Monday, 26 March 2012


I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13

Those who hope in me [God] will not be disappointed. Isaiah 49:23

Friday, 23 March 2012


Fog over the Ottawa River, which still has some ice.

Wild turkeys busy in a field

Going for a walk, and enjoying the scenery

These are my favourite views of Spring today. On all my recent walks this Spring, I have been having the thoughts of renewal and fresh starts frequently. Possibly because I have been attempting to do this in my own life. In many areas of my life. But it brings such peace and hope to me that God knows we have weaknesses, and sin that we hold onto, but that He gives us the constant opportunity to let it go. He extends His grace, and when we let Him in to do His work, there will be new growth to replace what we had there. Our life if we allow it can be a continuous cycle of all the seasons. Spring can be the most exciting. Yet:
Simple. Full of
            Rain to wash away.
                                   Imagine all He can do with you, if you allow
Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassion's never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. Lamentations 3:22,23.

Monday, 19 March 2012

// Pause Button //

You cannot show unconditional love, if the person meets all the conditions. –Paul Washer

Saturday, 17 March 2012

And Finally Chicken Noodle Soup

This last M.B.A.H."cooking class" was my youngest's pick, Chicken Noodle Soup. I thought it was an easy fun pick, but the chefs thought it involved too much chopping (and they have really grown to hate chopping the onions. They try to shove the job off on to the other). But I thought it was a good way to show them how they could make a soup how ever they liked, with the kinds of veggies they preferred. And it doesn't take much skill, just some time.
Here is what we concocted for our Chicken Noodle Soup 
1 large chicken breast
4 or more tbsp. chicken soup base
the tops of 2 bundles of celery (saved from leftover celery sticks), chopped
1 carrot, peeled and chopped
2 cups broccoli florets
2 cups green beans
2 cups of any pasta (we used a mixture of bow tie,
or as the little one calls them moustaches, and spiral)
1 onion chopped
big pinch of oregano
big pinch of thyme
a bunch of dashes of lemon pepper
and celery salt each
 Put the chicken breast in a big soup pot and cover with water. Boil until cooked through. Remove from the water, but don't dump the water. Once the chicken is cooled, cut it up, put back in the pot along with all the other ingredients. And add about 4 cups of water.
 Good healthy soup guys, you worked well together on this.

Friday, 16 March 2012

Dreary Wet Days, Call for Art and Indoor Tent Projects

 Well the forecast called for beautiful March Break weather, but the weather has been doing otherwise. The kids made tents, then in the afternoon I took the opportunity to do the flying geese project. I got deeper into the facts as to why geese fly together in a V formation, with some google help. I found out that they do this because it makes it 70% easier for them when they all fly together, because they each create an up draft for one another. Also, because of the placement of their eyes, being on the sides of their head, they can see each other better being slightly to the left or right when they are behind one another. They are so much a team that when one is injured or for some other reason needs to leave the formation and land, two other geese will stay with it until it can take off again, and then they join another formation for easier travel to catch up with the old flock.
 This was a great teaching tool, while I used verses:
Ecclesiastes 4:9-12
Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! Again, if two lie together, they keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone? And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken.
Hebrews 10:2-25
And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.
1 Thessalonians 5:14-22
And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all. See that no one repays anyone evil for evil, but always seek to do good to one another and to everyone. Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. ...

We glued verses on construction paper, painted as sky's. And glued little paper birds, in V formations.

For this days M.B.A.H. "cooking class" we made Hamburgers which was my eldest daughters pick. It was supposed to be Veggie Burgers, but to my husbands great dismay (cough) I didn't have black beans on hand for the recipe. So it was tough, but we had to settle for hamburgers (cough). This was by far the easiest recipe with them, but my son would under no circumstances mush the meat together and form patties.

We just mixed some chopped onion, pepper, salt, Worcestershire sauce, some wheat germ, a little oatmeal, 2 eggs, and a little milk to make these. They were good, between a homemade bun.
 A real hit guys, Grandma even came for her all time favourite: burger.

