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Monday, December 28, 2009

Life is good!!
Sitting in Collingwood, Ontario a Monday morning and I have time to write a post on my blog!!! The basic reason for this is that Beaches Bakeshop & Cafe' is closed until January 4th!!! I was soooo ready for a break! Mark just took the girls to their ski programs and I am going cross country w. 2 friends today.

Christmas was ok, I have a love - hate relationship to that Holiday. I always feel incapable of giving that perfect christmas gift. This year turned out ok but I could definitely have been a better gift giver. Have to work on that skill until next year.
One thing I am good at is giving myself good presents. I received an iphone a few weeks ago and I love it. It is soo great. All in one is the way to go. Ok, now time is up for lazy'ing around. Have to clean up and get ready to cross country ski!! It's going to be a great day!
Love to all!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

But get real, how can it possibly be almost 3 months since I wrote on my blog??? It is very close to Christmas and this fall has just swept by really fast. two new schools this year and so far so good. Both girls seem to enjoy where they are so no complaints in that department. Jojo is doing gymnastic 6h/ week and is enjoying that.
The cafe' is doing well. We are busy and that's what we want obviously. Don't know how to go forward and in which direction we should go but I am sure it will somehow work out. We had a big catering this past weekend. It went really well and it was for a friend in our neighbourhood so I was kind of nervous prior to the party. Everyone liked what we served and it went great so afterwards it felt awesome. Will be fun to see if more business will transpire from that. I think I want to get into catering again. I would not work the parties myself but I love the planning of menus and interacting with clients. What we really need is a website. Hello out there- Who wants to help us with a website??? We don't need a big elaborate website, just one with really good layout and all the right info about what we are.
Taste-Buddies cooking classes are still going strong. I have a class with 6 5-6 year old boys right now- note to self: Don't do that again!! It has been fun but CRAZY!! Tomorrow is the last class of this session and we are making checkerboard cookies and maybe jam caves.
I am still running and I did finish the Scotia Bank Marathon in September, 4.20 was my time and I felt great.
Speak about running, have to stop blogging and go to bed- up and out for a run at 6am tomorrow!!
Will definitely try to post more often! That's it for now!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Is it really mid September already??? Can't believe it! In just over a week I am running my 4th marathon. Also my first marathon in 15 years. I have been training, of course I should have trained more, harder and longer. But guess what I don't really care about my time. I just really want to earn the bragging rights you get for a while after you have finished a marathon- 42,6km.
Apart from running the past 6 weeks I spent 3 weeks in Europe. First a short intense visit to Malmo, Sweden. Weather was great actually so all the good karma I tried to spread about the weather worked well! We rented bikes and biked around like the rest of the average Malmo citizen. Had dinner i Vastra Hamnen, visited Annika i Ljunghusen, spent time at mormors kolonistuga, went to Osterlen and stayed at Karlaby Gard one night, had the most amazing dinner there by the way....We also spent the afternoon we left for PAris in Kopenhamn so I got a nice smorrebrod. I really enjoyed our visit and specially seeing all my friends. There are so many more friends I would have loved to catch up with but the time was NOT enough this time around. I'll be back!!!!
After Malmo we went to Paris and from there to Bordeaux- gorgeous place and so much to see. Not really a relaxing vacation but fun to see everything. We went to St. Emillion, Cap Ferre, Sarla, Arcichon, Dune du Pylat and so many more places. Before coming home we had 3 days in Paris with good friends in St-Nom-La- Breteche. Mark and I went shopping in Paris one day and I finally got the cutlery I have wanted forever.The typical french one with colourful handles. I should have a picture right here but I don't...
Since coming back to Toronto, the girls have started school-2 started new schools. Kids are now in 3 different schools. So far they really like their schools and everything is going great.

