DIY Honey Lemon Candy

✧・゚: * We wish you a [belated] Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! 🎄🎁 *:・゚✧

Here in Calgary, it is snappy cold. It is so cold that I seldom leave the house unless I absolutely have to freeze my face off. Yesterday, I needed to run some errands and happened to stumble upon a pharmacy that had Pfizer vaccines. The timing was right, so I ended up getting my 3rd Covid-19 booster shot. So far so good – I have a sore arm, but otherwise I feel fine. These days, I am still trying to avoid the general public as much as possible without resorting to a complete hermit lifestyle. The temperature here is disgusting, and there is nothing glamorous about staying frosty. Last night, it was -30°C (celsius) which is stupidly #cold.

Tis’ Flu Season Too

Not only is it unbearably cold AF, but it is also cold season (pun intended) ❄ I know that everyone is sick and tired of the pandemic so I don’t want to harp about the importance of getting vaccinated. I did what was best for me and you need to do what is best for you. I know that my immune system is not very good and I even wrote about my crappy immune system in an older blog post. I try my best to stay healthy, but sometimes sickness cannot be prevented regardless of how cautious and healthy you are. Sure, you can sanitize your hands and wear a mask all you want, but at the end of the day, there’s still a chance that you will get sick.

(◔_◔)っThink about it this way: It’s not a matter of if you catch it. It’s a matter of when you catch it. 😷

Thank goodness that I am not sick right now *knock on wood* but when I am sick, I usually get a sore throat. If I don’t get a sore throat, it’s usually a bad head cold. Head colds and sore throats are icky, and I really don’t care for the store-bought throat lozenges. The most effective throat lozenges usually contain eucalyptus which is so overpowering and makes me wanna gag. Eukalyptus is definitely an acquired taste. Sure, an alternative is store-bought vitamin C drops which are pretty palatable but they can be quite pricy for what they are, and I much rather get my mega doses of Vitamin C from fresh citrus fruits! 🍋🍋

I hope that my dear readers aren’t sick right now and that everyone stays healthy this holiday season. Whether or not you have a sore throat right now, I have a special honey lemon candy recipe to share with you today. This recipe tastes like store-bought candy but it is healthier and cheaper than what you would typically find in the supermarket. To be honest, I did not change the original recipe all that much; I used slightly less sugar in mine. Here is the link to the original candy recipe: https://www.manusmenu.com/honey-hard-candy

Even though the author says that you need a candy thermometer, I haven’t been able to find one. I made this recipe a handful of times without a candy thermometer and it worked fine. You really need to keep a close eye on the candy or you might end up with burnt sugar instead. An alternative to a candy thermometer is to take a cold bowl of water, and using a spoon, scoop some of the mixture out of the pot and transfer it to the bowl of water. If the candy sticks to the spoon and hardens right away, then that’s the texture you want. Also, this recipe calls for 6 tbsp. of sugar but I prefer to use 4 tbsp. of sugar for a tarter lemony flavor 🍋 It really depends on your personal preference! 😅

Not convinced yet?

Here are some photos of my cute heart-shaped candy creations. I hope that you enjoy making this DIY honey lemon candy recipe as much as I did. If you enjoyed this recipe and would like me to share more candy recipes in the future, please let me know in the comments below ↓ Have a safe and healthy New Year everyone! 🎉😷

Thanks for stopping by! ♥

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Lingering Hope

My goal for the New Year is to upload more content without setting a set-in-stone schedule. Lately, I have been bothered by the amount of negativity taking place in the WP community. That being said, I am not going to let one Torontonian blogger dim my sparkle! ✨ I recently caught on that she has been purposely shadow-banning me on her blog by removing me from her follower list and sending all of my comments to her spam folder. Seriously, who goes out of their way to remove followers?

This past week, I have been meditating and reflecting on a few things and I realize that drama, both offline and online, negatively impacts my mental health and well-being. This week, I started cutting back on the amount of time I spend on my phone, especially social media, even though the bulk of the drama is taking place in the WordPress community. I don’t think that she and her followers (some are my followers as well) know that I have read their comments. Be careful what you say, because not only do your words dig deep but they also say a lot about your character. Personally, I love how Ryan Biddulph from Twitter handles this kinda thing.

