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The Empanada Company is another lil hidden gem that I happened to stumble upon.   Having not had an authentic empanada in a long while, I suddenly needed to eat one.  In I went to check it out. Its a small take out window with a super tiny seating area – 3 barstools with a little counter against the windows across from the ordering window. (Because it’s winter, the patio was bare but I’m sure that offers more seating during the warmer months)

Inside by the ordering counter.
All the different filling options listed on the wall.

Being the little piglet that I am, I couldn’t wait to bite into the deliciousness that awaited me in the empanadas.   Therefore there was no picture taken. My apologies.  BTW: I tried two types: grilled veggies w/feta & a coconut curry chicken. Both were super tasty!

20121220-231038.jpgAvocado fries w/spinach dipping sauce

I couldn’t resist when I saw these listed on the menu. Slices of avocado, breaded and deep fried or baked. Words can not describe how good these were.  If you’re an avid avocado fan like me, you could eat these til you explode. As tasty as the dipping sauce was, the fries didn’t need them.

Overall, I can’t wait to go back to try all of the other fillings offered. They’re reasonably priced, mighty tasty and definitely worth a try if you’re in the area.


FoodWasteFriday Oops late post again! Its official, I’m on ‘holiday’ timings.  Everything is as it happens it seems.

Glad to report no waste again…we purposely bought what was needed for new recipes in which I wanted to try as well as our regular grocery shop plus a bit more to help get us through the Christmas week.  Lord knows I don’t do well in crowds let alone those who are hating the fact that they need to go grocery shopping after Christmas instead of shopping the deals & bargains that belong to Boxing Day.  On top of that, we finally had our first real snow fall this week and its snowing again today.  People will be desperate out there after being cooped up.  Yikes!! No thanks.

Even with our meals out taken into consideration, we still had plenty of food leftover.  We finally polished them off last night. In fact our dinner plate looked like a leftover tasting platter *lol* A tiny portion of each: rotisserie chicken, spaghetti w/meatsauce & 1 meatball,  grilled veggies & mashed taters all served with a small bowl of homemade crockpot split pea soup. Leftover cookies for dessert. Yum!

We can now start the cycle all over again and make new meals with new leftovers.  I’ll probably have to make a run tomorrow for produce, unless I decide to get creative with our frozen garden bounty…..hmmm 😉

How’d you do?

On Friday’s, I share what food items that I have ‘wasted’ by letting spoil during the week from forgetfulness and/or neglect. Kristen over at The Frugal Girl has inspired me to publicly post in hopes of reducing waste. (Food Waste Friday is now being co-hosted every other week with Simply Being Mum – pop on over to take a peek!)

One of the joy’s of going on vacation is not having to think about what’s for dinner, going through the motions of cooking it and cleaning up after, right? The bonus of eating out – trying things you’d never consider cooking in your own home or trying different combinations of flavours.  The in-laws suggested BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse for dinner.

I’m not much of a drinker but for some reason this item’s description caught my eye.  It was MUCH sweeter then I anticipated and quite shocked that they used frozen peach slices instead of fresh.  My family laughed at me as I continually watered down my drink.  (I’m not a fan of syrupy sweet cocktails. )  The waiter felt bad for me and offered me the choice of another drink but I chose to keep watering the cocktail down and sip on water as well.


White Peach Margarita

1800 Silver Tequila, Cointreau Orange Liqueur, Monin White Peach and BJ’s Freshly Prepared Sweet & Sour.

While I quietly suffered through my poor choice in an adult bevvy (totally owning it for my poor choice and decision not to correct it), my family enjoyed wine and pints of the restaurant’s in house microbrew’s with their meals.


Fresh Atlantic Salmon

Flavorful fresh salmon fillet either flame-broiled or blackened. Served with lemon Chardonnay butter sauce, rice pilaf and seasoned, steamed vegetables.


Miso Salmon

Sautéed with a miso citrus glaze and served with white rice, snow peas, carrots, red bell peppers and onions.


