Monday, December 29, 2014

Crafty TCB

Well, Xmas is over and just a warm fuzzy memory and the New Year is just a stone throw away.

I cooked and baked so much that the skin on my entire body felt covered in flour...

Everybody appreciated and got their seasonnal goodies...

                                     Henry found a new friend Stella of Elf on a Shelf  fame.
                                       I sure hope he behaves!

I made a fresh and lovely lunch of grilled shrimp and quinoa salad
                                                   And Dan made this lovely super cute birch tree for Dad.
                                                The Etsy shop might take a new direction!
                                                 I'm thinking all kinds of birch accessories!

                                                  So for now , good night and sleep tight!

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Turkey? Check!

So it is Xmas eve and everything is ready...

We are waiting for my stepdaughter who took a nap....

I have a fast recipe to share with you in case you need something not too sweet or a last minute gift....

Cranberry Fudge !!!

you will need:

8 oz semi-sweet chocolate
1 cup chopped dried cranberries
2/3 cup of sweetened condensed milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Mix the chocolate and the sweet condensed in a bowl placed on top of a pot filled with hot water, not boiling and melt, stir occasionely. When all combined, add the vanilla then the cranberries.
Pour in a bread mold lined with cellophane wrap. Smooth top and cover. Refrigerate at least 3 hours and cut in pieces.


This is super easy and DELICIOUS!
On this sweet note I wish you all a very Merry Xmas!
i hope you will have lovely and safe celebrations
Be well , stay safe and keep on thrifting!!! 

Tuesday, December 23, 2014


2014 was the suckyest thrifting year for little old me. There were no BIG finds and in a way that is fine since I decided to put the store on hiatus.
But I love a day where all the thrifting stars align and you find good stuff! You just need to appear and pouf! Thrifting magic!
So that’s just what happened on Saturday….We took a small roadtrip to drop a box of donation at the Value Village in Cornwall and cross the bridge for some U.S. groceries….
But our first stop was Michael’s for a Xmas Peanuts flag…I lost mine to a windstorm 2 christmasses ago….I have no idea why they don’t carry seasonal flags , they have Friends and Welcome but no Christmassy joy (SUPER DOUBLE BUMMER)
So back in the car and on to Value Village…I drop my box and went in not expecting much…There was a lot of gooood stuff
But especially a vintage Xmas tree stand new in a box from Zellers. We had the same one , until it rusted out and died and we bought a big ass Xmas tree stand that is super ugly nut the tree never tips over…My step daughter wanted one for a small tree and the price was right at $2.00 ($3.99 minus 50% off).
I also grabbed one of those mixed bags for $1.99 and I was thrilled to find this mini pitcher (creamer) that had been on my thrift bucket list for many years, ever since I bought its big bro in a church basement in Moncton NB…That takes us back to 1988 !
There were 2 other knickknacks that will re-enter the wheel of thrifting pretty soon….

We also stopped at the Salvation Army and I wa lucky enough to find this
Vintage exterior light set , new in the box for $2.00
I will use it to replace one of my sets that is cracking under the weather strain.
Last but certainl not least...
This is a blowmold vignette that Dan set up for me.
It fills me up with JOY!!!

                                  I'm off to watch TV because I need to get off my feet. I just came out of
                                 a Xmas cooking marathon! I made cranberry orange bread, cranberry fudge, mini cheese balls and Pfeffernusse dough (I will bake the cookies tomorrow as they taste better the same day).

Tomorrow I will cook the turkey, stuffing and Monte Carlo potatoes....Good times!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

So Easy

Today I will share one of my favorite holiday treats....I found this recipe in a McCall's magazine Xmas number in 1992 (but not 100% sure).

I remember the kitchen on 2nd ave in Verdun with its black and white floor and mediterraneen  feature wall...You know...mustardy yellow with sponge paint effects...You've seen some for sure.

So if I remember correctly I was on the lookout for a low call, fat free treat...And those hit the spot!

