Thursday, April 23, 2009

Bread

I’m on a bread kick. And that doesn't bode well for the health kick that I’m also trying to be on. ‘Just say no to dough’ is a phrase that I've heard said by healthy looking people who have the energy to jog at 5am. I think it is a bit overrated - the saying no to great stuff like bread. I feel that chasing after 2 little kids is my exercise and my excuse to keep on the bread band wagon.
It all started with 2 wonderful books and the fact that Josh built me a kitchen that I love. The first book was TASTE, which is not a book but rather the BC Liquor store’s free food and wine magazine that has 100’s of great recipes ( paired with great bottles of wine of course)
It was a cold winter night, and after walking out of the store with a
faithful red tucked under my arm (and Jesse in the other) a bright
light shone from TASTE and I opened it to a life changing Brioche.


A savory cheve, caramelized onion and herbs brioche that is. I do believe there are many a great recipe for brioche with a chocolate filling too...I might have to tackle that next.


The 2nd and main cookbook that has brought me into this new break making addiction is Richard Bertinet’s ‘Crust’.
I’m writing all this as the house smells of fresh baked bread ( a light sourdough) and I can’t help but be passionately moved to talk about my love for bread. It’s not just the eating of it, I love making bread. I love the way it all starts as this wet goopy mush and forms into a beautiful ball of dough. ( I’d love to say that I have the time and arm stamina to do it all by hand, but I rely on my trust kitchenaid mixer) I love the smell, the artful way you can shape it, and cut patterns on the top to let the steam burst out. But yes, I do really really enjoy eating bread.

My heart was fluttering with warm fuzzies when I watched Ava sitting in her chair with a piece of bread in hand slowly eating around the edge of her bread- she was eating the crust first! She likes it, she really really likes it!

I had a 3rd grade teacher who used to always remind us that chewing produces saliva to help us digest our food and to Chew chew chew … 30 times per bite...and she did it!

No more of this crustless mushy 'wonder'bread. ( what is so wonderful about that stuff anyway? )


Well, I think it is time for a cup of tea, and of course , a slice of bread.


Nutella anyone?




Saturday, April 4, 2009

Quick trip to Mexico

I was surfing some of my fave travel web sites a couple of weeks ago and ended up on the West jet website. After making a few quick keystrokes on the site we found ourselves on a 737 two weeks later. Laura was pretty stoked as it's been a long winter and with two small kids you certainly loose some mobility and are more housebound than you'd like. So, this was a treat for her. We know we are truly fortunate to jet off to a warm climate like this - it hasn't become commonplace for us.

We stayed 8 km north of Mazatlan at a large 3.5 star hotel called Pueblo Bonito.. Its a beautiful Mexican styled hotel owned and staffed by locals. We were there for just eight nights - but it was a perfect time. We had a one bedroom suite with a small kitchenette and west facing balcony. From the balcony we watched eight glorious sunsets and also the five flamingos that stayed free of charge at the hotel .
On our first few hours there we went out in the ocean to play. Ava was immediately knocked over by a wave- no big deal but then she got away on me, climbed up onto a wall and surprised Pancho the resident black iguana. Both of them were quite frightened. Ava had a good thumb sucking session after that.. Jesse ate many, many hand fulls of wet pacific sand and cut his third tooth on it!
Dad and Mum had some time to hang out , think, ponder life and work on their Margarita recipe but mostly fed, changed and tended to the kids somewhere new and without the slush and snow for a week. PS - the local food was tops!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Tyhee Lake Event

Rudy pulling the kids

Coming back for lunch!
Yea! wood fire and smokies!
Jon + Liam + Choc milk



Stress testing the Igloo





Me n' Ava inside the Igloo




Ava!





Ava climbing

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Ski bums and little bums

It was 10 feet of snow, 5 little kids, and a cabin full of parents who are more than happy to be 'out of town' for a holiday.

Powder King Ski Bum Retreat!

