This weekend, along with being Diwali (happy Diwali to this who celebrated), many local Halloween parties happened.
Traditionally, hubby and I would have attended the Witches Gathering, but last year was the last of this fabulous event, after over 20 years of the organizers donating their time and making a community event that rocked.
Back to the present – another group, Vixens Victorious Ottawa, has been hosting an annual fundraiser for the past few years in October and this year they decided the theme would be Nightmare on Kent Street- perfect!!!
It was fun!
We went as a ghost bride and her stoic but distraught widower from the Victorian era ( stylized of course)
We won a prize in the couples category! Woot!
Congrats to the organizers and all the other winners – looking forward to next year!
Tiny Dinner Party!
A few months ago, I set up a sub group, Tiny Dinner Parties, on FB to an existing social activity organizing group, and have been test driving it and having some fun!
Note: I am torn about my use of FB as a social connecting space; I mainly use it for positive shares and as a means of connecting with multiple folk at once where conversations can be easily perused and organized.)
Create a space that will allow a larger group of loosely connected folk a chance to both host and attend smaller group events without pressure or guilt. No need to fee pressure to host or attend, but if it works out timing and energy wise, join in!
You want to host a party? You set up an event.
You only have room for 3 people to join you? Indicate it.
Your menu will be based on a specific food/style- ie. vegetarian or bbq or turkey dinner? Indicate it!
You then share the event with the full group and the first 3 ( or your chosen number) people to hit “going” have snared a spot at your table!
As a guest, you read through the description to make sure it’s a party you will enjoy before hitting “going”, offer your contributions if requested, and then venture out for a fun evening with friends- maybe folks you would not normally get a chance to meet!
Turkey Dinner Time:
I hosted my 3rd last night and tried a new configuration for table set up- full on eat in kitchen!
We had a lovely turkey dinner – sorry I did not get pics of the Kale salad, sweet potato casserole, Brussels sprouts with bacon, nor the mashed, stuffing and gravy – but it was all amazing.
…and a ” please, get out of the kitchen between courses so that I could clean up” – with the assistance of two lovely dish washers – MOST APPRECIATED HELP OF THE DAY!
So if you are feeling disconnected from the world, and want to gently reach out but are unsure of how, maybe you can set up your own Tiny Dinner Party group and try to get together with people around the table… or picnic blanket, or whatever works!
I’ve made piecaken/ Cherpumple in the past and this smaller version has one other difference- the Lemon Cake with Blueberry pie baked into it.
It is also Dairy free, with the substitution of lactose free margarine in the buttercream icing, coconut oil melted with the dairy/nut free dark chocolate drizzle, and reduced fat in the cakes, using apple sauce instead of oil.
The gallery shows the stages- the concept being to have 3 pre made and baked pies, mix 3 cakes up and put cake batter and a pie in each cake pan.
Bake for longer than recommended, about 20 minutes extra.
Chill each layer completely for at least 3 hours before assembling.
Apply a crumb coat to the cool cake.
Chill again and then frost fully and decorate as you wish.
The spiderweb was created by melting coconut oil and dark chocolate together and drizzling it onto the surface, letting it drip.
The gnarly cake bits were cut off from the overflow that happened when the cakes were baking. I thought there might be some spillage, so I put each tin on a cookie sheet, and the overflow looked like cooled lava! Great fluke that added to the finished look!
It was a beautiful evening and very well organized!
I liked that they changed the layout this year – last year, the cider tables were along the outer edge of the gazebo, and the patrons were corralled inside. It made queueing up a bit claustrophobic.
This year, the ladies at Savvy changed the layout and had the tables in the middle and the partons could spill out onto the grassy area if need be, or quickly grab their sample and shuffle off the to the numberous tables set up for us to enjoy a quiet < or raucous> drink and conversations.
The band provided gentle back ground music, and while some of us found the pretzels #StaleAsF@#K, I was happy to have them available to offset the imbibing! and the Donut Rain on my Parade food truck provided a simple concept for flavour coated mini donuts that were enjoyed by all!
This morning’s walk found me blessed with a gift of seeing a beautiful Raven up close and personal. Just sitting on the bench in the park where I walk almost every day and allowed me to snatch a moment or two on my camera. Please enjoy this brief moment of simple Raven wisdom…
She’s old and yet youth erupts from her very pores. She is gnarled in the truest sense. She has depth carved into her from years of living. She has tendrils of new life reaching out of her towards to sun. She is shelter for those scrambling into her arms, support for those who need fuel to fly, and a presence to be witnessed. She’s all people of age and wisdom and beauty. She’s respect and appreciation for the “Imperfect”. She’s a moment in a vastness. She’s a gift and a reminder to see beyond and within. She’s Ancient and Awesome
Somehow, over the past couple of months, this link came through my social media feed – and I clicked through and thought – yeah, that does sound perfect.
“Dark. Rich. And oh so bittersweet.”
So, today. For Christians it is “Good Friday”; for the Jewish community, it is Passover; and in the US today is National Garlic Day and tomorrow is Husband Appreciation Day… before I get lost down that rabbit hole, coming back to Canada and for me, today is the beginning of some cocoon time over this weekend, having even sent my furbaby off to visit her Aunt D.
And I suddenly wanted to make pie. And then I remembered the Schadenfreude Pie!
With it having been Aunt D.’s < Sprocket’s “Aunt”/ 2nd mom, not my Aunt> birthday recently, AND Happy Belated Kristine, <John Scalzi’s lovely wife>, I could make 1 for us, 1 for her and a mini so that I could make sure it was actually as good as the recipe sounded before sending a fresh pie off with her! The mini was amazing – will share our remaining pie with the hubby to show him appreciation… even here in Canada…
My modifications bring it across the border into Canada < northern US could use these variations too, I’m sure!> as well as being based on what I had in the cupboard.
The original ingredients < be sure to visit the World’s First Schadenfreude Pie post for the rest of the mixing and baking directions>:
What I changed:
1 cup dark corn syrup – 1 cup dark maple syrup – or any colour maple syrup
½ cup semi sweet chocolate chips. ¼ cup white chocolate chips and ¼ cup black cocoa
Along with the cinnamon, I added 1 teaspoon of powdered ginger
I skipped the booze as I did not have anything handy – but would try it in the future!
and I rolled out some previously made frozen pie crust – classic style- and split it into 2 smaller pie tins and 1 mini and I prebaked them for about 10 minutes before filling them.
Beyond that, I followed the original recipe and it is perfect.
Thank you, John Scalzi, for bringing more enjoyment to my world – he’s a fun writer too folks!
I would probably serve with whipped cream < Aunt D’s suggestion> and maybe have a shot of dark rum or the suggested booze with it, or just a nice dark coffee…
Oh, and if you are wondering what Schadenfreude is: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schadenfreude