Tuesday, October 31, 2006


Halloween's always been one of my favourite days of the year. All the fun decorating the house, wearing costumes, putting together little treats for all the neighbourhood kiddies...

This year is our first year celebrating Halloween as husband and wife. This is our second Halloween together and around this time last year, Hubby was thinking of ways to propose :)

Last year, hubby only had two trick or treaters (our two nieces!), as houses are quite far from each other. It's not like in the city where houses are so close and kids can walk from house to house. Our township has a Halloween party for the kids at the community hall, but parents bring their kids to houses of friends and family as well.
This year, we had a record of EIGHT trick or treaters!! In Toronto, I always had around 300 kids to get Halloween treats for. I was so excited when I saw those eight little cuties this year! Of course, two were our nieces, but the other six kids were our friends' kids.

Hubby and I dressed up this year. I did our make-up. Yes, Hubby actually let me put make-up on him! He was a zombie and a scary one too! He had (fake) skin peeling from his face and crusty dried blood all over his mouth and chin. I was a creepy cat. Too bad we didn't take any pics of our scary faces! The kids were terrified and giggled after the initial shock.

Our house was lit by candle light and a sign on our front door said "Welcome, children! Enter at your own risk! There's a basket of candy on the chair. Help yourself." The kids entered our haunted house, to see lots of candles lit and and there was opera playing in the background. The music probably creeped them out! I don't think they've ever heard opera before! LOL! As the kids entered the house, I crept up behind them and said, "MEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEOWWWW!!" and they all jumped! Then I guided them to the basket of candy, and as they reached in to pick their treats, Hubby jumped out from behind the arm chair. He scared them silly. The poor kids! It was a fun night and they all enjoyed their tour through the scary house. Now we're known as the crazy couple, since none of the other couples in our township got all dressed up and made a haunted house. Unfortunately, this means we're going to have to out-do ourselves next year!
Monday, October 30, 2006


our two little munchkins, Fred and George.

We're still getting used to having the little guys in our home. They sleep all day and are up all night! They are soooo playful that they wake us up at 4AM with their running around and thumping. They roll over each other and try to attack our feet when we're sleeping. (cute, eh?) Nala, our older cat, doesn't care for them much and Chance, our dog, just wants to play with them. They're petrified of him though...even if he is a gentle giant!

PS. We should have named them 'Stinky' and 'Scarface'! LOL
btw, this is what happens to couples who don't have kids yet! We blog and post pics of our feline and canine babies! *sigh* lol
Saturday, October 28, 2006

Stolen meme

from Jill
(stolen from Toya)
So, the idea behind this meme is that you bold every one of these things that you've done and leave the rest in standard typeface.

