Monday, November 17, 2008

The Rise of Semolina

Who here bakes bread?

Who here bakes bread WITHOUT a machine?

Who raised their hands for both questions? LOL

I don't have a bread maker, I AM the bread maker. I don't have a food mixer, I AM the food mixer, I am quite handy with the wooden spoon. (just ask the kids! lol j/k) I am trying a new recipe today. Semolina Sandwich loaf.

Sounds like a good one, it sure is a pretty yellow colour in the pictures, but will MY loaf turn out as nice? Only time will tell.

The reason I decided out of the blue to make this bread is because I actually had some semolina flour sitting in the cupboard. I was not doing anything with it, I did not know what to do with it, so I started tooling for recipes for it. I didn't find any I wanted to try, so back in the cupboard it went.

Last Thursday we ran out of bread. I had to make some for sapphire for school the next day. I started my dough for a big batch of whole wheat bread when I noticed a foul smell. After a few inquiring sniffs, I discovered that my whole wheat flour had gone stale! the whole bag smelled awful. So, in the trash the bread went. Feeling a mite discouraged, I decided to visit my favorite baking site, The Fresh Loaf.

After about 30 minutes of browsing for a nice white bread recipe and not finding one I was able to make, I found the recipe for the panini. It makes 6 paninis, and they tasted awesome. We made them into grilled cheese sandwiches...but before you wonder HOW I could ruin a great specialty bread by making it in to grilled cheese....Let me tell you what KIND of cheese we had! I have a block of sun dried tomato and herb Havarti cheese that I got for 2 dollars off at Coopers! We added a bit of deli meat to it, and had cinnamon apple slices and cheese cubes on the side. It was great! Kids will eat anything if there is a toothpick in it! But I digress...

On the same page as the panini bread was a link to this interesting yellow bread. I clicked on it thinking it would be a lemon loaf, because I love lemon loaf, but it said "Semolina Sandwich loaf" After checking out the ingredients, I realized that I HAVE them all! so I planned to make the bread. I finally got to making it today and as it cools on the cooling rack, I tell my tale, The Rise of Semolina.

Very good sliced while warm with butter and Havarti cheese. Mmmm.....more......

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Scavenger hunt!

I was tagged by my friend in her blog, and so here I am with all my picture answers. I tag....Jo! Happy hunting!

Answer the questions below, do a Google Image search with your answer, take a picture from the first page of results, and do it with minimal words of explanation.

Your age at your next birthday..did you really think I would make this easy?

Favorite place I would like to travel to

My favorite place

Favorite Food

Favorite Pet

Favorite Color Combination

Favorite Piece of Clothing

Favorite Movie

Town I live In

First Job

Dream Job

Bad Habit

Worst Fear

Something you would like to do before you die

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Four things

Four things I did today:
1. Buy new clothes for work
2. Try on all my new clothes over and over again in as many possible combinations just to see how they look.
3. I took all my old/broken electronics in to the next town where they will be recycled.
4. Played "Dora the explorer, around the world" with Raven. Mainly just the singing and clapping bits.

Four things on my to do list:
1. Organize all the closets
2. Bring the spare bed to the storage locker across town
3. Scrape and paint the bathroom ceiling
4. Wash the car mats. I spilled some coffee on one the other week, and though I cleaned up what I could, it still smells funky.

Four of my guilty pleasures:
1. Coffee, especially with the hazelnut flavoured cream, or the hazelnut icedcapp from Tim Horton's.
2. Cream cheese. I am like that angel on the Philadelphia cream cheese commercials. A sliver of bagel under a mountain of cream cheese, and I STILL wind up thinking it could have used more.
3. Reading when I should be doing other things.
4. Posting in blogs and on forums and playing stupid games on Facebook when I should be doing other things.

Four random facts about me:
1. I love vintage style clothing and jewellery. I am going to be a flapper for Halloween.
2. I love to collect rocks. Where I live you can find all sorts of semi precious gems and stones, just laying out there on the river's edge.
3. I love to cook, It's like brewing a potion that cures hunger and satisfies my family, at the same time showing how much I love them.
4. I love hats, and cool knee socks.

My sister didn't tag me, so I tagged me on her behalf. lol Love ya Jo! I don't think enough people read this blog for me to tag anyone, so If you like, consider yourself tagged if you haven't done this one already!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Garbage Guts II

When Mister was small, he would eat anything. Peanut butter mayo and m&m sandwiches, his sister's left overs, you name it, anything but fish. His sister used to always call him Garbage Guts for all the gross stuff he would eat.

They say that the apple does not fall far from the tree, and here is a little story of what happened today.