Beaches Bake Shop & Cafe' is doing great. We closed for 3 weeks and the first couple of days back were a bit scary. Now we are back to normal and have had 2 crazy lunches these past 2 days- I LOVE IT when it is busy. I also think I have an incredible "flyt" sometimes. Today a customer walked in and sat down with his 2 little girls for lunch. He starts talking about fresh produce in the car and vips I am out the looking at his heirloom tomatoes, macintosh apples that were picked this morning and zucchini galore.....I asked him how much?? He says - I like trading for favours! Ok, I said lunch is on us! So he and his 2 girls walked away happy and full and Beaches Bakeshop & Cafe' is making apple crumbles tomorrow like you have never seen before!!!
On October 3rd we will celebrate Kanelbullens Dag again. It was a huge success last year so we are planning for that again this year!

On a sad note I have 2 girlfriends who have been diagnosed with breast cancer recently and I don't like it one bit!!!! I am running Run for the Cure in a few weeks and suddenly that race will mean so much more.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Sitting on our deck this Sunday morning. It has been a non stop week. It started with dropping Sigrid and Pippi at camp up north. They were very excited to go to this amazing camp where they have everything you can imagine. Challenges in many different ways, lots of kids wanting to have fun and so many new friends to be made. The cafe' has been slow and that is draining in it self. I start questioning what we are doing and HOW WE CAN DO IT BETTER! I am starting to learn to understand the cycles of running a small business. When it is slow you have to take advantage of the time to organize yourself and the store. My head is always spinning with new ideas and things we can do. Rose and I have a good relationship in these situations. I bounce off my ideas with her and she executes in the front. A small instant idea is that the last couple of days we have offered samples of the salad to anyone that walks in the door. That way the salad was gone in 3 hours on Thursday. People love to get free things and we love to introduce as many people as possible.
I am also working on organizing all our recipes. Printing and laminating is the plan. I am converting all recipes we are using to use the same "language". There are so many languages you can use in recipe writing. I obviously use many swedish recipes that need translation but also when it comes to units and wording- it has to be consistent. Many years ago, when we first moved to Portland I signed up to take a cookbook writing course. I did it just for fun of course but today I find myself digging out old information from that course. Never underestimate the value of ANYTHING you do. There is nothing that's not worth learning- you never know when it could come in handy.
I am reading a "fun" book right now called "Ratio" by Michael Ruhlman. It's not really a cookbook but the science behind cooking and if you know the ratio of ingredients you can cook almost anything based on that. Custards, cookies, vinaigrettes, sauces, breads and lots more.

On to another subject in my life- I am running a marathon in just over a month!! My running partner is up north and it is hard for me to stay focused on the running when she is not around. I am going this afternoon when Mark returns from his business trip. Planning to do 20 km or maybe a bit longer. My other worry is that it will be hard to run when we go to Sweden and France in 10 days. I really have to force myself.......
Writing all this down makes me even more stressed! I have to go and print some of those recipes and get ORGANIZED!!! That is my mantra it seems like. Organized at home, at work, the kids, myself and my training, food at home, the kids clothes, my kitchen, my clothes- it goes on and on!!! I wonder if other people feel this way or if I am lacking some "enzyme" that should make the organizing of my life soooooooo much easier!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Ok, just a quick note on a Tuesday evening in the midsmack of summer. So far Toronto has not experienced the muggy, hot and sticky weather I kind of love hate. It has been very average and a bit cool even. The kids have been busy, Sigrid came back from camp, Pippi is playing tennis and Jojo went to a day camp last week and dances this week. I am in the middle of Cooking Camp and it is going really well. I think I am ready to move on to older kids. This week I don't have any small children and it is a lot of fun! What about the pictures?? Jojo is helping out at the cafe' one day, could not resist taking a picture. The other ones are from our backyard with granpa' and nana. The one on the dock is from Lake Ontario, just down the street from our house. French friends visiting and enjoying the summer!
Have to sleep now. The plan is to run 13 km tomorrow morning so I need my beauty sleep!!! Bye for now!

