Eating Game

Last night is the reason I will never become a full out vegetarian or vegan. Our friend Geoff came over and he brought moose steaks – yes, moose steaks. And shrimp. And scallops – that my husband bought bacon for. Did I mention the moose steaks? All that being said, when Sean told me how much protein we were eating, he added:

… and I’m assuming you’ll be making a salad because that probably sounded like a lot of protein to you.

Um, yes. My husband knows me well.

You’re might be wondering about where the moose steaks came from. Geoff just came back from working in Whitehorse in the Yukon, and while he was there, he and his friend went hunting for game. And they (responsibly (in terms of not wasting the full animal), bravely (moose are way bigger than we are), perhaps stupidly (again, moose are way bigger than we are)? – depends on your perspective on a variety things) hunted moose. And Geoff’s freezer is now full of moose meat that he was lovely enough to share with us.

I got home and saw the plate piled with not even cooked yet, but beautifully seasoned meat and, I kid you not, my mouth started to water. I was pretty surprised at myself, but I’m the universal blood type and apparently I need protein.

Sean saut√©ed his infamous mushrooms at the stove and then smoked some fresh rosemary on the grill before grilling the steak. The patio smelled wonderful. Almost more wonderful than the shrimp and (bacon wrapped!) scallop skewers that Sean grilled pre-steaks. That he made garlic butter to dip said skewer pieces in. Oh. My. Gosh. And then Geoff made margaritas from a mix he brought called Skinny Girl. (Bethenny Frankel has gone into drink mixes – it’s pretty good. I make awesome margaritas from scratch but I would buy this stuff in a pinch.)

Thank goodness for the salad or my food conscience would have nagged me all bloody (moose steak!) night long- my body might crave protein, but as I’ve paid even more attention to what I fuel my body with in the last year, I’ve found that it also craves veggies. A lot. My favourite vegetable of late is kale, and if I do say so myself, I make a mean kale salad: fresh kale, cucumber, red bell pepper, dried cranberries, goat cheese (yum!), and light balsamic dressing. I forgot to open the can of chickpeas, we really didn’t need anymore protein. At all.

So yes, I had my veggies but I LOVED my moose steak. (Like deer meat, which I have also tried, it’s very lean and tender. Not gamey at all.) That (and the bacon, and the garlic butter; and the fact that all my leather shoes and purses would make me an incredible hypocrite) is why I could never be a full out vegetarian or vegan. I admire those that are, and firmly believe in eating as healthy as possible (fruits and veggies y’all!). But every now and then, it’s nice to eat game. ūüėČ

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Comfy cozy cookies

Fall is here and with it comes the chillier weather and the inevitable rain. When I have to pull out a light wool coat or start wearing boots, I know summer is officially gone. But autumn is my favourite seasons because of the clothing required. Knee-high boots. Jeans. Turtlenecks. Tights or leggings. Knee-length skirts. I’m all about being comfortable and cozy, so aside from the rain, I’m in heaven when fall comes. Monday was the first cold, rainy day of the season and there was no other option but to wear my favourite Mexx sweater, leggings, and one of my favourite pairs of knee-highs. One of my co-workers remarked that I looked very fall-like. Like I said, there was no other option.

When it was hot out, I didn’t really have any desire to bake – an oven makes any kitchen unbearbale in the summer. Unless I baked at 11pm. But now that the heat from the oven will be more tolerable, even welcome, I’m armed and ready with favourite recipes and those I want to try. And so the Alternative Baking Chronicles continue. ūüôā

While my focus is primarily on baking healthy baked goods, this cookie would maybe get a 2.5 on the healthy scale. The recipe calls for shortening (read: lard) and butter, guess what? That’s what makes them taste good. They, like my beloved Mexx sweater, are a comfy, cozy part of life. They make you feel good to eat one. (Even when the roof of someone’s mouth almost burns because they won’t wait 5 minutes for cookies to cool down – you know who you are and I adore you all anyway despite and because of your cookie snatching skills.) The key thing is that there is a healthy sugar alternative: honey (as opposed to granulated sugar).

