August 24, 2015

Winding Down and Gearing Up

The lazy(?!) days of summer are winding down in these here parts.
Just switching gears in my brain for the upcoming school year.
Things are gearing up for that.  Welcome Fall!

In light of this transitional time, a break from 
blogging seems to be a wise course of action.


Lord-willing, I'll be back once school is underway 
and we are in a good routine with all things academic.  
Likely, that will be two or three weeks from now.

In the meantime, I'd like to leave you with these
encouraging words from the Holy Bible.

"The LORD is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble;
and He knoweth them that trust in Him."  Nahum 1:7
Are you trusting in Him?  That truly is the only way forward.
Absolutely the only way.

With Love, Camille

August 19, 2015

Janine's Indian Chicken

She shared this recipe with me a little while back.
I've made it a few times and my family approves.  Heartily.

No complaints and clean plates all around.

In honour of it's roots, it's been dubbed "Janine's Indian Chicken".
I've tweaked and adjusted in order to land on our favourite combination.
Adapt it to your liking.  You really can't go wrong.


What you need:

2 medium Sweet Potatoes (often referred to as Yams) ~ chopped and roasted
1 medium head Cauliflower ~ chopped and roasted
Olive Oil for roasting

3 Tbsp Olive Oil
3 large boneless, skinless Chicken Breast ~ cubed
2 small yellow cooking Onions ~ diced
6 cloves fresh Garlic ~ minced
1/4 cup fresh Ginger ~ minced
8 to 10 medium sized nugget Potatoes ~ quartered

4 tsp Garam Masala
1 Tbsp Cumin
1 Tbsp Turmeric
1 Tbsp Coriander
1 tsp Cardamom
1 tsp Cayenne Pepper
2 tsp Sea Salt

1 tin (14 oz or 400 ml) Coconut Cream (or Milk)
1 tin (14 oz or 400 ml) Tomato Sauce (plain)
1 tin (6 oz or 170 g) Tomato Paste
5 cups Chicken Broth

10 to 12 Campari Tomatoes ~ quartered
1 cup Heavy Cream ~ room temperature
 Raisins and Shredded Coconut for garnish


What you do:

Clean and chop the cauliflower and sweet potatoes.
Arrange on a parchment lined jelly roll pan or baking dish.
Drizzle with olive oil and roast at 425 degrees F for approximately 30 minutes.
The veggies should be tender and just browning on the edges when done.
Remove from the oven and set aside until they are needed.

Measure out the heavy cream and set on the counter.

Meanwhile, in a large pot (10 Quart or bigger),
pour in the 3 Tbsp Olive Oil and set to medium heat.
When the oil is hot, toss in the onions and cubed chicken meat.
Stir fry a few minutes and add the minced garlic and ginger.
Stir fry a few minutes longer until the onion is translucent and
the chicken meat is turning white.

Mix all the dry spices together and add all at once to the chicken mixture
along with the diced nugget potatoes.
Stir and cook a few minutes more.
If your ingredients are sticking to the bottom of the pan,
reduce the heat to low and continue to stir.

Add in the coconut cream, tomato paste, tomato sauce, and chicken stock.
At this point, add in the roasted cauliflower and sweet potatoes.
Turn heat to medium-high and bring everything to a simmer.
Simmer, covered with lid slightly ajar, for 30 to 40 minutes to allow
flavours to mingle and the potatoes to cook through.  Stir occasionally.

In the last five minutes, add in the campari tomatoes and cream.
Be sure to add the cream slowly, while stirring, so it does not curdle.
(I have found it helps to temper the cream with some of the hot sauce
prior to committing it to the pot.)

Taste and check for salt.  We usually just add more at the table.
Serve with raisins and coconut over a bed of rice.
This recipe makes enough for ten (or more?) hungry people.
It freezes well if the need should arise.
However, it is super yummy the next day and the next day after that.
(Freeze for longer storage.)

Always reheat to the boiling point and simmer a few minutes
prior to serving any leftovers.  Always a good rule to follow.

Happy Cooking!!

With Love,
Camille

August 17, 2015

The Quotidian (17. 8. 15)

Quotidian: daily, usual, or customary;
everyday; ordinary; commonplace. 


It called out to me at the beach.
Can you guess which one I am referring to and why?


These ALL called out to Emma!  :)



Pickles ~ SO Easy!!


The clean up.


Wondering if it was worth it.


Fraser's wall ~ his idea at his expense.
Remember what it looked like?
Click here to see (seventh image down).


Another of my favourite things to remember.
Click here and here and here for proof.  :)


Castoffs adopted by me.


An entire scrapbook is nearly all filled up ~
She's only just begun!


Nutmeg explosion.


A little too neon for my liking.
One thing is for certain ~ you can see me coming!


Safe-And-Sound and All-Cleaned-Up!  :)


Currently in the process of getting All-Cleaned-Up.

Happy Monday Y'all!
With Love, Camille

August 14, 2015

Random Recipe Solution

If you're anything like me, you have recipes gathered from a variety of sources.
Hand-written recipes jotted down on the fly from online browsing sessions, 
recipes torn out of food magazines, and some printed off from favourite sources,
all make up my stash of foods-to-someday-try.

