Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Sharing, Sharing, Sharing

Sacha has had a big week. The BC Teacher strike ended and Sacha officially started grade 1. The first week was spent with the new grade ones in the library while classes were sorted out. On Monday he got his new teacher and class. He's in with a bunch of his buddies from last year which is good and he's got a young teacher, whom I haven't actually met yet but I think she will be good.  The one close friend who got put in the other class goes to the same after school care so they get to play everyday after school. 

He had a great time at Scout Camp. It was at Camp Byng in Roberts Creek!  He ran around all weekend, "hunting" for bears and other adventures with some new buddies.  He even got a camp patch to sew onto his campfire blanket. 

Tonight he had his investment ceremony for Beavers. He had to say the motto, law and pledge while touching the scout flag. He received his official neckerchief and "woggle" to keep it in place and a handful of patches. He was incredibly squirmy for the whole meeting which was hard to watch and not interfere but he was hardly the only antsy one.  I had a front row view. I had my camera. I did not have a memory card. And I didn't even have a charged cellphone. Doh!  I was never a scout, so obviously I'm not always prepared. 

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Girls Only

Alice and I have had a fabulous girls' weekend. We went to the aquarium and didn't have to take turns deciding which exhibits to look at or get pulled away from the bats, just because we had ready been looking at them for 15 minutes.  We also had brunch on the patio at Milestones, which was Alice's choice. She was asking to go to Rockstones and it took me a couple tries to figure out where she really meant.  
Mmmm. Strawberry pancakes!

After lunch, we headed homewards and hung out on the beach down by the pier.  Alice dug in the sand and played with seaweed and even braved the chilly water. 

Today, we got dressed up in fancy dresses and high heels and met up with Baba for High Tea at the Secret Garden Tea Company.  Alice was so excited for the tea party all weekend. I'm not sure it was all she had in mind, more tea, less party but she behaved really well. I thought it was really good. I had the buckingham palace tea blend and Mum had the English breakfast. Alice had a cup of milk with a splash of tea and sugar until she just switched to straight milk. High tea included 3 kinds of mini sandwiches, scones and banana bread with Devonshire cream and jam and a couple more dessert bites including pecan pie square and lemon curd tart. It was all delicious!

It's nerve wracking being in charge of a 3 year old with fine china in her hands! 

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Cheesy Corn and Spaghetti Squash Casserole

photo (9)

Good thing squashes have a long shelf life.  I think I bought this one at least two weeks ago after seeing some pretty delicious looking recipes for spaghetti squash lasagna.  I picked up the sausages for dinner and didn’t feel like having a plate of spaghetti with meat sauce as well as sausages, so I came up with this recipe and it was delicious and gluten free!  Although the sausages were not but they were pretty good too.   I will definitely be making this one again. 

1 Spaghetti Squash
3 tbsp. olive oil
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 large onion, finely chopped
3 oz Goat Cheese
4 oz Sharp Cheddar
1/4 cup milk
1 kernels removed from 1 ear of corn
Salt and Pepper

1. Cut Spaghetti Squash lengthwise, scoop out seeds, brush with olive oil and season with Salt and Pepper.  Bake cut-side down on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper at 375 for 45 minutes.

2. Saute 2 cloves of minced garlic, and 1/2 of a finely chopped large onion in 2 tbsp of olive oil until translucent.  Add 3oz of goat cheese (I used Boursin), 2oz of shredded cheddar (I used white cheddar), 1/4 cup milk and one ear's worth of corn off the cob.  Cook until combined.

3. Shred Spaghetti Squash and remove from skin.  Place in casserole dish.  Stir in sauce.  Top with 2 oz of cheddar.  Season with Salt and pepper.

4. Return to oven and back for another 1/2 hour.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Summer Reading

I started off the summer reading up a storm. Andrew gave me a Kindle and I love it!  I also wanted to finish a couple regular books that I had bought long ago be never read. I'm terrible about doing that. I've now misplaced the one I was in the middle of, I think it must be with my old purse and banjo picks. 

I liked this book, it was funny but I've read a lot of books by non-professional authors lately and I am finding that I've been wanting to read books with a more literary feel.  

My boss gave me this book for my birthday which was very sweet of him. It's about a Mum and her son who live in Toronto and their birding adventures. It is memoir and she nailed a lot of birding idiosyncrasies which was cool. 

Another birthday book, Margot gave me this one. I read it quickly and then went to see the movie.  I like John Green books, even if they are teen lit. 

I loved this book, it is a dystopian future story where clones are used to harvest organs for transplant. It's creepy and thought provoking. 

This book was about a group of people that met in a special summer camp for gifted artistic teens and follows their lives into adulthood where some become rich and famous, some normal and some criminal.  It's about relationships and potential and jealously.  I enjoyed it but didn't love the ending and that the part that really sticks with me which is too bad. 