Honey has become a staple in my baking since I wanted to make oatmeal cookies a couple years ago and I didn’t have any brown sugar. Off to Google I went and found the below – absolute favourite – recipe. Tried and true – when I make these cookies, they disappear pretty quickly. And they always turn out fab. (Except when I gave the recipe to one our friends because he wanted to make them. The next time I saw him, he reported that they did not turn out well and what do I do that makes them so wonderful. My cheeky response was that I make my cookies with love, to which he responded “maybe that was my problem…” – I guess he wasn’t in a good mood when he made them or was distracted and missed something. I hope he tries again. Everyone deserves good oatmeal cookies!)

OATMEAL HONEY CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES

  • Servings: Approx. 5 dozen small cookies
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups flour – all purpose is best but try using spelt or kamut flour as an alternative (makes for even more delicous, melt in your mouth cookies!)
  • 1 cup quick-cooking rolled oats
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

METHOD:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, cream honey, shortening and butter in with a mixer until smooth.
  3. Beat in eggs, one at a time, and add vanilla. Mix well. (For extra fluffy cookies, mix for at least two minutes.)
  4. In a separate, smaller bowl, combine flour, oats, baking powder, soda and salt; whisk to mix well.
  5. Add flour mixture to honey mixture; mix thoroughly.
  6. Stir in chocolate chips and (optional) nuts.
  7. Use an ice cream scoop, cookie dough scoop, or large spoon to drop by the heaping teaspoonful onto greased baking sheet.
  8. Bake at 350 degrees F for 12 to 16 minutes or until lightly browned. Repeat for however many trays of cookies.

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And on Sunday, I rested + Healthy Protein Power Muffins

It is Day 9 of Cleanse Lite (CL) and in theory, I should be on Day 2 of three days of nothing but vegetables and maybe some white fish. But you know what? It’s Sunday (and isn’t that the day of rest? I say this with absolutely no disrespect, but if God took¬†a break…) And the French toast I had brunch with Sean¬†and some friends¬†was spectacular. (The fact that Sean was at brunch on a Sunday is the result of a very rare couple of weeks off. (I think they miss¬†him at the theatre, but he’ll be back soon, I promise!)

We walked to the Quay – long but nice walk – had iced tea the Great Wall tea Co., bought some wine at my new favourite wine shop, did some grocery shopping at the market… Nice normal things that I do all the time on my own. So nice to share that with my guy today.

As I had previously mentioned, I’m being nice to myself on CL. On Tuesday, we went out for dinner at one of my favourite places, Joey Burrard, and I had my Ahi Tuna Club. Cleanse calls for white fish but I had my tuna, and I had it without the bun and with no bacon. ¬†I also had a glass of red wine and poked at the chocolate sauce on Sean’s dessert. (Extreme will power was demonstrated considering that chocolate lava cake is a personal weakness.) We went to Earls on Friday and I had goat cheese on my salad (which as I have discovered doesn’t¬†really¬†count as dairy) and a glass of wine. But then I had a small hot fudge Sunday and that was definitely a cheat. (Gasp!) I suppose CL has turned into Yasmine Eating Even More Healthy Than Normal But With Treats Allowed at Dinner, but it’s been a good exercise in discipline for my breakfasts and lunches.

This has made me think of a food writer named¬†Mark Bittman,¬†¬†who I first learned about a while back while watching a show called¬†“Spain: On the Road Again”¬†. When I read his bio, the thing that stuck out the most was that he considered himself vegan until 6:00 pm. I am going to go buy one of his books called¬†Food Matters¬†tomorrow. There is also a cookbook – because I really need another one. Really, I do. We are going to need another bookshelf soon… ūüėČ To be totally honest with you, I have no interest, whatsoever, in being a full-on vegan. I admire people that are, but I really like grilled chicken and I love me a good omelette or beef burger every now and then. (There’s also the fact that I don’t think I could give up my my leather jacket¬†or any of my lovely leather purses and shoes.)¬†But that doesn’t mean I can’t make the effort to find out where my food comes from try to only eat organic and fairly traded/treated products. At the end of the day, I just want to be a conscious eater and have a healthy body without depriving myself.

