Tuesday, June 29, 2010


I have just been planning my week and I am so excited for it! Today we're getting our minivan which will make getting Gabe in and out of the car sooooo much easier. Tomorrow I am driving the new van to Calgary first thing in the morning and hitting up the zoo with my sister, my beloved cousin from Montana and a bunch of other mommies. In the afternoon I'm hoping to do some shopping in Calgary (I need a dress for my cousin's wedding) and then getting home in time to make dinner for Matt. If (big if) I get home in time, maybe I'll convince my mom to go down to the mid-week Farmer's Market with me! Thursday I believe Matt is working even though it's Canada Day. My parents wanted to spend the day with Gabe and I so I think we might take Gabe to Heritage Ranch for their Canada Day barbque and to let him have his first pony ride! I'm so excited for that!! Friday, as I mentioned previously, we're going to Drumheller to hit up the Royal Tyrrell Museum. When we're there I'm hoping to go to my friend's cafe too. And since I haven't been to Drumheller in a very long time, and might not be able to go again for another long time, we'll probably want to see all of the attractions, so the world's largest dinosaur, the Fossil World Discovery Center and the Hoodoos. After we get home we'll probably have dinner with my parents and maybe have a fire that evening. On Saturday Matt and I are cleaning out our office. Ever since we moved into this house we've been putting random things in the office just to get them out of the way. If we didn't know where to put it, that's where it went. SO, what is supposed to be our guest room is a huge mess and cannot actually accommodate anyone. We've decided to finally deal with it so that our friends can stay here if they need to. Sunday we'll be going to Edmonton (again, as I mentioned before) and when we're there I think we'll be going out to dinner at OPM - this asian restaurant that so many different people have told us about that we really need to check it out ourselves.
That, my friends, is looking like a very good few days.
Today is fairly low-key, besides getting the van. No company, no shopping, lots of cleaning. Party, eh? But since I didn't get to sleep until after 3:30 last night, that might be for the best.
Anyway, Gabe just woke up from his nap so I'd best go attend to him!

Mrs. Vander Leek ;)

Monday, June 28, 2010

Another late night

We are not going camping this weekend. I looked on the website reserve.albertaparks.ca for any camp sites available from Wednesday night to Saturday morning and the closest one was in Vermillion. Great, eh? In fact, there were only three campgrounds listed in all of Alberta that had any openings for those days. When I finally resigned to the fact that we would not be camping I called my dad to propose another adventure: The Royal Tyrell Museum! I haven't been there in nearly two decades and I really want to take Gabe to see it. To be honest, I really want Gabe to like Dinosaurs for some reason - not sure why, I just do. So I think it would be awesome to take a day trip there, hit up the museum, see some of the sites and take a crap load of pictures. Tomorrow Matt and I might be trading our car in for a minivan (how cool are we?) and if we do, the new van will sure get alot of test driving in the next week. Not only the trip to Drumheller on Friday but also a potential trip to Calgary on Wednesday for Gabe and I and then a trip to Edmonton on Sunday to visit Matt's sister and her husband.
Oh, and for those of you who may have noticed the time at which this post was written, my reason for being up so late is this: Gabriel is having nightmares and so even though he was in bed and fast asleep by 9:30, he kept crying in his sleep and woke himself up a couple times, so now I am holding him in hopes that he will go back to sleep and that that sleep will be a more peaceful one. I must say, it looks as though I will be up for some time. In fact, I just moved this party downstairs so that I could sit in the comfy chair and watch Friends. Ugh.
I went shopping today, which was pretty successful... I went to Warehouse One where I bought a tank top and two really cute necklaces and then I went to HomeSense where I got some presents for some friends. First off, I found a copy of Jessica Seinfeld's Deceptively Delicious for $5. I love that store!! Oh and I bought some soaps there - regular $8 on for $2. They smell fantastic! I bought three sets of them - one for me, one for my pregnant friend and one to keep around for a spare present. I picked up groceries and flowers for my sister-in-law and then booked it home to get dinner ready to take down to Auxano. It was a really good night down there. After Auxano one of our friends came over to put some stuff in our shed and he ended up staying almost 2 hours to talk. That was really nice actually; a good wrap up to the day.
Anyway, I'm typing with one hand and it's really quite tedious so I'm done for now.

Mrs. Vander Leek ;)

Sunday, June 27, 2010

French Feast

I actually slept Saturday night! Not that I really had any doubt that I would - I'm just so happy that I did! I did however sleep in a bit Sunday morning so we were kinda late for church. We got there in time for the sermon though! After church we had two of Matt's siblings over for lunch to use up some of the groceries I had bought for the shower that I didn't go to. Oh, and we used up all of the bread I made Saturday except for one bread-bum (I coined the term) which I am pleased to say shall be my breakfast today: toasted with a skiff (I didn't coin the term) of margarine and a smear of strawberry jam. Bread-bum toast is the best. Anyway, as soon as I ate lunch I started making my eclairs. I realized about half way through that I was using a different recipe than I normally do and I realized at the end that I much prefer my normal recipe. The one I used yesterday was Martha Stewart's pate a choux recipe. It's very detailed and very good but not as good as my normal one: Better Homes and Gardens 1950 something Eclair recipe. The dough cooks lighter and I like the method better too. After I made the pastry I made a chocolate glaze that was part of Martha Stewart's eclair recipe and it didn't work quite as well as I had hoped. The chocolate and the syrup stayed separated so it looked all chunky. And it never really set. I read the recipe four times over and couldn't see anything that I had done wrong so I blamed it on the stupid heat. The temperature in our house was 27 degrees.
Anyway. We got to my inlaws at 4:30 and I started making the crostini and the escargot right away. People started showing up and the party started! We started with the crostini, escargot and some endive spears our friend made with salmon, dill, garlic and cracked pepper. Oh yes, and we started off with a couple nice wines, too. Then we cleared the table and brought out some really nice steaks. Once those were done we brought out the cheese! Ooh and some amazing wine: a Chateauneuf du Pape. There were a ton of different cheeses: an aged gouda, camembert, brie, a couple blue cheeses, a very soft goats cheese and a semi-soft cheddar. After the cheese was cleared out we had dessert! Creme brulee, almond-pecan meringues and my eclairs. Oh, and an amazing port! Wow! I had never had port before and I was kinda expecting just another red wine... until I smelled it. It smelled so caramelly! And the taste was amazing! I like port :)
Anyway, after dinner a couple people left, which kinda sucked, but then we looked at pictures from their France trip, which rocked.
Anyway, now we're planning for our camping trip for the long weekend! We're going camping with my parents Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. It'll be nice to take Cash out on a vacation with us since he didn't get to go to Canmore. Having said all of this, I just checked for campsite reservations and there are absolutely no campsites available in Central Alberta. Great, eh? So maybe we won't be going camping.
Anyway, I've got some errands to run today, including putting together a present for our friends who are going to have a baby any week now!

