Saturday, November 26, 2011

Where have all the Blogposts gone?

They're there in my head.

The blogposts, I mean.

We've been doing so many good things, and yet the end of the day comes, and the computer gets neglected, and all the wonderful, thankful thoughts and reflections just sit there, simmering on the backburner.

Here are some of my great reasons for blog procrastination:

The Queen of the DIY
It probably has a lot to do with the fact that once fall is upon us my indoor project genes  kick into full gear and no corner is safe.  Once I get going, it's hard to stop.
 These nasty beasts were transformed over a weekend...or two, I can't quite remember, sewing makes me very forgetful.  What I do remember is how faded and gross the chairs were, how much I wanted to change the covers, but also how much I didn't want to spend hundreds of dollars buying something new.

I decided it was worth dragging out my sewing machine for my bi-annual sewing spree. The indoor-outdoor fabric just happened to be on sale at Fabricland.  I thought about ordering fabric online - but as per usual, I woke up with the idea of recovering chairs and wanted, no, NEEDED to start it that day.  I have to grab inspiration when it hits, waiting does me no favours.

I ripped apart one of the chairs to make a pattern.  Transferred the chair pieces onto butcher paper, then I started cutting, and started sewing, and three days, two more trips to the fabric store to get more material, and one fit of "what in the world have I gotten myself into" later - it was done.  And I am so glad.

The double bonus is that now I have a pattern, and I know how to do it, so who knows what I might come up with next!

Birthday Bash
The Project Queen was reigning supreme when it came time to plan a get together for a bunch of my favourite ladies for my birthday at the end of October.  My mom took some great pictures of the girls night of fun, but I have yet to get them from her. Henceforth... no pics.  Ergo...there is no blog post about it.

Henceforth and Ergo are underused words, don't you think?

I'm sure it will happen eventually, and if people can scrapbook a Christmas page in June, why can't I do a birthday blogpost 6 weeks after the fact. Justification for procrastination.  It has a beautiful ring when I say it like that.

Painter Man, Painter Man...Sing with me!
I wanna be a painter man, or at least a painter woman.

Actually I don't.

I have a love-hate relationship with painting, but I'm very pleased with how it looks now that it's done!  I painted a couple of the upstairs bedrooms - it was time to change the kids rooms from fingerprint beige  - that's the colour contractors choose when they build a house, right? It's also high time we quit playing musical bedrooms, switching the combos of kids and rooms upstairs and down.  Painting them seems to give them a bit more permanence and personality.

I can't wait for the decorating etc. to be completed, they already look so much better! However, most of the decor is being given as Christmas gifts, so it won't be done till after Christmas.

We made a Fall List, much like the summer list, except, um, Fall-ish.  I really love these mini dreaming and goal setting sessions - although it appears they may kill me.

One of the items on the wishlist for the fall was to go bowling.  Sounds innocent enough, right?  Well if I haven't mentioned it before, let me say it loud and clear right now.  I am more than athletically disinclined. I wish it weren't so, but after bowling less than a full game with the whole fam-, almost a month ago I have just about become completely incapacitated due to a severe case of golfers elbow and some schwazzed tendons in my middle finger. (left handed/four fingered typing is a tad slower) So now my middle finger is in a splint, (of course it's my middle finger!) my arm is in a brace and a sling, and I have to manage to not use my right hand for a few problem. It's so ridiculous, it's comical!

With form like this, it's hard to believe my injuries weren't worse...stick to music, girlfriend
I'm sure it has nothing to do with recovering furniture, painting two bedrooms and crafting till i was blue in the face for a birthday bash.  That's, like, impossible.  But I'm not worried. It's not like Christmas is coming,

Well, that's just a little of what's been going on.  There are so many good things happening and so many good things coming.  Hopefully the medial epicondilitis clears up (fact: learning medical names for stupid injuries makes them sound more noble) and I can get back at it!

Until then - Happy Fall and Happy Advent...what are looking forward to this December?  That's a post in itself for me!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Saturday Morning Fun

While my kids are sorting and classifying the leftover Hallowe'en candy, I thought I would share our new favourite way to do breakfast on Saturday morning.  It was something my kids did at Josh's parents place a few weeks ago, and Brennan loved it enough to get himself in the kitchen and teach us all how to make this fantastic breakfast treat!

Things I love about this recipe, in no particular order are:

  • Bacon.  Amen.
  • It's easy to customize - the kids label their own bags and do the whole thing by themselves - yay for independence and not having to remember who likes what, where!
  • No frying pan to clean up.  And again I say:  Amen.
  • Brennan doesn't usually gravitate towards cooking - but this will get him working in the kitchen every single time, and that makes this Momma smile!
  • It deserves to be said again:  Bacon.

This recipe has been lovingly dubbed "Egg in a Bag"  by our family - and probably by a lot of other people who have made the same thing.

But I doubt it has ever been shown in such an excellent series of  high quality and artistic photographs.

