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Coffee :who needs it?!


Today marks one year since I quit coffee. Why did I decide to ditch my favorite drink? The thing I went to bed dreaming about and excited to wake up to the next morning?! Well, I was using it in all the wrong ways. I was totally dependent on it when I woke up. Waking up like a non-functioning zombie isn’t actually normal!

I was also using it to suppress my hunger. When I felt hungry I would just drink more coffee… Instead of eating. Not good.

I wasn’t drinking enough water. I now have an arsenal of goodies that actually tastes good and count as my water intake. I’ll share more in a minute.

Obviously I’d have to replace that morning cup of hot bliss with something else equally hot and awesome… And caffeinated!

Enter TEA 😊 Yum! I started with the classic black tea, Earl Grey; but with vanilla! Whoop whoop. Yes, it is dreamy! It seemed like a nice starter tea with high caffeine but so much yummier than your typical red rose type. Here’s the list of black teas I had to choose from.

So how did it go, you asked?! Knowing how big my coffee addiction was and my history of withdrawal headaches, I knew I’d have to wean myself off as best as possible before making the switch to only tea. It was a smooth transition with very little headaches. Yay!

As I got farther into the journey I found I woke up peppier and not as dependent on the caffeine but still enjoyed sitting down with a hot cup in my hands. And by the way, tea is quite fascinating! I learned so much!

Soon I was able to explore all the different types of tea; some with less caffeine than others. I even found some awesome fruit teas to excite my dreary water. And to my surprise I discovered a natually sweet and decadent tea that I thoroughly enjoyed on our cold winter evenings. They became my treat, instead of a sweet snack. Wow, that’ll change things!😃

Something change for me….. I was hungry! Lol My appetite was no longer suppress- so I listened. Let’s eat! Yep, I became a breakfast eater. Nothing Fancy, no schedule- just something decently healthy in my tummy.

Fast forward six months and I learned that I should be eating within one hour of waking up and I figured out how to make an amazing egg omelet.

I was never an egg person. Now I love them. I also discovered Matcha! Now that is an amazing coffee replacer!! 6 hours of calm alert energy? Yes please!

It’s been a flavorful year. I only ever drank black coffee. Now I get to choose a fresh flavor every morning. 🤗

I highly recommend getting into teas if you aren’t already. I can’t say enough good things. I’m excited to really play around with iced teas, lemonades and popsicles this summer.

I order my teas and matcha (and dip mixes) from the Canadian company Steeped Tea. Love their story and small family vibe. Check out their catalog here.





This primitive sort of bread was introduced into the west by the Selkirk settlers. It has become a favorite of northern fur trappers.

2 cups flour

1 teaspoon salt

3 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 cup shortening (I use butter)

3/4 cup water

Sift flour, baking powder and salt into bowl. Cut in butter until mixture resembles course bread crumbs. Add water and mix quickly to a soft dough. Turn out on floored board, kneed lightly for 30 seconds and pat into a 10 inch round. Cook in lightly greased frypan over medium heat till brown. (about 15 minutes per side) Serve warm. Yeild: 1  10-inch bannock.

Note: I never mess up my counter… just knead quickly in bowl and flatten into pan or make smaller ‘patties’ in your hands for quicker cooking and individual servings. My 10 yr old daughter really enjoys making these for the family. She prefers to pat the dough into small biscuit sizes and fry them up like that. I’ll be the first to admit, they turn out better than mine. They are made with love and a sense of confidence that I admire, mine are always rushed and usually a last minute addition. She sure knows how to slow things down and really enjoy her time in the kitchen. So these are officially hers to make now. And because she has mastered this simple recipe and rarely asks for help, I truly love working the kitchen with her.

On a side note: we usually cook these in a dry non oiled skillet, whether it be non stick or coated cast iron.



