With close to one million Canadians in need of food banks during the summer months, while the winter holidays are the traditional season of giving, food banks also need support in the summer. Food insecurity doesn’t take a summer break. Food bank organizations across Canada are relying on the support of donors to help end summer hunger.
The Every Plate Full began on May 28 and aims to raise awareness and donations to fill this seasonal gap. Are you up for the challenge? Are you up for the challenge? Could you feed yourself on just $1.00 a day? This is something food banks can do thanks to their partnerships with sponsors across the country, and the strong purchasing power they hold.
At food banks across the country, a $1 donation provides three meals.We challenge Canadians to feed themselves on $1 a day. Need ideas? Check out www.everyplatefull.cato get you started, and even if you can’t make it work share your story on social media. Word of mouth matters! Continue reading →
You’ve probably guessed from my weekly IG stories, the delivered meals from Hello Fresh have been going well. I’ve gotten so many questions about the service, so I thought I’d come on here and tell you the good, the bad and the delicious.
Here’s my Hello Fresh Meal Delivery Q&A:
Are you paid to talk about Hello Fresh? NO! Hello Fresh does not pay me to promote their service. They have in the past, let me try meals for free BUT I have spent my own money on the service because we loved the meals.
Why a meal delivery service? And do you like the meals? Especially in the winter months, I need help getting healthy ingredients to our house. Sometimes the weather is so bad, I can’t get out with the little guys to do a proper grocery shop. We love Hello Fresh. We, as a family have only disliked 2 meals and we have been getting 3 meals a week since November. The recipes are amazing 95% of the time and you get every single ingredient you need to make it. We order the Family Box, it gives us enough food for dinner and left overs for lunch the next day. It’s really taken the pressure off meal time prep for me.
What don’t you like about Hello Fresh? I did have one box arrive days late, although it was an isolated incident, it was a big inconvenience for us. We had paid for meals for that week but they didn’t arrive to make use of them for our working Tuesday-Friday. And by the time the box arrived the produce wasn’t looking great. It was due to a winter storm, so I had to cut them a little slack on that one. And customer service refunded me a portion to cover the ruined produce.
Would you suggest Hello Fresh to a friend? What do you think of the competitors? I’ve paid for Chef’s Plate twice, both times my box was miss-delivered. When they finally got it to me, the box’s contents were rancid and I did not receive a refund. I was disappointed with the customer service and never actually got to try a successfully delivered meal box. However, my parents get that service and like it… so that was just my experience.
Yes, I would suggest Hello Fresh to a friend or family member! Use my promo code NORTHERNS for 40% off your first box! It’s definitely tasty and it saves you a trip to the grocery store. The recipes are creative, I keep the recipes we love for later use.
Every year is the same, we have an afternoon of baking in hopes of making a large quantity of my Mom’s famous sugar cookies with a simple butter cream frosting. It’s a family tradition to make something yummy for the people we love… and I LOVE to do it together. This year was made even easier with the addition of my new GE 6.8 Cu. Ft. Freestanding Double Oven Gas Range. We had both ovens going with so much rack space for cookie trays, we breezed through our baking this year. The Air convection systems uses an innovative fan that rotates one way, then reverses direction to allow heated air to circulate evenly around whatever you may be cooking. Our range is easily one of my favourite features from our kitchen reno update late last year. This GE Gas Range makes everyday cooking easy for us as a family. I love the edge-to-edge cooktop.
We’ve always used a variation of The Joy of Cooking Sugar cookie recipe. It’s fast, easy and fool proof for a non-baker. Here’s what you’ll need to do:
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. In my case, preheat BOTH ovens. Don’t forget to lightly grease a few cookie sheets.
1 cup unsalted butter, soft is best.
2/3 cup white sugar
1 large egg
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar until very fluffy and well blended. Add in the egg, baking powder, salt, and vanilla until evenly incorporated. Stir in flour until the mixture is well blended and almost smooth.
Cook for approximately 7 minutes. Depends on the accuracy of your oven temperature. So I like checking around 6 minutes to make sure you don’t burn any batches.
Remove from baking sheet immediately to start cooling.
Now to do the frosting.
In medium bowl, mix powdered sugar and butter with spoon. Stir in a dash vanilla extract and 1 tablespoon of the milk.
Slowly add milk and beat to make frosting smooth and spreadable. If frosting is too thick, beat in more milk, a few drops at a time. Instead of food colouring, I used a heaping spoonful of our fav raspberry jam for both flavour and color!
