Monday, October 20, 2014

Denise The Menace

I know Sacha was the exact same way when he was the same age, but I thought girls were supposed to be easier until their tween years. 

This weekend, Alice climbed behind a dresser in my room and drew a great big mural on the wall with a red crayon.  She got stung by stinging nettles 3 times on a hike we took on Sunday because she refused to stay on the path.  She took Popsicles out of the deep freeze and didn't close the lid. Again. Luckily I found it before the whole thing thawed. Unlike last time.  She fell asleep in Sacha's laundry chair because her bed was too full of picture frames. 

I just checked tonight and she's in the chair again tonight. No more picture frames so it must just be a preference. The pribalem is that it's not so comfy at 3am when she wakes up and finds her way into my bed. 

I'd say this wasn't even a particularly devilish weekend either. 

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Gobble Gobble

A long weekend crammed full of activities doesn't feel much like a long weekend. On Satutday, Sacha had a scouts event called Hug a Tree. They learned how not to get lots in the woods but if they did get lost, what they should to. He got a whistle and an emergency blanket to keep. When we dropped him off it was pouring rain but as we drove across town to drop Alice off at her friend Willow's house the sky started to clear up. 

It was supposed to be a glorious 2 hour break from both kids while they were occupied but because the two events were so far apart. It was more like an hour and fifteen minutes of kid free freedom which I used to go shopping for thanksgiving groceries. 

Saturday afternoon, the kids played on their bikes and scooters while I made a pie crust. 

On Sunday, Sacha had his friend over to play.  It was a whirlwind. They flitted from one activity to the next like hummingbirds.  The two most successful things we did were making Halloween decorations for the windows and making slime out of glue and borax. The boys had fun pretending to sneeze giant boogers into their hands.  It was an intense two and a half hours.  Sacha struggled with letting his guest go first at board games and doing the things his friend wanted to do, like play soccer. He was so excited and out of his normal comfort zone.  After the play date was over, I could have used a nap but pressed on and finished the pumpkin pie I started the day before and made a peanut butter pie that was amazing. I think I now have an answer to the question, "if you were stranded on a desert island and could only have one thing to eat for the rest of your life, what would it be?" It would probably be a short life filled with diabetes and gout but peanut butter pie is delicious!!

We had the big turkey dinner at Margot's house. Sacha had been very adamant that he really wanted thanksgiving fruit this year. He was only going to eat turkey and thanksgiving fruit. So that was another project on Saturday. To make a horn of plenty out of paper mâché. The paint was still wet when we put it in the car and drove to Margot's.  I only had apples and a banana to put in it. Margot added a lemon.  Alice only had thanksgiving fruit this year, no turkey. 

Monday, I thought it might be fun to try to do a scout badge. So we looked up "global challenge". They are supposed to learn greetings in other languages, try foods from around the world, learn about wild animal conservation and plant a tree or flowers. We have since learned that the scout group works together to earn badges and not on their own but we had fun doing all the challenges anyway. We found out before we got to the planting part, so that didn't happen. But we learned greetings in French, Spanish, Russian and Japanese.  We went to a Korean BBQ and Japanese restaurant and Sacha tried dishes!!  He didn't try sushi but he tried yakisoba, ton katsu, green tea and Korean style grilled chicken and beef. He liked all of it except the yakisoba and for him with his food issues it was amazingly brave. He even practised using chopsticks and wasn't half bad. Alice was less adventurous, more squirmy and not interested in foods from around the world at all. 

After lunch, Sacha and I went to the aquarium. Alice was actually really naughty while at lunch. Climbing under the table, climbing on me, flicking good across the table etc, so after numerous warnings, she lost her chance to go to the aquarium yesterday. But Sacha and I learned that you can't thrown plastic bags in to the ocean because sea turtles and other creatures think they are jellyfish and eat them and that is very bad for them and they can die. 

And that was all the energy I had for the weekend, we came home and Sacha and Alice trashed my bedroom when they were supposed to be watching Mulan upstairs.  Laundry every where, every stuffed animal we own, Alice's duvet was mysteriously wet on the floor and bread crumbs in the bed. Two of my few rules in the house are 1) no food upstairs and 2) no toys in my room.  Little monsters. How did they have any energy left? At least I got to watch the season opener of Walking Dead while they partied it up upstairs. So it wasn't a total loss. 

Monday, October 06, 2014


I saw a really funny article about a mid-century recipe party on Jezebel spring and it looked so fun that I knew I wanted to throw one too. 

I have had a few friends over to my place before but it was basically the first party I've thrown since moving to White Rock, nearly 3 years ago. My last place was too small and depressing and I just haven't gotten myself organized at my new place. 

There are some pretty cool retro recipes to be found around the internet. Some highlights from the party were Tina's hedgehog cake. Wendy's sugar shuttles, the top cookie recipe from 1951, Shelley's authentic 1950s crab dip, Angela's cheese puffs with olives. I made a few things, Watergate salad, which I figured out after buying all the ingredients is from the 1970s. It wasn't bad either, as one recipe put it, once you get over the texture, it doesn't taste half bad. Definitely more of a dessert than salad though.  I also made a baked Alaska because I've been wanting to make one since the beginning of summer but got hit with all those allergies and couldn't make anything fun this summer (it was even on my summer bucket list!). Baked Alaska takes time to set but is pretty easy really, Will totally make it again.  No 1950s party is complete with out an aspic featured prominently. I knew no one would be coming back for seconds on this sucker, if anyone was brave enough to try it in the first place. So I didn't want to put in any meat. I don't have a problem throwing away a can of vegetables but I don't feel right knowingly wasting meat like that. So I made a vegetable broth and canned vegetable aspic ( jellied salad ) with hard boiled eggs.  I have a couple tips figured out as to how to make it better next time, one more pack of gelatine, add the canned vegetables right away ( not waiting for it to half set like it said in the instructions) but who am I kidding, I am never making one of these again. There were a few brave ones among us that tested it out. It was pretty unpleasant. 


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.