Dutch Oven Irish Soda Bread~

I have really been enjoying the Williams Sonoma Instagram page. Some of the recipes have been really good. I decided to try this bread recipe. It’s called Dutch Oven Irish Soda Bread, it was easy and it was sooooo good. It was almost like a large raisin tea biscuit.

Here is what you need:

4 cups of all purpose flour

1/2 cup of granulated sugar

1/2 tsp of baking powder

1/2 tsp of baking Soda

1 tsp of salt

1/2 cup of butter, cold/ 1 stick

2 large eggs

1 and 1/2 cups of buttermilk

1 cup of dried currents

To Make:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F

Mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking Soda and salt in a large mixing bowl.

Cut cold butter into thin slices and add into flour-sugar mixture.

Mix the butter into the flour~ it will be slightly lumpy, with a similar coarse consistency to cornmeal.

Whisk together the buttermilk and eggs into a small mixing bowl

Gradually mix the egg and buttermilk into the flour

Mix until all liquid is absorbed. The dough will be slightly wet and not smooth.

Mix the currants into the dough by hand.

On a lightly floured surface or piece of parchment paper, shape dough into a large round ball shape.

Place the ball of dough into a greased Dutch oven with lid on.

After 30 minutes, remove the lid and bake for an additional 15 minutes until baked through.

Allow to cool slightly before removing from the Dutch oven by flipping over onto a plate.

Best served warm (with Irish coffee) but will keep well for if wrapped.

Enjoy~

100 Things I Want To Teach My Daughter #56 The worst separation of all is that which occurs between a person’s income and their lifestyle~

OHHH Fox! This is so very important, especially with your generation in which everyone want something “RIGHT NOW”. You are so use to getting things almost immediately and without seeing the consequences of those actions. Take for example Amazon and/or online shopping. You easily registrar a credit card to shopping accounts and shop away. Not seeing the damage for a whole month. That my friend is dangerous.

It’s also very challenging to stay in your own lane when wanting to “keep up with the Jones.” As you get older you will see what I mean. I suspect things are changing in our society. It’s a lot harder for your generation to buy homes now. So you may see less and less of that kind of behaviour. Many more couples are renting or buying townhouses and or condo’s. Single detached homes are not near as important as they had been at my time.

Keep your income and lifestyle within its means. Trust me when I say this. Don’t become consumed with “wanting” things. Enjoy the things you earn, take pride in your hard work and rewards. If I could give you any advice fox it would be to put your money in to travel. While you are young and figuring out life, travel.

Dad and I have been downsizing this past year. It’s so overwhelming to see where we have put much of our money. We’ve overspent on “things”….stuff that I no longer want, need or desire. What a waste. So all that money is now being taken to second hand stores and given away. Each season I would buy more and more stuff to accent our home, our pets and even you children. Don’t get me wrong, i loved it! I LOVED having our home decorated at Christmas, Easter, Halloween and birthdays…but what I am saying is if you can’t afford those things..don’t go into debt trying too.

Sometimes Less is More…and as i am getting older I am learning this. So take it from me now….don’t put money into things that don’t bring you a feeling that lasts longer than a season. Put that money towards things that benefit you and your family in the long run.

The same applies to the opposite of this, if you have a substantial income don’t live life too frugally. Enjoy your money. Don’t just buy things that make you happy, DO things that make your happier. Trips, travel, donating, volunteer your time, take days off work, rest and pamper yourself.

If I were to start out living my life in todays world, and if I knew what I know now. I would do things a little different. Like I said, I would buy less stuff for the house. I would spend more money of travel, education and taking care of myself. I would buy you less but take you out more. Maybe put more money into activities? Maybe more art classes or music lessons? I’m not sure, you really did have all that. But you also had a ton of toys that you didn’t really play much with. Listen to your children, watch what they play with..even if it’s something you don’t feel is worth it. I just bought you things to fill your play room, I bought things that other little girls were playing with. Somethings you never even opened. MY bad.

Always remember your money is hard earned. It is something to not be taken lightly. Be resourceful, attentive and protecting of it. Be generous, kind and willing to be open minded to change.

I hope this brings you some insight. Sometimes I have a hard time thinking of you as a full grown adult with children. I know the day will come eventually. And I hope all these little words of wisdom can be of service. Love you girl~

Mom ~

February 28th~

100 Things I Want To Teach My Daughter..#84 You are no less a woman when you’re in sweat pants….

#84 You are no less a woman when you’re in sweat pants and hoody than a woman in stilettos and a leather skirt.

Although I believe you must learn to wear some sexy stiletto’s, on a really important night  a gorgeous pair can make you feel amazing. 

With that said my darling, wearing a comfy pair of Roots track pants, over sized hoody and a pair of Tom’s should never make you feel any less a woman. Be confident enough to walk proud throughout town sporting a comfy cozy outfit and not be embarrassed to be seen. 

You are beautiful, you are stunning in all the things you wear. 

Remember this when you do find yourself standing beside the stiletto wearing, sexy lady in a 7/11 buying a package of cigarettes while paying for her gas. She is having her moment, let her have it. This is her time to shine, her time to feel sexy. Empower her, lift her up for she may be hiding the most insecure thoughts going on in her own mind at that moment. Find the ability in  yourself to compliment her, as hard as it may be in that time, think of her…even though you may be in your gym clothes or track pants and sweat shirt. Tell her you love her shoes…make her feel confident, and I promise my baby girl you will come away feeling so much better about yourself. This is a gift to not only give to her, but it will make you feel even taller than she is standing beside you sporting those heels. 

and smile~

Always smile, it lets her know you’ve got her back. We need to encourage one another as woman, not discourage eachother. 

Most importantly K always remember it doesn’t matter what you wear, as long as you feel confident and comfortable with who you are…no shoes can change that. 