Mrs. Vander Leek ;)

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Soooo tired

Well, it's now 11:45 on Saturday night and I am bagged. After pulling an accidental all-nighter last night I had a busy, busy day with my hubby. My bread finished baking at about 9 this morning and it was perfect; the best bread I've made in a long time. And I made an extra loaf for my in-laws! At around 10, Matt and I went to the Farmer's Market. It's actually the Public Market because not enough farmers show up anymore. Anyway, we saw a few people we know there and I bought some herbs: Lemon basil, dill and chocolate mint! From there we went to the car dealership! And we found a van!! We haven't bought it yet, but we will :)
We then went and hung out with Matt's family. His sister and I made creme brulees and Almond-Pecan Meringues for our French dinner tomorrow! I actually just found out about this French dinner today, but apparently it's going to be a load of fun! I'm responsible for escargot and eclairs! So, after church tomorrow I need to make eclairs! (Lots of exclamation marks in this post...)
This evening I fell asleep on the couch for a whole half hour! (that's 30 minutes of sleep in the past 39 hours) Matt mowed the lawn and when I woke up I planted my herbs and weeded my garden. Unfortunately, in the 10 minutes it took me to do that I got bit by a gazillion mosquitoes. It was so bad that I actually had trouble breathing from the swelling. Great, eh? Oh, and the right side of my face was numb for half an hour. Matt then went out and picked up pizza for us (lazy day dinner) and a movie. He rented Extraordinary Measures. Kay, I tried to watch it. In the first 15 minutes I was bawling. The first sequence is this guy's daughter celebrating her 8th birthday. In the next scene he's reading medical journals about his daughter's condition and it says that patients only live up to 9 years. That's when I lost it. So I played games on the computer while Matt watched it and I still cried 4 more times. Good movie though!
Oh, and I salvaged a knitting wreck. I was knitting a scarf as my first attempt at cabling. Unfortunately, about 1/3 of the way through I dropped a stitch and couldn't figure it out. So, I cast it off and stitched both ends together, and guess what? It's the perfect size for a coffee sleeve! Oh and it's adorable!
Anyway, it is finally time for bed. I'm certain I'll sleep tonight!

Mrs. Vander Leek ;)

Good news, Bad news

Good news: Gabe slept through the night.
Bad news: I did not.
I did not sleep at all last night. I kept laying there thinking "I really need to fall asleep soon or I won't get enough sleep" but I just never fell asleep, period. I kept hearing noises too, just when I was about to fall asleep and it would wake me up completely. Oh, and thanks alot to the guy on the sports bike who decided to make the cop chase him... that wasn't loud at 3 a.m. at all!
Good news: I got to see the sunrise
Bad news: I saw it from the wrong side of the night
More Bad news: I didn't get to see the partial lunar eclipse.
That's right, there was a partial lunar eclipse at 4:15 last night and I was on the verge of making Matt set the alarm for it but I thought I'd be more responsible than that. Since I was still awake at 4 a.m. I thought that maybe I would just go see it but I was right in the middle of trying to fall asleep again so I just stayed in bed. However, as I told a friend earlier this week, 5:30 a.m. is my favorite time of day so when I finally got up at 4:45 and went and sat down on our bench seat in our bay window it was gorgeous watching the sun come up and seeing the world in my favorite hour.
Bad news: I won't be going to Calgary
Good news: n/a
Consolation prize: Maybe we'll invite people over since I have so much food in my house.
If you remember, today is the day of my cousin's bridal shower in Calgary, which I was scheduled to prepare some food for. The plan was for me to drive down to Calgary this morning, make the food, have fun at the party and drive home right after. As of 4:45 this morning, that plan has been cancelled. My head is aching already and I know that by 9 a.m. it will be a full-fledged migraine. There ain't no way or no how that I am going to risk my baby's safety by driving when I've had zero sleep and my head is throbbing. So, as soon as it is a reasonable hour to do so I will unfortunately have to phone my sister and tell her that I will not be coming. I feel really bad about this though. I was really looking forward to the shower and I know my sister was counting on my help, however, she's had a number of people volunteer to make more food so I am not the sole food provider, and in fact, everything that I am providing can be pretty much done without. I did however buy all of the food to make italian sodas, Mini #5 Crostinis and fruit pyramids, so perhaps tonight Matt and I will have people over to help reduce the amount of produce in our house.
Now on to strictly good news. I made bread! That's always good news :) I just punched it down and in half an hour I will be putting it into pans to rise and about 45 minutes after that it will be baking! So it'll be done just in time for Matt's breakfast (that is, unless I can coax him into taking me out for breakfast because my poor little head hurts so bad). Now that I'm staying in town Matt and I will probably go to the car dealership and check out minivans - something we've been meaning to do for sometime now but haven't had a good spot in our schedule to do so.
Oh, and other good news? There's leftover Waldorf Salad from last night and now Matt won't get to eat it all himself; I'll get some too!
Oh, I've got a bit of a serious aside for this post too. We were watching the news last night and there was obviously some coverage on the G20 happenings. The big thing they were reporting on last night was the "Red Zone": a barrier around the G20 location that if anyone approaches they must produce identification and can be searched. Well, the report last night was accusing the government and the police force of wrongful action in assuming the "War-Time Act", as one overly indignant bypasser called it. There's complaints about human rights violations and since it wasn't actually voted on by the people (it was passed in cabinet) there are complaints about it being "undemocratic".
Might I suggest some people get the sticks out of their bums?
First off, from a strictly legal and strictly business perspective, when someone is entering your property (house, office, land, etc.) for the purpose of business, you are responsible for more than due care. That means, if some crazy whacked out accident happens to them while they are on your property, they can sue you. Even Acts of God need to be prepared for. How much more care ought our government take for business which involves peace-talks and which brings in dignitaries from the 20 leading nations of the world? 20 of the most important people in the world are at this summit (more than 20, but let's use that number for arguement's sake), there have already been two explosive-related arrests made that have been directly linked to the summit, and people are fussing because they can't stand within 5 meters of a fence without a policeman politely coming up to them and asking to see some ID? Really?
Secondly, I hope people grow up. If you do anything which might impede somebody's happiness, or anything which might make one feel the least bit constrained, there's always someone who will claim it to be a human-rights violation. Big picture, people. Let's worry about security and then being able to walk wherever we like.
I really think we all ought to pray for the whole G20 goings-on. Pray for the world leaders, pray for the discussions, pray for the policemen who are working overtime and are busting their butts to make sure that the conference center remains a secure location, and pray that the protests and demonstrations will be peaceful.
Anyway, I'd best go check on my bread and see if I can put it into pans yet!
Good morning!

