Category Archives: Friends

spreading the love and embarrassment for those with whom I socialize

Today is special – mini vanilla coconut cream scones

It’s Coralie’s birthday.  She’s a best friend.

For sure.

I want to tell you about the 52Xinfinity different reasons why she is one of THE MOST awesome individuals ever to be synthesized from the genetic material of two other individuals ever, but I’m kinda sorta studying right now. I am. I will be.  I am.

I’ll be succinct. (which is one of my best words by the way)

If you ever get the chance to be friends with Coralie Ullyett, take it. Run with it.  Don’t look back.

It’s like you invested in apple in the 80’s.  And you’re freakin rich now.

That’s how I feel.

Best. Return. On. Investment. Ever. (see, I’m studying)

She makes friendships.  I don’t mean like she makes friends, but like she makes the friendship.  You must know what I mean, you must have come across one of these friends before.

I hope you kept them.

They’re the kind of friend who always makes you feel all loved n junk. Like somehow, even though you know their life is busy because they’re probably off saving the world (or environment), they always take time to think about you. And they find a way let you know.  Sometimes it’s a text, an email, a phone call, or even a freaking postcard. Postcards are the bee’s knees.

Magic, these friends.

They’re the ones who teach their friends how to be friends.

I’m both jealous of their friendbilities, and crippling-ly grateful that I wound up on the receiving end. Yes, gratefulness can be crippling. And crippling can be manipulated into the word “crippling-ly”. You saw it.

I’m working on spreading more of this friend magic myself.

Coralie, be prepared. There will be text messages. There will be tweets. There will likely be some random facebook links on your wall.

And there will be birthday scones.

She loves Coconut.

I love (mostly) everything, SO, coconut it is.

Continue reading



Filed under Breakfast, Food, Friends

How to show them you care

So shortly before I left my homeland, I faced an obstacle.

How do you say “Happy Birthday”, “Goodbye”, “I know you so well it’s retarded”, “Please don’t forget how super I am”, “I wanna try to make you fat one last time”, and “I love you” all in a portable confection?

I’m pretty sure everyone comes across this dilemma a few times in their twenties. Yeah?

You know, when there’s someone kinda special who you might not see for kinda a long time.

You know, someone who’s always doing extra nice things for you.  Such nice things that you kinda want to flip out at them for being so dang nice cause it kinda totally makes you feel bad for not being equally as awesome and nice… which leads you to start constantly plotting evil schemes in which you can throw painful amounts of niceness back at them.

Yeah that someone.

BUT, you can’t just be all cutesy and overly mushy-girly-lovey-dovey-nice, because … ew. That ruins the mystique right. I’m not a softie.

You all know what I mean.

Plus.. knowing that someone… if you did something toooooo nice… their head would for sure expand to the size of your mothers’ new walk-in closet that you weren’t allowed to have. Ugh.

But at the same time, you totally know that that someone special deserves something that is undeniably fantasmigoracle.

EVEN if it means working through lunch and ducking out of a meeting early (you know how we all hate missing budget meetings).

Don’t worry, I figured it out for you.

I knew you were wondering.

I’ll tell you about it.

Bake them these.

Do other things for them too mind you, like hand-draw them a card with animated food on it, but definitely, definitely bake them these.

Especially if they’re a boy.

These may be the most magical and moist cupcakes to enter my life, ever.  They’ve gotten rave reviews at How Sweet It Is.  If I trust anything to feed to boys, It’s the stuff that gal makes.

There’s just something about chocolate and peanut butter.

They go together like…. I don’t know… two… really, really, ridiculously good-looking people or something.

Hot Fudge Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Buttercream

from How Sweet It Is 


  • 1 1/8 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup (fair trade if you’re nice) cocoa powder
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 (organic free-range) egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup organic milk
  • 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup melted organic butter
  • 2 Tbs sour cream
  • 1/4 cup homemade hot fudge sauce

Hot Fudge Sauce:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup (fair trade) cocoa powder
  • 2 Tbs flour
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 Tbs butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Make the hot fudge sauce first s’il vous plait. Combine sugar, cocoa, salt, and flour in a bowl over a double boiler. Bring water to a boil. Gradually add hot water to sugar mixture. Stir constantly until mixture thickens to your desired thickness. Then remove from heat and stir in the butter and vanilla. (use remaining from recipe to drizzle over cupcakes, then store the rest in the fridge for your family to eat after you’ve left *tear*)

For the cupcakes:  Preheat oven to 350. In a medium bowl whisk egg and sugar until smooth, then add milk, cream, butter, vanilla, and sour cream.  Sift together the dry ingredients and add to wet.  Mix until smooth.  Swirl in the hot fudge.  I tried to make pretty swirls. Not that it matters.  Line a muffin tin with liners.. trust me.. I didn’t.. but these baby’s are moist and I don’t want to put you through my stress.  Add 1/4 batter to each tin and bake for 15-18 ish minutes, and please let cool before you frost these. Nobody likes their frosting to escape down the side of their cupcake.

