Alright, friends. I am not going to win any awards with this post and I believe it’s abundantly obvious that I’ll never be a food blogger. However, this recipe has been requested and so I share…

I have spoken about this family favourite supper for the last couple of years, because it is definitely a go to and one that’s on constant rotation. It is ridiculous easy, requires minimal ingredients that are all very simple and everyone loves it. While it’s nothing fancy and definitely not something I’d serve the Queen, it’s a great hearty meal that usually yields leftovers (always bonus points).

Unfortunately, I cannot provide the original source of this recipe. I wrote it down on a piece of paper well over a decade ago and never considered I’d be publicly sharing it.

If you decide to give this a try, let me know what you think!

Recipe:

So Easy Shepherd’s Pie

So Easy Shepherd’s Pie

Ingredients

  • 1lb Ground Beef
  • 1 medium Onion
  • 1 can Mixed Peas & Carrots
  • 1 can Sweet Corn
  • 1/4 cup Sugar
  • 8 medium Potatoes
  • 2 cups Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese

Instructions

  1. Boil potatoes, season to taste with milk and butter.
  2. Brown ground beef and onion with salt and pepper. When beef is is cooked, add canned vegetables and sugar. Let simmer until heated through.
  3. In 13x9 pan, place meat and vegetable mixture on the bottom. Cover with mashed potatoes and sprinkle cheese on top.
  4. Place in oven under broiler until cheese is bubbly and light brown.

 

 

spring cleaning free download 2017Despite the looming snowstorm warning we are under while I write this, I am still planning out my spring cleaning. Since completing the KonMari Method, I no longer include decluttering as part of this venture (one of the many advantages of the process). This year I am sharing my cleaning marathon in the form of a series, both on here and on my YouTube channel. If you’re up for a month of scrubbing, sudsing, and sweeping – join me! You can find all of the information below! (more…)

family meal planning 2017

As far as a recap for last week, I’ll keep things short and sweet, because truly it was a bit of a blur. We enjoyed March Break by way of movies, day trips, hang outs with friends and the kids partied at a sitter’s for two days while I worked. While it wasn’t Disney, it was still pretty nice.

This week, I am back into work mode (when am I not)? Business wise, I am really hoping to be able to launch my eBook for KonMari kids and secure a venue for my first workshop. The pressure is on, but it’s really positive and I’m excited. Around the house, I am in full planning mode these days. Since finishing Mairi’s room, I now want to take on the entire house. I have started brainstorming ideas for the boy’s bedroom decor update and I’m looking forward to diving in. Hopefully, I will be able to get up an inspiration board on the blog this week and share with you what I have been working on. I’ve also taken the plunge and committed myself to doing the ‘April One Room Challenge’ of overhauling our master bedroom. On a personal note, we signed our whole family up to our local wellness centre and I’m so excited to finally start making fitness a priority.

On the food front, here’s what we will be cookin’ up this week:


Weekly Meal Plan – March 19-25

Sunday – Baked salmon, oven roasted potatoes, spinach salad
Monday – Pasta with marinara sauce, side veggie salad
Tuesday – Slow-cooker Cranberry Pork Roast
Wednesday – Shepherd’s Pie (maybe this will be the week I share the recipe?!)
Thursday – Chicken Stir-fry, quinoa
Friday – Breakfast for supper
Saturday – TBD


I wish you all a wonderful week (and restful recovery from March Break)!

Family Disney Planning

Continuing with the “wish I was at Disney this year, but I’m not so I’ll blog about it” theme, I thought it would be fun to share how I plan for Disney.