Begin series:


Get rid of all your frustrations through mashing

Frustrations gone, egg mixed


Don't forget to label the bags!


Toss 'em in!



Please can I kiss this cook?

Where we discovered the cheesy ones need extra cooking ! *Please note we did not feed our son under-cooked eggs!

Tada!  It just slips right out!
Prep Time : 5 min plus (depending on how much prep  your mix-ins require)
Omelette served in:  15 min
Yield:  one, two-egg omelette

2 large eggs
Mix-In Ideas:
Salt and pepper to taste (optional)
Grated Cheese
Splash of Milk or Cream (optional)
Crumbled Pre-cooked sausage or bacon
Medium Freezer Bags (Must be high quality, thick plastic bags- we used Ziploc brand)
Diced Ham

Chopped peppers or spinach
·         Fill a large pot with water and set to boil.
·         Crack two eggs into freezer bag –  I am told one doesn’t work  that well, so stick with two!
·         Add salt and pepper and splash of milk, if using
·         Seal bag well and smoosh it around until the egg is well blended
·         Open bag and add mix-ins – about a Tablespoon of each mix-in seemed to work well – we used bacon and shredded cheddar last time!
·         Seal bag and shake to mix
·         Double check the bag is sealed
·         Toss in boiling water
·         Cook for 5 – 7 (ish) minutes. 
·         One egg is not enough to work well – haven’t tried three, but it would probably work, though you might need to increase the cooking time.
·         We found that “egg in a bag” without cheese cooked in 5 minutes, but with took about 7 minutes.
·         Bacon is great, and should be added to as many meals as is humanely possible.  Just doing my part to support the pork industry.

I'm looking forward to Saturday already!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Hallowe'en Poetry

To begin our Hallowe'en recap, I give you a haiku I composed when reflecting on the pumpkin carving experience.  I just can't keep talent like this to myself.

See the young ones scoop
Pumpkins full of stringy mess
Don’t barf! I’ll do it

Moving on.

On the Eve of Hallowe'en
Cleaning out pumpkins is apparently quite nauseating...and scary
The night before Hallowe'en we carved our pumpkins.  I always intend to do them a few days before,  but honestly - it always seems to be a last minute rush.  Josh starts preparing the kids for an inevitable let down:  maybe this year it will just be too busy to get them done. I usually agree with him - it always seems like it's going to be a insurmountable task to carve seven orange gourds into enchanting luminaries.  And yet, somehow we manage to get them hacked into something worth lighting and setting on the steps - enchanting...perhaps not, but at least it's done!

We could probably do better, but as long as we set the bar low enough, our kids will not know the difference, right?

The kids' pumpkins: as unique as the kids who think up their designs!

My pumpkin and Josh's - bonus marks if you have any idea what they represent. There's some serious artistic licence being taken there.

The kids got all costumed up - I planned for weeks days hours to get their costumes just right.

Thanks are in order:

First of all, thank-you London Drugs for being the first store in the area to have their costumes at 75% off on Hallowe'en Day.
"Capt'n, I need more Pow'rrrr"
Live long and prosper my sons, may the fortunes of pre-Hallowe'en sales always find you when your mother fails to plan good costumes in advance.

Sugar-rush anyone?

Secondly, thank you Sher for being a cheerleader in highschool and saving your uniform.  Even if I had been cool enough to be a cheerleader, I'm sure I would have gotten rid of it by now!

And thank you Keaton, for being perfectly happy to be a puppy, the same as every three year old brother before you was.

The Warming Station
Then we got ready for what is easily my favourite part of October 31st:  Our "Warming Station".

There was a moment while we were madly setting up, hoping to have everything ready before anyone started the neighborhood rounds, and Josh was running back into town to pick up styrofoam cups, because I have to - HAVE TO forget something important before each and every event I host, that I thought - this is a bad idea. We won't pull it off, I should blow out the lights, close the garage and just forget it.

But as always, I was wrong.

It was fantastic.  Even better than last year.

It was great to see many familiar faces come by with their kids to say hello and grab a hot chocolate or cider to keep them from freezing on their walk about.  Even better were the number of people who said they had been hoping we would do this again.  It hadn't occurred to me that we weren't the only ones who had enjoyed the warming station last year! Silly me.

I had printed off simple postcards inviting people to join a neighbourhood facebook page.  The response was really positive, and a few have already joined. Who knows what could happen here between this year and next?

When I wrote about our simple warming station idea for Family Matters last month, I was pleasantly surprised to hear how many readers were inspired to do, or were already doing something similar.  If you did take it up a notch connecting with your neighbours this Hallowe'en - leave a comment and let me know what you did! I'd love to hear about it!

And because I love to share my poetic genius with you.  I leave you with this:

Getting to know your neighbours is dandy
Especially on nights when they’re out getting candy
Give hot choc-lit to go
And you’ll soon get to know
All their names, which will come in quite handy!