Peppermint Meringue Kisses

4 egg white room temp
3/4 to 1 cup of white granulated sugar
pinch of cream of tartar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
crushed peppermint candies or candy canes

Pre-heat the oven at 175F

 I freeze the egg yolks 2 by 2 to add to recipes later
Don't forget to label the containers
Whip the egg whites until soft peaks form.
add the cream of tartar and when combined add
the vanilla. Then you add the sugar 1/4 cup at a time
and beat until completely dissolved.
Then on baking sheets lined with parchement paper,
with 2 teaspoons drop teaspoonfuls and be sure
to leave little peaks.
 Garnish with pinches of crushed candy.
I found these pepermints bits at Walmart in Plattsburg NY on a roadtrip
in November. They were approximately the same price as candy canes, and I didn't need to crush them. 
Cook 2 hours with the oven door slightly ajar.
Turn the oven off and leave to cool completely overnight.
Sweet and crunchy and pepperminty!
Oh and guess who the cat dragged in?

Henry!!! Back from a world tour....
He will be spending Xmas with me at my house of Pyrex!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

So Cheery

I am definitely a sucker for nice holiday decor
In downtown Montreal you can see some pretty elegant decorations.

                                                    I think the trick is matching greenery and lights for
                                                   some great results!

                                               We wanted to do planter with aspen and lights but
                                                we got caught in the snow storm.

                               There is still 13 days until Xmas....

                                            So time will tell!

Monday, December 8, 2014

Great Sunday

I love weekends where everything seems to glide and flow effortlessy....

Don't get me wrong, I'm not talking about a lazy couch potatoey weekend but one where you suddenly get up from the couch and start taking care of business, slow and steady!

The meat pies are all wrapped up and frozen ready for future feasting. The burned out bulbs are replaced.

The basement door is insulated, the garden hose rolled up in the caddy (We bring the frozen hose down in the basement, let it defrost and rolled it up again so It is snug as a bug for winter).

Dan has been a busy bee cleaning out the basement and throwing away broken things. And I decided to start decorating inside!

 A nice and joyous winter scene....

                                      This is our new Xmas frame...It lights up!

                                   As you can see Bandito is totally ignoring my decorating efforts!
                                   He is content to bask in the keyboard's soft heat....

I am now working on a blowmold scene.....Stay tuned!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Caramel Corn

Ok here it is my caramel corn recipe.
It is gooooood! And super addictive.
It came from a blog with the word tree in it...It was a great recipe blog and then one day poof you had to be invited to be able to read it.
I am really glad I copied the recipe before!
Caramel Corn
2 cups brown sugar (packed)
1 cup butter
½ cup dark corn syrup
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon baking soda
5 quarts popped corn
Pop corn and keep warm in 2 shallow pans (however, I recommend using one large roasting pan versus cookie sheets) in 250 degree oven. Combine sugar, corn syrup, butter and salt in a sauce pan on stovetop. Bring to a boil slowly and boil for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in baking soda. Pour immediately over popped corn and mix well. Place back in oven and bake for 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes. Let cool and break up. Store in container . Freezes well.
Now you could do the whisky version as well...When you remove from the heat, do not add the baking soda but add 12 tablespoons of whisky and 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract. Mix well and put on the stove again and cook until it gets thicker.
So enjoy and see you soon!  

Monday, December 1, 2014

More Xmas goodies

Since my last post I made 2 batches of gingerbread dough. In one I replaced the wheat  flour for spelt flour for my Dad who can't eat wheat anymore (for the time being) it gives him asthma...and a regular batch as well.

Now I scoured the web for my recipe but couldn't find it and I am too lazy to type it up....The difference is the addition of 2 tablespoons of orange zest.


I participated in the Black Friday satanic shopping Target to get a B-Day gift for Dan. It was pretty organized...

 Outside...We got coffee and a nifty store plan....
                                          Inside , well that was total chaos! A lady was yelling at me in Greek and trying to sit me down in her cart! Another one kept saying : It is just like Scandal! Do you watch Scandal, I am hooked on Scandal...
                                         By a shopping miracle I got the last item I cam to get....
                                          I also saw these drinking accessories...