Lingering Hope

Disclaimer: This poem was originally posted as its own daughter page, so nobody stumbled upon it. Even though this poem is unrelated to my little rant *above* I still wanted to include the poem in this blog post, as a way to bring more content to you all. If you like this poem, feel free to check out my other poetry musings here

Thanks for reading! ♡

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12 Days of Finals

Merry Christmas elf-ryone! 💚 Thanks, @ElsieLMC for coming up with that clever introduction. It’s very punny and I hope you don’t mind that I used your intro here. This year, I wanted to dress up my son as a cute elf but was unable to find an elf outfit. Maybe it will happen next year! 🎅🎄 I wanted to share with you some photos of our little Christmas tree. Most of the decorations came from Dollarama. As many of you know, this girl is frugal. Even this trademark wrapping paper came from Dollarama. 😊

12 Days of Finals 📖

When I was in university, I wrote a rough outline for a parody of the song, “The 12 Days of Christmas.” I never got around to editing and uploading this parody and at one point, I even forgot that I had the rough draft on my notepad. I figured that there is no better time than Christmas Day to upload this parody for all of my readers. If you enjoyed reading this parody, feel free to check out my other poetry musings here.

[Verse 1]
On the first day of finals,
My professor gave to me
A ton of anxiety.

[Verse 2]
On the second day of finals,
My professor gave to me
Two Advil pills,
And a ton of anxiety.

[Verse 3]
On the third day of finals,
My professor gave to me
Three Dunkin’ runs,
Two Advil pills,
And a ton of anxiety.

[Verse 4]
On the fourth day of finals,
My professor gave to me
Four restless nights,
Three Dunkin’ runs,
Two Advil pills,
And a ton of anxiety.

[Verse 5]
On the fifth day of finals,
My professor gave to me
Five all-nighters,
Four restless nights,
Three Dunkin’ runs,
Two Advil pills,
And a ton of anxiety.

[Verse 6]
On the sixth day of finals,
My professor gave to me
Six study parities,
Five all-nighters,
Four restless nights,
Three Dunkin’ runs,
Two Advil pills,
And a ton of anxiety.

[Verse 7]
On the seventh day of finals,
My professor gave to me
Seven Venti coffees,
Six study parties,
Five all-nighters,
Four restless nights,
Three Dunkin’ runs,
Two Advil pills,
And a ton of anxiety.

[Verse 8]
On the eigth day of finals,
My professor gave to me
Eight sugar crashes,
Seven Venti coffees,
Six study parties,
Five all-nighters,
Four restless nights,
Three Dunkin’ runs,
Two Advil pills,
And a ton of anxiety.

[Verse 9]
On the ninth day of finals,
My professor gave to me
Nine cram-sessions,
Eight sugar crashes,
Seven Venti coffees,
Six study parties,
Five all-nighters,
Four restless nights,
Three Dunkin’ runs,
Two Advil pills,
And a ton of anxiety.

[Verse 10]
On the tenth day of finals,
My professor gave to me
Ten people praying,
Nine cram-sessions,
Eight sugar crashes,
Seven Venti coffees,
Six study parties,
Five all-nighters,
Four restless nights,
Three Dunkin’ runs,
Two Advil pills,
And a ton of anxiety.

[Verse 11]
On the eleventh day of finals,
My professor gave to me
Eleven temper tantrums,
Ten people praying,
Nine cram-sessions,
Eight sugar crashes,
Seven Venti coffees,
Six study parties,
Five all-nighters,
Four restless nights,
Three Dunkin’ runs,
Two Advil pills,
And a ton of anxiety.

[Verse 12]
On the twelth day of finals,
My professor gave to me
Twelve clocks a-ticking,
Eleven temper tantrums,
Ten people praying,
Nine cram-sessions,
Eight sugar crashes,
Seven Venti coffees,
Six study parties,
Five all-nighters,
Four restless nights,
Three Dunkin’ runs,
Two Advil pills,
And a ton of anxiety!

