I’ve been off the blog grid

It has been approximately 1.5 years since my last post.

It is safe to say I have been off the blogging grid before I even got started. As you can imagine, a lot has happened in that time span. I challenged my anxious thoughts, switched jobs and moved from the GTA to beautiful Muskoka. Probably one of my greatest decisions.

I now work in the tourism and hospitality industry and boy is it ever fun to do media relations for! I am even fortunate enough to photograph for social media, so to catch you up on what beautiful Muskoka has to offer take a look at some of my favourite captures from all four seasons.

I’ll be back blog word, I haven’t forgotten about you!

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Protein Energy Bites

For the past two weeks I’ve been eating these little protein energy balls before or after a strenuous workout with my trainer and they seem to do the trick! It makes for a nice change from protein bars since they are filled with nutritious super foods like flax and chia seeds….oh and they are SUPER easy to make!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup reduced fat peanut butter
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 2 tbsp flax seeds
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 2 tbsp cacao nibs
  • 1/2 scoop vanilla protein powder (I use plant based brand Vega One)
  • handful of goji berries
  • handful of dried cranberries

Directions

Stir all ingredients together in a bowl; mixing dry ingredients into the peanut butter and honey. When mixed place in fridge to chill for approximately 30-45 minutes (or until you remember). Remove from fridge and shape into small balls.

1-2 balls/serving should help provide you with the protein and energy you need for your workout or last minute breakfast. I find the chia, flax and oats help make it chewy enough so that I am satisfied with a smaller portion. I estimated 3-4 points plus values per ball depending on size.

tortellini soup

Quick Tortellini Soup

Generally, when I come home from the work or the gym I am hungry and I want something FAST!

This easy weight watchers soup sure does the trick and is perfect for leftovers throughout the week.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pkg of prepared cheese tortellini
  • 1 can of diced or crushed tomatoes (low sodium is recommended for the weight conscious)
  • 1 pkg chicken or vegetable broth, fat free, low sodium
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 2-3 cups spinach
  • 1-2tbsp garlic
  • oregano seasoning
  • Italian seasoning

Directions:

Brown garlic in a large saucepan coated with cooking spray on medium-high heat for approximately 1 minute, then add chopped onion until softened for another minute.

Add broth and tortellini; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes as pasta cooks.

Add spinach, tomatoes and seasonings to taste and simmer for another 5 minutes.

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Yields 1 cup per 4 points plus serving

A Standard Canadian Winter

Currently as I write this post it is a warm 3 degrees Celsius…yup to us Canadians that is warm folks!

Us Canadians (with the exception of B.C and their insanely warm weather this winter) can say we have survived! We have survived the 30 cm of snow overnight, the – 40’s in February, black ice and the countless snow squalls while driving. And you want to know how we do it? We go outside and make the best of it.

How do I make the best of a Canadian winter? You can find me…

but sometimes pictures are better than words…

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Winter doesn’t stop an avid cottager

My family are avid cottagers.

What does this mean? It means you can find us rain or shine, slush or snow, fog or ….I think you get the picture. We love to cottage no matter what the season and in doing so we have some pretty great adventures.

Of course summer is one of my favourite seasons, and fall is a second runner up, but winter has some pretty spectacular scenery that actually makes putting up with the -40 temperatures seem all worth it when you head north for the weekend.

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Blue Mountain Adventures

In Ontario you do not have the biggest selection of ski hills in comparison to the mountains out west in Alberta and B.C, and to the East in Quebec. But us Ontarians manage to get by with local ski hills and our own mini Whistler-like village and ski resort known as Blue Mountain. The hill and resort is located in Collingwood Ontario and is approximately only a 2-2.5 hour drive from Toronto and the surrounding GTA. The close proximity to Toronto makes for a perfect weekend escape to a picturesque winter scene without breaking the bank.

I wanted to share some photos from my past trips this winter as I hope I can help capture some of the resorts’ magic.

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Zuchinni crust pizza

Zucchini Crust Pizza

If I had to eat only one vegetable for the rest of my life, I’d have to say zucchini.

Why?

Because it is delicious steamed, baked, fried or raw.
Because it is super easy to grow in your beginner garden.
Because it is a low calorie vegetable with only 17 calories/ 100 g.
And most importantly you can make the BEST low cal pizza ever! (in my opinion)

After making this delicious zuchinni crust pizza, I made it three additional times the same week because yes…it was that good! So if you are looking for a delicious healthy pizza alternative, look no further, because this may be your saving grace!

Ingredients:

For the crust
3 cups shredded zucchini
1/3 cup flour
1 egg
2-3 TBSP grated parmesan
Tomato sauce (or bruschetta if you are feeling adventurous)
For flavour add seasonings such as garlic powder, Italian seasoning and oregano.

Toppings
Anything you like to eat on a normal pizza will do, so the toppings are endless! Some of my favourites include feta, green olives, hot bell peppers, spinach and tomatoes.

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. While your oven is heating prepare and combine all of your crust ingredients in a bowl. Use a low fat cooking spray to grease your pizza pan or baking sheet. Spread your zucchini crust mixture in a thin even layer on your greased pan.

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Place your crust in the oven and bake for 10-12 minutes. In the meantime you can prepare your toppings. Take your crust out of the oven and evaluate whether most of the liquid has evaporated. If the crust still looks quite moist put it back in for 2-3 more minutes but don’t worry too much as you still have to bake the toppings.  When the crust looks firm enough for your likings, add as many toppings as your heart desires.

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Place back in oven and bake for 2-3 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Total time: Approx. 25 minutes