On the off chance you’re not familiar, I’m a planner to a fault (if such a thing exists) and being able to plan for an upcoming Disney trip proves nearly as exciting for me as actually going on the trip (I know, I’m freak). However, all planner obsession aside, mapping out ones trip in terms of: a schedule (including dining options, entertainment, etc) really does make a significant difference. The reality is, you’re never going to be able to take it all in while at Disney (that’s why you go back!), but establishing a gameplan in advance of the trip, will at least ensure you are able to enjoy all of the must-do things on your family’s list!  (more…)

museum of industry

 

We had the wonderful opportunity on Saturday to kick off March break with a visit to our local museum, The Museum of Industry. We’re big fans of the museum and frequent it on almost a weekly basis for their Lego club (psst, it’s awesome and free!), but it was a real treat to be able to enjoy this outing as a family and take in their current event, “Parrots, Pirates & Plunder!”.  (more…)

meal plan 2017 family

 

Last week was a really good one; a perfect balance of work and fun! Loic and Mairi spent their first day at the new sitter’s and it went well, Mairi clung a lot to her brother but I know this will ease off in time as she becomes more comfortable (or so I tell myself). Having a day solely devoted to work, provided much more flexibility for the rest of the week in just being able to spend time focused on the kids – win/win! This new routine is going to really benefit everyone and I’m feeling really settled about the decision to have them in partial care. On the work front, I managed to complete my first eBook for families wanting to go through the KonMari Method (yay!) and had the lovely opportunity to finally meet up with two other local bloggers and brainstorm some awesome ideas! The last of Mairi’s bedroom makeover was finished yesterday and our little princess is loving her new bed and decorations; I can’t wait to share the reveal this week with you all. A roadtrip with friends to the Truro library made for a great way to wrap up the week on Friday (and everyone kept their pants on this time)! We also got out for a nice family afternoon to our local museum, it was such an awesome outing that the kids thoroughly enjoyed and learned a lot from (blog post coming soon)!

This week coming is March break and I had been so looking forward to all the fun plans I made for the kids, until I learned we are expecting yet another snowstorm. Ho hum! We’ll see how it plays out and if traveling isn’t an option, we’ll make lots of blanket forts, have multiple movie dates and eat a lot of snow ice cream! Each day this week, I have at least one new upload coming on either my YouTube channel or blog – so if you’re into what I have to share… stay tuned!

Meal plan this week is a mix of comfort food (aka, stew again!) and fun treats to celebrate March Break!


Weekly Meal Plan – March 12-18
Sunday – Oven Stew
Monday – Oven Chicken Fajitas (kid favourite)
Tuesday – Baked Mac & Cheese, side Salad (another Pioneer Woman fav)
Wednesday – “Edna Mae’s Sour Cream Pancakes” (I’m doing it for the kids, ok? ha!)
Thursday – Slow-cooker Hawaiian BBQ Chicken Sliders & Slaw (YUM!)
Friday – Homemade Pizza on Naan Bread
Saturday – Pork Satay, Mixed Veggies & Rice


(Next trip, I’ll be taking along the DSLR :P)

This month I have Disney on the brain. Okay, I always have Disney and Florida on the brain, but it’s exceptionally the case lately because it’s March and this is my favourite month and time of year to vacation. Since we’re stayin’ put this winter, I have been coping by way of reminiscing of our last few trips to the “happiest place of earth” and planning next year’s reunion (hey, it’s never too early).  (more…)

As they say, better late than never (or so I hope), in finally sharing my monthly favourites for the past month of February!

monthly favorites
T
hings I Loved in February
(Not shown above – whoops! Purlisse Daily Lip Moisturizer)
1. Essence Eye Pencil in Black Fever
2. Marcelle Ultra Gentle Cleanser
3. Macadamia Deep Repair Mask
4. INSPR Eyebrow Duo Powder
5. Essence Silky Touch Blush in #20 Babydoll
6. ZAQ Bamboo Essential Oil Diffuser
7. Cuisinart Scrubber Cloth
8. Method Dish Soap Basic scented
9. Skin Lab Lift & Firm Sheet Mask
10. Totlogic Lavender Bubble Bath
11. Little Bea and the snowy day
12. Life in Pieces show
13. Nashville show
14. Martin’s Apple Chips

family meal plans
These last two weeks have been two of the busiest that I’ve ever had! Despite my best intentions, last week’s Week at a Glance just wasn’t in the cards, so here’s the highlight reel on what has been going on…


