Homemade Irish Cream liqueur

November 22, 2008 at 12:06 am (Uncategorized)

Anyone else love Bailey’s? Anyone else NOT love the price of Bailey’s? I haven’t bought ready made Bailey’s in over 5 years and this recipe is the reason. Tastes just like the ‘real’ thing and is pretty much goof-proof.

Ingredients:

1 cup light cream

1 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk

1 2/3 cup Canadian Club whiskey (of course Irish whiskey works beautifully but I’m a patriotic Canuck   thusly CC it always is)

1 heaping tsp instant coffee granules

2 tbsp chocolate syrup

1 tsp vanilla

1 tsp almond extract

Directions:

Combine all ingredients and mix well. Bottle and store in fridge until ready to use. This has never lasted in my fridge long enough to go bad (whoops) so I am unable to give you a definite length of time it is safe to drink before expiring. Exercise common sense.

Yield: 4 cups

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How to fireproof your Christmas tree

November 21, 2008 at 11:55 pm (Uncategorized)

That time of year is rolling around… the time of year when some of us set up Christmas trees, some artificial and some not. I’ve had this recipe for the method of fireproofing ‘real’ Christmas trees for some time now and thought sharing might be a good idea.

You will need:

1 litre warm water, divided

1 cup alum

1/2 cup boric acid

2 tbsp borax

medium sized bucket

spray bottle

How to:

Combine 1/2 litre warm water with other ingredients in bucket and stir well until powders dissolve. Add remaining water and mix well. Fill spray bottle and take outside where your tree is waiting, preferably on top of a tarp or plastic sheeting. Generously spray tree, refilling spray bottle as necessary. Be sure to thoroughly coat branches and trunk. Allow to dry completely before decorating. Dispose of any leftover mixture immediately.

If you have pets or small children who are inclined to put pine needles in their mouths (yikes!) or lick the tree then this recipe is not for you, sorry. Safety first people 🙂

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Lost and Found

November 11, 2008 at 12:43 am (About me)

A rather strange thing happened this week. I lost an old friendship and found an old friendship.

The older I get the less inclined I am to tolerate behaviour I at one time found amusing, or tolerable. I’m 31 *choke* and have weathered some truly horrible experiences. I’ve lost everything only to earn it all back, I’ve faced homelessness, serious illness, loss, betrayel, and universal animosity, and I’ve done so with as mmuch grace as I am able to muster. However, with adversity comes change and while I am fairly happy to continue growing and changing, there are those of my acquaintance who would prefer that we all remain frozen in time.

I found myself unable to mollify a woman I was once fairly good friends with. To be honest, our friendship was really one of convenience; we had our daughters at the same time and had both moved from the same small town to the  big city at approximately the same time. It made sense to be friendly and to lean on each other.

However, as time went on I became less inclined to listen to her browbeat me for the decisions I’ve made and even less inclined to tolerate her staggeringly egocentric personality.

I’m sorry to say that this week we ended our friendship officially. Actually, no, I am not sorry. The feeling that swept over me when I realised I would never, ever have to hear her voice again was relief. Relief that it was over, relief that it was done in such a way so as to make reconciliation impossible, relief that I now have one less uneducated know-it-all to justify my decisions to.

Curiously, I found my best friend from high school in the same week and had an amazing conversation with him. Realised, as did he, that time and difficult experiences haven’t soured the bond that we had all those years ago (and oddly, still seem to) and began making plans to get together in the flesh and tear it up just like we used to. Needless to say, the feeling that swept over me after reconnecting transcended relief!

I am filled with joy and feeling so good about both this week and the future.

As to my former friend, well, to be truthful, we haven’t been friends for a long time. I just think neither of us wanted to admit it. I wish for her a life that gives back to her everything she puts out in this world.

Take that whichever way you will.

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*drumroll please* The Inaugural Top Ten!

November 6, 2008 at 6:54 pm (My favourite things)

Sooo… after yet another delightfully wasted afternoon perusing YouTube, checking out some of my favourite fight clips, it occurred to me that there are some REALLY kick-ass film scraps out there!

Thought I would share them here, in no particular order, from the last 25 years or so.

Yeah, I’m a geek with no life. Deal.

10. Highlander (1986)~ Connor McLeod vs The Kurgen

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_2p0TEpSysk

The series was loads of fun and goodness knows Adrian Paul was a treat to watch, but IMHO the franchise was at its best with Clancy Brown as the baddest of the bad: The Kurgen!

9. Romeo Must Die (2000) The Football Fight

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ygWFISePdjo

Jet Li vs Isaiah Washington, Anthony Anderson and Co.? Freakin’ awesome! There are so many great fight scenes in this film but this one is my favourite.

