Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Thrifty finds

About a gazillion years ago (Ok more like 10), we decided cross country skiing was for us!!!

So we bought some skis and poles on sale, but no boots (why oh why???). Well needless to say the skis have been 'rotting' in the basement gathering sawdust and spider webs and probably mice poo (that's for another post...LOL.).

Since after Xmas we have been wanting to do some....finding 3 peg boots has been kinda problematic.

1) they don't make 3 pegs boots anymore
2) the second hand sport shop didn't have our size
3) No store has 'leftover' 3 pegs boots
4) The Salvation army had skis but no boots

Well today is wednesday and wednesday is church basement day- and it is 5.00$ a garbage bag of clothes or 50% off.

So I put on my longjohns (yes it's that kind of weather in western Quebec) and my trusty ski goggles and took a walk to the church.
I found this refrigerator dish with lid (.50c cents) and this excellent leather wallet (free). I saw some cross country skis near the door and asked the nice lady at the counter if they had any Xcountry boots and she said "if we have some they're in the back in the boxes",well they did have some and I found 2 pairs that will fit us! SCORE!!! I was sooo proud of myself!
We will be able to ski!!! I need to desinfect the boots but after that we will be good to go!
The refrigerator dish is not a Pyrex or a Fire King but an Arcoroc and was primarly used as a butter dish. My dad who's anti-plastic in the microwave or even for leftovers will love it!!!
I did have a lot of fun this morning but I gotta go! :)

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Free! And other winter pleasures....

I should have blogged about this in early I'm such a naughty girl......

On one of my wednesday walks in late November(to the chruch basement) I spotted this little evergreen by the side of the road.

The owners of the house were working on their house and had ripped most of the lanscaping.

I couldn't believe my luck! FREE tree! Free tree!!!

Of course I dragged it back to my house! Too bad it was too short to bring in the house and use it as my main Xmas tree. But I always wanted to have a lighted evergreen outside...And this is just what I did with some nice LED lights! It was delicious....

Second picture is of my new (second hand) Santa. This year I declared that I needed (not wanted...NEEDED! lol) a plastic Santa to put outside.

I found an interior one at the Salvation Army (.49 cents) and we went for supper at my brother in law Pierre and he gave me his old Santa that he didn't use anymore!

Wow I sure was in Santa heaven!!!

Last but not least a picture of my snowman. I've had it for 10-12 years, found it at the hardware store and it was love at first sight...sigh! LOL

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


I went to the big city (Montreal) for my chiropractor's appointment. I was not looking for sales or deals...
But I stumbled into a Carlton Cards (The canadian Hallmark). I got an heirloom ornement of the 1965 Corvette and 2 Yankee Candle scented wax tarts for 2.26 tax included. A wax tart is 2.25 regular X 2= 4.50 plus the ornement was originally 19.00. So 19.00 plus 4.50=23.50 and I didn't add the tax yet. So I fugured the day was off to a good start!!!
The treatment tires me so much more now that I don't work....And I had planned a whole day of shopping (the after Xmas sales-the leftovers,Old navy, The Gap-I wanted to score a xmas candle,Chinatown-some lunch, some groceries, the Salvation Army....) You get the picture!!! Well at 10:00 am I was at the Salvation Army (slim pickings....I did see a red Pyres 402 bowl in need of a good home :()
At 11:30 I was bushed and sitting in one of my fav restaurant for burgers and fries: Mr Steer in operation since 1958 it features a round(like a ball patty) and suzie Q fries (curly fries) but not frozen FRESH fries- In my opinion to die for!!! I have been going there 35 years (OMG!!! None of us is getting any younger!!!). My Dad would bring me there during our Xmas shopping extravaganza.....He still does,when he's in town.
This is definitely a retro tacky kinda place and every meal comes with this little iceberg/carrot/cabbage salad in a wooden bowl and you either add
french dressing or oil and vinegar-that's it no other dressing. I always take number 2 medium suzie and a root beer or diet pepsi. It always brings back memories and makes me feel good! After I jumped in the 12:30 train (I didn't do any shopping).....I will have to go back on a non-chiro day!!!