Here are my insider tips, tricks and hacks for experiencing Disney like a seasoned pro:
A stroller at Disney is your best friend, do not attend without one.Even if your kids are a little too big to use it for it’s obvious purpose. It’s where you will store everything you need for your family throughout the day. And it’ll help you save money in the park on purchases like expensive drinks, snacks, blankets, extra clothing, and extra footwear. You are allowed a small soft shell cooler and a stroller through security… but no selfie sticks! They will be taken away as a forewarning. I suggest filling your stroller with drinks from Target or Walgreens. On average a drink within Disney will cost you between $5-$8! When you can get a pack of 12 beverages at Target for the price of 1. You’ll need a place to store snacks and layers of clothing to put on/ or off throughout the day depending on weather. Especially if you are starting during the day and staying until the evening, the temperature will drop. Strolling parking is available everywhere! Simply park your stroller in a designated spot leaving it to go about your business in that section of the park. It’s as simply as that. I tie a bright coloured bandana or balloon to ours to find it. There are a lot of strollers! A stroller will hold everything you need, help you not make pricey purchases and make you hands free to have fun!
Target is one of the best places to buy just about anything! Stock up on cheap snacks, drinks and apparel. Any Target near Disney will have an a Disney related souvenir and clothing section. Anything from sweatshirts, collectable pins, hats, tees and sweatpants can be found at approximately 1/3 the cost outside the park. They even had Disney rain gear for rides like Splash Mountain. In the park it’ll cost you approximately $8 for one Disney rain poncho, while Target had them for $2. We go on our day of arrival to score many of the expensive extras seen in the park. Plus, it’s a great way to pick up souvenirs at a fraction of the cost. By saving on snacks and tiny extras we were about to let the kids indulge little bit in the park and find amazing toys at the many gift shops.
Work the Fast Pass System!A Fast Pass will save your life with young children that cannot wait in the long lineups. If you are new to Disney, there will be two lines: Regular and Fast Pass holders. Basically Fast Passes skip almost the entire line. The new system has an app that can be purchased for $10 a day and you can do your fast passes electronically through the app. If you were doing Disney for one day it can be relatively convenient to pay the $10 per person per day for the convenience of the new fast pass app. But for us we did Disney several days in a row and we were a large family group. Each person in your group has to pay that $10. For us we could not justify an extra hundred dollars a day to use an app. Instead we would designate one adult as the fast pass holder. They would carry all of our tickets, hustle to a separate section of the park to obtain fast passes for our entire group while we waited in line for a longer ride. By the time they returned with our fast passes they would join us in line. We found the system to work well for our large group, we rarely waited longer than 20 minutes for any given ride. Please note, some rides are more popular compared to others. Unless you get a fast pass before noon for many of the “popular rides,” there will not be any more fast passes available that day. California Adventure: Guardians of the Galaxy, Toy Story and Cars.Disneyland: It’s a Small World, Madahorn, Starwars, and the Haunted Mansion. If a ride is displaying a wait time of 15 minutes or less do not waste a Fast Pass on it. Instead try to use your Fast Passes on rides that have between 30 to 60 minute wait times. You can check the wait times on the app for free or it’s displayed at the front of the ride. Get a Fast Pass for a busy ride, thing on the less busy rides in that section until your Fast Pass window starts.
If you have time, there are several Disney Store outlets in the area.We scored a handful of limited edition stuffed animals, jackets and action figures for 70% off the park prices. If an Outlet day is on the agenda, why not? You will not be disappointed by the prices. Plus, stores like Coach, as an example sometimes will carry limited edition Disney bags and accessories on sale. Luxury Disney does exist if that floats your boat.
Book your dinners well in advance, reservations are key or you will eat dinner at grab and go locations only.Many popular restaurants book up months in advance, especially when your a group of 4 or larger. By saving on breakfast, lunches and snacks by bringing a cooler splurging on a few dinners within the park was totally worth it. Many of them are an experience within themselves, let alone awesome food. And if you are looking for a beer or a wine… those are only available at a few locations in California Adventures, Disneyland does not serve alcohol. Here are a few restaurants to target for reservations: Blue Bayou, Carnation Cafe, Mendocino Terrace at the Golden Vine Winery, Plaza Inn, and Ariel’s Grotto. Continue reading →
Cheers to the New Year, I thought I’d share with you a refreshing spritzer I created with my gal pal Diana of 204park. It’s sophisticated fresh and light… if you’re a Champagne or Prosecco Cocktail lover this recipe is for you. Cheers!
What you’ll need:Grapefruit, 1 lemon, St. Germain Elderflower liqueur, a bottle of you favourite Prosecco.
What you’ll need to do:
Pop that bottle!
Cut grapefruit into wedges. Place one in each glass.
Add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice to each glass.
Add 1 oz. Chilled St. Germain Elderflower
Topwith approximately 4 oz. Chilled Prosecco
Optional: Add ice if your liquid is room temperature. Or freeze extra grapefruit wedges!