Tuesday, May 31, 2011

On The Menu: Baked Vegetable Sanwiches

In my most recent search for tasty vegetarian meals, I found a very interesting recipe called Baked Vegetable Sandwiches on a blog called Finding Joy in my Kitchen. The picture is what got me initially but after reading the recipe, I was sure this was going to be a tasty dish...Boy, was I right!! What a fantastic meal idea and the little one really loved it too. Macho Man even seemed to enjoy these sandwiches! I know I am hooked and would like to eat these everyday :)
I loved everything about the recipe though I did add tomatoes as they needed to be used up and a wee bit more garlic. I think this idea can have endless possibilities and next time,m I am planning to make a Greek version with feta, olives, onions, tomatoes and spinach...Yummy!

Thank you SnoWhite and Frog Prince for sharing this tasty dish :)

Monday, May 30, 2011

Gardening is Hard Work

Well, this was quite the day! I was not a well person :( I spent the majority of yesterday, digging, tilling, preparing and planting. I am very happy to say the garden is planted, well, there are a few more things to go in and the fencing needs to go up but it is a garden now.

Today, I am paying for it. By the time I was finished yesterday, my body was screaming in pain but I figured I would simply have a hot bath and a good night sleep to cure that. Boy was I wrong! I spent the entire day in bed, today. My body was aching, I had a pounding headache and I just couldn't stay awake. Thank goodness Macho Man doesn't work until late, I was really in need of his help. I am feeling much better after my day in bed, but I really need to learn to pace myself.

Who knew gardening would take so much out of me!

I would love to share pictures, but my camera has decided to retire :( Hopefully, I can get a new one REALLY soon.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Tales from the Garden

Well, I have dirt from head to toe and enough under my nails, to fill a sandbox. My body aches, I have my fair share of bug bites, and I have had way too much sun but I think these are all signs of a productive day in the garden! Of course, there is still so much to be done.It was a lot of help having my sister in law over with her little ones for the first day because Miss Z was kept occupied but as soon as they were gone, she was all up in my business...LOL! It was too bad at some points, as she was trying to help out but I did have to track her down a few times. It wasn't so bad, once she found her new love...WORMS!! This is an amazing thing for Miss Z because she usually freaks out over bugs. This is the girl who is afraid of lady bugs. It was really fun to watch how in to the worms she was. She was playing with them, counting them and talking to them. I also took the opportunity to make it a little lesson on worms. She was asking what they do, what they eat and where they live.
Of course, that love only lasted the one day because on the second day, one of the worms she was playing with, pooped on her hand and she was most offended!

Back to the garden...I have been digging and pulling out grass chunks, for the last 2 days and it seems as though I am STILL not ready to plant. I keep looking at my garden thinking there isn't enough space for everything. The first day, was just getting started and my second day was making the garden a bit bigger. I think my biggest issue is that I have no idea where to plant everything, what goes with what and which plants are not compatible. I still have to go out there and add some manure and soil, before I start planting.
HELP!!!! If anyone reading this is willing to share some ideas on where to plant everything, I would be most appreciative! I am really new at all of this and am still researching some things but having an experienced gardener to give advice would be super sweet :)

Just in case, here is what I am planting:
Cucumber
Zucchini
Carrots
Corn
Tomatoes (2 kinds)
Broccoli
Lettuce
Peas (2 kinds)
Beans (2 different green and yellow)
Spinach

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Big Storm

Bright flashes of lightning...Loud claps of thunder...Down pour of rain...Power flickered...Logging off!

Regular programming will return tomorrow with the tales of our garden :)

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The Garden is Calling

I am so behind on getting my garden going. Well, I started a fair amount indoor but I just need to get these plants in the ground! Some of them are looking a wee bit sad and I fear they may not make it :(

Tomorrow IS the day they will be in their new homes! My sister-in-law has ever so kindly offered to come by and lend a hand. I am so grateful for that because I sometimes feel like I have no clue what I am doing. If left to my own devices, I am sure it would all be okay but having the help is very nice.

