Friday, June 29, 2012


Oh summer!!  I love you for so many reasons; warm sunshine, sundresses, short shorts, bare arms, swimming, the lake and I could go on but I won't.

I will concentrate on a particular favourite:  Strawberry season!  It's my fav!! 

We have a wonderful strawberry patch that we go to "Sunset U-pick" which is currently in danger of being rezoned for housing.  I signed the petition to keep it zone for whatever it is now because I desperately want the strawberries to stay!!  So if you live in Fredericton, head to Sunset U-pick for some amazing strawberries and sign that petition!!!

I found out on Monday that it had opened on Friday without my knowledge and since Monday was beautiful here and the next 3 days were supposed to rain I was desperately trying to figure out if they were open in the evening.  Yes, they are in fact!

I packed up the boys after a speedy supper, grabbed some containers and went in search of strawberries.

Sunset U-pick did not dissappoint, first they were open at 5:45pm (and actually until around 8pm I think, perhaps we didn't need to speed eat but I wasn't willing to take that chance!!) and they had so many huge bright red strawberries ready for picking. 

The boys did great, they gathered approximately 1/2 a box each (some were still a little pale but we will work on that!!) and perhaps ate the other half of their boxes!!

I spent my time there speed strawberry picking as I have no idea the exact attention span a 2 and 4 yr old have for this activity.  It can change at any moment!  So I gathered as many as I could and filled all the containers we had with us!  That equals HUGE success in my world.  I think they had fun, I was happy to have strawberries and everyone loved eating them!!!

We definitely collected enough since we had enough to drop off one box to my parents, a big bowl for individual bowls of yummy strawberries and some strawberry shortcakes AND 6 batches of strawberry jam!! 

So now I have many many containers of jam for the rest of the year.  I should be able to make it until next summer but I can't be sure so I will probably have to make a couple more just to be sure!!!

I always use the freezer jam pectin that uses 4 cups of fruit and 1 1/2 cups of sugar or splenda!!  It tastes the best and you have more fruit than sugar which is hasto be a good thing. 
A little trick I learn because I prefer my jam to not have chunks is to puree the strawberries after you mash them before you put the sugar in.  The package says don't puree but I do and it works great.   My kids love it and look how bright and fun it looks on toast!!!

I hope everyone enjoys this Canada Day long week and gets a few strawberries to eat!!  I think we are heading back for more on Saturday morning.  You just need to have strawberry shortcake for Canada Day weekend!!!

Have fun and be safe!!!


Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Pink Lemonade Cupcakes

Since summer is upon us, although here we wouldn't know that with the rain and wind today!  Sunny days are right around the corner and it made me think of pink lemonade for sunshiny days in the backyard.

I found this recipe from Sweet Cheeks in the Kitchen blog (actually found it on pinterest) and decided I had to give it a go.

I had to revamp the recipe a bit because I never buy buttermilk I just create it using milk and vinegar.  However, I have yet to learn to make anything other than 1 cup of it.  So since the above recipe needed 1/4 cup of it, I had to quadrupal it.  Slightly tricky and the first attempt I got it wrong!

Leaving out 4 egg whites really messes with a recipe!!  Pretty pink hockey pucks (all 48 of them, 24 regular and 24 mini cupcakes) in the garbage!!!

Pretty but yucky tasting.....garbage they went!

So for an employee's birthday I decide it was an excellent reason for attempt number 2.  Armed with my 4 extra egg whites, I thought I was ready to go!

The cupcakes did end up turning out great, they are a little less pink than the first batch but tasted good this time!!

A few little cracks in the top but definitely showed promise!!  After taking a short TV break, I went to start the frosting.....which was supposed to be pink lemonade as well.  Apparently I did not check my lemonade purchase and bought regular lemonade as my second can.  So vanilla buttercream it was!!!

It's actually my favourite frosting in the whole world so I wasn't entirely dissappointed!

They were quite yummy and I was pleased they turned out this time.

A little sprinkles for added festiveness and a deliverying I went!