There is a new garbage guts in the family! I love pickled garlic, and when I pickle garlic I do several batches at once. This time around I was doing 4 batches. That is 6 pounds of garlic total. It is very time consuming to blanch and peel all that garlic, so I do it over a few days.

As I was sterilizing the jars in preparation I was also peeling the last few cloves. As I was going through the garlic to make sure I hadn't missed peeling one, Raven asked if she could have one. She is always asking for some of whatever I am cutting at the time, it is usually carrots, or peppers, or celery. Of course I told her she would not like it. "But I lub it!" she insisted.

So I gave her a whole garlic clove, freshly peeled, and strong. She popped it in her mouth and started chewing. Her eyes got wider and wider as she kept chewing. Too proud to admit that she might not care for eating raw garlic, she walked on her tippy toes with her arms held half way out, perhaps for balance as she concentrated on keeping a poker face.

She stayed in the living room for a bit and I called out to her "Did you eat the whole thing?"

"Yeah!" came the reply.

A moment later Raven came back into the kitchen with her head low saying in a small voice, "I don't like it." so I let her spit it into the trash.

I was laughing my butt off so I went upstairs to tell Mister what happened. When I came back downstairs she was eating some old popcorn out of the trash! Thankfully it was still in the popping bag and not actually touching other trash.

Move over Mister! There's a new Garbage Guts in town!

Introducing Princess Garbage guts!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Busy and FOrgettful

I am so forgetfull I cant spell. LOL Just a quick note to say that MIster is home for the season, and having some health issues, We are dealing with this, plus I am looking for work, and taking 2 courses by correspondance. I will be back for a REAL update soon.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Summer Fun

I have an unexpected day off so we decided to go hiking. My sister in law and niece came with us. We went to an intermediate trail called The Spirit Cave Trail. It leads to the Spirit Caves. We were looking forward to seeing the spirit caves, but since we had a 3 year old in attendance we were unable to go the distance. Part of the trail got so narrow there is no way she would have made it without falling down the mountain. Here is Raven having a rest.

Jewel is quite the hiker. She was always way ahead and more than willing to meet the challenges of a difficult trail. This trail is advertised as intermediate, but it's harder than than. Much of the trail was steep with a drop off on one side. Next time I use this trail, I will bring rope and less kids.

Two of the kids whined and complained the whole way up "I want to go home now," " lets turn back," "I don't want to hike anymore" As soon as we got back to the car, I asked "who had fun?" The one that complained the most was the first to say "ME!" Here is the view from not even half way up.

Afterwards we went to dairy queen and had some ice cream. It probably wasn't the best idea, since we probably ate as many calories as we burned, but the kids did such an awesome job on such a difficult trail that we decided they needed a treat. We were quite the sight I am sure. We walked into that dairy Queen all sweaty, smelly, covered in dust and dirt, our clothes were so dirty it was unclear what the original colour was, We sat down right next to a group of people that were dressed in their Sunday best hair perfect, dresses pressed, shoes shined. The kids were staring, I bet they were wishing they had as much fun as we did. lol If you are not dirty, you weren't having enough fun. ;-)

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Beauty and the Beast

My life has a lot of positive and a lot of negative right now. Lets start with the negative, so that we can end on a positive note.

The Beast

The beast is this case is my job. I run a dayhome, and although I like the kids, and I like the kids mom (she is a friend and neighbour) I am having a very tough time with communication. My job as a care provider is to make sure that while the kids are in my home they are in a healthy, nurturing environment. I choose to provide lunch, and afternoon snacks for the kids in my care. Not breakfast or dinner. I require that all kids in my care are dressed apporopriately for the weather at all times. This means shoes that fit, and jackets are a must as well as things like sun screen. Thjis is not too much to ask at all. It is only because she is my friend that I even provide lunch for the kids. Anyone else and they will be made to pack a lunch. I also ask that if you are going to be late getting the kids, you call and let me know. If you are off work at 4, dont wait till 6 to get your kids, I have a life, I have plans. I am not at anyones beck and call. I will give notice when I need a specific day off, and it is then up to you to switch shifts, or find alternate care(this one is a huge issue as my notices are largely ignored).