Mrs. Vander Leek ;)

Friday, June 25, 2010

Waldorf Salad

What a fun day! I've got to admit, it was fairly boring to begin... I cleaned some, fed Gabe ALOT of food and gave him a bath - at which time I got completely drenched. I finally got an email back from that realtor about the second cafe and it is located in town. However, that's all he would tell me until I sign a bunch of forms. Mostly it's just confidentiality stuff and general information but it turns out that he wants to be both the buying and selling realtor if the deal works. I don't even know how that would work legally... So, instead of filling out those forms I am going to call our normal realtor - the guy we used to buy our house. He's an awesome guy, goes to our church and is totally straight up. He pointed out a crack in the foundation of one house, talked us out of a more expensive house and found us a house for the same price as the first one but without the crack in the foundation. So, we totally trust him, whereas this other realtor we don't know at all and we're kinda getting weird vibes from him. Therefore, as of Monday we will be dealing solely through our own realtor. Oh, and I think I know which cafe it is, but it's a total assumption. If I am right, however, it would be an awesome location and the building is fairly new and in really good condition. I can't help but do menu planning and I have ideas for a whole bunch of fun things for the place including original artwork from friends of mine and I can hand out business cards for them too. Oh, and I could finally sell my syrups. I'd have complete access to a licensed, commercial kitchen. It would be sweet.
Anyway, Onwards and upwards. After that Matt phoned to tell me how much he loves his job and won't be changing it any time soon, which is always a nice conversation to have. I love hearing that what my husband has to do 9 or 10 hours a day, 5 days a week is actually enjoyable for him as well as a good way of paying the bills.
During that conversation Matt let me know that he wanted a summery-type meal for dinner. I was just bracing myself to go to the grocery store when Matt's sister called from Edmonton to say that they were driving in to town to have dinner with us and then driving back tonight! So, Gabe and I ran to the grocery store, where I picked up the groceries I needed for the shower tomorrow as well as stuff for dinner. We ended up having Waldorf Chicken Salad Croissants and pretzels and lots of fun, summery drinks. I'll post that recipe for the Waldorf Salad at the bottom of this blog post because it really is fantastic. And it's perfectly summery :) Matt loved it!
Well, tomorrow morning I'm packing Gabe up, filling up on gas and coffee and hitting the road. As soon as I get to Calgary I'll stack the fruit pyramids and get the Italian Soda station ready. About an hour before the party I'll start making the crostini and then topping them: honey-mustard sauce (which I prepared tonight), lettuce, ham, tomatoes and cheese. Yummy! Once the shower is done I'll be packing right up and driving home to spend the evening with my husband. We've had a pretty busy week so we haven't even had an evening at home really since Saturday.
Well, that's about all that I can post about today. I really want to post all my ideas for my cafe, but in the business world that's a really dumb move! So I'll settle for posting that Waldorf Salad recipe!
Waldorf Chicken Salad:
3 chicken breasts, cubed and cooked
1/2 golden delicious apple, cubed
1/2 c. grapes, chopped small
1 stalk celery, chopped small
1/4 c. mayo
1/4 c. plain yogurt
1 1/2 tsp lemon juice
Mix altogether and serve cold on a buttered croissant with lettuce!

Mrs. Vander Leek ;)

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Surprise good day!

What was going to be a crappy, lazy day actually turned into a reasonably good, very productive day. I had started writing a post this morning that talked about how I was feeling crappy, how I've had migraines for the past couple days and how I could hardly eat I was so ucky. I didn't have much more to write than that so I never published the post. I'm glad I didn't. After I deleted that I decided to pack up my baby and head downtown. I went to City Hall and paid our property taxes and then I went to the library to find a book (which they didn't have and a creepy guy was following me to the elevator until I stared him down). I then went to City Roast to pick up some ground coffee (Tanzanian peaberry - a very smooth and sweet medium roast). Since we were only a couple of blocks away we stopped in at my dad's work and said hi (he loved that). I came home and threw some of my lasagna that I froze in the oven and cleaned my kitchen. Matt had to work late but my mom and I were going shopping tonight so she came over for dinner. We then went to Fabricland, Walmart, Petsmart and Homesense and I only spent $30! That's totally a record for me! I took my mom to Dairy Queen and got her some ice cream as a thanks for hanging out with me and while I was there I grabbed one for Matt too hoping it wouldn't have melted completely before he got home from coffee with a friend.
Matt got home just after I did and we spent the evening just kicking around. I posted some pictures on Facebook (ones from a few months ago since I haven't done it in a long time) and now we're watching an episode of Friends before bed.
My legs hurt from the walking and the weather change (stupid arthiritis) but my house is clean(er), I got a lot done and I can now rest easy knowing that I wasn't completely useless today.
I took Gabe to the park yesterday but unfortunately the mosquitoes were out in full force. For those of you who don't know, I am allergic to mosquito bites. It's not a severe allergy but whenever I get bit, the bites swell up to about two inches across. When I get a bite on my face, that half of my face goes numb. Fantastic, eh? Well, I lasted about 10 minutes and then I had to pack poor Gabe up (he had so much fun on the swings). I had four bites down one arm and each one was huge. And itchy. Stupid bugs. However, that experience was enough to ascertain that Gabe did not inherit my stupid allergy. So now he's safe from the rubber allergy (thus far, I did grow into that one though) and the stupid mosquito allergy. He had one tiny little bite of his forehead and didn't seem to bother him at all.
You know what I love about summer? The fruit :) Well, I suppose that is one of many things, but it's certainly a big one. Between Gabe and I, today we had cherries, canteloupe, grapes, bananas and plums. I've got blueberries, strawberries and peaches in the fridge too! How awesome is that?!
Well, I'd best go get an ice pack for my legs. Sigh... what a good day!