I don't transfer a recipe to my tried-and-true recipe box collection
until I know that it's a keeper.


On one of my recent trips to see my sister, she pulled out her recipe binder.
It had recipes within its covers neatly organized into categories
and three-hole-punched and filed away.  All in one place.  Brilliant!


And, then, in recent days, I was visiting Katy's blog and saw this post which
included her wonderful idea for laminated dividers.  
A few weeks passed, and after a little percolating in my brain,
these two ideas merged into one.  A collision of sorts.

This is what has come of that.


I got out my scrapbook papers, paper cutter, and three hole punch, and went to town.
All my loose recipe papers were gathered and categorized.
I cut the scrapbook papers to 9" x 11" and made tabs by cutting the paper to 8.5"
up to the place where the tab would be cut out.  


Prior to laminating, the tabs were labelled and three-hole punched.
After laminating, the edges were trimmed, and a single hole punch was used
to remove the plastic that filled up those holes.


There you have it.  A simple (and pretty) solution for those random
recipes collected while browsing online (or elsewhere) for inspiration and ideas.

How do you deal with all your recipes?
Is your system like this one, or, do you have a different method?
Please tell all.  Inquiring minds want to know.

Happy Friday!
With Love, Camille

August 12, 2015

Coconut Pecan Zucchini Loaf

On my sister's last morning here, we sent them
on their way with a big breakfast in their tummies.
Scrambled eggs, bacon, hash browned potatoes, baked oatmeal
and fresh fruit were all on the menu.

I went out on a limb and took my chances with a new recipe.
Since there was so much food, it wouldn't have mattered
if it had been a flop.  But, it wasn't.  I wish I'd made two.

It ended up being the star of the show.


Coconut Pecan Zucchini Loaf ~ originally found in
"Biscuits, Muffins and Loaves" by Jean Pare  ~ altered slightly.

What you need:

1 large Egg

1/2 cup Cooking Oil (I used grapeseed)

1 cup Sugar (I used evaporated cane juice)

1 cup Zucchini (washed and grated ~ skin, too)

1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract

1 and 1/2 cups all purpose unbleached Flour**

**(I used half whole wheat and half all purpose in the loaf pictured here ~
but, I must admit, the loaves with only white flour were prettier and lighter.
You'll have to decide which route you want to go with this one.
I wash my hands of it.  Next time, however, I plan to make them with all white.)

1/2 tsp Baking Powder

1 tsp Baking Soda

1/2 tsp Sea Salt

1 tsp ground Cinnamon

1/2 tsp ground Nutmeg

1/2 cup medium, shredded, unsweetened Coconut

1/2 cup chopped Pecans (I used soaked and dried)

1/2 cup Craisins (dried cranberries)



What you do:

Beat the egg, cooking oil, and sugar together in large mixing bowl.
Stir in the zucchini and vanilla.  Set aside.

In a medium bowl, mix together all the dry ingredients, including the nuts
and craisins.  Stir thoroughly.

Combine the wet and dry ingredients together in the large mixing bowl.
Stir until just moistened and all the dry ingredients are incorporated.

Line a 9 x 5 x 3 inch loaf pan with parchment paper.
(Or, grease the pan if you don't use parchment.  I love using parchment!)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Bake at 350 F for 1 hour until wooden toothpick tester comes out clean.
Cool for 10 minutes in the pan.  Remove to rack to cool completely.

This loaf cuts better the next day.
For our breakfast, I baked one of these (not the one pictured)
the night before.  It sliced up beautifully.  And, tasted even better.

Happy Breakfasting!  Or, tea-time-ing!  :)

With Love,
Camille

August 10, 2015

The Quotidian (10. 8. 15)

Quotidian: daily, usual, or customary;
everyday; ordinary; commonplace. 


Evening sun.  Peaches on the counter.


More and more and more of this book.




A just-because picture that we finally got framed.
Thank you, Dad, for taking such good care of it for us.


Creativity in progress ~ Emma has entered the world of scrapbooking.




Turn of events and altered plans.
Someone forgot to bring the key for the bike rack ~
so, we went for a drive instead.

It was Fraser's birthday outing.  We made the most of it.
As it happens, he was pleased with the outcome.
Ice cream was involved.  What's not to like?

Happy Monday Y'all!
With Love, Camille

August 7, 2015

Sixteen!

It seems to have happened overnight.
While I was looking the other way....


...Fraser went from a three-foot-nothing cutie pie....


...to a six-foot-one-inch young man!!


How quickly the time flies by!
(Don't we all say the same thing when it comes to our children?)


We are so very thankful for the years the Lord has graciously given us
with our third son.  We feel incredibly blessed!!


Fraser's all set for another camping excursion.
He looks happy about it, doesn't he?
Don't even ask what my thoughts are about it all.
However, I am not planning to run away like I did last time.  :)


Fraser, we are so thankful that the Lord gave us YOU!!
What a precious addition to our family you were and are.
It would just not be the same without you.

Our prayer is that you will always follow the Lord 
with all of your heart for all your days.

