Wednesday, October 1, 2014

PROJECT 52 - WEEK 17 - STRUGGLING


I always love turning the calendar page over to a new month, it's like a fresh start. I've been struggling with my "project" the last couple weeks, not enough exercise, too much unhealthy food. Aiming to put a lot more stars one the calendar this month to mark my work outs.  

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

PROJECT 52 - WEEK 16 - FALL FOODS

The first full day of Fall was yesterday and with it's arrival came my cravings for what I consider "Fall Food".

I am a seasonal eater. I love my salads and berries in the warmer months, but come the end of September I start to crave soups, stews, and roasted vegetables.

With Thanksgiving so close, I thought I'd share my Slow Cooker Turkey Barley Soup Recipe. It has been viewed over 1500 times on my blog, I wish I had a way of knowing how many of those people actually made it. It's a simple, but delicious and healthy recipe, and the convenience of using a slow cooker just makes it that much better! I make this probably once a month in the colder months. Let me know if you make it, or even better, share your favorite Fall recipe in the comments section!

SLOW COOKER TURKEY BARLEY SOUP

6 Cups Chicken Broth (or homemade stock)
1-2 Cups diced cooked Turkey (or chicken)
1/3 Cup Pearl Barley
1/2 Cup Chopped Onion
2 Celery Stalks, sliced
3 Carrots, sliced
1-2 Bay Leaves
1 tsp Thyme
2 tsp dried Parsley
Salt & Pepper to taste.

Cook in slow cooker on low for 6 hours.

NOTE: I will quite often add a whole leftover turkey leg or wing for extra flavor. All the meat falls off while the soup cooks. Remove the bones and skin when done.

Friday, September 19, 2014

ROB & ANGIE GO CAMPING!

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This past weekend Rob and I did something we hadn't done in over a decade, we went camping! We joined our friends, Dave and Andi, at Presqu'ile Provincial Park for a long weekend to celebrate Rob's birthday. They went up a day before us and were all set up for us when we arrived.

I'm doing this blog a little different, since it's mainly pics, I'm numbering them, with a description below.  Enjoy, we did!  (click on a picture to enlarge)  

Pic 1 -  Welcome to "Chateau Dave", a lovely 2 bedroom bungalow on the shores of Lake Ontario. Features include; small kitchenette, sitting area, fireplace, and vast living-room. Comes with pets;   chipmunks, raccoons, and skunks. Bring peanuts!


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Pic 2 - The perfect wine for this group! The men don't drink wine, so Andi and I enjoyed it.

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Pic 3 - Saturdays dinner was this amazing salmon, served with stir fried veggies and something called "cheesy hobo potato bundles". YUMMY!

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Pic 4 - Angie enjoying the fire.

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 Pic 5 - The girls didn't do much birding this trip, preferring to enjoy our time at the campsite. We did go out with the boys on Sunday morning for a bit and saw a good variety of species, including this Palm Warbler, on his way south for the winter.

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 Pic 6 - Dave and Andi looking for birds, and picture taking opportunities.

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 Pic 7 - This Hummingbird back at the campsite was our "bird nerd" moment of the trip. The campsite across from us had vacated earlier and I went over to check it out. I noticed the Hummingbird enjoying the Jewelweed plant and let the others know. All three of them came running with their cameras. Our neighbors were highly amused and in awe of the camera equipment!

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 Pic 8 - Another shot of the Hummingbird, she stayed around quite awhile.

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 Pic 9 - I can honestly say I have NEVER seen so many Dragonflies in one place as I did last weekend, it was truly magical. I think this is a Shadow Darner, but I'm not 100% sure.
 
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Pic 10 - Monarchs were plentiful too. Here is one with an Eastern Comma. Golden Rod feeds the Monarchs and their long journey to Mexico.

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 Pic 11 - This field was full of Dragonflies! There were 100's of them flying everywhere. Rob and I walked carefully as to not step on the ones on the grass. I'd never seen anything like it! Watching them through the binoculars was awesome, their wings sparkled in the sun like diamonds.   

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 Pic 12 - The perfect camping lunch, beans and wieners with bread and lots of butter!

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 Pic 13 - We did the Lay's taste test of the new flavours. We all enjoyed the Jalapeno Mac & Cheese, and would leave Cinnamon Bun on the shelf.

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 Pic 14 - My cool hubby roasting marshmallows.

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 Pic 15 - Isn't he cute?

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 Pic 16 - Chef Andi did all the cooking this trip, and every meal was awesome. We ate very well all weekend thanks to her. She could do things on an open fire that I'd be scared to attempt.

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Pic 17 - Steak and shrimp was Rob's birthday dinner, he's so spoiled!


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Pic 18 - Dinner is served! Everything was delicious.

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Pic 19 - The four of us enjoying dinner. Andi and Rob have funny looks on their faces because they have food in their mouths! It was too good to stop eating!

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 Pic 20 - The boys cleaned up after dinner and did dishes.

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 Pic 21 - Making Jiffy Pop for the first time in 25 years or more!

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Pic 22 - Early birthday gift from Dave and Andi, White Owl Whiskey. I'll say it again, he's so spoiled!

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 Pic 23 - This shot is a little blurry, but it captures the atmosphere of the weekend.

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 Pic 24 - Tear down breakfast! No one one was hurt fighting over the Fruit Loops.

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Pic 25 - And "Poof", just like that, it was gone, all thanks to Speedy Gonzales Dave!


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Pic 26 - I can't believe I almost forgot to include a Chipmunk picture! The Chipmunks were fun all weekend long. This one got quite comfortable with me and would crawl all over me and he even let me tickle his belly! Note to self - Bring more peanuts next year!