Mrs. Vander Leek ;)

Tuesday, June 22, 2010


I am experiencing a bash-your-head-against-the-table moment. Matt and I have been toying with the idea of buying a commercial revenue property. I looked up some listings tonight and figured I'd hop over to the Businesses for Sale listings just because. I recognized one of the ads on there as the cafe that I worked at through high school and college... I love that place. It's fantastic! It roasts its own coffee, makes the best bread and the most fabulous honey mustard sauce. It has been offered to me a couple of times but due to my financial situation, and then my life situation, I had to turn it down. Well, the price has been lowered, it's still there and I still want it :( If I bought this cafe I would be so happy and so tired, and so exhausted, but really so freaking happy. I've always wanted it (and its recipes). I'd take Gabe into work with me and hire some really good help, then Matt would be able to finish his business degree and go on to seminary without us being entirely broke.
The big issue is money still. Banks don't give loans for cafes. Even CIBC's Small Business Loan has a little disclaimer saying that it's not available for restaurants or cafes. We would need to get investors. Now, we know a couple that would be interested in investing but we never talked to them about it because, quite honestly, we're too independant. We'd want to run it all and not share the authority.
The other thing is, for some reason or another, Matt and I have already decided not to buy this place - twice. But it's there and it makes me want it! ARGH!
There are other options... there was another cafe listed for significantly less. It'd be more of a ground-up situation, but hey, that's my thing. I love a good challenge. I'd make up a whole new business, new menu, new everything. But I'd be even more tired, more exhausted and not necessarily more happy.
Oh, and we'd be broke for the next three years.
Well, I just needed to rant a bit. Matt was too tired to talk about it tonight so I didn't get the chance to get it off my chest.

Mrs. Vander Leek ;)

Lemon Loaf

I baked today! Yay!! I decided to whip up something that my hubby would like alot and over the past couple of weeks I've been discovering just how much he likes lemon in baking. I took a recipe for a pound cake (yah, I used a recipe, not just a pound of everything) and I turned up my nose to the lemon alternative they had printed. They recommended that I use lemon yogurt instead of sour cream. Great, eh? Who has lemon yogurt? And why not sour cream? Sour cream in a lemon cake is fantastic! So I kept in the sour cream, added lemon extract instead of vanilla and threw in some lemon zest. Since I didn't add any lemon juice I wanted to make sure it was lemony enough for Matt. I also wanted to make it more than just a plain lemon loaf so I greased the loaf pan, sprinkled sugar in it and put really thin slices of lemon across the bottom before I put the batter in. Now that it's done baking, the lemon slices are baked in across the top of the loaf, the rind has become really soft and totally edible and the little bit of sugar has made it much more edible. Now when I serve it for dessert tonight I'll top it with either a lemon glaze or whipped cream and strawberries! Yum!
Today I need to go over to the grocery store (cherries and chicken breasts are on sale) and maybe hop over to fabricland as well. I need to get some fleece to make those baby blankets with. Oh, and if Gabe will allow me to, I really ought to mow the lawn for my husband. I love him so much :) Oh, and I also need to clean out our office for him. Every since we moved in the office has been more or less a dump space for stuff we hadn't unpacked yet, but especially moreso since renos started. We want to have our spare room set up so that we can have guests over and that means people typically need to be able to walk into the room. Currently, they cannot.
Oh, and we talked over menu planning for my cousin's shower yesterday! I have been relieved of a couple duties and the full menu is now set. I am in charge of ice cream sandwiches rolled in lime and coconut, italian sodas and crostini sandwiches! Much easier than I was worried it would be. Well, little bit worried, little bit hoping :) I like a good challenge.
We may end up having company over for dinner this week so I'm thinking roast chicken (I have a whole lot of chickens in the freezer) and maybe Pots de Creme for dessert - that or a fruit lasagna (phyllo for noddles, pureed strawberries, mint in place of basil and brie and asiago) Yummy!
Well, I'd best go feed my little boy some lunch and then run to the store!

Mrs. Vander Leek ;)

Sunday, June 20, 2010

The coming week!

What a nice first day home from vacation! We slept in too long to go out for breakfast before church, but we had time for a Timmy's run and got there before service started (for the first time in a long time). We hung out with Matt's family after church and then went out for dinner this evening! It's been a nice, relaxing day. Oh, and we have groceries now too!
I'm finally ready to start thinking about the coming week. Tomorrow is Auxano and since we haven't been for the past two weeks it's going to be great getting back there. We may even pack a picnic dinner and bring it down there. I'm hoping to get all of my laundry done tomorrow from the trip. Tuesday will be a baking day I hope. I haven't baked in a week and a half! Oh, and Tuesday evening hopefully we'll hit a pond for some fishing. Wednesday may involve a day trip to Calgary! I need to go there for a couple of reasons. For one, my darling cousin is up from Montana for a couple of weeks so I really want to spend some time with her. For two, I need to pick up my sister's ice cream maker. In what may prove to be a moment of weakness, my sister pledged her ice cream maker to me. I forgot to pick it up when I was at her house this weekend and I was really hoping to make a gelato for my cousin's shower on Saturday (I'm thinking either peach/mango, earl grey or pistachio). Now, I've never made anything with an ice cream maker and to honest, my sister has never used the maker so I don't know if it even works. I'm slightly nervous and I definately need to test drive the recipe before I serve it to a dozen people.
Now that I have started on the subject of menu planning I must confess it's hard to stop :) Weather report pending, I'm planning on a very summery menu. If the gelato doesn't work out for some reason I shall be making lime-coconut ice cream sandwiches. Put a bit of vanilla ice cream in between two vanilla cookies and then roll the edges in coconut with lime rinds. Yum! As I mentioned before I'm planning on serving fruit pyramids too. I need a savoury something so I'm thinking it may be in the form of either pita chips and lettuce rolls or crostini something or others. It will be an alcohol free event so I need to figure out a signature mocktail. Maybe we should just set a theme for the party? I think that may be a good idea. I'll chat with the planner about that. Oh, and of course I need to have baking. Petit fours finally perhaps? Or maybe eclairs! Oooh! Oh, by the way, I had an eclair from a bakery in Canmore and I must say I was disappointed. I make much better eclairs. And I wouldn't charge $5 for them either. Okay, so we'll work on a theme for the party and then I'll finalize the menu.
This week I'm also going to make some baby blankets. I found an adorable fabric from a quilt shop in Canmore that was perfect for a little baby boy blanket. We also owe our friends a baby present so I got enough to make one for them too! And, once I block my scarf that I knit last week and finally see how good it is I may decide to give that to them too.
I also plan on having people over to our place to eat all of the baking I will make on Tuesday! So it's looking like it's going to be a pretty fun week!
Now to go to bed so that the week can get started!

Mrs. Vander Leek ;)

Saturday, June 19, 2010

I'm Home!!!

