Sunday, May 17, 2015

Who Loves Minions?

Last year, we embarked on our Guthrie Family Adventure to Universal Studios in Florida. One of the biggest attractions the kids wanted to see was Minion Mayhem. They laughed at the banana farts and their stomachs lurched as the ride raced us around Gur's secret lair. It was the highlight of their trip. This perfect Minion sized coffee mug was my souvenir of the trip.

You can now find new Minion toys inside specially marked Kinder Surprise  Classic Eggs. There are 11 to collect. Isn't it cool how the egg shape resembles a Minion? Our next arts and crafts time we are building Minions watch for our creations on my Twitter and Facebook pages! 

Who wants to win a Minion-themed prize pack worth $40.00, in preparation for the new Minions movie which is a prequel to the Despicable Me movie?


The winner will be emailed on Monday March 25th, 2015. Good Luck! 

PSSST! I have a secret to share with my readers. On Friday, May 22 join us for an extra-fun Kinder Canada Facebook page giveaway. For fans who’ve collected all 11 Minions toys, there’s a chance to win four tickets to see the Minions movie in theatres when it comes out this July. 

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Saturday, May 16, 2015

Special Olympics Fundraiser Today in Kemptville!

Today at Staples in Kemptville, Ontario there will be a BBQ from 11:00 am until 2:00 pm benefiting the Special Olympics Ontario. The Kemptville Staples is located at 302 Colonnade Road beside Scotiabank. Special guest athlete Olympian Erin Arbuckle will kick off the BBQ with all proceeds going to support the Special Olympics Ontario. 

 "Special Olympics Ontario is a non-profit, charitable organization dedicated to providing year-round sports training and competition opportunities for individuals with an intellectual disability. As part of the international Special Olympics movement, the Ottawa District Community of Special Olympics Ontario is committed to providing much needed physical education programs to more than 600 local athletes. Our programs are operated by over 250 dedicated volunteers."

This year there are three athletes from Saint Michael's High School competing in the Special Olympics. Jillian Simpson, Ben Sutherland and and Matthew Cadney will be competing in various Track & Field events including shot put, standing long jump, 50 m, 100 m and 200 m. 

Come out today and support your local athletes! You can follow our Kemptville location on Twitter. We will see you there! 

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

TomTom is Helping Me #GetHomeFaster & You Can Win!

Each school day, I commute 108 km to school. Three of those school days, I drive another 108 km to take my daughter to her swim team practices. Add on weekend errands, practice and events and I literary drive 1000 km each week. 

I can make two obvious observations about drivers in Ottawa. Most people drive responsibly, within the speed limit and with care.  The other observation is that as soon as the snow is gone the construction starts. Construction means that my regular routes are congested and it takes me twice as long to get to my destination. 

TomTom is helping me get to where I need to go faster and more efficiently with the TomTom GO 500 GPS. The are helping me gain back the precious minutes in the day and be able to spend as much time with my little ones as possible. We all how valuable time is, and it can't be bought back. 

TomTom uses real-time traffic data to let me know where there may be excessive traffic, or a road block, and suggests an alternate route to expedite the trip. My TomTom 500 GPS came in very handy last week when the Ottawa Senators were in the NHL playoffs versus Montreal. My regular traffic route was at a stand still and my alternate route was also a parking lot. It was my first time using the unit and I was pleasantly surprised at how Ottawa-centric and timely the traffic information provided helped me get home faster. 

If you are a traveller you can also check out the  TomTom Traffic Index portal where you can find information about Traffic Index in your city or the city you are traveling to and how it ranked in this year’s Index.

TomTom provided me with a TomTom 500 GPS to review. I have a TomTom 500 GPS to give away to one of my readers worth 249.99. I also have an accompanying  picture book to give away called Alfie's Story. Alfie's story is a cartoon book written by award-winning children's author Miriam Moss exclusively for TomTom. The book tells the story of Alfie who just wants to get home in time to read his new book, but encounters all sorts of obstacles along the way. 

Good Luck to everyone and I hope TomTom is able to help you #GetHomeFaster. The winner will be contacted on June 6th, 2015. The TomTom 500 GPS and Alfie's Story will be mailed to the winner's home. 

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My First Kiss

I was a baby when he died, not in age but experience. I was still waiting for the blush of my first real kiss. 

He wasn't interested in my beautiful older sister, nor my stunning friends. He was the first to see something past my tom-boy, sporty facade. It was easier to be tough and one of the boys instead of chasing them. He saw past that and held my hand. 

I was the first girl he kissed on my basement couch, with my parents upstairs on a Sunday afternoon. It will be almost  30 years since his passing and I can still hear myself scream when my father told me the news that Sandy was killed in a car accident. I was suffocating in my own body, I couldn't breath. I just cried. 

I look back now and see how broken my spirit was. My family was supportive, loving and listened. My teenage friends did not understand, nor did I. 

That event estranged me from myself and my cohort. I was lost. I slept in his hockey jersey for months. 

As soon as I finished high school, complete with a smattering of unfulfilled relationships occupying my time, I left for university. 

I applied and was accepted to three universities. I chose the one the farthest away to forget and start fresh. When I return home I realize it's the brave ones who stay and face the demons of the past. I ran and on days like today I am still running from those memories. 

Always in my heart, never forgotten...Sandy 

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Mother's Day Brunch with Tenderflake

It's is the Saturday before Mother's Day and we have friends popping over for brunch. In my world brunch means a collection of yummy snack-able sized morsels, hot beverages and long drawn out conversations. 

