November 2015 100K Walkies Challenge

Last November Maxx and I walked 114 km and we plan to do it again this year. I created the 100k Walkies Challenge to motivate myself to get outdoors during the dreary month of November. I use my MapMyDogWalk app on my phone to record our time and distance. Yesterday, through cold rain and wind, we did our first 3.65 km. Today, the weather is much more inviting.

If you need some motivation to get walking, Maxx and I will be glad to be your cheering section. I’ll be posting photos from our walks on Instagram and here. Please join us!

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We Have a Small Adventure

About ten days ago, we were sitting on the beach at Sandbanks Provincial Park and playing in the water with the dog. Today, the dog and I will be warmly dressed as we head out for our walk. Ontario weather is never boring. In addition to the beautiful parks in the more easterly part of our province, there are many interesting places to explore. We viewed the Marmoraton Mine, a large hole in the ground that was for a short time, a profitable mine extracting iron ore, but is now what could be called a scar on the landscape, slowly filling in with water. It is strangely beautiful in a sad way.

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We also travelled the short distance to Eldorado. This was briefly the site of Ontario’s first goldmine. The location is commemorated on a plaque, quite hidden in the trees by the roadside. A few buildings are still standing including one that claimed to be the site of Ontario’s first gas station. Another, where I’m standing in this photo was a store.  I felt a little insecure standing on that porch. Some of it didn’t seem very stable. If you’re inclined to drive solely to Eldorado to see the sights, I wouldn’t recommend it.

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Well, Here I Am

After struggling now for the third time to get EDALB Blog up and running on my Netfirms account I’ve given up. I spent most of yesterday trying to install WordPress so that it didn’t trigger their security, but apparently it can’t be done. It seems  to be difficult to maintain a WordPress blog on that host, and I really don’t want to take the time to reinstall and rebuild every six months. So, until I decide exactly how to proceed on on that front, here I am WordPress.com. Since this blog exists largely for my own entertainment, that may be where it stays. My work on About.com Horses and Ponybox of course take precedence. Besides, who wants to be online when you could be hanging about in trees?

Apple Picking
I bet Eve too felt that all the best apples were just out of reach.

As Busy As I Want to Be

I’ve been as busy as I want to be lately. I’ve been redecorating my house. The kitchen is almost done. Walls have been painted, new flooring installed. A new sink and tap has been purchased, and new ceiling fixtures have been installed as well as some cool under counter lighting. A new chandelier is waiting to be put up in the dining room. We need to pick out new counters, but are feeling tentative about it! Too many choices!

I’ve been crafting like crazy too. My Cricut Explore has given me so many options! I’m learning to make greeting cards, and today, I plan to cut an intricate leather design for the pockets of a pair of jeans I’m making. I’m sewing too. My favorite recent creation is what I call my tight pants. Every time I wear them, it reminds me of the Jimmy Fallon/Will Farrell tight pants skit and I feel like singing the song. The pants however, are anything but tight, so my family is a confused about why I call them my tight pants.

And because I don’t have enough to do, I bought an old knitting machine. I’m just learning how to use it and so far, have almost completed a scarf for my husband. Everybody might be getting scarves for Christmas next year, because it’s just so much fun to zing back and forth, and I haven’t learned how to do decreases and increases, or fancy patterns yet.

The next plan is redecorating a spare room into a crafting/sewing studio. I’ve got the paint and am waiting for some help to move some furniture. Then, the bathroom is going to get redecorated.

Right now, I better get out of my PJs and get going. Think I’ll wear my tight pants.

Tight Pants – Will Farrell and Jimmy Fallon

Experiments with Tiger Nut Flour and a Quick Recipe

I discovered Tiger Nut flour at the bulk food store. I  was after almond meal, which I use the odd time when I bake. It was substantially less expensive than the almond meal, so of course, I bought it. Shortly after getting  it home, I did some research and learned it isn’t actually a nut at all, but a tuber that grows on the roots of a certain type of sedge (grass). Many sources suggest that it may have been one of the earliest human food sources, and that it is a nutrient powerhouse. It is well-known in many countries and is also used to make a milky drink.

If you’d like to know more about the cultivation of tiger nuts check out http://www.tigernuts.com/tigernut_tigernuts_chufa_chufas.html

I’ve done a little experimenting and have found it can replace coconut flour or almond meal one for one. It is much sweeter than either of these, and if you like to make muffin or cake-like treats, you may find you won’t need much, if any extra sweetener.

Tiger nut flour, or at least the brand I bought at Bulk Barn, has a less mealy texture than either coconut or almond meal, but it does have a slightly gritty texture. It’s almost as if there is a bit of sand in it, but it doesn’t have the same effect on your teeth. My guess is that it is either very fine sand particles (it does grow slightly underground, so this would be understandable) or it is the plant fiber that makes it seem so. It was off-putting at first, but I’ve gotten used to it now that I know I’m not floating my teeth each time I eat it.

Summertime means BBQ time, and burgers are a quick and easy meal. While you don’t, strictly speaking, need a bun, it makes you feel more like one of the crowd if you don’t eat your burger with a knife a fork. Here’s how to make a super quick hamburger bun. If you are microwave-leery, bake it in your toaster oven.

Quick Tiger Nut Hamburger Bun

  • 1 tbs of coconut flour
  • 1 tbs of tiger nut flour
    OR
  • 2 tbs of tiger nut flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbs of water
  • 1 tbs melted butter or coconut oil
  • 1/4 tsp of baking powder
  • sprinkle of salt

Mix everything but the baking powder in a large mug. Let sit for about five minutes so the flours can absorb the moisture. Then, mash in the baking soda. Spread the mixture out so it’s even in the bottom of the cup, and microwave for about  a minute and a half.

Dump the ‘bun’ out of the cup and with a very sharp, knife cut it horizontally to make two halves. Pile on burger patty and toppings. This will be a bit more crumbly than a wheat flour bun, but really much hardier than many of the wheat-less or gluten-free  buns I’ve tried.  You’ll be able to pick up your burger like the rest of the kids.

Sorry I don’t have a photo to share. I keep getting half way through my burger before remembering I should take a picture.