These kids are never fed breakfast in the morning, and they are in tears crying with hunger on some days. (and no I don't feed them breakfast when they start crying of hunger, they always wait untill just before lunch to cry for breakfast)The youngest one was wearing worn out cowboy boots most of the summer that made her walk with her ankles at on odd angle. Then she was given a pair of sandals that were sop big on her, that half her foot hung over the front and the back flopped around behind her and caused her to fall over often. THe middle child had runners that were so small that he had to fold the heel down just to get most of his foot in them. The excuse was that they kids refused to wear thier new shoes, or that she could not afford them(as she paraded around in a new 150 dollar outfit from our local designer boutique). I have said I need a certain day off only to be told that that I was expected to take the kids at 4pm instead of 8am. I said I cant so she said she would get another babysitter. Then she called me up that afternoon and told me that I had to releive the babysitter at 8. What part of "I can't work that day" is so hard to get? I have given my notice, I quit as of the 18th august.
So, you can see why I refer to my job as "the Beast" there is a lot of negative energy in that home, and it gets carried into my home every day. It has the effect of making me miserable and depressed to the point where I can't get motivated to do the simplest tasks. My dishes are stacking up, my floor needs to be swept and mopped, my carpets need to be cleaned, and the bathtubs and toilets are starting to show rings...I thought I would jkust need a good vacation, and I have had 2 this summer. I still feel stressed out so it is time for a change.


The Beauty part of my life these days is that my dear sister is moving to to my town(no, not Jo, my other sister! lol) I am also taking a Magickal Handcrafting course, and a Kitchen Witch course through the Pagan Online Campus. I am learning a lot and we are only on week 2!

Jewel has orange hair now. It is a temporary colour mousse called "Ginger Rush." I also did a couple streaks in Raven's hair, and they look absolutely stunning! It's called Loreal Colour Pulse. Raven is very proud of her orange hair, she has been showing it off all day. lol To the same people too, every one sais "We know Raven, your hair is ORANGE!" lol It shows up a lot better in natural light, but here are the pictures of the new hair colour.

Another Beauty part of my life is that this past week Mister has been home. Life with Mister home is always blissful, no matter what. It was our anniversary August 6th, Mister took me to a restaurant in Vancouver called Cin Cin. It is SOOOO fancy that I could not pronounce half the menu items, and one little bit of food on a HUGE plate cost 39 dollars. lol It was great food, and amazingly enough, we left feeling satisfied. Mister had the Green Asparagus Soup Garnished with Fava Beans and Basil Creme Fraiche, Risotto of 1 Year Aged Biodynamic Rice, Local Organic CornBlack Summer Truffle, with pine apple juice to drink and Tiramisu Caramel Ice Cream, Chocolate Waffle for dessert. I decided against the appatizere, but after tasting Mister's soup, I wished I had ordered some too. lol I had Gnocchi with Wild Boar, Juniper Berries, Cippolini Onion, Kumquat and Marjoram, with Italian rose wine, and Raspberry Creme Brulee with fresh raspberries and Lemon ice cream or sherbert whatever it was called. It was a special so I can't copy and paste it from the menu like I did the rest of it. lol

After Dinner we went for a walk on the seawall and watched the sunset. I took this picture with my cellphone. The picture does not do the sunset any justice. After our walk we went to see a movie, we saw The Dark Knight. That was a cool movie, made me jump in a couple places though. lol That's ok with me though, I could fake being scared so I can snuggle up to Mister! lol

Today is Jo and KD's 6th wedding Anniversary. Happy Anniversary dear sister! I love you! Mister the kids and I got a chance to visit with Jo, KD and JK. Here is a picture of us visiting. KD is ordering pizza, so he was not in the pic, Mister was taking the picture, Jewel's ear is visible on the right, JK is "flying" Raven is staying close to me, to make sure that I don't show JK too much love while I help JK "fly" and Jo is the only one who is aware that Mister is takeing a picture. lol Yes, that IS me holding JK. I cut and dyed my hair, but I didn't post about it. I have to redye it tonight, so I will post a picture once that is all done. No point is showing off my roots!

For dinner tonight I am making Tomato Lentil Soup with cheese biquits. Yum Yum! Here is the recipe for those who wish to try it.
4tbs unslated butter
2 cups chopped onions
2 cups chopped celery
2 cans plum tomatoes(35oz)
6 cups chicken stock or canned broth (Veggie broth tastes great as well)
1/2 cup dried lentils
1 cup fresh chopped parsley
1/2 cup dry red wine (I used to leave this out, but trust me, add it! it tastes AWESOME)
4 cloves of garlic
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1 tbs sugar
Melt butter in large soup pot and add the onions and celery. Cook over low heat untill veggie are tender. Puree tomatoes in blender with the juice and add veggies. (I use diced tomatoes and I dont puree anything, I like chunky soup)Add chicken stock and lentils and simmer uncovered for 20 minutes, stirring occationally. Add 1/2 parsley and wine and spices stir well and simmer for another 5 minutes. Serve immediately. As I said, I use diced canned tomates, and I dont puree anything, I cook the veggies in a pan and add them to the soup 5 minutes before serving. you can use canned lentils it will cut down on cooking time, and don't be afraid to add an extra clove of garlic.
It is cooking in my slow cooker now, and it smells absolutely wonderful!

