Friday, January 30, 2015

New Digs!!!

Hey Y'all,

Come visit me at my new site and bookmark it for future reads!!: 

(We're still working the design, but I am too excited to keep it under wraps!)

Look forward to hearing from you there,


Friday, January 23, 2015


"Charles Spurgeon once remarked that "the best style of prayer is that which cannot be called anything else but a cry." Isn't that what God invites us to do all through the bible?

"Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know"(Jer.33:3)

God is not aloof. He is not disconnected. He says continually through the centuries, "I'll help you, I really will. When you don't know where to turn, then turn to me. When you're ready to throw up your hands - throw them up to me. Put your voice behind them too,  and I'll come and help you."

~Excerpt from Jim Cymbala's Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire~

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Caramelized peaches with fresh rosemary...

Is what we haven't been eating lately. Unless the peaches are canned and the rosemary's been freeze dried. 

What I'm trying to say is, the budget is going very well .. heh. Perhaps a little too well. The pantry's been hit hard, and what used to be full shelves are now starting to look a lot like the Canadian Target's shelves. (ouch...too soon?) The fridge lights now penetrate to the lowest shelf, no longer darkened by a full top shelf of half full condiment jars. Said jars are being emptied and used in my frugal yet tasty recipes! I was also able to use my rarely touched cornmeal for some delicious blueberry cornmeal muffins...yum-o.

I have been relying heavily upon dear ol' Pinterest to give some creative recipes to percolate through my meal planning mind. I'm proud to say we ate out only twice this month, and both were within our dining budget. Boo-ya baby, I do believe that may be a record at the fifty!

The best part is that most of the meals have been slow cooker meals, which are my set-it and forget-it days...pure joy my friends. 

We've had a pretty wide variety of meals including: Shanghai Noodles, Beef Stroganoff, Chicken Alfredo, Chicken Rice soup, Fajitas, and one of my personal favs - breakfast for dinner :) There's been enough leftovers for The Hubs lunch nearly every day...except for the breakfast for dinner night...cold scrambled eggs...*shiver*

Even the old wrinkly apples were used up this month...Oatmeal apple cinnamon muffins were a highly prized snack :) 

Peels n' all ...

Friday, January 16, 2015

Foto Fridays on the Fifty..

Thought I'd start up a recurring theme here on the fifty, Foto Friday.

(Does it annoy you that I chose 'foto' rather than photo? heh. Well, it's a throwback to my Oma who has heavy dutch accent, I can just picture her saying ' Oh vat a lovely foto!' )

Heres a picture from our backyard on a windy, sunny day. These are our 'hammock' trees, planted in a triangle with hopes that one day we'll be able to hang a couple hammocks from them :)

There is beauty in this harsh season, we just have to look a little harder to see it!

Friday, January 9, 2015

Ruby and the Amaryllis..


     It was a regular afternoon, I was happily chatting away the hour with a fellow mom, sipping coffee and enjoying a talk about things that interest people over 3 feet tall:) Our children were playing, three of which I could see through the big picture window in the living room, as they bounced away on the trampoline.
I took a lasting sip from my vanilla hazelnut blend, and peered over my mug rim...and that's when I saw it...Saw him... through the window on the back lawn nearing the children.
He had an awkward gait, slow and laboured, more of a saunter - with a eyes quickly fired a message to my brain, which sent a message to my legs to 'GET UP!'. Quickly realizing this wasn't a familiar fellow...but a stranger, I ran to the back door as my friend looked on wondering what could possibly make me get up from our delightful conversation so abruptly.  I opened the door and instantly knew, this guy was sick.
I turned back to my friend and said 'It's a racoon, definitely sick, either distemper or rabies', and I was off, to the garage I flew to grab the only thing I could think of that would keep a distance between me and the creature, and still pack a punch if need be.
A golf club.
Ya, you read that right ..unfortunately.