8. Fight Club (1999) Edward Norton vs himself

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fnlm3-tadeI

Edward Norton beats the crap out of himself! Have I mentioned that I love this man?

7. Kill Bill vol 1 (2003) GoGo Yubari vs The Bride

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZUURwgk_hJg

While this movie is LOADED with some seriously kick ass fight sequences, I had to go with this one for my fave of the bunch. I have a real fondness for Chiaki Kuriyama and watching her and Uma duke it out is sheer bliss for me.  Does that make me disturbed?

6. True Romance (1993) Alabama vs the Hitman

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X55lxtFJ9_4

Patricia Arquette and James Gandolfini mixing it up. Classic.

5. The Matrix Reloaded (2003) Neo vs The Smiths

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pQ0T59qKK-s

Anyone who knows me knows I am NOT a fan of The Matrix franchise. Didn’t live up to the hype for me at all. However, this fight is pretty damned good, and since I try not to discriminate, it’s worthy of a place on my list. GoGo could kick the shit out of them all though. Just sayin’

4. Ultraviolet (2006) Violet vs a bunch of guys in the library

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tRMbX8Henks

Who woulda thought back in the days of Return to the Blue Lagoon that Milla would end up being such a consummate ass-kicker?

3. Resident Evil (2002) Alice vs the dogs

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LQG2buCXigM

See! Milla again!

2. Serenity (2005) River Tam bar fight

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=81YNfpyXeMo

Summer Glau. Is there really anything else I need to say? Hell, Summer Glau working with Joss Whedon! Every geek’s wet dream, LOL!

1. Star Wars Episode II (2002) Obi-Wan, Anakin, Yoda vs Dooku

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3UQ-pHa87Gc

THE best of the best right here! I may have said no particular order, but this one is, and always will be, number one with me.

Enjoy!

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I Miss Veronica Mars…

September 23, 2008 at 9:43 pm (Uncategorized)

Does anyone else? 

Am I the only one tickled pink to see Kristen Bell and Francis Capra on Heroes (SQUEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!) yet dragging out the VM dvds due to some serious Good Show withdrawel? 

I have no Battleslut Galacticock (thank you Kevin Smith for lodging that in my brain and making it IMPOSSIBLE for me to ever refer to the current Best Show In The World by its actual name) until early next year and I think if I go back to watch Six and Baltar do the nasty or President Roslin evolve into some psychotic dictator skank from hell one more time my eyeballs will burn out and I will be reduced to gibbering and watching The Hills. Okay, I’ve already watched The Hills, but I didn’t enjoy it! It didn’t mean anything!

Where oh where has the good tv gone?

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“You chose to have kids, YOU take care of ’em!”

September 17, 2008 at 3:51 pm (Rant)

Aaaaah… nothing guaranteed to get me fired up first thing in the morning like a bunch of comments on the CBC website! 

I suppose the furor began over Jack Layton’s proposed expansion of subsidized daycare slots should the NDP get into power in our forthcoming election. There’s the usual old fart rhetoric of ‘in my day…’ and the young pup attitude of ‘I don’t have kids why should I pay for them’ peppered with a few choice comments from people who actually HAVE children. 

It’s rather entertaining… did y’all know that the majority of low income parents spend their days smoking pot and purchasing 50 inch plasma televisions? Sure is news to me; where do I sign up? After all, having been all over the spectrum in terms of my income bracket I’d say I have a fairly good understanding of how the average low income parent spends whatever money is on hand. I had absolutely no idea that instead of making sure I always have milk, fresh produce, bread, decent clothes for my kids, etc I should fall in line with my peers and sit back, smoke dope, and enjoy my huge tv!

Reality check people: while there are always those who abuse the system and manage to find ways to profit off our society, for every 1 of these there are 100 who are working their asses off to provide the best life possible for their families. And yeah, a single parent and one child constitutes a family. The Conservative party did one hell of a good job pulling the wool over the eyes of so many Canadians in the last election with their pitiful $100 monthly payoff that was supposed to go towards subsidizing daycare costs. I can say with PRIDE that I saw that bullshit for what it is, namely an incredible waste of resources and an insult to those of us who actually needed daycare. 

Imagine what $1200 annually per child under 6 could’ve done for established daycare centres! Imagine how many people who’ve been turned away by childcare providers simply because they don’t have the funds to provide space for an additional child could’ve continued working and contributing to our economy! Imagine how many single parents could’ve gone to college or university and thusly worked towards a career that would not only support a family (and well) but would also contribute to society! 

It’s easier to just throw money at the voters; less effort involved and certainly, that is what the Conservative party is ALL about. 

