Monthly Archives: August 2013

Happy 28th To My Amazing Husband!

Yesterday I was busy baking some of Hubby’s favourite vegan desserts in celebration of his birthday.

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Vegan Chocolate Chip Pancakes

1 cup whole-wheat flour
1 tbsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tbsp. sugar
3/4 cup almond or soymilk
2 tbsp. vegetable oil
1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Begin by whisking together all of the dry ingredients in a large bowl except the chocolate chips. Once these are well mixed you can add the oil and milk to the mixture and mix well. If the mixture seems a little too dough-like you can add small amounts of milk at a time to get the proper consistency. Finally add in the chocolate chips and mix well. You don’t want to use an electric mixer for this recipe, hand mixing is fine and will get you the proper texture you want.

Put a little vegetable oil in the bottom of a frying pan and heat for a minute on medium-high heat. Pour a small amount of batter in the pan and let it cook for a few minutes. Small bubbles should begin to form when the underneath side is finished. When this happens flip it over to cook the other side. Each pancake should only take minutes to make so make sure you don’t burn them! Repeat until all of the batter has been used, then serve with your favourite maple syrup!

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Mucho Burrito

I have to admit that it took me a long time to give vegan burritos a chance. Refried beans have always reminded me of cat food although I guess the meat alternative doesn’t look much better. My husband has always loved them so when a Mucho Burrito opened near us a couple of years ago he finally convinced me to check it out.
I was pleasantly surprised! I loved the atmosphere, which seemed like a mix between relaxed dining and fast food. The restaurant was also clean and welcoming and the staff were friendly. 
My husband and the employee working helped me choose my toppings to build my first burrito and I loved all of the flavours! Although this isn’t a place for vegan selection – you either want a burrito or you don’t – I was so stuffed that I felt completely satisfied after my meal! 
I enjoy the fact that when I’m hungry and want something quick, easy and delicious I can stop at Mucho Burrito and always be satisfied! 
You can check out Mucho Burrito here.
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Celebrating National Dog Day!

Today is National Dog Day so we’re celebrating the amazing dogs that have been such a huge part of our lives!

Our two Golden Retrievers Genevieve and Murray have certainly been a handful but have brought us so much joy over the past 5 years!

This golden duo is so entertaining there’s never a dull moment around here! Thank you Genevieve and Murray for being there through the good and the bad, loving us unconditionally along the way! 
I also don’t feel this post is complete without paying tribute to our miniature schnauzer, Maggie whom we had to say goodbye to this past Friday. 

Maggie we love and miss you so much! Thank you for being such a wonderful companion over the past 15 years. I am so glad that I got to share so much of my life with you! xox

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Coconut Curry With Tofu & Kale

Sometimes I disappoint myself with the concoctions I create. Other times I’m amazed! Luckily for my starving husband and I, this recipe was the later. In fact we couldn’t get enough!

1 tbsp. of vegetable oil
1 yellow onion diced
1/2 cup of diced extra firm tofu
1 can of kidney beans, drained
1 cup of finely chopped fresh kale
3 cloves of garlic
1 can of coconut milk
3 tbsp. of curry powder
1/2 tsp. of black pepper
2 cups of brown rice
1/4 tsp. of roasted red pepper flakes

In a pot cook the brown rice as per package directions. When the rice is about halfway through cooking begin prepping the rest of the meal. Dice the onion, tofu and kale. In a large saucepan heat the oil for a minute or two. When the oil is heated add the onion and garlic. Cook the onion until it begins to soften, usually a minute or two, then add the curry powder, red pepper flakes, tofu and kale. Cook until the kale has weakened, the tofu has browned slightly and the onion has turned an opaque colour. This took about 10 minutes. Now add the can of kidney beans, coconut milk and pepper. Stir well and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Adjust seasonings as necessary. We love flavour so I added more curry powder in at this point. By now the rice should be completed. Add it to the mixture, give it a good stir and cover, letting it simmer over low heat for about 15 minutes or until most of the coconut milk has been absorbed. Serve and enjoy!

