they were here, tackling the deck being the big one, but we also went to the pool for a swim, gramma read books to the kids on the top bunk and taught Jasmine how to sew by making a sleeping bag for her "BEARY". They went for a real adventure to Andrew Haydon Park where the kids walked over a mile and finished off with Dairy Queen. We went out for a "grown up" supper, the pictures can show you just how grown up it was, too funny! We ate at D'arcy McGee's Irish Pub upon dad's request. After putting them both to work all week, they treated us to supper - thanks mom and dad!