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Drunken Beans, Foil Packet BBQ’ed Honey Salmon, Mushroom and Pepper Rice Pilaf, Vegetable Packet

Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.

Albert Einstein

I love Children's Festival!

When we first moved to Penticton I joined the Board of Directors. It was a gong show lol. Seriously though it was... difficult. Maybe because I was a newbie. Maybe because the board had been together for many years and new ideas were, well, new.

I left my position at the end of the year and did not return for my second term. In fact no one did. Last years' Festival was cancelled. Even though we missed it dearly, it proved to me that what I felt was correct.

This year it was back! And it was pretty great! HOWEVER, usually we do the Saturday family pass and this year HBear had camp :(

So I did it. I taught her how to play hooky!

We met Grandma, Grandpa, Auntie and Baby J at the grounds and PLAYED!

We saw Fred Penner! I LOVE Fred Penner! I loved Fred Penner's Place. In the opening sequence he went through a log and that may have been the beginning for me. The beginning of my dream, of having my secret spot lol. I loved The Secret Garden and The Bridge to Terabithia, books and shows about secret places. I used to pretend my hideout was in my closet. In my mind I went through a log to get there LOL


When I was pregnant with HBear I got him to sign The Cat Came Back coloring book for her :) When I told him this, he said I was OLD!!! LOL


SBean 1st Mini Donut!

On Saturday HBear had her 1st sleepaway camp. OMG all night I thought about a movie I watched when I was younger.... Sleepaway Camp part 3. *shiver* She did GREAT!

After we dropped off the girls, SBean and I went to meet my BC Besty. She was putting on a bottle drive for a little girl in the community. Chloe. Chloe is a 3 year old little girl that has been diagnosed with a rare form of cancer. Her chemo is not working. The community has really pulled together to help her parents with the extra costs of travel between here and Vancouver. Her brother goes to school with my Besty's daughter. He is 6.

My BC Besty working hard!
After we dropped off our bottles I went up to see Mom.

This next little bit is going to be hard. The past 11 months have been hard but now I can remember everything that happened and put a date to it. You know what I mean? Last year on this day Mom went into the hospital. I look around and remember the weather, the Mumford and sons concert, Mom finding out the cancer returned... it all happened last week. A year ago last week was the beginning of her end. I try so hard not to think of it this way. But I find myself constantly doing it.

That night we had my in-law's over for dinner! We set up the new deck (pictures to come) that afternoon and were having BBQ ribs, corn on the cob, Caesar salad and beans. I invited HBear's besty's mommy too :). It was a fun night, even though HBear wasn't there :(   

Drunken Beans
Adapted from Gimme Some Oven

4 pieces (uncooked) bacon, diced
1/2 sweet onion, finely diced
1 teaspoon chili flakes
4 garlic cloves, pressed
1 (12-ounce) dark beer
2 cans (family size) beans in tomato sauce
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Cook bacon in a pan over medium-high heat until crispy, stirring occasionally. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon and transfer to a separate plate. Set aside.

Meanwhile, reserve 1 tablespoon of bacon grease in the sauté pan, discarding the extra. Add the onion and chili flakes, and sauté for 5 minutes or until the onion is soft and translucent.

Add the garlic, and sauté for an additional 1-2 minutes until fragrant. Add the beer, beans, brown sugar, oregano, chili powder, salt and cumin, and stir to combine.

Continue cooking until the beans reach a simmer. Then reduce heat to medium-low, and continue simmering uncovered for about 15 minutes.

When ready to serve, stir in the lime juice. Then serve the beans topped with fresh cilantro.

On Sunday morning we picked HBear up! I missed her every second. She has stayed at Grandpa and Grandma's before but camp? 

OMG I thought of the creepy noises she would hear. The shadows in an unfamiliar cottage dorm room. If she would wake up and be too scared to go outside to the bathroom... in the dark... with cougars (we got notice of 2 animal attacks the week before).

I was so relieved to see her happy and all camp dusty dirty the next morning!

Watching the last of the fire burn out with her besty :)
That afternoon I put on The Parent Trap (the Hayley Mills version)...

Maybe I should have picked the Lindsay Lohan version LOL

After a catnap we went to Grandma and Grandpa's for Auntie's birthday dinner :)

Fascinated with Aunty's bubbles!

Yesterday was the strike. Have you heard BC teachers are on rotating strike. What does that mean you ask? 

I have no freaking clue.

Seriously, I have asked the principal, HBear's teacher. I have Googled it, I watch Facebook groups AND I read the news.

Still NO idea! Do we have school on Friday? dunn-o :(

So with Monday off, we painted HBear's cardboard castle. We have been doing it for a year. It is very detailed and she loves switching colors lol. We finished the castle and the roof! Now we just have the courtyard... it's true. 