Monday, January 19, 2009


First of all I'd like to tell you that I saw some Obama earrings on Etsy. Come on people! What's up with that?
I know all the world's hopes are on President's Obama shoulders and I wouldn't want to be in his shoes right now...

I hope he doesn't disappoint you and I can't wait to see how it goes with our Prime Minister (Who's a spawn of Bush!) No, no I didn't vote for Mr. Harper (I don't vote for people who want to deny us our rights).

Ok now with our main program! In the 80's I was really into health food and I volunteered in a food Coop and living simpler. The 90's got the beat of me (lol) and I gave up most of that clean living but I never gave up sprouting... My first sprouter was a mason jar with a piece of screen or cheese cloth and an elastic band, but I wasn't crazy about that. The sprouts were always sitting in water and eurk...

Then I decide to go all out and buy a sprouter...The Biosta Sprouter! I remember paying in the neighborhood of 20 bucks and I started sprouting for real! And did I sprout!!! Alfalfa, lentils, mung beans, sunflower, name it I probably sprouted it!!! But after more than 20 years my sprouter was really tired and cracked aqnd the plastic was cloudy......I was thinking of replacing it but it is now 30 bucks and I thought it was a lot of money (and yet I bought an LCD tv.....funny where how our priorities are!)
I found this one at Value Village for 1.99 Mint no box but still with the little red thing-a-magiggs, you could tell that the pricing people didn't know what they were pricing!!! LOL

So this time around, with camera in hand I decide to chronicle the sprouting process....It usually takes between 3 to 5 days to get beautiful tender sprouts! Not the stinky yellow crap they sell in supermarkets....
I started last saturday so I should get results wednesday. On the top tray I have the spicy lentil crunch which contains green lentils,radish,alfalfa,mustard and red clover. On the second tray you have the ancient eastern blend which ids made of fenugreek,lentils,kamut and adzuki beans. The second mix is must faster to grow and you have to check it often other wise you get big ol'grass!!! Sticks in your teeth and everything!!!
I'll post an update on the sprouts soon....Later alligators! :)

Friday, January 16, 2009

Color and Chicken pot pie.....

I went to look at my Pyrex set in flickr and I realised that what I miss in the winter was the color.

My eyes need constant color stimulation (That sounds kinda After seeing that there are a lot of Supermarket groups in Flickr...I joined one!

And took out my camera during my latest supermarket visit! Maxi & cie (the superstore for the rest of Canada) is having a big 'recession' sale featuring the No Name brand. Most of their labels are yellow, which is a great treat for my color deprived eyes so I let

You have the wall of shame; now it is the wall of No Name! Second picture is pretty self explanatory.....tomatoes and cukes!

Last picture assorted veggies....Yum

Will the recession really change the way people shop,cook and eat?

Will people be leaving convenience food behind and start making food from scratch? We will have to see.

My mom was a real skinflint. She would wash saran wrap and aluminum foil. She would remove the mold from food and serve it up for supper and god only knows what else she did to save money! But we splurged on vacation. So I grew up being thrifty and repairing my socks instead of throwing them away, and making stock from chicken bones and buying an LCD TV. So I alternate between the thrifty and the spendy!!!
January is always a thrifty month because a lot of bills are due at the beginning of the year: the license plate renewal, the home and car insurance (but no Xmas credit card bills, because everything was paid on the spot!!!) At least I learn from my mistakes...

We're in a cold snap so all I can think about is comfort food. Yesterday I was surfing the web looking for a chicken pot pie recipe using biscuit mix for the topping and I found one in the Kraft canada site. here's the link if you want :
You can tell that Kraft want YOU to BUY their have cheese in every recipe (cheese is good but you need to leave the cheese alone sometimes!)
I didn't use the cheese, used a low fat cream of celery soup, fat free sour cream, skim milk and last but not least added fresh chopped parsley to the biscuit mix. Oh I also used frozen peas, fresh carrots and fresh green beans insteas of the frozen veggies (I know they are a gig time saer but I'm not crazy about the
It was delicious easy and very satisfying for those cold nights....Brrrrrr