Fabric Easter Eggs


This is way too cute not to share!  Happy Easter weekend everyone! I am sewing these up as we speak. I’m hoping to surprise the girls with them in a couple days.  Maybe they will learn to juggle?! Cause we all know they won’t be sitting pretty on a shelf at my place.  They will be played with…. hopefully lovingly 😆😉

I didn’t print out the pattern because I’m in my studio and got too excited and just scribbled out a template. After a few tweaks and having to use old t shirt strips for stuffing…till I get home to my real stuffing…. this is a good test for my improvised pattern. 

Okay… now follow Retro Mamas link and go make these! ! Now!…. go. Don’t worry,  you got time.  If I can pull this You definitely can! 

Following Trends~Or Not


Hello. Hello.

So, I’ve been on Instagram (IG) for a couple months now and quickly discovered something.  There is a huge Joanna Gaines following!  I don’t have t.v. or follow their show but I have heard of them over the years and recently jumped on YouTube to check out Fixer Upper. I’m not sure if the show has inspired this white on white on antique on chippy paint thing or if it is just a common design trend right now.  Either way I’m kind of digging the simplicity of it. Part of me wants to create colorful art pieces; and I have.  But I figured I should try making a simple black and white worded sign with stained trim. And since I had the exact trim pieces already cut (from the shop counters we made) and the exact stain color they(IG DIYers) were using…. it was natural that I give it a go.

I cut some square pieces of MDF that I had left over from building the shelving in the shop. Then I just free handed some lettering. My brush wasn’t very good and left trail marks, which I’ve decided I can overlook.  I made 2 signs and one ended up with the trim drying in an off kilter kind of way. So that one is in my home and we love it. The other one is at the shop greeting people as they walk in.

I later got my printer connected to my new lap top and was able to try printing out some stencils. I went into Word on the computer and did up a few simple fonts. After I printed it as big as possible I had to enlarge it a time or two, depending on the size of my sign. Then I used the pencil shading method to transfer the outline onto the board. This worked better than I expected.  I got some new brushes and went to work.  Working on the big signs was easy but as I got to the smaller mini size.  I again had trouble. 

I ended up using a nail to push the paint around into the corners of my “it’s so good to be home” mini sign. I also had issues with attaching the trim. This time I thought I’d nail the pieces on while the glue was still wet. Hahaha that’s where things got slippery! Nails were bent, bad words were spewed and all the while I was thinking about the brad nailer that was being used at my house at that very moment. (Borrowed from a friend)  BUT instead of taking it home and trying to do it the easy way, I persevered. It’s at my house now….  (Not good enough to sell) greeting us happily when we come home.

I have since seen women grab a brush and paint free hand in all these beautiful fonts. Just. Like. That. Perfect brush strokes. I’m left thinking that I either have to realize it’s not my thing or practice my cursive skills and my painting skills.  Oh and my trim skills. And then they package everything so pretty for shipping. Ahh!  They’re all so perfect… Wants to make me pull my hair out.

So I think my current conclusion is to stop trying to live up to. …which also translates into. ..stop copying what everyone else is doing and just do what YOU do. For ME?… I think I like abstract!  😂

So I ended up with a few cute signs. And maybe I’m the only one who sees the flaws. But for right now they serve as a great reminder of the old saying practice makes perfect. And of course the one about doing your own thing.  My favorite though, has to be the quote I chose for the back of my business card, which says “I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious.” Albert Einstein. Love that quote so much!!!!

So,  I will try everything and enjoy every aspect of the process.

Enjoy the journey!

Just create SOMETHING!

Double chocolate-orange pudding cake


 Filled with old-fashioned goodness, this dessert works well in a slow cooker. Orange zest and chocolate chips give it extra pizzazz.

I absolutely adore pudding cakes. This is by far the best I’ve had. I was never a big fan of orange and chocolate but this is delightful.

Makes 4-6 servings.

1 cup all-purpose flour

3/4 cup granulated sugar (I didn’t have any and used brown sugar instead)

1/4 cup plus 3 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder

2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 cup milk (I used almond milk)

3 tbsp butter, melted

1 tbsp grated orange zest

1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips

3/4 cup packed light brown sugar

1 2/3 cups hot water


In a medium bowl, mix together flour, granulated sugar, 3 tbsp cocoa, baking powder and salt. Stir n milk, butter, orange zest and chocolate chips. Turn into 3 1/2 quart electric slow cooker.