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Mongolian Grill

The first time we ended up at Mongolian Grill was an accident. We had family visiting and our reservations at another restaurant got mixed up. We were starving and freezing cold (as it was the dead of winter) and trying to figure out another place to eat that would also have vegan options for Hubby and I. Being a Saturday night most places had long lineups or were booked solid with reservations but when we called Mongolian Grill they said they could seat our large party immediately.
What a unique experience! You build your meal in the dining area, top with the sauces and spices of your choosing, then stand around a large circular grill while the cooks prepare it for you! Since you are essentially building your own meal it’s easy to veganize. They have tons of great vegan options, some of which include various noodles, lots of veggies, tofu and different sauces and spices for flavour! They also provide a small salad bar.
Your food is cooked with everyone else’s on a large grill so we let the cooks know from the start that we were vegan. They immediately scraped and cleaned the grill for us and then sectioned off part of the grill with a separate pair of swords to ensure our food didn’t come in to contact with any meat.
Since then Hubby and I return every month or so to enjoy the delicious food! It’s the perfect place to eat before heading to a movie or to just wind down after a busy week! The cooks have always been more than accommodating and have never made us feel like we’re inconveniencing them with our requests. Our servers have always been very friendly as well! For all you can eat, Mongolian Grill’s pricing is more than fair and I loved the relaxed atmosphere – perfect for catching up with family or a date night out! 
You can check out their website here.
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There’s Always Tomorrow….

I’ve learnt a few things since leaving my job. One is that I am not a morning person. At all. Even when I wake up early I find I can’t get myself moving and often waste those early morning hours instead of taking advantage of the extra time I have.

The other is the struggle of finding time to get things done. Ironic isn’t it? I have more time than ever now that I stay at home and yet I can’t seem to get my list of chores completed! I’m opening a shop in a few short weeks on my other website but it’s been slow moving. I just can’t seem to find the time to do it all.

And somehow now the entire summer is almost behind me and I’ve been left to wonder where the time has gone? Time is a funny thing, that’s for sure! Last week I realized I needed to have a plan. I am the queen of list making around here although my husband says I’m always trying to pack way too many things in to my day.

Enter Playbook and Agenda. First I made a list of every household and pet chore I could think of. These could be as simple as watering the house plants or something extremely tedious like scrubbing the baseboards. Next I decided how often I should be completing that particular task. This is where my Playbook came in. I chose different days to perform each chore so that I wasn’t loading up all of my chores on the same day (which would make me less likely to do them). One of the great things about digital planners is that they have the ability to set reminders as well as repeat events. I am one of those people that tends to not notice something becoming a mess until it’s a full blown disaster so this has been a handy tool for me! Since we have so many pets I’d like to vacuum the carpets twice a week however, me being me, I tend to vacuum and then forget about it until I see little clumps of hair here and there! So I programmed ‘vacuum carpets’ in to my planner and then set it to repeat every 3 days. I set it to never end and voila! So easy!

Of course I couldn’t remember everything I do when I sat down to create this so as something came up that I knew I hadn’t logged in my calendar I would do the task, then sit down and add it while also setting my repeat times. You can choose to have your tasks repeat by days, weeks, months and years so it’s really easy to customize and I am finding it so helpful! Best of all its helped me stay on top of my housework and block off time to work on my growing business. It’s also helped me create a morning routine so I get myself up and moving and starting my day!

For anyone struggling with time management I highly suggest trying out the planner on your phone, tablet or even computer! It’s certainly paved the way towards a more productive me!

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It’s Black Cat Appreciation Day!

Today is Black Cat Appreciation Day! Black cats are often overlooked because of old superstitions which classify them as ‘bad luck’. 
Due to this many shelters and rescues have a large amount of gorgeous black kitties that are desperately in need of forever, loving homes! So if you’re looking to adopt, please consider a black cat! 
My childhood cat Harrison is one of the most amazing, loving cats around! Does this look like the face of an animal bringing nothing but bad luck your way?
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