It’s been pretty funny to be in the kitchen at work and having people come peek while I am chopping vegetables for my salad and asking me questions about quinoa. People are so in awe of healthy eating – I’ve never been UN-healthy, but since January, I have noticed a difference in how I digest and feel when I eat a certain way. It takes a lot of prep, which is probably what makes some shy away. I went to a movie matinee with my friend Liss yesterday afternoon (we saw “The Help” – awesome movie based on an even more awesome book – see it/read it. It was painful to close whenever I had to get off the train. Best book I have read in a while.) and there was me with a healthy¬†protein muffin, a container of snap peas, chopped celery and cucumber, and a baggie of these great multi-grain chips from a company called¬†Food Should Taste Good.

Not going to lie, in that moment, I much rather would have had some of Liss’ popcorn, but I was good and I ate what my friend Alison would call my hippie food. I should mention that Liss is also a very healthy eater who believes in treating herself. We will be recipe exchanging soon because she has some fab recipes. In the world of the Alternative Baking Chronicles, I found and tweaked a recipe for the about the above mentioned protein muffins during the NHL playoffs that make a great breakfast muffin or afternoon snack. The original recipe was not totally cleanse friendly, so it became the below in several variations.

HEALTHY PROTEIN POWER MUFFINS

  • Servings: 12 regular or 6 jumbo muffins
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose spelt or Kamut¬ģ¬†flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup oat bran
  • 3 tbsp ground flax seed meal
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 1/3 cups unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries (or¬†raspberries; or 1/2 cup chocolate chips, 1/4 cup walnuts, and 1/4 dried cherries (my favourite!); or really whatever you like)¬†

METHOD:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly grease a muffin tin or fill tin with paper muffin liners.
  2. Whisk together flour, baking powder and baking soda, cinnamon, and salt in a large bowl. Mix in bran and flax.
  3. Whisk almond milk, olive oil, honey and vanilla in another bowl. Mix in quinoa. Add to dry ingredients and mix together with a wooden spoon until just mixed. Fold in blueberries (or desired substitute).
  4. Divide batter into muffin tin (it will fill them right up). Bake for 25-28 mins. Tops of muffins should be slightly cracked and will bounce back when lightly pressed.

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On a totally unrelated subject, we have finally started using some of our wedding presents and one of my favourites has been the Trudeau Olive Oil and Vinegar Dispensers that I got at my bridal shower. I’m¬†done typing for the day (lazy, I know), so the picture will just have to be self-explanatory about how it works, but one of the best kitchen things ever. Julie – I’m still in awe that you remembered that random conversation and gave me that gift. Thank you! ūüôā

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What are you, an app?

Claire and I were talking a while back about how tired we were. Part of that is because we’re all so busy and the other part is when you’re busy, even if you try to eat as healthy as possible, sometimes it’s just easier to eat quick things that at are, at the end of the day, not always the best for our bodies. For example – cheese, bread; basically: pizza. I LOVE pizza. So when Claire mentioned she was thinking of doing the cleanse again, I said I would join her. The differences between January and this round are: 1) I know what I’m doing now – recipes and ideas abound; and 2) I am not going super hard-core. Green tea (caffeinated, I don’t care!) and yogurt are allowed, and if I want corn on the cob (a cleanse no-no), I’m going to have it. So I am calling this ‘Cleanse Lite’ and I started on Saturday. I was talking to our IT guy this morning and when I told him about ‘Cleanse Lite’, he says to me “What are you, an app?” – I looked at him for a beat and then nearly fell off my chair laughing. Quote of the day. You had to be there, but it was pretty darn funny.