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Healthier Banana Muffins

Disclaimer: Now I can officially say that we are all caught up with the recipes! Any new recipes that are posted in the future will be new blog posts. I am happy about that! 😄 This recipe was originally posted as a separate page on June 10, 2019. I changed it to reflect the direction that this blog is headed in. Thank you for understanding! 🙊🍌

Since I am trying to eat as clean as possible by cutting down on my sugar consumption, I wanted a muffin recipe that I could easily grab for a quick, easy breakfast. I crave carbs so if I am going to eat carbs, I would prefer them to be cleaner than what you would typically find at the grocery store or local coffee shop. Finally, I found a recipe that I really like so I wanted to share it with you. I modified the recipe slightly which was based on the original recipe from www.gimmedelicious.com.

My photo didn’t do these muffins much justice but I added a photo anyways. Voila! My family loves these muffins and it is so easy to whip up a batch when you need a quick muffin fix. Let’s get started, shall we? 

HEALTHIER BRAN MUFFINS

Servings: 12                          Time: 45 minutes                          Difficulty: easy

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup mashed bananas (approx. 2 medium bananas)
  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Grease or line 12 muffin cups with paper liners.
  2. Combine whole wheat flour, salt, and baking soda. Set aside.
  3. Crack eggs into a bowl and whisk the egg. Then add plain yogurt, maple syrup, mashed bananas, and coconut oil to the egg mixture. For a smooth consistency, use a blender to pulverize the wet ingredients. I use my Vitamix blender but a simple blender works too.
  4. Add wet ingredients to the bowl of dry ingredients and stir gently with a plastic spatula until ingredients are evenly mixed.
  5. Spoon into well-greased or lined muffin tins.
  6. Bake muffins for 20-22 minutes at 350ºF.
banana-2850841_960_720
Mind your banana. Photo from www.pixabay.com

Thanks for stopping by! ♥

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Banana Bran Muffins

Disclaimer: This recipe was originally posted a very long time ago in a land far, far away. I am reposting the recipe as a blog post to reflect the direction that this blog is headed in. Thank you for understanding! 🙊🍌

I have a challenge for you! Using everything you have in your cupboard, come up with a recipe and actually make it. You can “cheat” by referencing google for inspiration if you need some ideas. Tomorrow, do the exact same thing. I bet that you will come up with two different recipes without the need to buy any of your ingredients. Keep repeating this process and make a mental note to add your recipes to a database for easy access. If you do this for 30 days, then you should end up with ~20-30 unique recipes for your family.

I live in Canada and our degrees are measured in Celsius, not Fahrenheit. For baking purposes, I use Fahrenheit because it’s universal and easier to follow. But if you tell me that the temperature today is 45 outside, you’re not fooling anyone given that it’s the middle of November and there is snow on the ground. I will assume that you have mastered teleportation and are probably enjoying a Daiquiri on some tropical island….. and you didn’t invite me, how rude.

This week I made banana bran muffins and the batter was delicious. However, the muffins were dry and slightly overcooked, so I would suggest baking them for 15-18 minutes at 350ºF instead of 20 minutes at 375ºF. You can find the original recipe here.

BANANA BRAN MUFFINS

Servings: 12                          Time: 40 minutes                          Difficulty: easy

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup mashed bananas (approx. 2 medium bananas)
  • 1 1/2 cups bran mix
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup flaked coconut (optional)
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup canola oil

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Grease or line 12 muffin cups with paper liners.
  2. Combine bran with whole wheat flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, salt and coconut (optional).
  3. Crack eggs into a bowl and whisk the egg. Then add milk, mashed bananas, milk, and oil to the egg mixture. For a smooth consistency, use a blender to pulverize the wet ingredients. I use my Vitamix blender but a simple blender works too.
  4. Add wet ingredients to the bowl of dry ingredients and stir gently with a plastic spatula until ingredients are evenly mixed.
  5. Spoon into well-greased or lined muffin tins.
  6. Bake muffins for 15-18 minutes at 350ºF.
banana-2850841_960_720
Mind your banana. Photo from  http://www.pixabay.com

Thanks for stopping by! ♥

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Classic Shortbread Cookies

Disclaimer: This recipe was originally posted as a separate page. I changed it to reflect the direction that this blog is headed in. At this rate, I only have 2 more recipes to upload which are banana muffin recipes. These recipes don’t feel very festive but I am still planning to post them before the end of the year. Ideally, I would like to share a new recipe each week, but I know that this goal is overly ambitious. In a perfect world, there would be more recipes.

