Category Archives: Fine Dining

Mixed Blessings

You know how your day can start out as one thing and end up as something else?  How things can change on a dime?  Or is the phrase, turn on a dime?  What does a dime have to do with change, blessings, or mixed anything?

Before I tell you about today I have to talk about yesterday. I mean they are connected although today’s events can stand alone.  But, yesterday morning I attended my nephew’s wedding.  It was held in an old heritage church and followed by a catered picnic luncheon for about a hundred people.  Perfect size for the church and the celebration. Perfect combination of tradition and casual. It has to be the most delightful wedding I have ever attended (or hosted).  The weather cooperated and those two hardworking  deserving people, now man and wife, who have earned every moment of happiness are off on a wonderful honeymoon.

Doon Village Heritage church

The word ‘quaint’ comes to mind and reminds me of comfort, simplicity and hard work.  The entire village is a working village as things were in 1914 with a fire hall, blacksmith, and shops.  The grounds, green and lush, made me think of weddings of long ago, before the invention of glitter and glam.  A Piper piped the guests into the church and out again.  The groom and his best man wore kilts.  There was absolutely everything. Minus the modern attire it very well could have been a wedding from a hundred years ago.

Then that same evening, following the festivities I traveled to a nearby town where I attended yet another feast to celebrate our 48th nursing anniversary. We graduated in 1969 but went into residence in 1966.  In those days nursing students lived at the hospitals.  It was an incredibly intense education and applied labor.  And of course the system no longer exists having gone the way of the dinosaur.  Education by immersion.

Oh yeah, the dinner –napagrilleandwineden2

Now how can you go wrong dining at a Wine Den.  We had a separate section that gave us plenty of time to circulate and chat for a lovely few hours.

Now-a-days we all live within a few hours of each other, but over the years there were travels to the states, Calcutta, and New Zealand and heaven only knows were else.

Well all  this chatter is about my blessings in the last 24. Nothing ‘mixed’ about them yet.

This morning I awoke thinking I would spend the whole day writing.  In a serious fashion, you understand.  That means closing the door, taking the computer off the internet to avoid temptation, putting my phone in another room, and hunkering down for the duration.  I imagined my great joy and well earned weariness by the end of the day.  I quickly rose excited about the day ahead.

Darn.  Then I remembered I had to go to the pharmacy and pick up a prescription. Perfect.  Do it early before crowds start crowding.  Off I went. Wonderful expedient success and the most cheerful pharmacist I have ever met.  Here she is on a Sunday morning away from her husband and young family, at work.  And happy!  She cheered everyone up and told me, ‘I love my job and people’.  And it showed.

So very cheerily and medication in hand I thought, well before I go home I should just pop into the grocery store next door.  I have to tell you, I LOVE CHILI or chili con carne as they used to call it.  I put lots of vegetables for nutrition with a pork/beef combination and make it very spicy.  (You can imagine not everyone loves my chili but what counts is that I do.)  And I make enough for about 12 meals which I freeze.  I could eat it every day.  Okay I do eat it every day.  That’s just how I am.

So I shop, because this is Autumn (chili season), even though the temp today is going to be 27C or 80.6 degrees F.  I choose to ignore that.

Beef, pork, onion, green pepper, celery, kidney beans, tomato paste and sauce and lots of spice.  Well when I get home I can’t start to write yet. I find myself chopping, cooking, mixing.

Even though my plans changed I still counted the day as one big blessing.

Then: my stirring spoon slipped in the pot and my good yellow top was covered in sauce. ( Don’t even ask why I would not have changed.  The fact is the weekend had gone so well I thought I could cook all dressed up.) I ran to the bathroom sink to immediately rinse out my top, threw on one I should have been wearing, and returned to the kitchen. my stir spoon with a plastic handle had fallen to the stove top and I snapped it up only to discover it was on a hot part of the burner and I ended up holding a hot spoon with melted hot plastic in my palm.  Which I dropped immediately making even more of a mess.

