Thursday, April 28, 2011

Busy Bee

Things have been pretty crazy lately. A and I have been frantically getting the yard work done. We have a bigger patio now...and a concrete walkway :)...they are gorgeous. The weather could have cooperated a bit better. We had to constantly tarp everything so the concrete had enough time to set. Our fence is pretty much all done now too. Emma loves having free range in the backyard. I love it, but get nervous that shes going to dig her way to China...or under the fence...or in my garden.. cross your fingers she stays a good girl!

In other news...A left for camp today. He has gone up to Fort Mac to start an electrical apprenticeship. We are excited for this opportunity! Its going to suck having him away again, but it shouldn't be as long as it was last time. This time he will be doing a couple turn arounds, then hopefully school and so on... Im gonna miss him, but it'll be worth it in the end!! Emma is going to miss him too...(she is kinda obsessed with him..)

Lastly...this weekend is...MY BESTIE C'S STAGETTE! Im so so excited. Ive been slightly stressed...nervous planning it. I dont think I would be a very good event planner. I get to nervous about how things will turn out. I want everything to be perfect.. Cross your fingers that the weather is gorgeous..and warm!! Photos to come!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Oh happy day!

Look what arrived today...

This small package elicited so much excitment...
Look what was inside...

There were even some freebies that I didn't order..

Oh happy day!
In other news...our concrete patio and walkway is getting poured today...the sun is shining...
Its gonna be a good day!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Vegan! I did it!

I made the Avocado pasta dish tonight for dinner (yes its early still..we eat dinner before I go to work at 5:15)...anyways overall the recipe was yummy. Making it was a little challenging as I chose to use my blender to make the sauce... a food processor would have been wiser. I didn't have spaghetti noodles so I used spiral noodles. I also added some parm. cheese (yes I realize now its not really vegan)...but the cheese made it perfect. Both A and I enjoyed it. He wolfed it down, commenting that it was good but chicken would be a nice addition. Anyways I served it up with a side of yams...I was pretty happy with dinner tonight.

Last night was dinner at my parents house. We had a westcoast Easter dinner...salmon, roasted potatoes, crunchy strawberry salad (recipe to come) and carrots. We even had oysters for an appie. I gave an oyster a was okay.. not my fave. Anyways it was great to see my parents, grandparents and brother :).

Allen has been working on opening his eyes more during photos :)

In other news...our yard is coming along. We are getting our back patio extended tomorrow and our walkway paved...EK SO HAPPY! Then our fence is bring fully fenced in...(we are waiting for the concrete truck to come and go)..

Happy Monday!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Celebrating beauty

Recently I discovered an amazing blog, Oh She Glows. Some blogs I visit, I visit just to look at...(I love the pictures and recipes), but for some reason I started reading this blog and I was really impowered by Angela's writing. On one entry she talked about how to overcome negative body image thoughts, how to stop calorie counting, how to be happy. She had a couple of quotes on her blog that I have now written down and plan on reading every day.

"Each morning when I open my eyes I say to myself: I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn't arrived yet. I have just one day, today and Im going to be happy in it." Groucho Marx

"Happiness becomes a habit over time, just as unhappiness does."
Angela from Oh She Glows

Definately give Angela's blog a read over...scratch that...add it to your blog favourites! She also links up to Operation Beautiful..give this website a look through as well.

Avocado Pasta

I just got really excited. I found a yummy...VEGAN recipe (yes, Brooke the carnivore has found a vegan recipe) that I am going to try for dinner tomorrow! Avocado's were on special at the grocery store so I have 4 avocadoes to use up and then I discovered this recipe for 15-minute Creamy Avocado Pasta from the blog Oh She Glows. I cannot wait to try this recipe tomorrow. I will let you know how it turns out. Someone commented on this recipe and said they were going to beef it up with some other veggies which I may do as well. Im thinking adding some carrots would be good...maybe some red peppers... EKKK excited for this recipe!

Saturday, April 23, 2011


Im pretty excited. I ordered some products from LUSH a couple of days ago. I cannot wait for the stuff to come in.

I ordered Grease Lightning and Mud Flats.

I received a sample of grease lightning awhile ago and I liked it, then I read my LUSH Times and found out about this mudflats soap. Hopefully it works good.