01. bought everyone in the bar a drink
02. swam with wild dolphins
03. climbed a mountain
04. taken a ferrari for a test drive
05. been inside the great pyramid
06. held a tarantula
07. taken a candlelit bath with someone
08. said "i love you" and meant it
09. hugged a tree
10. bungee jumped
11. visited paris
12. watched a lightning storm at sea
13. stayed up all night long and saw the sun rise
14. seen the northern lights
15. gone to a huge sports game
16. walked the stairs to the top of the leaning tower of pisa
17. grown and eaten your own vegetables
18. touched an iceberg
19. slept under the stars
20. changed a baby's diaper
21. taken a trip in a hot air balloon
22. watched a meteor shower
23. gotten drunk on champagne (cheap champagne)
24. given more than you can afford to charity
25. looked up at the night sky through a telescope
26. had an uncontrollable giggling fit at the worst possible moment
27. had a food fight
28. bet on a winning horse
29. asked out a stranger
30. had a snowball fight
31. screamed as loudly as you possibly can
32. held a lamb
33. seen a total eclipse
34. ridden a roller coaster
35. hit a home run
36. danced like a fool and not cared who was looking
37. adopted an accent for an entire day
38. actually felt happy about your life, even for just a moment
39. had two hard drives for your computer
40. visited all 50 states
41. taken care of someone who was drunk
42. had amazing friends
43. danced with a stranger in a foreign country
44. watched whales
45. stolen a sign
46. backpacked in europe
47. taken a road-trip
48. gone rock climbing
49. midnight walk on the beach
50. gone sky diving
51. visited ireland
52. been heartbroken longer than you were actually in love
53. in a restaurant, sat at a stranger's table and had a meal with them
54. visited japan (I taught in Japan for 2 yeats!)
55. milked a cow
56. alphabetized your cds
57. pretended to be a superhero
58. sung karaoke
59. lounged around in bed all day
60. played touch football
61. gone scuba diving
62. kissed in the rain
63. played in the mud
64. played in the rain
65. gone to a drive-in theater
66. visited the great wall of china
67. started a business
68. fallen in love and not had your heart broken (so far, so good)
69. toured ancient sites
70. taken a martial arts class
71. played d&d for more than 6 hours straight
72. gotten married
73. been in a movie
74. crashed a party
75. gotten divorced
76. gone without food for 5 days
77. made cookies from scratch
78. won first prize in a costume contest
79. ridden a gondola in venice
80. gotten a tattoo -
81. rafted the snake river
82. been on television news programs as an "expert"
83. gotten flowers for no reason
84. performed on stage
85. been to las vegas
86. recorded music
87. eaten shark
88. kissed on the first date
89. gone to thailand
90. bought a house
91. been in a combat zone
92. buried one/both of your parents
93. been on a cruise ship
94. spoken more than one language fluently
95. performed in rocky horror
96. raised children
97. followed your favorite band/singer on tour
98. passed out cold
99. taken an exotic bicycle tour in a foreign country
100. picked up and moved to another city to just start over
101. walked the golden gate bridge
102. sang loudly in the car, and didn't stop when you knew someone was looking
103. had plastic surgery
104. survived an accident that you shouldn't have survived
105. wrote articles for a large publication
106. lost over 100 pounds
107. held someone while they were having a flashback
108. piloted an airplane
109. touched a stingray
110. broken someone's heart
111. helped an animal give birth
112. won money on a t.v. game show
113. broken a bone
114. gone on an african photo safari
115. had a facial part pierced other than your ears
116. fired a rifle, shotgun, or pistol
117. eaten mushrooms that were gathered in the wild
sidenote - where is 118?
119. had major surgery
120. had a snake as a pet
121. hiked to the bottom of the grand canyon
122. slept for more than 30 hours over the course of 48 hours
123. visited more foreign countries than u.s. states (well, more countries than Canadian provinces)
124. visited all 7 continents
125. taken a canoe trip that lasted more than 2 days
126. eaten kangaroo meat
127. eaten sushi (yummy!)
128. had your picture in the newspaper
129. changed someone's mind about something you care deeply about
130. gone back to school
131. parasailed
132. touched a cockroach
133. eaten fried green tomatoes
134. read The iliad
135. selected one "important" author who you missed in school, and read
136. killed and prepared an animal for eating
137. skipped all your school reunions
138. communicated with someone without sharing a common spoken language
139. been elected to public office
140. written your own computer language
141. thought to yourself that you're living your dream
142. had to put someone you love into hospice care
143. built your own PC from parts
144. sold your own artwork to someone who didn't know you
145. had a booth at a street fair
146. dyed your hair
147. been a dj
148. shaved your head
149. caused a car accident
150. saved someone's life

That was fun. Leave me a comment if you do it too!!!
Thursday, October 26, 2006

I know this is a crazy question, but....

does anyone out there who has cats know of a brand of cat litter that will make that funky kitty smell go away (or at least not seem so baaaaaad)???? I love our newly acquired feline babies, but man oh man, do they ever stink! Well, THEY don't stink...they don't smell at all, but their litter box is totally raunchy!! I use a scoopable clumping litter and I clean their litter box every day.

Sorry for the weird post, but I need some help here! Anyone??? If you don't know of any particular brand of litter that will not have that yucky, stinky smell, what do you do to make the kitty litter and surrounding region not smell so badly? Hubby has some green apple scented Lysol anti-bacterial stuff to spray in the laundry room where the litter boxes are, but now whenever I smell green apples, it reminds me of cat litter!!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

twin boys!!!!

The newest members of our family are two cute little fuzzy bambinos! They are so fun (and funny!), sweet, playful, cuddly...and of the feline family. Yesterday, the lady who owns the riding stables up the road from us gifted us the kittens. She heads down south every winter and closes her ranch, so we now have her little guys. They're not really twins. They're litter mates, but they look almost identical. I named them Fred and George because those are the names that popped into my mind when I saw them. They don't know those are their names yet. They just ignore me when I call them. They do respond to "Psssst!" "Come here, kitty!" I wonder if they think "Pssst" and "Come here" are their names??

