Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Treasure Tuesday - Bargain Hunting is my thing

It's all about searching for the right thing, being there at the right time and of course paying as little as possible for whatever item you require.  Although there are some things you have to just suck it up and pay for whatever price it is, because of their quality and life time warranty - is there such a thing?  Anyway, I am pleased that we found a few neat stores that are bargain like but not dollar store.  There's a couple we found in town and we have been lucky to find items that we needed for the home.  I like checking out stores that are different from what we were used to in San Jose.  Although I have to admit that there's a lot of my favorites back in the are we use to live and the bargains I can get there are even better.  But now that we are here, I need to switch over to what is available to us.  We are still just getting things as we go shopping and we find something at almost every store we go.  I know I can get some items in the more expensive store, but we have already been spending bigger items and so I have to keep things lower for items that are not as important.  It's getting closer and closer to finishing the decoration and much needed furnishings.  Here's some of the things we found. 

  • Blender for $6  - Jeff will use it for blending his compost
  • Bread Machine $ 15 - almost new and this is Jeff's new hobby, making bread
  • Wire tool .50 cents - for my crafts
  • Fabric flowers - for any arrangements for the home
  • Warm wrap - for my during the cold temperatures day or night
  • Wooden vase - a special size for that corner in the hallway
  • Piano bench - repainted the legs and reupholstered the seat

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Stitching Sunday - Back to sewing

Since we move to our new home,  I am pleased to announce I now have my own room that is used for crafting, painting, sewing, blogging, filling papers, not to forget ironing whatever it is that I want to keep busy with.  One of the great benefit is that I do not have a basket of ironing items.  When I do our laundry, I take the clothes that needs pressing in this room and I do them after folding the laundry.  It is also nice to have my sewing machine always ready for whatever it is that I need to sew and or repair.  Can you imagine if I had to take the drapes that we bought for the dining room to a seamstress, the cost of just shortening them. I am not sure how much it cost now a days for stuff like that.  Even hemming pants or any taking in a few inches for a dress, etc.  We also needed new curtains for the RV.  Jeff knows I am a little creative and can do this.  I took down the old own and unstitched the part for hanging the drapes.  There was a good sale of drapes at Fabricland and it happens that the color we needed was the one on sale.  I bought one panel and divided in half in order to have one for the right and one for the left window of the RV.  Last Monday night, I made a couple of hand towels, one for our guest room and the other for a friend who is San Jose Sharks fan. We also did a little bit of our own headboard for our bed using the idea from one of the room in our home in San Jose.  I am guessing by now, you know I have been busy.

Not the greatest photo, but this is on the driver's side window.  The material is perfect to provide privacy.

Since we still do not have night stand the frames are just temporarily hung.

A hand towel or a golf towel for a very good friend and golf buddy.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Frustrated Friday - Need some lessons

For some reason or another, I am on a roll on painting bottles.  The first few I did was a result of the champagne bottles that we received as a welcome to your new home from our realtor.  Then we had company and two more bottles were empty so I painted them also. Then there was a small bottle, a small can and a small metal basket I got from the garage sale.  At first I used the left over paint that the previous owner left in the garage.  Then I started with the left over paint from our front door.  I have to check previous post to make sure I have not posted the photos of these bottles that I have painted.  After this week, I am done with bottle painting as I ran out of ideas.  Maybe I should take some painting lessons at the senior centre or the local Community Centre.  Notice how I spell the word CENTRE.  I am definitely back in Canada.  This would be a perfect winter class as long as I don't have to travel far and I can do it during the day.  So check out these bottles with winter/Christmas in the North.  Some of these scenes are from memories of what it was like living in Northern Canada.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Waste Wednesday - Sorting is not simple