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Ooops, now it is suddenly July! Oh, well, June was jampacked with graduations, work and I don't really know what else. It went fast though.
We are going to Sweden in August. Just for 8 days but I am planning to fill those days with the essentials and I think I will feel satisfied when leaving. After Sweden we are heading to Bordeux so how bad can it get?
Sigrid has left for 2 weeks of camp and Pippi and Jojo are doing daycamps while I am working. So far everything goes smooth. Not to busy at the Cafe' but we are full for our camps starting next week. Kids will come at 12.15 and start with eating a light lunch. We then proceed with a regular cooking class and they will be picked up at 2.15pm. It might be weird if we have a really busy lunch and have all the kids as well but I think it will all work out.
Today is Canada Day and we are going to a friends house for a BBQ. I just made a sockerkaka with fresh fruit and Ice cream and a Clafouti. Clafouti is among the best thing I know. It looks and smells absolutely awesome!!!
I just bought a great cookbook called "Family Meals, creating Traditions in The Kitchen". Can't remember the authors name right now but she is a women, chef and mom. Oh, I looked it up, her name is Maria helm Sinsley. Check this book out if you have kids in your life and like to pass some cooking abilities on to them. It is actually William Sonoma that published the book. They usually know what they are doing.
The pictures I have added are from NYC- funny with all the different eggs at Union Square Farmers Market, instead of an ice cream truck I saw this cup cake truck, and the last picture is from outside BEACHES BAKE SHOP & CAFE'. Our new storefront that I promised to show off a long time ago!
Off to get ready for Canada Day BBQ!

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

June already!!!
Can't believe it. At least it is warm enough tonight to sit outside on our deck at 8pm. This week started with the worst summer weather you can imagine. The worst thing with that weather was that it was supernice weather in Sweden. When it's nice weather in Sweden and bad where I am, I get very depressed. Don't really know why but maybe it is because there is not many places I really want to be more than a SUNNY Stockholm or Malmo. We are going for a short visit in august so if you are planning a Sweden trip- don't go 12-20 of August- the weather will for sure be crap! It always is when I am in Sweden. Please, the only thing I really want is nice, warm weather for 8, PLEASE 8 DAYS!!! That can't be too much to ask for. Enough about my swedish weather hang ups.
I am doing a Marathon in September! Yes, that is right, I am running a marathon on September 27. Scotia Bank Waterfront Marathon. It will go through The Beaches where we live. I am counting on all my friends to come out to cheer for Leigh-Anne, my running partner and I. Tomorrow I will take pictures of the new store front at the cafe'. Beaches Bake Shop & Cafe' looks great these days- I am sooo happy with how the paint job and sign came out.
Now it is time to shut down. I am tired and ready for bed!
Bye Bye

Sunday, May 24, 2009

May 24 was mormor's birthday. She would have been 98 today if she was still alive. Incredible! I wish she was still with us! Sometimes I think I should call her but the I remember that I can't.
In 3 days my mom is turning 70. That is another totally unreal thing. I feel like she should be 58 for some reason. That is 12 years ago, when I was 33- yes, time could have stopped there when it comes to aging. THen again. Sigrid would have been 2 for ever and Pippi just a few months and Jojo would not be born...
Have to include a picture of my very north american daughter. She is graduating from 8th grade and is entering High School in the fall. I am very proud of her. She is going in to the IB programme and is nervous but also super excited!
Have to get some sleep- tomorrow is the bug track meet- Jojo is doing relay and Pippi is stand in for Kate, who fractured her foot, in triple jump! Fingers crossed, please!!