Tomorrow, there will be pictures to share of my new garden with all the little seedlings in their new home!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Monday, Monday

Well, today was supposed to be one of gardening, and earthiness. Instead, I was one with the grocery shopping! I suppose getting food was really needed and I did spend the first half of the day, lazying about my home, in my jammies :)

The long weekend is over now and we enjoyed it. Our little family spent the whole weekend together, going yard saleing, to the farmer's market, visiting family, to the local Riverfest and enjoying some entertainment. Though ending this long weekend with some sun filled gardening would have been divine, it was still a pretty good time had by all!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

I am Wiped!

We were out and about, ALL day today! We checked out a few yard sales (a few good deals), went to the Farmer's Market, did a bit of visiting, went to a local festival and Miss Z got to go on a few rides, watched some fireworks and now, all I want to do is crawl in to my bed and saw logs :P

That is where I am off to now! Just thought I would pop in here and say goodnight and I hope everyone is having a great weekend!

Peace, love and save the planet ;)

Friday, May 20, 2011

Linky Doos

Today, I would like to share some interesting, fun, crafty and green blogs and sites!

Carbon Footprint Quiz
- How many Earths would it take to keep up if everyone lived your lifestyle?

The Vegetarian Who Hates Tofu
- shares with you some fantastic recipes and life as a vegetarian. Why not try a meal or two a week that doesn't contain meat? It is good for you and the planet!

Hip Mountain Mama - Filled with a lot of fantastic eco-friendly, fair trade, handmade, natural products, apparel and tips! I am sure I have linked this one before, but it is worth posting again.

Vegan Dad - He's a Dad and a vegan...LOL! He shares some REALLY tasty recipes!!! I just took a look and now I am hungry.

Crafting a Green World
- I just found this one today and haven't had a chance to do more than browse a short time, but I saw quite a few great re-purposing crafty how to's.

Chasing Cheerios - some really great schooly activities being shared here, for the little ones.

One Pretty Thing - A great site, bringing tons of crafty tutorials to one convenient place :)

Hope you find something good!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

The Garden is my Happy Place

Today was bad day among the other bad days I have been having but I found a little relief. Something to ease the stress and feel relaxed...in the garden. Okay, so it isn't a real garden yet, just my plants in containers, awaiting their permanent home, but still a good feeling from caring for the plants. I decided, well they really decided by getting so big, that it was time to upgrade the containers. I am sure it wasn't 100% necessary in some cases, as they will be going out in the big garden soon but I think some of the plants really needed more space.

The peas were starting to really reach for one another and becoming tangled. I know, you really don't need to plant them indoor first as they don't handle transplanting well, but I was given some bad info on this one. Although, I have read of other gardeners doing the same with no issue in transplanting. Their roots don't like to be messed with, but I have faith that these little guys will do fine!

My tomato plants are not really all that big but I was on a roll and thought they should have their own space :)

The bean plants are doing well in the egg cartons still but growing big, so I know they will be happy to be planted outdoors soon. I might even move them to bigger pots just in case.

The cucumber, zucchini and sunflowers all look very happy!

I believe this is the weekend that most people begin their garden outdoors, though I think I may wait another week or so. The last time I had a garden and planted the the long weekend of May 24th, there was another 2 frosts. Better safe than sorry this time! One thing I will be doing for sure, is taking apart the old pallets the neighbor offered and making the walls of my raised bed. Thank goodness it seems a lot of the planks have already been taken off, so it will be a lot less work for me...LOL!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Sharing

A little something, something or two...or more :) These are some items that I made for a craft swap that I did last month. I was pretty proud og hoe well these things turned out, as I spent the majority of this craft swap, wonder what the heck I should make. Anywho, here is what I made.

A robot pillow/stuffie
2 small canvas paintings (made with recycled materials)
2 owl mug rugs (almost kept them for myself...LOL)
1 meter of owl fabric and a bar of delicious, homemade smelly soap. Of course, I didn't make the last two things :)

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Saturday, May 14, 2011

What I do When Most are Sleeping


Make late night/early morning perogies!!

