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Category: Vintage Concierge

A day at the spa…and THM (S) sweets!

There’s nothing quite like a day at the spa. It’s even better when you can trade some “baking expertise” with a dip in the hot tub complete with a delightful cup of coffee and time with my sister.  OK, technically she’s my cousin, but whatever.  Check out this beautiful space!  🙂


The introduction of Trim Healthy Mama to newbies is always fun (for me).  I feel like I’ve been plugged into a supercharged outlet of enthusiasm.  We spent the morning together, my sister and her beautiful daughter, and baked up a storm.  Truth be told, I didn’t really do anything except for taste test with great enthusiasm!

You can find the recipe for the Cry No More Brownies on page 314 and the Raspberry Glosted Muffins on page 285. Isn’t it amazing that food that looks and tastes THIS good is on PLAN?

If you want to learn more about THM, visit Trim Healthy Mama. I could go on and on (and I do to almost anyone that will stop and listen to me for five minutes).

Love always,



My favourite breakfast EVER – THM (S)

My favourite breakfast EVER ever is a smidge of bacon bits, with two eggs, zucchini and spinach in the cast iron frying pan.   It’s a solid THM (S) breakfast and will sustain me right until lunch.   I added spices that I love (garlic, italian seasoning and pepper), then topped with nutritional yeast and a little parmesan cheese.

BreakfastI added some Silver Hills toast for my love (for a delightful crossover) and voila.  Breakfast.   THM SO doesn’t need to be complicated!!!

To learn more about THM, visit Trim Healthy Mama.   I could go on and on (and I do to almost anyone that will stop and listen to me for five minutes).

Love always,


If you’re Dutch, you’ll understand….

I know.   Tired of hearing me go on and on about THM right?   Listen up Dutch community.   It’s time to talk seriously about cake and coffee.

This delight comes straight from the Netherlands, and is called ‘Boterkoek’, or Buttercake.   Roll the R…there you go….NOW you’ve got it!!!

I have made countless desserts for my love since we GOP (got on plan).   He has been most gracious for everything we’ve tried to date but the odd time I get a…ummm…its ok.   That’s code for “I love you so, but you don’t need to make that again on my behalf”.  This recipe is a SHOW stopper.   His eye’s light up, yes, absolutely yes I’d like dessert!    I’ve made it twice in three days already.   Did I mention there’s no sugar?

Go right NOW and visit The Northern Nester to snag this recipe!  Stop reading!  Go.  NOW!  This lovely gem can be on the table in 45 minutes.  I promise you, your Dutch relatives will ask for a second slice and another cup of super strong coffee.

I posted a picture of my dessert plate.   Note that it’s empty.   You took too long.

eet smakelijk!

Love always,



Yup, an empty plate.  I ate it all.  Why on EARTH are you still here?   I told you to go right NOW and visit The Northern Nester!

We LOVE to snack!

That time post dinner but pre-sleepyville!   I love snacktime!   It wasn’t uncommon to have Party Mix or Skinny Pop in the house for times just like this.    My issue has always been portion control.  🙂

Well….MOVE over and make some room for Crunch Puffs!

With a bit of additional energy, these Crunch Puffs do the trick.   The right mix of egg whites, xantham gum, baking blend and psyllium along with spices of choice make a delightful FP snack!

You will need the THM cookbook, then flip to Page 460 for the full list of ingredients and instructions.   To learn more about THM, visit Trim Healthy Mama.   I could go on and on (and I do to almost anyone that will stop and listen to me for five minutes).

There’s another benefit to all of this home made snacking business.   I can dive into these crunchy bits with reckless abandon…as I completely control the salt content!

So, I’m unsure of what we will be watching on Netflix this evening but I’m POSITIVE about what’s going into my snack bowl!

Love always,



Screenshot 2016-09-11 15.53.41

Camping. Day 7. August 4, 2016

It’s Thursday. We’ve done the whole 10km thing for the last few days so we decided today that it was a feet up kind of day. We drank coffee and enjoyed a lovely bacon and eggs breakfast. More coffee. Read for a few hours. Did a few dishes. Made more coffee.

We did head to the dog beach today so we could all cool down a bit. Roxy ran after her ball like the puppy she thinks she is. She’s pretty much been passed out for the balance of the afternoon. Even the evil chipmunks can’t tempt her to chase them. She’s done. Between the exercise she’s receiving here at Algonquin and the lack of treats from the grandparents she’s actually dropped a few pounds. Yes Dad. We see you. Roxy can still outrun any dog her junior for that ball. An absolute joy to watch.