Peanut Butter Buttercream:

  • 1/2 cup softened butter
  • 2/3 cup very smooth natural peanut butter
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 Tbs (or more) milk
  • pinch of salt

Cream butter and peanut butter together with your electric mixer.  Slowly add powdered sugar bit by bit.  If you are indeed using all natural peanut butter, It’ll get super thick, do not fear, there is hope for your buttercream.  Add vanilla and then milk a tsp at a time until you reach your perfect piping consistency.  I probably added 5 or more Tbs of milk.. but I didn’t have very liquidy pb.


I think your somebody will like these.

Mine did.

This much.

If you want them to keep on remembering you while they drive away… put some in individual paper cups 🙂 they fit nicely in cupholders.

Happy Belated Birthday Post Sam, and keep brushing your teeth, those cupcakes aren’t sugar free.

Elephant Shoes








Filed under Dessert, Food, Friends

Goodbye summer, we were so good together.

I told you I would have a hard time staying on top of my blogging game during the summer.

You may not have realized that I meant, “Hey guess what, we’re not talking for like… a month.”

Yeah… neither did I… my condolences. I knew it might happen, but I’d hoped I would make a few appearances.

Nope. There was much self-scolding. Personal hand-slapping. AND Feeling sorry for-one’s-elf-ing.

I finally accepted that my blog-lationship would have to rekindle in the fall.  For real.  Like, I’m back.  I have time for you now.  I promise I won’t do this to you again. (Well maybe at Christmas, but we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it…)

Soon I’ll have classes to use you as procrastination for, homesickness to use you as a cure for, and muffin-baking to use you as an excuse for.

In spite of my absence on the interwebs, my summer wrap-up was still totally blog worthy.  I still kept my camera handy.  I still made great memories.  AND I still made great food.

Let’s share:


I kept those friends that you saw me with earlier in the summer. Yeah that’s right.  They weren’t rentals.


I sucked up to my awesome new neighbours like freaking mad.  They have man-power that I might need one day (likely to haul un-godly quantities of oats into my pantry at some point), and I had Cherry-Chia Bars.  These were freaking fantastic. So many possible superlatives for these freaking bars.  Obviously I didn’t tell my neighbours that they were vegan until after they ate them. HA.  Best deceptive plot ever.  I hope to share this recipe with you sometime over the fall because you deserve it.


I went on a VACATION… err.. I mean another running competition.  It was all business.  Just racing.  You can tell.  It was in Kamloops.  It was 33°C.  Ohbaby


Yep.  I had two races.  They rocked.  I had to have two water bottles dumped over my head and a personal water-sptritzy-gun-man at the finish.  I would have otherwise disintegrated.  Or vomited.  But the latter was not an option.  Food is sacred.

So yea, I had two races… but I was there for a week. Most of my time was spent:


Perusing farmers markets.


Purchasing multiple flavours of artisanal honey.  I miss you, pink lemonade honey straw.


Savouring Okanagan peaches.  In my room.  Sharing with no one.


Being team-spirited.

Oh yes, very spirited.

Then needing an ice bath because all that spirit can seriously wear out the quads.

Witnessing touching mushy coupley moments… creepily.  And maybe shedding a tear… creepily.

Oooh and taking photos of not-my-children… creepily.

Shoveling this sundried tomato eggs benedict (yes it’s as life-changing as it sounds) from hello toast into my face.

I even partook in some alternative exercise to burn off the hollandaise.

Then I came home again.  The final stretch.  Disheartening.  I ate my feelings.

With these.

And then with this.

And then I needed to share my feelings… while still eating them.. so I made these.  And then ate waaaay to many cherries.  And had to take a break.  Note to self:  know that every time you say “This time it’s going to be different, this time I’ll be able to eat the whole bag without any negative repercussions.”  It’s not going to be different.  Don’t do it smart-ass.

Then I went on a hike with someone that I like to make me feel better.


And even more hikes with people that I like!  Yes!  You are correct!  M was home!! (he and my entire family had abandoned me for a Nova Scotia vacation for a month, no bitterness though.. obviously..)

We did Whitehorse-y wilderness-y things while we still could.

Those are cranberries.


Yes, I tell you I love him because he’s my brother and is amazing and intelligent and loving.  BUT… You know he’s just blog bait.  Look at that kid.

no, not really that photo..

but that family 🙂 Dang we’re good lookin’.