I'm home! Yay!!! I'm almost more excited to be home than to have been going on vacation! It was a fantastic week, in spite of it raining almost the entire time we were gone. First up I had my choir reunion concert. It was a great time and it was awesome to see everyone again, and to sing again. As soon as the concert was done (literally - I finished my last note, we walked off stage and right out the door) we hopped in the car and drove to Canmore. On Sunday we had sun and knew that it wasn't going to stick around for long so we went to the beach! Gabe loved the water - a little too much actually. He tried to crawl right into the lake and wanted to try swimming so he kicked out his legs and let go with his arms. Fortunately I caught him before his face hit the water but we had to keep him out of the water after that. Matt and I both got sunburned pretty bad that day. AND that was the end of the sun... It started pouring the next morning. We drove out to Banff and spent the day shopping. We went for lunch out at The Spaghetti Factory which is always yummy. They have the best Spumoni. The next day we did very little more than playing games in the timeshare's rec room. Pool, ping pong, air hockey... we went swimming too. On Wednesday we finally got out fishing and that was a fantastic time! Matt caught 6 fish. Everyone who went caught at least one. They were taking everything we threw at them - bait or no. There were also some herons circling the lake the whole time. We went out for dinner that night to the Trough and it was fantastic as usual! Thursday we went out to Canmore for some more shopping. Matt and I went into this adorable gourmet food market - Moutain Mercato. Shelves of oils, vinegars, salts and other delectables. Matt picked out a couple of cheeses for later. We went and played some pool (I did miserably) and then went for a quick swim before dinner with my aunt and uncle who came out from Calgary for the day. Right after dinner, my dad, Matt and I went out fishing again and had very different results. I got one bite the whole time we were out. My dad caught a fish but had very few bites otherwise. We almost didn't mind though because the first day was so good. On Friday we went out fishing one last time and now it was my turn to have a great day. I caught 7 fish! And all of them were a nice size too! And the best part, I caught them all on a red and white spoon. I hooked 3 others who got off too soon and had tonnes of bites too. We got back around 9 and then packed up and headed out to Lake Louise for a quick "hike". We went for a walk around the lake with the babies. It was nice to get out and the rain stopped just long enough for us to finish the walk. Then today we packed up and checked out by 10:30, went into Canmore for a bit more shopping (we bought some teas!) and then went to Calgary. I had a golf game as part of my cousin's stagette. It was actually really awesome. I played a half decent game and the sun stayed out long enough for the game to finish so I got another burn, but it's okay, it'll be gone by tomorrow. As soon as I was done the game we hopped back in the car and came home. In between all of that I managed to finish reading Mansfield Park and I finished knitting my scarf! It's gorgeous by the way :) We saw lots of wildlife. Moose, deer, tonnes of elk, bighorn sheep and bears!
I am so glad to be home. It's going to be great to sleep in my own bed and it's going to be great to get back into the swing of things. I'm not even planning yet what I'm doing this week. I'm just basking in the delight of being home!

Mrs. Vander Leek ;)

Friday, June 11, 2010

26 hours to bliss

I am pleased to announce that my husband had the day off of work today and thus has been available to help me with my chores. My whole week has kind of been a bomb - migraines, crabby baby, lack of anything getting done, but too much to do to just sit down and admit defeat. Tomorrow we go on vacation to Canmore for a week and while that seems like such a short time away, so much needs to happen before we leave. For instance, tonight I have a rehearsal for my high school alumni choir. This rehearsal will be 2 hours and will be fantastic fun, but for some reason the thought of having to learn and memorize 4 songs tonight is rather stressful to me. Then, there is a barbque. Again, mucho fun, I'm sure. All of Matt's siblings will be there, either because they are participating or because they are spouses. I'll get to see a load of people I haven't seen since high school too. However, this barbque may go quite late so I need to make sure that everything I need to have done today is done before I go to my rehearsal at 5:00. Tomorrow morning at 10:00 there is another rehearsal. Then I volunteered to sell tickets at the door (smack me, someone.) and then the concert starts at 1 and then I volunteered to set out snacks for the intermission (smack me again, please.). At some point before the concert ends around 4 I will sing my four songs with the alumni choir. Then I'm sure I'll end up volunteering to stay and clean and we hit the road for Canmore. Of course, in order to leave for Canmore from the church where the concert is being held I must have the entire house clean, every bag packed, the car loaded up, Gabe fed something to tide him over and everything ready for my sister-in-law to housesit our place. So, in 26 hours from now I will be on vacation, and not a moment sooner.
Of course, as soon as I am on vacation it will be simply bliss! I plan to fill my car ride to the mountains with knitting and pleasant conversation with my husband (I love talking with my husband. Really, he's a fantastic person to converse with and even though I've known him for years and we talk every day, we never run out of things to say to eachother). I had to restart my holiday knitting project by the by. I had started it using inferior yarn and when I realized how pretty it had the potential to be I restarted it with some high end wool. It's going to be a scarf with alternating knit/purl boxes running as a border on the ends. I'm about a third of the way through now.
We're taking our laptop on vacation but I have no clue about whether or not we'll be online. If not, ta ta for a week! God bless you and keep you!

Mrs. Vander Leek ;)