Recyling materials and waste is not simply in this area that we moved in.  We were very good with recyling items when we lived in San Jose.  But there, it was simple.  Black bin - garbage, Blue bin - paper, cardboard, bottles, cans, styrofoam.  Green Bin - yard waste, grass, leaves.
The first thing we did when we got here was ask our neighbor with regards to their garbage/recycle schedule.  We were told to buy our own garbage bin, recycling blue bins and green bins if we wanted to do it, but not necessary as they would pick up your leaves, branches, weeds, etc. as long as you pile it in one spot in front of your curb.  But it is actually not that simple.  Garbage pick up is every Friday but Recycle Blue bin pick up is only every other Thursday.  I don't even know when they pick up the yard waste.  By the way the glass bottles and jars, foam tray, food container and packaging plus plastic bag and outer bags are to be DROP-OFF ONLY - you have to take it yourself to the Recycling Depot.  OK let's go back to the BLUE BINS - we labelled one PAPER ONLY and the other PLASTIC.  After a month, we thought we got it down pat.  Well, Jeff got a note from the Recycling guys and they did not take some of the stuff that we thought was part of the blue bin plastic,cans, cartons and foil wrap. I mean really, I could go on and on but instead of trying to figure out,
I placed their paper instruction in front of our fridge so I can just check where an item goes in one of those blue bins or garbage.  Oops, I almost forgot, Jeff also started this compost container which holds food scraps, fruits, veggies, etc.  It has a very potent smell each time I open it.  I have to convince him to find another spot instead of our counter near the sink. The one important one is the hazardous waste - my insulin needs - Superstore provides a container for free and once full, you bring it back to them and the provide you with another empty container.  In San Jose, you buy the container every time you need an empty one.  For more information visit

Image result for recycle bc

Image result for recycle bc

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Tennis Tuesday - Taking advantage of warm weather

In another couple of weeks, the leaves will start to turn and then fall comes then we all know that white stuff.  Jeff and I have been taking advantage of some of the warm weather to play tennis and get a bit of exercise.  The only problem is most days it is very smoky.  We have stayed in as much as we can but after a while we need to get some fresh air or should I say smoky smell.  We had found at least 3 different tennis courts that are very close to our home which is perfect.  There's one that has a great view except I cannot take great photos to share because of the smoky skies.  Sorry I have to keep repeating myself because it's been over a month and we hardly see those beautiful blue skies.  Anyway, I decided to take photos of the different plants around the park where the tennis court it.  If you look closely on one of the photo you can almost see the Kalamaka Lake. 

Notice some of the leaves are already changing colors.

We notice that these grass weedy like plants are everywhere.

This would be a beautiful photo if the sky was blue.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Maturation Monday - Is it possible I am getting better

It is hard to believe but most of the plants that I bought and planted in pots or in a box outside and inside of our home has been maturing.  Except for that beautiful red mums that I bought from Home Depot which started dying from heat or smoke or something.  I was very disappointed but luckily my friend Dorothy brought me a house warming gift - A bigger
pot of two colored mums.  I've added some herbs like Thai Basil and Lemon Verbena.  At the same time I bought a couple of non edible Kale in green and purple.  They are looking good and have to definitely bring them indoors when the cold weather arrives.  The other plants with flowers are doing well and I have to give credit to Jeff who is very good at watering all of my plants.  Our front porch looks good with all the different pots with plants.  We also added two wicker chairs for us to seat and enjoy whatever is left of the summer weather.  It is sad that we have not seen some of the perfect blue sky that the Okanagan has due to all the fires in the surrounding areas.  When we wake up in the morning, that is the first thing we check is the smoky skies.  It still does not stop me from golf and tennis, I just need to use my puffer for protection.  

This was the view from our living room window last Friday at 9 am.

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Sesquicentennial Saturday - Canada 150 Anniversary

It just happens that we decided to come back to live in Canada this year when this country is celebrating it's 150th Anniversary of Confederation.  There's still a lot of celebration going on probably till the end of the year.  Since I have lived in Canada for over 35 years, it's really what I call home.  While checking out some fabrics at a store called Fabricland, I notice they had a lot of materials celebrating Canada's birthday with some just the red and white maple leaf but there's a set that really caught my attention.  In fact it was Jeff who noticed it first and gave me the idea on what to do with them.  After checking it out, I thought of thinking things through but after two weeks, we went back since they had a big sale and we bought the fabrics.  Jeff helped me with this project and we finally finished it last night and now we can say we are celebrating Canada's 150th anniversary in our own way.  These are the two Territories I have lived (Northwest and Yukon) and two provinces (Ontario and British Columbia).  Although I have visited almost all provinces except Newfoundland and have never visited nor lived in Nunavut, I am very happy to be back in the country I call home.

