So long… For Now

I’ve kept this blog for 7 months as part of a program I’ve been taking through McMaster University. I have really enjoyed blogging  but, as my class comes to an end, so too does this blog. I’ll be taking another class in the summer and, with work, school, and home life, I don’t think I can commit to regular posts, at least not any worth reading.

Who knows, though? Maybe after a month or two, I’ll feel like chatting again.

For now, I am going to focus on crossing a few more things off my 40 before 40 list and I’m also feeling the urge to sign up for another half marathon… We’ll see!

I truly, truly appreciate you following along and reading this little blog of mine. Your comments made this project feel like fun, instead  of just work.

Until we meet again here, you can find me on Twitter or Instagram if you feel so inclined!

XO Claire

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Two Years of Oakville Claire

You might not know this about me, but I’ve lived in a few different cities because of my husband’s work. And, in a few days, it will be two years since we moved from Edmonton to Oakville.

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I was going to write a post about my feelings on moving (okay, another post: others here, here) but then I read this post and it was like someone had written the post I wanted to write, only it is funnier and less whiney than the one I would have actually written. When you are reading it, just replace “New York” with “Edmonton” (you’re going to have to use a little imagination here, okay?) and replace “Moscow” with “Oakville”.

I’m still mourning Edmonton Claire but reading this post gave me a little pep talk.

Oakville Claire doesn’t have to be a such a downer.

Oakville Claire can be great.

 

Easter Weekend Trip

How was everyone’s Easter weekend?

We crossed the border and headed to Rochester, New York for the long weekend. Even though it’s not exactly a stress-free experience travelling with two small children, we had a great time.

We headed there with the purpose of visiting The Strong National Museum of Play.

Museum of Play

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I can’t say enough good things about the museum; it’s honestly the most amazing place for small children. There are so many different sections and different places for kids to play and imagine in. Neither Reid or Ramona wanted to leave when it was time.

image1 (4).JPGOf course, we couldn’t take a trip to Rochester without also visiting Dinosaur BBQ and eating way too much food.

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Unfortunately, after a day at the museum, the kids were pretty maxed out by the time we got to the restaurant which meant that, though the food was amazing, the company left a lot to be desired.

Truthfully, I had been feeling like my life was “all work and no play”, between work, school and my homelife, so this weekend was really rejuvenating for me. On one of my friend’s Instagram photos, she was wearing a sweatshirt that said: “When in doubt, vacation”. I agree. Does the trick every time.

The Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe

I’ve been trying SO HARD to muster up the energy to blog lately but, truthfully, I’m feeling a bit “blogged out”. I have a lot of thoughts and am feeling a lot of feelings but to write them down right now feels… hard. Not hard as in “my feelings are deep and difficult” but hard as in “I’m too lazy to type stuff”.

So, today, all I have for you is THE best chocolate chip cookie recipe I have ever come across. I promise you. Truly the best.

Paul got me The Clinton St. Baking Co. Cookbook a few years ago and their chocolate chunk cookie recipe is one I always go straight to when I’m in an “I just feel like a classic chocolate chip cookie and I don’t care how much refined sugar is in it” mood.

Clinton Street Baking

Luckily for you all, their cookie recipe is posted on their website and I highly recommend you give it a try.

Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Recipe by The Clinton St. Baking Co.

Makes 18 to 20 cookies

  • 2 sticks + 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 cups plus ¼ cup plus 1tablespoon all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 3/4 cups semisweet chocolate chunks (see the Note on page 193)
  1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. If using a convection oven, turn the oven to 275 degrees.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream together the butter, sugars, vanilla and cinnamon on medium speed, making sure to stop and scrape the bowl down. This will take 3 to 4 minutes.
  3. Add the egg and mix on medium – low speed until combined.
  4. Whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt in a separate bowl and add all at once to the batter. Mix the dough together on low speed until combined, making sure to stop and scrape down the bowl so that all the flour is incorporated.
  5. Fold the chocolate chunks into the dough with a spatula or spoon. Coat two cookie sheets with nonstick cooking spray or line them with parchment paper (we do both at the bakery to prevent sticking). With a 2- ounce ice cream scooper, scoop cookies onto each sheet. *Do not put too many per sheet as they will spread.
  6. You should have 18 to 20 cookies. Bake for 15 – 17 minutes, until golden and just set on top. Let cool.

Note: Do not flatten the scoops of cookie dough. Allow them to keep their round shape and they will flatten naturally in the oven.

You’re welcome.

Favourite Thing: The Swim Skirt!

I have been rocking the swim skirt since 2005, long before I had my two babies and my body started to look a little… different. My friends have always teased me about my modest swimwear but truth be told, I just don’t like wearing bikinis. I know I’m supposed to be proud of my body and everything it’s done and given me, and I am, but my love of the swim skirt isn’t about self body-shaming. I love the swim skirt because it’s comfortable and flattering on my body, much more than any other swim suit style.

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With my trip to Jamaica coming up, I want to buy a couple more swim pieces and these pieces are my favourites I’ve found:

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I love number 3. I’ll definitely be purchasing a rash guard for my trip because I worry about skin cancer. With built in SPF 50, I love the idea of having an extra level of protection from the sun.

Do you have a favourite swim suit style?

My Favourite Family Cookbooks

I’m lucky. I have a husband who genuinely enjoys cooking and uses cooking as a way to decompress. So, everyday after work, while I play with the kids, Paul cooks us an amazing dinner.

But, despite the fact that I rarely cook anymore, I love cookbooks. At any given time, I’ll have a stack of cookbooks next to my bed and I look through them at night before I go to bed. It’s cathartic.

My kids are picky eaters though, which means Paul and I don’t eat as adventurously as we’d like.

These are some of my favourite cookbooks for the family. Some are better for main dishes and others are better for snacks. The one thing they all have in common, however, is that the food is simple, which is key for our kids!

Do you have a go-to cookbook?

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