Now we've got three cats, a dog, and a hundred head (of cattle). The funny thing is, last night, a friend of ours called to say he brought 'doubles' for me and my hubby answered the phone and thought our friend said 'doves'! (Doubles are a yummy chickpea and curry snack type food from Trinidad) When Hubby called me from the living room, he said, "G called, and he has your doves?!?!?!?!?!" I think he honestly thought I'd gotten birds without asking him! Too funny! I assured him that I hadn't gotten more animals to add to our ever-growing brood and that 'doubles' were indeed Trinidadian food. Poor hubby! Since we don't have kids yet, wifey is making sure we acquire more pets!!! I wonder if he's sorry he married me! LOL

Pics of the two cuties will be posted soon.
Sunday, October 22, 2006

is it a yay or a nay?

A friend of mine told me about these tweezers she got that have a built-in light source so you can pluck/tweeze your eyebrows (or whatever you wanna tweeze!) anywhere and have ample light to do so. LA Tweeze has found a solution for those who have a hard time seeing those tiny little eyebrow hairs. Built-in LED light, compact enough to fit in a lipstick case, apparently good grip, slip=proof, etc. My friend says she also bought a lipstick with the built-in light on e-Bay too. I'm ot sure what brand it is though.

While I think the concept is neat, I don't know if I would purchase the LA Tweeze. I get along just fine with my trusty 'ol tweezers and eyebrow grooming stuff my friend Jill recommended.

Anyway, what do you think of this new product? Worth the cash or fit for the trash?
Saturday, October 21, 2006

things to ponder...

1) Ever wonder what to do when you get an e-mail from someone you don't know and when you open it, it says all kinds of weird stuff like how your computer will now be corrupted? Does anyone know what to do when you get something like that? I normally don't open anything that looks suspicious or that's from someone I don't know, but every now and then one of those sneaky e-mails gets through. Do I delete it right away and shut down my computer??? (I JUST opened something weird and am worried it may have a virus...and I'm using my hubby's PC and not mine right now!)

2) When you purchase baby stuff, people automatically think it's for you! Today I bought the most darling little handmade outfit for my brother and sister-in-law's baby (due in March!) and the little old lady who made it said, "Is this for you, dear?" She was all smiley and happy until I said, "No, not this time. Not yet." We talked about how exciting it is to be an auntie though! I'm even thinking of taking up making baby clothing. All the other wives here are into crafts...

3) If you have a Brita water filter thingy, does that really purify your water? How pure does it get? Would you drink tap water?

4) Why do dogs scratch themselves all the time???? My silly little puppy is constantly itching the back of his ear. I KNOW he doesn't have any bugs or fleas because he's been to the vet and he's also taking stuff to prevent fleas.

5) Why is it that many women don't get along with their daughter-in-laws or mother-in-laws? I am sooooooooooo lucky that my MIL and I get along wonderfully. She lives at the farm next to ours and we see each other often enough. She's helpful, sweet, thoughtful...calls me to say she loves me! (awww) She teaches me how to cook hubby's fave meals and how to can and preserve all our fruits and veggies. We even went to a tea and bazaar together this morning. I can't understand why some of my girlfriends have such a horrible relationship with their MILs. I've heard a few nightmare stories!! The FILs seem to be okay most of the time. Many SILs and FILs I know get along well. Are men more easy going than women with these things? My dad and my hubby are buddies. It's so funny...and cute!

6) What would it be like to be a 'lady of leisure'? Meaning, to never have to worry about money...not having to work, being able to pick up and go anywhere whenever you wanted. Hmmm..today Venice, tomorrow Madrid. Maybe somewhere in Brazil mid-week and Australia on the weekend?

7) What would it be like to be a millitary wife? When I taught in Japan, we weren't too far from a few US bases near Hiroshima. Some of us teachers (aka: foreigners) would go to the bases and hang out with the millitary boys. I wondered what it would be like to live on a base while hubby was stationed somewhere. It was crazy being on the base since it was so 'Americanized'. There was a McDonald's, shopping places...there were even bars and night clubs. It looked like I was in the states, only in the background there were army guys with Japanese girlfriends (there were also army guys with their families from the states) and in the distance you could see the picturesque landscapes of Japan. Weird. One never really had to leave the base. It was a whole community in itself.

8) What would life be like if you'd married the first person you ever dated? (Yikes...makes me shiver the even think of it!) LOL

9) What would it be like to live in a different era? I am intrigued with the Medieval period. As romantic and chivalrous it may seem, it was also dark, violent, and harsh. I studied some of this in college, but sometimes wonder what life was really like back then.

10) What would we do if we didn't have the internet? :)
Our grandparents and ancestors never had the internet. I'm sure we'd cope without it, but it's just such a great way to stay connected to the outside world, keep in touch with family and friends who are far away, do research, shop, and so much more! I admit it...I'm hooked. I could survive without the internet, but I wouldn't want to! LOL

How safe are we?