I cleaned up my hand, applied some Flamazine which helped, but I still have blisters on my palm (no I will not show a photo.)

So a top I hope can be saved, as yellow is my favorite color, and multiple burns, but the chili is done, in containers with some in the fridge and some in the freezer, and no I have not started writing yet.

Mixed Blessings but all in all an excellent weekend.

 

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American Thanksgiving From the Outside

I am not an American however I do have strong links which include having resided in Texas for a time, good personal friends, and of course about 60% of my blogging  commentors.  I have said more than once that I left a part of my heart in that wonderful state and it is true.  Geographically you are our nearest neighbors, but the heart of America is more than friends or readers or one state.  The whole world is going through some rough times and certainly the USA as much or even more than some.

American Thanksgiving is a pretty big holiday with the very source of it being about Thanks for all we have and all we have is not something that can be counted or displayed.  Sometimes it is enough to give thanks for just being.

I met some pretty fantastic people from the other side of the border who went out of their way to make my life richer, and some who still do today.

The heart of America resides all around the world in every country.  For all the grumblings and stereotyping and political and religious hoohaw and seeming discontent there is strength, dignity and compassion.  There are many without food, homes, or love in all our countries.  Lets remember them – and for all who whine about what they don’t have, please give thanks for what you do have no matter how small or meagre.

This is a day that Americans traditionally celebrate and give thanks.  Just to let you know there are others like myself that give special thanks today just for knowing you.

The First Thanksgiving, painted by Jean Leon G...
The First Thanksgiving, painted by Jean Leon Gerome Ferris (1863–1930). The First Thanksgiving took place in Plymouth in 1621. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

The Life of Jamie requires assistance

http://thelifeofjamie.wordpress.com/2012/01/28/the-dinner-blood-pressure-rise/

My poor frustrated blogging pal Jaime is facing a certain brick wall and has posted a plea on her site above. It seems her wee ones have limited culinary tastes and regardless of attempts to make said meals delightful and intriguing and fun, they refuse to play the game. Now I know she will get some great advice, but having from current young parents but I do have a couple of suggestions compliments of my currant experience as Granny Nanny, Queen of Hamilton.
We are pretty lucky with G1 as he is eight, in a growth spurt with a matching appetite, There are several things he won’t eat but is becoming more adventurous in trying new things. Breakfast is probably the worst meal of the day for him.
G2 on the other hand sounds much like what you are experiencing.

Suggestions:
Throwing them in the oven is a no no and has been ever since that wicked witch tried to lure Hansel and Gretal into her pot. Society frowned. Sorry kid.

I have found lunch more successful with G2 when we sit quietly at the table with only the plate in front of him. I only put out the milk after he has eaten a significant amount. He always asks for dessert but he must meet a certain standard and alas dessert is not always attained.

I don’t send him to his room as he is a grandchild, but I will say there is nothing further til dinner. When my sons were that age they were excused from the table but not sent to their rooms. This way they had a view to the rest of us enjoying our food. I don’t think I would remove their toys as then it becomes a punishment rather than a matter of choice and really once they get hungry it sure makes them appreciate the next meal. Although I could be wrong on this or on any bits I offer.

For G1’s breakfast as he honestly doesn’t seem to have much of an appetite I make a smoothie that includes a whole banana, milk and fruit, blueberries, or mixed berries or melons. I also add a small amount of ice cream. But it means he gets something nutritious.

I don’t know if this is of any help but am sure you will receive many other words of wisdom.  So if  y’all have some advice please head off to let her know.