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Muffins and Minor Stresses

 Yesterday, oh yesterday...It was productive...we did some good baking...but for the emotional was one of those days. Thank goodness it is a yesterday now. Its just one of those kids trying to fight for my attention and get under each others skin type of things, but it just seemed a little more overwhelming  than usual to me.
 Earlier in the afternoon we started on some homemade English muffins to make TUES. Menu item: Mini Pizzas. Which was my sons pick.
Homemade English Muffins
2 cups buttermilk
3 3/4 cups flour
4 1/2 tsp instant yeast
2 tb sugar
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 tb honey
1 tb butter at room temp.
Cornmeal for dusting

> Warm milk in the microwave or on stove top in pot. In a large bowl mix the next 4 ingredients. Then add the buttermilk, then honey and butter. Stir until dough is fully combined, add a little flour if its too gooey. Shape into a ball. It will be sticky.
> Cover and let rise in the fridge for at least 2 hrs. up to 24 hrs.
> Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and sprinkle with cornmeal. Sprinkle some more on your work surface and place dough on top to roll out to 3/4 inch thickness. Use something to cut into 12, 3 inch rounds. I of course use a can opened at both ends. And place on parchment lined baking sheet. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise for 45 min.

> Heat oven to 350, and then heat a large skillet over med. heat until very hot (a drop of water sizzles dry right away). Brown each side 3-5 min. Then return to baking sheet, and repeat until all the muffins are browned.
> Bake 15-20 min. These are the best English muffins we ever had. Aparently the cat thought so too. While they were on the rack cooling, we went outside for a while. Upon my return to the kitchen I realized a muffin was missing. Through further investigation, we could tell the cat had plucked one off the rack nibbled away at it and left her evidence on the chair. Obviously MacMurray (our dog) would have devoured it on the floor. Bad Kitty, you gave yourself away.

 The ground work was done for these easy little pizzas, that the kids whipped together when it was dinner time!
 Another awesome job guys.
 In all honesty it was a stressful day, with the hecticness of life overwhelming me. But I did take some time in the evening to take a quick relaxing bath, I burned some lavender oil, while sipping a tea and reading a book. I thank the Lord for that relaxing moment, it was truly needed and it worked.

Tuesday, 13 March 2012


March Break At Home
 I know I'm definitely not the only family not flying off to a tropical destination this March Break. And so with my kids getting a bit older it makes it a bit tougher for them not to get bored easily. I decided it would be a week of cooking and baking "classes".  Also I made a rule: As much time you spend outside is as much time is allowed on entertainment (movies, wii, Internet). I made a sign out/in sheet to track their time. So far it is working out excellent. It kind of is a whole other activity in itself, teaching the kids to be more aware of time, and I think they think its fun.
 Yesterday morning I had them each figure out a meal they wanted, and I picked one as well.
Here is what is on our blackboard:
This first recipe was my pick. Easy Cabbage Roll Casserole was a great recipe to start off with. It really was easy, and very good.
1 1/2 lbs. ground beef
2 med. onions, chopped
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 tp. salt
1/4 tp. pepper
1 -221ml can tomato sauce
1 cup water
1- 284ml can condensed tomato soup
1/2 cup long grain rice
4 cups (we actually ended up using 8 cups, and was still great) shredded cabbage
1/3 cup tomato juice or water
sour cream

> In frying pan over med. heat, cook first 5 ingredients. Drain fat, return to heat, add tomato sauce, water, 1/2 the can of soup, mix well and add rice.

> In slow cooker, place half of meat mixture, then half of cabbage. Repeat
> In bowl combine tomato juice with remaining soup, mix and pour into slow cooker. Cover and cook on low 8-10 hours or high 4-6 hours.
Very Well done, guys!!

 More to keep them busy: They are both reading a Diary of a Wimpy Kid, book each, and I'm gunna try to throw in some crafty art projects. I'm thinking something to do with the Canadian Geese flying home now. We saw them yesterday and they had some questions. I'm hoping to go deeper with that.

Monday, 12 March 2012

Line Drying Weather! And more frugality...

I have been looking forward to this time of year, when I can hang a few loads of laundry out and it dries before the days end. I cant wait to smell the fresh clean sent as I am folding it all. I am so easily thrilled, aren't I?
I came up with a simple idea to use all the Clementine crates we have acquired through out the winter. I just don't feel right about throwing them all out and the little wooden boxes looked to rough to use, so I made a pretty liner. And now it fits right into my decor.