Will return shortly to show pic's from our new store front at Beaches Bake Shop & Cafe!!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Mothers Day, I am always kind off lukewarm in regards to how I feel about this day. It is definitely a Hallmark holiday but it's obviously nice to get some extra attention. Anyway, I am going to get myself a nice pair of expensive denim jeans. I wonder if expensive jeans have always been the way to go or if the need comes with age?
Did a big catering yesterday and feel a bit wiped today. It was really fun and went great.
We have booked tickets to Europe this summer. Landing in Paris and on a plane to CPH right away. In Sweden for 8 days and then back to Paris for villa vacation with Patti and Francois. Hopefully we will have time for a mini trip to Praque and Vienna as well.
OK, short post today- going for a run and then tackle the day!!!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Hello! Saturday around 11pm and just finished watching a movie with Mark.
Sigrid came home on Monday and it feels REALLY good to have her home. I don't think I realized how much I really missed her until tonight when she is at a friends house for a sleep over. I didn't want her to go.
It has been a good week.. Busy at Beaches Bake Shop and Cafe, that is our new name by the way. We added the Cafe and took away Anna and Rose.
I have a few caterings coming up- always stressful before everything is in place. Rentals, staff, menu etc. I enjoy doing them though. On May 1st I am going to a Slow Food Toronto dinner. I am very excited. Carlos Petrini, who started Slow Food in Italy is coming as well.
If anyone reads this and sometimes checks out Twitter, check out Beaches Bake Shop! I try to post the menu every day and I like the whole twitter thing. It is less invasive in a way than facebook.

Ok, short post today, have to work a bit before crawling into bed. Keeping my fingers crossed for a great sunny day tomorrow and a long exhausting and energizing run!
Let me know you dropped by!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Is it just me who is a uninspired food enthusiast right now?? I was wondering all day why I just could not get excited about what to cook at the cafe. Then I realized that I am boooored with the ingredients produce, I guess, available this time of the year. I am tired of the winter root veggies I have worked with and enjoyed for months now. I am ready for asparagus and all the spring stuff!!!! Have to get to St. Lawrence Market asap!! The cafe was super quiet today and that always bugs me. I am not very patient with slow-period!!! I want busy and crazy as much as possible. Luckily I had a Taste- Buddies cooking class this afternoon and they always spice up my day. We made chicken noodle soup and corn bread.

From one thing to the other- Sigrid is coming home on Monday, can't believe she has been gone for 2 months. She has had a great time and family dynamics at home changed a bit. Pippi got to be the oldest sister and there was just more time to be shared between the 2 sisters instead of 3.

The weather is finally supposed to get warmer- can't wait! Apparently it will warm up to 16*C by Saturday- I really hope that happens! That's it for tonight! Take care and leave me a message!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Oooops, way too long since I updated again. It seems like that is a very common first sentence here on my blog. We went to Mt. Tremblant and had a great time. Weather, Company, Chalet and Food all cooperated! I was the lucky receiver of a new ski outfit for my birthday! It was well needed since my kids have complained for years about my UGLY snow pants. I might put them in a shadow box just for fun. Maybe in our future chalet they could be some kind of centre piece over the fire place.....
I have opened a twitter account which I am planning to update with Beaches BAkes Shops daily menu and future events. An event I am looking forward to is "Speed Babysitter" We are inviting potential babysitters in the area to come and at the same time we have invited parents of kids that needs to be babysat. Smart, eh'! A friend of mine suggested it and I ran with it. We will see how it will work out. The format is still a bit up in the air.

Sigrid is doing great in France. She does not like school at all but everything else seems ok. She and Laura went to PAris 2 weeks ago for the weekend- on the TGV all alone! They of course had a blast. Will post pictures when blogger allows me.
Right now we are experiencing some difficulties in connecting apparently.
I'll be right back!

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Just super quickly a short post before I have to do other things.
I have the best MAMMA and BISSA- look what I got for my birthday!!!! The package came today even though my birthday is not for another week but I kind of knew what was inside so I had to open it and there it was my all time favorite pattern on a table cloth!!!! It fits the kitchen table perfectly and I JUST LOOOOOVE IT!! TACK SA JATTEMYCKET !!!!!!! Jag blev jatteglad!!!
Stora kramar

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

next day already.....
The cooking demonstration went really well. I didn't have a long time to plan it because quite frankly I had forgotten committing to do it until one of my friends that was coming asked what time the class was going to start the next day....It was a swedish cooking class and I decided to show and teach the guests about the following:

3 Crispbread toppnings
Egg salad with Kalles Kaviar
Skagen mix- cold water shrimps with dill and mayo
Old Cheddar with Cloudberry

Ovenbaked Salmonfile under a dill and dijon crust served with horseradish whip

Biff a la Lindström- mini hamburgers filled with beets, pickles and capers
Roasted ugly root vegetables- turnip, rutabaga, parsnip, carrots and potato

For dessert I made SEMLA buns. Everyone assembled their own and the whipped cream go a Lingonberry touch.