I pulled that putter out of the golf bag like it was my samurai, my adrenaline was pumping, I ran and practised a few slashes in the air as if I were a ninja. I came around the house with my warrior cry, "HIIIIIYYYAAAA!!!!"...hoping to distract the masked intruder away from the trampoline.

As my eyes met the scene in front of me, I faltered a bit, losing my initial boldness and replacing it with a disbelief. He had already made it to the children, drawn to the laughter in his zombie like state he was reaching up to them from beneath the black trampoline mat with his freaky human like hands, and was nearly licking their toes.
By this point, my girl was beside herself in fear, with her brother and his friend holding her back from scrambling out of the zippered net, thinking the creature may seize her ankles. I ran towards them shouting, gaining speed and waving my death instrument and that's when his beady little black eyes met mine. The drums began to pound (in my head) ... and I went straight for him.

(As an aside in this moment, I had a mental exchange with myself likened to Mel Gibsons Freedom speech in Braveheart...(all changes to the speech my own...))
"Aye, fight and you may die, Leanne. Run, and you'll live... at least a while. And dying in your bed, many years from now, would you be willin' to trade ALL the days, from this day to that, for one chance, just one chance, to come back here and tell this coon that they he may take my life, but he'll never take... MY FREEDOM!" 
As I ran towards him from one corner of the backyard, I noticed that my friend had come onto the back porch armed with what she thought constituted a death apple. Ya, you read that right, unfortunately. 

She whipped that apple with all her might, her cheeks rippling with the force of chucking that red gala. It was of no use, he had his gaze locked onto me and my shiny putter and was approaching with intensity in his trance like state. At first I invited the chase, as I knew it was leading him away from the poor scarred children, but soon I realized it was on .. like donkey kong. He came at me with enthusiasm...each swipe of my samurai bringing more interest. Within 30 seconds I could handle it no longer, his creepy little human like hands were stepping too quickly towards me. I completely chickened out and hightailed it back to the garage as soon as I saw that the kids had scrambled out of the trampoline to the back porch. I ran and screamed like the princess I became, I whirled my samurai club around and around behind me, hoping to putt his head off. 
Once indoors, I locked the door...because you know...creepy human hands and all.

I held my poor shaking daughter in my arms while I called grandpa to save the day. The true farmer ninja came wielding his samurai of the heavy shovel variety, and saved the day. 
Needless, to say request for a BB gun seems slightly more logical now doesn't it?! (By the way, I did receive said gun for Christmas, and suffice to say I think it will make for a better deterrent than my 'samurai' ;) 

Finally, because I know you're thinking how cute raccoons are, and because those previous pictures don't give reasonable doubt as to their true nature....I leave you with this. 

You're Welcome.

Monday, January 5, 2015


There's nothin' like a freshly born year to make me fill my brain with all kinds of new beginnings. Already there are new habits developing. 5 Days in and I've cracked the lid on a couple new plans. The budget has been re-vamped and we've drawn in a few notches on the ol' budget belt. There are times when I quite enjoy being cheap, and there are times when I quite despise it. January 1st brings a sweet new feeling of el cheapo to life and I have no problem saying 'uh uh' to fast food and frills. (that's exactly why we shop at no frills..heh)

I also have a new zeal for re-vamping the extra padding on my body...I wish it were as easy as scribbling down a few numbers, like the budget...but alas, this new beginning involves hard work. So, the children and I are now members of a homeschooling program at the YMCA that gets us moving. (this Y just happens to be 10 mins away from us...and we live in the country, so it's pretty fantastic!!) The kids get to play sports, while their moms walk the track indoors then we go swimming. AND the best part is I don't need a pricey membership to go! It was a flat rate that was quite 'cheap' I might add :)

My new meal plan is keeping me in the kitchen a little more, but so far so good, the hubs and kids are enjoying my creative food concoctions, and I've stayed well within my new 'Crazy Frugal' grocery budget. Exciting!!

Wish me luck on this new beginning would ya? Let me know what you've changed for 2015!