My sister sent me this as her house warming gift to us.  It is very fitting as when we lived in Yellowknife we did see this scenery live.

Another very familiar scenery during the winter of children wearing their parkas and going to a small schoolhouse.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Tasty Thursday - Checking out new places to eat

Does anybody still remembers the Welcome Wagon?  If my memory is still good, this is the only place that I have moved that a representative of the WW actually stop by the house and provided some coupons.  Last week we got a chance to try a new place downtown Vernon called STATION BBQ SMOKEHOUSE.  We went there for lunch after we did some errands downtown in the morning.  They had just opened at 1130 but there were a couple of other patrons.  We were greeted by the friendly waitresses and took our drink order.  They had a special southern sweetened ice tea, so we order a two.  We check out their menu and there were a lot of choices it was difficult to pick just one.  After our drinks arrived at our table, we decided to order.  I ordered the MOUTINE with Texas brisket.  Jeff ordered something more healthy. It did not take long and our lunch arrived.  The portion of my Moutine (poutine with meat) was a bit too much and I knew I will be taking half home.  Jeff's looked very healthy with a bowl of fresh cut veggies.  Half way through our lunch, the owner stopped by our table to see how we are doing and told us some stories about how the restaurant started, the menus and the drinks they served.  This is one restaurant that we will come back to and if you are ever in Vernon, you have to make sure you try it too.

This loaf of bread is not from any restaurant.  Jeff made this with the help of our friend Dennis.
A very healthy loaf of bread with nuts, dried cranberries and a variety of seeds.

Monday, September 4, 2017

Mix Up Monday - Anything and Everything

Happy Labor/Labour Day to my readers/followers in Canada/USA and other parts of the world, that is if I have readers/followers from that part.  I am sure for those who area still working, this was a great weekend to catch up with everything as well as getting the children ready for school.  It is also a good time to clean up areas in the house and start thinking of the next season and maybe even do some decorating.  That reminded me that I need to change the flag in our front garden.  Anything and everything today means I will just share a bunch of things that I have been doing around our new home.  It is still pretty new because we have been here for only one month and 4 days.  Hopefully you'll enjoy these photos. They are all part of my labour day weekend projects.

This is an oil painting on satin fabric my cousin Mallu gave me. I used a piece of plywood with batting under.

The new bar stools and dining room chairs needed some booties, so I crocheted 12 and need another 16.

Bought this plain heart shaped wood and I painted it using acrylics from the Dollar store.

As well as this old napkin holder I bought for 25 cents, I used the left over paint from the door.

Friday, September 1, 2017

Finicky Friday - Mocha Bailey's Macarons

It has been a few months since I made my very first macarons.  Since were going to meet my cousins who I have not seen for a few years, I thought I would bring some of my baked goods and treats.  This time I decided to make some different flavor of macarons.  I chose the mocha and Bailey's.  I forgot to get some espresso or coffee powder so I used a coffee liquor instead.  For the filling, I followed the ganache recipe which turned out not too sweet.  The particular recipe I followed this time was a different one and the result was not as perfect as my very first one.  So now I know the next time I make them is to use the same recipe.  My relatives loved the treat specially the kids.  We also brought some chocolate fudge cupcakes with a cream cheese frosting.  There was another loaf of banana bread that I baked and kept in the freezer, I brought it also. Now I will have to get busy and start baking again.  This weekend our friends from Kelowna and they will teach Jeff how to make this awesome healthy bread that they make.  I am asking Jeff to learn it because I am not very good with anything that has yeast. LOL.