I launched my first KonMari Kids Virtual Group Tidying program last Sunday and it couldn’t be going better. This program is my baby; I created this entire approach to applying the KonMari Method to family life and so I’m especially proud that it is being so well received! I got a much needed girls shopping day in last weekend (that makes two weekends in a row shopping, I’m on a roll). Carla and I took a quick trip to Halifax to take advantage of a great sale at Gymboree and also squeezed in a yummy lunch, a Starbucks run and a great shop at the Gap Factory store. While I bought mostly for the kids, I did manage to buy some new pieces of clothing for myself – always a nice treat! This past week, I turned thirty-three and enjoyed a sweet day celebrating another year – I have big plans to make it the best one yet! I finally spent some time working on Mairi’s bedroom makeover. It felt good to make some headway, especially given it had been weeks of no progress. Mairi and Loic met their new babysitter on Wednesday and it went fantastically well; such a huge relief to know they’ll be in great hands and having fun. I am very much looking forward to having designated work days each week so that when the kids are home with me, my focus will be solely on them.  Work lately has been exciting and fun, I’ve been spending a lot of time concentrating on the backend of my business; really focusing on my programs and beginning to develop some new concepts. On Friday I attended my first East Coast Mommy Bloggers workshop in the city (yes, another excuse to get there)! It was such a great experience that it is worthy of a separate post (stay tuned!).

So far, this week coming is looking like a fairly relaxed one. I plan to finish up the last of the decorating in Mairi’s room and then really prioritize doing the same in my office space. I also plan on getting back into filming and hopefully post a bit more actively on here. Otherwise, I really want to keep things as low keyed as possible because it has been such a whirlwind lately and I’m feeling like some rest is definitely needed.

Last week’s Hello Fresh experience has inspired me to be a bit more creative with our meal planning and so I’ve spent nearly an hour poking around on Pinterest to come up with a few new ideas to change things up a bit. If you have any family favourite recipes, I’d love it if you’d share (in the form of a comment on here would be great).


Here’s what we’ll be whipping up this week:
Weekly Meal Plan – March 5-11
Sunday – Pioneer Woman’s Chicken Spaghetti (love this recipe)
Monday – Stir Fried Vegetables and Toasted Cashews
Tuesday – Rachel Ray’s Balsamic Pork Tenderloin, Sweet potato, salad
Wednesday – Breakfast for supper
Thursday – Healthy Mexican Casserole
Friday – Ground pork tacos
Saturday – TBD


hello fresh promo
When the generous people at Hello Fresh Canada offered to send me a Family Box to enjoy, I jumped at the chance. I have been interested in meal services, such as this one, for awhile but because I live in a somewhat remote area, I didn’t think we would have the chance. I was pleasantly surprised to learn that Hello Fresh ships out to the Maritime provinces. My first impression of the actual delivery was a good one; our box arrived promptly at noon and was extremely well package.  (more…)

easy meal plan

More snow made for another long start to this past week (we’re up to almost 70cm), but thankfully we more than made up for the amount of time spent at home by being, very busy, on the road for the last two days!

The beginning of the week had us storm stayed inside, which meant a whole lot more TV than I’d care to admit and too many games of hide-and-seek to count. It also meant very little got accomplished in the way of home projects. As much as I would have loved to finish up some of my to do list items, it just wasn’t meant to be. Thankfully, the weather appears to be turning around which hopefully will allow me to finally make some headway on everything that has been on hold.

With so much time spent in the house, when the weather finally cleared on Friday we jumped at the chance to head back to Truro. Carla and I packed every seat in her van with our little army of children and made our way over the mountain for a McDonald’s lunch date and an afternoon spent at the library (if you didn’t catch how it went, read here). I felt like we got a day pass from what was starting to feel like house arrest. Yesterday, Saturday, Rob and I decided we wanted to head to the city and do some shopping. We packed in a lot, including buying new clothes, a trip to Costco, an imperative stop at Skip Hop Jump and a fun supper at Montana’s. I actually don’t remember the last time we had such a great day spent just as a family (aren’t they the best?).

As per this week, I’m keeping things simple and just focusing on some side projects with my KonMari consulting (details coming soon) and finishing the last of what I can in Mairi’s room because some of the items from her bedroom update have not arrived yet. Confession, I haven’t even finished Mairi’s bedroom and already I’m brainstorming some updates to do in the boys room (I can’t be the only one who works/functions this way?!).