Every one enjoyed it a lot and I think I would like to do more teaching. It is fun!!!
Have to go- sleep is important!!

Monday, March 02, 2009

Just a quick post today because it is over a months since last time -again!!
Sigrid has left, she is in France for her 2 month student exchange and is having a great time- I hope!!! She did loose her camera on the slopes on the weekend but we have "taken care of that".
I can't remember the expression that goes with the picture of Jojo and her friend in Sigrid's room. Something about when away the.....I need help!!
The cafe is going, we have been busy every other day it seems like lately. It is freezing cold outside and people do not want to go outside, I guess. On Saturday I am cooking up Swedish Pea soup and Swedish Pancakes. Come on by!!! I went to IKEA yesterday and bought another s/s kitchen counter. It works really well. Everybody said, wow we look like a "real Kitchen" now.
Ok, have to go. I have to plan for a Swedish Cooking Demonstration I am doing tomorrow night. Don't know how many people yet.
I'll be back soon!

Sunday, February 08, 2009

So, here I am again. A Sunday morning in deepest February and believe it or not the snow is melting, sun is shining and it is super nice outside! I am definitely going for a long run a bit later this morning. I run while listening to my favourite podcasts. MENY from Swedish Radio, THE SPLENDID TABLE from American Public Media and THIS AMERICAN LIFE from NPR. The best runs start with new episodes of all these podcasts on my IPod.
Two of the pictures I have added today are of SEMLA buns. I bake and sell them at the cafe now until easter. They are a traditional Swedish bun that YOU HAVE TO HAVE at this time of the year. The word comes from Latin Simila which means wheat flour and the bun is made with cardamom and then you cut the "hat" off, hollow the bun out, fill the hole with almond paste cover that with a big dollop of whipped cream and finally the hat goes back on sprinkled with icing sugar! It is soooo yummy!
The other picture is a great Indian Carrot Soup I made last week. Super good and so beautiful to look at. That yellow is my favourite colour!
If you find yourself in Toronto from now until easter, please come by for a SEMLA or two!
Bye for now!

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Happy Anniversary to me!!!!
Today marks the first year of being a self employed cafe owner. This year has gone unbelievably fast. I just wrote a list of 25 random things about myself and one thing that I wrote was "I love what I do but I question it everyday if it is the right thing to do right now". I mean the kids are still kind of young. Sometimes I do miss out on things I wouldn't have to miss if I didn't own a cafe. I think I would still be working though. I tell myself that at least I am 2 minutes from their school and if something happens I can be there in, that's right, 2 minutes. My two younger girls comes up to the cafe for lunch most days, sometimes that is a bit stressfull when we are busy but it is great to connect a little in the middle of the day.

Yesterday was a funny day at Beaches Bake Shop. It started with me not "feeling up for it at all". Would have preferred to stay in bed and take care of my voice, cough and throat. Since that was not an option I went to St. Lawrence Market. Jojo came with me, she is the biggest trouper there is! We picked up the 25dz bagels and went back to the cafe. I decided to make SEMLOR. I made some earlier in the week and the weekend before so I was hoping people would remember. To recap the day in a semla kind of way we sold about 25!! That is a great number. I have orders for more and I love it. I am convinced we should market ourself as a Swedish Cafe. There was 2 groups of swedes that came in and they were just as excited as I was back in the mid 90's when I found something authentic. They were blown away how "real" the choklad biskvier and of course the Semlor tasted. It totally made my day! Something not so funny about yesterday was when I went downstairs to the womens washroom and noticed the switch plate for the light switch missing. SOMEONE STOLE IT!!!! Granted it was cute, Andy Warhol's Cambell Soup look alike. The screws were screwed back in after removing the plate-INSANE!!!

