Tuesday, March 31, 2009

1 year anniversary

No pictures with this post. Saturday March 28th to the day...I have been free of work for a year.

Now I will return to work eventually, but I still don't know what I want to do. Except that I would very much like to work from home or nearby. 3 hours of daily commute is too much for me.....

I consider myself lucky because I don't HAVE to go back to work right NOW. Dan has a steady paycheck and my unemployement insurance covers the basics. I can't afford luxuries, but as long as the bills are paid. It's okay by me!

Anyways for me it's a question of priority, I don't want to go back to work so we can buy more stuff and load up the credit cards. I'm done with that! Here we don't have any Joneses to keep up with....

I ask God to put me on the right path and he will because he's always there for me, watching over me and guiding my life.

Have a happy day!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Earth hour

Saturday night, nothing good on TV....There's never anything on TV on saturday night. Except SNL and usually too late for little old me!

So what a wonderful occasion to participate in Earth Hour! We went dark from 8:30 to 9:30 last night and spent the time eating microwave popcorn and spying on our neighbors to see if their houses were dark....I live in a small dead end street with only 6 houses and I'm sad to report that only 50% of the residents participated....But I'm positive that next year more will do.

When you think about it every little gesture counts! Shutting off lights when not in use, replacing light bulbs with neon bulbs or LED, recycling, composting, shopping locally...Planting drought resistant plants and even replacing grass with plants that don't require as much water and of course using reusable shopping bags! And those pesky plastic water bottles! We use a Brita to filter our drinking water and the water is sweet and refreshing!

Shopping locally is hard in a cold climate, let's face it we would only eat carrots,potatoes,cabbage and onions in winter(good veggies but lack variety!!!). I try to buy products from my province at least, so now my dishwashing liquid (Bio-Vert)comes from Laval (15 min north of Montreal) and is certified enviromental choice, my powdered soap for the dishwasher (produits ecolo lemieux) is not only biodegredable but made in Montreal and my detergent (La parisienne) has the same provenance. As for the price well they have come a long way, the liquid dish soap and the detergent are really competitively priced and I find them less expensive than 'National Brands' quite often! The powdered dishwasher soap is 8.00$ for 2 kilos and lasts a really long time. So I figure I'm also a winner there!

Doing my part makes sense!


Monday, March 23, 2009

Good food!

I love trying new recipes, but I find that nothing was enticing me lately....Too much recession cooking! Don't get me wrong, some of the best recipes are thrifty recipes and I have been cooking like that for ever.

My mom was really frugal and my dad as well so I went to the frugal cooking school. I make my own chicken broth, I buy chicken breats with the bones in (cheaper) and rarely buy convenience food.

So I was really surprised to see (first photo) the salmon in pastry sacks on the Rachel Ray show...that one got my tastes buds going! Not exactly a cheap recipe, but if you like salmon it is an excellent recipe for company (or a romantic diner...) Very tasty and easy! Here's the link : http://www.rachaelray.com/recipe.php?recipe_id=2638

Last night I tried Sticky Hoisin Chicken from Chatelaine and that was delicious as well. Skinless,sweet, simply yummy! And the chicken tight were on sale!

I found that recipe while I was cleaning my humongous folder where I keep all the recipes I save from the magazines....I really should stop doing that because I try maybe 5% and the rest just yellow....

I served it with asian coleslaw and steamed broccoli....Mucho Yummo!

I made another batch of sauce to marinate small chunks of tofu...That was tonight's super....Delicious as well

If you ever make one of those recipes,please leave a comment I'd like to hear from you!
Goodnight my friends

Thursday, March 19, 2009

They're back!

When you feel you can't deal with the cold, snow,wind and ice. When you're getting more and more depressed. When you feel the only thing that will cure your winter blues is another pizza slice orbowl of caramel corn, just then when you're about to loose it, they come back...

The canada geese!!! All loud and noisy, they truly are the harbingers of spring!
I saw a couple of flights of geese yesterday going to the church basement. They brought me such joy!

I feel this winter has been very,very long, not that cold at least in southern Quebec but very long....At least to me! Maybe it's the 'I don't work thing'...Don't know!