And then we said bye bye to Auntie and Baby J :(

Today I got HBear ready and off to school. Then SBean and I went to the bank to do the deposits. Then we drove to Summerland to take pictures of our new HydroPole!!! 

Then we quickly ran to the market and to T-Bones. (fish tonight so I grabbed myself a marinated chicken breast).

When we got home we played head and shoulders and ring around the Rosie and then someone played Housekeeper lol So after we vacuumed and had lunch and SBean went down for a much needed nap, and I could steam the floors :)

So after we vacuumed and had lunch and SBean went down for a much needed nap, and I could steam the floors :) We picked up HBear and we thought we would ride bikes to the Leir House, to hand in HBear's summer choir registration. 

So lovely... my baby girl riding her own bike, with training wheels of course, but on her own.

Flash forward to dropping off the registration and going back UP to our house. 3 streets over. UP. 

There was screaming, there were tears, there was snot... oh man was there snot.

Don't leave me MOMMY!"

I thought, "get the F*** on the bike and pedal. Seriously? Do you think it is easy pushing this little tricycle while your stubborn sister turns the handle bars constantly to the right? Do you? Yes I know it's tough but it is only a very slight incline. Put some effort into it! What do you want me to do let go of SBean so she can roll backwards? IS THAT WHAT YOU WANT"

I said, "sweetie. I am not leaving you. I need to get SBean to level ground before I come help you."

Well, the bike is thrown down and the waterworks REALLY begin. 

Get me home.

So there I am pushing SBean as fast as I can so I can get her level and then running my ass back to give Hbear a push. 

Her training wheels are a bit high and she was literally spinning her back wheel. I was cursing every bad curse word that I knew, in my head. I finally just picked her up and gave her a big hug. She was tired and and she was done. After she calmed down it was much easier. 

Until she got distracted while walking her bike and it tipped over and scratched her leg.

I'mmmmm melting!!!!! I'mmmmmmm melting!! 

When we got home I hear,

"No mommy here. I moved to Cabos"

"Oh, well can you get me a drink and then you can go back to cowbose?"

Jeeze Louise what does a mommy have to do to get some peace and quiet???

So i shuffled the girls out back with Ninja and I...

cleaned the bathrooms. 

With the door closed the whole time. :)

Vegetable Packet
Adapted from Paula Deen

1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 cloves garlic, pressed
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 cup Cauliflower, florets
1/2 cup baby Carrots, halved
1 cup Broccoli, florets
1/2 cup Snap Peas
1/4 cup Cherry Tomatoes
1/2 red Onion, sliced
1/2 Red Pepper, sliced
10 mushrooms

Mix everything in a big bowl.

Place the whole lot of it on a large piece of tinfoil. Spread it all out. 

Wrap the tinfoil and make a pouch.

Put in fridge and marinate for 2-24 hours.

Put on the BBQ for 15 minutes.

Watch out for steam when you open it up!

Mushroom and Pepper Rice Pilaf
Adapted from Barefeet in the Kitchen

2 tablespoons 
margarine, divided
1 ½ cups mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 red bell pepper, diced small
1 yellow onion, diced small
3 cloves garlic, pressed
1 cup basmati rice
2  cups chicken broth
1/4 teaspoon salt

Melt 1/2 tablespoon margarine in a skillet over medium high heat. Add the bell pepper and the mushrooms and sauté for 2-3 minutes, until tender. 

Sprinkle with a pinch of salt and then remove the vegetables to a small bowl and set aside.

Add the remaining margarine to the hot skillet and allow it to melt over medium heat. 

Add the rice and stir to coat. Let the rice cook, stirring frequently for about 2 minutes. 

Add the onions and garlic and sauté for 2 more minutes, until the rice is lightly brown.

Add the chicken broth and bring to a boil. 

Reduce the heat to low and cover with a lid, making sure it continues to simmer. Simmer for about 20 minutes. Taste and adjust the salt if needed. Remove from the heat, stir in the cooked vegetables and then fluff with a fork.

Foil Packet BBQ’ed Honey Salmon
Adapted from Damn Delicious

1/4 cup honey
3 cloves garlic, pressed
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
4 salmon fillets

Preheat BBQ to 375.

In a small bowl, whisk together honey, garlic, olive oil, white wine vinegar, thyme, salt and pepper, to taste.

Prepare your foil. Take a piece of tinfoil and spray it with pam.

Place salmon on top of foil and spoon the honey mixture over the salmon. 

Fold the sides of the foil over the salmon, covering completely and sealing the packet closed.

Place on grill and BBQ until cooked through, about 15-20 minutes.



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