Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Inspirational Sign.

Sometimes it's hard to remember that God is in conrtol.  I saw this sign today and really LOVED it.


Tuesday, August 30, 2011

I'm all tapped out! OUCH!

With new Dr.'s comes those dreaded physicals that everyone hates.  You know...those "lady" exams and bloodwork (that I don't mind).  I am used to getting bloodwork done for this and that, so it doesn't seem to phase me...but I am just not a fan of the "lady" stuff.  I've heard it only becomes more fun when you hit age for yay for that.

I had to give 9 vials of blood on Monday.  I can't ever remember having to give that much!  Then today, I had an app't with a new Rheumatoid Specialist, who again, wanted more bloodwork- another 8 vials.  My right arm was so dry, they had to do my left and I left throbbing!  ARGH!  I think I need to become less of a compliant when giving blood.  The lady was so nice about me having to give blood 2 days in a row...I was hoping that she'd offer me a lollipop or something.  NOPE. 

Why can't adults get lollipops?  We're fun too, you know!  What I think is the most funny, is that I gave so much blood yesterday, that it felt like I was at a Blood Donor Clinic.  I haven't donated blood for years, and she told me that it wasn't a good time to start now :)

YIKES!  At least we have a Dr. who is doing the whole work up.  But I'd be happy to not have to give blood again for a long time!

Monday, August 29, 2011

A quick job offer!

I was getting fed up of waiting around for answers from a certain I decided to hand out some resumes last Thursday (man, it's been a long time since I have had to do that!).

My last stop was a certain Kitchen supply store, one of my favourite stores for that matter.  I handed it in Thursday afternoon, got a call Friday morning for an interview, had an interview Friday afternoon and was offered the job Saturday morning!  What a whirlwind!  I was thrilled to find out that training started today and that I just made the tail end of her interviews (ended Friday).

Needless to say, I am LOVING being with people in the working world again and at such a fun place too!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Curry Night! Yum.......

It took me a few tries to finally like curry, but when you live in England for a stint of time (or most of your life in Graham's case!), you begin to branch out and try more and more of it!  It's REALLY popular in the UK, and they have some of the best curries I have ever had (Indian curries that is!).

Graham is a Vindaloo person, or a madras for sure, but I just can't handle that kind of heat!  I am a fan of enjoying my food, not having it sweat through my pores!  I just love the subtle, spicy flavours that some curries have, and the wide range of spices coming across my palate.  YUM!

I often eat madras with Graham, Daal (Lentil curry), or Tikka Masala.  He DOES NOT like Butter Chicken (too bad for his taste), but will eat a Korma with me if I bat my eyes long enough (or make sure it's the only one I have ingredients for in the house! HA!). 

Tonight, we had all the fixings!  Mango Chutney, Raita, Yogurt, Naan breads, Samosas and two homemade curries, made by my amazing husband!  It's so nice when he cooks on the weekend, as I do all of the lunches and dinners during the week!  We had a GREAT daal and a DELICIOUS Korma with rice.

Thanks babe, it was PERFECT!  My camera was steamed up, so the photos don't do it justice, but YUM!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Best FUN day out in ages!!!

Today, we had SUCH a great day!!!  We both came home, exhausted...but it was well worth it for all of the fun that we had today!

Today, we got to meet Cole's new brother, Luke and MAN IS HE CUTE!  He's so little, and it's hard to imagine that Cole was ever that small at one point!  He is the perfect mix of Brad and Sarah and we LOVED getting to spoil them all again!  It sinks in my heart everytime I am with them, how much I miss looking after Cole and Cayenne!

We then took Cole out for the day, so that Sarah, Brad and Luke could have some time together, while Cole had some fun one-on-one time!  It was already a busy morning, with present opening and Cole and Graham playing with his new toys at the house, while we were all catching up!  Cole slept the first hour (the car ride and the ferry to the Island), but once we arrived, he was ready for FUN!

We had a lovely picnic by the water, watching all of the boats and duckies...and then spent the rest of the day, enjoying the amusement rides!  Well, I didn't really, as I HATE rides, but Graham and Cole were in their glory!  The best thing about Centreville, is that if you have a child that doesn't meet the height requirement, you get to ride as an adult with them for FREE!  Or so we wasn't until the last ride of the day, where we were asked for double tickets, as only the carousel was supposed to be free for the parent of a small child!  Thanks staff for never paying attention to that!