On the food side of things, I am really looking forward to this week’s meal plan. This is mostly because of my Hello Fresh delivery that is arriving on Wednesday and will be served up on Thursday (big thank you to Hello Fresh). I will be sharing all the details in both blog and video form, so stay tuned!


Weekly Meal Plan – February 19-25
Sunday – Chicken Parmesan (bought at Costco)
Monday – Stew (yes, again this week – Rob is on a roll and who am I to complain?!)
Tuesday – Leftover stew
Wednesday – Chinese stir-fry noodles (recipe found here)
Thursday – Hello Fresh Roasted chicken dinner
Friday – Homemade naan bread pizza
Saturday – Meatloaf, roasted vegetables and mashed garlic potatoes (recipe found here)


I likely won’t have a Sobeys grocery haul to share with you until later this week, because we bought so much at Costco – check it out!

mommy friends
Throughout today, in situations that can only be described as mortifying, my best friend proved once again why she really is the best and why I’m so thankful I’m journeying through motherhood with her by my side.

If you’ve raised little ones, you know the awkward moments that almost unavoidably come with potty training. To some degree, most of us have been there. I’m currently in the eye of the storm with our two year old, Mairi. I can deal with the accidents and mishaps in the privacy of my own home; where no-one misses a beat when Miss M comes bombing through the kitchen sans pants, but in public, not so much. Twice today Mairi proved while toddlerhood is not for the faint at heart. The first incident happened in McDonalds when she just decided to forgo her diaper right in the middle of a very busy lunch hour. There was a full audience of onlookers watching Mairi hands deep in her jeans trying to remedy whatever was bothering her, when Carla swiftly jumped into action and dealt with the situation (while I awkwardly avoided eye contact and started packing up). The second situation wasn’t quite so subtle. After hightailing it out of McDonald’s, we moved on to the library. The kids were happily playing and Carla and I were into a nice and relaxing conversation when I spotted it… Mairi, in the middle of the library, making her way up the stairs of the slide, with nothing but her shirt on. While parents gawked and all the kids pointed and yelled “Ewwww!”, I grabbed my mini nudist and ran to the bathroom. Carla, naturally, came to my rescue. She ran around the library found Mairi’s clothing and brought them to me. We had a good laugh and carried on with the rest of the day (which thankfully was uneventful). Now, with six children between us, most outings never go unscathed and today was really no better or worse than most. There is always at least one injury, meltdown, hitting/biting incident and usually it’s a combination of all those things. Today was embarrassing and equally hilarious. It will make for a good story to share when the kids are older and we’re reminiscing about all the antics that use to come up when their mothers ventured out together. I can confidently say that this conversation will happen because I undoubtedly know our friendship is a lifelong one.

I know this because there is no competition in our friendship, we simply want the very best for the other. Between us, laughing comes as easily as openly sharing our struggles. We nurture each other’s children to the point where people sometimes aren’t sure which child belongs to which mother; and while I’ve never taken our friendship for granted, today I realized how truly grateful I am for it.

Motherhood is hard on the best of days, and on the days when it is as trying as I’ve ever experienced, I’m thankful to know that I have someone like her who will always run around a crowded library for me, laugh off the awkwardness, take my chid’s hand as quickly as her own and be there for me through it all.

Here’s to the friends that have our backs and equally, our hearts.




This was such a fun way to make the most of all the snow that we have outside! The kids loved this activity and truthfully, the snow ice cream surprised me with how delicious it is.
As far as recipes go, this is the easiest thing I’ve ever made – it’s pretty foolproof (my kind of cooking)!


Recipe:
-8 cups fresh snow
-1 cup milk (any variety)
-1/3 sugar
-1 Tsp vanilla
-(Optional: toppings)

Directions:
(Differs from what was shown in video – this will reduce melting time)
-Combine milk, sugar & vanilla in a bowl and put in freezer
-Collect your snow in a separate bowl
-Add the ingredients from the freezer to the snow by mixing with a spoon or spatula
*Note – the ice cream does melt rather quickly, so be sure to enjoy right away!