Saturday, May 28, 2011

BBQ Beast

What a day! I was sure our energy wouldn't last that long, after all we've been working on the house for a week and a half. So today we brought most of the furniture back inside, glued little felt pads under the furniture's feet, installed the drapes, installed a milkglass rod in the kitchen and a new tp dispenser in the bathroom. We also cleaned a junk closet; funny how crap just seems to reproduce!

And I built the BBQ that we bought last week @ Zellers. I would be so thrilled if it became a Target store.... But we'll have to wait 'till 2013.
Ok back to the BBQ. It stayed a couple of days in the car, because it was too heavy to move....Wednesday we put it outside in the box. It has been raining since, all day everyday ; so this afternoon when I came to put it together, the box litterally melted!


All in all it took me 2 hours to build it. I confess to a lot of swearing! It came with all the tools necessary except a hammer, a pack of smokes and some liquor! It was hot and muggy and I was sweating like an animal, but I didn't let this get the best of me, no siree bob!

Here it is, IT IS HUGE by our standard and even our biggest cover won't fit it!

 To celebrate and break it in I grilled some pork chops. They were juicy and delicious and perfectly cooked.

YUM!

Tomorrow I hope to install some of the new ceilling lights....I'm crossing my fingers! 

Friday, May 27, 2011

New floor deliciousness

This is the old floor


It really was a sub floor that we discovered when we reoved the horrible commercial grade carpet and plywood. See those big grooves? They were always full of stuff and a real pain to clean! It was also in dire need of a good sanding and a coat of varnish if we wanted to keep it; but let's face it  we were as sick of it as the paint on the walls.
As in everything our decorating tastes evolve over time; and everyone is different. It is very important to march to the beat of your own drum and decorate your house to suit your tastes. Here all the window mouldings were made of cheap grade knotty pine (circa 1992 or 3) and we couldn't stand them anymore, so every moulding got the white treatment. Special primmer and 2 coats of paint.
We love it and as my Dad says: Don't forget you are the ones who live there. So the decorating style needs to meet what we like and right now it is mostly vintage!

Can you tell that this is not really wood? That it is vinyl?
It will be so easy for us to clean with our four cats. No more litter stuck in the grooves! And rumour has it that it is warmer in winter! I,ll keep you posted!

Now we still haven't shopped for the skirting,so I hope to find a sale on those.

Tomorrow I hope to set the grill we bought and  to install some new track lighting. Again the existing track lighting was soooo UGLY that we got rid of it before I even thought of taking a pic of them. EEEEWWWW! Can you say overgrown pacifiers?

Now we still haven't try to decorate, but I wanted to share this (maybe temporary) little phone corner!

 Still not finished but I wanted to share this dynamite chair we found a coupl of weeks ago after dance class! I kept screaming OMG stop the car I seeeeeeee a chair we  might NEED!
So we stopped and got the chair, it's a dead ringer for oe we already have upstairs!
As for the cola cooler, I was really happy to score a french Coca-Cola cooler and whithin my budget!

Now can the rain stop so I can start the pool?

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

It's here!

I came home tonight to one of the most beautiful sight. We now have this amazing new floor, it is beautiful. It is so beautiful that I just stood there gawking that before I knew it the sun had gone down and I hadn't taken a picture.
I'm so in awe because of the vinyl flooring technology. It looks JUST LIKE WOOD! YES IT DOES! I couldn't believe it. A lot of care was applied with the wood grain and the color, it is crazzzzyyyyy!

Granted that the bottom moldings are missing. We will buy a more comtemporary shape, and I hope real soon, because we have the bad habit of starting something and then just forgetting about it because roadtrips and thrifting are so much more fun than working on the house!

I must admit that this endeavour certainly has infused some energy in our lives; and as I write this I can hear Dan snoring on the couch. REAL LOUD! The I have working nearly non-stop on this and I'm sooo exhausted that even the American Idol finale or the Moderm Family season finale (hilarious) won't keep me up.

Ok this is it as I'm blogging Ryan Seacrest is about to annouce the winner of American Idol....It is Scotty!

This means that Lauren can go back to being a teenager and loose that (I want hair just like my momma) crazy hair.

I've read that in the fianle of AI most of the votes come from the South. Read the country belt. Which is fine by me, but I wonder why they would vote in such droves on the last night!

So I just realised that: I don't even have a pic of the old floor to show you.....!"/$%?&*(
and that it is nearly past my bedtime! This girl still has to wake up at 5:00 AM get herself ready and a lunch and breakfast too :)  

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Another find and an update.

Yesterday I did find something AWESOME, well to us at least! It was one dollar. I have been yearning for this for a couple of years....


Yep a rack so I can dry the wash on it. I do have a clothes line but it's not very long and i need the extra space. I tell you it is new! And for only a buck! SWEET!