It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Chris…Chris..Chris

 

It’s Beginning To LookA Lot Like Chris…Chris..Chris


So here’s the scoop..after a tiring week by all, as all weeks should be, in anticipation of a smashing weekend full of festivity and shopping I made my way back to Kitchener on Friday…early on Friday arriving at oneish.  Lunch with my best friends sis and sis in law, chatting the afternoon away then out to Kelsey’s for fish and chips dinner.  I categorically do not like fish and chips but theirs is wonderful.
Home post dinner for a short restful evening, a good nights sleep then a day of shopping, visiting, topped off by our annual brothers and sisters Christmas dinner
Suddenly at 9pm I felt the need to call dear old auntie Fran to set up lunch with her.  After many rings a clearly incoherent elderly woman answers.  I abandon my glass of Pinot Grigio, sis drops her glass of rum and coke and we race off to aunties.
I have keys to her apartment but alas they are in Hamilton.  Someone lets us in this secure building and we head off to the 10th floor sis bruising knuckles knocking, place a call to sis number three to come over with her keys and I race down to the super’s apartment to let us in.
On entry find auntie barely conscious, dial 911, try to keep her awake.  We figure it is probably hypoglycemia, but she has been ill so follow emergency’s instructions not to give her anything to drink.
Ambulance arrives and the next hour and a half spent trying to get her blood sugar up which finally happens almost to an astounding normal of 4.4 and parameds leave.  She seems better, others must go and I also tired I could lay on the floor to sleep.  We get in the elevator to leave but I have to return, she has been I’ll after all.
Long long long night and good thing I stayed.  She has trouble with her cough and breathing so I get her ventolin from kitchen.  Breathing easier but still restless.
Finally at 6:50am she falls asleep.  By 9 I let her know I have to go sleep.  Family will be here shortly to do Christmas baking.  Sis is at work til 3 but I am supposed to go visit sis in law at noon.
Have left a note for the bakers that I am sleeping but not to worry about noise. Will try to get a couple of hours..have set alarm.  Sis left her cell at home so cannot let her know updates.
Am soooooo tired but not sure I can sleep.   I expect that one drink at dinner party tonight will render me..well…will see.
That’s it for now. Hope y’all have a wonderful day.

Mama Kat’s Thanksgiving Post

That Mama Kat

Mama Kat’s Thanksgiving Post

Naturally today being the most important holiday to our American friends all five of this week’s prompts are about Thanksgiving; favourite recipes, traditions, fav memory, poems and who is cooking the turkey.  There are a considerable number of us outside the festivities but this does not exclude us from participating or giving thanks.

Thankfulness is international.  That is, the celebration and appreciation of thanks.  We can all be thankful but of course we do not have to be either. And what we are thankful for depends on age.  When I was a child I was thankful for a new toy perhaps.  I tend to think children were actually more thankful back then, but I could be wrong.

Even though it is popular, not just today to express our thankfulness, I wonder if some of us are really capable of giving sincere thanks or if we just say it.  I have met people so embittered by life they could not see anything to be glad of.  I wonder if in spite of what we have if we are losing our ability to be thankful, if we are just becoming expectant.

I won’t give a list of the things I am grateful for today, I will just give thanks that I am grateful.  It takes heart to be capable of thankfulness and to have heart we must have the ability to feel for others not ourselves.  Thankfulness is not about ourselves, it is about all we are connected to outside of, which then becomes inside of us.

So no thanksgiving here, just a blessing:

MAY ALL TODAY, WHETHER ALONE OR WITH OTHERS, FIND THEIR HEARTS AND MINDS TOUCHED.

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SHAWN ROCK ROCKS!

The Real Royal Wedding
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

SHAWN ROCK ROCKS
 
Coming Soon!
 
Y’all will remember The Real Royal Wedding that took place May 14, 2011 and the MOG (Mother of the Groom).
 
Fascinators were at a minimum probably because Princess Beatrice was unable to attend but the Royal Chef truly rocked. I have had requests for more about this culinary delight, his business and where you can find him.
 
So I thought I would whet your appetites by letting you know  I am in the process of setting up an interview so I can accurately portray the story and skills of this incredible man and his team.
 
Hopefully I will have the delicious details soon!