Really, I have been a huge dummy. When we moved up here, I thought that there was no crime in the countryside. I thought it was the safest place to be. Living in Toronto, shootings, stabbings and robbery and all that stuff was on the news on a daily basis, so I was used to hearing about those things. There were drug deals and drug busts across the apartment I lived in, and occasionally the police would visit our complex. I also didn't live in the nicest area of Toronto, so that explains a lot. Families yelling and fighting could be heard on a regular basis. One lady would always end up in the hallway outside her apartment, crying (possibly even beaten), with her children huddled close-by. What a sad reality it was. I was shocked. My folks were so upset with me for moving out on my own when they could provide all the luxuries of home, good cooking, a clean, safe and healthy environment...but being 'of age', I knew I needed to be on my own.

Anyway, when I moved to the countryside, I thought there was no crime. Everyone was really friendly and hospitable. Everyone knew each other. This place seemed so fresh and wholesome. People knew were city folk, because we always locked our car doors. So funny, I thought. "Good 'ol country livin'", I thought to myself. I love it! Well, the other night, we were at a dinner party. Several couples (former Torontonians) had bought property up here and we decided to share a meal and get together. The topic of safety came up, and boy was I startled at what my hubby had to say! There have been a few break-ins in the past few months. People have had cars stolen, money, and other valuables too. One of our friends was robbed recently too. The thieves even helped themselves to her kitchen because it appeared they had been making sandwiches!

This is a place where many people did not believe in locking their vehicles or their houses. People had a trust and relied on the honor system. The tackle shop near us even sells worms and live bait by leaving the stuff in an ice box outside of their shop with a sign that says "Please leave your $2.50 in the jar". Where I came from, I am not sure anyone would leave the money at all. Here, if you lose your wallet at a gas station or restaurant, the owners would call all over the place to try to get it back to you ASAP. Some old general stores still offer credit to their longstanding customers. Everyone waves to each other even if they don't know who you are. There's always a "Hello! How ya doin'?" or a "Good day!" and a smile. Things I was not used to, as in the city I never ever dared to look or smile at people on the subway in case it was taken the wrong way.

Despite all this, I was shocked to hear that there is crime (duh...I should have known- I mean crime is everywhere). Guess I was just a little naive. I feel like the little bubble I've been living in has been popped. I insisted to my hubby that we put stronger locks on all our outside doors. He says the locks are fine and if anyone wanted to get in badly enough, they'd just break the windows. Guess he's right.
Friday, October 20, 2006

very berry torte

After the bountiful crops we had this summer, I picked, cleaned and froze lots of our berries for the winter months. Hubby has a sweet tooth (luckily he works out everyday on the farm and with his saw mill and can afford to eat desserts without ever gaining weight),so here's a quick and easy "not too sweet" and oh so tasty dessert to make with all your yummy berries!

1/2 c butter
1/2 c sugar
3 egg yolks
1 tbsp vanilla
Beat all ingredients

1 c all purpose flour
1 tbsp baking soda
Combine with the above ingredients until silky...no lumps!!
Bake in oven (preheated) at 350 degrees for 20 mins. Cool for 10 mins.

1/2 c sugar
3 eggwhites
Beat mixture until stiff.
Fold in gently, 1/4 c raspberries, 1/4 c red currants, 1/4 c blueberries
Add the fruit and eggwhite mixture over top the cake part and bake for 30 mins at 350 degrees.

Very light and very tasty :)

all in a day's work

Okay, this is going to be a wee bit of a ranting session. First of all, it really, really ticks me off when people from the city call me or email me and say, "Aren't you bored up there?" "What do you do up there?" Ummmmmmmm....It irritates me when they think that because I don't work a 9 to 5 job and commute two hours to and from work like I used to in the city, that I have nothing to do and that I'm bored. Lemme tell ya, there's nuthin' boring about living "up here".

Take today, for instance. I got up at the crack of dawn, hubby and I had breakfast, I cleaned the kitchen, fed the animals, split firewood, loaded the wagon with 5 cords of firewood, picked 4 big bushels of apples, made 11 tubs of applesauce, made lunch for hubby, did some more firewood splitting (we have a lot of orders to ship out this weekend), organized the curriculum for the next ESL session...and all this while hubby was doing his errands, attending meetings and then off to do chores at the barn. Luckily, we had supper at my parents' tonight, so I didn't have to cook :) It's nice to have a little treat once in a while. I was just so beat and my arms felt like jello! No need for Turbo-Jam anymore :)

So, imagine days like this, only combining teaching students English from 9-12 and then again at 1 to 3 PM AND helping with our family business (our quaint little inn...that's very busy in the summer)!! I also do story time at the library on Saturdays, amongst other community things. So, how can I possibly have nothing to do "up here"?

