Thursday, December 12, 2019

Thursday Art Date: ☕ Cozy ☕ and 🎨 Paint Party Friday 🎨


Hello Friends! 😊

Welcome to Thursday's Art Date, today our theme is Cozy. A warm brandy, a roaring fire, a comfy blanket and a good pair of soft slippers...Bugs Bunny knows how to be cozy! You could switch me for Bugs actually, that's how I spend a lot of winter evenings!!


Speaking of brandy, we had some in our egg nog the other day as we munched on homemade cookies and trimmed the Christmas tree. The pretzel bar I'd planned for dinner was a success! I'll post the photos and all of my recipes on Sunday!


This is our 7th Christmas together and we have had the same red lights and decorations every year. I really love Christmas lights, it makes the house very cozy and welcoming!


The stockings are hung over the fireplace, for us and the furballs. 🐾  I usually make some kind of fudge or candy as stocking stuffers for me and Alex. The pets get homemade chicken treats.


Alex surprised me with an early Christmas present. He said he wanted me to enjoy it now during the build up to Christmas. I have Dancin' Santa playing non-stop, I know all of the lyrics to Holly Jolly Christmas by heart now lol...  What a hoot, I love this! Does anyone know the television show Frasier? If you do, you will understand how disgruntled Frasier was every Christmas when his dad brought out Dancin' Santa. Anyway, we saw that episode last summer and I said to Alex "I WANT THAT", and he got it for me! Now I want an entire shelf of them!!


The gentle glow of a lantern on a snowy winter night is a cozy image to me. Here is my painting in watercolour.

I played with my charcoals again during the last week. I tried to follow a six and a half hour tutorial (no, that's not a typo!)...but I had ants in my pants so I stopped it and tried to wing it after the first four hours. I thought this image of a mother lioness and her cub cozying up to her was really sweet! But honestly, this one was very difficult for me. I was kind of relieved I'd finished it.

That's all for now folks, please check out the link widget below to see more Cozy artwork! And please join me on Sunday for my food and pets post. 🐾🐾🐾


I'm also linking up with Paint Party Friday tomorrow!

********************

At the Christmas Tree Farm.
Alex and I wait until December 10th to bring our tree home and decorate it. If we get it any earlier, we get too tempted to exchange Christmas gifts early and it takes all of the fun out of it! In 2014 we made that mistake and exchanged gifts on the 19th of December. When Christmas rolled around, we actually felt disappointed! We know better now!

December 19th: Next Thursday's theme is Holiday Stories, Carols and Lore. Click on the link for ideas and inspiration! Remember it's all about creating. You can showcase your paintings, drawings, photography, sculpting, baking, poetry...whatever you like! 🎨


Thursday Art Date With Rain. Click on the link for a description of the art date as well as a list of upcoming themes. Check out the themes for 2020 here!

Don't forget to add the URL link to your post (not your blog) to the link gadget below to share your wonderful creations! The link gadget expires Sunday at noon (EST).

⚡⚡⚡⚡  Be forewarned ⚡⚡⚡⚡ If you include a link that doesn't follow the art date theme, it will be removed! Thanks for your understanding and for respecting my fellow artists who put their minds, hearts and souls into creating art for the themes!

********************

Sunday, December 8, 2019

Sunday Food and Pets Post 🐭 3 New Cheeses 🐭

Sunrise on a cold mountain morn'.
Good morning Friends!

How are you all today? Life seems to have re-balanced itself this weekend. I'm very grateful for that! No more rushing around and stressing about winter driving! Yahoo! I SLEPT IN today - well 6:15 am is sleeping in for me! 😊


It's so cold out! Will I ever stop whining about the cold - probably not until May!! I saw a lump of blanket on the top of the couch this morning, upon further inspection...it was Leo. He needs to keep warm too!


We're still enjoying fresh asparagus. I made some Asparagus and Gruyère Crepes served with leftover Asparagus Soup. This veggie is delicious but also very good for you. It's a prebiotic fiber and promotes a healthy gut. I could eat some every day! I just don't like frozen asparagus, so whenever I find it fresh, I really load up on it and we eat it for days.


I went for a walk yesterday to pick up the mail and I instantly regretted it. It's very windy on the mountain lately and the cold air chills you right to the bone.


What better to warm a gal up than CLT Subs With Sautéed Mushrooms? 😊 The "C" stands for Cheddar. Alex is surprising me lately by taking over the dinner duties. He knows that I post my food photos here so he's making an effort to make them look photogenic! 


On the cheese front, we opened another Jarlsberg cheese that I made in October. This is the BEST cheese I've ever made. It's sweet and mild and look at those EYES!!! I have to make another one soon because this one is nearly gone! The only issue is that it doesn't melt very well - this is an issue with all of my cheeses so far this year.


The Cams are starting to form a beautiful bloomy white mold - a good sign!


And today we are tasting the Raclette cheese. Look at that lovely orange rind! I'll be posting a video on my cheese making blog soon about this cheese. I'm going to do a melt test too, because the whole point of a Raclette cheese is to be able to melt it in the Raclette machine!!

Charlie snuggling up to Oscar

Our little baby Oscar is doing better. Unfortunately he will need to stay on allergy meds, we don't like that, but at least he's not constantly scratching anymore. 


Here's a little video of my lazy dogs on the couch. Little do they know they're all getting a bath today!! At the end of the video, Jack is giving me the shifty eyes! Enjoy your Sunday folks and see you on Thursday for our art date! The theme is Cozy

 

By the way, next Sunday's food post is going to be very special! Tuesday is our traditional Christmas Tree Trimming Day and I have a pretzel bar planned!! Homemade pretzels, pretzel bites, dips, dessert pretzels...it's going to be delicious!! I'm too excited about this! Preparations start today!