Tonite to celebrate the arrival of spring I'm gonna try to fire up the old BBQ...and make us some good juicy meaty hamburgers....served with fried mushrooms, dijon mustard and cream cheese...OMG! BBQ heaven....Of course the buns will be toasted ( I need my buns toasted...in a food sense! Now get your minds out of the gutter people!!! LOL)

How is it that most burgers i see in triple D (diners,drive-in and dives) don't have the toasted buns? Guy if you read this please leave a comment. I'm a big fan of yours and I just have to know.....

Bbqcuing (is that a word?) represents freedom and no responsabilities.....It means I just have to throw some meat on it and presto changeo SUPPER!!! And add to that a couple of tomato wedges and cuke slices and you have a salad....good times!

Until then, have a nice night and euh... Welcome back to the geese!!!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

1.69 $

It's been a while (a big long while, or at least it seems) since I trhifted and bought things for myself. It's mainly because I didn't find things I needed. Since I have quite a large collection of Pyrex, when I find a piece I ususally have it, it's too expensive or it's chipped.
This has been quite a lesson to learn: I must not bring home pieces that are cracked or chipped or faded. At one point I got so excited that I was blinded by Pyrexia and couldn't see anything in my collecting frenzy....Then I would come down from the high and be soooooo disappointed to find that the bowl wasn't up to par.....So this morning I decided to go to my friendly neighborhood church basement for a nice quiet thrift hunt....Well, well! I found this delightful Pyrex flameware coffee pot, one I hadn't seen before, with a clip on the metal band and so it is real easy to clean, a super cute ladybug pilowcase and a card of black crystal vintage buttons and all for the super dooper price of one dollar!!! It doesn't get any better than this....lol
I think my father will adopt the coffee pot because he now collects Flameware and Fry glass....

Also on the thrifting front 2 weeks ago I went downtown (Montreal) to the salvation army and found one of these Corning army bowls that I keep seeing in Flickr and Pyrex love. For a piece that has probably been to the front it is in wonderful shape a bit scratched but let's face it I have a couple of scratches as well!!! And I paid .69 cents for it, so I figured it is worth it.
On a non thrifting subject.....I started watching Buffy the vampire slayer season 4 (I tell you it's like eating chips.....) And too bad Angel left 'coz Buffy is all sad and moppy....
I hope to blog tomorrow as well because I feel I have slacked off.....Don't put your Pyrex in the dishwasher....

Friday, March 13, 2009

Spring is near

I've been having "The itch" for a couple of weeks now...the itch to start seeds indoors! So I figured it's time to start tomatoes and peppers....
I can just taste their sunkissed goodness....Hum....Tomatoes!
I start by soaking some peat pellets (in a pink Pyrex!) and then placing them in the trays. I have been starting seeds for about 10 years now and I find that smaller trays (6 pellets) are easier to handle at this stage because the seeds don't all germinate at the same time.
I place one or two seeds in each pellet and cover them with a bit of peat then I place the green house cover on the tray. As you can see on the second picture I misplaced/broke a cover and replaced it with a zipper bag( I hope this works)
So far I sowed 4 kinds of tomaotes (Polish linguisa,bush beefsteak, sweet 100, and yellow cherry tomatoes),ground cherries,3 kinds of peppers (pepperoncini,sweet pickles,ancho). Next week I will sow basil, flat parsley,kale and surely other veggies.....
Last summer the pepperoncini were a great success and delicious. The ancho chilies didn't even sprout, so time will tell. Since I live in a colder climate (zone 41/2-5) some plants just don't want to grow in my garden. I'll keep you posted for sure!
Today was also Friday the 13th so pancakes were a must to ensure the flow of money to the house....to pay the bills of course!!! lol

The third picture illustrates the crepes suzette process.
This is my 100th post! Time flies very fast....I started in June 2008 and I never thought I had things to say to fill all those posts!
I truly appreciate your comments, so keep leaving them!!!
Thank you for stopping by! Here's to another 100th posts! Here,here!!!
Be passionate! :-)

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Angel update

You remember that post when I said that I was watching the complete Angel series?

Well I finished season 3. I turned the house upside down trying to find the last 2 seasons (really! I nearly lost sleep over that...I was like a maniac) and nothing! After a couple of days I realised that I never had them, I never bought them....(rats!)