Here is the quadrupaled recipe:

Pink Lemonade Cupcakes
(makes 36 cupcakes)

4 cups of flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2 cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
8 egg whites
1 1/3 cups (1 can) thawed frozen pink lemonde
1 cup buttermilk (can use almost one cup of milk and 1 tbsp of vinegar)
pink food colouring

1. Preheat over to 350 F
2. In a small bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt
3. In a large bowl, mix together sugar, oil, egg whites and pink lemondae concentrate.
4. Alternate mixing in flour mixture and buttermilk, until smooth.  Batter will be quite runny, that's the way it's supposed to be.
5. Add a little pink or red food colouring to make it a more fun pink colour and then scoop into liners.
6. Bake for 20-25 mins
7.  Cool and frost

Pink Lemonade Frosting
6-8 cups icing sugar
1 cup of butter, soften (salted, if using unsalted add 1/4 tsp of salt)
1/2 tbsp pink lemonade concentrate

Cream butter first then add pink lemonade concentrate and then approx 5-6 cups of icing sugar and taste and add until you like it!

**Incase Pink Lemonade Frosting seems like it will be too much pink lemonade, here's a vanilla buttercream frosting that tastes good with them.

Vanilla Buttercream
1 cup of soften butter
1/2 cup of milk
2 tsp of vanilla
6-8 cups of icing sugar

Cream butter first, then add milk and vanilla and add about 5 cups of icing sugar and taste and add until you like it!

Well I hope that you enjoy this recipe for your summer festivities!!!

What's your favourtie summer time treat?

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Happy Father's Day

Since I wrote a post for Mother's Day, I figured I should give equal opportunity for Father's Day!

So I would like to wish Joel a very happy father's day!!!  He is an amazing father and his boys love him so much.  They make me so happy when I watch them follow him around and try to do things he does!  He is patiently waiting to take them to the golf course and loving teaching them new tricks.  Their giggles and glee with wrestling and playing football is music to my ears! 
I must admit, I am happy but a little sad when they want Daddy instead of mommy but it just proves what a good man I married and wonderful dad they have.  We did good!!!

Since Joel is a product of his parents, it goes to stand that my father-in-law Larry is a wonderful, caring man.  He has welcomed me in their family since day one.  This worked out well since within the first few weeks of me living up in Carleton county I had to call him when I ended up in a ditch!!!  He is a great father to his children and a wonderful grandfather (Bucky) to his grandchildren!

And last but not father, Wesley.  Or Chopper as we like to call him.  I have been a daddy's girl forever!   He has always been there for me when I needed him and like most, sometimes when I didn't.  I never doubt his love for me or for those he loves! His a great dad and a wonderful grampy (Yaya) to his grandchildren!  He has a big heart and some great sayings! 
He drives me nuts sometimes but I love him!

So Happy Father's Day to these three wonderful father's in my life and to all you other great father's out there! 

I hope you all had a great day!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Shoes, shoes and oh a little more shoes!

68 pairs of shoes!  That's the amount of shoes/boots/sandals/sneakers that I found around my house yesterday while attempting to organize!

Might not be a lot to some but it was actually more than I thought!  I was a little surprised.  I did however go through them and removed 13 of them.  Leaving me with just 55 pairs!  Some of the removed shoes where very old, hurt when I wore them and really how many pairs of back up sneakers does one need??

I enjoyed going through them and reminding myself of what I had to choose from.  I felt inspired by my friend Jill's blog post about revamping her wardrobe.  I had shoes everywhere and had been ignoring the mess for many many months.  But it was time for them to all have a home!  They now all have a proper place and hopefully this will make finding them and remember them a little easier.

When you have a giant pile of shoes.......shouldn't you jump in them and take pictures??

Grab a shoe and say cheese!

The organizing continued a little into my clothes closet but just enough to make room for some shorts and pack away some winter clothes that were taking up room. 

Thankfully I did go through the winter clothes to make room because I found two new pairs of shorts I bought at the end of the last summer season and was apparently hiding them under 5 wool sweaters!  I purchased 4 pairs of shorts to replace most of my old ones a few weekends ago and luckily didn't go for beige or black.  So now I am doing great for was a happy moment!

My equally fashion crazy friend Amanda is going to come up in a few weeks and we are going to go through the clothes to see what should stay and what should go, what I might need and how to work what I have! 

Stay tuned for that adventure....we will document and post!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012


Any of you that know me, know that I am a closet celebrity junkie!

I will however judge the papparazzi but still purchase the magazines that print the papparazzi pictures because I still want to see the pictures.  Odd I know but that's how I work!

It's not that I want to be a celebrity or that I really want to stalk a celebrity (much) but I love to see what they are wearing! It's really about the clothes; what they are wearing, who they are wearing, how they are wearing it and where they are going in it. I am only missing the why and believe me there are some serious why's out there!! Surprisingly I watch and look at a lot of things for the clothes such as all awards shows. I don't care who wins just as long as they look cute!