The last find was another amazing bargain at the same garage sale. We bought 2 curtain rods complete with all the hardware and fleur-de-lys end pieces for a dollar each. FANTABULOUS!

So this is what we're working on this weekend. All the trims had a coat of primer and 2 coats of deliciously pristine white paint, the ceiling is done and the living room floor has been removed. The wall with the windows used to be dark blue (dated!) and we decided to tint the primer so we bought some that was supposed to kinda match the paint we choose. Surprise, surprise! The primer turned pink on the wall. It looks really ugly and reminiscent that we did have a pink living room in the early 90's.

There was a lot of trim that was in knotty pine. We couldn't stand it any more. Back in 1995 when we moved in our style of decor was more country than today. Now it's mish mash country ecclectic vintage I want all my furniture to be made of teck now and put Pyrex in all the bookcases.

It should be mostly over by wednesday night. Why? because we're having a new floor installed in the living room and dinning room. I can't wait!
Tomorrow I should work on the pool, the veggie garden, install the A/C and assist the master painter whenever my presence is needed. Oh I might even go and get a new grill to replace the one I threw out friday. I think I'll get some rest at my job on tuesday...lol! 

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Fiddleheads, Thrifty Finds and Kitschy Lunch!

Here up north, it's a long weekend: Fete des Patriotes in Qu├ębec and Victoria Day for the rest of Canada. Usually we pack the car and head to Maine or New Hampshire and even to Ontario....But not this year.

We are painting the living room and dining room and the staircase....It was long overdue!

But first things first! It is fiddlehead season and I couldn't resist. I love the green wild taste. It tastes like the forest.

Fiddleheads are the furled fronds of young ferns.

You need to blanch them then cook them in a skillet with a bit of butter. I added some cayenne and salt and pepper.
It looks even better in a sweet Pyrex casserole!

Even if we had a lot of work to do today we had to run some errands....and lo and behold we came accross a HUGE garage sale, I just had to stop because let's face it I'm a total addict and I haven't found mucho cool stuff in a while!

I was rewarded with this:


A 70's pitcher and a melmacesque(no stamp) cream and sugar set in a lovely shade of salmon. I say melmacesque  but it really feels like Melmac.

I also found a red pouch filled with stuff for a quarter. The stuff was porcelain brooches ,a brooch and earrings set- lovely with rhinestones and roseries, quite a few!

Pictures later.

Now for lunch I was in a totally vintage,thrifty mood, so I made sandwiches....


We each had one half with pastrami and the other was ham.

They were served with pimento olives and vintage sword cocktail picks. I got a box of those still sealed in my fave church basement for a dime last year. They were made in Korea for F.W. Woolworth. Now i believe the last Woolworth was closed about 25 years ago in Montreal. It was on Ste-Catherine street, when it was a real shopping street, not just shoes and cheap and ridiculously small clothes.

We painted all through the afternoon and I also worked on  the BIG 2011 DE-CRAP-A-THON.

More painting for us tomorrow!

Sleep tight and don't let the bedbugs bite! :)

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Bye, Bye Old Friend!

Well it had to happen sooner or later....All the signs were there! The uneven cooking ,the low temp, the difficulty lighting up....

Yep the grill was done, over, finished!!! It was not a high tech, state of the art, expensive grill....We didn't need one. We just wanted something to grill some steaks....We had gotten this little guy for under 100$ about 6 years ago and it even had a side burner! I made a lot of home fries on that burner and a lot of bacon! Nothing says weekend breakfast like bacon cooked outside! NOTHING!

                               Last September a big tree branch fell on the shelf and bent it pretty bad.

Bad pic and rust! EEEWWWW!

And let's face it it won't stay lit! I light it go inside, go outside with the meat and the damn thing is off, cold as death :(
I love to just throw some meat on it for a quick supper! This one is going to the trash tomorrow....and I will buy a new one shortly (finances permitting!)

Oh and it's still raining here and there's nothing in the thrifts so I feel envious of all your fab finds!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Poffertjes, Carnival and the smallest pizza place EVER!

So today it's a total hodge podge of stuff. but if you put them all together, the common denominator is JOY!

Last year I won a giveaway from Kim . She's a U.S native living in the Netherlands. The beautiful giveaway included poffertjes mix, a special pan, a sqeezy bottle, chocolate and an amazing handmade apron. I swear it's the most amazing apron I've ever seen. It totally covers you, you couldn't get dirty if you tried!

So i've used the apron (A lot) and ate the chocolate (delicious), but I hadn't used the poffertjes mix yet. Poffertjes are little round amazing pancakes; that you serve with butter and powdered sugar.

The reason I hadn't indulged sooner was we were on a diet; a low carb diet. But since the PCOUJ (postal counter of unjoy) and working at the pharmacy, i'm quite aware of expiry dates; I declared last saturday as a poffertjes day!