The day was filled with TRAINS, BEARS, HORSES, REINDEER, the ZOO, pictures and much, much more.  Cole had a small nap on the way back home and Graham and I had never seen him so tired in our lives!!!  What a fun day had by all!  Enjoy these lovely photos of one of our favourite families!

Cole opening his present!  He's getting so big!

Me and baby Luke!  SO CUTE!

Graham teaching Cole how to slinky!

Cole's view for most of the day!

Cole spotted the reindeer from the line and was DESPERATE to ride it!  So cute!


We think that Cole's favourite part of the zoo, was the pony ride!

I have many cherished photos in this chair!  Today, it was Cole's turn!


Cole was obsessed with the BEARS!  He loved them so much and even patiently waited over 15 minutes in line to ride them!  It's a huge feat at anyone's age, let alone a 2 year old!

My favourite photo of the day!  Hilarious!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Friday night rituals...

Every Friday night, it's pizza and a movie night at the Clarke's!  We LOVE to make homemade pizza, usually with whatever leftovers are in the fridge, or with whatever's ready and delicious from the garden.  But it almost always has BBQ sauce as a base, my favourite!

Tonight, we had the most delicious pizza, made by Graham!  Usually I am the pizza maker around here, but tonight, apart from the dough, Graham put his masterpiece together!  We are cracker thin, crust people...that extra crunch, makes it feel like a snack too, so no extras for us later in the night!  Tomatoes from the garden, spinach, back bacon, BBQ sauce and three cheeses.  YUM!  There's nothing better than tomatoes from the garden!!!!!!!!!  So sweet and tart and juicy as anything!


We finished the night with a GREAT classic: Beauty and the Beast!  It's been YEARS since we've seen it and we loved every minute of it all over again!

I LOVE LOVE LOVE Friday nights!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

I have the internal clock of a night shift worker...

I have insomnia.  It's not something I enjoy (although when I was working at CAS, I did, as it allowed me to get my house clean, groceries done and walk in BEFORE going to work at 8am!).  It had been gone for about 3 weeks...not entirely, but I got 4-5 hours of sleep in a row, which is the best I've gotten in years.  Now...

That's the average time I see the clock in the morning.  Sometimes it's 3am, sometimes it's 5...but most of the time, it sucks.

That's my rant for today!  ARGH!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

I LOVE the county!!!

Don't mistake this as the country, but in fact the "county".  Prince Edward County that is!  It's somewhere that is always near and dear to my heart, as a good chunk of my family lives there.  My Oma and Opa settled there when they came from Holland, and it will always have a special place in my heart. 

It has brought many laughs from Christmases, Anniversaries for Oma and Opa and many stories of where Mom grew up, how she grew up and what our childhood was like when we went there.  It was a slower pace of life (than Hamilton, where I was raised for 14 years) and it oddly felt like a little piece of home, although we never lived there.  Is that strange?

Sadly, it's been almost a year since one of the best men anyone could have ever met/known, passed Opa.  He was the most kind, genuine, hard working man, who loved everyone that came in contact with him (well, I'm sure not EVERYONE, but he always made it seem that way :).  He is missed and loved by so many people, and it's hard to imagine him not being here.

We got a chance to go to his gravesite yesterday, and it was nice to say a few private words to him, say a prayer and just be with family.  My Oma is one STRONG woman, a woman that I am thankful for everyday.

Today was a day of family, peace, laughs (THANKS JENNY!) and memories.

Oh...the I love you!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

My husband LOVES the dentist...WHAAAAAAAT?!?!?!

Although he doesn't like having dental surgery, like he did last night, he does LOVE the dentist.  Not like, but LOVE.

I find this odd and yet again, another complete opposite from my own feelings.  I STRONGLY dislike the dentist.  Clean teeth at the end or not, I dread the dentist, whether it's for a simple cleaning, or anything else.  Ugh.  I love taking care of my teeth, at home, obsessively brushing at times, but there's something that just doesn't sit well with me at the office.

The poor guy had to have dental surgery last night, which made him very uncomfortable.  We sat down for a very leisurely dinner when he got home, giving up at the 1 hour mark...not being able to eat much.  I felt so bad for him...then I found this, to cheer him up!