(っ◔◡◔)っ Isn’t my mom’s mini Christmas tree adorable? 🥰

Despite feeling sick during the Christmas Holidays back in 2019, I attempted to make shortbread cookies that year and failed miserably. My advice is to let the butter rest at room temperature until it is totally soft.

👉 The butter must be soft in order for this recipe to work!

I made the mistake of beating the butter while it was still partly chilled which resulted in pie crust cookies. You don’t want that.

CLASSIC SHORTBREAD COOKIES

Difficulty: medium

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup corn starch
  • 1/2 cup icing sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups sifted all purpose flour

DIRECTIONS

  1. Beat butter until creamy but not oily.
  2. Sift dry ingredients four times; add to creamed mixture a little at a time.
  3. Work ingredients with a spoon as long as possible, then turn mixture on floured board and knead until mixture cracks slightly.
  4. Pat to 1/3″ thickness.
  5. Cut with fancy cookie cutters and bake at 325 degrees F for 20 minutes.

Now that we are approaching the Christmas holidays, I encourage you to give this recipe a try. Feel free to let me know what you think in the comments section below ↓ I love reading your comments! 😊

Thanks for stopping by!

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Creature of the Night

Disclaimer: This poem was originally posted as a separate daughter page, so nobody stumbled upon it. I am editing and re-publishing all of my poems to reflect the direction that this blog is headed in. Thank you for understanding. If you like this poem, feel free to check out my other poetry musings here.

Thanks for reading! ♡

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Sugar Cookies

Disclaimer: This recipe was originally posted as a separate page. I changed it to reflect the direction that this blog is headed in. Thank you for understanding! 😊✨

Here is my favourite cookie recipe of all time! You may remember seeing this recipe from an older blog post that I posted back in December 2019! 😅 I love making mini Christmas cookies and decorating them with cute sprinkles. If you live in Canada, you can buy these sprinkles at Bulk Barn. I also like to package these cookies in tins to give away as hostess gifts. When my now-husband and I were first dating, I gave these cookies to his family as an attempt to win them over and I think it worked. My husband and I have been married for 5 years now, so I believe that the saying is true: the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach.

Image-5
A close-up shot of what these miniature cookies look like. I wanted all of the stars to look the same, all of the snowmen to look the same, etc. There are 9 different shapes featured here: 1. snowman 2. snow-bear 3. snowman 4. bell 5. Christmas tree 6. gingerbread man 7. holly 8. star 9. stocking

These cookies are a timeless classic and are totally worth the hard labor it took to make them. Just kidding! Decorating them is a lot of fun and it doesn’t feel like work to me. If you enjoy baking, you’ll probably enjoy making these cookies. The best part about mini cookies? You can eat 10 of them in one sitting without feeling guilty about it!

SUGAR COOKIES

Image-7
Heavily filtered photos meant for Instagram but they will have to do. In the future, I will take new photos with a decent camera. I just wanted to give you an idea of what these miniature cookies look like. 😊

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 cups of flower
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • cling film (optional)

DIRECTIONS

  1. Combine sugar, flour, baking powder, salt, cream of tartar, and baking soda.
  2. Add butter to mixture and combine until crumbly.
  3. Add eggs and vanilla to mixture.
  4. Roll out dough and wrap in cling film (optional).
  5. Chill in fridge for approx. 1 hour.
  6. Slice dough with fancy cookie cutters and place on cookie sheet.
  7. Bake at 350 degrees F for 8-10 minutes.

I encourage you to give this recipe a try. Feel free to let me know what you think in the comments section below ↓ I love reading your comments ❤️

Thanks for stopping by!

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