The Thirty Dollar Pie

As we drove to West Glacier National Park we happened to pass a small place called The Huckleberry Pie Patch which held the promise of really great pie!  After a day visiting MacDonald Lake, taking a stroll up the Avalanche trail, and admiring the water run off from the mountains.  My appetite was very large from all of the fresh mountain air and as we left the park I exclaimed “We just have to stop at that pie place! I never had huckleberry pie!”


My husband “Sure! It will be great for dessert!”

We  stopped in at the Patch to pick up the pie and never thought to question the price.

The clerk looked at us “Thirty dollars. Please.”

My husband of Scotsmen ancestry looked a little pale as he forked over the cash knowing he could not walk away from a good pie or face the wrath of his ravenous wife.

As we stepped out the door he looked at me with his empty wallet he grumbled ” This better be good pie.”

I smiled with beaming optimism! I knew I had found a gem “It feels pretty heavy and it smells good.”

We made it back to the camper and started cooking dinner for the evening.

The pie sat there looking at us waiting to be eaten.

I  poured a glass of wine and thought “What the heck?”

And cut a very large slice of Huckleberry pie before supper. It was good. Really good.

SO good that I had to have another slice after supper. The next morning for breakfast and an afternoon snack the following day.

It was after several days of huckleberry pie I came to the decision that you cannot really put a price on good pie! Thirty dollars be damned it was worth every penny!

What is the most you ever spent on a pastry? Was it worth it?

My Mom’s Baked Beans

As the snow gently falls outside it makes me crave those special foods that my Mom made when I was a kid. It was always after  an afternoon of snow fort building, sledding, and a little cross-country skiing that I would run into the house starved for supper. I knew the moment I opened the door and caught the smell of baked beans in the oven that I couldn’t wait one more minute to dine with my family.

It is this simple recipe that I now make for my kids! We enjoy it when the air is cold, the snow has fallen, and take comfort in its warmth. It is  the warmth my Mother once filled me with after time spent playing in a winter wonderland.

What is your favorite family recipe on a cold winter’s day?

The Happy Food Medium

I love food! Any kind of food! But the most tempting of all is junk food!



Now I’m trying be a new and improved healthier me! I have been visiting a lot of health bloggers to discover their tips and tricks for staying on the right track.



The key for me is to find balance with my diet and recognize that when I am having a bad day I should opt for the celery sticks instead of the ketchup chips.  I know I need to find my happy food medium!



Do you have a positive relationship with food? How do you stay on the healthy track?

The Haunted Hamburger

Jerome, Arizona, The “Mile High City” is the legendary place of haunted happenings and was once a thriving mining community.  It is now a historical site and residence boasting of population of fifty.  But I suspect they forgot to count all of the resident  ghosts in the area.

As we  drove through this small little town I wanted to  stop and visit the this abandoned hotel.  The adventurer in me knew I could find at least one ghost with a good tale to tell. But my husband and children were on to me and  exclaimed in unison, “NO!!!!”

But luckily for me! Melissa at This ‘N That advised m me to  check-out  the Haunted Hamburger! I knew with a restaurant like that I was be bound to meet at least one ghost or two!

The history of the Haunted  Hamburger begins with a thieving ghost who has a love for hammers and steals them in the middle of the night.  If a hammer is missing then the you can count on it being the jack of all trades thieving in the night.

Unfortunately, we didn’t see any thieving ghosts! But our hamburgers on our plates vanished within seconds! All of that ghost hunting had made us famished and there is no better place to dine than the Haunted  Hamburger.

Do have a favorite dining establishment? Is it haunted?

It’s Spewing Leeks!

[Paprika Furstenburg of Good Humored dashes up her blog with a good dose of  wit! She has made me chuckle going where no woman has gone before in the bathroom. Also  a known fact all walks of life find her very attractive especially  mosquitoes and a wide variety of bugs. She asks "What is the most disastrous meal you have ever cooked?"]

