Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Merry Christmas!

Merry christmas by SashaWarner
Merry christmas, a photo by SashaWarner on Flickr.

Is it December yet?  No?  So close.  Its time to discuss Christmas.  December, schmember... Advent has started, and the liturgical calender is more suitable for these sorts of things than the Gregorian calendar anyways, right?

What better way to start the season than to celebrate a totally awesome gift?  Check out the picture of the banner.  One of my awesome neighbours made it for me out of cardstock and red and white twine.  Simple, beautiful and carries a strong message.  Just like me.  Kidding.  I do love it though.  

Not to worry.  She didn't slave over cutting out the letters - she has four kids, a gazillion pets, and no time for such mundane tasks.  She took it to the local library and used their letter making machine, which apparently whips them out in a jiffy.  Brilliant.  And rumour has it that anyone can use library letter cutter outers.  Especially if you have little ones learning to read.  Who knew?  That's your little tip of the day: seek out a local library letter cutter outer and use it!

(As a happy little side note - Nevin has finally taken an interest in little letters, thanks to the sign.  I love it when things unexpectedly become teaching tools!)

Hooray for great neighbours!

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Too much?

Blurred from embarassment by SashaWarner
The identity of the victim has been blurred for her safety.

I've been around the baby block before, but not like this. It was the blue and green and red and orange block with khakis and polos and little argyle sweater vests. The kind of block you would find in Southampton. This time around, with a girl, its more of a New York City block. And some days I feel like I'm teetering on the edge of Park Avenue, only one sequined headband away from Broadway. There are so many patterns, textures and glittery things.

How much is too much for little girls? Animal prints with pink velour bows? Faux fur with coordinating flowers half the size of their face? Sequined headbands? All of the above combined in all their glory? (As evidenced in the picture?)

Or is it all just so over the top that it becomes irresistibly adorable?

I swore I wouldn't do it, but now that its done, I think its kinda cute.

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Pumpkin French Toast Bake

This is yesterday's post.  Yesterday I was too tired at the end of the day to write it.

Scarlett was up at 4am to eat.  No big deal, but then she decided to stay up until 5am.  At that point, I was awake and my tummy was begging for breakfast.  And I was way to jazzed up about the first snow fall outside to settle back in under the covers.

Solution?  Pumpkin French Toast bake.  a.k.a. a quick and easy way to split a loaf of bread with your husband.  Yowza.  I got that going, popped it in the oven, did a pilates video, and then enjoyed.  What a great way to start the day.  Even if it was an early start.
Photo from Trudy's Kitchen (My picture had whip cream on it, but it got deleted...)

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Apple and Potato Soup

I am tired.  And cranky.  Nevin is tired.  And cranky.  Scarlett is... nine months old.  It hasn't been a great combo of people today.

But, as you know if you are a regular reader, food can really turn my day around.  So this afternoon, I'm making myself my favourite soup and homemade buns.  Taking my destiny into my own hands, so to speak.

From here on out its going to be optimism and hugs.  Wish me luck.

Photo via Softpedia

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Easy Caramel Popcorn: Family TV Night

Family TV Night by SashaWarner
Family TV Night, a photo by SashaWarner on Flickr.
Today, "our show" -- you know, the mindless one that you watch with your hubby that spurs random conversations -- was on an hour early. As in, over the entire get-the-kids-to-bed hour. Neither of us wanted to miss it, so we threw out the routine and invited the kids to join us.

I know its something so little, but it was so much fun. You know that feeling you got when you were eight and did something you knew you weren't supposed to do, but knew you were going to get away with it, so you could enjoy it, guilt free? That's what it felt like. Like eating stolen Halloween candy under the covers in the middle of the night. We were giddy.

We made caramel popcorn, got into our jammies and cuddled on the sofa. Well, at least three of us did. Scarlett spent half the time crawling around in circles, chasing the poor dog (who just wanted to curl up at Shawn's feet). Nevin had the time of his life - apparently he's never seen popcorn pop before, so you can just imagine.

Cheers to doing little things out of the ordinary.

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Squash Potato Skins

Squash Potato Skins by SashaWarner
Squash Potato Skins, a photo by SashaWarner on Flickr.
Last night, I learned two life lessons.
1) Anything topped with bacon, green onions, cheese and sour cream tastes better.
2) Anything topped with bacon, green onions, cheese and sour cream makes life feel better.

Friday, 11 November 2011

Cinnamon Bun Muffins

Today I made Cinnamon Bun Muffins. To celebrate. Because its Friday. And because Scarlett finally had a decent nap for the first time this week.

I highly recommend them, but I also highly recommend you take my advice at the bottom of the post.

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Homemade Tortillas

Homemade tortillas by SashaWarner
Homemade tortillas, a photo by SashaWarner on Flickr.
I had boat load of salsa left over from Shawn's party to eat up, and no tortillas, tortilla chips, or inspiration.

Solution? Make tortillas. I had no idea tortillas were so easy.

Since the rest of the meal was kind of blah on its own, the homemade tortillas made the meal exciting.  I basically made instant rice with half water and half salsa, added a can of black beans and a sauteed onion.  I know what you are thinking: who makes homemade tortillas and then stuffs them with instant rice?  I do... it was a pantry kind of meal, and that's what is in the pantry.  Stop judging.

Sunday, 6 November 2011

Shawn's Birthday

Shawn is awesome by SashaWarner
Shawn is awesome, a photo by SashaWarner on Flickr.

Friday was a big day.  We had people over.  And we had junk food and a drink (me) or two (Shawn) ...

Shawn is officially 30, so I planned a small surprize birthday party for him. 

I set the scene by making a sign for him to see when he looked in our window when he drove up to our house.  Who doesn't want to see their name in lights at some point in their life?  A little bit budget-friendly (read: white-trashy), but a little bit awesome.

I also made a budget friendly banner that further instilled the message that "Shawn is awesome."  Everyone who attended agrees.  Shawn IS awesome.  And so are our friends.  Especially the one who brought a growler of bog water.  What?  You don't know what that is?  Yeah, neither did I until I overheard him say, "I'm thinking of cracking the growler of bog water,"  and one of the other girls asked if he was speaking english.  Because we weren't sure.   Turns out its a big special jug of big special beer.

The next morning, since we are parents, and children don't care what their parents do the evening before, we were a little tired.  While I was in the shower, the following conversation could be heard:

Shawn lays on the bathroom floor beside the toilet.
Nevin:  What you doing, Daddy?
Shawn: Daddy doesn't feel well.
Nevin: If you sit on the potty and go pee, Mommy will give you a treat and you will feel better.


Below you will find the recipe for Shawn's Beer Dip, which was a hit at the party.

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Pumpkin Pie Spice

My last posted recipe included Pumpkin Pie Spice.  Just in case you were wondering how to do it yourself, here's the ratio of spices to make your own.  I had it in my porridge this morning.

Image via The Fresh Fridge
Pumpkin Pie Spice
(from My Baking Addiction)
3 tablespoons ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons ground ginger
2 teaspoons nutmeg
1 ½ teaspoons ground allspice
1 ½ teaspoons ground cloves

Combine spices in a small bow, mix well to combine. Store in a small jar or spice container.
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