Zucchini Bites

Sunday, 23 February 2014

This is a super easy delicious recipe that my mother-in-law kindly gave to me at my bridal shower. I’ve gotten many requests for this recipe so I thought I would share it here.

Zucchini Bites

Makes 12 mini bites

  • 1 cup grated zucchini
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ onion, diced
  • ¼ cup shredded cheese
  • ¼ cup parmesan cheese
  • ¼ cup crushed rice krispies
  • salt and pepper


Spray mini muffin tin non-stick spray

Squeeze extra moisture from zucchini

Mix all ingredients together

Bake at 400 for 20 minutes or until golden brown

Fireplace - The Beginning

Saturday, 22 February 2014

When we looked at this house my first reaction to the fireplace was…that has to go. I hated it, it had a giant drywall border, the proportions were all wrong and the brass front was hideous.

But when it comes to a renovation you have to compromise. My husband said that the fireplace was something he really really wanted to keep and so I said well if we are going to keep it we need to make some changes.

First, the drywall border has to go, second, the mantel height needs to come down about six inches and third we need to frame in the wall on an angle.

I asked my mom's designer for some advice and she sent me the follow pictures:

From there I started scoping the internet for ideas about style and tile type. I came across the blog Young House Love. They had a beautiful post about their fireplace and I decided that I wanted to model our fireplace after theirs.

Then the convincing began… I had to convince my husband that this wasn't going to be too much of a project and that there wasn't going to be any surprises…convincing turned to arguing turned to my mother trying to referee. In the end we decided to cut a small hole in the upper right corner and take a peak in behind to see what we were dealing with. So we made the cut, took a look and found…a lot of air, it was completely hollow meaning we could do what I had planned and didn't have to worry about electrical, venting, gas etc.

Demolition began, we had already started taking down the decorative ledging around the living room so we just added this on. Once the demolition was complete we could start putting it all back together. My husband had to reframe around the fireplace and the wall to the ceiling, drywall and then begin the decorative mdf moulding.

I took a lot of hints from Young House Love for the decorative moulding. Our goal was to make it look similar to our cabinets (shaker style), we added a nice thick cap on top and now are patiently waiting to have it sprayed white.

Once the painting is complete we can start to tile the surround. I've chosen a faux marble subway tile, so again going with a very similar look to Young House Love.

What we ate during our renovation blitz week

Thursday, 20 February 2014

I didn’t want to eat only take-out and pizza for the duration of our renovation so I started putting some ideas together about how we were going to remain on the job site and still eat relatively healthy.

We are saving the refrigerator and moving it to the basement for a “beer” fridge but until it assumes that role I figured we could use it to store frozen meals. We could also save the microwave for the time being and use it to heat things up. There was obviously a number of days in there where we ate out but we wanted to reduce that to as small a number as possible.
What I decided to make:
C. Shrimp fried rice – Serves 4
D. Chili in the slow cooker – Serves 8
F. Tortilla soup – Serves 8
G. Italian tomato chicken in the slow cooker, Caesar salad and rice – Serves 4






















my parents










my parents


80th and Ivy
















The one recipe that I didn't find online is the one listed below. It is a great vegetarian weeknight meal that I make quite often for my husband and I.
Tofu, Feta, Oregano Rice with Spinach
  • 1 package of extra firm tofu
  • 1 large onion, cut in half and sliced thin
  • 2 different colored peppers, cut into thin strips
  • 200 grams of whole wheat penne (or rice)
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 2 Tbsp of grapeseed oil
  • 1 bunch of baby spinach
  • 250 grams of feta
  • Plenty of fresh ground pepper
  • 1 tsp of dried oregano
Slice the onion and peppers and fry them in a large skillet in the oil for 5 min on medium heat. Cook the rice according to the instructions and add the spinach 5 minutes before it is finished cooking.
Crush the garlic into the pan and continue to sauté the onions and peppers until glossy and browning. Blitz tofu in a food processor until crumbled, add to the skillet and brown Add rice and spinach to the skillet.
Crumble over the feta, add a generous amount of fresh pepper and the oregano

Kitchen In Progress

Monday, 17 February 2014

It has been a long two weeks let me tell you. Today is the first day I've spent longer than an hour (not including sleeping) in the apartment. It is so nice to get caught up on things. I'm doing copious amounts of laundry and looking forward to actually cooking a nice healthy meal.

Everything is coming along at a rapid rate. Currently my husband is at the house base and casing the last two bedrooms and master bathroom and then….we are ready for paint! My husbands parents came to help for a whole week (we also took that week off work) and it was amazing!! They were such a HUGE help, without them I don't think we would be even finished laying the hardwood.

Renovations are not for everyone! This "day off" from renovating couldn't have come sooner, I still love our house but I don't like it right now. I've spent too much time working there and I'm burnt out. But I am SO happy with the progress!!

I couldn't get my husband to move out of some of these photos, apparently actually working is more important than documenting the work so excuse his head.

I am so excited for everything that has happened. We put down floor protection as we were hardwooding the main floor so I haven't even be able to see what it looks like, it will make the reveal that much more exciting. We had leftover hardwood from the main floor so we decided to hardwood the master, I've always wanted hardwood in my master so I am so pleased.

We've only had one real hiccup, our sink is backordered. It was supposed to arrive last Monday and we haven't heard anything. We can't have our quartz countertop measured until we get the sink because they need it to ensure a perfect fit. And it takes about two weeks to get the countertop after its been measured so hopefully it comes soon.

Some of the major things we've accomplished so far are:

- Water line run from the sink to the fridge
- All cabinets installed (minus the appliance garage because we need to countertop install before we can do that) as well as cover panels etc.
- Flooring laid on the main floor and master bedroom
- 50% of the mud and taping complete
- Valences and crown moulding installed in the kitchen
- Cookbook shelf complete (and a little surprise for me was a nice wine bottle holder above the shelf)
- Fireplace framed, drywalled and decorative moulding in place and ready for paint
- Light fixtures moved to their new location
- Extra electrical run to the island (for the microwave and an additional outlet)
- By the time I post this 100% of the base and case installed :)

This next week will be about finishing up base and case, filling nail holes/sanding and then cleaning. We need it to be spotless for the painters and then next next week the painters will come in a spray all our base and case, valences, crown moulding and cookbook shelf. After that they'll roll the walls and we will be rid of the purple palace forever.

The Purple Palace

Wednesday, 5 February 2014

We took possession Monday! I must say I am over the moon excited about our first home!!! I love it so much.

I have previously indicated that we are doing a massive renovation of the entire main floor including a new kitchen.
No renovation starts without a good set of before pictures. You want to remember truly how bad (or purple in our case) the house was. You want to remember all the little details that made you cringe (like the etched dove windows). There are so many things you want to remember so take lots of photos! Here are our before pictures.

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