A sleep deprived mother with a husband travelling on the road is a lot to muster with a two-year old and infant in the cold winter months. It was one evening I was excited to have him return home to our little love nest. As the two-year old napped and the littlest happily rocked in the swing. I attempted my husbands favorite Cream of Leek Soup with Parmesan Potato Dumplings.It was one my culinary masterpieces that I loved to create on a cold day. 

It was in the afternoon as my two-year old  napped I sleepily chopped the vegetables and boiled them to perfection. It just at the right moment as I was about to puree my creation my little darling awoke from his nap. I got him settled with his toys.  I  then went back into my zombie state thinking I should have had the nap instead of making the dreaded soup.

But what is a girl to do? It was time to puree the leeks! I went to place them in the blender, placing the top just so, pressing the button on high, and that is when all hell broke loose! The devil had possessed my blender!

The top exploded off the blender with gusto!  Chunks of leek  hit the ceiling, the stove, the curtains, covering me, and the children. The blender had taken on a force within itself and was shredding its wrath across my sparkling kitchen.

I felt utterly defeated against this possessed demon and did what any reasonable women would do…I pulled the plug, sat on the floor,  and wailed my little heart out. It was the tearful wail that takes over your whole soul and alerts  the dead to run from your tracks.  I was blinded with tears! I attempted to contain the  snot from running on the floor by wiping my nose with a shirt sleeve covered in leek guts.  The fight against the demon blender and willful leeks had taken the last of my energy!

It was at that moment my husband arrived home early from work to discover the leek massacres  of 2003.  It was to his horror to see one woman covered in gunk tears running down her face sobbing on the kitchen floor, one child running amok dragging the chunks with him as he went, and one little baby patiently waiting for someone to clean – up the mess.

The only thing  of comfort my husband could  say was “Honey, lets open some wine and order a pizza!”

What is one of your worst cooking disasters? Did you ever attempt to make it again?

The One with the Peanut on Top

[Tilly Bud The Laughing Housewife serves up a silver lining with her daily humor. Can you believe she schedules her posts three times a day?  I wish I had that dedication! She asks "If you were only allowed to write about one thing i.e. your blog had to have just one topic, what would it be?"]

I have an addiction to Peanut Butter I love it in the morning, love in the evening, and even in the afternoon. It compliments my beverage of choice whether it  be milk, coffee, tea, wine, or beer. It offers me comfort on a dark day. And happiness on a good one. It is the one thing in my cupboard that I can depend on when there is nothing to eat. Peanut butter in a word is my true love.

My addiction came about the time I was seven! It was around the same time the ad for Squirrel Peanut Butter invaded the TV waves with the slogan the one with the peanut on top.

Everytime my mother would bring home a new container of peanut butter I had to be the first to have the peanut on top!

Sometimes my oldest sister would torment me with the fact that she had to have the peanut  “It wasn’t fair that I got it all the time.”Looking back she was fourteen and I was seven – I think she could have forgone the peanut.

My mother to keep the peace and tired of teenage hormones would scold me to ask first before taking it with the unpleasant reminder that it was very rude not to share the peanut. I would then be sent to my room to think about my perilous mistake!

Of course, how could one peanut cause such a ruckus? I’ll never know…But I do know I take comfort in a peanut butter sandwich or cookie any day over a peanut!

If there was one food you had to blog about what would it be?

Christmas in November: It’s Not Just for December

This past weekend I escaped to a refreshing getaway at the The Fairmont Jasper Lodge celebrating Christmas in November. Yes for all you cynics - I did just say Christmas in November! And I have to confess it was a great weekend! 

I was convinced by one of  my closest friends to attend this event. At first, I was skeptical about all of this Christmas business! I think I may even said something along the lines as to “isn’t this something old women do?” And almost gawfed at her when she wanted to take the tour bus up to the lodge. Once again, I rolled my “Isn’t that something old people do?”

She laughed at me,  “Yes there are lots of Q-Tips that attend and some  young gals as well.  Try it! It will be fun!”