Friday, January 9, 2009

Taking the tree down

So I was supposed to start yesterday but didn't do much....
At 6 this morning I was pulling out Pyrex from the armoire amd filling them with ornements.
I give myself a big pat of the shoulder for thinking about 'separating' the ornements so it's easier to put in the boxes....Of course Yoda was there to check everything and do the inventory...LOL
Third picture you can see the gorgeous cupcake ornements my dad gave me before he left for Spain...He's coming back tomorrow...I can't wait to see him...Probably next week for some Dim Sum in Chinatown.
Besides losing most of my social network, the thing I miss the most now is Chinatown. Sigh,
I would go every week, get weird veggies and ingredients and desserts and gross out my co-workers ( who were not very adventurous...) One exception my dearest collegue and friend Ann, who would treck to Chinatown with me and eat basically everything....Too funny!
She never thought the joint was too dirty to eat in (amazing) and followed me wherever I went. I miss her dearly...We talk nearly everyweek but we live very far away....Oh well!
So I can report that most of the decorations are in their boxes...supper is nearly ready...Oops I need to make coffee...hehehehe
I'll write soon, I promise!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Xmas tree Oh Xmas tree what will become of thee???

So once again it is time to put Xmas in storage until next December...sigh!
It makes me feel sad....yet....When I do yoga in the mornings I stretch INTO the tree!!! So what will happen to my tree?
My municipality has adopted new rules regarding garbage pick up: We have the recycling on Thrusdays-I tell you that bin is so HUGE- 2 people could stand in it!!!
Since they started collecting the recyclables we have gone from 3 garbage bags a week to 1!
I compost also (even in winter) I empty my little stainless steel pail (from Lee Valley) directly in the veggie plots and when the earth thaws I mix everything (seems to be working so far).
They also distributed a similar grey bin on wheels for the regular garbage-but we cannot put what we like in our bins-no grass clippins, dead leaves,earth,ciment,asphalt,flammable or explosive materials or anything that doesn't completely fit in the bin.....
So basically NO TREASURES!!! No furniture,mirrors and other interesting what nots that I would gather on Sunday night....I am sad!
The town's maintenance division is supposed to pick up bulky waste the third Friday of every month. Let me tell you that i'll be waiting to see what gorgeous stuff I can find next Thursday night !!!
About those dead leaves: they do pick them up but only in paper bags (that don't close) and only 3 saturdays in November- Where was I when they voted that one????
I live near the water and the wind is MEGA blowing all the time. Even when all my leaves are picked up, it winds and I get leaves from I don't know where, so I always have 5 or 10 more bags (that won't make it in time for the pick up....) Anywho....I had to call the town hall because I had no idea what to do with my tree and the new rules.
Well it turns out that they will pick up trees next week and turned them into mulch- Free mulch I could pick up at the maintenance division yard ( That I like!!!)
WOW that feels good! a good old fashion rant!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Blogs I love

Just sharing a picture of Boubou in between naps (too much catnip!).

The first blog I discovered in 2007 was Solid Cherry a catalog of thrifted items (All the links are in my blog list) and I fell in love with the idea of taking pictures of found treasures and posting them in the Internet. How cool is that? I think I read that blog in it's entirety 2 or 3 times....I did hate my job at that time lol !

Then I found Thriftaholic a tale of two addicts (I love the title! Wish I had thought of it first...) I definitely would like to go thrifting with those girls. The only problem is that they haven't posted anything in ages.

If you're looking for an amazing recipe blog I suggest The Flowering Dogwood. If you like sugar, please do yourself a favor and try the caramel popcorn recipe! It is easy and soooooo good, you will want to do it again and again....

Springmont Cottage just fills me with joy. It is filled with everyday things that make me feel warm and fuzzy (thrifting included!)

Living The Local Life is all about life in New Hampshire with 2 kids and buying and living local. Great tips on going local and great recipes!When I found that blog I was looking for some low calorie options...and I thought Living Local meant Living Low Calorie lol how crazy is that????

