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Showing posts from March, 2014

The Spring cleaning of house, mind and soul.

I feel like I've had a rough week, but if you were to look back at the events on my agenda, you would tell me I was crazy.  How can birthday parties and supper dates be rough?  I think it was that constantly on the go feeling that really got to me.  While I do love the activity and the socializing, I really think that deep down, in the core of me, I'm a home body: I love being and doing at home.  By the end of the weekend I was completely wiped.  I almost feel like I should get this as my second tattoo....

I am glad that I can recognize when I'm feeling run down and jittery and I know that overbooking my life causes it.  That's a good thing.  That means that I can work to preventing it and creating better stress management strategies.  If you have been following my Lenten challenge, you'll see that I also failed in that department last week. It's all a cycle.   
I guess a spring cleaning can be good for the soul as well.......and that's not the only spring cl…

March Pinspired in mints

Shades of  mint, mixed with everything.
I actually forgot about this for the month and then at the end of the month I had to jam in a million outfits in a week.  People probably thought I was taking St. Patty's day too far. Or only owned green....
Here's my pin-spiration:

And here are my outfits that I manage to pull of in a week and a half.  

Observations: This is an easy colour to coordinate....browns...greys...blacks.. blardigans...military name it.  Good times.

Have a fashionable weekend

Thursdays, with Kyla

Thursday Night

Fried Rice (Recipe from The Looneyspoons Collection by Janet & Greta Podleski) & Egg Rolls

This is a great fried rice recipe.  Robbie and I were famished for supper so we each had two servings (oops!).  I liked using the sesame oil because it added a nice flavour to the dish.

BBQ Chicken Salad - with Spinach & Strawberries

Tonight we fired up the BBQ for the first time this year.  I used the meat tenderizer to thin out the chicken breasts and sprinkled them with black pepper and sweet BBQ sauce.  The salad was simple - spinach, cherry tomatoes, red onion and strawberries.  To top the salad off, I used a Berry Balsamic vinaigrette by Kraft.  It was a delicious meal.

Beef Barley Soup -  Recipe from Chatelaine (

For lunch I made a beef barley soup with homemade buns. The soup was great, especially the mushrooms.  I love mushrooms.  It was a very filling meal and perfect on a cold day.

1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 garlic clo…

What I'm eyeing up this week....

Okay. I got a little more eye rolls and stares of bafflement on my last week's post on overalls.  Apparently not everyone gets my desire.  I will still try them.  Also? I live on an acreage, I feel it should be a part of my costume.  We have a tractor, after all.
So this week I decided to go a little more normal for what I would be buying to update my foot wardrobe for the spring: shoes.

Kyla and I took some sister time for a leisurely stroll, Starbucks in hand, of the mall on Saturday.  The thing that caught my eye the most were the colours of shoes out there.  Mostly I was drooling over some mid height colourful Hunter boots, but I also saw some great sales at the Bay.

If I were shopping at the Bay this week, I would definitely be drooling over the following:

1- Flowers are so pretty and can dress up a neutral outfit. Liberty Art for on sale for 47.99$
2- A neutral flat is essential for spring.  A neutral flat that is metallic...awesome! Lord & Taylor on sale for 32.18$
3- …

Oh, them monkeys.

Conversations in the car can be so entertaining with kids...

Last week while chatting with Dan about dream jobs and what we would ideally doing, the talk went something like this....
Dan: That's what I wanted to do, be an urban planner.
Deena: That's what Autumn does.
Dan: She's living the dream.
Lucia: I want to be a watermelon.
Willis: And I want to be a sleeping zombie.

Willis often reads my texts for me while I'm driving and will even text back what I dictate. He's my little Siri.  We were planning on heading out to Warman to watch Dan play vball and the conversation when like this...
Deena: Will, can you read that text Dad just sent?
Willis: If it is a short drive I'd ask you to come.  It's a long drive just to see us get bitch slapped.....Mom, what's bitch slapped?
.....Sometimes I forget to tell Dan that he's reading them....ooops......

What we did... keep busy in the cold

This winter was not at all what I had envisioned or hoped for really as our first winter out at the acreage. The only really good thing, I guess, is the lack of snow storms...we haven't even used our snowblower once.  We have some snow, but never enough to clear...our toboganning is turning into dirt and on top of that, it has been a brutally cold.  I'm really looking forward when it starts warming up so we can start having some camp fires outside and fort building.
In the meantime, I've been trying to find some new activities to do to spice up our weekends.  In February we did a couple things:

1- We went to the glow in the dark mini golf at Mar's Mini Golf.  The kids LOVED it and have been asking to go, however, I wasn't a huge fan.  For one it is tough keeping the kids from running everywhere and interrupting other games.  Secondly it was ridiculously expensive.  7.50$ for a kid and 8.50$ for an adult.  Except the adults obv…

Thursdays, with Kyla

Wednesday Lunch

Root Vegetable Soup (Recipe from The Dietitians of Canada Cook Great Food cookbook)

This is such an easy and delicious soup to make.  I likethat I can just throw all the ingredients in at once and then let the delicious smell take over our house as the soup simmers for an hour.

4 cups water
1 beef bouillon cube
1 cup chopped potatoes
1 cup chopped carrots
1 cup chopped turnip
1/3 chopped celery
1/3 chopped onion
1 can (398 mL) tomatoes
1 can (398 mL) kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp paprika
Salt & pepper to taste
1/2 cup cut-up green beans

In a large stockpot, combine water, bouillon cube, potatoes, carrots, turnip, celery, onion, tomatoes, kidney beans and seasonings; bring to boil.  Reduce heat, cover and simmer for about 1 hour.  Add green beans during last 10 minutes of cooking.