I used this recipe for the dough and then winged the rest. Yeah, that's what I do, I wing it :)

I basically boiled about 8 small to medium potatoes and mashed them. Then, I sauteed some onions and a clove of garlic and mixed them in to the mashed potatoes. I let the mix cool for a while and while it was cooling, I rolled out the dough (really thin) and used a glass to cut out circles of dough. Next, I added a small spoonful to each circle, dabbed water around the border of each dough circle and sealed them by pinching. Last but not least, I boiled them in a slow boiling pot and then froze them! I kept some out for lunch tomorrow though.

Yay for homemade perogies!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Glass Dharma Drinking Straws


I am officially a member of the "I Love My Straw" group!! As I mentioned in a previous post, I joined an initiative to get restaurants to stop giving out plastic straws automatically, at My Plastic Free Life. Well, as an incentive, David Leonhardt of Glass Dharma Company gave free glass straws to those who wrote letters to restaurants, asking them to change their policies on plastic straws. We were given one free straw for each letter, up to 5 letters. I only ended up getting 2 out in time but it is still really exciting to get even just one.

The straws came in the mail on Thursday and today we finally got around to trying them out. It was macho Man and I that tried them and I like them far more than a plastic straw. I like the way they look, how thick the glass is, the rounded ends and of course that they are reusable and will last a lifetime. Macho Man was a bit of a skeptic when I first told him of these glass straws, but he too is in the "club".

I love these straws!! They are so interesting and by using them, we are saving the use of thousands of non-recyclable plastic straws. I believe I will have to buy more of these and maybe some as gifts...Wink wink. Everyone needs at least one of these straws, so be sure to check the site...and buy one or more :D

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

I CAN Make a Difference :)

It is always nice to see/hear the result of the changes you are trying to make in this world!

A few weeks ago, I joined an initiative to get restaurants to stop bringing plastic straws to our table, automatically. Actually, not having the non-recyclable straws at all would be the best thing, but baby steps :) I joined this initiative through My Plastic Free Life. What we did was wrote letters to local businesses that give you a straw in your drink, without asking whether you want one or not, asking them to either ask you if you want one or switch to using reusable straws.

I wrote to 2 of my favourite places to eat and I was wonderfully delighted to hear from my brother (his sister in law works there), that one of the places has put a new policy in to place. The servers will no longer bring you a plastic straw automatically, but instead ask you if you would like one. I am really happy about this! Though it may seem silly or so small to some people, it is a big thing for me. First, it shows that one person alone can make a difference and second, I believe that people will opt out of taking the plastic straws when asked. I believe that we don't really think about that straw when we get it and the fact that most people never use a straw at home. Some people don't think to say that they don't need a straw, but if asked, I have a feeling a lot more people will refuse them. I think it makes you think about the fact that it really isn't something needed and you won't miss it if it isn't something you have outside of a restaurant. I know that I never used to think of the straw that came in my drink. I never use straws at home but as soon as that straw showed up in my drink, I used it without a second thought. I have definitely seen the error of my ways :) I really hope that this change will spark more change...Change for the greater good of the planet!!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Homemade Pasta: Taste Test Part One


YUMMO!!!!

This is some seriously tasty stuff and the sauce I made to go with it was truly delicious. A great combo!

I used the homemade garlic linguine and made a vegetarian spaghetti sauce with tomatoes, mushrooms, onions, St. Yves Veggie Ground Round and a mixture of different spices. This was so tasty! I am super surprised at how much Macho Man really likes the St. Yves Veggie Ground Round, he will eat it in anything. This makes me happy...one less fight to have over vegetarian meals :)

I have to say that I don't ever want to eat store bought pasta ever again, not when I know how good fresh and homemade tastes and the texture is different. I really enjoyed the fact that Claudette (brother's mother in law) garlic to the pasta and I plan to ask for her recipe and try some different flavours. She did mention making more and trying out sun dried tomato and pesto. Now these would be super tasty! Maybe if I am sweet enough, she will let me try those as well ;)