Lastly, (and for once and for all) Manitoulin Island isn't that far north!!! Contrary to popular belief, the Island isn't really far north at all. Where we are on the Island is even more south than Ottawa and Montreal are (but more north than Toronto).

on beauty

Every generation and society has its own idea of what beauty is. Ideals of beauty change as the times change. Some societies worshipped the 'full-bodied', voluptuous, curvy, soft figure, and others glamourize the thin and waif-like form. Trends and notions of beauty change, but it's sad when in our society it's gotten to the point where teenagers and young girls felt that they were too fat or too ugly. Issues with self-esteem and eating disorders are important things to pay attention to. I'm glad that Dove has put on a Campain for Real Beauty to address these important issues.

We have two young nieces, aged 9 and 11. One of my wishes for them is that they never have to feel that they are not smart enough, talented enough, pretty enough, or whatnot. Looking at magazines and seeing photos of gorgeous, flawless models isn't always what it seems like. Lucky for us, our girls are well-adjusted girls. They're going to be teenagers in a few years, so we hope their outlook on these things always stay realistic and positive. They were shocked when they saw the commercial for Dove on TV- the one where there is this gorgeous woman getting her hair and make-up done so her photo could be on a billboard. After all the stages of the beautifying process were done and what looked like a perfect image of beauty, the photo was touched up by the use of Photo Shop!!! We were all surprised!

The photo was airbrushed, tinted, smudged, and the model's neck was elongated, her face was narrowed, her eyes were widened, her lips were plumped....she was totally transformed!! She was beautiful to begin with, but transformed even more so after the Photo Shop touch up. Therefore our nieces saw that magazine models aren't always as perfect as they appear to be. The ad is amazing. Has anyone seen the ad on TV yet?
Thursday, October 19, 2006

I've been tagged

by the wonderful and talented Curiosity Killer. It's a really cool "Know Thyself" quiz, so I decided to give it a go.


What is/are YOUR:
how-to ways to beat a bad mood?
Never-fail lip color?
Personality type (via
Greatest strengths and weaknesses (like in a job interview)?
Names of the trees in your yard?
Mother-in-law's favorite flower?
Names of 4 friends whom you're going to tag

My Answers:
Beat a bad mood = Take a nice long walk with my dog, paint, bake, garden, climb the rock cut and sit amongst the trees, listen to my fave CDs.
Never-fail lip color =
Rimmel London's East End Snob
Personality type via myersbriggs = ESFJ (Extroverted, Sensing, Feeling, Judging)
Strengths = get things done way before deadlines, excellent communicator, work well with others . Weakness: Don't like criticism, even if it's contructive.
Names of trees =
maple, apple, iron wood, birch, white ash, walnut, cedar, and a whole bunch more that I can't think of off hand.
Mother-in-law's favorite flower =
Urgh...definitely not roses, but I'm not sure if it's some type of Iris or maybe even Lily of the Valley. Does this make me a bad daughter-in-law? I know she told me once upon a time, but for the life of me, I can't remember!!!
Taggin' Jill MsMamma Stephen and Elisabeth (since both Curiosity Killer and Dina tagged me, I can't tag them)
Tuesday, October 17, 2006

I'm no advice giver...

A very dear friend of mine sadly looked into my eyes, waiting for an answer. What pearls of wisdom had I to offer? None, really. Wise I am not. She had been struggling a few years now with not letting go of her former love. She knew she had made the right decision in leaving him years ago, but knowing and letting go are two entirely different things. She told me how she'd envisioned their life together and how she hoped one day that he would change. People don't really change just like that, no matter how much you hope they will. From experience, I told her to just let go and move on with her life. As much as I believed what I told her, I knew that she didn't really want my advice or opinion...more just for me to be there to listen to her grieve.

"A" had been with this fellow for a few years and he wasted away what potential he had in becoming someone she deserved to be with. He squandered his money and treated her poorly. With encouragement from friends and family, "A" finally cut the ties. It was a hard thing to do with all the yo-yo-ing back and forth. The tears, the fights, the promises...empty promises. I went through the same thing once, so I knew where she was coming from.