While I was at work today the boyfriend, his dad, his stepmom and my dad all worked on our yard. Together they worked on our fence as well as getting forms up for the concrete that is to come. We are extending our patio out as well as creating a walkway/ sidewalk thingy in the front of our house. Its so exciting to see our yard coming together. I will post photos once our concrete gets laid. It was such a nice day for it. The boyfriend has a bit of a sunburn and Im pretty sure his dad was burnt as well.

We went out for dinner as a 'thank you' to his dad and stepmom. We went to a yummy restaurant where I had a souvlaki chicken pita wrap with sweet potato fries. So good! I don't usually get greek food when I go our for dinner (Im not experimental) but Im so glad I tried it!

Anyways tomorrow is Easter dinner at my mom and dads house. Im so excited. We are also celebrating my grandpa's 80th birthday. Cannot wait :) and stories to come!
Hoppy Easter!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Easter weekend..

I'm getting really excited for Easter weekend. I love Easter...and Spring :)

I made these Cadbury Mini Eggs. They turned out okay. The recipe says you get 2 dozen, I only got about 16 cookies and they aren't very big. I liked the recipe for the fact that it was a one bowl recipe. I managed to bake these cookies without having very many dishes after. The cookies aren't the best tasting cookies I have tried, but they are festive. You have to be very careful with the temperature. I actually lowered my temperature for the last 4 cookies as the first dozen were a little brown on the bottom. If you want to try something festive for the holiday weekend give these a try...or maybe find a different recipe! :)

I was in an organizing mood today. I cleaned and organized my cooking bible. I love how organized it looks now. Yes I am one of those people that crave organization, post-it-notes and funky organizers. But isn't she pretty? I just love my cookbook. :)

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

An introduction

I would like to introduce you to a new addition to our household. Blog world meet jade tree.

We recently brought this giant tree home and gave her a place by our big window. Im trying really hard to transplant her so that I can pass the love...or should I say..pass the money tree along.

Last night I tried this delicious chicken recipe and it turned out pretty good. I did change it a bit as I didn't have any sesame oil and I didn't have chicken thighs. I used boneless, skinless chicken breasts and I added a bit of cornstarch to thicken the marinade up. Then I bbq'd the chicken till they were all done. I served it up with a greek pasta salad.

Tonight we are having halibut with salad and yams :) I am trying really hard with my eating again..(refocussing my efforts). I was watching Rachael Ray yesterday and Bob Harper from the Biggest Loser was on. He reminded all the fewers that if you want to lose weight around the waist, proper eating will help with this more than exercise alone. I would love to trim down the middle section so I am trying REALLY hard to be more conscious of what I am eating. Check out Bob Harper's spicy stirfry that he made while on the show.

Not that this is good eating, but I am making these cookies on Friday. I thought since it was Easter, it would be a good excuse for making some mini egg cookies. Don't worry I won't have to worry about eating good while they are sitting on my counter. We have two Easter dinners to go to, so I am going to bring them along and give away :). I love get togethers. Such a good excuse for baking or cooking without the guilt of eating it all.

Have a good day...even if its pouring!!!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The A to Z of me :)

I've noticed that alot of bloggers do an "A to Z" about them so I thought I'd give it a try. I got the A to Z idea from another blog site so give her blog a look-see.

Age: 25
Bed size: queen
Chore you hate: changing the garbage
Dogs: 1...Miss Emma the ridgeback

Miss Emma..pre grassed yard....50 pounds ago...
Essential to start your day: Breakfast...otherwise I get slightly grumpy :)
Favourite color: purple
Gold or silver: silver all the way
Height: 5'5 and a half ;)
Instruments you play: none...I would like to play the guitar or drums
Job title: Teacher-On-Call and tutor
Kids: One day...2 or 3 would be good
Live: In a lovely house with a mountain view :)
Mom's name: Vicki
Nicknames: Depends on who you are asking...Bee, Munchkin, Bubbles, Brooklets, Brookbank...
Overnight hospital stays: Not since I was in grade 6...
Pet peeve: overly fake people...those "hey hon or hey sweetie" type...I hate being called that by someone I barely know or barely see..
Quote from a movie: its so stupid, but I love the seagulls in Finding Nemo that go "mine mine mine". Stupid I know!
Right or left handed: right
Time you wake up: Between 6 and 8am..
Underwear: yes I wear them
Vegetables you dislike: green peppers, eggplant...are olives a vegetable?
What makes you run late: either Emma, something distracting me on the tv or computer, or me changing my outift decision for the day
X-rays you have had: broken bones...
Yummy food you make: Ranch chicken, Spicy Maple wings...cookies :)
Zoo animal: Giraffes and Elephants

Give the A to Z a try for yourself! Look forward to reading it!