Now the question is YOGA or not. I think YOGA. I feel almost healed from my little stint of being sick- loosing my voice etc. so I really should get going!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Hello again,
twice in the same day...
I found this list on NYT times most e- mailed stories. I think lists like this is great for people to remember what to eat. Short and easy to remember. You read through it and when you're at the store you remember the food items, maybe not why they are good, but that doesn't matter- just buy it!
Read on!

(This post was originally published on June 30, 2008, and recently appeared on The New York Times’s list of most-viewed stories for 2008.)

Nutritionist and author Jonny Bowden has created several lists of healthful foods people should be eating but aren’t. But some of his favorites, like purslane, guava and goji berries, aren’t always available at regular grocery stores. I asked Dr. Bowden, author of “The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth,” to update his list with some favorite foods that are easy to find but don’t always find their way into our shopping carts. Here’s his advice.

Beets: Think of beets as red spinach, Dr. Bowden said, because they are a rich source of folate as well as natural red pigments that may be cancer fighters.
How to eat: Fresh, raw and grated to make a salad. Heating decreases the antioxidant power.
Cabbage: Loaded with nutrients like sulforaphane, a chemical said to boost cancer-fighting enzymes.
How to eat: Asian-style slaw or as a crunchy topping on burgers and sandwiches.
Swiss chard: A leafy green vegetable packed with carotenoids that protect aging eyes.
How to eat it: Chop and saute in olive oil.
Cinnamon: May help control blood sugar and cholesterol.
How to eat it: Sprinkle on coffee or oatmeal.
Pomegranate juice: Appears to lower blood pressure and loaded with antioxidants.
How to eat: Just drink it.
Dried plums: Okay, so they are really prunes, but they are packed with antioxidants.
How to eat: Wrapped in prosciutto and baked.
Pumpkin seeds: The most nutritious part of the pumpkin and packed with magnesium; high levels of the mineral are associated with lower risk for early death.
How to eat: Roasted as a snack, or sprinkled on salad.
Sardines: Dr. Bowden calls them “health food in a can.” They are high in omega-3’s, contain virtually no mercury and are loaded with calcium. They also contain iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, copper and manganese as well as a full complement of B vitamins.
How to eat: Choose sardines packed in olive or sardine oil. Eat plain, mixed with salad, on toast, or mashed with dijon mustard and onions as a spread.
Turmeric: The “superstar of spices,” it may have anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties.
How to eat: Mix with scrambled eggs or in any vegetable dish.
Frozen blueberries: Even though freezing can degrade some of the nutrients in fruits and vegetables, frozen blueberries are available year-round and don’t spoil; associated with better memory in animal studies.
How to eat: Blended with yogurt or chocolate soy milk and sprinkled with crushed almonds.
Canned pumpkin: A low-calorie vegetable that is high in fiber and immune-stimulating vitamin A; fills you up on very few calories.
How to eat: Mix with a little butter, cinnamon and nutmeg.
Hourly Forecast


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These temperatures are real!!! And we are not talking Nunavut or the Polar Circle or even Greenland- We are talking outside my house in Toronto. It is going to be freezing!!! I wonder if people will venture out for some soup and salad today and tomorrow? Minestrone Soup and Quinoa with Corn, Cilantro and Feta is on the menu together with some other yummy stuff of course. Have to run to the passporrt office this morning to get a new passport for Sigrid who is leaving for France in 4 weeks and yesterday we realized that oooops, her passport expires on April 6 - 2 weeks before she is scheduled to come home....Good thing I notized it yesterday and not in 3 weeks!! Have to run!!
Until next time- stay warm!