Wednesday, June 9, 2010


So you know that headache I wrote about this morning? Well, after heaving my luggage upstairs from our crawl space it became a full-fledged migraine. Party, eh? I hadn't taken anything for it yet and by the time it hit I didn't have the strength to go downstairs to even get tylenol. Fortunately Gabe had just gone down for his nap so I didn't have to worry about him, but the lights were on and the window was open and both of those factors did not contribute to my comfort. So while I ought to have been cleaning and packing I instead was laying on my bed with my eyes closed and a pillow over my face. By the time Gabe woke up however it had subsided enough that I could go get some tylenol and start working. So, even with that set back I still managed to get both the master bedroom and Gabe's bedroom clean. After that work however I was spent again and the tylenol was wearing off. I spent the rest of the afternoon sitting on the couch. Matt came home and we made KD for dinner. We definately have not done that in a long while. My head feels mucho better now. Matt vaccumed and I did some laundry. I also started my knitting project for Canmore. I always like to have something to work on out there and I had planned on knitting another baby hat, until I realized that I already had three made and had never given any of them away. So, I went to look up some more patterns and I got inspired to knit a baby scarf with alternating squares across it. It looks really cute - I got about a quarter of it done already tonight. If I should happen to finish that in Canmore I'm also going to knit booties. I'm so nervous about making those though. Knitting patterns totally intimidate me so the only bootie ones I'm brave enough to try involve stitching them up. While I'm in Canmore I'm also planning on reading alot. I'm bringing out Calvin's Institutes of the Christian Religion and hopefully I will finish the first volume while I am out there (the first of 7).
I might have mentioned previously that I was in charge of meal planning while we were out there. I got that all done a couple days ago. The first night, we're having pizza buns! Nice and easy and quick and not alot of fuss. The second night it's hamburgers, third is pork chops, fourth is barbqued chicken, the fifth is stirfry (for whomever is around - most of us are going out for dinner so for us it will be more like duck, ahi ahi or rabbit). Anyway, the sixth night we will be having steaks with a roasted garlic and pita appetizer and the final night we will be having fajitas to use up all the leftover steaks and chicken and veggies. Meals are always a family affair when we're on vacation - planning them, making them and eating them. Breakfasts totally depend on what the plans for the day are. If we're fishing we'll probably end up having cereal or bagels - something quick so that we can get out on the lake bright and early. If we're shopping and have more time then we'll usually have bacon and eggs. Hiking days call for breakfast burritos! Oh, and I'm bringing out scone mix so we'll have those one day. For snacks I'm bringing out stuff to make that black bean salsa that I made for Gabe's baby dedication and my mom's tea party. It is sooo good and so easy to make. I'm also bringing out my magic bullet to make fast dinners for the babies: squash, yogurt and fruit purees, anything with peas...
Oh, did I mention that I am weaning Gabe this week? Party, eh? He's got too many teeth for nursing to be a safe activity anymore so now he's on milk - straight up. I'm working on cold turkeying him and thus far it's going okay. He screamed at me for nearly half an hour today shortly after breakfast, however, he fell asleep right away. Tonight again he was quite fussy but fell asleep soon after. Let's just hope tomorrow is as good!
Speaking of tomorrow, that is my do-all day. I need to finish packing, clean the kitchen, clean the bathrooms, put away any remaining laundry and make another Walmart trip. I also need to make scone mix, pay bills before holidays and make dinner of course. None of those will be too difficult or time consuming alone, but they do add up quickly.
Well, it's now close to bed time and my little boy needs to be cuddled and sung to.

Mrs. Vander Leek ;)


My head hurts today. Very badly. I wasn't feeling great yesterday and now I feel even less great. Part of the reason I wasn't feel great yesterday was the sucky circumstances. If you read my previous post, you'll know all about the late-opening grocery store fiasco. Well, after it didn't pan out for me to be as productive as I had wanted to be in the morning I got a call from my mom saying that the fish at the hospital weren't doing to well and that I needed to pick up some stuff for the tank. So, when Gabe finally woke up at 10 I got him fed, dressed and ready to go and we headed off to do errands. Oh, and the car was almost completely out of gas so I had to stop and fill up and the clerk was really rude and the guy in front of me kept talking and talking and talking and it took me 5 minutes to pay even though there was only that one guy in front of me. Then we went to the pet store. That was an in and out operation - maybe too quick for Gabe's liking however. He barely got to see the fish. Then we went to the hospital. I had troubles finding parking and then when I got in my mom took Gabe and walked away so that I could work on the tank - the only problem was I didn't have keys to open the drawer that has all the tank supplies in it and my mom knew where the spare key was but I didn't know where she went. All in all, I spent about 45 minutes at the hospital. By this time Gabe was starting to get sleepy. I made the trip at the grocery store as quick as I could and picked up some mini maki rolls for lunch while I was there. I got home, put away the groceries and then went and sat with Gabe in hopes that he would, very quickly, go to sleep. Well, he didn't. Not for 40 minutes. I, in the mean time, ate my sushi and it was awful. They had overcooked the rice so it was basically maki mush rolls. Seriously, I make better sushi than that. I did make myself an Irish Cream Cremosa - an italian soda with irish cream flavor and a dallop of cream in it - so that was a good thing about yesterday. Anyway, when Gabe finally fell asleep I went and cleaned the kitchen up and then baked and made it messy again, but at least I got my two-bite brownies done. As soon as the brownies were all done baking I needed to make dinner: Lasagna. I had never made lasagna before yesterday! Seriously! I looked up two recipes: one from Chef at Home and the other on the back of the lasagna noodle box, just to give me an idea of what needed to happen, and then I went to work.
First off I fried up some diced shallots with the ground beef. When the onions were fairly well cooked I added about a cup of diced orange pepper and a big clove of garlic. When the meat was nearly fully cooked I added another clove of garlic (one definately was not enough) and a full carrot, grated. Then I poured over it one can of crushed tomatoes and one can of tomato paste. I let that cook for a little bit over medium heat and then I added probably a 1/4 tsp chili powder, 1 tsp thyme and 1 tsp basil. I don't measure when I cook so those are definately approximates. Then I added some salt and pepper and let it cook a little bit longer. Next came the cottage cheese. The first time I had lasagna with cottage cheese in it I thought it was amazing and I always knew that when I made my own lasagna recipe up that it would have cottage cheese in it too. What I didn't know is that you should mix an egg up with the cottage cheese. Not sure why, but you should :) Anyway, I started layering next. One of the recipes I had seen said to have two full layers of meat/cottage cheese/mozarella and two more layers of meat. I decided differently. I did a layer of meat, then noodles, more meat, all of the cottage cheese, mozarella, noodles, meat, mozarella, asiago. It worked great! I then cooked it at 350 for about an hour (oh, and I had it covered with tin foil that whole time) and then I took the tin foil off and let the cheese get all crispy. I really liked it! And so did Matt although he wanted me to put some tabasco sauce in it (I usually do with my pasta sauce).
Anyway, we went to bed late last night thanks to our little monkey and then I just could not wake up this morning and when I did it was painful. So today I need to catch up on all the stuff I didn't get done tomorrow and today's list too. That means cleaning the living room, our bedroom, Gabe's bedroom, packing out suitcases and folding laundry. Party, eh? I think my first task should be to make a very big pot of coffee. Oh, and my voice is going in and out so I really hope I don't lose it before our choir alumni concert this Saturday!

