My Sweet Marie

Archive for March 2012

On Sunday, Denis and I picked up Heidi for the afternoon while Blake was having his snooze. We headed to Springbank Park and Heidi practised riding her bike. We got our exercise walking quickly trying to keep up. I even got a few sprints in there! By the end of her ride she was getting real good at weaving between people, dogs and other bikes!

We packed a small picnic, a snack really and we had to sit at the same picnic table that she sat at with Gramma and Granpa the week before! Lucky for us, the table was free for us to use! We had fruit, veggies, crackers and they had cheese too! No cheese for me, thank you very much.

We had lots of giggles on the swings,slides and Heidi did the firemen’s pole on her own for the first time! How excited she was. I wonder if she remembered to tell Mommy and Daddy at supper? I’ll bet she did. I hope she remembers to tell them I was right there to be sure she wouldn’t fall and break an arm!

Yesterday was Mel’s 6 week check-up, and the plan was I was going to look after Holly while she and Evelyn Rose went off to the doctor’s. When Holly heard that Mel was going to the dr’s, she went into melt down mode. You see, for 5 weeks Mommy was at the doctor’s and there was no way she was letting that happen again. (For background here, she had broke her membrane at 31 weeks pregnant and had to stay in hospital)

Everyday since Mel is home with the new baby Holly asks “Did you break the glass Mommy?” She thinks Mel broke a glass of water as she overheard us adults talking about Mel breaking her water. So yesterday, Holly was afraid that Mommy broke a glass again!

I walked in ready to play with Holly and she straight out told me she was going with Mommy! I asked her, wouldn’t she prefer to stay and do crafts and with the play-doh? No Meme, I am going, sorry. So off we all went, back to London and Holly and I sat in the waiting room while Mel had her check up! She was ok with waiting. Mel, of course, got a clean bill of health and Holly got to see that you don’t always have to stay at the hospital when you visit the doctors. I guess she got some kind of closure as of right now, today she has not asked if Mommy broke her glass!

We forget that little children are listening and we also don’t realise how they interpret things. In her eyes, mommy broke a glass of water and she was put in the hospital to do her time! Poor thing, whatever you do, do not break a glass in her presence!

Here’s to the princesses and all they teach us!

Sweet Marie

Fifty and loving it!


Supper tonight!


2 Tbsp olive oil
1  green or  red bell peppers or jalapenos, finely diced
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 Tbsp cumin

1 tsp salt
½ tsp black pepper
1 can (14.5 oz.) diced tomatoes
1 small can GF tomato sauce
1 jar salsa (16 oz)
1 Tbsp cilantro, chopped
1 whole chicken cooked, boned, shredded
1 Tbsp lime juice
6 corn tortillas
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese( Dayia if you’re dairy intolerant!)

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Saute the peppers, onion, garlic, cumin, salt and pepper in olive oil. Stir mixture often until softened, about 3 minutes. Add tomatoes, 1 cup salsa, tomato sauce and cilantro. Cook for 5 minutes.

In large bowl combine chicken with lime juice; stir this into the tomato mixture. Spread ½ cup salsa in un-greased 13″x 9″ baking dish; top with 3 corn tortillas (break in pieces to fill gaps). Top with chicken mixture; sprinkle with ½ cup cheese. Top with remaining tortillas. Spread with remaining salsa; sprinkle with remaining cheese.

Bake until cheese is melted, 15 minutes. Garnish with sour cream, jalapenos and more cilantro.

On Saturday we had record high temps, celebrated St.Patrick’s day and that was the perfect storm for a riot in London. Fleming Dr. is a street near Fanshawe College where the party animals live. These said party animals are kids who have left home for the first time and have no boundaries whatsoever! So what did they do? They drank all day, and then they got real stupid.

Facebook and Twitter are great for many a thing, including spreading the word of where there’s a party and that’s what happened. Over 1,000 kids were gathered and things got out of hand. Someone started a fire and a nearby resident called the police. A news crew arrived and not nearly enough police officers. The news crew started filming the hooligans and eventually he abandoned ship when some punk tried to take away his camera. They knocked him to the ground but he got away with his camera.

The police actually backed away as the crowd was getting wild, and the rioters went after the news vehicle. They rocked it, threw things at it, smashed windows and doors with sign posts that they had torn down, and eventually they set it on fire. Video footage of it shows screaming, chanting rioters elated at the sound of blasting explosions! Go to and click on Fleming Drive Riot 2  and see for yourself. I am not exaggerating!