Wednesday Supper

Baked Chicken (Recipe adapted from Miss American Thigh from The Looneyspoons Collection by Ja…

Window Shopping Wednesday

I think this is going to be my new favourite weekly post.  If you know me well, you know the following things about me:
- I love window shopping at the mall.  It is one of my happy places.  Give me a coffee and some free time and I love browsing the trends and touching the new textures and fabrics.
- I also love virtual window shopping at the many online boutiques I frequent.  Often.  Even daily.  

I like fake shopping so much that I figured I should do a weekly post that shows you what I WOULD buy if I was out actually shopping to bring something home or something I WANT to try.  

This week I have been obsessed thinking about overalls.  Yes, overalls.  I remember the awesome pair I had in grade 9...they were Esprit and the comfiest things I owned.  Now that I see the trend is coming back, I figure I could maybe, possibly still pull them off.  I tried convincing my friends......

Then I set out on an online hunt at my favourite boutiques.  This is what I came up with for my options:

1. Why a…

Under and Over 10.

Here are a couple of my recent favourite finds under and over 10$

Under 10$

Dove dry shampoo: I can now actually go 3 + days without shampooing my hair.  I've tried many brands, some up to 30$ a bottle and this one is by far my favourite.  I found it at Walmart for 4.77$, but it took some time to get it because every time I checked it was sold out.

Over 10$
Kyla had me try this eyelash primer, citing her love for it and once I did try it, I went out immediately and got some too.  My mascara stays on much better now, because of this and my lashes also look fuller.
 Another Tarte must have for me is the rim liner.  I love the skinniness of the stick and the fact that it stays on all the livelongday and then some.

5 on Friday

Here are 5 observations about the going-ons of my life:

1- Lent My workout journey is going okay.  Not stellar, but okay.  I'm remaining active and finding time to do something when I don't really want to (which is most of the time).  The kicker for me has been not having daycare this week (Kyla has been watching Lucia).  What this means for me is that Willis can't take the bus so I pick him up at 3:10 and I don't go to the gym during that time instead as he would normally take bus to daycare and I would get him after.  Ah well, it's a new week next week and daycare (as well as our normal routine) is back on.  Check out the Lenten tab above to see what I've been up to every day.
2- Instagram I have posted a picture on Instagram since Jan 1.  Insane.  This has only happened because I have been participating in a photo challenge that gets renewed every month.  I must say I have been enjoying it; it's fun to find a creative angle to take a cer…

Time to Eat!

Monday Night

Sweet Potato Curry - Recipe from The Best of Chef at Home - Essential recipes for today's kitchen by Chef Michael Smith

Monday night was curry night.  This was a brand new recipe for us to try. I can't say that I was blown away by this recipe but I think that when we ate, I also wasn't that hungry.  Robbie liked the recipe though.  I think I would try it again one more time and see how it turns out.  I cooked it in the slow cooker and the smell of the peanut butter and curry was delicious.  I am glad I tried this recipe though, it is good to step out of the box every once in a while.

A splash of vegetable oil
1 large onion, diced
3 or 4 cloves of garlic, chopped
A small knob of frozen ginger
1 tsp of Thai curry paste
2 sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 can (540 mL) of chickpeas
1 can (398 mL) of coconut milk
1 cup of orange juice
1/2 cup of peanut butter or any nut butter
A sprinkle or two of sea salt
1 cup or so of frozen green peas
Several handf…

Celebrating with the angels

Today would be Kelly's 35th birthday.
I haven't seen her since we were 21.  It saddens me to realize that 14 years separates me from the last time we hugged and laughed together.

I've been thinking a lot about how I want to go on celebrating her; she is so clearly with us in spirit in everything we do and still merits as much celebration as any of my earthly friends do.
I think about how much my life was enriched because of her simple and sweet presence and the friendship and love she gave me. I don't ever want to forget that gift.
So, borrowing from my good pal, Jordan, I'm going to do something that she did to celebrate her boy that left her much too early, Tripp.  She had borrowed from another blogger (read her post for details) and then posted the follow up a week later.  I participated in her #rememberingTripp experience and I can say that it brought me much joy going out of my way to do something kind for someone else.
So I shall do the same thing for Kelly…

My classroom decor

I just moved into my new classroom (we're in the middle of!) this semester and am just beginning to get a sense of what I want it to look like.  I've made a couple posters for the bulletin boards as a quick fix until I actually get time to make it look like the room I always envisioned. Of course, when I went to do this post on the weekend, my computer crashed and I couldn't access all the files I wanted to share with you.  So I then decided what better time than a cozy Saturday night to remake the pictures (and some for some colleagues) while I catch up on Glee.  So here is what I came up with, which are just designs I've put together from pins on Pinterest, using PicMonkey.

Five on Friday

Five things I've been daydreaming about all week:

1- Spring fashion.  If I were shopping this weekend, I'd be looking for some lightweight skirts and dresses that I could jazz up with nude or leopard flats.  Also some pieces to add colour to my otherwise dark wardrobe.  All this pieces have been pinned to my "Spring Style" board on Pinterest if you're interested in finding them.  They are all also from Simons or the Bay.

2- Attending the BlogHer conference July 24-26 in San Jose.  One of my favourites, the Bloggess is a keynote.  I do tons (and I mean tons)  of professional development for my profession as a teacher, but what about attending something for me...about the things I love to do in my spare time: blogging!!

3- BBQ season. I got a hankering for charboiled caesar salad and steaks.  Or just the smell of the BBQ will work. Or maybe just outside without snow and cold.  And no mosquitoes.
4-  Baseball season.  I have already started listening to the Blue Jay'…