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Why I Still Love To Thrift Shop!!

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Here are some reasons I love to thrift, anyone who is a thrifter will understand and hopefully some future thrifters will be inspired.

  1. I am a thrifter from my childhood and there is nothing like walking into a thrift store feeling the anticipation of the next great find.  Even after years of thrifting, I still feel that buzz of excitement in finding a great piece or pieces.
  2. The knowledge that I can find unique pieces that not everyone would have or even wear is always exciting to me.
  3. The vintage pieces are worth the hunt.
  4. The quality of the fabric and construction of vintage pieces.
  5. Saving wonderful pieces from the landfill.
  6. The people I meet in the thrift shops.
  7. The money I save, even though the prices at thrift stores have gone up way too much
  8. The staff at the stores that I frequent.
  9. Blogging about my thrift finds.
  10. Finding things that I can refashion.

What are your favourite things about thrift shopping?  I would love to hear from you.  Cheers, Michele

More Favourite Books!! The Joe Ledger Series by Jonathan Maberry!

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Jonathan Maberry writes some of my favourite zombie books and he also writes comics and other fiction.  I love his Joe Ledger books about a special agent in a secret government organization who takes on the ultimate bad guys, apocalyptic scenarios and zombies as well.  I highly recommend this series as great escapist reads.

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They are full of action, monsters, terrible bad guys and apocalyptic warnings.  Joe Ledger is the ultimate bad good guy who has lots of dark secrets and rough edges.  They are a great summer or anytime read.  Happy reading, Cheers, Michele

Peanut Butter Granola!! Gluten-Free And Yummy!

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This peanut butter granola recipe is my own version of several other recipes cobbled together and is being posted on my blog at the request of my daughter Katie’s boyfriend Chris.  The main recipe source is from www.breakfastdramaqueen.com so kudos to that blogger for a great starting recipe.  I have added more ingredients because I like my granola with lots of different flavours.

Image courtesy of www.breakfastdramaqueen.com
Image courtesy of www.breakfastdramaqueen.com

Peanut Butter Granola

Dry Ingredients:

4 cups rolled oats (gluten-free if required)

1/2 cup pumpkin seeds

1/2 cup sunflower seeds

1/2 cup sliced almonds

1/2 cup shredded coconut

3 Tbsps flax seeds or flax-seed meal

3 Tbsp chia seeds

1/4 cup hemp seeds

You can add dried fruit, but add it together with the finished baked granola so that the fruit doesn’t burn.

Wet Ingredients:

1 cup peanut butter

1/2 cup maple syrup

2 Tbsps coconut oil

2 tsps vanilla

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.  Line 2 baking pans with parchment paper.  Mix all dry ingredients well in a large bowl.  In a large microwave proof dish or 2 cup glass measuring cup add all wet ingredients.  Microwave on high for 1 – 1 1/2 minutes til liquid.  Stir together well before pouring over dry ingredients.  Stir until all ingredients are well mixed.  Divide mixture between the two pans and spread out evenly.  Place in oven and bake for 40-50 minutes depending on how brown you want your granola.  Rotate the pans every so often to allow to bake evenly.  Remove from oven and allow to cool completely before storing in an air tight container.  Serve with yogurt and fresh fruit for either a delicious breakfast or dessert.  It also makes a great topping for a fruit crumble.

I hope you try this granola out, it is super easy and delicious and much more healthy than the store-bought cereals.  Cheers, Michele

NYX Butter Gloss Lipcolour Collection Review!!

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My daughter Kate loves these NYX Butter Gloss lip colours.  They come in two types, the basic Butter Glosses and the Intense Butter Glosses.  The basic Butter Glosses are more sheer and obviously the Intense ones are more pigmented. She only has a few of each type, but here are the ones she likes and has kept.

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Here are the basic Butter Glosses from left to right, Eclair, Meringue, Tiramisu, Vanilla Cream Pie and Angel Food Cake.

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Here are the swatches again with the same order as above from left to right in the top left hand pictures and then following down top to bottom, left to right for the lip swatches.

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The Intense Butter Glosses from left to right are Toasted Marshmallow, Chocolate Crepe and Tres Leches.

 

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Here are the swatches again from left to right (top left picture), top to bottom, left to right on the lips.

They all smell like candy or cake and are very nice in their colour payoff and finish.  Easy to remove, not staining or sticky.  you should try them out.  Cheers, Michele

Aloo Gobi!! Cauliflower And Potato Curry!

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I have been craving Aloo Gobi which is a simple vegetable curry for a while now and so I finally bit the bullet and made some.  It is so yummy and comforting.  I got new potatoes and a cauliflower on the discount table at my local fruit and veg store so this is a very cheap meal.  You can add meat or chickpeas to the recipe to make it a whole meal, but we are having it with tandoori spice rubbed chicken breasts off the BBQ!  Yummy.  Serve it with rice and naan bread if you have it and you have a super simple supper.  Hope you try it.