He alone is worthy of all your praise and dedication.
He is faithful and will never leave nor forsake you. 
Our greatest desire is that He will be the One you live for.  Always.

All our love to you, precious son.
Your Dad and Mum XOXO

August 5, 2015

Sister Time!

I only have one sister.
And, as it happens, one brother as well.
Just the three of us.  And, since my sister lives in California,
we don't have much (in the flesh) sister time.

We chat on the phone and text, but, it's not the same thing
as an in-person visit.  Definitely not quite as good.


My brother lives only five minutes away.
Brother time is easier to orchestrate.  And, it is a good thing.
But, this post is not about that.  :)
The three of us together is an extremely rare treat.


My sister has hosted us multiple times in her home.
Click here and here and here and here and here for proof of that.
So, a little reciprocal hospitality was in order.

First, their girl arrived.  Ahead of her parents.  On a plane.  Alone.
The rest of her family followed behind a little over a week later by car.


They stayed with us for a total of nine nights.

The days and nights were full of activity.
Some of that activity involved us, and some didn't.
Since my sister and her hubby both grew up here,
they had many people to see.  Many people to catch up with.

A few nights, we were already in bed when they arrived home.
They didn't wake us up on their way in ~ so quiet and considerate.


They left exhausted.
But, happy.  I think?  ;-)

We are looking forward to another visit soon.
The house has gotten strangely quiet in their absence.
Family truly is a blessing from the Lord.

With Love,
Camille

**Photos in this post courtesy of Calvin ~
Thank you, my love  xoxo

July 27, 2015

The Quotidian (27. 7. 15)

Quotidian: daily, usual, or customary;
everyday; ordinary; commonplace. 


My baker.




Her customer.


My window cleaner ~ he used to get paid for jobs like this.
Now, he just gets a happy wife.  :)


My deck scrubber.

Happy Monday!
With Love, Camille

July 24, 2015

On the Topic of Books

My friend was over for a quick visit a few weeks back.
We got chatting about a number of things, as we mamas often do.
One of the topics involved book recommendations for her youngest two.
It's no secret that we love books around these here parts.

I informally promised a post on the topic of books. (Here it is!)
This list has been organised in order of age-appropriateness.
The following recommendations are for approximately ages eight to twelve.

Any novels by Enid Blyton are always a treat.
Our boys as well as Emma have enjoyed her writing extensively.
I've posted about some of her work here before ~ click here to see.

Another series of books involve a talking/witty pig named Freddy.
Again, these books have been enjoyed by all of our children.
Click here to read the post on those books.


Bobbsey Twins novels were a hit with Emma when she was younger.
These are wonderful beginner novels with stories that are age appropriate.
They are great for both boys and girls due to the fact that there are two boys
and two girls in this family of adventurers.

Pollyanna by Eleanor H. Porter ~ a wonderful read from my childhood days.
I remember squirrelling myself away one summer to read this in a quiet place.
The author does a lovely job of transporting her reader into another time and place.

Little House on the Prairie series of nine books by Laura Ingalls Wilder.
These classic books are written in an easy to read and quietly entertaining way.

Our boys all enjoyed the "Shadow" and "Scout" series of books by Piet Prins.
Even our non-readers were held captive by these stories.
Click here to read my previous post on them.

These next books listed are appropriate for approximately twelve and up.
However, I made Emma wait a little longer for the "Anne" titles which
involve marriage and mothering.  As always, it's important for you as the parent
to gauge the reading experiences of your children accordingly.
The following books may require parental involvement and discussion.

Anne of Green Gables series of eight books by Lucy Maude Montgomery.
Anne is a feisty orphan with red hair who wins the hearts of all those who meet her.

The Chronicles of Narnia is a set of seven books by C.S. Lewis.
These are classics that can be read aloud or enjoyed alone.
I remember wanting to create a world through words just like Mr. Lewis had done.
Enchanting and enthralling.  Of course, they have since been made into movies.
But, the books, they paint pictures in the imagination that the screen is unable to do.

All our children loved Little Pilgrim's Progress by Helen L. Taylor.
It's a faithful adaptation of the original classic by John Bunyan.
We've read it over and over again in our family.

Any more to add to this list?
Classics to recommend?  Favourites from your childhood?
Please do share.  We're all ears.

Happy Reading!
With Love, Camille

**I am not in any way compensated for my opinions.
It has always been my policy to recommend what we use and enjoy.

July 22, 2015

Cousin Time!

My sister's girl came to see us.  All the way from California.

So, it was high time she came here!
She fit right in and became of one of the gang.  :)


I even put her to work like one of my own.
The motto around here is, if you don't work, you don't eat.  ;-)



And, we did lots of eating....evidently, she earned her keep.


Emma loved having one on one girl time with her cousin.
They went swimming....


....and coloured....


...side by side.


This is such a gorgeous book ~ the girls each have one.


The requisite group shot was taken ~
but, not without some shenanigans first.  Here's proof.




Oh, well.  It is what it is.
We wouldn't trade any of them for the world!
But, perhaps we should make them work just a little bit harder.  ;-)

Happy Wednesday!
With Love, Camille