happy birthday to my darling

Happy birthday to our dear papa and loving husband.

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The kids were home today due to a snow day and so having breakfast together and having a just a bit more time for the gift opening ceremony was special.

There were many little notes and drawings filled with lots of birthday love.  The sweet, homemade little gifts are the best!

We celebrate you especially today but each and every day is a reason for us to be thankful for you!  We love you and pray that we may have many more special years together.

happy birthday,

love me.

 

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snaps of the week |#33

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Looking back:

  • Johannes and I went to IKEA last night to pick up some odds and ends for this home and we decided to purchase a bookshelf unit for all the books that we have collected over years – we’ve always wanted to display them and we found a perfect spot for them here
  • it was nice to have my brother over this week – I spent most of the day with him on Thursday, visiting a bookstore, enjoying some lunch at a soup cafe and strolling through the mall  – it was nice to catch up with him
  • Ava and Isabella had a sleepover at their cousin Priscilla’s house this week – it was Priscilla’s birthday and they had a lot of fun they said, sleeping in one bed, however, I think they need to catch up on some sleep this weekend
  • we found little mouse droppings – ahhh! I can’t handle the idea of these little rodents living with us but the kids refuse to let us do something about it – they have hidden the mousetraps we bought and are hoping they can lure them into their playfort so they can be pets – Noah especially can’t understand how we could possibly do anything to these “little animals of God’s creation” – so it’s a real struggle, folks

Looking ahead:

  • today is a busy day for both Johannes and I – Johannes is going to tackle putting together the IKEA project with most of the kids around (what a great man he is!) and I have to volunteer at the thrift store where a huge, winter blowout sale is being held this weekend so I’m thinking it will be very busy which I love – I might take Ava and Isabella with me for a few hours as they love to play with the used toys, dress-up or watch old VHS movies in the warehouse while I’m working
  • we have two birthdays next week!! – Johannes and Isabella – we’ll be eating lots of cake
  • I’m planning to paint an old, wooden desk this week – it fits perfectly in a little corner in our kitchen right by a window – I’m excited to have my own bright, little space to organize the mail, school papers and other stationary things

 

Do you have a busy weekend planned?  I hope it’s a lovely one!!!

Marga Signature

happy belated banana bread day!

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So yesterday was National Banana Bread Day.  I wasn’t aware that this day even existed but when I read about it somewhere in the world of social media yesterday morning, I decided I liked banana bread days and that they really should be honored.

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I picked up this recipe book by Lise O’Brien at a garage sale years ago – it is very dated but has some of the most delicious everyday recipes in it.  I have the banana bread recipe memorized and have made it over and over.

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So, if you’re craving an easy-to-make, gooey, yet fluffy slice of banana bread, scroll down,  find out how I’ve been making mine and go bananas!

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Easy Banana Bread

  • 1/2 cup Miracle Whip Salad Dressing (Hellman’s mayo works well too)
  • 1 egg
  • 3 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp. each baking soda and salt
  • 1/2 cup chopped nuts or chocolate chips (optional)

Preheat oven to 350F.  In mixing bowl, combine salad dressing, egg and banana.  Add dry ingredients and mix well.  Pour into greased 9″ x 5″ greased loaf pan.  Bake 60 min.

note:  I often divide batter in two small loaf pans and reduce baking time to 40 min.

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Happy baking!

Marga Signature

snaps of the week | #32

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Looking back:

  • what a busy and bittersweet week it’s been! – we played our final Sunday night game in our former kitchen and erased the blackboard one last time and then we moved – we are mostly settled in, and are still adjusting to new sleeping arrangements, opening numerous kitchen drawers when looking for something and constantly moving items around- we’ve been particularly enjoying sitting around the fireplace – something we didn’t have at our old home
  • we’re so grateful for the help we received from family and friends this week in so many ways – helping with the move, cleaning, looking after the kids and some delicious meals – we’ve been truly spoiled
  • one sweet moment this week was hearing Noah tell Zara a Bible story – since all our books were still packed, including the children’s Bible storybook, Noah decided that this regular ritual should not be skipped so as they were tucked into bed with the door being open by just a thin crack, I could hear his loud, deep voice, full of expression, repeating the same sentences over and over about the strong and mighty Samson as a tiny,  high-pitched voice kept saying, “what?! pawdon?!”

