Monday, March 17, 2014

dabels do dip

We used to get TLC but switched cable providers and now we don't get it anymore. So that means we used to get Honey Boo Boo but we no longer do.

Which is both sad and unfortunate. For we really did enjoy the Boo Boo. Remember the 'sketti episode? When they made their fanciest and favourite meal? It was spaghetti with margarine and ketchup and…..barf.

Like I said, we really did enjoy the Boo Boo, for the Boo Boo made me feel pretty spectacular about myself.

Pre-tty spec-tac-ular, knowwhatimean?

Anyway, I truly believe that almost every family, if not every family, has a meal akin to 'sketti. We don't say it out loud or tell people we eat it because….

Well, because it just isn't right.

But lately, our oldest foster son has let it spill about our own personal 'sketti. He told our foster agency and his social worker and he made it sound like the bestest and fanciest and most wonderful dinner. He loves it. Then the other day I made a joke on Facebook about making dinner and having it take 13 minutes and people wanted to know what it was and I was like, "Ummmmm, nooooooo way am I telling you about what we are eating for dinner."

But I have decided to show you the slum side of the Dabels and share my most bestest and fanciest and wonderful recipe with you.

Promise you won't judge? What was that? Too late? All right then.

We call it….. dun dun dun…..Dip.

Yep, we call it Dip. We do not serve it to guests. We do not even acknowledge its existence. Dip? What is Dip? I do not have any idea what you are talking about. See how that goes?

Except we forgot to tell foster kid one and so the cat is out of the bag. When I ask my people what they want for dinner they usually say Dip. Because they love it. But really………I don't know what to say……

Here goes:
Brown some ground beef
Add red onions
Add kidney beans
Add Hot and Spicy ketchup. Like lots and lots and lots and lots of ketchup. Until it's runny like a chili.

You can put it in a casserole dish and put sour cream on it and cheese and melt it in the oven for a few minutes. At least, that's what fancy Dip looks like. But we don't even do that. We put it in bowls and throw some cheese on it. And then we use tortilla chips to dig out that dip and put it in our bellies.

And now I hang my head. Ground beef and ketchup. Yep, that is how the Dabels do Dip.

I am so so sorry you are on the receiving end of this little secret. You may go throw up now.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

sparkling hill. the story of the spa.

Okay, I can't take it anymore. I need to tell you about the time I went to the spa. Here it goes.... Once upon a time, I went to the spa. I am now one of those girls who says things like, "When I went to the spa..." Because I have. Been to the spa, I mean. I took this lovely little getaway with some friends and we drove the seven hours so we could go to the spa. And do spa things. Which we did, by the way. And it was incredible.

And to the fine people at Sparkling Hill, I want to say thank you for hosting me and my motley crue at your sparkling and most phenomenal hotel.

It was worth every second of the drive. I was in heaven all weekend. Three nights away, no school, no kids, no husband. Just me and my friends at the spa. Although, I will say, Sparkling Hill is built for couples as well. Completely. Bathtubs in the living room. Bathrooms with no doors (private toilets, though. Phew.) Walk through showers. I must get the man there sometime for a couples massage in the romantic, elegant little couples rooms. It sounds divine, youknowwhatimean?


I can hardly wait. He can, but I can't. But, what does he know anyway?

Sparkling Hill is in Vernon, B.C. You know what else is in Vernon? My mummy and daddy. So this was perfect because it meant some two on one time with the folks in their town. That's never happened before, me being there without anyone else, just visiting for the afternoon with my sweet parents, whom I adore.

After our afternoon together I took them for a little, wee tour of the 'wellness hotel' because if there is one thing I know for sure it is that my mummy likes a view and wow! What a view.

The Serenity Room is banana town. If banana town is code for heaven on earth, and in this case it is, then this room was banana town. Floor to ceiling windows. One wall of windows overlooks the hills and mountains. The other wall of windows overlooks the lake. My gosh, do I love me a lake view. To be on top of a mountain overlooking a lake is my idea of perfection. In case you were wondering what my idea of perfection is.

This is it.