Today, in reading the London Free press, someone had criticized the police for backing off, and here’s the comment I sent in to the Free press:In response to the ‘fearless force’ comment on March 20th, I’d like to point out that there 50 officers against 1,000 high, intoxicated, pumped up rioters, where were you pussycat? The police did the right thing by standing down. My questions to chief Duncan is where was the ERT? Why didn’t they have the fire dpt turn their hoses on that crowd? That would have separated the boys from the men , wouldn’t it? We need to look at inexpensive tools to secure this Fleming Dr, how about security cameras? People, stop criticising the men and women who protect and serve us daily. 

I find it appalling that anyone would criticize the men and women who were out there that night(police force). A) They weren’t there to feel the energy of the crowd and B) they were terribly outnumbered by 20-1! Those are not good numbers people!

What I want to know is, for the parents who have kids that live on Fleming Dr, have you asked them if they were a part of this? How have you handled this? Make your kids own their responsibility and do the time! There has to be some accountability. Luckily we have all kinds of footage on you tube so the police will be doing that for us, but really people, have a talk with those hooligan children of yours! These were not kids that were fighting for peace, or for poverty, these were kids who were drunk and wanted to stir trouble, well they got their wish. They caused trouble and now all of Fanshawe College student body is paying for their stupidity!

I hope that employers hiring students this summer will keep open minds that not all of Fanshawe students are hooligans. I hope those students are expelled and not allowed back in town!

Do you know where your children are?

Sweet Marie

Saturday night was catch up night with Marg & Steve. It was our turn to pick and I had been dying to try out the new restaurant that I watched get built on Colonel Talbot Rd. Every time I’d drive by, on the way to the gym, I’d say, it won’t be long now and finally it is open! So we headed to Risto Dolcetto for some pasta!

I like to wait a month or so when a restaurant opens, that way they’ve worked out most bugs. By the looks of things, if they had any bugs to work out, I didn’t see any sign of them. We were welcomed by some lovely young ladies when we walked in, they took our names and said it would be about 15 minutes before a table would be ready. We sat at the bar and ordered a lovely Chianti to sip while we waited for our table. No biggie there.

I had been told by someone they had a gluten-free menu, so I was psyched to get me some pasta! To my major disappointment, they had gluten-free options but still no pasta! Bummer! I was going to get the Bucatini con Arogosta, it’s pasta with lobster and chiles in a tomato sauce! It sounded delicious but alas, it wasn’t going to be mine tonight. Instead I had the Pesce, a grilled salmon served with a beautiful lemon and sweet pea risotto. It was absolutely delicious, the lemon being just a soft background flavour in the risotto and the walnuts a great touch that I’ve never considered with salmon. Definitely worth ordering again.

Denis ordered the Conchigle, a shell pasta in a tomato sauce and italian sausage and artichoke ragu! He had Steve drooling over his dish and he thoroughly enjoyed it, the dish, not the drooling! He said it had just enough spice but not too hot at all. Steve had the Farfalle with prosciutto in a white wine sauce and said it was good but next time he’s getting the conchigle! Marg ordered the salmon too and hers came with angel hair pasta in a tomato sauce!

We went back to our place for dessert and spanish coffees as I figured they wouldn’t have any gluten-free desserts, like most London eateries. Turns out they have gelato which is gluten-free but I like a brownie or biscotti to nibble on with a coffee or tea! Luckily I baked us some brownies!

Over all I would definitely recommend this place. The service was very good, the food very nicely prepared and presented. All ingredients tasted fresh and homemade. I know that the ‘gluten-free’ aspect is a challenge for any restaurateur, but they are very wise to tap this market! In London, there are not many options for people to dine gluten-free, and perhaps there may only be one in a group of four or ten, but they bring with them a group of four or ten! If customer service is truly the mission of a restaurant, they will offer a few options to those people who have diet restrictions, to which there are so many. Lucky for us, Dolcetto is one of these places!

To see their menu go to or go check them out for yourself at 3020 Colonel Talbot Rd or call them at 519-652-5617!

Yours in Dining,

Sweet Marie

Yesterday I had Blake and Heidi for the day. It was the last day of March break and so we thought we’d give Tasha, their sitter, the day off! So bright and shiny, they arrive to have breakfast with me! Heidi called the night before and made me promise to not eat till she got there! We used to have breakfast together all the time, she loves it. Ok so I waited and we shared a lovely meal of scrambled eggs, fresh fruit and they had raisin english muffins. Yummy and nutritious!

After breakfast, they run to the living room to play and Blake stops dead in his tracks in front of my wine rack and says “OOOH Meme’s juice!” Where do they hear this stuff? How does he know I love wine? Really have I had that much in front of him? Oh my, I need to re-evaluate my wine habit!