I just cut out a piece of fabric for each side and bottom with an inch seam allowance, and I doubled the height of the sides, for folding down over the edge.
Pinned right sides together.
I sewed up the pieces that are attached to the bottom piece first. Then I sewed the side seams up.
Then sewed a hem around the top edge. I made it a pretty small hem. But a big one would look nice too.
Now I have a pretty little lined box, handy for all sorts of things. I'm using mine for books. Also I should note that this is a recycled project all around. The fabric I used was a pillow case I wasn't using any longer.

Saturday, 10 March 2012

// Pause Button //

Moments spent listening, talking, playing, and sharing together may be the most important times of all.
Gloria Gaither

Sunday, 4 March 2012

A Concert with Kids

 Yesterday evening was spent in Ottawa at a free concert, featuring a local artist, Scott Towaij. It was a great experience. The music was great and the lyrics were wholesome. Another thing, is that it was so nice to be able to bring our kids and not worry about anything wrong that they might be exposed to but they hopefully were encouraged along with me in the music and the atmosphere. 
 In contrast to this, brings to mind a recent add for M&Ms. It really shouldn't blow my mind how this advertisement has sexualized children's candy, considering other adds for TOILET PAPER, body lotion, jeans, perfume, shoes. But when it is meant to target children, that really makes me feel violated as a mother. My son was on a website for children's games. And I told him I'm sorry but you have to play on another site because of that add. That's not right!!
 Because of the mass amount of advertising most of us are subjected to we become so desensitised and we hardly recognise what the message the add is giving. Most come to think that the references to sex are just funny and harmless. And I guess thats how it all gets worse and worse. Well I guess I'm ranting now. But I wish more recognised what is really being fed to the public by the media. I'm going to look into seeing what I can do about this. There is a reason most children are loosing thier innocence at such an early age, thsese days...It has to start somewhere...

Friday, 2 March 2012

{ this hot chocolate moment }

Perogies - I never knew they were so easy to make!

I've never considered, that I could make my own perogies. And since I have decided that I wanted to try it, I was really looking forward to the outcome. Easy-Yes. Quick-No. But none the less I enjoyed it and my hubbie could have made me slave away to make him more and more. "The best hes ever had" he says. I don't think I'll argue. By far one of those foods that is so much tastier homemade.
(this is my own recipe version)
Sweet Potato Bacon Perogies

  • 1/4 cup butter                                                        Filling:
  • 3 cups flour                                                           1 cup chopped sweet potato
  • 1 tsp salt                                                                1/2 cup chopped white potato
  • 1/4 tsp pepper                                                       1/2 tsp each of salt and pepper
  • 1 egg                                                                     5 slices of bacon
  • 3/4 cup water                                                        2 onions, finely diced

Melt 2 tbsp of the butter. In a bowl whisk the flour and salt together. With the melted butter, whisk in the egg, and water. Stir into the flour mixture, adding up to 2 tbsp more of water if it is needed, to make a soft, but not sticky dough. Knead it until smooth, then divide dough into two balls, and cover with plastic wrap.

 Now make the filling. To a pot of salted water, boil the potatoes, until tender. Drain and mash, then add the salt and pepper. In a skillet, fry bacon until crisp. Drain the bacon and chop. Add to the mashed potatoes. Drain most of the fat from the hot skillet and fry the onions. (ohh, the smells in the kitchen by now are awesome) Fry until golden, then add to the potato mixture.

 Take a ball of dough, leaving the other covered, and roll it out on a floured surface to 1/8 inch thick. Its a little tough but try to roll it out real thin. Use a 3 inch round to cup out your circles. A tin can opened at both ends works great.

Place 1 heaping tsp. of filling on each round. Moisten half of each round with water, working with one at a time. Fold in half and pinch together very well, to make a good seal (no soggy perogies please)

Place perogies on a flour dusted tea towel, covered with another, while you finish making the perogies. At this point you can freeze them to have them handy for cooking at another date!

OR cant wait to eat them. In this case you get a pot of salted water boiling, add batches of perogies that can easily fit in the pot. Gently boil for 4 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer to a colander to drain.

In a skillet, melt remaining butter over medium heat, and fry them until golden, and a little crispy.

Enjoy, with something else...fried onions and sausage maybe...or just sour cream. Yum