It was a gorgeous hot summer day. I have absolutely nothing to show for August 4th which is AOK with me. Ron has this to show for a quiet afternoon. LOVE!


PS. We are out of bacon.

Love always,


Camping. Day 6 – August 3, 2016

We’ve settled into our camping groove faster than ever. On our first full morning at Algonquin, I felt like we’d already been on site for a week. Zero stress. In fact, someone may need to come and yell at me as my blood pressure is barely registering. There are a few things that contributed to that feeling but I’d like to think that the trailer organization had a lot to do with it.

I’m a fusser. Always have been. Always will be. I’ve resolved that about myself long ago. The difference with this trailer versus the tent trailer is that there is a place. For EVERYTHING. The storage spaces all work and fit nicely into my OCD. All but one.

I’d say it drives my crazy but in truth, it’s only mildly annoying. The cupboard is long and narrow and uses up that lovely space between the wall and the fridge. I almost always need a flashlight to get to the back of it (ThruNite to the rescue!) It’s now 8:00 pm after a beautiful day and I have the urge to organize. Who needs that when it’s time to put your feet up and chill? Apparently, I do!!!

The pantry is the place I dig into as the days of our vacation draw to a close. Brown rice and Dreamfields pasta, chicken stock and almond milk, peanut butter, spices and the other shelf stable items. It houses our beer, wine, junk food, some baking supplies to ensure that when the chocolate cake monster strikes, I’m ready. The problem with the pantry, it’s has four shelves when it could easily have six. Some of the shelves have almost half of the height, completely empty. I suppose it’s like a purse. The bigger it is; the more stuff I’ll be tempted to take along.

We have a few weekend camping trips left but I know that I’m soon going to have to tidy things up and (gasp) start planning for the Thanksgiving camping extravaganza. Now that I’m almost done this post, and had a half hour of cleaning/reorganizing, I already know what I’m going to leave at home next time we venture out. And I need to go talk to Ron about building me a solution for my pantry conundrum. Oh honey!!!!!

Love always,


Camping. Day 4 – August 1, 2016

We figured out the internet here at Algonquin.

We love being outdoors in the sun(shade) however, the internet connection is TERRIBLE. So, my ingenious dear almost husband packs his cell phone into a protective bag, ties it to a rope than tosses it into one of the huge trees on our campsite. Voila! Hotspot for a few minutes while we check in with the famjam (plus post a blog article or two). Did I mention he’s not only handy but spectacularly handsome!


Love always,


Instant Pot Recipe – Cauliflower

Fact. You can steam a whole head of cauliflower in chicken stock in the Instant pot in less than 5 minutes. Transfer to a roasting dish, add cheese (and next time bacon) and broil that puppy. Yum.

I might need an intervention.   An IP intervention.  I’m googling that, it has to be a thing.


This is so good and SO easy, I could seriously eat cauliflower for breakfast.

Love always,


Socks & Cutlery

I was chatting with a good friend over a steaming cup of coffee this past week, musing about the beautiful day, the events of the last week and the inevitable topic of mismatched socks and cutlery drawers came up.  OK.  Maybe not inevitable for some people.   I’ll admit, my OCD is showing.

Firstly.  Socks are a mystery.  Honestly!  How is it possible there are so many mismatched soles out there.   Other than buying 365 similar pairs, then bringing out only 7 at a time, I’m not sure how to resolve this for the world.    An EPIC sock dilemma!

The cutlery drawer however…makes me crazy.   After a number of GREAT housesitting gigs, then a combined mismatched household, I couldn’t take it a minute longer.   Every.  Single.   Fork/Knife/Spoon was donated to the local BFM.   I didn’t even consider taking an afternoon to sort and match things up for the camping gear.  #passionateaboutcutlerynoapologies

I bought four sets.  Two for iTRAILER - Cutlerynside, two for the camping gear.  Done.   I put it off for so long that once I finally freed myself of the mess of the drawers, I couldn’t believe I’d held on for so long.   There are definitely situations that time and energy can solve.    For me personally, this wasn’t one of them.

All of this cutlery-drawer-freedom has allowed more time to contemplate the great sock dilemma of 2016.

Love always,