A Year. It Comes…

…and it goes! Last post I mentioned we celebrated my darling niece’s 1st birthday. It was a fabulous day at the farm and there were so many people to enjoy the day with. The hubby and I took oodles of photos (see below!) and we all ate cake (among other things).

Continue reading A Year. It Comes…

Birthday Shenanigans…the Finale!

Okay, I know, the last post or two have been very “birthday-centric,” but it was my thirtieth birthday. Sorry, not sorry. To round out all of the excitement, I’ve got some fun things to talk about and share with you! Keep reading if you’re at all interested.

Continue reading Birthday Shenanigans…the Finale!

Happy Birthday to Me!

Okay so this is a few days late because I put up the last post on my actual birthday. At least this way I can tell you all how the whole day went!

On Wednesday, February 1st my twenties were left in the dust as I took a bold step into my thirties. I am going to be completely boring and tell you I didn’t do too much to celebrate on the actual day… more celebrations are upcoming: a treat day at the spa today and celebrating with my family on the weekend. Read on if you’re at all curious!

Continue reading Happy Birthday to Me!

Feeling Festive?

Hello All,

Well I hate to say it, but Christmas 2016 went by in a blur. As i’m sure it did last year and the year before that. I still can’t believe that after all of the build up and excitement, its all over!

**warning in advance: not a short post!** Continue reading Feeling Festive?

Family Time

This past weekend, the hubby and I decided to surprise my Grandma with a visit and some treats. Initially I wanted to arrive by 11am to her place, but it took me a bit to get moving on Saturday morning. Once I was finally dressed and good to head out, I realized just how much my little bump has grown – I look more pregnant and less full of Halloween candy.


We stopped at this awesome polish deli in Hamilton (Starpolski) to pick up really good kielbasa, crusty bread, and some eggs – Grammie was really surprised and thrilled (we called her the next day be we had forgotten our pierogies in her freezer and she had nearly polished off the kielbasa at that point and was thrilled to be able to eat he pierogi too). 

We visited for a good 4 hours with her – just let her talk away about pretty much anything. The hubby reset her bedroom ceiling fan too, because she can’t reach it and likes it to be on the lightest setting. Mum had unfortunately left it on hurricane mode on her last visit.

After visiting Grandma, we stopped at my parents place to catch up with them. I feel like it had been ages since I’d seen them – my little brother visited me at work on Friday (he is doing a nursing placement at the same hospital where I work) and I had seen my dad since thanksgiving after a doctor appointment one day in late October. Unfortunately I hadn’t had the chance to see my mum since turkey day and so I was quite pumped to snuggle with her… I use the term snuggle loosely – we sit together on the couch with their dog between us because he’s a mumma’s boy.

My mum had spent the earlier hours cleaning the house – all of her soaping supplies were away, which unfortunately meant no soaping adventure, but it did mean a delightfully delicious sit down meal! We had a pot roast (?? I think) with carrots, mashed potatoes, Brussels sprouts, and turnip. It was heavenly and oh so cozy. We even got a Tupperware with enough leftovers for our dinner on Sunday and it was just as spectacular.

Before and after dinner relaxation had the hubby playing some games & mum and I looking at baby items. We scoped out baby monitors, bassinets and the such like. Hubby and I even managed to settle on a monitor and added it to our Christmas list.We arrived home late and I went directly to bed, completely zonked from the day.

 Sunday had us lazing about hardcore for a good spot of the day, but we eventually made it out to Walmart for a few items (& stuff we didn’t need of course). I picked up a body pillow to help support my tummy and hips, spray and wash for the laundry, and some nasal strips to help beat the congestion I’ve developed from being preggers (so far they work well). We grabbed a few Christmassy items for decoration and a gift or two. The hubby spent the afternoon tidying more out I the garage and I did some more research on cloth diapers. 

All in all, a very stellar weekend spent being lazy and productive all at the same time.

Stay tuned for some crochet fun & a baby furniture update.

xo

Split Pea & Ham Soup

As per my last update (at thanksgiving), I mentioned making split pea and ham soup from my leftover ham bone. My mum often makes this soup after we’ve had a big ham dinner, and I have to say it’s one of the best cold weather soups out there. 

On Sunday early afternoon, we brought back a borrowed table to Kendra’s house and chatted a while. On our way home we picked up supplies for soup making:


Disregard the black pasta at the back… That’s for spooky Halloween party nonsense. Anyways, we’ve got 2 bags of split peas (yellow and green, I used about half of each) + onion, chicken brother, and celery. I also grabbed some nubbly looking carrots from the garden.

