School lunch round-up on Simple Bites

Weekend links: Back-to-school edition

Full disclosure: this week I was at the beach with friends and our kids instead of recipe developing and preparing for the start of school.

Glorious warm weather and a desire to hold onto summer just a little bit longer kept me out of the kitchen, and hence, I have no snappy back-to-school post for you. A few local media outlets even reached out, wondering if I had new lunchbox inspiration to share, and I had to mumble something about still catching up from vacation (entirely true, by the way).

School starts on Monday for my boys and maybe next week I’ll kick into high gear with homemade everything for the lunchbox from muffins to applesauce, chicken nuggets to cereal bars. I’ll get there in my own time, although between you and me, my friend Elizabeth’s idea for a laid-back barbecue sounds like more fun right now. [Read more…]

Simple bites garden produce

Weekend links and photos

Happy weekend, friends. It’s going to be a productive one for us; after all, there must be some balance to all the pool parties and backyard barbecues of late.

Our July has officially reached cruising altitude and will continue to fly by until we decent into St. Johns, Newfoundland in a little less than two weeks time. There, amid the remote costal villages and scenic seascape hikes, we intent to unplug and connect with nature as a family.

If by chance there is anyone from Newfoundland and Labrador reading this blog, please drop me a note with your best suggestions for good eats, strong coffee…..and best views. I’m simply longing for an ocean view.

Until then, I’ve got cookbook edits to finish, a dozen errands to run and and family to pack up.  I simply must do something with all the basil in my garden before I go. Oh, and I should probably kick this poison ivy rash to the curb. Begone! Does anyone have a good natural remedy to share? Because Benadryl is currently slowing me way down during the day.

Poison ivy, to-do lists and packing aside, I’ve had a beautiful week. Here’s what I loved reading around the web. And below that, a few of my favourite photos for your dinner inspiration.

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Strawberry rhubarb pie header

Weekend links and photos

I know it’s been a sobering week for my readers in the United States and I feel deeply for you all, I really do.

The blog stayed quiet as I couldn’t bring myself to add more noise to your email inbox and social media feeds. Today, the children and I unplugged completely, and took a long, long walk by a river. They chased ducks, hunted for snakes and skipped up and down the river bank, while I attempted to find some peace under the grey skies.

It helped, a little. Later we returned home and made pizza together, covering the kitchen in flour and bits of cheese. Life goes on, despite the state of the world and mankind. Sometime I think my biggest contribution is raising three little people to love others, no matter their race, religion or whatever. It’s a daily responsibility and privilege.

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Strawberry rhubarb rice pudding

Weekend links and photos

The fact that I am only getting around to this list of weekend links at eight-o-clock on Sunday evening says a lot about how my week went: unproductive.

It started at 7am last Monday morning, when I went out to move the chicken coop with Danny, something I’ve done many times before. But this time, I pulled something in my lower back. A strain? A sprain? Whatever happened in that moment felt like my lower backbone had splintered. All symptoms (and Google) pointed toward a herniated disc.

The swelling started, the pain and numbness moved down my right leg and up to my shoulder. I could barely walk. The doctor declared it a bad sprain, ordered bedrest as much as possible, heat to relax the muscles, and prescribed anti-inflammatories and muscle relaxants.

Talk about feeling helpless. Simply rolling over in bed was difficult and going to the bathroom an ordeal. I cancelled my plans for the week and focused on keeping the family home up and running as much as possible.

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Grilled salmon | Simple Bites

Weekend links and photos

Happy Mother’s Day!

I am writing this in hopes that you are lounging in bed or lingering on a sunny patio, waiting for breakfast or at least coffee and a croissant. I’m doing the same; don’t worry, this post was scheduled in advance!

Yesterday my Mother’s Day gift arrived: a load of earth, deposited on our driveway. We spent a good part of the day moving wheelbarrow loads of soil around to the four corners of the homestead. The raspberries got a top-up, the raised beds had a layer added, I dug a new bed for sunflowers, and all of my pots & planters were filled.

My back and shoulders a little stiff and sore, but I’m thrilled that we are now ready. to. plant! Today, however, is for relaxing: breakfast in bed, reading, and a long walk as a family.

Here’s what I’ve been reading and loving around the web this week:

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