And well fed.

My family sent me off with a local dinner. 40 Metre diet style.  Yes, you heard me.  Even that chicken was axed in my uncle’s back yard. AWESOME.  RIP Terry.

Well done acquiring a footrest during dinner M. No, of course Jazz doesn’t mind.

(btw Uncle Steve, Best Dinner Ever.)

Whitehorse, I love you, try not to cry while I’m gone.  It’ll be Christmas before you know it.

Oh P.S. I had to do some of my own send-offs before I left. *tear*

At least they involved cupcakes. To be continued…



Filed under Family, Friends, Mundane Shenanigans

Happy Birthday Jessika Rae Malchow

Meet Jessika.

Yes, that was her.

She’s pretty cute.

Yes, her name is spelled with a “k”.

Why is her name spelled with a “k”?

Because she’s not like all of those other Jessica‘s.

Why not?

Because she’s got some of my blood in her, and that makes her weird by association.  Sorry Jess.

OH, I should mention that she’s my cousin. Because if I didn’t, you guys might get totally creeped out by that blood thing.  Or you might get totally creeped out regardless.. so I’ll just keep on truckin.

ANYWAYS, no that’s not really why.  She’s special because she’s both super and cool. supercool. And she laughs at my jokes. That’s a really important one. It makes me love her even more when she laughs at my jokes.

But I loved her before she laughed at my jokes.

How could you not love this face eh?

You see, I loved her back when we were tweens, chasing gecko’s side by side on a family camping trip to the Grand Canyon.  Only to discover that catching a gecko by the tail is not only inefficient, it’s something that will haunt you with bodypart-detatching guilt until you’ve seen with your own eyes that tails grow back.

I even loved her back when we were ten, inventing songs about beans, rice, and mice on a balcony in San Jose del Cabo.  Those melodies made an imprint on my heart.

You know I think I may have even loved her when we were in first grade. Maybe. Because … even though she was cooler than me, and taller than me (c’mon, we all know height meant alot back then), she never made me be Sporty Spice. Ever.  That was our other cousin. (Ha, love you Madi)

And I have a feeling that I might keep on lovin her, not because I have to, but because no matter how long it’s been since we’ve last talked, we can talk like it’s only been a weekend.  And no matter how different and/or hippy grandmother-like I become, she still treats me like I’m a completely normal, and even slightly cool, human being.  And I have a feeling that no matter how weird and crazy I become, she’ll always have my back.  Because she’s pretty darn supportive like that.

If you've got a splinter, she'll take care of that too.

And I know that, if I ever really need a dance battle to ease my woes, you’ll have me covered there too Jess.

Now, I would say to all of my readers that I hope that you are all lucky enough to have a cousin like Jess, because family clings like static-tastic underpants, and if you’re stuck with something for that long, then I hope it’s just like Jess…..

But I won’t say that… because there’s only one Jessika Rae Malchow and I know she’s not your cousin. My apologies.

Oops, except if you happen to be one of our other cousins, then lucky.  (And I love you too, no matter what they say about you.)

So Jess, Happy birthday, we’re gettin’ old.

And now I’m taller.

But I’m still not going to make you be Sporty Spice.

That’s love folks,



Filed under Friends

I’ve got 99 problems but a snitch ain’t one..

Yeah, it’s Potter season.

How did you celebrate?

Of course you celebrated like any self-respecting 20-something would celebrate.

You lined up for the premiere 5 hours ahead of time.


In the rain.

Knowing that the theater you will be watching it in has the acoustics of a cardboard box and a screen comparable in quality to your 7 year old portable DVD player that you still have for some reason.

With your (awesome) nearly retired running coach…

one of your (most patient) best friends…

that random friend from highschool that you would see infront of you in the line (dressed as Harry himself)…

the views expressed on this shirt do not represent the opinions of the author. One of the greatest men ever to live was a Slytherin.

and your second cousin Michelle, because isn’t that where everybody runs into family accidentally?..

Oh, so that’s just me then.

I can’t help it… it’s the only way I can relate to my audience… by pretending that you do everything that I do. Even though you for sure don’t.

Except for Hilary.  Hilary you for sure do.

In fact, let’s take a quick trip down memory lane…  to the distant past.  Yes, I’m speaking about the first film installment of the Deathly Hallows less than a year ago.

I was Ron.

My really cool roommates (including Hilary) were all totally on the bandwagon.

I even had a Hermione.  I miss you Hermione.  Come back to my country.

I just ate a spoonful of hazelnut butter to ease the grief.