I know some of my readers vote Conservative, and I am truly sorry for it, as in my opinion, to vote Conservative is to vote lazy these days. It wasn’t always this way, there was a time when that party had some fantastic ideals and the morality to stand by their ideals, but those days are done.

But anyway, back to the whole childcare debacle. 

I think what has me so fired up is the attitude from the fossils-oh, excuse me, older folk- that in their day the mommy took care of the kids while the daddy went to work and this produced shining examples of humanity who are productive, wonderful members of society.

Okaaaaaaay.

Sure.

You betcha!

What I want to know is why these great examples of Canadian citizens didn’t instill some sense of personal responsibility in so many of their children (well, honestly, their sons more than anyone else)! I mean, if Mommy did such a bang-up job of raising you guys, why didn’t YOU teach YOUR children to provide for THEIR children once they’ve decided to take off and ‘find themselves’ whilst leaving their exes to provide all the emotional and financial support. Your generation did a SHIT job of raising their children; the ridiculous number of deadbeat dads screwing around is a testament to THAT. Hell, the number of young moms who dump their kids off with their parents so they can run around and have their supposed ‘fun’ is staggering as well. 

And while I’m commenting on the older generation, might I add that in a few years, when you’re rotting away in some government-funded care facility and having your arse wiped and your spittle mopped up by some care provider, you’re going to be VERY grateful for the subsidized daycare that allowed that worker’s parents to make a living and do more than sit on welfare for five years. 

But you know… you’re not going to be MY senior. I sure as hell had nothing to do with you growing old, and those of you who chose to be childless aren’t going to have grown children to care for you, visit you, love you, etc. You’re going to have strangers cleaning up your shit and piss and those strangers will be paid for with MY tax dollars. The difference between people like me and people like you is that I believe my tax dollars SHOULD go to caring for seniors (even ones I want no part of). 

Because that’s part of living in a society. It’s not supposed to be about ‘me’ it’s supposed to be about ‘community’.

I know, that makes me Socialist, right? 

Heck, call me that, call me a Commie; I could care less, as long as you don’t call me a Conservative!

Rant over.

And for the record, not every senior is a fossil; only the ones who talk out of their asses.

My grandma is a VERY cool senior; too bad there aren’t more like her. When the time comes I will wipe whatever of hers need wiping.

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Thoughts on the Sarah Palin theories regarding her son Trig

September 10, 2008 at 12:03 am (Rant)

I’ve been doing lots of reading lately; finding myself with child-free time has given me the opportunity to relax a bit and catch up on some authors I previously didn’t have much time to enjoy. 

Curiously, this has spilled over onto my computer time and I find myself perusing blog after blog and article after article. Today I read about the rumours and innuendos swirling around Governor Sarah Palin and the birth of her fifth child.

Now, right off the bat let me make it very clear that I am about to express my OPINION, which is certainly not an expert one. I also must stress the fact that I am a libertarian who is very happy to be Canadian and thusly excused from having to vote for Obama or McCain, as I feel neither should be ‘Leader of the Free World’. If only Michelle Obama were the one who would be running things…

Anyway, back on track here. 

I honestly am more than a bit perturbed by all the rumours flying around that Trig Palin is Gov. Palin’s grandchild. Not because I think that has any bearing on whether or not she’s qualified to be VP, but because it’s REALLY nobody’s business whether or not she is his biological mother. She’s his mother, end of story. Even if her daughter gave birth to him, she is his mother. Leave it be, folks, seriously! Nope, what I find perturbing about the whole thing is the fact that if Gov. Palin IS this child’s biological mother, she apparently endangered this baby’s life by giving a flippin’ speech AFTER her water broke and then proceeded to board a plane to head back home to give birth.

Um… exqueese me? Who in her right mind would do this? ESPECIALLY a pro-life crusader! I mean, the woman had given birth four times before, so she KNEW that in order to prevent infection and do her very best for that baby it was imperative she get her beauty queen ass to the nearest hospital right away. That’s what they tell us blue-collar mommies in prenatal; one would assume that her high priced care provider would have done the same.

So, I guess what I’m getting at is this: what kind of woman would act with such blatant disregard for the health and LIFE of her unborn child? The kind of woman who could be President if, gods forbid, anything were to happen to McCain whilst in office? A woman with that kind of ‘morality’? If the American public are foolish enough to select McCain and Palin to lead their country then I truly weep for their future.

Cuz it most certainly won’t be a bright one.

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Chicken Tortilla Soup s/w Homestyle Mexican Cornbread

September 8, 2008 at 4:54 pm (Uncategorized)

Now that we’re heading into fall I’m definitely enjoying playing around with different soup recipes. Since I’m in the minority it seems when it comes to the glory and the passion that is my cream of onion and roasted garlic soup (good thing I’m single I suppose, heehee) I decided to play around with an old favourite and see if I could make it into something not only I, but the kids would love too. 