Friday, September 12, 2014

Extra Curriculars

The kids' fall activities have started up again. This season, Alice is taking ballet and Sacha is a beaver scout. Scouts actually goes all year long and his first camp out is next weekend! They jump right in. He doesn't have a uniform yet, I think he gets that at the next meeting. Alice loves ballet but also desperately wants to be in scouts too but is too young. The world opens up to five year olds (activity wise). 

I need to find a banjo teacher. I bought a banjo. I don't want to call it a whim. I'd been thinking it might be fun to learn to play for a couple of months but I had wanted to rent one. Unfortunately, they aren't to keen on renting the weirder instruments. So I bought it and was told I could bring it back in 30 days if I didn't like it. But I love it. Even if I don't play much, I think it's beautiful. I'd hang it on the wall like a piece of art.  I already know how to do forward rolls in G! 

I'm disappointed in myself though because I bought a new purse a couple of weeks ago and moved my most important things to the new bag. But I left my cheque book and banjo finger picks in my old bag and now I can't find the bag. It made paying for daycare interesting this month, I kept maxing out my daily atm limit. 

I just need to teach the kids how to play a jug, a wash board or spoons and we could have quite the little family band going. We will need to purchase a 1970s VW camper to roam the country side but I don't want to get ahead of myself. 

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Black Hole

I am determined not to let this blog die! After the road trip, we really didn't do much for about 2 weeks. The kids went back to daycare, I had the house cleaned and the carpets shampooed and promptly peed upon by Oliver.  Went birding a couple of times, went back to work, we all spent a weekend at Bowen and Siobhan, Colin and Adrian joined us one of the days. 

Then after 2 weeks of leisure, I switched gears into being so busy, I didn't have 15 minutes to up date anything.  On top of the regular start of the new school year craziness, I have taken on/been given major roles in two new projects at work. So it was even crazier than normal. 

I realized that I forgot to update that I did end up selling my house in Roberts in June. The tenants moved out on Labour Day so Andrew and I went up to the Sunshine Coast for the day and started going through boxes of stuff we had stored in the crawl space.  We had geared up for a long wait for the ferry home but ended up sqeaking on after only waiting in the terminal for 15 minutes. Pretty snazzy!

Mum took the kids to Bowen last weekend and Andrew and I were back up on the Coast. There were a couple loads of stuff to the dump, a truck load of items to donate and a truckload of items to bring home.  We spent the night at my aunt Sall's house and made sure we hit some nostalgic spots, chilli cheese fries at Molly's Reach in Ginsons is a must!

I was sad to say goodbye to the house, but ultimately relieved that I don't have to manage two households. 

I have chosen to be happy to have lived there, not sad that I had to say goodbye. I will miss the ferry line ups least of all!

Sunday, August 17, 2014

The Final Leg

Day 6

Barkerville, the historic gold rush town, was our first stop of the day.   It is really cool but so remote.  Sacha, who loves museums was in a grumpy mood when we got there and took a while for him to warm up to it but once we hit the general store and picked up a couple pieces of liquorice for the kids and soap candies for me, moods improved all around.   It was our first really rainy morning and it was not crowded at all.  We took the stage coach ride and panned for gold.   We found 6 flakes the size of salt crystals, Sacha was slightly disappointed, he was hoping for a golf ball sized nugget.  I also purchased their authentic sour dough recipe to take home.


After Barkerville, we stopped at another historic house, Cottonwood House for lunch.  It was on the road to Barkerville.  They had some good soup and scones.

Then it was on to Horsefly to visit our friend Marc and his 4 month old chocolate lab puppy named Charlie.


Day 7

So it was kind of crazy to plan a trip with two kids under 7 that only had one non-driving day but I would say they did really well considering.  And if they don’t know any different (all people travel like this as far as they know), then they don’t expect anything different.

We spent the day playing in the tall grass and picking wild flowers  in the fields around Marc’s house, and briefly touring the town; it is about 3 blocks in total.   Marc had signed up Andrew and himself for a horseshoe tournament at the pub in the afternoon, so I took the kids to swim in Horsefly lake.  I think it was the first time either one of them had swam in fresh water and it was very pleasant.  Not too cold and fun to watch baby trout swimming around. 

It was very nice to have a day to relax and hang out, I even got another new bird, the hammond’s flycatcher and saw a merlin.


Day 8

Home again, home again, jiggedy jig.  We took the Fraser Canyon route home.  We were pretty tired so we debated about finding a lake to stop and take a quick swim but we decided to press on home instead. 

It was a really great trip and I would definitely do something similar again.  Ideally giving ourselves a bit more time so we didn’t have such long driving days. 


This map says the drive was 11 hours, but that is not even close.  It is more like 6, we stopped for lunch in Cache Creek in a sit down restaurant and stopped for gas and it wasn’t anywhere close to 11 hours.