So now I'm on the prowl for Angel....lol. I tried Ebay but what I found was way too expensive....I tried some internet reatilers...expensive as well....I went to Walmart (I never go to Walmart, I associate that store with the SPAWN OF SATAN! Need I go into the union thing?, the low wages? the harrassement? the blackmail of local companies?-Granted the prices are good for the customers....) So there I am in Walmart, battling the crazed bargain hunters with their carts full of kids....repeating "Don't stop and look, don't stop and touch just go to the electronics department"...Well they only had seasons 1 & 2...Bummer! Big badaboum bummer!!! LOL

So I started to watch Buffy the vampire slayer.....

Friday, March 6, 2009

Pizza ? Did someone say Pizza???

Wow already my 98th post! Time flies.....
I don't think I'll be doing anything special to celebrate my 100th post, because very often I can't enter other blogger's giveaways because I'm from Canada....So back at you! And I officially know of 2 Canadians who follow my blog....One of them being my dad!!!

On to the other matters! I LOVE pizza! Last night Dan (my better half) was kind enough to take me to my fave pizza place....Woodland Pizza in Verdun (my old neighbourhood). It's fascinating that the taste didn't change after 49 years. Well actually I have been going and ordering from them since 1991 and still that amazing dough to pepperoni to cheese ratio....We ordered a bigger one so we could have some for lunch today!

It's 20 to 9 in the A.M. and I'm starting to hear the pizza calling me from the fridge.....Man oh man that is hard!
Hum pizza....I'm so like Homer Simpson for pizza...(and for beer! lol)
My other fave pizza joint is Bill's pizza in OOB Maine (Old orchard Beach). Their plain pie is to die for! Really....I can wait to sink my teeth in a big juicy slice......LOL
I won't eat just any old pizza....I don't like thick crust or too much cheese (2 inches of cheese on the pizza is too much!!!). I'm not crazy about Pizza Hut or Dominos (well not Domino's in Quebec at least, I had a great one in Cape Ann, Mass a while back).Never had a Papa Gino's....And the one near my house (Expo pizzeria) is ok, but I think the pizza man or woman is not giving their 100%. When I order thin crust not too much cheese, very often the crust and the cheese are too toasted (dark) so not as great as it could be....
Some of my earliest memories are eating pizza with my dad at Pizzeria Napolitaine on Park ave in Montreal and of wanting pizza for supper for my B-Day. Waiting for the bus after figure skating practice in front of Pendelis Pizza in Outremont ( I was 10) and asking for the little ball of bread they put in the middle of the pie (not that weird looking little round plastic table most places now use) . As a young adult I had a boyfriend in Park Extension and a great love affair with a pizza place on Bloomfield ave. I swear when we broke off I was more sad to leave the pizza place than him, and there was No way I would go back to that WEIRD neighbourhood....LOL
And I should not forget the pizza and calzones from Trattoria Gioia in Rome, I think we would eat there nearly every night.....
Wow quite a trip down memory lane.....

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Adventures in bread making....

I love bread! About 2 years ago I took the plunge and started trying to make bread.
I say trying because I'm not always succesful....really!
I tried making baguette (that was real awful) ,regular white bread (better as toast), biscuits(too thin), slow cooker brown bread (just like a big muffin but real tasty) and an amazing bread that takes forever and you need to preheat a dutchoven for ages in the oven, but the result has been really,really good!
Lately after a really long no baking period, I tried hamburger buns (That's definitely Guy Fieri's fault...lol...Dinners,drive-ins and dives). The buns didn't rise properly and I ended up with slider size buns, good but too compact. Yesterday I trid Naan bread, a traditional indian bread, a recipe from Emeril...Well Emeril you are full of....It tasted like Pita bread not Naan!!! Well I ate most of it...hehehe! I have tons of lentil curry leftover, so I'm trying another recipe....To be continued! lol

On another subject....I love opening my email and finding I sold something on Etsy! It always makes my day!
I hope to save enough to pay half of the car's repairs....Positive thinking!!!
I read a lot of blogs and people plan their weekly menus a lot! I can plan for Friday,Saturday and Sunday but that's it! After it's a long string of leftovers...I am so grateful Dan loves leftovers! My dad is a big leftover person too and my mom (let's not go there!!!) was definitely the queen of leftovers...oh yeah definitely....lol
Tonite I plan to make some kind of asian cold noodle salad with green and red peppers, spring onions, a spicy dressing with chicken and maybe shrimp.....Should be D-E-L-I-C-I-O-U-S!!!
Until next time....Be kind to your neighbors, they might have Pyrex (I couldn't help myself...I find this hilarious....)