If you want to see amazing necklaces (and more) visit The Misadventures of Mub and if you want to see a tireless crafter check out Lolie Craft.

2 of the blogs I follow give me food for thought (litterally) On Bradstreet and These Days in French Life. Go visit don't wait they will probably change your outlook on life.

I love all the blogs in my list otherwise I would delete them! But time is short and even if i didn't write about your blog doesn't mean it's not appreciated :)

I hope I have given you some suggestions for some blog tourism. Let's expand our horizons....

Monday, January 5, 2009

Garden porn....

I had sooo much trouble downloading this picture you wouldn't believe!!! LOL
Just after the Holidays the seed catalogs start filling my mail box, some even came at the beginning of December. Now that the festivities are over.....It is time to read, and devour and post-it and bend pages and put X on the desired vegetable....

We don't have a lot of seed 'pushers' in Quebec and the big commercial one I can never understand their catalog (too mixed up!). I do support a couple of kitchen table operations like Semences Solana (they have really exotic veggies) But my 2 faves are West Coast Seeds and Vesey's.
Every year I try new vegetables, some are hits others misses. 2007 hits were Kale and Butternut Squash! Misses? Celeriac and Fennel and Asparagus peas (I had 2). For this year I will be trying Edamame, Lemon cucumbers, Collards and Long Keeper Tomatoes (are supposed to stay fresh for 12 weeks after picking.....Can't wait to see that) and Fennel from seed (last year I bought a plant and I didn't know anything about it...). Most of the seeds I buy is Heirloom or Organic. Organic is still hard to find around here....
I placed my order today because last year by the time I ordered Edamame was sold out!!! I will still be sewing kale and Butternut Squash and bush beans, Arugula,basil,groud cherries, peas,cherry tomatoes,beefsteak tomatoes,watermelon and cantalope. It's a miracle I have room for flowers!!!

Saturday, January 3, 2009

New Year lunch

If you're ever in Hudson, Qc and feel a tad hungry be sure to stop to the Willow Place Inn on the shore of Lake-of-two-Mountains.
Situated in a beautiful old house built in 1820, you can either enjoy luch or supper in the pub or the dinning room and if the weather is nice they have a wonderful lawn where you can eat or have a drink in a nice Adirondack chair.
The food is pub grub with flair ( Is this a restaurant review?lol) You can order kidney pie, fish and chips or tandoori salmon. Their specialty is The Willow Dip a delicious rib roast sandwich with an au jus bowl and fresh cut french fries...TO DIE FOR....
I had one just yesterday .....YUM!
Their desserts look absolutely delightful but I never ordered one (I never have room....)

In winter you can cross lake-of-two-mountains on the ice bridge and in the summer the ferry is there to take you to Oka.
From the pub you can see people ice fishing,ATV-ing and snow gliding.

After lunc you can take a drive to see the beautiful Hudson houses and take a walk in the village for a spot of shopping.

I love Hudson village, it reminds me of quaint New England villages. I wish I could live there one day....

Friday, January 2, 2009

Happy New Year!!!

I wish everybody a truly wonderful New Year full of possibilities (aren't possibilities the best?), tons of thrifting finds and JOY (laughter is a must) and let's not forget Health (where would we be without it).

I love the idea that we have a new year to explore!

2008 was certainly an interesting year (to say the least!!!).
I got canned, I did most of my TO DO list, really I mean REALLY enjoyed the company of my cats, started a blog, became an ebay seller (when people actually pay for the stuff...LOL), opened my little boutique on Etsy, went crazy in the Pyrex collecting and started to really appreciate who I am. Aaaaaah! The wonderfulness of me! I found out in 2008 that I was much better and talented then I thought and certainly more creative.....I can't wait to discover what 2009 has in store for me!

The picture is of Hoppin' John, a traditionnal New Year's day dish that is supposed to bring you money....I made a big batch....LOL, it's delicious...Rice and black eyed peas, tomatoes and bacon (What's not to like! lol) I saw it on Paula Deen's show, thought it was a good idea and found one on the web...I do add some chicken stock, parsley and tons of green onions. Delicious!

Later my friends!