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Homemade Pasta

My brother's mother in law is wicked resourceful, crafty and makes some of the greatest things. I was at my brother's place for my nephew's birthday party and towards the end (after much conversation about gardening, growing up and such) we some how got on the topic of pasta and the fact that she makes her own pasta...GASP...A woman after my own heart :) I love the idea of making my own pasta and really want to try it. I just need a few tools. Okay, I don't actually need them, but it would make things a bit easier. Anywho, the Mother in law was telling me that she uses a very simple recipe of flour, water and egg. She also lays the pasta out on an old crib railing, to dry out. What's best, is the different kinds she has made. She made garlic, raspberry, banana and chocolate. YES, chocolate pasta! Apparently it is actually pretty good.

I think that making my own pasta is going to be a must for me. Just one more thing I can make myself and save on the packaging as well as the large amount of ingredients that I can't even pronounce. Of course, I got really lucky and won't have to make my own right now because I was sent home with several flavours of pasta to try out...Woo hoo! I will be sure to let you all know how they taste :)

Friday, May 6, 2011

In A Funk

Looking for my groove....have you seen it?

I am not sure what is going on with me these days, but I just can't seem to get anything done. I have so many plans and so many things I want to do but yet I do nothing! What is up with that? I have always been a crazy procrastinator but this is taking the cake.

Anyone have any organizational tips, motivating ideas, ways to light a fire under this one? I would love to hear some ideas!!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

This is how our garden grows

It is time to show you what has sprouted, since planting on Earth Day. It is so great to watch these little plants grow and know that one day in the near future, they will (hopefully) supply nourishment to my family...Eeeeekk!

We have planted cucumbers, beans, peas, spinach, zucchini, tomatoes...I think that's it but I may have forgotten something...LOL! I am planning to start my broccoli tomorrow and Miss Z will be planting her own little garden of flowers. First on her agenda is sunflowers! She is most excited about her own little garden.
I intended to have more pictures that this, but my camera batteries just died :(
Now keep in mind, I have no real clue as to what I am doing. Well, I wouldn't really say no clue at all, but this is all a learning experience for me, as well as Miss Z. I have learned that I have already made several mistakes and the biggest one was with the spinach. I think I over heated it and it just wilted over and was flat to the soil. I am now going to plant some spinach outdoors, in a large container. I really hope I will actually have an in ground garden and not have to plant all in containers. I will plant in containers if I have to though!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Stay Tuned

Well, I think I have found yet another temporary fix for my computer issues. One that works out way better than my earlier fix.

Many things being done and things to be done, Miss Z and I are overjoyed at the progress of out little garden! We have several things started indoors and they are sprouting quite nicely. Once I dump the memory cards from my camera, I will share the loveliness that is growing food :)

There hasn't been much crafting being done. Tomorrow I will be cleaning this place from top to bottom! It has been a pretty big mess since losing power for three days. There will be much to share as I begin Miss Z's home/re-purposed Summer wardrobe.

Oh, and there will be some fun schooly type activities to share as well. PLease, stayed tuned for goodies to come :)

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Power...At Last!

Well, those were some dark times...Okay, not so much, as I went and stayed with my mother :) We had a crazy windy storm, on Thursday and it did some serious damage to the . It also knocked out the hydro for many, many homes. We were one of those very unlucky places to not have hydro. I am still not really sure of what kind of damage was done, but it left us without hydro for 3 days!

I am back now but of course there has to be some other sort of issue...my computer isn't quite right. I had to do a factory reset a few weeks ago and when I did, I was given a count down of when I had to activate my Windows. Well, I was unable to do that because the key that I have is showing up as unauthorized and now I can't log in to Windows. I am not really sure what my options are, but I am trying to figure out a way to resolve this without having to buy a new computer or shell out a ton of money to buy new a Windows. Here's hoping I can't get this thing working properly!!