Monday, July 28, 2008

It's been awhile...

What a busy month! I have not had a chance to detangle that monster of a tote full of yarn, but I did relocate it temporarily. For now it is in a clear plastic bag, I needed the tote for camping. I need more totes. First we went for a visit in the next valley for 4 days. My cousin lives there on a farm with her husband and 3 kids. We bought a new tent and set it up in her yard. We hung out, went to the beach, bbq'd all sorts of goodies. :D But most importantly, we got to spend time with family we don't get to see often.

All of us got quite tanned, and a bit burned. I really have to start wearing hats. I have burned my scalp 3 times this summer! After we came home from the valley, we got a few days rest while we waited for my sister(not Jo) and her family to come visit us. They surprised up by showing up a day early. BA(almost 4) and Raven hit it off immediately. CF(age 2) was happy playing by herself for the most part, but she joined in the fun when it suited her. BA and Raven loved to cuddle together while watching Dora, or Diego. CF just snuggled on the other end of the couch with a blanket and her thumb. hehe

We went on our very first camping trip ever, and we had tons of fun! I was so exhausted after our We went to a campground that had an outdoor swimming pool, it was 3.5 feet at it's shallowest, but we got each wee one a floaty ring and told them to kick, and they loved it! Now Raven tries to swim on her own without flaty devices! She is such a little dare devil. *grins* When Mister was her age, he swam out to a bouy and on his own, for a small child, that is quite the swim! He was trying to get to his mom who was giving his sister a ride to the bouy and back. His mom almost had a heart attack when she realized he had followed her out!

Our tenting site was one of the larger ones, which is good because we had 2 tents and a kiddie pool. The pool turned out to be a not so good idea. The kids loved it, but since they are in and out constantly, all the dirt from the forest floor made the water very murkey, and then they didn't want to playin the dirty water. In this picture from left to right, CF, BA, Raven, Jewel, and CE. The tents look so far away in this picture! It was a pretty big tenting site. And private.

Here is my camp kitchen. The sink(aka large metal bowl) also doubles and an oven. It works great for ribs! Next time I go camping, I will try baking bread with it. :D Nothing complicated, just busquits. I will let you know if they turn out! We didn't use the picnic table for eating because the table is very high compared to where the seats are, and none of the wee ones could see over the table when seated.

The only regret I have with camping is that Mister was unable to join us. HIs job keeps him away for most of the warmer months. He will be home on thursday for a visit! *does the happy dance*

Sunday, July 6, 2008

New Toys and Old Nightmares

Yesterday I got a new cell phone. It's the Samsung m510, colour, purple. It's cute and there is a way to make my own ringtones. *shh! don't tell the phone company!* Just yesterday I was telling my friend that games on cell phones are pointless. When the heck would I ever play it? Well, guess what I spent my morning doing...heh heh I was browsing the availible downloads on the phone company's website, and they have a phone version of my favorite PC game, The Sims2. I caved, paid the 7 dollars, and have been playing all morning.

A HUGE Happy Birthday to my beautiful niece, JK. She is one year old yesterday!
This next picture is Jewel, Raven, and JK. (left to right...or is that back to front? heh heh )

I need to get back to work. I have a pile of housework waiting for me. I have been largly avoiding housework the past few days. Once my house work is done, I have to tackle....THE THING. This is the stuff that nighmares are made of. It started small, and just got bigger, and bigger... It's getting harder to contain, and it's taking over my crafting space! It's ALIVE!!! AHHHHHHHHH!!!!

This is AFTER I detangled about 6 balls of yarn.

I even tried offereing to pay Jewel a dollar for each ball of yarn she untangled. She demanded more. So it gets contains, I add no new yarn, but somehow it finds more. I think I will offer her 50 bux to help me detangle...payment upon completion. LOL

When we went shopping in chilliwack we bought some books. Jewel got 2 graphic novels. Warriors, and Peach Fuzz. Warriors is about cats who are warriors, and Peach fuzz is well, I don;t know what it is about, but it's very girly, and rated good for all ages. heh heh

For Raven I got Go Dog Go, and Ten Apples Up On Top. I Loved them as a kid. Remember those Jo? Do you remember the one with the animal that has spots? He could change them and take them off to play with and everything...I want to buy that one too, but I don;'t remember the name. Also, I Wish That I Had Duck Feet. lol

Monday, June 30, 2008

I have Garlic breath and I love it!

