Foiled Again by Nature

A few days ago I found a pair of robins that decided my solarium makes a good home.  I can understand why they’d think that – it’s sheltered, dry and up high.  I also have a vegetable garden nearby with a thriving colony of worms that I’ve been encouraging for years.

The problem is that I planned on redoing the solarium roof this summer, and I just don’t think Mr. & Mrs. Robin would appreciate that.  I’d been debating whether or not to encourage them to find another home before they get too comfortable and decided to quietly check out their progress.  Turns out I’m  way too late.  Not only are they quite comfortable thank you very much, but so are their three little ones, Huey, Dewey and Louie.

Dang.  It looks like the roof will have to wait a few months until someone’s learned how to leave home.

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Happy Insanity

Oh it’s been a busy week!

It’s been raining almost non-stop for weeks, which has caused serious flooding in some parts of the city. They’re calling this a 100 year flood, but weird weather things seem to be happening a lot more frequently lately… Thankfully, we’re not in a flood zone, but I’ve still had to work at keeping the basement dry and the sump pump running. So far, so good, and the forecast is no rain for next week – yay!

And I’m afraid my grandfather-in-law is in the hospital. He too looks like he’s going to be ok, but he has to stay there for a while. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m very grateful for hospitals, the services they provide and all the dedicated, over-burdened people who work there, but having to stay there still sux, and that goes double for hospital food. Soooo, I might have snuck in a batch each of chocolate chip-pecan and oatmeal-raisin-coconut cookies.

Gardening has been non-existent. It just hasn’t stopped freaking raining long for me to get out there and plant something. Besides, even if I did plant something, it’d probably drown. Well, maybe rice would be ok, but I don’t think it’d like our usual three feet of snow this December.  😉

Between all this happy insanity, I’ve managed to actually cook a few things to supplement what’s already stashed in my freezer.  I know it sounds cliché, but weeks like this make me very grateful for everything I have and remind me that right now, I have everything I need.  Blessings to you and yours.

A.W.O.L.

Yes, I’ve been AWOL for a while.  Sorry ’bout that – that pesky “life” thing has been more annoying than usual lately.  😉

The good news is that it’s a long weekend soon, and that it’s spring, and that there’s no “bad” news.  Life is sweet – just busy.  I’ve been travelling for work and finishing the basement and just generally trying to keep up.  I’ve run down my stock of freezer meals though, so this weekend will continue to be busy, but at least I’ll have lots to blog about.

So, until next week, stay happy, healthy and enjoy the ride that is your life.  🙂

Recovering from Vacations

Vacations are wonderful, and I had a great time, but it always seems to take a while to recover from them. Aren’t they supposed to help you recover from the drudgery of the everyday rat race though?  There’s a paradox around there somewhere…

Any-ways… It’s taken me about a week to get back into the swing of things. Having run down everything in the fridge before I left, and not having enough time beforehand to keep my stock of freezer meals full, there was almost no food in the house when we got back. Generally a good thing because I hate wasting it, but it meant I was starting from scratch.

Sooo, I did a lot of cooking last weekend. The list includes:

  • roasted chicken stock (great for punching the flavour up in pretty much everything)
  • gnocchi
  • mini apple cinnamon muffins
  • frozen rice
  • soft bread rolls
  • roasted butternut squash / lentil / gnocchi slow cooker
  • spicy Italian wedding soup – sorta

That’ll make things easier this week while I get back into the swing of going to the gym after work! 🙂

All Quiet on the Blogging Front

snow1

It’s been a quiet blog week, primarily because my life (and healthy eating) have been so unquiet.  You see, it’s cold and snowy and generally icky-miserable (I’ve decided that’s an actual word) here, and it’s much warmer and more exciting down south.  So, that’s where we’re going for a bit.

The upside is I’ll get to see plants again and won’t need a hot water bottle for my feet for a week.  The downside is that that whole “healthy cooking” thing has vanished.  Yep – totally gone.  I did actually use garlic nan bread to make pizzas yesterday (yum!), but other than that, I’ve been running down the freezer and getting ready for our trip.

So dear reader, my apologies for being so quiet – life got in the way and I’m going to be quiet for a little while longer.  After that though, it’s business as usual.  😉

Oh and, before I forget – the picture of snow isn’t actually mine – I got it from Wikimedia Commons.  All other pictures on this blog are mine unless specifically stated.

Freezer Tetris and the Flu

I played “Freezer Tetris” last weekend (also known as reorganizing my freezer). When I was done, I realized I have 7 slow cooker suppers, 11 lunch soups and about 2 weeks’ worth of bread / buns all ready to go, which is a good thing, because both the husband and are sick. Dang winter…

I’m not sure if he’s doing the typical “man cold” thing, but he’s slept for almost two days straight (which isn’t normal, even when he’s doing the “cough I’m sick pathetic” thing), so I’ve mostly just let him be and tossed food, water, tissues and cough drops at him. Personally, after sleeping most of last Friday, I don’t seem to be so bad (which also isn’t normal – I’m usually the sick one).

Oh the joys of freezer cooking and slow cookers. It means I got to do almost nothing over the weekend and won’t have to resort to take out during the next week.

I didn’t abandon cooking completely though, there are one or two recipes I’ve been meaning to try, like Thai coconut curry soup (super easy & incredible) and baked samosas (yum!). Besides, if I cooked nothing, my freezer stocks would be empty next weekend and I’d have to start from scratch (bleh!).

So – here’s to ginger root/honey/lemon tea (and an extra 16 hours of sleep), which I’ve decided to credit to me being quasi-healthy last weekend!  😉 Anyone else out there have any home remedies that keep them healthy?

Back on the Healthy Track Again…

trifleSo after 11 months of being “good” and losing over 60 pounds as a result, I took a break for the holidays.  I knew that I’d probably regain a pound or two (and I did), but I also know full well that I can lose them again and that I needed a bit of a break.  So I indulged… a little.  This trifle was for Christmas dessert.  It’s roasted pear with gingerbread cake, cream cheese mousse and homemade vanilla bean salted caramel.  It was so good and so worth it.  I got the recipes from a few places, because when it comes to occasion desserts, recipes are only guidelines and seriously – go decadent or go home.

The gingerbread cake started out from AllRecipies, but I added a lot more spice than the recipe called for, and the molasses were the “fancy” variety.  (The type of molasses is important – never use “blackstrap” molasses when cooking a cake like this.)  The pears and cream cheese mouse were from FoodAndWine.com, and the vanilla bean salted caramel was from BareFeetInTheKitchen.  The trick to the caramel sauce is to keep it on the heat when you add the butter and cream or the caramel won’t mix. Continue reading “Back on the Healthy Track Again…”