To-Do on Tuesday

Good morning! This is my plan for this morning...

I finally finished Half Broke Horse so now I am going to start Still Alice. I've been really excited to start this book! :)

Here is my To-Do list for today:
1. Read :)
2. Return library books...(they are overdue..oops) Done :)
3. Go for a run
4. Do the dishes and clean our kitchen
5. Write 2 student progress reports All done :)
6. Go to the bank
7. Figure out what to make for dinner. I have chicken and brocoli..I want to do something creative with them. So far I'm not sure.
8. Do some yard work....(as of right now..I don't see myself being motivated for this)
Hope you all have a good Tuesday!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Bridal Shower

Yesterday was my lovely friend, Courtney's bridal shower. It was an amazing shower. Her mom planned a very special afternoon. Her mom had a belly dancer come in to do a performance for Court, as well as teaching us how to belly dance. Needless to say I am not coordinated when it comes to belly dancing.

It was so nice to spend the afternoon with some lovely ladies that I just don't get to see enough. I even got to have a visit with my good friends little girl, Avery. It was awesome to see her. It was so cute to see Avery dancing along with the belly dancer.

It was such a great afternoon. Only 2 weeks till her stagette which I am so excited about! Then its the big day!!! :)

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Been in the kitchen...

I have now decided that I was a mixer..the nice mixers.. my dear friend over at scarves&socks has a beauty..and my other dear bestie has a nice pink one. I now want a purple one.. I have a little hand held mixer, but to be honest..I make a mess with it. When I need to cream butter and sugar..things get messy. Anyways.. I made these delicious cookies yesterday and they are delicious!

Then for dinner last night I made these finger lickin' good wings. They turned out pretty good.

We went over to a friends last night to watch the Canucks game..woohoo they won their first game. Im not one of those die hard Canucks fan, but I really enjoy going to their games, enjoying watching the ODD game on tv..but it would be awesome if they could win the cup this year...

In other news...Im reading a good book! I read Glass Castle a little while ago and absolutely loved I picked up another book by the author Half Broke Horses

Once I finish this book, its going to be either Still Alice or The School of Essential Ingredients....have I mentioned that I love thrift stores and book consignments?!?! I love finding a good book for cheap. I did have a bummer moment though. I bought Still Alice from a used bookstore for ten bucks..then went to VV boutique to find it for $3.99..ARG! Oh was too much effort to go and return the book. I have read another book by Lisa Genova and it was great.

Well I better be going...time to find some more music to jazz up my ipod for run numero 2...cross your fingers that I go ;)


Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Flower child

Im kind of excited here...found another funky bowl...  I found it at a thrift store..for $1.99..pretty excited about my fresh looking bowl :)

Oh the places you will see..

I'm feeling a little nostalgic about places I have travelled...and places I am dying to visit. When I was in Australia a few years ago I got to visit the 12 Apostles along the Great Ocean Road. Seeing the 12 Apostles was amazing. It was a particularly cloudy day, but our guide said that it was actually an ideal day to see the sights. He pointed out that most people want the perfect blue skys...however to really see the power of the wind along the coast..stormy days are best. The wind was so powerful...and without much poured. We could have gone up in a little helicopter to fly over the coast line; however with the highs winds, most of us were reluctant to get into a little helicopter. Either way it was a memorable moment from my trip.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

A big moment

Today was my second day working at the same school as my mom. My mom is a school secretary and she has been a huge supporter behind my teaching career. She is amazing at supporting me through the highs and lows of this career, finding cool teaching resources...great books...great ideas.. etc.etc. When I was doing my teacher training I got to work with her during my practicum, which was great! But now that I have been actually working in her school as a teacher..things feel so much different. Working with her on the same level has helped me feel like a real teacher! Sometimes when you are subbing, its hard to feel like a real feel like you are still kind of in between the real teacher feeling...(does that make sense?) Anyways it has been a very fulfilling moment in my teaching career to be able to work alongside such an amazing woman. Its so great to see how much the staff and students love her. I can now check it off my list...I have now worked alongside my mom :) I have finally made it to the place where I am doing a similar job as the one my mom does... I've grown up listening to her stories from the day to day shenagans that happen in I am starting to be a part of those stories!
Love ya mom!

Monday, April 11, 2011

I wanna see you sweat..