Mrs. Vander Leek ;)

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Weird, weird morning

What a weird, weird morning...
My first reaction when the alarm went off this morning at 6:30 was to tell Matt to hit snooze. I had a really sucky evening yesterday, what with the screaming baby and the creeping up head cold, and we stayed up pretty late listening to a Mark Driscoll sermon (on Mary - it was really, really good), so it just seemed natural to hit the snooze button. However, Matt failed to hear me - he was still asleep. I went to tell him again but I lifted my head a little bit and saw that it was actually sunny outside. Well, that was enough for me. I decided to get out of bed and start my day. I asked Matt what time our local Save-on-Foods was open at in the morning and he said 7. My duties today are to bake, bake, bake and clean a little. There's a Ladies' Retreat this weekend that, while I am not attending, I agreed to bake for. So I need to make 4 dozen of my two-bite brownies and 3 dozen muffins, however, before I do so I need to pick up a load of cocoa and some bananas. The cocoa I have been buying in bulk lately because you can get 3 times as much in bulk for the same price as one package. Anyway, after having a slight misunderstanding about how soon Matt would be leaving for work (right away meant in an hour) and not being able to find the keys (they were in the pocket of a hoodie folded up in a laundry pile in the basement) I was off.
It was about this time that I had to come to terms with the fact that the sun I had seen earlier was the only sunlight I would probably be seeing all day. Still raining, still ugly. But that was okay, I was going to be super productive today, right? Wrong. Well, it may still be right, it just won't happen quite the way I thought it would. The stupid grocery store doesn't open until 9. They changed the hours. It used to open early and close late and now it opens late and closes early. But I had driven so far, so early in the morning! How could it be for no reason??? There was a Timmy's in the parking lot but I had already made coffee at home... But, there was also a McDonalds in the parking lot. For the record, one of my favorite breakfasts in the whole wide world is a McDonalds BLT Bagel. I really love them! Their hashbrowns I could do without, but those bagels are quite fantastic. So I got a bagel for me and a McGriddle (ugh.) for Matt and came home. Now I am waiting patiently (?) for my darling husband to wake up so that we can have breakfast together and for my darling baby to wake up too so that I can feed him, change him, get him bundled up to go outside and drag him with me to the grocery store when it opens at 9 this morning. Oh yes, and did I mention we're out of milk? I never let us run out of milk. I actually meant to go get some last night after Auxano, however, I did not go to Auxano (see above explanation). One of my Amish Loaves sure went to Auxano though :) Since I didn't even see the wrapper I sent it in come back I'm assuming it was well received.
Oh, and I would like to make a brief political comment. Michael Ignatieff is a fear-monger and a goon. I was listening to the news this morning and it was talking about how the new federal budget is set to be released. They talked about the Liberal Party leader's reaction to the new budget and he said that it was a very clear sign of abuse of power by Stephen Harper but nothing worth forcing an election over. Seriously? What sorts of things do you think merit forcing an election over if not the abuse of power by the Prime Minister? Oh, wait, I know the answer: pay cuts that affect you directly. The NDPs and the Liberals threw a huge hissy fit last year when their campaign budgets were slashed even though the Conservative party slashed their own budget on a much larger scale - and yes, I know that the Conservatives still had loads of money for campaigning because, well, they won the election, but really, what a stupid thing to force an election over. Who cares? How does this affect voters? Responsible, well-informed and critical voters will research for themselves who to vote for and not wait for a TV commercial to tell them who to pick. But when you throw out the words "abuse of power" does that not imply something much more scandalous and sinister? Does that not make you think of nazis and communists from ages past? I love Stephen Harper. You should have no reason to doubt my trust in that man as the leader of our country, however, you should also have no reason to believe that my dislike of Ignatieff is based on my love for Harper. I'd think he was a wishy-washy, spineless, brown nosing, fear-monger even if he were a conservative. When the recession hit the US, Harper, like the good economist he is, tried to evade panic in the Canadian market. The only thing that could make the recession hit our country was panic. If we reacted wisely but moderately we could have side-stepped it. But Ignatieff took the whole "the sky is falling" route and helped usher in a full fledged recession. If you're a Liberal, God bless you. Seriously, if I were in the States I'd be a Democrat. This is no bash towards being a Liberal, but it is a bash towards their leader. I must admit, they've had some real losers as party leaders in the past and Ignatieff is shaping up to be just as promising as them.
Anyway, that was my rant and I hear my husband up so I am going to finally go eat my breakfast.
Ta ta

Mrs. Vander Leek ;)

Monday, June 7, 2010

Fun Weekend

What a great weekend! It was a long weekend for us too! Matt took Friday off of work so that we could get to Calgary in time for his Men's Conference. Before we left town we picked up the fish for the hospital and got their fish tank set up there. From there we hit Timmy's and hit the road! We got to Calgary around 2 and didn't have anywhere to be until 4 so we went shopping! We went to the Le Chateau Outlet and man, I love that place. I needed to get some new jeans and I've had troubles finding jeans that fit me well, but their jeans fit me perfectly. Plus, they were only $20, marked down from $80. I also got a cute white blouse for $20 too (regular $50). Matt got a pair of jeans too for $20. I'll have to go back there next month to get a dress for my cousin's wedding at the end of July. I don't think I'm going to buy clothes anywhere other than there from now on :)
Matt had a great time at the conference on Friday night and then we were up at 6 Saturday morning because he was so excited about going back to the conference. I dropped him off then hung out with my sister a bit before we went to my grandparents' for lunch. After lunch we went to a PartyLite party, and I bought things! I flipped through their whole June Catalogue and didn't see anything I really wanted so I figured I'd just get some scented tealights. Well then I flipped through their small Summer booklet and saw 4 things I wanted to get! I settled with two - one was a driftwood looking candle holder that's totally gorgeous. The other thing I got was a present for my mother-in-law! Her birthday isn't until late Fall but it was just one of those things that totally reminded me of her. After the party I dropped off Gabe at my sister's, picked up Matt and then we went and picked up Peter's for dinner! mmmmmmm... It had been about 9 years since I had Peter's. I think was only the third time that I had it. I got a chocolate strawberry milkshake... yum! After dinner we went down South to see my cousins! We hung out with them for a while before going to see my cousin's new house - which was gorgeous by the way! Once we had gone through every room twice (really, gorgeous!) Matt and I headed back up to my sister's place. She wasn't feeling great. We were supposed to stay at home Sunday morning and watch our niece so that my sister could sing in the worship team at church but since she was sick she was going to stay home from church so we didn't need to babysit. So Matt and I decided at 11:00 Saturday night to drive home! We wanted to go to our church and to sleep in our own bed. So, by 11:30 we were packed and leaving Calgary. We got home just before 1. Poor Gabe slept most of the way home (he had a weird nap day already...) so he didn't even wake up when we took him out of the car and put him in bed. Sunday we woke up a little late so we missed a bunch of church - we got there just as the sermon was beginning. That evening we hung out with my parents and talked alot about our plans for our vacation in Canmore! While I was over there I made my weekly to do list. Today my list said that I had to do a butt load of laundry, make my Amish Friendship loaf and clean the basement. Right after Gabe had breakfast I made up the loaf (using butterscotch pudding instead of vanilla and I added some butterscotch chips too!) and now I've got the laundry going. My sister-in-law is housesitting for us next week so we've got to make sure the house is clean!
Well, Gabe just fell asleep so I'd best tackle the cleaning portion of my list.