There were saunas, many many saunas. All kinds. And they smelled amazing. Actually, the whole place smelled amazing. Even the water had a flavor. I swear it did and I drank a ton of that delicious mountain water. I couldn't get enough. But back to the saunas. There was like 100 of them and they were all different. The crystal sauna, the rose sauna, the dry sauna and the cold sauna (that actually had ice on the walls, brrrrrr). Okay, I think there were only seven altogether but seriously, I have never seen anything like it. You just walk from sauna to sauna and back again. Whenever you want! When was the last time I got to do things for me whenever I wanted? As it turns out, I do not have a high threshold for saunas. I sort of maxed out a lot sooner than most of my friends but I will concede that the selection is stellar and the facility is impeccable. There are pools, indoor and out. A pool, outside, with a light snow coming down and stars in the sky?



And thank you, of course.

While I was there I had a facial and a hot stone massage. I almost cried when the massage was over for never ever should a thing as wonderful as a hot stone massage come to an end. Ever. It was tragic. I loved it.

The food. Amazing. It accommodated all the weirdos in my group who don't eat certain things. Like gluten. Weirdos. The breakfast buffet was lovely. The dinner in the fancy restaurant (and by fancy I mean dress code!) blew my mind a wee bit. The service and the staff? Honestly, I don't even know what to say, except it was the nicest place I have ever been to and the fanciest for sure. I was pampered and spoiled. I even read an entire novel. I can't get over it. I just can't.

I mean, look at the fireplace in the room! The entire place was dripping with Swarovski crystals. It was the most sparkling of places in the history of sparkling places.

I will go back. Either with my love or with my friends or with my mum and my sister. I don't know yet but I will go back. And if you go (and you most certainly should) you must tell me because I will go back with you too.

Here are some pictures. Some of them I borrowed from Sparkling Hill and some of the view shots are mine. My iPhone fails me when it comes to taking awesome pictures that do a place such as this justice. You'll have to just go yourself and see. You must go.

You must.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

cats and kids

Soooooo, I am dying to tell you about my spa weekend/road trip/girls getaway I took a couple of weeks ago but I have been waiting for the time to do it justice. And then, all of a sudden, there was time and I was all "I'm too tired to do justice!"

Because I am a doer of justice. Just ask the kids.

So this is not a post about the spa although, hang tight, because it's COMING!!!!!


I feel the need to yell that, in bold, for whatever reason. So anyway, this is probably just a post about the fact that I have not written anything in forever and well, my poor lil bloggy blog.

It is tragic, isn't it? I do have so much to tell you. There is just so very much to say but when? Where? How? Four university classes and six children and papers and presentations and reading....

Oh, heaven have mercy upon my soul! THE READING!!! There are no words  to express how many words I have read in the last three months. Actually, there is one word.....eleventybillion. I have read eleventybillion words in the last three months. And not all of them even remotely interesting.

Cough cough *GEOLOGY* cough cough.

I seriously hate Geology.

Anyway, if I had time I would tell you about when I took 50% of the children to the doctor, two were of my loins, and she looked at the two that were of my loins and said, "Wow, their eyes are huge and so wide set."

And I said, "Yeah, they have my eyes."

And she said, "There are some syndromes that present with wide set eyes, but on your kids it looks great."

Me, "Ummmmm, ...???...???...???...???"

Or I would totally tell you about the time I argued with a dead white existentialist via essay about whether or not people are born with personalities. I may have accused him of not having children of his own and if he did then he did not spend near enough time with them as toddlers because anyone who has owned a toddler is well aware that they do, in fact, have their own personalities. Anyone ever met a toddler without a personality? Yeah, me either. Anyway, I think the professoress agreed with me because this was her comment, "I'm not a mum, but I've raised several cats, and they all have strong personalities from about the 4th month of life..."

Cats and kids, man. Cats and kids.

I love her.

Or I would tell you about the time I went to the spa with some seriously excellent women whom I love love love. And we had the most amazing time. I was so relaxed. I read a novel. A WHOLE novel in one day.

But I will save that for next time...