How to Host Thanksgiving: Do’s and Don’ts

Here in the beautiful North, Thanksgiving is just three short weeks away.

In our home, this fall has been our absolute busiest ever (watch this space for a huge announcement coming soon) and there are just not enough hours in the day. Every day.

I know you’re also in the thick of the autumn hustle and bustle, which is why we need to start organizing ourselves for Thanksgiving sooner, rather than later.

Thanksgiving has been one of my favourite subject to write about from the moment I began blogging. True fact: this fruit and herb stuffing recipe from nearly a decade ago is still my favourite accompaniment to roast turkey. And since we’re deep diving into the archives, I think it is time to bring back this apple pie. Oh and the pumpkin bread pudding, too.

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17 best recipes to close out summer

It’s my favourite time of year to shop at the local markets.

The aisles are lined with baskets piled high with two-inch cucumbers and plump Roma tomatoes, inspiring me to add pickles and salsa to my canning list for the weekend.

Clara picks out a pint of deep red raspberries and I reach for a hefty cantaloupe. We can both get our favourites, for a few more weeks, anyway.

I try to resist the beautiful winter squash, piled six high in wooden crates, and pass by the emerald Brussels sprouts. I know they will be around for a while. Instead I turn my attention to sweet corn, small radishes and blueberries, which will be finishing soon.

Everything is at its peak. The melons have never been sweeter. The peaches are supple and slip free of their pit with a twist of the wrist. Cauliflower has never looked whiter, or bigger, for that matter. Broccoli is $.99 a head. A steal. We fill our basket to overflowing.

For a few more weeks, we’re celebrate the last of the summer produce. It’s too good to miss.

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A long weekend, camp coffee and my bannock recipe

This post is sponsored by Coleman Canada and Canadian Tire.

It’s the Friday before the long weekend and for once, I don’t have any lavish entertaining plans in the works. Instead I’m slotting in some down time for our family, preferably around the backyard fire pit.

Back to school week wiped us all out. The house looks like a tornado swept through it and everyone is a little emotional with all the changes. While it will be good to get into a routine next week, I’m taking the next three days to slow things down.

I want to savour the simple pleasures in life this weekend, like a cup of coffee brewed outdoors and a skillet of tender bannock cooked over an open fire.

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Weekend Links + Photos: Sweet Summertime

There is a landslide of school supplies taking over our family room floor. Classes start on Tuesday and it’s time to sharpen our focus for another school year.

I’ve never been the mum who gleefully abandons the beach pails and picnic baskets to greet the school bus with cheers. I adore having the children around all summer, despite the challenges of juggling work (me) and play (all of us) for weeks on end, so the end of August is rather bittersweet.

This fall will be extra poignant, as Clara – teeny, tiny, little Clara – will be heading off to kindergarten. It seems like she just turned one not long ago, but that goes to show how quickly they really do grow up.

It’s been an incredible summer though, hasn’t it?

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Fresh tomato + peach Caprese salad with wild blueberries & thyme

I‘ve been enjoying a tomato salad nearly every day this month; it’s effortless eating when the tomatoes are ripening on the vine in my backyard and the kitchen garden is packed with herbs two feet tall.

Often the tomatoes are paired with briny olives and salty feta in an easy Greek salad and other times I dice them up for a Kale Tabbouleh with Cucumber, Mint and Garlic Scapes. Another favourite – and real crowd pleaser – is my Bloody Caesar Shrimp Salad, which combines tomatoes, celery and shrimp into a tangy dish perfect for quick Sunday lunch.

A recent creation that proved to be most delicious was the addition of sliced, fresh Niagara peaches to a Caprese salad. I served this riff on a classic at the start of the harvest dinner we hosted on the homestead a few weekends ago, and promised you the recipe. It’s a salad I serve at every harvest dinner, mostly because it is so delicious when prepared in season, but also because it is very easy.

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