Sean isn’t participating this time; except when he’s at home. So when he came home last night, the idea was that we were having vegan macaroni and cheese. All I’m going to say is that I am never, EVER making it again. At least not from the recipe I had found – which I will obviously not be sharing. But me telling Sean that I ran out of soy cheese and had to add real cheese to supplement my roux to make it not soupy did not get the reaction I had expected. Instead of “Oh well, let’s eat”, I got “What’s the point in doing the cleanse if you’re going to cheat and do it halfway?” To which I repsonded: “Do you want runny macaroni and cheese?” Apparently, his expectations of my being on cleanse (even ‘Cleanse Lite’ – now to be known as CL) are that some things won’t turn out perfect or taste super good, so in light of that we were meant to suck it up and have runny macaroni and cheese. I’m sorry, but I have standards and my roux was NOT going to be liquid. It had to be salvaged. But he was willing to accept sub-par macaroni, because that was his way of being supportive. Awww. Anyhow, even after baking the macaroni, it did not turn out as promised and neither of us finished our plates. It’s the first time I’ve ever thrown out something I’ve made other than a past saving pie crust. Not even going to think about the cost of the soy cheese. On the up side, my sauteed mushrooms were fantastic.

Day 3 of CL was not a full loss, though. I found a lovely recipe for zucchini bread from the KAMUT¬ģ website. It has pears in it. I never would have though to mix pears and zucchini together. As I tend to do, I revised the recipe a bit to my liking and to make it cleanse friendly. I brought a loaf to work today and everyone was surprised that a healthy dessert was so tasty. ūüėČ When I finally got around to trying some, I loved it too, so that’s a bonus. I forgot to take a picture, but here is the recipe:

PEAR ZUCCHINI BREAD

Ingredients:

2 Cups Chopped Pealed Pears
1 Cup Shredded Zucchini
1 Cup Honey
3 Eggs Beaten or 3 Tablespoons of Ground Flax Seed Meal mixed with 9 Tablespoons of tepid water (whisk together and leave to sit for 5 minutes before adding to wet ingredients)
1/2 Cup Olive Oil
1/2 Cup Unsweetened Applesauce
1 Tablespoon Pure Vanilla Extract
3 Cups KAMUT¬ģ Khorasan Flour
2 Teaspoon Cinnamon
1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
1/2 Teaspoon Baking Powder
1/2 Teaspoon Sea Salt
1/2 Cup Chopped Walnuts

Preparation:

Mix together the pears, zucchini, honey, eggs/flax seed meal mix, oil, applesauce, and vanilla. Combine dry ingredients and stir into the pear mixture. Gently stir in walnuts. Pour into 2 greased loaf pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 55 minutes. Cool in pans for 10 minutes and flip out the loaves onto a cloth covered baking rack. Cover with cloth.

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The vegan macaroni debacle made me realize that some things are not meant to be messed with. Macaorni and cheese is one of them. I make awesome non-CL friendly mac and cheese and I will just have to wait another 10 days before I make it again. But that doesn’t mean other things can’t be tweaked. And so the Alternitive Baking (and Sometimes Cooking) Chronicles begin with a clean slate.

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NKOTBSB!

I have been revisiting my youth a bit these last few months. I started dance classes again and I’ve gotten back into doing wardrobe calls. I haven’t done wardrobe ¬†in years, but it’s good money and I get to play with fun clothes. The day after watching Rihanna (no, I didn’t buy the tickets), I ended up steaming that show’s costumes. And on Canada Day, I made lots of stat pay steaming Britney Spears costumes and standing under the stage dealing with sweaty male dancer costumes. Having worked in hockey, I can safely say that dancers smell MUCH better than hockey players. But back to revisiting my youth.

Last night was one of the best and funnest nights ever. Why? One word (or maybe seven?): NKOTBSB. I know – horrible. But I am so not ashamed to say that I had t

he best time at Rogers Arena with my girlfriends, watching the boy bands of our youth. I was too young to really absorb the whole New Kids craze (but I think I still have the tapessomewhere!)  but I was in high school during the Backstreet Boys hey day Рand I loved them. So this concert was going to be more about BSB (despite a lack of Kevin Richardson, who was my favourite) than NKOTB for me. And in Section 105, Row 5, Seat 101, life was going to be good no matter what.

