128 Days of Summer

Adventures from April 28 through September 1 of 2013

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Friday, August 23

I am covered in glitter. Also I am exhausted. Today I volunteered all day at the DAM, which was pretty fun I must admit. It was cool to hang out and help put on their fundraiser community barbecue thing. I worked the craft table (thus the glitter that I will be finding on my body for the next 3 months, make no doubt about it), which was kind of like flashbacks at camp + glitter. I also performed at the event which was super fun. It was nice to be able to perform versus leading others on Sunday. Not that I don’t like leading worship, but I kind of like playing and singing by myself too.

OOOOHHHHHH. I also got to teach some people how to decorate cupcakes with the decorating tips for frosting. That was actually really fun. Cupcakes are marvellous things.


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Friday, June 28

Some days I don’t do much. Other days, I do too much. Like today.

I made a mediocre apple crisp, so bypass that one. Then I went to see Epic with my mom and sister. It was pretty cheesy at times, and it was hilarious at times. It was fairly predictable, and it had a wonderful balance of magic, love, and loss. Overall my expectations were met. It should also be noted I really like children’s movies…

Next, however, came my second venture in the kitchen! I shall show you my images of how this desert thing went down.

Brownies with chocolate and mini PB cup pieces:

Brownie and Pieces

Chocolate Chip Cookie

Cookie Layer

It totally spilled over during cooking, but … now I know better for next time (if there IS a next time).

Finished Desert

Haven’t tried one yet … letting it sit overnight and cool and things, but I’m kind of excited. If it’s bad I’ll be quite upset … but it’s just sugar. How can sugar NOT be good?

OH, and finished books 2 in the series … ONTO THE THIRDS

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Thursday, June 27

In my church two girls graduated grade 8 this week (and then my sister just finished high school). So to celebrate, I spent some good portions of today making cards and special treats for them. I chose to make the cards using calligraphy which required a search and destroy mission to FIND the fountain pens, but it was all worth it in the end I think. Perhaps this time around I’ll actually stick with it long enough to use the ink instead of it drying up in the pen…


And then the treats! Little graduation cap chocolate things. Someone gave me one when I graduated, so we thought we could spread the love with the simple things. And they’re pretty yummy too! (My apologies for the horrible photo quality)

Graduation Caps

Graduation Caps 2

In other news … halfway through Son of the Shadows and Ink Exchange in my double series reading spree. Juliet Marillier still wins, but I’m also biased so …..

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Tuesday, June 25

Today I made brownies. omnomnomnomnomn. Unfortunately (or fortunately?) I quadrupled the recipe instead of tripling it … but upon reflection that might be what my mom does usually anyway. Regardless, it’s always a good day when its a brownie day. Even if I don’t start making them until 8:30 at night. So here is my pan of unbaked brownies. Mmmmmmmmm…


In other news, went to central library to pick up the first book in the series I so skillfully grabbed all the other books in yesterday … but I had started reading a different one while waiting. So now I’m embracing the challenge of reading two series(es?) at the same time. I have picked up the “Wicked Lovely” series from the libraries, which is pretty decent, and I’m reading, yet again, the Sevenwaters Trilogy (and the following 3 sagas) by Juliet Marillier (who is quite potentially my favourite author right now) which is fantastic. I absolutely love it, and you should read them. Especially if you like stories based on Celtic/Irish folklore and the Tuatha Dé Danann like I do. To complete this challenge, I switch between books every few chapters or so.

Why read two series at once? Because reading one book at a time is so yesterday.

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Saturday, June 22

Today was take two in the kitchen. As seasoned pros, we decided to stick with things we knew how to do. So …. I bring you: Blueberry Buttermilk Pancakes with whipped cream, and a Spinach and Red Pepper Egg White Omelet! Not super fancy, but we aren’t hard to please after yesterday’s lemon tart.

We did other things too, but I didn’t take pictures, so we’ll just take this time to look at the picture below instead of listening to me rant about things we can’t see.

Hannah Breakfast

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Friday, June 21

I’m writing this the day after, because I went to a friends house for a sleep over (no, I am NOT too old to enjoy a good sleep over) and thus left my laptop at home, and could not blog about it. So here is your catch up.

We made a delicious pasta dish that was super yummy (cream of pesto with asparagus and corn), but we neglected to take a picture. We failed in that we made about 3 times as much as we needed to feed ourselves…but her family is gone for the week so she can just eat pasta for dinner everyday. NBD

We also tried to make a lemon tart from my cookbook I bought on wednesday. It sounded easy, but because it was a British recipe, we had to convert all the measurements and substitute ingredients becuase they don’t exist in Canada. Like castor sugar and double cream. The shell took us two times to do because it puffed up while baking the first time, and the second time it stuck to the weights holding it down (another pie plate) and there was a hole. Consequently, the filling flooded the whole pan.

It did not look good and was very, very lemony, but when covered in whipped cream, it was actually pretty good.

Takeaway? It was a fun time to spend together in the kitchen, even if it DID end up not turning out completely like we wanted. Nothing like good food (and making good food) to provoke good conversation.