I am consistently short on time and big on ideas. My grand plans are usually pared down as time trickles down. This morning I decided that quiche, salad and apple crumble tarts were what I could successful tackle. Thankfully, I can depend on Tenderflake tart and pie shells to help me out in kitchen. In an hour I was able to whip up my menu with kid prep help and my DH as chief dishwasher. 

Sherrie-Mae's Quick Quiche

1 large Tenderflake pie shell
6 large eggs
8 cherry tomatoes (halved)  
1/4 cup chopped green onions
1/2 cup heavy cream 
1/2 cup homo milk
3/4 cup shredded marble cheese 

Let the pie crust sit at room temperature for 15 mins, pricked the base of the crust with fork five times, then popped the crust in the oven at 400 degrees for 15 minutes. 

In a bowl, mix together: eggs, cherry tomatoes, green onions, heavy cream and homo milk. Pour mixture into pre-cooked pie shell. 

Spread shredded cheese over quiche and cook for 20 minutes at 400 degrees. 

Finished Quiche 

Marvellous Mini Apple Tarts 

12 Tenderflake tart shells
4 medium Macintosh apples (peeled, & diced) 
1/2 cup  salted butter 
1/4 cup light brown sugar 
1/4 cup white sugar 
1/2 tsp cinnamon 
1/2 tsp nutmeg 
1/4 tsp ginger 
1 tbsp vanilla 

Let the tart shells sit at room temperature for 15 mins, pricked the base each of the tart shells with fork, then popped the crust in the oven at 400 degrees for 15 minutes. 

In a microwaves safe bowl, mix together: apples, butter, brown sugar, white sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and vanilla. Microwave the mixture on high for two minutes, stir again, and microwave for another two minutes. 

Pre Microwaved Mixture 

Spoon the apple mixture, including butter liquid into each pre-cooked tart shell evenly. Ensure the tarts are filled to the top of the tart shell. 

Filled Uncooked Tarts 

Using the apple mixture bowl, add 1/2 cup of quick oats and 1/4 cup of salted butter. Mix the ingredients together and spoon evenly into each tart. Each tart will be slightly overfilled. 

Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. 
Crumbly Cooked Apple Tarts 

I want to give you the opportunity to use the same fabulous Tenederflake products that I have this weekend. I am giving on lucky reader the chance to win 5 free Tenderflake  product coupons. I will contact the winner Monday, May 18th 2015. The coupons will be mailed to the winners mailing address. 

To enter: Tell me what your favourite dish, savoury or sweet, is to make with Tenderflake products? 

Good Luck! 

 *I was compensated for this post, however the recipe and opinions are my own.

Friday, May 8, 2015

Changing the Future of my Family

I've made a decision, that essentially changes the future of my family. I've decided to take down my crib. Several of my friends had completed this task as soon as their baby was in a toddler bed. But I held out hope that we would have another baby. By keeping my crib up it was a sign that there was still time or hope that another baby would soon join our family. 

I am a very happy mother of three energetic children and four four-legged furry children, however I thought I would have more children to call my own. That is not in our plan. 

We assembled the crib 12 years ago, Mother's Day weekend, in our first house in the Glebe. DH did not know the sex of the baby instead we called it Chicken and the baby after was Chicken 2 and finally Chicken 3. We decorated our nursery with a nature theme, bugs bedding, blue and green walls and a solid Canadian sourced Maple crib. 

KT our oldest loved the crib. She cooed, gurgled and peacefully fell asleep. She might have been the perfect baby. AndiePandie fought the crib with every once of her 8 pounds 6 ounces. She screamed, cried, vomited. Nothing worked, she did not sleep a single night in that crib.  She curled up like a little butter bean, between her dad and I in the big bed, and slept soundly. At that point the crib started to be a home for wayward stuffies. Beckett followed the same path as AndiePandie. He was our little yellow chicken, jaundice and a cluster feeder. The crib was filled was stuffies by this point and there was no room for him. With three babies under 5, we didn't care where we slept, or whom slept in what bed, the main objective was to sleep. I didn't know at the time, but we were a family of co-sleepers. 

Twelve years to the day that we brought that crib home, it looks like we will be taking it down this Mother's Day weekend. 

My heart is heavy knowing there will be no more big, fat Guthrie babies to put in the crib. To say I am unhappy would be untrue. I am blessed with a healthy family and for that I am thankful. I will, however, forever wonder what a future with four, five of even six mini me's may have been like, what their names may have been and who they would have taken after. 

We will gently wrap our crib in soft sheets and protective cover. The crib will sit idle until the day, years from now one of my children whispers in my ear, "Mom, you are going to be a Grandma". 

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Tay River AQUA Giveaway for Mother's Day

We all work hard in our daily lives. Taking time to relax is a gift. Tay River AQUA, is located in beautiful Perth, Ontario. I was invited to attend a day of pampering by the lovely owners at the Tay River with other Ottawa media. This Mother's Day you can give your Mom just that a day of pampering at Tay River AQUA. 

The grounds are stunning and begging to be explored. The hot tubs can fit 25 people at time with room for 100 in total. There is also a chef on site to make your lunch one to remember. 

There is room for a girls day out, bridal party or a fun day away with Mom. 

On site Tay River AQUA also boasts  a red cedar dry sauna, 3 relaxation gazebos, and a fully licensed lounge for your dining needs. As well as a fully equipped gym or you book a service at our medical spa to enhance your time at Tay River. 

I have passes for 2 to a day or evening at AQUA (this includes access to the hot tubs, gazebos, sauna and lounge) Take you Mom for the day, be adventurous or just relax in the calming waters. The winner will be connected on May 20th, 2015. 

Just leave a comment and tell me who you would take to the spa! Enter daily!