Needless to say,¬†I enjoyed both equally but I have to admit, those New Kids almost tipped the scale. Donnie Wahlberg and Joey McIntyre rocked my world last night. I really like Donnie as an actor – if you haven’t
seen “Blue Bloods” on CBS or CTV, you need to watch it; Tom Selleck is also in it for an added bonus – but wow. At one point they were all in the crowd and he was four rows away from us. That’s REALLY close. Did we keep our cool? Not a chance. We all freaked out. It was great. lol. And I had forgotten that “Cover Girl” was his song. So there he is singing, and then he rips his shirt off. (I apologize that my video does not capture that. I had to put my iPhone down so I could jump up and down and sing.) Everyone went nuts. We’ll just say he’s in good shape. They all are.

“Young” Joey McIntyre has beautiful blue eyes (just like my hubby) and is also lovely to look at and in great shape (just like my hubby), but (unlike my hubby), dude can SING. At one point they stopped and told him to¬†sing a song and he starts “O Canada”.¬†Predictably, all 18000+ of us (age range 8 to 45) joined in and he finished it out. There is a reason he was on Broadway playing Fiyero in “Wicked”. He sang our anthem like he was Jean Valjean singing a showstopper in “Les Miserables”. I was impressed.

(On the subject of people who¬†cannot¬†sing. Alison and I were at Rhianna a couple weeks ago, and who happens to be sitting behind us but Canuck Christian Ehrhoff (who became a Buffalo Sabre shortly after) and his girlfriend. People were asking for his autograph and he looked familiar but we couldn’t figure out who he was. So I asked. And then everything made sense and I think he must have appreciated our saying hi but not wanting autographs or photos. The guy was harangued for about 20 minutes before the show started. Anyway, during a lull in his autograph line-up, Journey comes on through the speakers. Ali and I of course start to sing along, but who joins us but the German hockey player. Christian Ehrhoff is tone deaf but he know every word to “Don’t Stop Believing” – it was thehighlight of my night. ūüôā )

Jordan Knight is nice to look at but I’m indifferent to him and his falsetto. His brother Jonathan was pretty quiet when not singing and Danny Wood was never really on my radar. In BSB land, Nick Carter has grown up in spades, Howie is still adorable, A.J. has more tattoos and can still sing like no tomorrow, and Brian is just as sweet and goofy. When they all sang “Get Down”, the place went nuts. Talk about vintage. They performed all the songs we wanted to hear, but when “I Want That Way” started I wished Kevin would magically appear like he did in L.A. earlier in the month. He was the only thing missing from an otherwise perfect concert.

They did mash-ups of their songs and included some covers, and during the intros they showed us how goofy they are and how much they actually like each other. It was nice to see.

Matthew Morrison, otherwise know as Mr. Shu from “Glee”, was the opening act and there’s another good looking man who can sing very well. He had a great band, awesome back-up singers, and a pretty fantastic set list. He came on in a tux and ended up with his shirt sleeves rolled up. Nice and basic. When he did “Gold Digger”, the arena¬†went insane.

I had the opportunity for tickets for tonight’s show but I’m glad that I didn’t take them because yesterday was great fun and I don’t think any of our phones/cameras would last through another night of photos, videos, and singing. Between Kate, Alison, and I, the entire concert was documented. Dawn was probably the smartest of all of us just watched, but how can we not record a fabulous night of good looking guys singing bouncy pop songs? ūüėČ

We danced, we sang, we screamed – and about a third of the way through, I actually took out my ear plugs just to test the waters. And for this concert it actually made it even better. Go figure. And now Sean gets to deal with me going “oh-ohoh, oh-ohoh” and “Backstreet’s Back, alright!” for at least two days.

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Daddy’s Little Girl

Today is Father’s Day and I am very proud to say that I am a “Daddy’s Girl”. I know my Dad has his faults – they all do, it’s a kid/parent thing; and when I was a teenager, we didn’t get along that well. Part of that was natural because of the age and partly due to my parents splitting up, but once we got through all of that and we both grew up, we got along just fine now. ūüôā I think we understand each other better as adults.

