Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Make It Monday

Here I am late yet again. Oh well. We had our Patrick family Christmas on Saturday and it was a good time. The cousins did a gift exchange and Tyler got a sweet CAT truck with Mega Bloks. He likes it a lot, and has been pushing it around the house ever since.

Here is this week's recipe:


1 pound thin spaghetti
4 Tbsp Salted Butter
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
2 cloves Garlic, Minced
1 whole Lemon, Juiced and Zested
2 cups Sour Cream
1/2 tsp Kosher Salt, or more to taste
Plenty of Grated Parmesan Cheese
Flat-leaf Parsley, Chopped
Extra lemon juice

Cook spaghetti until al dente. In a skillet, melt butter with olive oil over LOW HEAT. When butter is melted, add minced garlic. Squeeze lemon juice into the pan. Turn off heat. Add sour cream and stir together. Add lemon zest and salt, taste, then add more salt if necessary. Pour mixture over drained spaghetti and stir together and pour into oven safe dish. Bake covered 15 minutes. Remove foil and bake another 7 - 10 minutes. When removed from oven, squeeze more lemon juice over top. Top generously with Parmesan, then chopped parsley. Give a final squeeze of lemon juice.
Serene with crusty French bread and green salad.

I really liked this, but Trevor wasn't a huge fan. He though it was too dry.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Winter Wonderland

We have been getting so much snow here the last few days. I would say at least 8 inches, maybe more! It snowed non-stop on Wednesday, and then a bit more yesterday. It was crazy, but now looks beautiful outside. 

We set up our tree last week, and Tyler had a blast helping us. He now likes to break the candy canes in half, eat a bite, and then throw it away. Oh well, I don't like them much anyway! 

Also, with all the snow, Trevor and Tyler have been building a fort in our back yard. It is coming along nicely. Tyler has been helping fill the wheelbarrow with snow, as well as digging it out. It's fun to watch him try so hard to help with it!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Make It Monday on Wednesday

I'm a little late this week, but I made this for dinner last night and we loved it


Sweet Citrus Chicken

Sweet Citrus Chicken

what you need

1 cup hot water
1 pkg. (120 g) Stove Top Lower Sodium Stuffing Mix for Chicken
4 small boneless skinless chicken breasts (1 lb./450 g), pounded to 1/2-inch thickness
1/2 cup orange juice
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 Tbsp. non-hydrogenated margarine, melted

make it

HEAT oven to 400ºF.
ADD hot water to stuffing mix; stir just until moistened.
PLACE chicken in 13x9-inch baking dish. Mix juice, sugar and butter until well blended;
pour over chicken. Top with stuffing.
BAKE 30 min. or until chicken is done (170°F).

kraft kitchens tips

Serving Suggestion
Serve with your family's favourite hot steamed vegetable.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Shark Attack! UPDATED

Last night we were doing some Christmas shopping. We went to Toys R Us to get something for Tyler, and we came across this stuffed shark. Trevor was making shark noises with it at first, which absolutely terrified Tyler. He wouldn't even look at the shark. A couple of minutes later, he was trying to get it off of the shelf. I got it down for him, and he was giving it hugs, telling it 'hi'. It was so cute. We decided to get it for him. When I put him to bed, he usually hugs me and plays with my hair until he falls asleep, but not last night. He was hugging his "Sharky" all night long. It was hilarious. We have a picture, but it's at home and I'm at work, so I'll post it later. For now, here's a picture of the toy so you can see the humor in this whole situation. 