I might laugh one day, if my dentist came in the office wearing that!

Monday, August 22, 2011

No more two hours drives IN RUSH HOUR!

After 4.5 LONG months, calling what feels like EVERY Doctor in the entire Durham region (Oshawa, Whitby, Ajax and Pickering), WE finally both found a Doctor!!!!!!!!!!!

Graham has had to drive into T.O for any appointments, which is a nightmare, as his Doctor only works Tuesday and Thursdays from 10-4.  WHAAAAAAAAAAAAT?  That must be nice.  It means that Graham always has to leave work early, and always gets stuck in rush hour on the way home.  Bye.Bye!

I have had the same Doctor since BIRTH.  Now THAT is rare.  I feel kinda sad to be going for a final appointment with him soon, and hopefully arrange to get my file to take with me.  I'm sure they'll want to charge through the roof, but I kind of need it, previous medical and current medical history and all.  Why is it that Doctors think they have the right to hold your file??????'s kind of about me, so I'd like to have it.  Fingers crossed, otherwise our new Doctor wants a COMPLETE work up. Maybe that'd be a good's been awhile since I had a physical (I know, I know!).

So, after over 100 calls and every office saying that they didn't have room for even one of us, WE HAVE THE SAME DOCTOR!!!  YAY!  He's really nice and eventhough the "interviews" were only 10 minutes in time, he spent 30-40 minutes with us, asking and answering any questions that we had!  Very good service!

So bye to my old Doc.  I'll miss his cute 5 foot, Hungarian self.  I have now moved on to a 6 foot Greek man.  Sadly, he doesn't look like a Greek god, but a 50+ year old "typical" doctor instead.

Best thing...and this speaks to my multi-tasking/very organized self...

It's on the top floor of the REAL CANADIAN SUPERSTORE!  That means groceries can be done afterwards, or either of us could get them done while we wait.  They also have a lab on site, and are only 10 minutes away. THAT'S better!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Bringing out the "Dutchness" in me...

Sometimes, on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon, we like to go to Chapters to relax and read.  We don't have to spend money (which we love not to have to do on a Sunday), and we can read books about things that we don't want to have to purchase, but just want to read. 

Most of the time, you'll find Graham in the back corner, by the window here, reading books on gardening.  He finds it very relaxing as well as informative, and at times, writes down things that stick out to him for our garden at home.

Most of the time, you'll find me in the back corner, reading cookbooks/baking books/travel books.  Three things that are a HUGE passion of mine.  I tend to read not only to relax (like Graham), but also to get excited about new ideas and opportunities.  I try my best not to get excited and interrupt Graham, but he puts up with it when I do, pretending that he's not distracted and just as excited as I am, about X, Y or Z.  I love that man!

Needless to say, if you ever want to relax, get out of the house, or enjoy a free activity, head to your local bookstore!

Saturday, August 20, 2011


We were invited to go to a hypnotist show by my Brother and Sister-in-law this weekend.  We took two really great friends with us, as it was her 30th birthday!  HAPPY BIRTHDAY JULES!  We love you!

I have always been a skeptic of hynoptists and still am, but I can say, that is was a hilarious night out!  Somethings just didn't seem to line up, somethings weren't too over the top to seem real and Jules and I laughed a few times at instructions that were given and the person hypnotized, just went on to do what they were instructed to do, without the prompt given to them to carry it out.  Interesting...

Some people are huge believers in it, and I guess that I am just not "sold" on the idea.  I do know a few people that have has success with hypnotism to overcome smoking or anxiety, but they are unsure of whether it worked because they WANTED to stop those issues so badly, or if because they were "hypnotized".  hmm...

Either way, it was HILARIOUS!  Graham volunteered to go up, but did not get "under".  He claims it was because Scott kept falling over onto him, but we think it's because he was laughing so much, and is a skeptic himself. Hmm...

Anways, thanks everyone for the laughs and great night out!  It's interesting how many discussions have come from it!

My Brother, the "gorilla".  What a GREAT sport and so much fun to watch!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Heigh ho! Heigh Ho! It's off to work I go!

Today I am putting in some hours at the bakery!  I am so excited!  Here's to good things!