My sister Lisamaire and her husband David are skiers- hard core skiers. Lisa is a woman who, after giving birth to a whopping 9lb.10oz baby ( very cute by the way) can fly down the mountain ( out of bounds) only 8 weeks after she popped him out.
Their son Ivor strapped on skis for the weekend ( at the age of 2) and 8 week old Grayson had a rare foot anomaly where he was actually born with skis attached to his feet.

Needless to say, we were thankful for this ski bum family to invite our family and my brother's family to get off our bums and get together.


We all met up at Powder King ski hill outside of PrinceGeorge BC. It was a central meeting grounds for all of us. Lisa's family came down from Grande Prarie, we had an equal distance drive from the west, and Jeff and his family made their way from Prince George.


Josh and I arrived at the cabin first, and the GrandPrarie ski bums arrived about an hour later. Ava was more than thrilled to see her cousin Ivor. They are only 2 weeks apart in age and kept themselves busy together for the whole weekend...very, very, busy.


Josh pulled out the super-dad card right away and sent me out the door to ski with David. We skied for the rest of that afternoon, getting to know the hill and steal some of that great untouched powder that this place is known for.


Now, David is a strong skier, and I ( Laura) have taken up telemark skiing ( aka- misery sticks) I really do enjoy this type of skiing, but it really really burns the quads...just imagine doing deep lunges all the way down a mountain. Needless to say, when we finished our day, I hobbled up the stairs of our cabin- legs shaking like they had 8 shots of espresso in them , and collapsed on the couch with a very important thing from the fridge: beer. I decided then and there that I was going to alpine ski for the rest of the weekend so I could survive. No more rock'n in the free-heeled world for this girl for a few days.


Lisa cooked supper - a pizza for a 5pm appetizer and after the kids went to bed we had good old dutch 'stumpot' ( Mashed potatoes with kale, served with Ukrainian sausage, mustard and lots of butter)


We all had a pretty good night's sleep and after some bacon and eggs Josh and David hit the slopes. I was on a mission to get the 2 year olds out side, and did we ever play. The snow piles on either side of the cabin 'drive way' were 10 feet high. We dug snow caves, made snow slides-with snow stairs, had a snow tea party in our snow house and even took the sleds to the hills and did some crazy tobogganing. All in all- they were quite worn out and ready for lunch and a nap. Jeff and Jenn arrived Saturday morning too. Part our our morning outside excitement was uncle Jeff chucking the kids to the top of the snow banks.


That afternoon a rare thing happened. The 3 siblings hit the slopes together- something that we haven't done for years. Jeff ripped up the hill on his snowboard, Lisa and I hooted and yipped all the way down the hill. A little bit of chocolate in Dad's honour and some other 'snacks' up the chair lift helped with the excitement.


We hit the cabin with grins on our faces and had a fabulous Valentines dinner to wrap up the day. Chicken enchiladas, Jenn's fabulous salad and some pretty amazing margaritas that Josh mixed up- made with snow, clean snow.


Sunday morning brought on David's famous Sunday morning pancakes and more skiing of course. Josh and I had the rare treat of heading out to the slopes together- sans kids!


After a morning of great snow and turns we hiked out of bounds to the summit of the mountain and rode a beautiful and long run all the way to the cabin complete with deep untouched powder, some tree skiing, ravines, little cliffs and a direct route to our cabin.


Sunday night brought more good food and a time to hang out. Monday morning we had one last family meal and took a few pictures of the whole gang.


We didn't have a cloud in the sky the whole weekend, and in the -18 winter sunshine we all headed home in our various directions vowing to do it all over again....hmmmm 5 toddlers running around a ski cabin. I think we can handle it.