Since I ended up with 4 egg yolks, it was perfect time to make this flan.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Wholesome Wednesday - Our new favorite eatery

The name: WINGS Tap and Grill.  The location: Vernon, BC.  Reason for trying: we were headed for the Match Bar and Grill which is located inside the Casino in Vernon one Sunday afternoon.  We sat at the bar for a few minutes then waited and waited - the bar tender was by himself and never acknowledge us, so we left.  Right across from this place was the WINGS.  We were greeted by the bartender, sat in the bar and a couple of minutes later we were enjoying a very spicy Caesar drink. I also ask if they can switched one of the TV to the Tennis game which they did very quickly and had it on two screen.  Shortly after we ordered our food were delivered in front of us in less than 20 minutes.  Jeff and I decided this was going to be our new go to place.  Last weekend we return to the same place and although a different bartender, our drink was there within a couple of minutes.  We ordered the special which Jeff and I shared and tried a new flavor of their wings (Canadian Maple syrup rub). Of course I took some photos to share.  The food arrived quickly and it was hot.  We finished our meal and really enjoyed our one hour food and drink experience.  We know we will come back and try some of the other dishes in their menu.  Wednesday and Sunday are their half price wings. If you are ever in the area, you have to stop by.  

Flaming Caesar

Canadian maple syrup dry rub on wings

The special, Hawaiian bowl with chicken, pineapple and stir fried veggies over rice.

Monday, August 28, 2017

Mixture Monday - Can this be real?

Sometimes I wonder if I can actually grow plants, flowers and maybe even a tree without killing it on the first week.  You have seen the orchids that I had from the house in San Jose. With our new home, there's only a small portion of the front yard that you can plant and we have a small piece of fake grass.  At the back is pretty much going uphill and very rocky. Last weekend I decided to add some other plant to the collection.  I painted the rectangular planter box in our deck in the back.  Jeff putt up some black metal hangers for three hanging pots.  I noticed the other day that the nice red mums that I got for the front porch was looking sad and some are drying up.  I checked with the watering boy (Jeff) if he remembered to water them.  He actually did but I think it needs a little more since the weather was getting a bit warm.  Yesterday when I checked, it was back and alive again. This week I will have to try a different place to get a couple more perennials (one for the backyard and the other for the hanging pot).  Maybe there's still hope for me to take care of plants and watch them thrive.

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Soulful Saturday - To Gino on your 36th birthday

For this the 36th birthday of my son, G, I decided to plant another tree.  A few years ago, I planted a Dwarf Alberta Spruce as a suggestion by my BFF Percy.  Unfortunately we were unable to take it with us when we move to our new home, so this morning we got up early and head on to Home Depot and bought exactly the same one.  There was a big pot that was left in our backyard and I painted it red a few days ago.  Today, this is how I am celebrating his birthday by planting a tree, a memory tree.  I will watch it grow slowly in the pot and hopefully it will survive the winters and with Jeff being in charge of watering, I know it will thrive.  Since it won't be a birthday celebration without a cake, I was a little edgy and had to be busy.  I made some regular cupcakes, mini cupcakes and a small birthday cake for G.  So no sad poem today. Instead we will just remember all the good times with him.

While searching for a song for today, I found a CD that my son had, it was dated May 2008 and I was surprised that this song was included in music mix.  I remember when my sister was babysitting my son, she use to play some of the old songs for him. 

Friday, August 25, 2017

Freehand Friday - What happens when there's no TV

So what actually happens when you cannot watch TV?  Well for us it was perfect timing since we had to get our new home in order.  Every day we listened to the radio for some news and some music to get us working at home.  After a while we didn't mind it at all, of course we still had our phone to check some news on Flip Board and I usually check Pinterest.  Although there was no TV we were still connected to the world because we have our phone that includes data.  While Jeff does what he needs to do to get the house in order with regards to internet, cable, electricity, etc.  I made sure the kitchen was functional the first night we arrived.  The next day I unpacked and organized all the cupboards and drawers in the kitchen as well as the fridge and freezer.  After a week we're almost back to normal except for a few things which was unimportant.  The second week my room was ready for sewing, crafting, ironing, and whatever I wanted to do except no internet, so no blogging.  Here's some of the things I have completed and there's a lot more on my list.

The red pillow was from our former living room, I added a piece of fabric and embroidered the design.
Left side of the stool

Right side of the stool. 
Top of the stool.