I was told that the pan could only work on a gas stove.... well I beg to differ! I pre-heated the pan and then sqeezed some of that pancake goodness!

It was sooooo good! Thanks Kim :)

On a different note....


 OOOOH! The carnival came to town! Even just seeing it makes me feel good and young and wild! I didn't get to go because i was sick and the weather was crappy !

Everyday I get to walk by a pizza place and I swear it is the smallest pizza place EVER! That I know of course! There's probably this place in Asia that cranks out 1000 pizza pies in less than 12 minutes from a restaurant that is less than 10 square feet but I digress.....I pass this place twice a day and I think it's at most 50 square feet and the guy makes delicious pizza. Of course you can't sit! It's a take out place only...

The rickety steps are just too much!

I caught this couple unaware talking about the toppings.....

It doesn't go farther than the end of the pic on the right.

The crust is kinda sweet and has sesame seeds on it. The toppings are varied; all dressed,sausage (merguez),veggie, pepperoni and cheese. YUM cheesy goodness!
It's the perfect snack to bring on the train!

Have a great week and happy thrifting!
 

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Here it is!

Comfort food is so very important in our lives especially when life goes awry or the weather is freezing. We all need food that makes us feel warm and secure. And I don't mean food to numb us....

So here is the long awaited recipe...

Mexican Lasagna


1 1/2 pounds ground chicken (we used lean ground beef)

1 cup each diced red onions and diced green bell pepper

2 teaspoons minced garlic

1 cup canned black beans, drained and rinsed (I use a 19oz can)

1 cup diced tomatoes ( I use a 26 oz can)

1/2 cup fresh or frozen corn (I use 1 cup)

1 1/2 teaspoon chili powder

1 teaspoon ground cumin

2 cups pasta sauce ( I use 1 can of condensed tomato soup)

1 cup medium salsa ( optional)

1/4 teaspoon ground pepper

2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro

4 large or 8 small whole wheat flour tortillas

1 1/2 cups shredded light sharp cheddar cheese

1/4 cup green onions

sour cream, optional

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a 13 x 9-inch casserole dish with cooking spray and set aside. In a large nonstick skillet, cook the ground chicken, onions, green pepper and garlic over medium-high heat until the chicken is no longer pink. Break up any large pieces of chicken as it is cooking.

Add black beans, tomatoes, corn, chili powder and cumin. Cook and stir for 2 more minutes. Add pasta sauce, salsa and black pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in cilantro and remove from heat.

To assemble casserole, spread a third of the sauce mixture over bottom of casserole dish. Top with half of the tortillas, overlapping and cutting them as necessary to fit. Top with a third of the sauce mixture, followed by half of the cheese. Cover cheese with remaining tortillas, followed by remaining sauce. Sprinkle remaining cheese over sauce and top with green onions. Cover with foil and bake for 35 minutes.

Uncover and bake 10 more minutes. Let lasagna stand for at least 10 minutes before slicing for easier serving. Top each piece with a dollop of sour cream.

This is a delicious recipe. Sometimes I do substitutions, sometimes not. I do a freezer inventory before and this time I used frozen green pepper and leftover frozen cheese. I usually use the leftover sauce to make a small lasagna that I freeze for later use. You can do this on the weekend and freeze it for another day.
 
I make mine in Pyrex! Are you surprised? You can substitute ingredients to make it more figure friendly....
 
And of course it tastes even better the next day!  
                                                                       I serve it with a nice green salad and a smile!
 
Tomorrow I visit a church basement and I'm having super with the girls! PARTY!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Mexican Lasagna...CHECK!

Ok well I was a bit too optimistic! LOL those things happen!

Last night I ....caught up with the wash, soaked the black beans (and cooked them), pre-cooked the ground beef and defrosted the green pepper. I also blogged, finished packing one of those giant plastic bins and fetched some seedling soil and pots for the tomato plants.I downloaded music and fixed one of my favorite brooch.

Then I kinda collapsed and  just vanished for the night.

This morning I washed those wool covers and dried them on the clothes line, finished cooking the mexican lasagna (also known as enchilada casserole). Took plenty of pics, ans listed some stuff. We ate lunch and them it hit me: The sore throat was back and I was sooo tired! What kind of crappy cold is that? PLEASE LEAVE ME ALONE! I HAVE BEEN SICK FOR 2 WEEKS NOW! GO AWAY YOU STUPID COLD!

Ok enough! Now for some pics!

Mexican lasagna just put in the oven.


Now for some of those thrifty finds from the last weeks....

A super sunshiny recipe box.

                                           A Glasbake Lipton mug. Funny these were given as a bonus when you bought Lipton soup. Those are barely big enough for a cuppa joe! But it's pink and I've always had a soft spot for these...this one has a lot of wear, which I couldn't see because of the crud, but it was .59cents so that is okay.