Mrs. Vander Leek ;)
Mrs. Vander Leek ;)

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Yucky day.

Well, Gabe didn't sleep through the night, but that was mostly my fault. Matt and I stayed up talking until almost 1:00 and Gabe had been in bed since 9. He started tossing and turning alot and at one point he started whimpering in his sleep. I looked in on him and he had turned himself around in his crib and had his legs sticking through the slats and one of his feet just kept kicking away... it was really cute but I could tell he wasn't really comfortable. I picked him up and laid him back down and that's what woke him up. And then he had troubles going back to sleep. So I didn't get much sleep at all. I woke up a bunch of times through the night and I'm exhausted. Also, I had a shower right before bed and my hair was wet when I went to sleep... it's awesome. And by awesome I mean awful. Like, Medusa.
Needless to say I shall be avoiding everyone's line of sight until it is fixed lest the worst should happen.
I'm helping my sister with the cooking for a shower this month. It's going to be a girly garden party so I was thinking Italian Sodas, Fruit Puree Sodas, some pita chips, Petit Fours and a fresh fruit pyramid (tres Pride and Prejudice btw). I'll work on some other ideas but that's the foundation for the menu anyway.
I'm feeling very blah today. My brain just isn't there. I can hardly be inspired about planning that menu even. It's yucky outside which means no gardening, it's messy inside which makes me feel like I should clean but I feel so blah I just don't want to. I think I'm just waiting for tomorrow really. Tomorrow I get to go to Calgary, and tomorrow I get to run errands with Matt and buy fish for the hospital and see my sister and maybe even go clothes shopping before we leave town. We'll get up early, have fun packing together and hit Timmy's on the way out of town... It'll be really nice. It just seems so far away. I do have things I need to get done before then, like I need to rearrange our crawl space so that one of our friends can store some stuff in there while he's out of the country this summer, and I really need to do more laundry folding (which is what the big mess in the house is right now). But I really just want to sleep. Which is weird. Did you know I actually dislike sleep? I mean, I obviously see it as something that needs to be done and so I don't try and avoid it entirely, but if I'm having a nap in the middle of the afternoon you can tell that I'm feeling royally crappy. Sleep is a waste of time to me. I'd so much rather read, or cook, or play a game, or talk, or really do almost anything rather than stay in bed - particularly when the sun in shining. Natural light wakes me up more than anything (except maybe Grapefruit juice) and when the sun comes through the window at 5:30 in the morning I totally feel like jumping out of bed and starting the day. Matt disagrees on this point unfortunately so I have to make sure I don't wake him :)
Well, I think maybe I'll turn on a movie and fold some laundry. That's pretty much slacking, right?

Mrs. Vander Leek ;)

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Homemade Ice Cream!

Last night Matt and I went over to visit some of our friends who are getting married this summer. We've been trying to schedule a get-together for some time now but could never find a time that worked so when we saw eachother on Monday night and found out we all had the next evening free we jumped on it. When we got to their place we found out that they were making ice cream for us! They had picked up an ice cream maker at Value Village and had been playing around with different recipes lately. They said it only took half an hour to make if the bowl it gets made in is good and frozen and man, it was fantastic! They made just plain ice cream, so no chocolate or chai or anything like that, but it was sooooooo good. So now, I'm going to go find an ice cream maker! I have loads of recipes for gelato and ice cream that all require an ice cream maker and I've always loathed those recipes because they look so good but I can't make them, so I'll get an ice cream maker and I finally will make them!
Today I need to do some baking. A few months ago I decided to try out a recipe from a magazine. The article flouted them as being the world's best cookies so I was hopefully that they'd be pretty good. When I finally had all the ingredients (there's a few things in them that I don't typically keep in my house) and made them, I was a little disappointed. For one, they were not the world's best cookies. They weren't even the best cookies I had made that day. And they were a bar, not a cookie anyway. So we ate them all up, I ranted for a couple days about what a let down they were and that was that - I thought. Turns out the magazine did lie about what they were. They said they were the world's best cookies, but actually they are the world's most addictive cookies. I crave them all the time now! I've figured out what it is too. It's the umami. There used to be only 4 tastes that people were supposedly able to recognize: sweet, sour, bitter and salty. Lots of people didn't see the gaping hole that was savoriness, so a few years back now they named that gaping hole "Umami". Anyway, sorry about that little lesson. Back to my story: the umami flavours in the "World's Best Cookies that Weren't" were from the dark brown sugar (that smokey taste from the molasses) and the almond extract in it too. So now I make sure that every month or so I have dark brown sugar in my house, along with sliced almonds and almond extract so that I can make these addictive cookies. Aside from those today I also need to make Matt some monster cookies with mini M&Ms in them.
I have a victory to report: Gabe has officially slept through the night 3 nights in a row! Unfortunately, it apparently takes humans 12 days to make anything a habit, but whatever, this is a victory for me.
Yesterday Matt came home early from work so I took the opportunity to go grocery shopping without Gabe. I must confess, it was a lonely chore without him. I must also confess that I bought so much I wouldn't have had room for him in the cart. It was Co-op's Warehouse sale so I bought a bunch of canned fruit and vegetables and something I never get: Boneless, skinless chicken breasts. With chicken it is almost always much, much cheaper to buy Bone-in and skin-on, even when you factor in the weight difference of the bones. But yesterday was an exception. They had their 4 kg boxes of the chicken breasts on for really cheap and it was cheaper to buy that then it was to buy all the breasts with all the bones attached. When I got home I quickly found that my fridge was too full, as was my freezer. So I cleaned out and organized both of them. Matt sure was happy about that.
May I again, just say how much I love ClubHouse? Yesterday while walking down the spice aisle I noticed some more ClubHouse mixes: Chipotle Pepper Chicken Marinade, Baja Citrus Marinade, Pad Thai mix... I picked up a few different ones and tested out the Baja Citrus on some of those chicken breasts last night. It was really, really good! Next time I'll bake some asiago on the chicken too, but that's really the only thing I would change.
I am so excited for my vacation in a couple of weeks, although everything that needs to be done before then is starting to weigh down on me. But when I'm all done what I need to do and I finally get to go on vacation, it will be fantastic! Swimming everyday! Playing tennis with my husband! Going on hikes with my family! Whole days spent sitting around a lake fishing... Man it's going to be amazing. It is every year :)
Well, Having just complained about how much I need to get done, I suppose I'd best go do it, eh?

Mrs. Vander Leek ;)