And what did this Gryffindor eat on premier night?

Licorice wands. Derr.

The only way you can still make friends while dressed in a completely legitimate looking Gryffindor sweater and sitting on the side of the street?  Licorice wands.

Nerdy tastes so good.

My least culinary, and least nutritious recipe to date.  Dip twizzlers in melted chocolate, sprinkle with sprinkles.

Some sprinkles were dinosaur shaped.

No it’s not very wizardy.  I live with M.  What other kinds of sprinkles did you think I would find?

I didn’t have time to make pumpkin pasties from scratch like I did last time.  Give me a break,  I had been busy creepily driving by the theatre half-hourly since I got off work.

At four.

Obviously I had to strike a perfect balance between being ahead enough in the line to have prime seats, and also being behind enough to not obviously be that girl who has no friends that are neurotic enough to line up with her 8 hours ahead of time.

When we were finally let in out of the rain (and out from under “my” petite umbrella lined with dump trucks and cement mixers.. so I misplaced my own umbrella and stole M’s.. so what) we were sorted into our houses!!

ie: a letter was written on each of our hands so that we could get back in when we peed.

They made a blasphemous mistake.


They were all, “but you’re wearing yellow.”


The movie was amazing.  The theatre was utter crap.

I’m seeing it next week in 3D… 5 times… with more licorice wands.

Make love, not horcruxes.

Ginny out.

Oh p.s. only in whitehorse does some rando get arrested beside the theatre in front of 150 Yukon Potterheads.

You should know by now buddy, unforgiveable curses keep the RCMP hot on your tail.


Filed under Friends, Mundane Shenanigans

Kluane to chilkat international bike relay: Rigid Dorks

To save both of us, I’m going to keep this light on the commentary and heavy on the photography.

Last weekend, a team of four nincompoops participated in an international bike relay that spans this distance between Haines Jct, Yukon and Haines, Alaska.  The nincompoop who writes this blog decided it would be a good idea to cycle only once in advance. She doesn’t like roads.

For these nincompoops, the bike relay involved the following:

– Waiting for Michael to light a fire under his arse and meet us.  Olga (Zig’s ride) can only go so fast.

– Finding good use for a bag of munchies the size of a small ten year old, or large seven year old.

– Discovering someone’s mother, who had attempted to conceal herself in the bushes – Pitifully.

– Drooling over, and contemplating the consequences of joyriding pretty green bicycles.

– Lee. Reclining comfortably.

– Somebody overfilling their sleeping pad and wondering afterward if it’s actually supposed to have the buoyancy to raise a Subaru.

– The leader of the first pack looking back. Major no-no buddy.

– Logan being a Lard… on … and off the bike.

– Logan working hard occasionally.. trying to make up for his deflated tires.

– A runner on a bike, who is also a blogger, and who is far too determined to lift her head.

– A bagpipe player. One that played from his support vehicle throughout the entire race. Emphasis on entire race. Both inspirational and painful to watch.

– Ziggy’s sore bum and my foot.  I kicked it to make it feel better.  Don’t question my methods.

– Our trusty man pack.

– A rider named Michael, being far too happy. Man up and grind Mike.

– A rider named Ziggy with something to prove.

– A rider named Ziggy with something to throw savagely at her support vehicle.  Thanks for your leftover shot bloks zig.

– A really very good teammate, who is really very excellent at water bottle hand-offs.

– A self-righteous neighbour of mine. Thinks he’s all that because he beat us.  Whatever. I’m your neighbour too.  Guess who’s installing flood lights.

– A sign.  Don’t make me explain the funny.

– Freaking Daisies.

– Bill Parry’s Patchwork Pink Pants

– Four tired nincompoops.  One of whom is using all of her remaining energy just to remain vertical.

– Brittany’s family! Yes even they were involved! I bet you’re happy to see M. I sure am.

– Nansen! Yes, he was involved too!  Everybody is always happy to see Nansen.

– A good helper. One who was not involved in the not illegal peddling of things that are not hooch.

– A man and his drink of choice.  This man is manly.  You will meet none manlier.

– FREE MEALS. That were totally paid for in advance..

– A field full of tents; the field saw more intoxication than it deserved to.

– Two super fresh individuals the next morning.  One with unbeatable hair. Lee.

– Two more super fresh individuals. One with a spoon in his mouth.

– One even fresher individual… with a vibrant career in grass blade whistling ahead of him.

– Multiple morning mother faces.

– Multiple morning Brittany faces.  You know I do this for you people. Please know how fortunate you are.

– A brand new bike, because real riders build their bikes out of hammers. You pansy.