In another bowl, mix together the brown sugar and remaining 1/4 cup cocoa until well blended. Sprinkle over the batter. Gently pour the water evenly over all: do not stir.

Cover and cook on high setting for 1 3/4 hrs-2 hrs. Do not cook on low setting for a longer time.

Serve warm or at room temperature, topped with whipped cream.

Rolled Oat Cake


If using leftover porridge omit fresh oats and water. Use about 1 1/2 cups of cooked oatmeal.

1 cup rolled oats (not quick oats)

1 1/2 cups boiling water

Combine and let stand till cool.

1/2 cup butter

1 cup brown sugar

1 tsp. vanilla

1 cup flour

1 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. salt

1 cup dates, chopped

1/2 cup walnuts, chopped

Cream butter & sugar – beat in oats & vanilla.

Stir dry ingredients & add to first mixture with dates and walnuts.

Beat & blend well.

Bake in 9″ pan @ 350 for 35 min.

Note… all ingredients can be mixed in the pot!

This a my sons favorite! Last time we added chocolate chips for a totally different taste. In these pictures, I’ve added slivered almonds and sprinkled sugar and cinnamon on top.



Be sure that the 2 1/2-quart souffle dish you plan to use will fit into your 5-quart slow cooker before proceeding.

  1. 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  2. 2 eggs
  3. 1 1/2 cups sugar
  4. 1 cup canned solid-pack pumpkin (I use my frozen puree – thawed & drained)
  5. 1/2 cup water
  6. 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  7. 1 teaspoon baking soda
  8. 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  9. 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  10. 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  11. 1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg
  12. 1/8 teaspoon salt
  13. 3/4 cup pecans *as mentioned above,  I used walnuts

In a large bowl, mix together the oil, eggs, sugar, pumpkin and water. Add the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and salt. Blend well. Stir in the pecans. Turn into a buttered 2 1/2 quart round souffle dish. Carefully place the souffle dish in a 5 quart electric slow cooker.

Cover and cook on the high heat setting about 3 1/2 to 3 3/4 hours or until a cake tester inserted in center of the cake comes out clean. (Do not attempt to cook on the low heat setting for a longer time.)

Remove the lid and turn the cooker off. Leave the cake in the cooker until the dish is cool enough to handle. Remove from the cooker.



Biscuit Pizza Crust

Biscuit Pizza Crust

I didn’t make a lot of pizzas in the past. I thought the yeast dough seemed like a lot work. I used to be a little afraid of yeast, to be quite honest. I’m not anymore, but this simple recipe remains a favorite around here. It’s so yummy and quick that I don’t even bother with yeast crusts. I’ve made them here and there when I’ve actually planned ahead and had the time but everyone still prefers this crust! So there you have it… why fix something that ain’t broke and is even easier?!


Biscuit Pizza Crust  -makes one hearty pizza

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 4 tsp. baking powder
  • 2 tsp. Italian seasoning
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 4 tbsp. cold butter
  • 3/4-1 cup buttermilk
  1. Mix all dry ingredients together.
  2. Cut in butter till crumbly.
  3. Stir in buttermilk and knead till well combined.
  4. Press out into pan. Yes, there will be holes. Just fill them in. note: I used a perforated pizza pan with parchment paper for this particular pizza and it baked up really nice. In the past I’ve used a cookie sheet but found it didn’t brown as nice as with the holes. But definitely great no matter what your pan.


Now load your sauce and toppings. Bake at 450 till golden brown. EAT and ENJOY. mmm. mmm. Good stuff right there!


see that? crispy crust, oozing sauce, browned cheese…..

This is a meal in and of itself. Very filling. We share this with 3 kids are stuffed by the time it’s gone. And I always forget to make that salad. You know, the one that makes this a healthier meal. haha