Also, lately Tyler has been giving us "the look", as we call it. We weren't sure where he got it from, but I guess in this picture it's pretty apparent.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Make It Monday-Snickerdoodle Theme

I have made the Snickerdoodle cookies, but not the cupcakes. I have to say that this is the best Snickerdoodle recipe I've tried to date. The cookies stay soft and chewy, and of course are delicious. The cupcakes sound like they'd be really good, but I haven't had a chance to try them yet. Both recipes are from the website http://www.annies-eats.com/

Yield: about 30 cookies

2 1/4 cups (11 1/4 oz.) unbleached all-purpose flour
2 tsp. cream of tartar
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
12 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened but still cool
1/4 cup vegetable shortening
1 1/2 cups (10 1/2 oz.) granulated sugar, plus 3 tbsp. for rolling dough
2 large eggs
1 tbsp. ground cinnamon, for rolling dough

Adjust oven racks to upper- and lower-middle positions. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter, shortening and 1 1/2 cups sugar on medium speed until well combined, 1 to 1 1/2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the eggs, and beat again until combined, about 30 seconds. Add in the dry ingredients and beat at low speed until just combined, about 20 seconds.

In a small, shallow bowl, combine the 3 tablespoons sugar and the cinnamon for rolling the dough. Stir or shake well to combine. Working with a heaping tablespoon of dough each time, roll the dough into 1 1/2-inch balls. Roll the balls in the cinnamon sugar mixture and place them on the prepared baking sheets, about 2 inches apart. Use a drinking glass with a flat bottom to gently flatten the dough balls to 3/4-inch thickness (butter the bottom of the glass before starting, and dip it in sugar between cookies if it begins to stick).

Bake until the edges of the cookies are beginning to set and the center are soft and puffy, 9-11 minutes, rotating the baking sheets front to back and top to bottom halfway through the baking time. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets 2-3 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

Yield: about 28 cupcakes

For the cupcakes:
1½ cups all-purpose flour
1½ cups cake flour, sifted
1 tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 tbsp. ground cinnamon
2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1¾ cups sugar
4 large eggs
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1¼ cups milk

For the frosting: (the recipe I use from Betty Crocker-Emily)
3 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1 to 2 tablespoons milk

For garnish:
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
2 tbsp. sugar
Mini snickerdoodles*

To make the cupcakes, preheat the oven to 350° F. Line cupcake pans with paper liners. Combine the flours, baking powder, salt and cinnamon in a medium bowl; whisk to combine. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Beat in the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Blend in the vanilla. With the mixer on low speed, add in the dry ingredients in three additions alternating with the milk, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. Beat each addition just until incorporated.

Divide the batter evenly between the prepared cupcake liners, filling each three-quarters full. Bake, rotating the pans halfway through, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 18-20 minutes. Allow to cool in the pans about 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the frosting, mix powdered sugar and butter with spoon or electric mixer on low speed. Stir in vanilla and 1 tablespoon of the milk. Gradually beat in just enough remaining milk to make frosting smooth and spreadable. If frosting is too thick, beat in more milk, a few drops at a time. If frosting becomes too thin, beat in a small amount of powdered sugar

Frost the cooled cupcakes as desired. (I used an Ateco tip #829 to frost these cupcakes.) In a small bowl, whisk together the ground cinnamon and sugar. Sprinkle a pinch of the cinnamon-sugar on top of each frosted cupcake. Garnish with mini snickerdoodles.

*To make the mini snickerdoodles, I used a half recipe of regular snickerdoodles (and didn’t even use all of the dough) and rolled the dough into tiny balls, about ¾-inch diameter. I reduced the baking time to about 8-10 minutes.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Make It Monday

I thought I'd join in on sharing a recipe every Monday. We had this one last week for the first time and it was absolutely delicious! I really recommend it.

Tortellini with Roasted Cauliflower and Tomatoes

4 cups (1 L) small (1 inch/2.5 cm) cauliflower florets (1/2 head)
2 cups (500 mL) grape or cherry tomatoes
4 cloves garlic, peeled
1 tbsp (15 mL) butter, melted
1 package (350 g) fresh or frozen tortellini
2 tbsp (30 mL) all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp (2 mL) dried thyme or basil
1/4 tsp each Salt and pepper
2 cups (500 mL) Milk
1/4 cup (50 mL) freshly grated Canadian Parmesan cheese
Preheat oven to 450°F (230°C).