"A" tells me that he has since shown up in her life again. She had started to move on and now he wants to get in touch with her. I didn't know what to say. I felt that talking to Mr. Shitforbrains would just bring her back to where she was and after all the hard work she'd done to move on...it just spelled trouble to me. "Things do get better. You'll find who you're meant to be with. Things happen for a reason. Sometimes things aren't meant to be." All the familiar words I'd received years ago seemed to be seeping from my own mouth.

Can one ever be just friends with an ex? Will there always be lingering feelings and emotions? What would happen if they got back together? Do you believe in second chances (or tenth, twentieth, or a hundreth chances for that matter!)? What would you tell a dear friend in this situation?
Monday, October 16, 2006

an interesting read

The Shunning, by Beverly Lewis, focusses on the events that unfold leading up to the wedding of Katie Lapp, a young Amish woman. Katie lives in a quiet, peaceful Amish community in Pennsylvania, where all the traditions and beliefs of the Amish are still practiced and kept very much alive.

Katie discovers a secret in the attic while looking for her mother's wedding dress. This secret will change her life forever and alter the way she looks at the world around her. This secret will affect all the beliefs and traditions she grew up with and held close to her heart.

This is a story of life, lessons, traditions, family, community, betrayal, hurt...and hope. It's an interesting peek into the life of the Amish and the struggle young Katie must deal with regarding who she is.

This book is not one I'd ordinarily pick up at a book store, but my MIL read it and passed it onto me to see what I thought. I've always been interested in the Amish, but never really did much research on the lifestyle and their faith. Less than 300 pages, this is an easy read to do in a day or so (in between work, of course)!
Friday, October 13, 2006

Kids say the funniest things

A few years ago, when our two nieces were very small, they used to hang out at the hospital after school because that's where my sister-in-law works. One Valentine's Day, little C was putting a whole bunch of Valentine's stickers all over the doctors' office. C even put one on my doc's stethoscope and he didn't remove the heart sticker because he didn't want to scratch the surface that's used to hear stuff with.

He goes in to see a patient and the patient's mom. The patient was a little girl. The doc is sitting in a chair examining the child. He's sitting in front of her and his stethoscope is resting around his neck with the hearing part in between his legs. (I don't know the actual names of these things) Anyway, the little girl excitedly yells, "Mom!!! He's got a hard-on!!!" The doc quickly exclaims, "No, I don't!!!" "Yes, you do!! Look Mom!" The mom and the doc start laughing, realizing she is pointing to the heart sticker on the hearing device dangling in front of his crotch. "He has a heart on his stethoscope...Not a hard on!!!" Poor Dr.B was mortified.

Too cute.


It's starting to get just a wee bit chilly and it's only October! In order to keep nice and toasty warm during those cool nights, I've put our new polar fleece bedding on our bed. Between the Sheets is not a Canadian company, but American residents can order via internet. I'm not sure if Canadians can order, since we got ours as a wedding present. (Our set is exactly like the one in the photo- minus the cute bear)

We absolutely LOVE our fleece sheets. It's so warm and fuzzy and just feels so good --almost too good, since it makes it hard to get out of bed in the morning! I've seen other polar fleece bedding sets in stores like Sears. Many stores that sell all things for the home carry fleece bedding. Prices and quality may vary, depending on which brand you choose.

PS. Happy Birthday, Ed :)
Thursday, October 12, 2006

no time???

If you're like me and have no time to spend heaps of time preparing and cooking meals but want your family to eat healthy, here's an easy 30 minute dinner :)

BAKED FRESH ATLANTIC SALMON on a bed of rice with broccoli:
4 fillets of salmon
a drizzle of EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)
a sprinkle of dill (I prefer fresh dill)
*Preheat oven to 450, bake salmon covered in a shallow pan for 20 minutes or until flaky. Do not overcook. It doesn't take long for salmon to cook.

1 c. wild rice (if you like lots of rice then add another cup)
While salmon is cooking, rinse/wash rice and drain. In rice cooker, add water to your rice. Many rice recipes call for 1 c rice to 2 c water. Therefore, if you have 2 c rice, then 4 c water.

Broccoli, 1 head. Wash and clean broccoli (peel the skin off the stems). Cut florets and stem into nice bite sizes. In a steamer placed over the rice cooker, add broccoli and cover. While the rice cooks, the steam from the rice will steam your broccoli. My rice cooker can have the rice and broccoli ready in 15-20 minutes.

Serve salmon on a bed of wild rice and arrange broccoli on the side.