Thursday, August 18, 2011


I love my husband for SO many reasons...

But last night ws the icing on the cake!  After dinner, he decided that he wanted to work out.  Usually this means going for a SUPER LONG bike ride, or to workout on the Wii.

While he was working out on the Wii, what I didn't expect was him working out to this:

Man, I love him!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

My brain is fried today.

This is what I felt like today.

I'm back to those lovely restlessness and insomniac nights that I thought I had long solved.


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

I love Fresh Local Markets!

While I forgot to take a photo of the actual market, I was more than excited to go and stock up on some fresh, LOCAL fruits and veggies from the new Pickering Market at the Mall.  It was a nice WARM day out (read: NO RAIN) and everyone seemed very chipper.

There were samples galore.  I mean, why wouldn't you do that?  Do you know how much more you can sell if you give out samples?!?!?!  It was great!  I tasted fruit that was the way it was supposed to, veggies that tasted so delicious and some fresh popped caramel popcorn, that was to die for!

I highly encourage you all to go out and support your local growers!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Our package arrived!!!!

Thanks to Carolyn Bentum, our amazing photos arrived today from the wedding and Trash the Dress session!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

WE.ARE.IN.LOVE with them!!!  Thank you so much again for your wonderful work!  Can't wait to hang them in the house!

If anyone ever needs a photographer, please contact us and we will send you any information that you need!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Graham's favourite!

I wanted to blog Graham's YUMMY dinner that he made today, but I was SO hungry and ready to eat by the time it hit the table, so I forgot!

It was a delicious meal of roast beef, roast potatoes (really, this is ALL he would need to make, to make me happy!), steamed broccoli and mashed swede (Rutebaga for the Canadians/Americans).  It was my first time having Swede, and it was...ok.  The meal was YUMMY, but the one thing that I'd change?  For some reason, Brits seem to think that AU JUS is GRAVY!!!!!!!  Gravy is thicker and sticks to your potatoes/meat and is decadentally (I know, probably not a word) delicious!  Au Jus...oh dear :)

Sorry hunny for forgetting to take a photo of all of your hard work!  To make up for it, at least I made your favourite breakfast this morning!!!

Baked Raspberry French Toast!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

A Clarke/Peever sleepover!!!

We always love getting together with the Peever's!  Whether it's going out together, going on holidays together, or getting together at each other's houses, we love to spend time together.  One day, when we're lucky enough/blessed enough, we hope to have a friend for Brayden to play with...ONE DAY.

We went for a walk along the lake, a play in the splash pad and the park and for a nice drink at the Port.  We had dinner, played some Cranium and then woke up and had a delicious breakfast.

Thanks Peever's for all of the fun, laughs and good times. 

Don't forget...

"Dessert Mousse" :)

Friday, August 12, 2011

Word to the wise...

I don't even think foul, grumpy or agitated could have described how I felt this afternoon.  Some reasons unknown, some too annoying to explain...but it was NOT GOOD.

If I could have warned Graham, I would have...but that would require being able to get ahold of him, and he had a BIG meeting today. 

SORRY hunny, I was in a bad mood.  WAS being the keyword there.

My lovely hubby tolerated my mood and tried to listen.  He helped me move past it by taking me out of the house, doing some errands with me and then having a leisurely dinner out.

One of our favourite places: Pho Saigon.  The food is good, CHEAP, simple and the "locals" eat there and by "locals", I mean the awesome Asians in town.  See, Graham and I have a motto: "If the "locals" eat there, then the food HAS to be good.  SCORE!

It was as delicious as last time and we left, stuffed, with leftovers and full of Jasmine tea (does anyone else prefer FREE tea, opposed to stodgy bread?).

Mood now: better, but still grumpy.  Hey, everyone deserves one of those days once and awhile right?

Thursday, August 11, 2011

I'm sorry, it's not fall, or WINTER!

Look, I know that the last 24 hours has brought us some "cool" weather (it's still above 20, but "cool" compared to what we've been getting recently), but what I saw in the stores was RIDICULOUS!

I've been seeing sweaters, long sleeved shirts and puffy vests in the stores for a week or so now (COME ON!), but today, I wanted to scream and/or stand in front of the displays and make a protest.  I felt happy though, that I wasn't alone.  I had a "friend" in the store that agreed with me.  He might have only been 8 or 9, but his response was perfect and over heard by a manager, who chuckled.

