Monthly Archives: April 2017

friday favourite – black and white

Every time I go clothes shopping, a common refrain runs through my head…”try adding some colour.” Do you ever hear those same voices?

What my sister and I have discovered/accepted/embraced over the years is that black and white works. There is the occasional blue or green or shades of grey…but we are sticking with what works. And adding the colour in with jewelry, scarves and maybe even brighter lipstick (when we really live on the edge!).

I discovered Katrina’s Kloset, thanks to my friend Jeanine. She knows my wardrobe well because when she saw a black and white striped top on the mannequin – she thought of me.

So I got the black and white striped one, and a few more variations on the black with white, or white with black theme – and two black sweaters too.

Here’s my lineup of Friday Favourites…mostly thanks to Canadian-designer Joseph Ribkoff.



a small serving of spring soup

My sister gave me a great cookbook a few years ago – The Pleasures of Cooking for One by Judith Jones. Its small size reflects the smaller-serving meals that fill the pages.

I’ve been playing with variations of the basic vegetable soup recipe. I used to try and make soup by just throwing stuff together…and that’s what it often ended up tasting like. This recipe has the basics, and I can build from that and end up with a great, simple soup.

I made one last week, sauteeing the vegetables I could find in the fridge in a little butter. I often buy a small container of cut up veggies because I can get a variety of about six different veggies in a few servings, and these make great additions to the soup.

So I sautéed green onion, celery, carrot, broccoli and cauliflower. Tossed in a few roasted peppers I had baked a few days before. Everything simmers in some chicken stock, and I toss in a few frozen spinach pucks, a little cream and lemon/lime juice or white wine to finish it off.



My sister and I are Netflix binge watchers. I think you know what I am talking about. Gone are the days of watching one episode each week at a set time. Netflix makes it easy to sit down, get absorbed and before you know it, two or three seasons are done!

We both binged our way through Shetland a BBC Scotland crime drama that takes place on the Shetland islands…“where Scotland meets Scandinavia and the North Sea meets the Atlantic Ocean.” The series is based on the novels by Ann Cleeves.

The incredible scenery caught our attention and we both started reading more about the archipelago that is located just 400 miles south of the Arctic Circle. We discovered Shetland Wool Week, a celebration of northerly native sheep, the Shetland textile industry and the rural farming community on these islands. We’ve been talking about a trip to Shetland, in the meantime, we can at least make the official Shetland Wool Week hat with the free pattern on their website. Join us and make the hat and send us a picture!



friday favourite – fivefork farms

My spring flower share just started last week and it is such a great way to welcome spring! Fivefork Farms displays  a passion for growing,  arranging, and selling flowers that makes it a treat to go to the market and pick up my share each week. I usually end up buying more flowers…they are my friday favourite!



It’s happening again…spring! I know, it comes around every time, like clockwork. I was reading some of the spring blogs we posted last year – and here I go again with how much I love the spring season.

I was walking the dog on the weekend at a local conservation area (and my sister was hiking here) and I was thinking about how great it would be if spring lasted a little longer. When you still need a light jacket, maybe rubber boots even. And all around everything is waking up (including the walker and her dog) after the cold, dark winter.

Wild leeks and tiger lilies are the first greenery that’s up in the bush. Streams and creeks are flowing with clear, cool water. Tree swallow pairs are filling up the nesting boxes. And red-wing blackbirds are chortling in last year’s cattails.

And when I get home, I opened all the doors and windows wide to push all the dog hair to one side of the room – and flush out the stale air for some fresh, new, still-bug-free springtime oxygen.

What’s your favourite season?


matzo brei

My husband is Jewish, I’m not and while we don’t keep Passover (when you don’t eat leavened bread), I do make a pretty decent chicken soup with matzo balls.

We hosted a seder this past weekend for Passover, and I had to buy matzo. My grocery store decided not to sell individual boxes this year, so I had to buy 5 – 1lb boxes of matzo! That’s a lot of matzo. I made everyone take some home but there is still a box on the counter.


What do you do with all that matzo? You make matzo brei, a dish of Ashkenazi Jewish origin made from matzo fried with eggs.You don’t really need a recipe, I learned how to make it from my aunt Sondra who soaked the matzo in milk, added brie cheese and fried it in lots of butter. It was delicious. I make it every spring when I want to finish off the box of matzo. I don’t think of it during the year but find myself looking forward to it during Passover.  Here is a recipe from Food Network if you are curious to try it.


friday favourite – heather robinson travel

Heather Robinson_Travel Logo_Tag

Remember a few months ago when I posted about unexpected time off? My 12 week furlough with a potential for re-hire turned into a complete lay off and I was left with time on my hands. As I looked for work and thought about what I really like doing, I kept coming back to traveling and creating itineraries for my friends. So, with some help from my sister, I am launching Heather Robinson Travel and I am shamelessly naming it our friday favourite. You can learn more here. And if you want to read about some of the places I’ve been traveling, for ideas or inspiration, visit my travel blog – the way i travel.



cooking on sundays

It might be the best spring-like day we’ve had this year. After tiring the dog out on a long walk this morning, I opened the doors and windows and started to cook. I have had a good turnover rate lately for the eating through the food I cook on the weekends and pack away in single serving meals for lunch and dinner.

After the line was full of laundry – the first wind-dried sheets of the year! – I started prepping and filling the kitchen counters with ingredients.

steamed broccoli, sautéed mushrooms, grated cheddar, some frozen tomato sauce and frozen diced tomatoes…and more turned into

smoked maple pork chili

broccoli, ham and cheddar quiche, and broccoli, mushroom and gorgonzola quiche

It’s one way to help the work week get off to a great start…the promise of tasty meals just a freezer drawer away.

Have a great week whatever is on the menu!