But then I watch an interview on TV or read an article about them and think...they would be fun to hang out with, I bet they are really just normal people with privilege!!

Since this blog is supposed to be about all (or at least an approved censored version) of my random thoughts. My new goal is to tell you about what I am thinking about my thoughts on celebrities. Most likely my favs, least favs, who's doing crazy stuff, wondering where did that person go....things like that. I hope you enjoy!

I am going to start with one of my favourites:

Reese Witherspoon

First of she always looks great, even just when she's around town.  She seems like the nicest person going, I don't think you could ever not like her. I assume just as everyone else that she has bad days and is cranky but she just seems genuinely nice! Perhaps she doesn't love hearing that but there are worse things to be

Second, she just seems so normal. She is always out and about with her kids, seems to eat real food and dresses like a normal the way, I love this dress. It's a great colour and I would like to have this in my wardrobe.

She also gets run over by little old ladies (and didn't yell or sue anyone!) she just wore a band aid on her head for a few weeks!

Reese and I couldn't share clothes if we became best friends though because I am a giant compared to her, so that's a downfall!!!

From the articles written about her and the interviews she's done, she is a down to earth person who loves what they do. What can be bad with that.

She is always great to watch in a movie, sure I am a sucker for a romantic comedy so I might be bias but they usually do pretty well, so I can't be the only one.

Who is your favourite celebrity?

Thursday, June 7, 2012


I had posted in the spring about my concern over the newly planted tulips

My concerns: were they going to grow, did I plant them upside down, are the squirrels going to eat them?? (ok, that last one wasn't a concern but is now!!)

Well, we got TULIPS!!!!!

And Irises

The tulips are the second round, I put in different kinds that come at different times (didn't know that until now).  Forgot to take pictures before the massacre took place.  The first batch was apparently very tempting but not yummy for the squirrels as they continued to take the flowers off of them and only eat a few and leave the rest on the ground!   The weapons almost came out!

Liam is impressed with the tulips but didn't want his picture taken with them.  Rhys loves all things outdoors, so he was ready for picture time in the front yard!

The lovely irises were planted by the lady of house before me and miraculously survived the garage being on top of it and then rocks around it! 

I continue to attempt my gardening adventures but I won't expect miracles just yet!  For now I will relish in the beautiful of my tulips and the random flowers that continue to grow around my yard!!!

Perhaps we will get some annuals as long as I promise Joel to diligently water them.  Which I am not so good at!

I hope you have a chance to stop and enjoy the flowers today!!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Cinnamon butter!

A fantastic breakfast is a great way to start the day and this is raisin bread French toast with cinnamon butter was nothing short of a good time!!!

We had a great time hanging out with each other, bought some clothes and of course a little present for the boys!!!

Friday, June 1, 2012

7 years

Monday I celebrated my 7th wedding anniversary to my wonderful husband Joel.

As time goes on perhaps the importance of the date isn't as important as the everyday celebration.  Monday we barely saw each other.  I was out of town for most of the day and Joel had committed to a business league golf night which just happened to starte on Monday.  I was pleasantly surprised to find beautiful flowers when I arrived home at supper time.  Since I know Joel loves some old fashion baking, I surprised him with some shortbread cookies with jam in the middle.  I thought they were jam jams but I am not sure that is the correct name for them.  He said they tasted good though!!

Even though that's how monday went, we are heading to Bangor for an evening away without our kiddies!  I am excited to enjoy some uninterupted talking, shopping without constantly scanning for my children and eating my whole meal in one sitting.

Marriage is a wonderful thing but not an easy thing.  I wish everyone an easy marriage but I know few who have one.  It takes work to join your life with someone else's, to remain your self but work together.  My husband and I have been through some real lows and some real highs and I think those moments and all the ones in between have made us stronger.  We have been forced to deal with real issues, real feelings and create and work on real results.  Something worth keeping is something worth fighting for and that's what a marriage is.  As we continue to grow, change and become the person we aspire to be, we are required to change, grow and revamp our marriage.  Life, work, and children all change the elements of a marriage and those changes require effort to keep it going.

I would like to wish everyone a happy marriage day!!!  Everyone should make a little time this weekend to work on and enjoy their marriage! 

Have a great weekend!

On our rainy May 28th, 2005 wedding day!!