"Mom!  We haven't even had our summer vacation yet!  I'm not even back at school!  Why is that stuff out?  Did I sleep through summer?"


Here's what we all saw and were HORRIFIED by!

Halloween Decorations!!!!!!!!!!  WHAAAAAAAAT?!?!?!

What REALLY set me over the edge was this!  Can you see what's worse in August, than Halloween decorations?  It's my favourite thing EVER (I seriously shop all year long for it, stocking up as the months/sales go by), but COME ON! 

Everyone spent so long complaining about a LONG, WET spring and then a HOT, DRY summer and now people are jumping ahead to Halloween and Christmas?!??!?!?!?!  SLOW DOWN PEOPLE!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

You won! Enjoy!

Last week, I decided to do a giveaway for these super fun cupcake liners.

I did the draw this morning, Graham, not understanding why I was excited that someone else was going to get to bake something fun in these!

The winner is:

Rachel!!!!  With this comment:

3. With this give away? I'd probably make some fun cupcakes for some friends :). 
Looks like Rachel's friends might want to sign up for a night at her place sometime soon!  Have so much fun, enjoy and can't wait to hear/see what you did with these!  Make sure you email me your address, so that I can send these off to you!

I had a lot of fun doing this giveaway, so I'm hoping to do another giveaway of some kind, soon!!!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

I love T.O, but my goodness!!!

Okay, seriously people!  Toronto "rush hour" no longer exists.  Especially not in the summer!  Maybe it's also due to construction, but COME ON!  I left for Oakville yesterday at 9am, arriving at 10:45.  It's only a 45 minute drive!!!!!!!!!!!!  The way home, at 1:30, took me almost 2 hours again!  Really, I don't know how the commuters in and out do it.  I felt angry, annoyed, and like I wanted to flip anyone off who was being a "stupid" driver.

HOW DO YOU DO IT?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!!?

The only way I find it bearable, is to usually crank up the music, roll the windows down and just belt out whatever song is on the radio.

Yesterday, however, it was a DOWNPOUR!  Grr!  That made for the extra annoyance of people who feel that, just because it's raining, there is a need to drive 20 kilometers an hour, ON THE 401!!!!!!  Listen people, if you don't know how to drive in rain, I'm sure that you don't know how to drive in snow, so just STAY OFF THE ROAD!!!! ARGH!

Just in case you haven't driven through Toronto "rush hour" (read: all day and night traffic), enjoy.

Monday, August 8, 2011


Today, I decided to try a few new cupcakes, that needed some tweaking.  One was a weird combo that I had in Washington, that we were dying to try at home.  A mancake.  You know, something that supposedly is geared towards guys, that girls might not necessarily enjoy as much?

It was called the Elvis.

It was a banana/honey cake with a peanut butter frosting and a bacon garnish.  Sounds gross, but, heck!  Who doesn't love bacon?  Obviously NOT Elvis.

I gave it my best go, and I'd have to say, the bacon is sitting wayside, but the banana/honey and the peanut butter frosting are DELISH!  The bacon was just too weird for me! 

It did look fun though!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Pehea 'oe?

Pehea 'oe?  Means "what's up?", in Hawaiian.  What's up over here?  Well, Hawaii is now fully booked!  YAY!  We leave in 4 weeks and are SO excited!  We are very fortunate to have air miles leftover from Graham's job in England...air miles that just HAD to be used up before November.  OKAY, I guess, since we only had enough for the U.S, that means, HAWAII!  YAY!

We are lucky enough to get to fly out of the Toronto island airport, which means that we can take the GO train.  NO PARKING $$$$$!!!!  We then fly to New Jersey and on, direct, to Honolulu.  I don't know who's more excited, Graham or myself.

A few things that Graham has been DYING to do, that we didn't get to do on our honeymoon, are now booked as well! There was a GROUPON (if you haven't signed up for email deals, DO they are amazing!) for kayaking and kite boarding!  Graham has always wanted to go kiteboarding, so I was thrilled to find a deal for it!  Now if we can only find some restaurant deals, we will be set (we've heard it's pretty expensive to eat out in Hawaii!).

4 more weeks!!!!