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Aloo Gobi

1 small head of cauliflower cut into small flowerettes

2 pounds of potatoes cut into bite size pieces

1 large bunch of fresh cilantro, leaves and stems separated and finely chopped

1 tbsps of vegetable oil

2 onions cut into small pieces

3 large cloves of garlic finely minced

2 inch piece of ginger finely minced

3 small hot chilis finely minced

2 tsps of tumeric

2 tsps of cumin

2 tsps ground coriander seed

1 tsp curry powder

1 tsp salt

1 large 16 oz tin of crushed tomatoes

2-3 cups of water, vegetable or chicken stock

2 cups frozen peas

In a large pot heat oil over medium heat.  Add the onions and cook until translucent.  Then add chilis, garlic, ginger and the finely minced stems of the cilantro.  Stir til slightly cooked.  Add potatoes and cauliflower, spices and salt and stir well to coat the vegetables.  Add can of tomatoes.  Then cover the vegetables with as much stock or water as it takes to just cover.  Simmer over medium  to low heat for 30 minutes. Check the potatoes and cauliflower and add the frozen peas.  Cook for another 30 minutes until liquid reduces.  This may take longer depending on the size of your pot.  Once ready sprinkle with the chopped cilantro leaves and serve with steamed rice.  Perfect delicious and easy vegetarian meal or side dish. But like I said, you can add chicken or chickpeas to add some protein.  Hope you try it.  Cheers, Michele

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The Savoy Brasserie Ottawa!! Restaurant Review!

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For my birthday on Saturday we went to the Savoy Brasserie here in Ottawa to celebrate.  I love this restaurant very much, the food is always stellar, the service is very good and I love the atmosphere.  So I thought I would review our latest visit to this wonderful place.

My husband Will, our daughter Katie and her boyfriend Chris went with me to celebrate and so the company was terrific to begin with.We were seated by the window so we could do some people watching, which reminds me of our time in Europe and how much fun people watching is while enjoying delicious food.  We enjoyed some delicious cocktails while we waited for our food.

I had already checked out the menu on-line to figure out my main dish, but I already had a good idea what I wanted because the type of dish I wanted is one of my favourite ways to eat.

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We ordered 40 raw oysters and 20 large prawns to share for starters.  Will ordered the moules and frites (mussels with French fries and garlic aioli) in a beer, blue cheese and lardons sauce.  He was very nice and shared with me.  Katie ordered the vegetable tartar and a risotto.  Chris ordered the deconstructed grilled Caesar salad.

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I got a chaucutarie which had smoked duck, house made pate and foie gras.  It was so amazingly yummy.  After all that terrific food we were too full for dessert, but I can tell you from previous experience that the desserts are decadent and delicious.

We all enjoyed our dinner very much, the service was excellent and the atmosphere was delightful, not too noisy that you couldn’t have a great conversation over food.  It is an expensive restaurant, but you certainly get what you pay for, the quality of the food is very good as is the service.  Certainly a special occasion type of place.  But if you go during Westboro (the name of the neighbourhood that the Savoy is in) hour, oysters and prawns are only $1 each from 3:30 til closing every day.  So if you are into oysters and prawns and other appetizers, with a beer included, it is a reasonable and delicious meal option.

If you live in the Ottawa area, I definitely recommend that you try this restaurant out.  I give it 5 stars!!  Cheers, Michele

Getting To Know My Readers!! A Little Q & A!

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Image courtesy of www.vera-natura.com

I love seeing that people from around the world read my blog.  So I thought I would put out a little questionnaire with my answers right along side.  I would love it if you would take the time to answer and reply to any or all of them.  That way I can get to know you better and tailor my writing to your interests. That would be fantastic! So here goes.

  1. Where d0 you live?   Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
  2. What are your favourite posts?  The refashions from unusual thrifted finds; that perfect much sought after thrift find; a successful refashion!
  3. What would you like to see more of on this blog?  More of the continuing fantastic reading of my posts and comments from my wonderful readers!
  4. What are your 5 favourite places to visit?  Seville, Spain; Brugges, Belgium; Paris, France; Anywhere in Italy; Munich, Germany.
  5. What was the last country you visited?  Jamaica
  6. What is your 5 favourite hobbies?  Thrift shopping, refashioning, sewing, working on my blog and trying new recipes and tailoring them to my dietary requirements.
  7. Dogs or cats?  Dogs
  8. Favourite paid job that you have had?  Forensic autopsy technician
  9. Languages you speak even a little or a lot?  English, German, French, Italian, Turkish, Greek (only swear words)
  10. Favourite book, movie and music genre?  Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen; Love Actually; Eighties music.

So these are just a few questions I thought I would ask.  I would love it if you had thought of your own questions to ask me and I will gladly reply.  I would love to hear from you.  Thanks for taking the time to read my blog and my posts.  Cheers, Michele