Note: the garlic pictured is from a batch that didn't turn out. I don't have pictures of all the awesome batches I made afterwards.

I feel the need to toot my own horn a bit. I make the BEST pickled garlic. Not too spicy, not too vinegary. It is awesome on pizza.

This is the pizza my husband made. He used whole cloves of pickled garlic. I sliced my garlic. My toppings included prego sauce, green peppers, onions, feta cheese, spinach, mushrooms, pickled garlic, and cheddar cheese. I don't like mozzarella, so I put cheddar on all my pizzas. Aged cheddar.

This Next picture has nothing to do with pickled garlic, but it was SOOOOO yummi! Chicken tenders(sliced breast) with spices, garlic jelly, onions, green peppers and sliced lemons. I served it with rice. I think I will make this again tonight, but because it is so hot here these days, I will serve it with spaghetti squash instead of rice. It looks just like spaghetti, it acts like spaghetti, it has fewer carbs, and it is awesome with butter and lemon pepper on it.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Long weekend! WOOT!

I have been a bit scarce around here due to Mister being home from work. He is gone a month at a time and so he pretty much gets all the attention while he is home. So far we have been having a lot of fun. We went to the beach yesterday and we all have tans, NOT burns!! I bought sunscreen that was gentle for babies, with an SPF of 45. My girls are nicely browned, but alas, I am still pasty. I have a nice collection of angry looking red mosquito bites! SIL recommended applying vinegar, so I have been walking around all day smelling like a salad. It stung a bit, but after a few minutes the itch seems to have subsided.

Yesterday we went to the beach. I was bored, so I said to Mister, "Lets go to the lake!" He mumbled a few excuses as to why we shouldn't go, which irritated me because I figured I would have to talk him into it. Then a light bulb went off, and I realized, nothing will get done, unless I do it. We won't go anywhere unless I make it happen. So, I did. Mister declared that he wouldn't go in the lake, so I handed him my purse and camera and ordered him to guard it in the shade while we went and had fun.

That is me in the picture, I had my hair cut and dyed. So far I hate it. They messed up the colour, and the cut is nothing like the picture. I did it the day before Mister got home, and surprised him with it when I picked him up at the airport. I would post a picture of what it looks like now, but all the pictures I took turned out all dark, and weird looking. I am thinking about having the back shorter so I can spike it. Or I will just get it converted into a short inverted bob. Hair grows! It needs more colour in it. The front was supposed to be a BRIGHT royal purple. IT wound up being a dark maroon that is only distinguishable from the black is you peer squinty eyed at in bright light. Also, I was brave and went in my bikini.

Raven fell asleep mid-snack. How cute!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Blessed Litha!

I have been working on customizing my blog, as you can see things are changing around here! Soon, I will be happy with the layout and colours, and input is welcome.

My dear Friend, Ibar Sorgina and her son came to visit us for Litha. We went for a walk, and collected natural craft suplies aka sticks. We sliced Oranges and lemons to dry, they sure take a long time! Ibar Sorgina had to go before the oranges were ready for hanging. Here is one that I made. I added beads and cinnamon sticks. Jewel is still working on hers.

We made sunwheels, and paper crafts as well. My sunwheel isn't quite done, I am not sure what I want to do with it yet. Maybe add beads? Feathers?

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Bees and Babies

Raven tried swatting at a fly that was buzzing past her face yesterday, and smacked herself in the face. Then she came running over to me saying "There's a bee in my nose!" So I looked up her nose and assured her that there was no bee in her nose, but she was not satisfied. She said "The bee is in my ear!" I couldn't respond to that very well, I was laughing too hard.
Raven LOVES to sing. One of her favorite songs to sing along with is Downtown by Petula Clark. She only knows one word of the song, which is "downtown" so she mumbles the rest, and belts out the word "downtown" at the top of her lungs. My youngest daycare kid loves the song as well, and sings it the same way as Raven. So when we are driving around on errands, I put the CD in and grin away at the chorus in the backseat.
Mister is coming home on the 26Th. For those who don't know my husband works up north all summer, and we only get to see him for one week ever 6 weeks or so. It's rough, but we tough it out. He will be home in time for both his sisters birthday, and Jewel's birthday. I am looking forward to...we'll just end that sentence right there, shall we?
Still working on the blog design. I have not figured out what I want yet, But I figure I should not let something as silly as layout keep me from posting in my blog. Some days it will be readable, and other days it wont be. yarrgh! HTML!
Happy Blogging!