I remember walking in the park with my Dad every weekend and him pushing me on the swings; and carrying me on his shoulders. He is 6’+ so that’s way up there – I LOVED it. And when I got bigger, he started taking me to museums and on trips. A while back, I wrote about my Dance Mom’s car and the mileage she had on it. My Dad’s car comes a close second in that category. He has pretty much driven me everywhere (dance lessons, etc) and whenever I needed a ride, he was always there. If he initially couldn’t come and get me, I would say that’s okay, I’ll take the bus, or whatever. I’ve been taking the bus since I was eight years old, so this is not a big deal. Well, that certainly would not do for him. Particularly if it was at night. Some of my best conversations with my Dad were in that light gray Mercury Topaz and then in his sporty little blue Mazda. (I remember being at Roosters one night and we had to go see family the next day, so my Dad said he would come get me. So there I am on the dance floor, phone in hand so I could feel it vibrate when he called, and the damn thing isn’t ringing at the time he told me to make sure to be ready. I try calling him, and no answer. As it turns out, the cell reception in Roosters is not the best and Daddy did try to call. But to get me, he had to go up to the bouncer, give his ID and come in to grab me. I feel this tap on my shoulder while I am telling my friends that it’s so weird he hasn’t called – I turn around and he looked so steamed. It was pretty funny. He realized it was bad cell coverage that was to blame and also thought it was funnyafter but he was gearing for a lecture until that point.)

He can be a bit uppity, but that is because he is about “quality, not quantity” – Lord know how many times that was drilled into me. But I guess that’s why I have nice things and take care of them. Daddy is a bit of a wino and a foodie – he makes the best omelettes, EVER. Daddy hosts a dinner party every year – the menu for said party is planned at least a month in advance, gets printed out for everyone to have, and always includes such lovely food and wine pairings. The day I started to like wine was a good day for my dad because it was something for us to have in common.

My Dad is a good man. He isn’t very open with his emotions – I guess most men aren’t – but I have always felt very loved. (And spoiled. I was a lucky girl. I still am.) Dancing with my Dad at my wedding was a huge highlight for me. He is an awesome dancer and it was one of the precious times he told me he was proud of me.

Now if only I could make him stop him from bringing up grand-babies every time Sean and I are over for dinner… ūüėČ

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Cardboard, Cabernet and 2OT – welcome back Clarence Campbell!

I have to say, I’m really glad I’ve been cozily ensconced in our cardboard box filled apartment all night. Only I had to¬†experience me up to my ears in cardboard and bins, packing away our possessions – we have SO MUCH glassware ¬†and books – in prep for our move on Saturday (while my husband works follow spot at the game, no less, but that’s okay, he was feeling the stress too, up in his perch!) – constantly craning my neck to see the TV and finally ending up on the couch breathing in and out through my nose, attempting a calming Ujjayi breath¬†during 2OT. Thank goodness for the distraction of packing (never thought I would say that), a nice, big glass of red and a really, really good thin crust pizza from Panago.

Kevin Bieksa, thank you for allowing my blood pressure to finally lower. You are my hero for sending us to the FINAL and for preventing a slew of emails tomorrow morning asking if I can move a Thursday work movie screening of the new “Pirates” movie (that was booked over a month ago) because the now moot Game 6 is happening in San Jose. THANK YOU. Clarence Campbell is now back in Vancouver and now perhaps, perhaps… I can’t even type or think it. All I can say is that I BELIEVE. I feel it in my bones – it’s our year.

Random trivia: Did you know Steve Nash’s sister is married to Manny Malhotra? Go figure. Manny’s appearance on the bench post-win almost put me in tear shedding mode – as if I wasn’t already close to that.

