27 July 2008

Berries, with Love

Put a bit of summertime happiness on a platter for some brunch guests today and couldn't help taking a picture of it.

26 July 2008

Cutting Pages

This type of activity is a little tougher to find online than
mazes or puzzles but I've managed to find a few.

Wondertime has a few nice scissor practice printables.

At Worksheets they customize a worksheet for you and you can download it as a pdf.

Scroll down to the bottom of A to Z's page to download a couple printables.

At Enchanted Learning they provide some simple line templates for printing or you could use them as a guide for making some yourself.

If you don't mind spending a little money on some good looking cutting pages, Kumon books are great.

Here's a video with tips on encouraging good cutting skills in your wee one.

25 July 2008

Fun with Felt Food

There are some talented folk out there making play food out of felt. These links are enough to send me to the storage to dig out my nana's sewing machine and get busy. Some of these are for sale. Some include DIY tutorials. Some sell templates and instructions. And some are simply inspirational.

Yummy breakfasts served here, here and here.

And some dim sum for lunch perhaps?

or here...

Some handsome renditions of sushi here, here, here and here.

Here's a crazy cute felt bento box.

Dinner is on with pasta with shrimp, pasta with sauce, lobster or pizza.

Could this smore be more adorable?

Fast food that's not so bad fer ya here and here.

And some stuff that's a feast for the eyes, here and here.

Two adorable takes on tacos here and here.


And finally time for dessert with cookies, doughnuts and more cookies and ice cream.

I'm stuffed.

18 July 2008

Bean Sprout Project

Spud's Nana likes to grow beans herself. And she was inspired by this little Chirp project. So, a couple of weeks ago, she brought over some of her 'magic' beans, put them in a wide mouth mason with several tissues [we didn't have paper towels] and spritzed them thoroughly.

Everyday since, Spud and I have generously spritzed them at least twice per day, except for our camping weekend when we were away but that did them no harm.

Here's their progress.

14 July 2008

Bentolicious III


This is one of my more monochromatic creations. According to Lunch in a Box the Japanese ideal number of colours is 5, which makes sense from a nutritional point of view. And an aesthetic one as well, really. But the designer in me likes to play with a simple palette sometimes too.

Clockwise from top left
Cheese triangles
Ham sandwich
Raspberry yogurt
Cherry tomatoes

Red pepper
Ketchup in the monkey
Goldfish crackers
Skewered weiners
Black grapes

Snap peas
Dried apricots + raisins
Grape tomatoes

Turkey sausage leftover from previous evening's barbeque
Mini dark chocolate chips
Tortilla chips
Chocolate heart cookies
Heart shaped mozza slices

Cherry Tomato Green bean salad [leftovers courtesy KR :) ]
Cottage cheese with mini banana spoon
Pineapple and peach pieces
Salad pocky sticks
Veggie Bootie [not necessarily healthy even though they are dusted with spinach and kelp powder]
Mini chocolate chips
Meatball [leftovers]

New Skewers
Anything on a Skewer
Bentolicious I
Bentolicious II

13 July 2008

Dutch Oven Meatloaf Stuffed Onions


6 – 8 onions, large
8 slices raw bacon

For the meatloaf [can be prepared ahead of time]
1 T. vegetable oil
1/2 - 1 C. onion, finely chopped
1 C. mushrooms, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 lb. ground beef
1/4 lb. ground pork
1/2 C. ketchup
1/4 C. barbecue sauce
1/2 C. walnuts, finely chopped
1 T. Dijon mustard
2 T. Worcestershire sauce
3/4 C. fresh breadcrumbs
1 egg, lightly beaten
S + P
1 bunch flat leaf parsley, chopped

Prepare meat mixture. I put all of the above ingredients in a jar at home, except for the meat and chopped onion which I added at the campsite.

Cut onions in half. Hollow them out, cutting up the insides to add to the meat mixture [up to 1 cup].

Fill each onion shell and place in Dutch oven making the first layer.

Place 4 strips of bacon on top and then repeat.

Bake with 8 briquettes below and 12 on top until onions are tender [45 – 60 minutes].

We served this with Foil Veggies and our friends added a crisp green bean and cherry tomato salad which was a welcome addition to the richness of the other dishes.

09 July 2008

Crustless Quiche Muffins

This easy and delish dish is courtesy of my bud Jessela. This is an easy after work type recipe with only a little chopping involved. I also like how flexible it is; it would be easy to substitute most any of the ingredients for what you happen to have in the fridge.

1 pkg frozen spinach, drained and chopped
6-8 eggs (make sure there is enough to hold all your ingredients together. Adjust to your preference of 'egginess')
1/2 red onion or 1 bunch green onion, chopped
Chopped ham, crumbled bacon or turkey smokie
1/2 tub feta
1 Red pepper, chopped
Handful mushrooms, chopped
S + P to taste [hot sauce or Mrs Dash type seasoning optional]
1 T. butter

Heat oven to 400°F. Sauté onion then add veggies and meat. Season. Sauté a little longer. Add to bowl of drained chopped spinach. Beat eggs with a splash of water then add to bowl. Add crumbled feta, mix well. Scoop mixture into greased tin cups. Cook for 30 minutes until done through.

So yummy. Although Spud has an aversion to spinach he gobbled up half of one serving which impressed me. Next time we'll try doing some of the batch without spinach for him. Perhaps leftover chopped asparagus would work too?

08 July 2008

Our Electric Scooter

Rising gas prices. Global warming. Carbon footprints. Living in an urban setting where driving is often no faster than walking. The electric scooter makes a lot of sense.

We paid our apartment management company a mere $25 last year to offset the amount of electricity we were using charging up our little scooter. This year, our city has passed a bylaw requiring all apartment buildings put a "free" electrical outlet in their bike rooms.

The mom in me goes a little crazy seeing my little Spud on the back of the scooter. Hubs assures me he's careful not to go too fast. Another great thing is that they are actually deemed to be a bike and therefore they ride on the bike paths, away from the busy streets. Spud loves the speed though, gripping tightly, "go faster daddy!".

05 July 2008

The Night Market


Injecting a little culture into a summer weekend evening with live entertainment, good food and cheap, interesting shopping.

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