Beauty in the Ordinary

This is not about being brilliant, or extraordinary, it's not about wanting to be famous, or making headlines, or trying to impress...this about sharing a 'gift' each day with the lift the spirit of people when they read this blog, to show them the beauty in the ordinary.
"And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don't believe in magic will never find it." Raold Dahl

Tuesday, November 27, 2012


I'm looking for a good Tourtière recipe.

I can handle the pastry part, but I'm confused about the filling.

It seems there are many different versions, and given that I have only eaten this once, I really don't know what constitutes a 'good' recipe!

Is it...

just lean ground, or finely diced pork 

ground pork, veal, beef 

or a combination, and in what ratio?

Is it seasoned with...

ground black pepper
crushed celery seed
dash allspice
dash ground cloves
 apple cider


 dried summer savory

or perhaps...

thyme, savoury, sage, cinnamon and cloves?

Do I add a dash of Worcestershire Sauce?

Wikipedia says...
Tourtière is a meat pie originating from Quebec, usually made with finely diced pork and/or veal, or beef. Wild game is often added to enhance the taste of the pie. It is a traditional part of the Christmas and/or Christmas Eve réveillon, New Year's Eve, and Thanksgiving meal in Quebec, but is also enjoyed and sold in grocery stores all year long. This kind of pie is known as pâté à la viande (literally, meat pie) in the Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean region.
Tourtière is not exclusive to Quebec. Tourtière is a traditional French-Canadian dish served by generations of French-Canadian families throughout Canada and the bordering areas of the United States. In the New England region of the U.S., especially in Maine, Rhode Island, Vermont, and New Hampshire, early 20th century immigrants from Quebec introduced the dish.
There is no one correct filling, as the pie meat depends on what is available in regions. In coastal areas, fish such as salmon is commonly used, whereas pork, beef, rabbit, and game are often used inland. The name derives from the vessel in which it was originally cooked, a tourtière.

So fellow you have a favourite tourtière recipe?
I really would like to add this to my Christmas cooking répertoire.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Scalloped Potatoes chef-daughter's recipe

...never fails...


1 5-lb bag Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and sliced in a food processor
2 c 35% cream
2 c whole milk
2 sprigs fresh rosemary
2 c grated cheddar
salt and pepper
Butter a rectangular casserole dish.  Preheat over to 350 degrees.
Arrange half of the sliced potatoes in the dish and sprinkle with half of the grated cheese.
Bring milk, cream and herbs to a boil and remove from heat.  Season with salt and pepper.
Place remainder of potatoes in dish and cover with milk/cream liquid.
Push potatoes down with flat of your hand to make sure liquid and potato are compressed.
Sprinkle with remaining cheddar.
Cover with foil and placing an empty baking tray on shelf below, bake in oven for 1 hour.
Remove foil and bake for a further hour, until potatoes are cooked and top is golden and crusty.
8 generous portions.


Saturday, November 17, 2012

"Never Say Something Good...

...doesn't come out of something bad".

As I overheard that wise granny telling her grandson in our first hospital-merry-go-round-ride earlier this year...see here and here .

With all the time spent sitting around radiation treatment waiting rooms over the past few months,
this and hopefully a successfully-treated husband, is what I have to show for it.

My very own Hudson's Bay Blanket.

Made from a pattern on the The Purl Bee blog for a crib blanket.

I changed the dimensions and colours up a bit.

I love how it looks on my much-loved green leather chair.
A perfect blanket for hubby to cuddle up under and watch some TV.

Go to  The Purl Bee and check out their site.  They have some lovely ideas, patterns and tutorials.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

As I zero in on the three-year mark of writing this blog, I'm taking time to think about it's purpose.

Beauty in The Ordinary.

It's an attitude that is so easily mocked.  It can appear trite and sycophantic but for me, it works.  Just taking the time to balance each bad thought with a good one, gets me through the day.

Right now, given present life-circumstances, it would be so easy to fall into despair.  I feel like I'm sitting in the eye of the hurricane.  Not just because of Rudy's health, there's a lot of other rubbish stuff going on too.

But still, no matter how much I list the Bad Things, there's always a counter balance in the Good-Things column.

Just yesterday, I woke in a testy, irritated mood...feeling the weight of my world on my shoulders.  And then I received a text message from my neighbour saying "meet me out front."
And there she was, with her happy sunny face, saying "Let's put up Christmas lights!"

It was an unusually warm November day, so it absolutely made sense to do it then before the cold winds of winter start blowing.

Given my mood, it would have been so easy to grumble and complain and go back indoors, but I choose to let myself be swept up in her infectious enthusiasm and lo and behold within moments, the bad mood was blown away.

I guess the point I'm trying to make is the only power we have every day is how we choose to react to circumstance.  

I choose Beauty.

and thank you coffeepearlsand poetry 
for all your beautiful photos.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

I Got You Babe

together we can weather any storm.

Friday, November 9, 2012

It's Been A Busy Week...

This is what I have been doing all week...

I know it's only November, but...

we have four hotels in town...

and there is so much to do...

up and down ladders, laying on the floor hiding extension cords...

...if it stood had a bow on it!..

...tis (almost) the much more to come!..

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