Sunday, May 29, 2011

Surpise Party!

By the time you are reading this my dad has probably turned 70 years old! His birthday is Monday, May 30th.

Happy Birthday Dad!

My sister and I organized a little surprise for him a while back, and on Friday we saw it come together.  We took my dad to a restaurant called Teppanyaki, and he assumed it was just going to be the three of us, as it has been in previous years for his birthday.
When he walked into the private room, he was greeted by family from out of town (some from another province), friends from work, and other loved ones.  

He was definitely surprised!

We ate a wonderful dinner that was cooked in front of us, and then everyone came over to my place for coffee and cake.


This morning we also took our dad out for breakfast to The Fireside.  

I had the New Orleans eggs Benedict.

It has been a wonderful weekend.

Have you ever thrown a surprise party?  
Has anyone ever thrown you one? 

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Cooking Vegan

  There are some vegan recipes that have become staples in our home.  One is a delicious vegan Alfredo pasta dish, that Angela came up with.  I made it for dinner last night.  The great thing about this dish, is that all the ingredients for the sauce are just thrown in to a blender, then poured over cooked pasta and warmed.  It is so easy, and takes only as long to make as the pasta takes to cook.  

If you haven't tried this recipe yet, I highly recommend it.

Another recipe I love is Averie's Caribbean coconut rice with garbanzo beans.  I have adapted this recipe a bit, and used a new ingredient that I bought a couple weeks ago.

Spicy Coconut Rice with Garbanzo Beans
(Adapted from this recipe of Averie's)

2 cups canned coconut milk
1 T ground ginger
1/4 cup Earth Balance (vegan butter) or regular
1 cup regular brown rice
1 heaping T "The Heat is On" PB or more to taste
1 chopped red pepper
1/2 cup pineapple chunks
3/4 cup garbanzo beans

Bring the first 4 ingredients to a boil, then move to the back burner, cover and let cook 40 minutes on low.  Once cooked, stir in the next 4 ingredients until hot and delish!

Both of the above dishes are vegan, but I have also been eating non-vegan things ... like the tuna melt I made for lunch today.

Do you ever cook vegan recipes?  
What is your favourite vegan dinner? - Please feel free to link!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Wine and Cheese

On Sunday evening we had friends over for a wine and cheese.

In the afternoon I baked pumpkin cupcakes with a salted caramel butter cream.

I also made a chocolate dump cake using this recipe, but after taste testing it, I decided it was sub-par, and not good enough to serve.  It just tasted like an average chocolate cake. 
I froze it for the hubby to eat with ice-cream.

I set the table with an assortment of cheeses, cheese fondue, crackers, bread, olives, pickles, cheese, sausage, and the cupcakes.

I used some of the new platters that we had the hubby's aunt bring us home from Mexico.  She lives there, and offered to get us a whole bunch of dishes.  We gave her $300 and asked her to get what she could for that.  We got a complete place setting for 12, as well as numerous serving dishes.  
I am pretty pumped about them!

I donned a pink dress, and pretty feather in my hair (I am thinking of wearing the feather clip for my sister's wedding with soft curls - what do you guys think?)

We put out fresh flowers, lit some candles, opened a bottle of wine, and spent the evening visiting, laughing, and eating with both old and new friends.

Today was a holiday for Canadians (Victoria Day), but tomorrow we are back at work.

How was your weekend?  
Have you ever been to or hosted a wine and cheese party?

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Long Weekend


ey peeps! How are your weekends going so far?

I am enjoying a wonderful four day weekend (Monday is Victoria Day in Canada).

I was planning on doing homework on Friday, but found ways to avoid it. I made almond mocha oatmeal for breakfast, adding in a packet of almond butter that the kind people at Artisana sent me.  It was the best almond butter I have ever tried, and it made the oats extra creamy.

I spent the day running errands, baking, and doing things around the house, forgetting to eat lunch.  When 3:30 rolled around and I realized I hadn't eaten, I juiced some fruits and veggies in an attempt to hold me over until our friends' BBQ at 6:00.  I tried to replicate the juice I had in NY, using 3 pears, 1 beet, 1 chunk ginger, and 2 rings of pineapple

I think I figured out the recipe!

It was a big mistake to not eat anything else, because I stared to feel nauseated and get a stomach ache, causing me to feel sick at the BBQ and not eat very much.

I brought a couple desserts that I had whipped up in the afternoon, including chocolate chip cookies, and a dessert cheese ball served with strawberries.  

This morning we had breakfast at 13th Avenue Coffee House before heading to Saskatoon to visit my mom.  I tried the Summer bowl, with quinoa, mango, almonds, coconut, strawberries, cinnamon, etc..

Soup for lunch and a burger for dinner.

Goodnight!  I am spending my Saturday night like all the cool kids do - curled up on the couch with freshly juiced fruits and veggies, asleep by 10:30 :-)

Sometimes even the cool kids need a night in.

How are you spending/did you spend your Saturday night?

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

10 on Tuesday: Photo Edition

Ten on Tuesday is something that many bloggers do, and I love the trend.  I always read Lisa's, and get the questions/topics from her (and she gets them from someone else and so on).  This weeks topic was particularly fun because it was to be answered with pictures!

Ten on Tuesday: A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

1) My favourite piece of furniture in my home.

Dining table that we got as a wedding gift.
2) My favourite thing on my wall.

Original Painting
3) My bed as it looks right now.

Yeah, we don't make our bed during the week.  Don't judge.
4) My pantry.

5) My favourite piece of jewelry.
(This is aside from my wedding rings)

New necklace that I got in New York.

6) My favourite book.

I have many favourite books, but this is just one of them.
7) My most comfortable shirt.

Worn out Buffalo sweater
8) My messiest room.

My office is always a disaster.
9) My house shoes.

HUH!?  Who wears shoes in their house!!?

10) Myself.

And because I want to, I am going to add a few more photos of things I am loving right now.

Two of my favourite people.


Poblano Pepper Crepes
Leftover from this weekend when we had friends for dinner.  
We enjoyed them again tonight.

New Products I found in New York.


Vegan Overnight Oat Parfaits.

Pumpkin Gingerbread with Spiced Butter Cream - good all year round!

My nephew on his new stool that we bought him to use at our house :-)

What are your answers to some or all of the 10 on Tuesday?
How is your week going so far?
Do you have a long weekend coming up like I do?