First things first, you’ve gotta simmer your ham bone: Just throw that sucker in a big stock pot with the broth and enough water to cover it. I let it simmer away for a few hours with the lid on so that the water wouldn’t evaporate. While that’s bubbling away, soak your split peas in some water to help get some of the startchiness outta the way. And then chop up the veggies (I did 4 celery stalks and almost the whole onion). 


After the ham is done simmering turn the heat to low and pull out the bone. Once cooled you want to pull off as much of the meat as you can. I decided that I wanted a bit more, so I chopped up some of the leftover ham from dinner and added that into the pot along with the veggies and the split peas (drained and rinsed).


I found the bones to be super cool. You could articulate the joint fairly well.

Give it a good stir once the veggies are all dumped in.ni added some salt and pepper, but completely forgot to add a bay leaf or two. Oh well, let it simmer and soon…


I like my split pea soup to be very thick. If you like a thinner soup, add more broth or water. I only added a half cup at the end.

Hope you enjoy!

xo

Thankful

Today is Thanksgiving Monday here in Canada and I’m super grateful for so many things in my life: my marvellous husband who takes such great care of me and let’s me rest when I need to, my fab parents for always being willing to help out, my siblings for their support and laughter, and to my in laws – my bonus family – for all of their love and happiness.

It has been another busy week, which isn’t much of an excuse for not posting more frequent updates here on the mellow beat, but all will be revealed soon enough!
The hubby and I offered to host thanksgiving dinner this year – it’s a big dinner, but with less pressure than say Christmas or Easter. Both families were happy to let us handle the gathering. Everyone was free on Saturday of the long weekend, so it was the perfect day to have everyone pile in for a mini feast. This way we still had Sunday and Momday free for clean up and relaxing, and our families could do thanksgiving with their other sides as well.

On Friday night after work, the hubby and I ran some errands. We were in need of a lawn mower (ours bit the bullet), a decent sized stock pot (for soup making), and milk; ice cream…and two matching fall table clothes. Once we got home I started making soup  the hubby chopped apart two butternut squash (squashes?), I chopped carrots and onion and tossed them into our previously never used roasting pan. The veggies roasted for THREE hours (I found this out later…the next day… Because I fell asleep). Thank goodness for amazing partners because that soup was fully complete when I woke up the next day. Also thank goodness for cold weather because our garage doubles as a fridge… 

Saturday morning we relaxed until 10am and then began the deep prep: glaze for the ham, chop and simmer the potatoes, bring the soup in to slowly warm up, vacuum & mop the main floor, rearrange the family room and dining room to make space for an extra table… And the hubby mowed the back lawn with our new mower.

Family started arriving around 415pm – my parents and little brother first (mum was quite impressed with our clever rearranging of the furniture), my sister and her husband arrived next, and lastly my two brother in laws, sister in law, and mother in law! We all piled in the chat and relax before dinner at 530. 

My sister brought cabbage salad, my parents brought turkey + stuffing + gravy + carrots and sauerkraut & kielbasa, my mother in law brought her delicious hamemade pumpkin pie (x2). We made a large glazed ham, garlic whipped potatoes, corn… And a surprise chocolate cherry birthday cake for my sister. I’m happy to say I made the cake and whipped cream frosting from scratch! And it was great. 

In the end, everyone was super happy and full of great food. I am SO glad we had a “wildly successful” event (as the hubby says). And we also have wild amounts of leftovers: ham, turkey, stuffing, etc. Because almost  everyone was celebrating again with different parts of the family on Sunday.

I have now had three rounds of leftovers (lunch and dinner on Sunday, lunch today). And successfully made an epic batch of split pea and ham soup… I’ll post about that later!

Check out some photos below of our cleaning frenzy & if you are interested in the squash soup recipe, Google “food wishes butternut squash soup ” (Chef John can do no wrong!).

Hope you have all had an amazing Thanksgiving Weekend if you’re in Canada…or just an awesome weekend if you’re anywhere else.

Some decorative gourds and corn from the grocery store.

Butternut squash soup a la chef John from food wishes.

Our smoked bone in ham complete with the first of many rounds of a maple Dijon glaze.

About to chop a bazillion potatoes.

My sisters birthday cake defrosting before being stacked with cherry pie filling and whipped cream.

The front hallway getting its tidy on.

Moving the table over so we can vacuum and mop the floors.

Tidied up the couch before it got shifted into the current dining room location.

I’ll grab a few photos from my hubby’s FB page to share on my next post. Til then,

xo

Ps: next post will be a breakdown of the split pea n ham soup!