On a rimmed baking sheet, toss cauliflower florets, tomatoes and garlic with butter; spread out evenly, placing garlic pieces to one side of the sheet. Roast for about 20 min, stirring twice (without mixing in garlic), until cauliflower and garlic are browned and tender and tomatoes have burst open.
Meanwhile, in large pot of boiling water, cook tortellini according to package directions; drain and set aside.
Whisk flour, thyme and 1/4 tsp (1 mL) each, salt and pepper into Milk. Pour into pasta pot and bring to a boil over medium heat, whisking constantly. Reduce heat and boil gently, whisking, for about 3 min or until thick. Remove from heat. Mash garlic and stir into sauce then stir in remaining roasted vegetables. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Divide tortellini among serving bowls and spoon vegetables and sauce over top. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

Friday, November 26, 2010


I saw this on the internet today and thought it was kind of clever. I don't really like Jeff Foxworthy, but this is what he had to say, and a lot of it is spot on.

You know you live in Alberta...

If your local Dairy Queen is closed from September to May.

If you've worn shorts and a parka at the same time.

If someone in a Home Depot offers you assistance and they don't work there.

If you measure distance in hours.

If you carry jumpers in your car and your wife knows how to use them.

If you've had a lengthy conversation with someone who dialed a wrong number.

If "vacation" means going anywhere south of Edmonton for the weekend.

If you find 10 degrees Fahrenheit "a little chilly".

If you have switched from 'heat' to 'air conditioning' and back again in the same day.

If you know several people who have hit a deer more than once.

If you install security lights on your house and garage, but leave both unlocked.

If you design your kid's halloween costumes to fit over a snowsuit.

If you have more miles on your snowblower than your car.

If you know all 4 seasons: almost winter, winter, still winter, and road construction.

If driving is better in the winter because potholes are filled with snow.

If you can drive 75 mph through 2 feet of snow during a blizzard without flinching.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

10 Top Films

These are my Top Ten Movies, in no particular order.

Last of the Mohicans (Director's Expanded Edition)
Pride and Prejudice - The Special Edition (A&E, 1996)Never Been Kissed
A Christmas Story [VHS]

Getting to know you....

I am so bored at work today, and I saw this on someone else's blog, so I'm going to do another "get to know me" post.

Tell me your ten favorite books:

Hunger Games Series

            The Hunger Games                 Bridge To Terabithia                                                                

Little WomenRoll Of Thunder Hear My Cry

Shopaholic Gift Set (Shopaholic Ties the Knot / Shopaholic Takes Manhattan / Confessions of a Shopaholic)

Pride and Prejudice


Wuthering HeightsWhere Are You Now?: A Novel

Ps I Love You
Tell me your ten favorite musical artists:
Past Masters  Blender
Southern Voice  Greatest Hits: The Ultimate Collection

More Than You Think You AreGet Closer

Best of Creedence Clearwater Revival  Smash (Rm)

Fly  Taylor Swift
Three places you would love to visit?



Monday, November 15, 2010

Recent Pictures

Weekend Getaway

This past weekend, I left the boys at home and headed to Dead Man's Flats for a couple of days of relaxation with all of the Patrick Women. It was a really good time.

I made a short movie trailer about our trip, but am having trouble uploading it. It is on Facebook if anyone is interested in watching it.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Halloween and Other Randomness

There are some girls in our complex that come to our door most nights of the week and ask if Tyler can come play. They are about 5-8 years old. He loves to go and run around with them. One day, the one on the left told me "He's just so cute I want to kill myself!". I wasn't sure what to say to that, but it was pretty funny.

We got Ty a Race Car Driver costume from Old Navy for Halloween. It fit him perfectly and he looked awesome. We didn't take him trick or treating. We went to Trevor's brothers Spooktacular out at Wizard Lake. He puts on a really good Spook Alley through the woods and hundreds of people come out to it. It was really good. Tyler had fun hanging out in the garage, where they had a dance and some treats. It was a fun night. Tonight we handed out candy, and Tyler loved giving chocolate bars to kids. He was so excited every time he heard a noise outside.

Tyler has learned how to walk up the stairs hanging on to the railing. He is totally fine going up, but not so hot at coming down. It especially makes me nervous when he tries to do so on the basement stairs because it has no walls against the railing.