                                          And Pyrex! Xmas Pyrex!

                                          But I did not get one, or 2 or 3. I bought NONE!
                                          After I took the subway and went to the office!


                                           I spent the weekend making caramel corn...It keeps very well and is totally delicious!

Now this is where I would share the recipe but it didn't copy well, so I will have to work on it. Sorry
And now I have this big black line I can't get rid of.
And this morning I decorate my desk and got a lot of comments on my Xmas wallpaper.
So sleep tight and dream beautiful dreams! I'm off to bed cause I am pooped!

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Xmas Sandies....YUM

The recipe I'm about to share was my maternal Grandma's.

It was the only place I would eat those and I had the great idea to ask for the recipe before she passed away.

They were called Christmas Shortbread, but shortbread don't become golden.....hence the name change.

Xmas Sandies

3 1/2 cups flour
3 teaspoons beaking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
16 tablespoons of softenned butter and shortening
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
2 eggs
3/4 cup mixed red and green candied cherries
1/2 cup chopped almonds
2 teaspoons vanilla

Measure the flour with the baking powder and salt. Cream butter and shortening, gradually add sugar.
Mix well, add eggs, then flour mixture gradually. when all added add vanilla and cherries and almonds.

the dough should be soft but not sticky. Separate the dough and place on waxed paper and roll.

Refrigerate or freeze.
 The full recipe makes about 8 or 9 dozens small cookies. Since Dan and Dad find them kinda boring... I cut the recipe in half.

They keep about 3 weeks in the fridge or a couple of months in the freezer.When you are ready to bake them, pre-heat the oven to 425 F. Cut in slices and bake about 6 minutes.

When totally cool place in a metal cookie box lined with waxed paper...They are even better after they have sat it the box for a couple of days...

A great little cookie with a cup of tea, a blast from the past....

Friday, November 7, 2014

Getting ready

Ever since Halloween is behind us, I have Xmas on my mind....

I don't know how I would plan it if I was living in the U.S. because Thanksgiving is still to come...

So I have made a food/goodies schedule to keep everything under control!

It is flexible (of course) and in the end if something doesn't get done, well...It happens!

So tonight in a rare burst of energy, I made my cranberry sauce. Check!

I tweek the recipe on the bag.

Here it is:

2 cups (450 ml) cranberries (fresh or frozen), 1/2 cup (125ml) water, 1/2 cup (125ml) maple syrup, zest of one orange and the juice of 1/2 an orange.

I put everything in the medium sized sauce pan and brought to a gentle boil . Continue to cook until the berries start to pop, reduce until thickened a bit. It was then that I added some Jack Daniel's , about an ounce or 2.....I hope it will give an interesting taste!

 Cool, then put in a jar or a Tupperware, label and freeze. Or keep in fridge for about a week .

One down! I hope to keep posting my Holidays recipes to inspire you in your celebrations.

Have a great evening!

Monday, November 3, 2014

Big Decisions

It is not like I didn't see this coming....

I opened my Etsy shop in 2008, I was trying to get rid of stuff, which I did, but in the process....I gathered a good 14 boxes of inventory!

So I have decided that after this coming Holiday season I will put the shop on hiatus.

I have no idea if I will reopen it eventually.

So if you see something that strikes your fancy, feel free to convo or email, and I am more than opened to make a deal....

However shipping charges are non-negotiable because Canada Post is already gouging me.

Here is my Etsy shop link Vonlipi's Favorites

So in the meantime I leave you with these gorgeous flower arrengements , seen on Sherbrooke street West.

                                 This is just the kind of decor I would do if I had the stone planters

And this is my Halloween picture with my Green Lantern friend.
There was no Halloween stuff on my floor and I can't help but think that my Dad (AKA Eagle Eye) will make a comment (or think about one) about the muffin top...oh well...I felt so put together on that day until I saw that picture!
I do have a nice smile!
Sleep tight :)

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Must Get!

