Thursday, July 12, 2018

One of Those Meals

On Monday evening we made a meal that just totally hit the spot.  Christopher grilled jerk chicken that he had been marinating for a couple of days.  We had wood chips in the foil to add another depth of flavour.

It started to pour rain while we were outside BBQing, so we had to run in, and then Christopher would venture out into the storm to check on the chicken every couple of minutes.  We brought it in the house in a covered roaster to keep it from getting wet.

On the side we had coconut rice, and bourbon baked beans, which I had cooking slowly in the oven all day.

The three elements paired so perfectly together.

Dessert was a key lime pie with macadamia, graham cracker crust that I had made earlier that day. 

There was enough food for lunches for the following two days, and we've still got some pie left.  This is a meal that I am sure we'll make again and again.

How is your week going so far?  Do you like key lime pie?  Have you had a meal recently that totally hit the spot for you?

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

10 on Tuesday

1)  Our patio is getting so much use this summer!  We sit outside most evenings, basically all weekend when we're home, and I spend a good part of every afternoon reading in the yard.

Our outdoor meals lately have included rack of lamb:

Beer butt chicken (with fennel, mushrooms, and carrot):

And snacks!

2)  Speaking of snacks, Christopher recreated one of his favourite treats from the resort we love in Mexico.  It's not my idea of a yummy snack, but he just loves his anchovies in vinegar, and ate this dish all to himself on the weekend.

3)  We've really been enjoying President's Choice Cold Brew Coffee.  It's good over ice with a bit of half and half, or in a smoothie!  On the weekend we made smoothies with cold brew, banana, dates, almond milk and coconut milk.

4)  Over the past few days I've made three loaves of bread ... I can't stop.

It's chewy and addictive, and I think we're in trouble #carbloading

5)  When Christopher came home for lunch on Friday we had a yummy chicken chow mein dish. 

6)  It's our littlest nephew's 1st birthday today!  The party was on Sunday, and we had a fun time at my sister's place watching him daintily eat his cake, and watching him and our (almost) two year old niece play in the splash pool.


7)  My sister, sister-in-law, the two little ones, my 11 year old nephew Giovanni and I met up today in the park for another visit.  It was adorable to watch them swing and slide.

Niece - almost two!
Nephew - ONE!
Big brother and little brother 💙
Cousins 💜
8)  Breakfast this morning was cottage cheese with fruit (and coffee of course).  This kept me fueled up for a long walk around the lake, and then I had one slice of my homemade bread with butter before heading to the park to play with the kids.

9)  Lunch today was at Skye, a restaurant in the park, connected to the Science Center.  I had the beef ramen, although I was a bit disappointment that they didn't use ramen noodles ...

It was still pretty good though.

10)  It has been really, really hot outside, and super humid and muggy, which I am very much enjoying.  With that brings chances of major thunderstorms though, and we got about 15 minutes of one last night, and now it appears as though another one is starting.  It's nice that they're waiting until the evening, so we can at least enjoy the gorgeous days.

I kind of like an evening storm (if they don't cause damage); they're cozy!

How is your week going so far?  How was your weekend?  Is it storming where you are?  Do you like cold brew coffee?  Have you tried the store-bought stuff?  Would you put cold coffee in a smoothie?

Sunday, July 8, 2018

Thermacell Patio Shield - Our Summer Miracle!

The mosquito population in Regina this summer is three times higher than usual!  For people who love to entertain in the yard, and cook and eat outside most of the summer, we were a little concerned about how we were going to keep the mosquitoes at bay.  As luck would have it, just as my summer holidays were starting, the people at Thermacell offered to send me a couple of Patio Shields to try out.  I quickly discovered they are the ultimate mosquito repeller.

One of these Patio Shields effectively repels mosquitoes in a 15x15 foot zone.  They were a breeze to put together; there are little pads that slide in at the top, and a small butane cartridge that screws into the bottom.

Then you just turn the bottom of the shield to click it on.  Each pad lasts about four hours, and the butane cartridges about 12 hours.  You don't have to use them all at once, and can turn the Patio Shields off when you're going inside for a while, to prepare your food for the grill for instance, and then turn them back on when you head back outside.

There is no mess, no spray, no open flame, no scent, no noise, and they are DEET-free.  They use the same ingredients that make chrysanthemum flowers deter insects.

We have used them on five separate occasions in our backyard now, and have not been bothered by a single mosquito while they've been on!  We've been able to cook and eat outside well into the evening, and even sat outside close to midnight recently without getting a single bite, and while using no other form of repellent.

Needless to say, we are beyond impressed.  We actually just ordered enough refills to last us for the rest of the summer.

We've tried putting the two Patio Shields across from each other on opposite sides of the patio ...

We've put them under the table ...

They've worked perfectly for us no matter where we place them on the deck, as long as we are sitting within the 15x15 foot area. 

Actually, the only time we saw any mosquitoes was when the pad wore out while we were sitting outside.  It takes a couple minutes to let the top cool down so you can switch out the pad, and within those couple minutes the mosquitoes started coming!!  As soon as we got the new pad in, we were smooth sailing for another four hours.

These Thermacell Patio Shields are a summer saver for us, and they will be living on our patio from now on.

Run, don't walk to get yourself one or two; there is still a lot of summer left!

If you are in the United States you can buy your mosquito repeller here.
If you are in Canada, you can buy one here (it's a different style, but same thing).  And the refills from here or here.  Check out the raving reviews people have left on each of those sites as well!

Have the mosquitoes been bad where you are this year?
Are you prone to mosquito bites? 
(They seem to love me, and I react really badly to them too.)

Full disclosure:  The Thermacell Patio Shields were provided to me free of charge.  All opinions are my own.  I just purchased a load of refills, because I am not living without this product this summer.

Thursday, July 5, 2018

Summer Holidays

After a glorious long-weekend, I didn't have to go to work on Tuesday and that made me feel like my holidays were really starting.  I got up around 6:30, and had breakfast while watching the first episode of Big Brother.

Breakfast included fruit, 1 baked egg (with cilantro, kale, olives, and cheese), and a little chocolate chip banana muffin.

I made the muffins on Sunday, and we've been enjoying them all week.

Breakfast today included one, as well as fruit, an egg, and 1 slice of ham:

I had a similar breakfast yesterday, minus the muffin:

After breakfast I've been heading out for about an hour long walk around the lake (door to door).  Today I was enjoying my podcast, so just kept going and did two laps.

I'm home with plenty of time to get started on lunch.  Yesterday I made a venison calzone, and there were leftovers for today's lunch too.


The weather has been so perfect this week, so I've spent some time outside reading and relaxing ...

And we've been BBQing all our dinners!

Caprese salad skewers, jerk chicken, baked potato and brussels sprouts on Monday:


Beet perogies and sausage on Tuesday:

And pork banh mi tacos last night:

The actual amount of cilantro that I put on (after the initial photos are taken):


This evening we didn't have a real dinner, but instead just snacked on cheese, meat and crackers, and had popcorn at the Amazon Imax show that we went to.  Christopher's parents bought us a couple Imax gift cards this past Christmas, which was such a great gift.  We are excited to go to another show this summer.

How has your week been?  Have you been BBQing your meals?  
Any plans for the weekend?  Are you watching Big Brother?