– A pan of delicious vegan berry snack cake.  One that you should never cover with tinfoil before it’s cooled and take it on a roadtrip.  Because sealing moist baked good makes them moister. Like very moist. moist. moist. moist.  Yes, it’s a terrible word.  I just like to press your buttons.

The cake was still extra tasty. Obviously it was.  It was created by Mama Pea.   I implore you not to underbake it.

But please. Bake it.  Then bring it with you on a bike race.  You’ll make cyclist friends.

Friend Maker Berry Cake

adapted from Peas and Thank You

  • 1/2 c. soy milk
  • 3/4 c. unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/4 c. hazelnut-almond butter (or whatevs)
  • 1/2 c. brown sugar
  • 1/2 t. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 t. almond extract
  • 1 c. whole wheat flour
  • 1 c. spelt flour
  • 1 t. baking powder
  • 1/2 t. baking soda
  • 1 t. cinnamon
  • 1/2 t. salt
  • 3/4 cup cut strawberries
  • 3/4 frozen blueberries
Preheat the oven to 350.  In a medium bowl combine the liquid ingredients (up to and including extracts).  In a large bowl combine the dry ingredients (ie: everything else besides the berries).  Fold in the berries and pour batter into a greased 8X8 pyrex or other pan.  Bake for half an hour, give or take, make sure to check with a toothpick.  If it doesn’t come out clean… don’t you dare stop cooking that cake.  Even if you have to hurry and leave to drive to haines junction, cake takes priority. Enjoy for dinner, then again crumbled over your oatmeal in the morning, then as a post race meal between lunch and dinner. Please.


Filed under Dessert, Food, Friends, Traipsing Outdoors

Whitehorse Sprint Triathlon

My mom doesn’t always give herself enough credit.

She works hard.

She mothers hard.

And sometimes she trains hard.

She thinks she doesn’t quite train hard enough, because her work encroaches on her ability to train.   I may have in the past fueled this feeling by saying irresponsible things like:

“Mom, you can do anything.  I know you have a five year old and you take your work home because you’re intense, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still be fit like you used to be. Come running with meeee.”

I can see how those kinds of things could wear down someone’s composure.  Oops.  I just wanted a running buddy :).

Given her routinely packed schedule, she seemed concerned about being underprepared for her first training triathlon of the year.

Way to pull the wool over my eyes mom.

You looked smokin.

And you got second.

You are kind of a big liar face.

You said it was really hard.

You made it look like cake.


Look at you swimming.

You passed that older gentleman that I thought looked suspiciously fast.


You even past the girl with the toned arms.. who stopped to take a breather after each length (of twenty lengths).  In her defence, she had learned to swim just one month previous.  Don’t let that detract from your victory mom.

Notice how attentive I was?  How I cheered you on at every transition?  How I documented all of these amazing moments?

What did M do?

He watched people fish on the TV in the mezzanine.  And ate carrots with Ranch.

I won’t start a “who is the better child” discussion right now.  This post is about you.


And look at you getting out of the pool triumphantly. Such modesty in that fist pump.

Look at you getting on your bike like a real triathlete or something.

While I waited for you to tear up the roads I cheered on my good friend Emily who was slotted to start in the next heat.


Emily was bursting with enthuasiasm and anticipation. Read: shaking in her lycra.


Girl had nerves. Unnecessary nerves.  Her lack of swim preparation was dwarfed by her awesome dryland skills.

Sorry Emily, Mom was coming. Must sprint away. Don’t feel neglected please.

MOM! You didn’t die see?! I knew you wouldn’t.

Yes your feet are numb.

Yes you’re a little sweaty.

Mom was frustrated. This must have been her saying, I'm "Frustrated". Or something else.

Yes you are talking to me about your numb feet when you should be being intense and focusing on being more efficient at putting on your shoes.

But you aren’t dead.

You say your legs felt like lead, but they didn’t look like lead. They looked like steel.

Fast… light… flesh-coloured steel.


Blue steel, because of that prime finish line face.  We can tell you don’t take finish lines lightly.

However, you did not collapse onto your knees upon crossing.  I was disappointed. It’s what I would have done.

Scratch that. Knees + pavement = No.

M was really happy for mom.

He wasn’t allowed to take a power bar from the feed station until she crossed the finish line.

Mom said it was hard.

So did my future neighbour Mr. Deuling.  His lovely wife Amanda was, in fact, disgusted by how hard it was.

While mom recited her race recap to her caring family members, M pursued other interests.


Her name is S.  M attacked S with kisses.

Subtle M, subtle.  S will come along.

But for real: Mom you are super. You did so awesomely. I am proud of you.

Love B.



Filed under Family, Friends, Traipsing Outdoors