Looking ahead:

  • Uncle Matt is visiting – I look forward to having my brother over for a few days which will mean some potential late nights and great conversations – Noah can’t wait to show him the Lego he has collected since he was over last and has great plans to continue building fancy structures with one of his favourite uncles
  • I’m hoping we can squeeze in an IKEA trip somewhere next week as we need some window coverings and other odds and ends
  • we look forward to a fundraiser evening at our school tonight – the kids are excited to mingle with their friends and the food served is always very delicious

Have a happy weekend!

Marga Signature

snaps of the week | #31

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Looking back:

  • our niece got married to her handsome groom yesterday and it was a beautiful day – they both looked stunning, the bride adorned in one of the most beautiful wedding gowns I’ve ever seen – it was a day filled with so much love, joy, family, emotions, laughter, tears and beautiful singing
  • the kids spent hours making, naming, and playing with their sock snowmen – thanks to my niece who patiently helped them along – meet: Oscar, Blizzard, Frosty, and Suzy (pictured above)
  • it is cold!  Temperatures dropped down to the mid-20s.
  • I found some beautiful, knitted pillows in the clearance section at Winners one night this week – that yellow color is perfect for our grey couch
  • I took Isabella to emerge one night this week with so much pain in her ear – an ear infection it was and she’s feeling so much better again

Looking ahead:

  • moving.
  • oh, and it’s Valentine’s Day this weekend!  We are planning to cook and enjoy a late, candle-lit dinner after the kids are put to bed tonight

Wishing you a lovely weekend!

Marga Signature

pork tenderloin with basil cream sauce

Happy Wednesday to you!  I thought to emerge from the towers of moving boxes that are filling our house to quickly pop by and share something mouth-watering we have enjoyed recently.

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I came across this recipe when trying to decide what to do with two pork tenderloins that have been living in my freezer for a while.  While we don’t often eat pork, this recipe was so successful that I prepared it again for a friend who recently had a baby.

With basil being one of my favourite herbs, and that combined with lemon and garlic, resulted in a flavorful, zesty pastse.  This is very easy to prepare and the cream sauce is so savory and delicious. (*I doubled the recipe for two tenderloins)

I followed the recipe almost precisely, however, I added an additional step: before placing the meat into the oven, I seared the tenderloins in a Dutch oven, using some butter for just a few minutes.  I saved the searing juices and added the remaining paste and heavy cream to the pan to prepare the sauce.

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We were amazed at how tender the meat was.  It pares well with roasted/mashed potatoes and any type of vegetable, or serve it on a bed of rice along with a salad – an easy, yet delicious and complete meal idea for any day or occasion!

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I hope this turns out for you as well as it did for us!

I’ll be back on Saturday with our “snaps of the week”, but for now, I’m going to organize and clean our fridge!

Marga Signature

snaps of the week | #30

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Glancing back:

  • we’ve had such unusually warm weather this week – I sat on our back deck yesterday, sipping away on my morning coffee, taking in the sun rays – it’s been pleasant but we are still hoping for a good snowfall as we haven’t done any sledding yet
  • a friend of ours kindly made us one of our favourite casseroles earlier this week, giving me time to focus on packing, etc.
  • Zara joined the giant teddy bears on the store shelf, making an elderly couple giggle as they walked by
  • on Wednesday night, I met up with a long-time friend and chatted over some delicious food and wine – we’ve been friends ever since early elementary school and I don’t think there are many others with whom I share so many memories, both happy and sad – it was another tears-of-laughter-rolling-down-your-cheek kind of evening
  • our creative, doodle/scribble-loving Isabella got an award for printing neatly this week – a big accomplishment for her!

Looking ahead:

  • we have a family wedding next week!  Johannes’ niece is getting married and we are excited to celebrate with them – they will look stunning, I’m sure – looking forward to a happy day with them!
  • we are starting to move things over to our new home today – Johannes filled a trailer full of garage/shed items as well as totes and boxes that I’ve packed
  • my sweet niece is coming over today to make a snowman craft with the kids – they love it when she comes as she always entertains them with fun activities, snuggles and stories

Until next week!

Marga Signature