There you go--easy, fast, delicious. Not cumbersome and so worry-free. This is definitely not a labour intensive meal...provided you have a rice cooker. You can buy them at many home and kitchen stores. Ours was a wedding gift from one of my students and he purchased it at Canadian Tire. Rice cookers are fairly inexpensive, and save a whole lot of time. You don't need to be constantly checking your stove to see if you've burnt your rice! Trust me, I used to burn my rice all the time (not to mention, ruin my pots)!

It's been one week

...since I last posted.
It's been a busy week with Thanksgiving dinners (at my parents and then at my SIL's the next day) and people have been taking Hubby and me to restaurants for supper for the past few days to celebrate him stepping down from his position as president of the board of directors. *sigh* I can't even stand thinking of food right now. Even my belly button hurts! LOL!It feels like my inny is going to become an outy!!

Today's Hubby's birthday, so I've planned a surprise birthday supper for him. It may not end up being a surprise, as I think he's scheduled a firefighters' meeting and practice. Grrrr. Anyway, it's just going to be a family thing so nothing way over the top. Plus, I've got a doc's appointment today (had one yesterday too). Sooooo much testing, bloodwork and an ultrasound. It's driving me crazy. I have a confession: I'm secretly afraid of the hospital and doctor's office. I'm always scared that they'll find something...and do I really want to know if something is wrong? I know. I'm stubborn and silly. I can't help it.
Friday, October 06, 2006

thanksgiving weekend

Every year, as my contribution to Thanksgiving dinner, I make my specialty cheesecakes. It's not like I have a choice in the matter. I'm always told, "This is what you're bringing and nothing else." Good thing Thanksgiving only comes once a year (unless you celebrate Canadian Thanksgiving followed by the American Thanksgiving holiday)! These cheesecakes are not overly sweet (I've reduced the amount of sugar in my recipes) and I try to use ingredients with 'less fat'...but hey, this is cheesecake, so either way, diabetics beware!

Things I'm thankful for this holiday weekend:
-spending time with family and friends
-my little brother coming up to the Island to be with us :) I love that kid!!!
-deer grazing in our frontyard
-my wonderful husband
-gorgeous sunsets
-living on such a beautiful island
Thursday, October 05, 2006


rock because all the good TV shows are on. Thursdays also suck because all the good TV shows are on at the same time!!!

Channel flipping between Grey's Anatomy, CSI and Ugly Betty really, really sucks!!

I saw the first episode of Ugly Betty last week and thought it was kind of funny. My aunt and uncle in Venezuela loved the Colombian tele novela "Betty la Fea" (Ugly Betty). In fact, when visiting them in Venezuela, my mom even got hooked on Betty.

I wonder how the new TV show will fare, considering it has to contend with Grey's Anatomy!!!

Cocktail Umbrella Lampshade

I was thinking of cute little indoor crafts that I could do with my students and my neices. I came across this cute, colorful idea - courtesy of the Martha Stewart Show. My sister-in-law will probably kill me, since she LOATHES Martha Stewart :) Anyway, it's a cute idea and I know my little neices like this kind of girly girl stuff. It's funky cool like that, ya know.

This cocktail umbrella lampshade adds a decorative and creative touch to any room in your home. The idea comes from the Bright Lights Little City company.

MaterialsCocktail umbrellas (amount varies depending on size of lampshade)Glow-in-the-dark paintWire cuttersWaxed paperSelf-adhesive UL-approved mini lampshadeFabri-Tac glueSiliconeFire-retardant sprayClear automotive lacquer25-watt lightbulb
Process1. Dip the top point of cocktail umbrellas in glow-in-the-dark paint; let dry. Cut off the stick part of the umbrellas' sticks with wire cutters.
2. Working over waxed paper, place the first umbrella so that it overhangs the bottom of the UL-approved lampshade, creating a scalloped edge. Glue down.
3. Place the second umbrella next to the first so there is a matching scallop along the bottom of the shade. The areas of the umbrellas on the shade will overlap slightly. Glue down the second umbrella where it overlaps the first.
4. Place the third umbrella above the first two so it overlaps them and creates a triangle. Glue down the overlapping areas of the umbrellas. Once you’ve covered a large portion of the shade, the top row should overhang the top of the shade by about 3/4 inch. Remove the cardboard ribs from the overhanging portion of the top row by breaking them and unpeeling them from the umbrella, leaving just the colored paper.
5. Continue placing the umbrellas in a triangular pattern, following any color pattern you desire. If you’d like to highlight a certain umbrella, place the 4 umbrellas on the shade, leaving a place for the umbrella that will cover these. Glue this umbrella so it overlaps the others with no umbrellas covering its design.
6. To finish the top of the shade, glue together umbrellas where they overlap. Trim the overhanging scallop about 1/4 inch from the top of the shade. Put a thin line of Fabri-Tac glue on the inside of this row, and fold it over toward the inside of the shade top.
7. Patch any gaps or tears with scraps of matching umbrella paper. You can reinforce the edge of the umbrella scallop with a thin coat of silicone, applying it with your finger. Let the silicone dry for 30 minutes to 1 hour. You can use the stick of a previously cut umbrella to apply the silicone to the bottom edges of the shade that your finger can't reach.
8. Spray the inside of the shade with a fire-retardant spray, and let dry. Spray the outside of the shade with clear automotive lacquer. Let dry overnight in a well-ventilated area.
9. Place the finished shade on a lamp base. Insert a 25-watt lightbulb.