Some people are shocked
when they learn that I LOVE hockey; never mind the fact that I worked for a hockey team (already a shock to some, since I was mostly known as a dancer/girly girl) – and have a Memorial Cup ring to show for it, no less. I’m still a girly-girl, but I love hockey. I remember, a few years ago, sitting in an arena box at what is now called Rogers Arena, with the guy I was dating at the time and with some work people. They knew I did game day stuff at the Coliseum, but they certainly didn’t expect me to yell “Shoot the fricking puck!!!” at the top of my lungs, down at the Sedins. (I have issues with unnecessary passing that I will not get into right now.) ¬†I hollered that at least once this evening. The neighbours didn’t mind, they were louder than me. ūüėČ

By the time the Finals start, we will be settled in the new apartment and I will be experimenting with some game-day recipes. (Hello, big kitchen!!) I don’t know how to express how done I am with boxes and how exited I am about the Canucks getting into the Finals. There are no words

As I calm down form that post-game high, I sit here watching the PVR – something on a different end of the spectrum: “Dancing with the Stars” – Kirstie Alley has been my favourite so far, but I think Hines Ward is going to take it. Those American footballers have some rhythm. And he’s just so darn adorable.

Limes were going to be the topic of my next post, but the weather has not lived up to that expectation. When the temperature finally hits margarita worthiness, lime recipes will appear. I made a kick-butt key lime pie the other day.

Night all. We’re going to the Finals!!!!!!!!! (The house is in chaos, but we won the game!!)

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The Second Mom

I have a fabulous Mom – sometimes she frustrates me to no end, but that’s part of her job, and I love her so much. I also have a great Mother-in-Law and Step-Mom; lovely official and unofficial Godmothers; and¬†a couple¬†all important Second Moms. All of whom are fabulous mothers in their own right and I am very¬†happy to have them in my life.


Being a single parent, my Mom worked her butt off so I could have ballet lessons, pointe shoes, piano lessons, musical theatre, food, and so she could be there for me – you know, she gave me the world as I needed/wanted it to be. I really don’t know how she did it and stayed sane. But I guess that’s what do for your kids, and I appreciate her beyond words. Je t’aime, Maman!!¬†

We didn’t have a car and that’s where one particular Second Mom is sincerely appreciated (and not just for the car). She is my Ballet Mom. Being a sales rep at the time, her car was well travelled to start. And then, when I was in high school, she drove me and her daughters to competitions, rehearsals, and recitals galore. That car had some serious mileage on it. She recently retired that car (navy blue, 80’s model, car brand and name escapes me but I want to say a Hyundai Sonata or a Toyota of some sort), and when I heard that, I was inexplicably saddened. I know, it’s a car. But it was a good car and I spent a lot of time in it.

Ballet Mom is also the person who taught me to make biscotti (which I have yet to master – and I’ve tried) and welcomed me into her home so often that it was pretty much my second home for a few years. I used to dance with her daughters, and they are each a few years younger than me. My relationship with Ballet Mom started when she asked me to “keep company with” (clear distinction from babysitting) the youngest every Wednesday. Ballet Mom was huge into swing dancing at the time and the older daughter had her own thing going on. The youngest wasn’t keen on staying home by herself but was very definitely not in need of a babysitter – I think she was 11 or 12 at the time.

When I graduated highschool, Ballet Mom and I became friends and she is one of the COOLEST ladies you will ever meet.¬†Over the years she¬†has¬†provided great impartial guidance and support and one thing – among many –¬†I really admire her for is not only changing careers, but making¬†it work (she is now a successful caterer and private chef). She recently gave me a couple cooking lessons as a birthday present, and those lessons revived my interest in cooking.¬†(Not to take away from my Mom,¬†she taught me a lot –¬†but did I¬†retain the fancy things from her? No, of course not (that wasn’t my interest when¬†I was 16)¬†– which is a shame. That being said, my Mom is the reason I didnt’t starve when I first moved out on my own. ūüėČ )

I am very grateful for my Ballet Mom, a Second Mom Рkind, patient, impartial, candid, and ever gracious Рto me and a fantastic mom to her daughters.

Happy Mother’s Day!

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