This was the result:

So, without further ado, allow me to debut my hominy-free Chicken Tortilla Soup s/w Homestyle Mexican Cornbread.

Yum. And the kids agree. WOOT!

Ingredients:

3 boneless chicken breast halves, cooked and chopped (you can broil em, boil em, or fry em)

1 onion, chopped

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 tbsp olive oil

1.5 tbsp chili powder

1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes

2 C chicken broth (I like low sodium but to each her own)

1 1/4 C water

2 C corn (if using canned please drain well)

1 4 oz can green chiles, chopped

1 15 oz can black beans, drained

1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

Garnish:

1 avocado, peeled and cubed

green onion, chopped

crushed tortilla chips (this is a great way to use up the mangled bits at the bottom of the bag)

shredded Jack/Cheddar cheese blend

sour cream

 

Instructions:

In medium stock pot, heat oil and saute onion and garlic until soft. Stir in chili powder, tomatoes, broth and water. Bring to a boil and simmer 10-15 minutes. Stir in corn, chiles, beans, cilantro, and chicken; simmer for 20-30 minutes, adding additional water or broth if necessary.

Ladle into bowls and garnish with tortilla chips, cheese, green onion, avocado, and sour cream. Serve with cornbread (recipe below).

Makes 8 servings 

 

Homestyle Mexican Cornbread

Ingredients:

1 C self-rising cornmeal

1/2 C all purpose flour

2 C shredded Jack/Cheddar cheese blend

1 onion, chopped

1 green pepper, chopped

1 4 oz can green chiles, chopped

2 eggs, beaten

1 8oz can creamed corn

1/4 C milk

 

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350 F.  Lightly grease 9×9 baking pan. 

In large bowl mix together cornmeal, flour, cheese, onion, green pepper, and chiles. Stir in eggs, milk, and creamed corn, mixing well to form a nice batter. 

Pour into prepared pan and bake in preheated oven for 1 hour, or until inserted toothpick comes out clean.

Best served warm.

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Letting go

September 8, 2008 at 4:16 pm (My family)

So the day finally came. The day that signaled the end of an era for me, the day that I truly have been contemplating with an air of both excitement and dread. 

My baby started kindergarten last week. His sister goes to the ‘big kid school’ in the neighbouring town and really couldn’t give two figs about school anymore. The pretty pencils and glittery Hannah Montana binders just aren’t enough of an incentive to get her psyched for class these days. I would venture to guess that until she hits high school it’s going to be very dull going for her, as it was for me. 

The Beast on the other hand…

Oh my.

Oh my oh my oh my. He’s been ready for this for a WHILE now and nothing could possibly thrill him more (well, almost nothing; one must never underestimate the power of the upcoming Fall Fair) than heading off to school to make new friends and have new adventures.

Adventures that do not include ME. And not only that, but my influence will no longer be the dominant one in his life. From now on there’s ‘my teacher says’ and ‘Owen says’ etc to look forward to. Every day he’s got a new best friend and every day he’s challenging my previously unchallenged knowledge in the realm of ‘why things are’.

This is a good thing; I know the apron strings need to be cut and I know that the odd combination of freedom and structure are inherently good for my boy. Still, it’s more than a bit sad for me to drop him off at school in the afternoons, wave goodbye, and then head home. 

I am now on my own for four hours, four days a week. I have not been on my own at ALL (well, when not working anyway) for ten years. TEN YEARS! What on earth am I going to do with myself? I suppose I could try to take in some of the local culture on my afternoons off *snort*.

Oh, wait, that’s right… my options are limited to beer and haying. Yeah. I think not. Unless those cowboys from Wyoming roll back into town there’s not a whole heck of a lot here to catch my interest. 

So until something better comes along I suspect I’ll continue my pleasant (if somewhat dull at times) routine of working on recipes, my writing, and waiting for the kids to come tumbling through the front door just before 4 PM. 

And the fact that even when he’s not here I swear I can still hear my Beastie crashing through the house, well, it should worry me, but it doesn’t yet.

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Things that make you go…WTF?!?!

August 5, 2008 at 8:42 pm (Rant)

Not really sure there are enough words in the English language to describe how incredibly asinine certain judges in Russia are. 

What bothered me equally were comments like this: “Working-class men get raped every day when they go to work at jobs that overwork them, pay them less and less for more and more work, abuse them, degrade them and rob them of any power, dignity they may have once had. Men are getting raped everyday – it’s just in a different, though no less significant way.”~posted by Chavezo8

and this: “I’m moving to Russia!”~posted by kimmie69

Are we de-evolving here?

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