I'm not an agressive person, and I don't like violence...BUT I do think Oscar de la Hoya is a hottie!! I saw an interview he did once and he didn't seem like a fighter, but more soft spoken and gentle in nature. He's soooooooo hot! No wonder he's known as the "Golden Boy"!


A friend and I were talking about pregnancy, her children, life, and all sorts of things. She mentioned that she had a miscarriage before she had her three children. We then spoke about D and C's. I was aware of what dliation and curettage was, but had no idea about what she would next tell me. She said that after her D and C, she conceived almost immediately. She said that the lady she shared a hospital room with had lost a baby too, and a few months later, they bumped into each other at the grocery store and they were both pregnant!

Basically, a dilation and curettage cleans the woman's womb. It can be performed on women who a) have experienced a miscarriage, b) have had an abortion, or c) experience extremely heavy menstruation and clotting.
Wednesday, October 04, 2006

I wish

that I had known BEFORE I started all my wedding planning that my aunt in Toronto had opened up a business that caters to all areas of wedding planning! Her site is www.bridestown.com "Toronto's best wedding professionals await you at Bridestown. Visit Bridestown to create the wedding of your dreams in our elegant and hands-on environment."

In all my excitement, I had purchased and rented all the things I needed for our big day...and then one of my aunts said, "Why didn't you ask your Aunt K for help? She has her own wedding business." DOH!!! Too late! Anyway, she got me some really neat things to add final touches to our special day, like a gorgeous lace garter with a jewelled heart and a pewter ring with a lovely caption to hang on our wall. I drooled over all the wedding stuff on her site. There's sooooo much out there...I can see how companies can make a mint on events like weddings! :)

If you live in the Toronto area and are planning a wedding or helping plan a wedding, check out the store (and the site)! You can also see some of the items she and her partner carry in their store at www.hbhwedding.com !!!

I know I'm already married, but looking at wedding stuff is always fun, especially when you have friends who are planning their big day!
Monday, October 02, 2006


I have never been able to get 'into' the TV program, "The Bachelor" (or "The Bachelorette" for that matter). The entire premise of finding your soul mate in such a short time and under such unnatural circumstances...and competing for that person's affection and attention seems to me, totally and utterly ridiculous! It amazes me what kind of programs TV producers come with.

I read that this season's bachelor is a prince from Italy. What would a PRINCE be doing on TV looking for true love? WHY would he NEED to go to such lengths to meet someone? Would he not have ample opportunities to meet a suitable partner through his friends, family, business associates, etc? The entire idea of such a show amazes (and baffles) me.

Perhaps I am just being a bit opinionated. I guess the show is sort of a diversion from people's real lives. I just think it's dumb.

LOL! This said, just to quench my curiosity, I MAY take a look in between commercials and CSI Miami. (Uhh...yeah, I know. CSI isn't exactly "realistic" either- like real CSI's don't solve cases in a day), BUT it's entertaining and oh so full of suspense. My, my...am I ever opinionated tonight! :) We don't watch much TV, but CSI (Las Vegas, Miami and NY) are ones we do watch.

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About the Blog Author

City girl moves to the country, falls in love, and marries a farmer. She tries to incorporate her city ways with her new country lifestyle and blogs to keep in touch with friends, family & students who live far, far away :) Can this city girl go country? Watch as she learns all sorts of exciting things about life on the farm and in a small rural community. *UPDATE* We are now parents! Our baby girl was born on Nov. 11, 2008 (at 28 weeks gestation- 12 weeks premature, but she's quite the trooper)!!!
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Life on Manitoulin: Just a bunch of ramblings from a city girl gone country!

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