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Thursday, June 20

Rhubarb is one of my favourite things ever. We used to have plants in our backyard when I was little, but ever since we moved to the city we just haven’t had any. And this year I took matters into my own hands and FOUND SOME 😀 (after a little hate session with Red Swiss Chard, which looks a little like rhubarb, the darn stuff).

So, I cleaning out Michael Angelo’s stock, and ended up with 8 cups of rhubarb. Perfect to make two batches of rhubarb slush (picture 1) and one rhubarb-strawberry pie (picture 2). The rhubarb slush is currently in the freezing stage … once it is frozen, you scoop a little out and pour 7-up on it. And it’s delicious. the pie, clearly, is done and cooling. I think I will have some for breakfast.

Rhubarb Slush

Rhubarb Pie

Best part? Rhubarb season has just begun! I CAN MAKE MOAR THINGS AND EAT IT FOR LONGER. I’m quite pleased.

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Thursday, June 6

Today was a rainy, blustery kind of day … so I stayed inside and did what any 20 year old girl (lately I’ve been wondering if I should start referring to myself as woman?) would do – baked cookies. I’ve had a strong hankering for peanut butter cookies for a few days, so I was happy to oblige the hankering, and I must say my family is also pleased with the results of my baking explorations!

When I make peanut butter cookies I always make them in two ways because my grandmothers made them different ways … and thus my parents like different “styles”. I’m partial to parts of both, so I gladly make both kinds. Today I was feeling extra ambitious, so i tried a few other variations as well.

1. Crinkle top/soft cookies rolled in sugar: My dad’s favourite (I’m a sucker for things completely rolled in sugar…)

PB Cookie 1 PB Cookie 2

2. Chewy+crispy/criss cross top cookies with sugar on top: My mother’s favourite (the criss cross thing just always makes me think “peanut butter cookies” …)

PB Cookie 3 PB Cookie 4

3. Hershey’s Drop: They were starting to get stale, and I was inspired by those kisses ones.

PB Cookie 5 PB Cookie 6

4. Surprise: there are M&Ms in there, I promise. and the nest ones have them clearly visible 🙂

PB Cookies 7

Overall, I think it was a rather successful cookie making adventure in the kitchen. Hopefully my family & my guests on Saturday will enjoy them!

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Saturday, May 4

“May the (horse) be with you” – Relient K

May 4th is one of the most absolutely fantastic days because A. it is Star Wars Day, and B. it is my sister’s birthday. Star Wars is honestly one of my favourite things ever. Sort of. Well, I just really like the excuse to talk about it one day of the year :]

My sister’s birthday this year was not a HUGE big to-do, but i DID make a carrot cake form scratch for the first time ever. It was actually way more delicious than I thought it was going to be. However, we only had baby carrots … so shredding the carrots took forever…and my fingers turned orange. Legit.

The highlight of the day, though, was CCF Banquet. It had a special air to it this year, being away from school, and also since I was actually around all year (and on committee). It was so nice to see everyone hanging out and enjoying the times we’ve had … but it was a little bit more than that for me.

The entire year I’ve struggled with seeing how the stuff I’ve done impacted people, how the little things I was spending SO much of my time doing actually effected people, and seeing how I was appreciated in any way. At time I wondered if God was even there, or if I was just doing “too much” for him and therein “losing” him in the business. It didn’t make sense though because I WAS having a quiet time every day, and I WAS trying to get back on track…

Anyhow, this song came up in the worship portion at the end of the night RIGHT after committee got these fantastic mugs…and the combo just really touched me. I can’t explain it other than suddenly, everything was worth it. I realized that yes, even though the things I did were small, they were big in God’s eyes, even if they were invisible to other people, they were BIG in God’s eyes, that the work I put it was, in fact, appreciated, and that not for a moment did God forsake me this year. Never once did he leave my side (song by Merideth Andrews).

CCF mugs
My beautiful reminder of this year.

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Monday, April 29

Today, though its not the first day I’m counting for this blog, is the first day I got to spend at home ALL DAY and do whatever I want … ALL DAY (Except when I had to work). So what did I do? I did what every aspiring, energetic, go-getter, 20-year-old university student on summer break does: I slept in until 8:30, didn’t do anything on my to do list, and made muffins.

As weird as it may sound that my first order of business was to make muffins…baking is a way for me to symbolize having time. I love to bake things (especially when I give them away!), and this was a recipe off weight watchers and I was rather intrigued. SO…..I bring you ….. Apple Oat Muffins!

Apple Oat Muffins


They taste particularly good warmed up in the microwave with a tiny bit of butter melted on top. Since no one else in my family will be eating them I had to put half in the freezer for later.

Today I also went to buy prizes for my piano students! If they practice 5 times a week for a month they get to pick a prize from my prize box…and the box was empty…so I needed prizes. I’m super excited to see how  many of them followed through. It has been one of my favourite things as a teacher to see my students take control of their own learning experience and be involved and want to practice. I’m amazed at their progress since I introduced this reward system.

I don’t particularly have my list of things I want to do this summer nailed down yet … but I fully expect to do that…next week. As the Nestle commercial on Pandora tells me, summer is about road trips with friends, taking my time, and “raising a cone to summer” (aka eating ice cream). Not a bad idea…the ice cream part that is. So until next time, I’m going to go eat a muffin