I mean seriously fox, when you look like this beauty…you can wear anything and feel smashing~

Happiest girls are the prettiest~
Audrey Hepburn

Well my lovelies, until tomorrow good night and god bless! xo

February 27~ My uncle passed away

It is actually my birthday today, I turned 48 years old. Sadly my uncle died today. He had cancer. He was given the fatal diagnosis Dec 25th, were he was told he had 6-12 weeks.

He died February 27th, 8 weeks was what he had. He had his siblings with him till the very end. He was so blessed to have them. He will be missed dearly, my dad is going to feel such a loss. They were best friends.

Until next time, good night and god bless~

February 26th~One way you can help a friend~

This my friend is a loaded question. At certain times in my life I would probably answer this differently.

When I was a teenager I feel one way to have supported a friend would have been to go out and show them a good time. Weekends were meant for friends, I was so lucky to have experienced the times we did. Dancing, music, drinks and parties were always in play. Never a dull moment~

My group of friends had children very young. We were all pretty much 22-23 years old when we started our families. So I would say when I was in my twenties the best way to help a friend would have been to help out with their children. I did my best. I was not able to “babysit” often or help out in that way. My own hands were pretty darn full, I had a special needs, medically fragile child and a small daughter. So babysitting often was not something I was able to do. But what I did do was have sleepovers, pool parties and after noon get togethers. Our house was always full, it was wonderful. If friends needed to bring their kids over to blow off some steam then my house was the place for that. I still managed to have sleepovers, and sometimes my friends were able to take advantage of that free time. I did not have that privilege, there wasnt much of an opportunity for friends to take my children over night. We didnt get many breaks, unless my parents took them.

Today, the best way I can help a friend is too offer my time and understanding. Do not be judgemental. I try my very best to be there for my friends. Times have changed however, we have all grown into ourselves. Needing eachother has become less of on issue. We still manage to have fun times, we love to get together. But everyone has their own stuff going on. I hope they know however, if they need me I would be there. I am truly blessed, I’ve had some pretty amazing friends in my life too. I would not be who I am today with out them. Each one of them brings something different in to my life. That’s the best thing about friendships..they are all different, yet all so special.

Well my lovelies, until tomorrow good night and god bless~

100 Thing I Want To Teach My Son #94 I will always be there for you, no matter when or where~ February 25th

I hope you I know this. We at times can have heated discussions and not always see eye to eye. But regardless of any situation, I promise to always be there for you and always have your back.

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If I have learned one thing these past couple years it is to listen more and react after. I am working on that, I know I tend to “jump to conclusions” quick with you. I have no excuse, I guess maybe I may want what’s best for you but understanding what best for you is now your decision. That’s a hard pill to swallow.

You did pull from me a few years ago, you kinda pulled from all of us. I know you were dealing with your own stuff, we tried hard to understand that and give you the space you needed to deal with things in your own way. I feel with you doing that, you grew as a person emotionally and mentally but we were not a part of that. Understanding who you are today is a bit more challenging because we were not involved in the process of you figuring out your mental health and depression.

As a mom of course I have only wanted to “fix” all your hurt and pain. It’s not easy to accept the day you no longer can give a hug, do a craft or bring home MacDonalds Happy Meals to make you happy again. Parenting dosen’t come with a manual, especially parenting a young adult with certain mental health issues.

I guess what I’m trying to say, is it doesn’t matter where or when in life you need me…. I will always be there. I always have~

I may just need more direction and clarification now that you are older. Stepping on your toes doesn’t go over very well with you. I don’t like to assume there’s an issue and want to approach you. Dad is always telling me to “Leave him alone”…lol its only cause I worry. And obviously I want you to be happy. As a mom thats one of the most important parts..

If you need me, you need to tell me. I do my best to not be “overwhelming” in your life. But I do care, and I do love you. You may need to work on that a bit more. I need you to communicate with me when things are not good with you, and you have to be open and honest with me and tell me exactly what you need or expect. I would move the sun and the stars for you. I hope you know that~

Do not ever worry about judgement. We are past that. Judging is not who I am. I have no interest and “condemning” you or making you feel any less as a man if I don’t agree with something. I hope that became clear through the past year and all the pain, growth, tears and laughs that we experienced.

Regardless of my own thoughts and feelings I am learning to respect and trust in yours. I think that says a lot about our relationship. We’ve come along way baby! 🙂

Until next time,

Love Mom~

February 24th~ My birthday celebration

My actual birthday is February 27th, but in my extended family we usually celebrate one another the Sunday before our actual birthday. This past Sunday we celebrated my 48th, and this year I did something a little different.

I decided that instead of gifts, I wanted to have my family and friends donate to a local Toronto dog rescue called Redemption Paws.

I invited three friends to join us for dinner, and they very generously donated to the cause. My whole family donated, and I put up a donation page on Facebook with occurred 310.00 just with friends who supported. I was so happy~

My parents were here, both my children and Paul. My friends have little dogs as well, and I really wanted them all here. SO in total we had 6 dogs…3 of which were mine 🙂

My birthday was perfect, I had a wonderful time. My mom made cabbage rolls, I bought some chicken Parmesan, we had garlic bread and salad. It was delicious. I did not have a cake, instead we had cupcakes and donuts…both my favourite.

Overall we raised 710.00 for Redemption Paws within 24 hours. I think thats pretty good. Hopefully the money will go towards some of the beautiful dogs needing surgery. Or possibly towards travel costs for the rescuers who save dogs in other parts of the world.

It really was a perfect birthday, I couldn’t have asked for a better one. We shared many laughs, we danced in the kitchen and we even had a few tears…obviously happy ones~

Well my lovelies, I hope you are all well. Until tomorrow good night and god bless~