I finally got my ass in gear and went for a run today. I went to bed listening to the rain, and woke up to blue sky. I updated my ipod, laced up the runners and went for a little run. I have a love hate relationship with running. I like that feeling when Ive been running for awhile and its like I have built up a tolerance and an endurance. I hate running when I can't get motivated and haven't run in forever. Well today was a bit of hate and a bit of love. The music and sun were working for me..the cramps and sore hip..I hate. Anyways I knows theres such a debate about the overall benefits of running, but sometimes I just wanna run instead of going to the gym.
So I am hoping that I can learn to run properly and keep doing it. My best friends wedding is creeping up and I got a little black dress to fit I better move my butt! ;)

Since I updated my ipod today I thought I might write about some must have songs!
Here they are:

Just Can't Get Enough- Black Eyed Peas
Till the World Ends- Britney Spears
Cinderella Man- Eminem
Motivation- Kelly Rowland ft. Lil Wayne
Sweat- Snoop Dogg and David Guetta
Alors on Danse (remix)- Stromae ft Kanye West
Blow- Ke$ha
Chica Bomb- Dan Balan

On a side note, we went cosmic bowling this past weekend and Im not going to lie..this Black Eyed Peas song was my jam. I rocked at bowling with this song and a few others...then my rocking streak disappeared and I lost...

Friday, April 8, 2011

Green thumb

Flowers from my garden!

I received an awesome gift yesterday. I came home to see a cherry tree planted in my backyard. My grandma and grandpa decided to give my brother and I a cherry tree! My grandpa grew up eating cherries from his families cherry tree...and he even got a cherry tree when he moved into a house once he was married. He though my brother and I needed one as well. It will take roughly 4 years till I will have fruit..but I have decided that in every house I own, there will be a cherry tree!

In other news, my herbs got a new home today...

"The greatest gift of the garden is the restoration of the five senses."
Hanna Rion

Well I better be off...time to get ready for my date with Emma and Allen at the dogpark...then Moxies for dinner..YAHOO!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Future predictions

The class I was working in today were writing about where they see themselves in 20 or 30 or so gave me the idea to try it for myself..

I am going to do 10 years from now..

1. I hope to have a teaching job...not a TOC job, but a full time teaching job.
2. Hopefully I'll have a ring on my finger...and planned an amazing wedding with Mr. A
3. Kids would be good...2 or 3..
4. Hopefully I will have a new vehicle
5. I would like to think that I will have paid some of my debt down, but I wonder if kids..comes more bills? More debt?
6. I would like to go on a couple of trips..
7. I would like to take a photography course
8. Hopefully I will be working towards or done my Special Ed diploma or some kind of further education in regards to teaching
9. Buy rollerblades and figure out the skill...this goes for snowboarding and surfing..

Yes this is me...looking slightly dorky, but I was so excited at this very moment that it was worth it.
 Thats all I can really think of right now...Im sure I have more hopes and goals..but they aren't coming to me right now..

In other news, I got to TOC at my moms school today. It was pretty weird showing up to work with her, but I really enjoyed it. We both had an awkward, excited grin on our faces when I showed up. It's always a nice treat having a very familiar face at work!

Happy Thursday,

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


A while back I watched an Oprah episode where she discussed the documentry Waiting for Superman. It takes a look at the failing education system in the United States.  Well I finally got to watch the actual documentry. Needless to say I just spent the last 15 minutes shedding mutliple tears. It follows a number of families that are trying to get their child into good schools. In many cases they are charter schools or KIPP schools; schools that are getting positive results for its students. The only way many of these students get in is through a lottery draw. If their name is drawn, they get into the school, they get a better chance at a future. For one charter school there was only 110 spaces, 765 people applied (approximately).
I definately recommend watching this movie. It makes the teacher in me want to be that much better.

In addition to Waiting for Superman, I just finished an amazing book called, Little Princes: One Man's Promise to Bring Home the Lost Children of Nepal by Conor Grennan. This book was AMAZING! It was very inspirational to see how the writer, Conor had found a lifes purpose after spending some time volunteering in an orphanage in Nepal. If you have the chance, pick up this book and give it a read!

"Teachers who inspire realize there will always be rocks in the road ahead of us. There will be stumbling blocks or stepping stones; it all depends on how we use them."
Author Unknown


So I'm kinda disappointed..I think I am getting sick again. I have woken up the past few mornings with a sore my nose has been running, and Ive been sneezing. I am hoping to nip it in the butt by increasing my vitamins and fluids. Its Spring..Im not supposed to get sick.