Mediterranean Pizza

Fresh and delicious! Grilled chicken, basil pesto, roasted garlic, Kalamata olives, sun-dried tomatoes, feta cheese and sliced peperoncinis.


Brewhouse Double Deluxe Burger

Two Angus burger patties, crispy Applewood smoked bacon, fried onion strings, cheddar and Swiss cheese, tomato, lettuce and pickles.

20121220-231653.jpgBJ’s Bacon Cheeseburger

Applewood smoked bacon, cheddar cheese, tomato, lettuce, pickles and our special burger sauce.

I was pleasantly impressed with how flavourful the food was and didn’t suffer the after effects of eating out –  the whole feeling dehyrdated where you want to drink water for the rest of the night.   In fact, we enjoyed the restaurant so much that dad wanted to go back the following night and try something else from their menu, which we did LOL.

Totally would recommend this place to others if they have this restaurant nearby. Priced fairly with better then average food.    This place is already on the ‘must visit again’ list.

Have you eaten at BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse?

After years of seeing commercials for this US fast food chain and hearing from others about how great their burgers were, I finally gave in to see if there was one en route or near to where we were headed on vacation.  I finally talked my family into stopping at one for lunch just so I could check them out.

I was told to try their strawberry lemonade as it was THE BESTEST EVER.  Now don’t get me wrong, I’m a connoisseur of lemonade but their strawberry lemonade being ‘the bestest’?  After I ordered it, I saw that you could get a light version of it (sugar free). Do you know how sad I was about that?


Strawberry Lemonade
(full sugared lemonade with strawberry jam…and syrup?)

After perusing the menu for what seemed like eons, I decided on a regular bacon cheeseburger with onion rings instead of the bottomless fries.   The presentation was ‘pretty’ but its just a burger with 5 onion rings or 5 beefsteak fries.

Bacon Cheeseburger w/onion rings

Overall, I wasn’t impressed. It was average. Edible. It was only a bacon cheeseburger with onion rings.  I did try a few of the hubster’s fries and he did order another round since they were bottomless. When it arrived, it was another wax paper lined plastic basket with 5 beefsteak fries arrived. Seriously?

Have the hubster and I become burger snobs?  He confessed that it wasn’t as good as he recalled was when he was younger, having frequented the chain.  The decor is still the same but the food has definitely gone downhill. Their slogan is catchy but now I’ll know better.   In a roundabout way, I felt like we ate at a sit down version of McDonald’s but with sub par food. Is that even possible?  Would I eat there again? Probably but it won’t be my first choice.

Red Robin!! Yum!!! – NOT!

Have you been to Red Robin? Did you enjoy it?

After meeting up with my girlfriend for an impromptu dinner last night, we got caught up on events we’ve both  missed in each other’s lives within the past four months.  It was really nice.

During dinner, the conversation turned to books.  I’ll admit, I have been in a bit of a reading funk. I find that I’m totally into reading and can’t put a book down OR I’m totally over reading and refuse to pick up a book.  Right now…I’m kinda over reading but slowly leaning towards picking it up again.

My girlfriend totally recommended ‘Fifty Shades Of Grey’ and in fact kept raving about it!  I’ve heard all the whoop-la about this book series of books but was wondering…was it really worth the purchase?

So readers…have you read Fifty Shades Of Grey and would you recommend it?


Well if today is the day that world is truly coming to an end as predicted, I can go knowing full well we haven’t wasted this week either.  *huge thumbs up*

There has been an over abundance of produce in our fridge between dad & I shopping as well as being gifted produce of a friend’s fridge as they were headed off on a month long vacation overseas.  Luckily, I was able to incorporate a lot of veggies & fruits into our meals this week thus bringing down the overall visual overstuffed look of our fridge which was causing dad panic attacks – despite his claims of  denial *lol*  Having friends over for dinner didn’t hurt either 😉

How’d you do?

On Friday’s, I share what food items that I have ‘wasted’ by letting spoil during the week from forgetfulness and/or neglect. Kristen over at The Frugal Girl has inspired me to publicly post in hopes of reducing waste. (Food Waste Friday is now being co-hosted every other week with Simply Being Mum – pop on over to take a peek!)