                                My first lab Pyrex! How cool is that? It was .99cents. I wanted to pick some daffodils to put in it, but that is about when I got real tired....so maybe tomorrow.



I got this bag at the Cornwall Sally Ann. It was love at first sight! I'm still over the fence if I'm going to use it or sell it...But I love it, it's sooooo cute!



This was a gift. A Mother's Day gift. Dan came home last night all proud and couldn't keep it 'til tomorrow. It's a delicious Fireking bowl with Dominoes!
I was really touched by this little bowl and the tought behind it. Let's face it I am not a mother (except to the kitties).OMG don't tell me this is my next collection?

                                                        Thank you Dan I love the bowl :)

Tomorrow I hope to be full of energy and be able to work a bit outside. I hope the weather will cooperate as well!  

Friday, May 6, 2011

Oh the possibilities!

This what I love about Fridays…They are the gateway to the weekend and a whole wide world of possibilities!

One thing for sure is that I won’t be thrifting but it’s A-OKAY with me. I need to deal with the thrifted treasures: clean, take pics, share with you and put in the store if applicable.

I also need to prepare a bit of food for next week to take care of the lunches...I crave Mexican lasagne! Suppers are easier, we try not to eat carbs at night....so it’s meat, or some kind of protein and veggies.

The painting hasn’t started for various reasons, well mostly sickness, so we need to give a big push to put all our stuff away and start the primer. A new floor is being installed on May 25th so the place needs to be cleared and painted!

I have some wash to catch up on, awkward things to wash that need to be dried outside (wool covers). I can’t dry on the clothes line @ night and it has been raining 4EVER!

I have to transplant my veggie seedlings in bigger pots....this is URGENT!

I want to work outside too, there are leaves to rake, borders to tidy, walks to be swept.....and that is just for tomorrow! Oh I forgot! I need to squeeze a bit of dance practice because we learned 5 dances last week. Yes 5! Our brains and legs turned to mush.....

Sunday is more routine like. I might have some time to garden, then off to the dance course, a spot of shopping, then back home for preparations for the week ahead .

Have a great night!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

I Fell in LOVE!

While on our road trip to Ontario, I saw a Bulk Barn store and wanted to go there but Dan didn't see the point! I said : It's full of bulk stuff like the almonds yo like sooo much (that did it! Next thing I knew the flasher was on and we were looking for a parking spot).

Last time I was in a Bulk Barn was in....let me see 1989? Yes that sounds about right and in Moncton NB of all places! I was on vacation and buying colored popcorn (doesn't pop colored, bummer).

We were like kids in Disneyland! We bought Goji  berrries, mulberries, pisctacchioes, oolong tea with orange peel, flaked dried onions, israely couscous and Sugar Twin. Everything is fresh and delicious!


I was already plotting my next trip when I realized that we have one nearby in Vaudreuil! Hellooooo! It just opened and I hope it catches on!

We Quebecers don't particularly like anglo brands (must be a language thing). Ponderosa, Pizza Pizza, Montana's, Red Lobster are just a few franchises that tried to make it and couldn't cut it....They thrive in the rest of Canada.....How strange!
Once in a while we head to Ottawa and go pig out @ Red Lobster (there's a cool Value Village in the same strip mall and a Sally Ann across the street).

Here's some of my finds from that lovely roadtrip.

A nearly new (in great condition) Brita water filtration pitcher with a brand new filter (sealed in bag) and a bagel cutter (Brand new). That set us back 5$ for both; basically the price of a new water filter.
We've been using Brita products for 15 years now and our current pitcher is not user friendly. The handle is hollow and it is pretty easy to fill it with water by accident and drip all over. This is a familiar sight @ Vonlipi's. 
 I found a milk glass mug and a cool plaid bag. I got the bedbugs speech Dan really scared of those suckers! but I feel the bag was not comfortable for those critters.
I haven't been able to take pics, the weather is real crappy (rain all the time!)
And I have another throat infection/flu/sinusitis/pain in the butt sickness that is dragging me down; but I won't give up!
Have a great night! :) 
 

Sunday, May 1, 2011

What was she thinking?

Today I wanted to blog about tomorrow's national election...But I needed to share something else, something witnessed by millions.....and oh so terrifying!


THE HAT! retching sounds.

What went through her head? Did she think I want the whole world to see me with a beige body part on my head? Did she want to piss her daddy off (I think that one worked because I saw his face friday morning)

Here's a closer look:


                                      
                                 The hat is now so famous it has its own Facebook page!

                                                            EEEEWWWWWWW!

In case you're wondering I did find some cool things on the roadtrip, but that's for another post!

                                 Be well and go play outside!