Yesterday, Victoria Day, doesn’t count because I don’t think we really ate anything. We had a few toasts to the Queen, some firework cheers, and a few night caps so …. Today I’m craving comfort food! Planning great summer meals inspired by the South.
Tuesday – Mini-Turkey Meatloaf with green beans
Wednesday – Cobb Salad
Thursday – Dinner at mom’s
Friday – Planked Salmon and grilled vegetables
Saturday – Cheesy Grits and Okra Casserole
Sunday – Leftovers
Thought I’d give you an update on the Powder Room Reno. We are still amassing all the items we need. So far we have:
a few tchotchkes
a soap pump
new door handles
a vent fan and electrical stuff
and many many paint chips
So we are doing pretty well!
The sink will get picked up this week and the faucet has been ordered. Our light ended up being on back-order but should be arriving on Monday. We are going to the US this weekend and were hoping to pick it up at the border on our way back. If it is not there we will have to make a second trip. The people at Shades of Light have been amazing in trying to get it to us on time. I literally have an e-mail reading “If the paint dries in time it will ship today,” and it did. Keep your fingers crossed for us!
It is not even a surprising trend anymore; pets at weddings. People take their dog out for engagement photo shoots and have their puppy bear the rings down the aisle. I’ve even been in a wedding with chiuaua flower girls.
And I love it! As pets become more and more part of our lives, it is natural for us to want to include them in one of our most special days. But here is the thing; I have cats. Cats are not going dawn a flower collar and adorably deliver rings on a pillow, nor will they sit quietly by during the exchange of the vows.
Cats hate the car, hate change, and hate being anywhere that isn’t their territory. Even if you did have the patience, preservation, and energy to train your cat to do those things, you would be going against his nature and it would not be representative of your relationship with him.
There is a way to include your fuzz-ball in the Big Day, and that is at home … or, by a stretch that only includes travel-accustomed cats, maybe in the hotel room that you will be getting ready in.
How To Include The Cat in Your Wedding
Cats will pick up on the energy in the house, they will sense the festive atmosphere and react accordingly. Hopefully everything is going smoothly and everyone’s stress level is at a minimum. The little guys will be naturally curious about all the wedding paraphernalia and will have to investigate. Your instinct might be to isolate them in safe place, and with people coming in and out, high heels, and fun camera wires laying around, that may be a good idea. But in the quiet moments of your final prep, waiting for the car, or when you are taking pictures for the ‘getting ready’ part of the day, let in the cats andd ask your photographer to capture them interacting with some key items of the wedding. Introduce them to ribbons on a program, your shoes, or if you are very brave … the rings!
Your cat will also likely be very interested in you on the wedding day. Your hair is going to smell like a salon, you might have a cool veil to hide under, you will be holding a fun looking bunch of flowers, not to mention wearing a beautiful white dress that would look better with a little fur all over it. In the midst of all the hustle and bustle, pause and have moment with your cat. Let him know that its still you, this is a positive experience, you still love him and like having him around. This will also likely calm you down and put things in perspective. Today in not about hair or harpists, today is about love. Today you are creating a family, and your cat is already a member.
If the photographer can capture those emotions, you will have a treasured memory forever.
As fun as candid shots are, formal photos are a wedding requirement. Go for broke and demand a formal shot with your cat. Pick him up and cuddle him, shamelessly stare boldly into the camera. Grab the groom and do a fun family shot with the first thing you ever loved and nurtured together as a couple. If there are a few snickers and whispers from certain not-so-awesome wedding guests; own it. You are the crazy cat couple and this is your day!
I have wanted rain-barrels forever. They make so much sense! Why waste clean drinking water on plants and grass? Why pay for something that is free?
I like free.
But as they say, you have to spend money to
make save money, so when the opportunity came up to buy a pair of old white-oak whiskey barrels off some guy on Kijiji, I didn’t pass it up.
Here they are, delivered for $200.
To turn the whiskey barrels into rain barrels, I also had to buy two Earth Minded DIY Rain Barrel kits from the BEST store on the planet, Canadian Tire. They were $30 each.
The kit includes everything you need to make the rain barrel; hoses, spigot, rubber gaskets, even the hole saws. The only tools we needed were an electric drill, a leveller, measuring tape, a long screw (important!), a pencil, work gloves and safety glasses.