So we went to the gym and the kids played in the play room while I worked out. It’s a fair trade-off, believe me they are having way more fun then me! On the way home, I said to Heidi, I think I’ll stop in the grocery store, I need eggs and milk. She asked to not do that, let’s just go home she says. Ok,I say, but I was going to get you guys a treat there. So we carry on and a few minutes later she says “Well, Meme if you want to go to the store, we can do that” How thoughtful of that little girl, can you believe the wits of this one? The treat she wanted? Oh she wants a mango! Yep a mango, not chips or chocolate, a mango! Gotta love that!

When we got home, Stephanie, our 11 year-old neighbor, came over to spend time with us. What a treat she is, she loves the kids and they love her and so the afternoon flew by with her help! They did crafts while Blake slept, none the wiser! When Blake woke up, we went over to Steph’s to give Allie, their dog, some loving! I’m not sure who had more hair on them at the end of the visit, the dog or us!

By the time we got back from our walk to the park, Pepe had arrived and the kids were all over him and he loved it! Blake screeched when Pepe walked in the door, he jumped in his arms and hugged him like he hadn’t seen him in years! What a kid! Heidi had to get in there too for her hugs too, and that’s ok as Pepe has a ‘Love Bank Account’ for each of his grand-children and those accounts are always full!

What have you heard a child say lately? Please share with us all!

Sweet Marie

Today I had the pleasure of getting my fridge fixed,  not neutered, repaired! As in, the freezer isn’t making ice or keeping things frozen! It all started on the weekend when Denis says “have you noticed the fridge is running on and on?” Um, no…I hadn’t! I don’t know what I’d do if I lived alone, this man is on it all the time! I do not notice this stuff, do you?

So, I called Sears where we bought the monstrous thing 13 years ago and we booked a time that worked for us all! Today is the day. I get a phone call from the tech, before he arrives, with a bunch of questions. Why call me? Really do you think I can help you? It’s a black fridge, that’s all I know! He asked a few good questions to which I was able to answer, yes there is frost on the back panel, no it won’t make ice, blah,bla, bla.

Denis’ big concern was that if it was the compressor, we’d have to go out and buy a new fridge, not something we have budgeted for! We better get on that and save a bit in case we need to soon. As it turns out, it was our self-defrost that wasn’t working and the compressor kept running to keep the fridge part cold. That makes sense doesn’t it?

So, not a huge repair dollar-wise, the part is only $50 but in all with labor and the trip out it’s going to cost us over $200! That’s better than going out and buying a new fridge though isn’t it?

So folks, that is today’s dilemma for me! I think I’ll survive and perhaps start a little nest egg for that new fridge, just in case!

Keep Cool!

Sweet Marie

I just got off the phone with Heidi. This is the newest thing for us, Heidi calls and we chat for a fairly long period of time. Usually she calls and immediately asks for Pepe, thanks a lot!

You have to love 5 year olds, well she’s almost 5. She gives the absolute truth, whether you want it or not. I guess they want to the maple farm today, did the hay ride in the bush, the pancakes and sausages, the whole she-bang! Exactly what I had planned for Friday, our day together for march break!! I better come up with a new plan.

When Heidi is on the phone, she carries the conversation. She wants to know what you did….all day! Well we went for a walk…then what Meme? Well, we had lunch…what did you have? Well we had tortillas and bean dip with crackers…hmm, is there any left? What 5-year-old wants bean dip?

Eventually while she is chatting with Pepe or myself, Blake will come on the scene and demand the phone. She’s pretty good about letting him say hi to us, we love this. This is how it goes….every time. Hi Pepe, Daddy’s truck….bye! It varies with Hi Meme, daddy’s truck  …bye! He’ll be a chatter bug in no time too…I am sure of this!

Of course, Heidi grabs the phone back and keeps on drilling us…we get a real kick out of this! Meme do you work tomorrow? What time? Are you going to the gym? What will you do there? Did you do laundry today? My Mom did. What did you make for dinner? My mom made salmon and squash with maple syrup from the farm. It was so good. I said “Wow, Mom’s a good cook, I wonder where she learned that?” Meme you showed her how to cook, did you forget? That gets her a laugh. Her goal in life to make us smile, I am sure of this.

Meme, can I talk to Pepe again? Pepe is back on…Pepe did you do put the swing up yet? Did you see any birds today Pepe, we saw robins in our yard, Mom says that means it’s spring. Is it Pepe? Denis says, Heidi you are so smart, and she agrees! Gotta love that! He says how do you know you’re so smart? She says because my Mom said so…then it must be so.

Have you spoken to a 5-year-old on the phone lately? If not, just randomly dial one up…bet you’ll smile!


Sweet Marie