Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Arts in the Square

Over the weekend, I took part as a vendor at an event called Arts in the Square in Oakville.  It takes place every Saturday until October and the past Saturday was my first time as a vendor at the event.  It is truly a showcase for local artists and crafters of handmade goodies.  Held in the fresh (rather hot and stifling, to be honest, last Saturday) air, it offers an opportunity to peruse the work of local artists, do a little shopping and listen to some live music.

My Table

I had a great day.  i not only spread a little more "handmade soap love" but I also looked at art, spoke to the artists themselves and listened to some great music.  As much as I had planned on ending the day with a glass of wine, 7 hours in the heat made me slight unsuitable to show myself in public on the way home.  Instead I ended it with a glass of ice tea and a cool bath.

looking forward to my next day at  Arts in the square on August 27th.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Let Them Eat Sorbet Part 2

Several people have requested the recipe for the raspberry sorbet so here it is.

One word of advice:  Plan better than I did.  The day that I made this, I had visions of enjoying a bowl of sorbet after supper as the boys enjoyed ice cream.  I did not fully read the recipe before hand and did not start preparing the sorbet until 3 in the afternoon, thus explaining why I had a little with breakfast the next morning.  Although I do have to confess, I had a bowl at 10 at night because I just couldn't wait until the following day.  It was good.


  • 2/3 cup water
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 pound frozen  unsweetened raspberries
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
Prepare a simple syrup with the sugar and water:  Place the water and sugar in a saucepan over low heat, stirring to dissolve sugar, 3-5 minutes.  boil the mixture for 1 minute then remove from heat.  Pour the syrup into a heatproof container and refrigerate for 1 hour.

Place the raspberries and cooled syrup in a saucepan, bring to a boil and then simmer for 2-3 minutes.  cool for few minutes then transfer to blender or food processor and process until pureed.  Using a fine mesh strainer, strain the mixture to remove the seeds.  Add lemon juice, stir, cover and place in freezer.

When sorbet is completely frozen (3-4 hours), remove from freezer and let stand at room temperature until partially thawed.  Transfer to food processor and process to break up ice crystals.  (This is the point where I enjoyed a big bowl of creamy, soft sorbet.)  Place sorbet back into pan and refreeze for at least 3 hours and up to several days.

This recipe is found in The Joy of Vegan Baking by Colleen Patrick-Goudreau.

I finished the last of my batch a couple of nights ago and will soon be making another batch.

Happy weekending!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Let Them Eat Sorbet

It's hot.  It's humid.  It's stifling.  But I'm okay with it because I have homemade raspberry sorbet.

And yes, I ate it with my toast.  Just a spoonful.

Monday, July 18, 2011

From My Soap Kitchen

It's been awhile since I last showed you what I have been mixing up soap-wise in my kitchen.  So I thought I would give you a little peek today.

First up, oatmeal cookie soap scented with oatmeal fragrance oil and cinnamon essential oil with a little colloidal oatmeal for the final touch.

Oatmeal Cookie Soap
Next up is my Tea Girl soap which was inspired by a blog friend and her love of all things tea.  Made with Earl Grey tea and scented with lavender and bergamot essential oils.

Tea Girl Soap
Everyone loves a little chocolate.

Chocolate Swirl Soap

Finally, my newest soap is Midsummer's Daydream scented with lavender, peppermint and pink grapefruit essential oils.  The pretty pink colour is due to the addition of pink clay.

Midsummer's Daydream Soap

Not only have I been busy making soap, I have also been dabbling with some new products.

Body Butter

My whipped body butter contains cocoa butter, mango butter and sweet almond oil.  It has the consistency of room temperature butter and melts into the skin, leaving a nice glow.

And my latest creation:

Chocolate Cupcake Bath Bomb
The frosting is bubble bath and the cupcake base is a chocolate bath bomb containing cocoa powder, sweet almond oil and chocolate fragrance oil.  A little decadent perhaps but a heck of a lot of fun.

Friday, July 15, 2011

An Ode to Home

We returned home last night from a little family trip, exploring a little more of Ontario.

Before moving to Ontario 17 years ago, I admit that when I thought of Ontario, I thought of Toronto and that was it.  When Mike and I moved here to Guelph from New Brunswick (he's from New Brunswick and I am from Newfoundland.  We met while at Mount Allison University.), we were overwhelmed by the number of people and the pace of life, much faster than the pace to which both of us were accustomed.  For several years, we ached to be home, for we did not consider Ontario home but rather the place where we lived.

And then we began exploring this province where we now found ourselves.  And as we explored, we realized just how big Ontario is and just how diverse and beautiful.

Beautiful.  Did I mention that this place is beautiful?

The above is a photo of the gondola we took to the top of Blue Mountain near Collingwood.  The boys loved it and I was terrified the entire time.  Images of us plunging to our death flitted through my head the entire time.  I think I managed to mask my fear from them fairly well though.  But maybe not.

With each road trip we take, I fall in love with another part of Ontario.  At the end of each trip, I realize a little more that we are home.

Sunday, July 10, 2011


On the warm July river
head back

upside down river
for a roof

slowly paddling
towards an estuary between trees

from Inner Tube by Michael Ondaatje

Friday, July 8, 2011

Thinking of Her

I made this crocheted stone a couple of months ago for a friend.  I wanted to let her know I was thinking about her.  Unfortunately, a postal strike held this pretty little thing in limbo for awhile.

It is finally on its way to its new home.

Margie's pattern found here.

It was a rainy day the day I took photos of the stone.

Monday, July 4, 2011

I am Her

While at a store yesterday picking out labels, I forgot what kind of printer we have.  As luck would have it, I had my cell phone with me and was able to call Mike.  (I don't generally have my cell phone with me but Mike has been a little more insistent lately about me using it.  Safety issues and such.  As a result, I am not really familiar with how it works.)  After getting an answer to my question, I went to turn the phone off but couldn't.  It seemed to be "stuck."  I went to the cash to pay for my purchase, apologizing to the young sales clerk for being distracted due to my cell phone.  She kindly offered to help and I readily accepted her help.  "That's okay," she said.  "I help my mom all the time."  Crap.  I am no longer the cool (in my eyes) young woman who snubs her nose at technology while holding on tightly to a pen and paper.  I am the old lady who doesn't know how to work her VCR.  You know her, right?  Your grandmother, your mom.  Well, now you know another one.