I took her advice and booked the trip with skeptical fear. 

  Maggie, her mom, aunt, and I hopped on the Christmas in November bus and headed to Jasper for a weekend of Christmas fun! And Oh! The fun we had! I think we might of laughed, drank, and ate the whole trip. We didn’t have a care in the world. Except for making it to the seminars on time!

As soon as we arrived we were greeted with cookies and hot chocolate as the bell boys whisked our luggage off to our cabins. We enjoyed a beautiful view of the Rockies amongst Lac Beauvert and admired the elk sauntering through the resorts grounds. We enjoyed the warmth of a rustic cabin, several bottles of complimentary Cedar Creek wine, and sorted through our gift box of Rocky Mountain soaps. I knew at that very moment  - it would be a wonderful weekend!

The first evening was a lovely welcome reception were we enjoyed an abundance of wine, martini’s, and food. If you can imagine it, it was there… My mouth is still watering from the lamb chops and my waistline has expanded by two inches. We mingled, ate, laughed, drank, and finally staggered  back to our room. We knew  we would need some rest before the mornings seminars.

The first on our agenda was Bikini Boot Camp with Lindsay Nealon and Dawn Kosloski. It was the perfect way to spend the early morning learning how to work our core with simple standing exercises. Needless, to say they are my new favorite fitness Guru’s and I now know how to do standing ab work while I do the dishes or type on the computer. They were energetic, friendly, and encouraging about making fitness a priority in your life.

Soon after,  we headed to the next seminar with interior designer Karl Lohnes, on “Decorating the Christmas Tree.” I know the moment you read the title of the seminar you might begin to snore. But I have to tell you he was funny, engaging, and full of great ideas. He demonstrated three different themes for Christmas and everything came from Canadian Tire where you “spend like Santa and save like Scrooge.” He also gave great tips on painting 101 and wall hanging 102. I  now wish he would come to my home and redesign every inch of it. If only I could find a genie in a bottle to make this wish come true!

Sadly, we had to break for lunch! Oh! And a feast it was! We filled our bellies and I was ready for a nap! But of course, this craft  challenge  had crafting! I wondered what hour of hell did Maggie sign us up for? Was this a cruel joke?

In the end, our crafting hostess with the mostess was  Chris Stranding and  I was pleasantly surprised to find I was enjoying the process of making my own garland.  The materials she selected where simplistic and elegant. I followed her step by step instruction and with ease my garland actually turned out! Lookout Martha Stewart because Chris Stranding might be in running for your show! Mrs. Stranding might actually show you how to make a craft and have it turn-out! You can believe it if she ever said the words “Very fine” or “Very easy!”

We ended our day with a bang! We took mixology 101 with Micah Dew. The moment we walked in I knew we were in trouble we were each handed a glass of Candy Cane Martini which went down too fast. It was delish! and we got to sample a variety of drinks from a berry mojito to a horny wallbanger. Needless to say,by the end of the day, I was in full Christmas spirit and good cheer!

 The night flew by fast with  cocktails, a festive supper, dancing, and more cocktails. The end of the night was a blur, lots of laughing, and an interesting conversation with one of the bell boys (I will save for  a later date).  The next morning we awoke with a strong headache, we summoned the hangover gods, loaded up on Tylenol, and moved slowly to our last session of the weekend with Chef Michael Smith.

He was funny, entertaining, and made cooking look like fun. I ended up enjoying cup of mulled apple cider. learned I could put curry in my sugar cookies and it will taste great! Plus have a new favorite recipe “Roast Chicken with apple, Onion, Rosemary Pan Stew.” The only problem now is I have to try to make it!

The weekend ended with a massive brunch, we hopped on the bus, and headed home. Was this a weekend just for Q-Tips? Hell no! It was a fun engaging weekend and the best pat of the bus ride – I got to sleep my hangover off the whole way home! Will I do it again next year? Hell Yes! Sign-me up and I’ll be there with bells on!


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