I have some news on my eating and exercise. I have been working very hard at my portions. Yesterday we had some nice turkey sausage with greek salad for dinner. It was the perfect size dinner. I wasn't overly full and when I needed something to eat I had some grapes. On Monday I did a home workout with my Biggest Loser DVD..I did alot of butt can tell I did some exercises! It looks like it may be nice today, so I think I will try to get outside and go for a walk/jog.

I can't remember if I have blogged about this before, but I recently bought some fresh herbs. I cook with parsley alot, and more frequently basil, so I decided to buy some real herbs rather than using dried all the time. I have to go pick up some pots for them today. I love them :)

Stay tuned for:
1. Waiting for Superman- a review
2. The Little Princes- another review
3. A fence and landscaping update

Hope you can get out there and enjoy the sun!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Happy Monday

So my lovely friend, A got me the coolest surprise gift. She got me these Spark Story Starters. Its a deck of cards with different writing prompts for students. A fantastic find for a beginning TOC as well as a useful resource for my reading/writing tutoring students. So I thought it would be fun to post some of the starters...feel free to try it for yourself too!

"If you could give one magic power to your running shoes, what would it be?"
Every time I run in my shoes, I lose weight two times as fast! :)

"If you could train your pet to do any household chore, what would it be? How would you train them"
Taking the laundry basket upstairs. I would need to build some kind of ramp so that Emma could pull the laundry basket upstairs. It could be like a tug-o-war kind of deal.

"If you could ride any animal for an hour, which animal would you choose?
How about for a month?"
Its a toss up between a horse and a camel. An elephant would be fun, but apparently they are a little stinky. I've never been on a camel, and I have only been on a horse a few times. For a month would be tricky as my ass would probably start to get sore on either of them for a that makes it a little tricky.

In other news..we started our fence this weekend. Many of my friend know how frustrated I have been while waiting for a fence for our dog. The fence panels are GORGEOUS and it should be all complete by next weekend. I am also getting our ripped up carpet from dear Emma fixed on Friday. There is something incredibly satisfying about doing things around the house..especially when I have been dying for them to get completed or fixed.

So on the front... I was supposed to go for a run yesterday was a bust. I took Emma for a stroll around the neighbourhood, but it was more exciting to watch the fence go up. I am hoping to go for a good walk with a friend this afternoon if the weather holds out. I did okay with my eating yesterday. We went to a celebration of life yesterday and there were some YUMMY treats there...I only ate 3 cream puffs...which is good for me as I LOVE CREAM PUFFS. We had a pretty healthy dinner last night. Chicken, veggies and I made quinoa for the first time. Have you tried it yet? Its interesting. A different flavor...Allen wasn't overly thrilled with it, but he is getting it again tonight as I made lots last night to cut down on cooking tonight. :)

Hope you have a fantastic Monday!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Lifestyle goals

After a day of eating far too many cookies, I felt it was time to get serious about this whole healthy eating, active lifestyle thing. I have decided by announcing this on my blog, I may have to be held more accountable for my actions or lack there of..
Here are my goals that I hope to accomplish:

1. Cut down on portion sizes.
2. Try to fit in at least 30 minutes of exercise a day
3. Consume less sugar
4. Incorporate more veggies and fruits into my meals
5. Turn the tv and computer off more often
6. Drink more water.
7. Only eat good carbs, and eat them less often. Only one meal a day.
8. Try more meatless main meals

I hope to be able to blog about my efforts. I will try and keep you posted on how much sugar I am consuming. I'm not gonna be posting how much exactly (grams, etc.), but maybe mention how I ate 6 cookies throughout the day (Girl Guide cookies are going to be my undoing). I think I may need to stop baking so much, too.
I will also post about my exercise activities.. I REALLY want to try Yoga..squash and tennis..I also suck a rollerblading, so when money is more in my favor I may buy a pair. I used to have a pair but you can ask my dear friend C, they weren't pretty, they didn't work, ultimately making me look like a scary, sweaty mess.
So there you go...lets hope this works because I can go another day feeling guilty about the cookies..and chicken wings I ate...
Enjoy your weekend!

Friday, April 1, 2011

I'm pregnant with twin boys!

Anyways I just wanted to post this adorable video of twin boys having a conversation.

Hope you have a fantastic Friday!