video


Saturday, February 7, 2009

Vancouver with Mum











I recently spent four days in Vancouver with my dear Mum. I was heading there for Lasic corrective eye surgery and invited Mum to come along as a travel-mate and also a nurse for the first night as this was recommended to me. We had a great time and turned the time before and after into a nice little holiday.
We left a blustery Smithers on Sunday and met up with Haidi and kids who had arrived in Vancouver on a layover an hour ahead of us. So, on Aunt Julie's recommendation we all went to the Flying Beaver - a bar/restaurant that's located near vancouver airport on an estuary where all the float planes land & take off. We sat in a cheery, warm sun room and had some great seafood. We lingered over coffee and desert( well we lingered over coffee but the two enormous deserts were a full on race with the kids!) It was great to see Haidi, Lyra & Marley for a few hours. - Mum also presented Haidi with a thick handmade blanket for the new Baby!After getting the Telles back to the main terminal Mum and I made our way to Granville Island and checked into the only Hotel on the Island. We had a meal there and recharged for the next day. We woke to the sound of birds and gulls and a view of boats and water. Granville Island did not disappoint. Monday morning saw lots of sleepy arts students arriving to their classes. It was so much more peaceful than the city and still quite central for us as we were on foot.
We were out the door at 7:30 and had an amazing coffee and pastries at the market before catching a seabus to false creek. By 9:00 we were shopping at a kitchen store in chinatown and by 11:00 we were buying rugs at an afghan rug shop in gastown... Our next stop was lunch@ the YewBar in the four seasons downtown -- certainly overpriced.. but probably a great spot for a late night martini.

We ended up shopping all up and down W. Broadway in Kitsilano and I squeezed my pre-op visit in there somewhere. Tues was an early morning walk , then breakfast at the market and a bit of poking around before the dreaded eye surgery at 11:00 AM.

Overall the laser eye surgery was a good experience. Four days later I'm seeing the world cleared than I ever have with no glasses and no contacts.. I was thoroughly sick of both of them.

My heart was thumping a bit as I took the elevator to the fifth floor clinic. I had lost mum and was on my own for a bit. One of the attendants there gave me a GREAT cocktail of drugs to calm my nerves... vallium, adavan and gravol I think.. My surgeon was a gentle British man and walked me through everything. I lay down under a big battleship-like machine and had one eye taped open and one taped closed. They put various things in my eye to prep for the laser and then somehow cut a "C" shaped flap and hinged up part of my cornea and then vaporized some of the cornea underneath and then put the flap back down and positioned it.. This all happened in a minute or two. Minutes later I opened both eyes a crack, donned big dark glasses and took a cab back to the Granville Island Hotel.
The next 12 hrs were a blur and Mum put four different drops into my eyes at intervals and I awoke the next day feeling great! We then continued our manic pace of shopping, touring and eating until our flight home at 5:00 pm. Oh, we toured the Van. Boat show that day too- and Mum even went out sailing.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Pictures and Tidbits

Ava at Gymnastics

This month seemed to just fly by! Here we are on the 31st - its snowing lightly and we've had the whole gamut of winter weather. We've had the really cold stuff, a big dump of snow, super warm and raining and back to minus five and light snow.


The family has certainly got some routines down. Laura does stroller or sled walks, I try and x-country ski twice a week. Ava does a bit of everything, drawing on walls, making forts, art, and gymnastics on Saturday mornings. Dad works and does paperwork.. Mum shops online.. and keeps things completely ship shape on the home front.

video


Drumming with Mom

Winter with the two kids has taken it's toll too - some days we're on the edge of insanity .. and then its FINALLY bedtime for Ava - its mainly her who works us over. We really love these little people and some days I look at their childhood and already it seems to be going by so fast. Jesse is such a sweetie ! Right now He's into sitting up, watching his sister and eating - He can really pound back the rice cereal and mashed veggies!He loves the cat and has recently mastered the art of drumming too~!

I think I'll take this opportunity to sign off and nap while the rest of the Wimbushes are doing
just that. -J
Sledding with Liam in Telkwa


Friday, January 16, 2009

Sitting Up and a New Tooth!

Greetings from a 'guest' blogger. I just thought that I'd add a little post of my not so little man. It's been an epic week: Sitting up, a first tooth and hit the 20lb mark. Enjoy the pics!
Our little smiley 'working' man. Yes, Carharts
come in his size!
Hanging out in Ava's room.

Still getting the feeling of sitting up.
xoxo
Laura