Thursday, December 5, 2019

Thursday Art Date: Flavours and Aroma and Paint Party Friday!


Hello Friends! 

Welcome to Thursday's Art Date, today our theme is Flavours and Aroma. Tweety Bird is having a nice cinnamon café au lait. I think the cup is a wee bit too big for him! He loves how it smells and tastes! 


Oh pizza, how I love thee...the flavours of olives, green onions, Parmesan, Mozzarella and my homemade Goat Cheese - so delicious!!! :) Alex had this pizza all ready for me on Tuesday when I got home from my grocery shopping. You guys know I do monthly shopping...well I decided to drive myself nuts and do a SIX WEEK shopping day - DURING THE HOLIDAYS. 😵 It took me five days to plan out the meals, snacks, desserts, holiday treats, gifts and dinners, pet, car and household needs. After I got the plan ready, I listed the ingredients I needed, checked the flyers, then wrote the shopping list with my projected expenses - all while trying to stay within my budget! Yeegods...what a task but guess what??? I don't have to drive out to the city to shop before January 20th-ish!!! That's great news for me! :) It's worth the work!


Besides the trauma of grocery shopping, it was a tough week for me...I had to go back to the dentist for a chipped tooth (grrr)...Oscar the cat's mystery allergies flared up and despite our attempts to treat him at home...we had to bring him to the vet. All they did was give him more meds, poor thing. We really think it's something in the house that's bothering him but we can't figure it out. We are hoping that when we move next year, it'll clear itself up.

Having said that, I want to thank everyone for their comments on my last few posts...I'm so sorry I haven't had time to respond! I hope you understand!! I haven't had much time for art either!


But I did find some time to do an oil painting. I thought about how I just love the smell of wood burning during the cold winter nights. The aroma makes me feel warm and cozy. I guess you could say this is my dream home! :) I love painting...it's SO relaxing and I really needed that this week!


It's been frigidly cold outside too lately - some Italian brandy before bed hits the spot with its lovely aroma and delicious flavour!

That's all for now folks, please check out the link widget below to see more Flavours and Aroma artwork! And please join me on Sunday for my food and pets post. 🐾🐾🐾



I'm also linking up with Paint Party Friday tomorrow!

********************

Baby Oscar and Jack cozying up for a nap

December 12th: Next Thursday's theme is Cozy. Click on the link for ideas and inspiration! Remember it's all about creating. You can showcase your paintings, drawings, photography, sculpting, baking, poetry...whatever you like! 🎨


Thursday Art Date With Rain. Click on the link for a description of the art date as well as a list of upcoming themes. Check out the themes for 2020 here!

Don't forget to add the URL link to your post (not your blog) to the link gadget below to share your wonderful creations! The link gadget expires Sunday at noon (EST).

⚡⚡⚡⚡  Be forewarned ⚡⚡⚡⚡ If you include a link that doesn't follow the art date theme, it will be removed! Thanks for your understanding and for respecting my fellow artists who put their minds, hearts and souls into creating art for the themes!

********************

Sunday, December 1, 2019

Sunday Food and Pets Post - Comfort Food -

Frozen River at Sunrise (what the heck is that yellow spot??? Reflections I'm guessing!)

Hello Friends!

It's December! EEEK!!! Why does time fly so much faster as you age? Kind of scary in a way. It's so cold out, boo hoo hoo! Christmas is the only thing keeping me going right now...after January I will be in full hibernation, Hygge, cozy, hide-under-the-blankets mode!!! Okay Rain, no worries...only six more months of this...😢


One of the ways I get through our long winters is to make sure there is plenty of comfort food to eat.  What's your favourite comfort food? Maybe I'll take some new ideas and make them this winter!!

Here is some "empty the freezer" Stir Fried Rice. Frozen peas and spring onions made this easy meal very delicious! You can use any kind of veggie with this stir fry. I make this when I'm out of ideas or just plain lazy!


I used the last of the frozen summer corn to make my Loaded Nacho plate. It was so good, we made a second one - but in hindsight, we probably shouldn't have...talk about a food coma!


I'm not sure why, but I'm finding LOTS of asparagus at the market lately! I usually don't see any until the spring so I'm taking advantage because it's our favourite veggie. I made my Asparagus and Fontina Tart - but I used Cheddar cheese instead since we had plenty in the fridge! If you have frozen puff pastry, this is a great recipe to use it up. This tart doesn't reheat well though, so make sure you eat it up quick! Trust me, there won't be a problem with that! 😋


Of course it wouldn't be a typical week in the Rain household if there wasn't a cheesy melty Poutine to eat!


To round out the week of comfort: Minestrone Soup (for Alex) and Fisherman's Stew (for me). You can't have comfort food without a good loaf of homemade No Knead Bread for dipping!


We opened up my Farmhouse Cheddar last night. It was pretty delicious! It aged a month and it was nice and soft, kind of like a Mozzarella. We have FIVE more cheeses to open and taste in December!!! And I'm going to start on my Camemberts for the Christmas holidays!


The girls love to sit outside on a sunny day in the winter. Charlie is pure husky - this is her season that's for sure! Marlene is part husky, part shepherd and she loves the snow too, as long as there is sun to keep her warm!


Jack, however, takes after me lol...he prefers a cozy pillow with lots of blankets!!!

Baby Oscar In The Window

Leo Watching The Birds

Dana Sleeping By The Heater

When we first adopted Jack in 2015, we thought that he had a bad habit of chewing on his ears and we tried to teach him not to do it. But we realized that it's like a game for him - you know like some dogs chase their tails, he "chases" his ears and chews on the ends. He'll sit there for hours with one ear in his mouth!

I'm off for some more coffee now! Be sure to join me on Thursday for our art date - the theme is Flavours and Aroma. ☕☕ Until then, keep warm and cozy!