I find that the problem with Target Canada, besides not including a flyer in our weekly flyer bag, having bare shelves and blah stores, is that it is not in the U.S.

In the past whenever I would go to Target in Maine I would get all excited because I couldn't find the stuff in Canada! Now they made deals with canadian companies, so let's face it I can find most of the things ANYWHERE....even in Walmart!

And what I want is not in the shelves.....But today I managed to nab the last white full fitted sheet!

Yay! And I saw these lovely appliances that I simply MUST HAVE!

                                         These just blew me away! I just wanted to say BYE BYE old white toaster and bland crockpot! MUST HAVE THESE....They just filled me with glee!

I also saw those adorable Xmas outdoor decor....Who can resist this sweet fox?

                                                    This adorable piggy?

                                          Or this huggable Dashung?

                                         I would have grabbed them in a jiffy if they had been blowmolds....
                                         So that will be for another time!
                                                    I might just go back and grab one of the adorable white foxes.....

                                            So I will bid you good night!

Friday, October 24, 2014

What, what what ???? and EEEEEWWWW!!!

Sometimes I struggle to find a title to my posts.....I think this fits the bill.

It is nearly November which means the Holidays are just around the corner. In my boondock there is a big food drive (La Guignolée) early December. Last year I was not prepared for it, and I felt bad.

So this year I wanted to get a jump on it and start this weekend. First step: I go through my pantry and check what I have; sometimes I go crazy and buy too much tomatoes, so I'll give some of those.

I love doing this so I can clean the pantry at the same time! I check every can for the expiration date and the expired ones (depending of the date) will either go back in the pantry or in the garbage.

I try extra hard not to give expired items, I feel it is very insulting!

Boy was I in for a surprise!

I was so sure I cleaned out the pantry just 6 months ago! I found soup cans expired 4 years...WHAT? WHAT? WHAT???

I also found some cans all sticky....It smelled of maple syrup....So I cleaned and cleaned and never found the source of the leaking maple syrup.

Like I told Dan : It is a pretty interesting way to spend a Friday night! And as an added bonus I smashed a bottle of sweet and spicy asian chicken sauce on the pantry floor. There was glass and sticky mess allllll over. It took forever to clean up!

                                Now all the almond milk is at the same place,
and easier to juge how many to buy because we use about 4 liters a week and over all things are more organized and easier to see.

                                I have Stockpile Envy ( Extreme Couponing) I wish I had a year of toilet paper and feminine products...but it is not to be in Quebec...the supermarkets do not double the coupons and buy one get one free coupons are very rare....Oh well, I do have soup cans, tomatoes and olives to last me a while...

And Dan says I should not buy Kraft Mac n Cheese for quite a while....LOL unless it is a new amazing flavor.....

In the right corber you can see my 2 quarts of Fire Cider (which I named fire water....) I got the recipe from homespun seasonal  it will help ward off colds and soothe sore muscles!

I can't wait to try it, I bet it is kind of funky tasting!

Have a nice weekend!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Another 'Seen Around` post

To tell you the truth I wanted to blog but had no idea what to write about.
So I lookd in my picture folder for some inspiration....
                                I spotted these seasonnal beauties at my local grocery store...Pumpkins
                                make me happy, they are so bright and cheery!
                                          I remember when this chip n dip was all the rage in the 90's.
                                          I also remembered how I resisted buying it . I had a co-worker who bought it along with other pieces, like a soap dispenser...I wonder if she still has them or they ended up in
a yardsale.
                                          AAAaaahhh no visit to the Value Village is complete without a Pyrex
                                          sighting !

                                          A cute Shenandoah casserole circa 1980's

I couln not resist taking a picture of this English Pyrex with a stunning ressemblance to Old Town Blue!

                                I always was a secret Bedazzle lover so this made me smile!

                                         And last but not least this plastic bead lampshade.
                                         it both enchants and repulses me....It must attract dust like the dickens...

                                         We are still getting the house ready for winter , caulking , prepping and purging (of course)....I am still working on the shed and some patio furniture needs to be brought inside. I am hoping for some drier weather to get ahead.....