The barrels need to be placed within 3 feet of a down spout on a level surface. We had some old pavers lying around and used those to set the barrels on.
The kit came with detailed instructions, and we also found this video very helpful.
One snag in the process was that the wood of our barrel was thicker than the hole saws were deep. Liam figured out a solution fairly quickly. Just saw as far as you can in the wood and stop. Insert your long screw into the drill hole so it gets a good grip, then twist and pull. The whiskey-soaked wood should splinter easily releasing a large layer. Go back with the whole saw and cut in the rest of the way.
Last year Ottawa experienced a drought for much of the summer. We were told to stop watering our lawns and gardens. Then there was a rash of house fires caused by the extremely dry conditions of people’s lawns, and we were told to start watering again! This year I will be prepared with gallons of stored rain water to partial out during the hot dry days.
Plastic barrels can of course be purchased in garden centres everywhere, but these don’t always look great and aren’t cheap either. For $130 a piece and one afternoons work, I am very pleased with the aesthetic of my barrels. They add character and history to my yard while helping to simultaneously save a precious resource … and on my water bill!
One more long week before the May two-four weekend! The bubby and I are taking advantage of Monday off by heading over the border for a shopping spree! I am desperate need of some summer essentials… I might even make a list. I love lists.
Monday – Bubby has a work-thing, I’ll eat whatever
Tuesday - Shrimp Pad Thai
Wednesday – Penne with Chicken and Asparagus
Thursday - Brew Master’s Dinner at Mill Street
Friday – Leftovers!
Saturday – Dinner with mother-in-law in Kingston
Sunday – Dinner in hotel pub after a shopping spree!
Ask your mom and she will tell you that the most treasured Mother’s Day gifts are the ones you made her when you were a kid. You know, the crappy crayon pictures of you and her together, construction paper flowers, and those ‘adorable’ fill-in the blank cards that read something like;
My mom’s the best because she always maks my lunch. My mom’s job is cleaning the house, and her favourite hobby is making me diner … etc.
Yes, that is a direct quote from my life from when I was a self-centered little prick (a.k.a. a child). Yet my mom loved it and even though I am grown up now and can afford to buy my mom flowers and brunches and hallmark cards, she still likes the handmade gifts the best. This year I’m giving my mom a bottle of my home-made linen spray.
What You Need
- Distilled water (mine is from Loblaws)
- Witch hazel (mine is from WalMart)
- Essential oil (mine is from New Directions Aromatics)
- Plastic 8 0z. bottle (mine is from Nature’s Garden)
- Label and a pen
What You Do
- Start by adding 2 tsp (10 mL) of witch hazel into the bottle.
- Add about 30 drops of oil, screw on cap and shake.
- Fill the bottle with distilled water.
- Label and you’re done!
Linen is inherently wrinkly and needs to be sprayed damp before it can be ironed. Scented linen spray will add a yummy light scent to the fabric. You can also use it as a room spray, spritz it on furniture, curtains, and in the car. I made a French Lavender and Lemongrass but there literally hundreds of essential oils to choose from.
Happy Mother’s Day!
Ottawa has new street food vendors and I want to try them all!
There are 18 f them, so this will be a challenge, but what a great motivation for getting out into the city, support small businesses, and sample the ever evolving Ottawa food scene.
If I average one a week I should be through by the end of September. Wish me luck or join me in the challenge!
For bios on all the owners, check out Ottawa Citizen Style blog.
Okay, so this is turning into a blog that just lists what I have for dinner every day. Exciting eh? No not at all.
My apologies, it was a busy week. I swear to you though, I have 5 solid posts sitting in my Drafts folder, just waiting for finishing touches. So stay tuned, I can be better.
But now the moment we’ve all been waiting for …
Monday – BBQ chicken and tomato cucumber salad
Grilled cheese sandwiches Subway
Simple Summer Spaghetti Dinner & Drinks on a patio
Thursday - Dinner at Mill Street Brew Pub
Friday – Bagels and Lox
Saturday – BBQ Hot Dogs
Sunday – Mother’s Day dinner at Heart & Crown
The name of the game this week is quick. That way I have time to photograph, edit and write!