Glad to report that the hubster and I are still battling something but not nearly as severe as we were last week.  He’s been going to work and I’ve been in and out of the house all week running all of us to our own doctor appointments and running tons of errands.

Still glad to report – no food wasted! *thumbs up*  Dad and I have been on a shopping rampage but we’ve been managing to eat up/use up everything purchased that was perishable.

How’d you do?

On Friday’s, I share what food items that I have ‘wasted’ by letting spoil during the week from forgetfulness and/or neglect. Kristen over at The Frugal Girl has inspired me to publicly post in hopes of reducing waste. (Food Waste Friday is now being co-hosted every other week with Simply Being Mum – pop on over to take a peek!)

I have a confession. I love having my nails done.


(Photo credit: madame.furie)

Pedicures I absolutely adore and have a hard time turning down an invitation to join a girlfriend for one.  Manicures are a whole other story.  I love seeing my fingers done up but unfortunately I have oily nails (from what I keep getting told) and the polish doesn’t last past 3 days – if even.  I’m also very hard on my hands & nails, always washing dishes (despite using a dishwasher) and have a bad habit of cleaning without wearing gloves. I know, horrible me.  Considering the price of a manicure and how long it lasts, its not really worth it and definitely not in the budget for constant maintenance.  Could you imagine, a manicure every 3-4 days?! Yikes!!  My bank account hurts at the thought of that *lol*

My mother in law and I were having a conversation about getting nails done then she started raving about the salon she frequents.  We agreed that upon our next visit (the hubster & I) that we’d go for QT girly time and I’d get to check out the salon.   While away on vacation, we did visit the salon. I decided upon a shellac mani.  It was nice to see the differences between salons down in the US vs Canada. Its always the lil things that stand out the most to me – how they treat you while you’re getting your nails done, the technique and order in which they do things, different products etc.  Needless to say,  I drove the person batty by asking 1,001 questions about his techniques & products.  I had a blast!

But now I am stuck in a situation…I need to get the shellac mani removed.  Should I pay the extra $5 for a regular mani after my removal OR should I return home and give myself one? (I have all the supplies)

Do you love manicures too? Do you get them done at the salon or are you frugal and do them yourself at home?


Sorry this post is late – still riding the ‘sick wagon’ with the hubster.

No waste this week, we’ve been diligent on using up what we have and buying less – still on vacation mode perhaps?   How’d you do?

On Friday’s, I share what food items that I have ‘wasted’ by letting spoil during the week from forgetfulness and/or neglect. Kristen over at The Frugal Girl has inspired me to publicly post in hopes of reducing waste. (Food Waste Friday is now being co-hosted every other week with Simply Being Mum – pop on over to take a peek!)

We’ve been back from vacation for a few days now and the hubster managed to catch the dreaded nasty traveler’s cold. I guess the climate change from hot to cold really shocked his system more then the cold to hot paired with the recirculated airplane air = finally got him.   And being married to such a wonderful man…he’s so generous in sharing his cold with me. UGH!!  The good news, my system is handling it MUCH better then his which is very unfortunate for him.

We have the usual fare going on – rest, plenty of fluids, soups, tissues and a wide variety of cold meds along with vitamins/supplements. Our living room could almost rival a pharmacy.

The day we landed it was late afternoon and pretty  much 2*C with flurries that kept coming and going with a bitterly cold wintery breeze.  At least that’s how it felt coming from a hot climate 😉   Fast forward a few days, its currently 16*C at 10.45am.

Needless to say, I know better and am sure the temp will drop by evening if not earlier in the afternoon. For now, all the window’s are wide open letting the germ filled air out. Bedsheets are being washed, garbage’s have been emptied and spritzed with Lysol as well as many other commonly touched surfaces.

Hopefully this brief ‘wind of change’ will be enough to help us kick this cold bug we have hiding out here once and for all.

Got any tried and true remedies for a cold?

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