Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Breaking A Small Glass Ceiling

I try to keep this blog light and friendly but this post will be nothing of the sort.  I'm pissed and I'm going to write about it.  So, if you're not in the mood for a rant close this now - I understand and we're still good ;)

First of all, here is the article that broke this Mom.

Let me break this article down for you.  The two girls on the team were benched because the opposing team called Sharia Law at half time.

See Daughter B played on a rep travel soccer team in a boys league. So I have first hand knowledge of what it's like being a girl on a boys team. Let's start the story shall we?

B rocking the throw in

It wasn't typical February Saturday in our little town. Sure it was cold but there was spring fever running rampant in the Life & Food house.  Why? Because it was soccer sign up day. A day almost better than Christmas.

Hubster & I made sure the girls were bundled up and we headed to the church where the sign ups were being held.  We were old pro's to the process by now, head in, find the girls birth year table, grab the re-enrollment forms, change any info & sign them, head to the cashier table.

B taking it down the line

This year though we were stopped by one of the coach's that we knew well. She was manning the travel soccer table and asked if Daughter B was interested in trying out for the team - the boys team.  Of course B was all over the idea so we signed her up for that too.  Try outs starting in March.

Once we got home Hubby and I knew that we had to have a discussion with her about being on a rep team and a boys rep team at that.  We told her that being on a travel team meant a lot of practices, a lot of out of town games, plus she would still have to attend her house league games, and that's only if she made the cut - there was no guarantee's she would even be chosen.  Trying to explain that she may be the only girl was a bit trickier but we got through it. We pretty much knew that she'd make the cut but there was some tough competition. We explained that being a girl didn't automatically get her in because it was a boys teams and they would only pick her if she could out play the boys.

B's first tournament with the boys

After two weeks of pretty intense try outs we were told the good news; she'd made it. Her first question was did the girl friend she had made during the practices made it too.  We had to tell her no, she was the only girl.  Again we verified with her that this was something she really wanted to do.  She was a little sad that her friend wouldn't be with her but she was all in.

Practices started the next week and the boys on the team were very welcoming, even psyched really. They knew how good she was and how the entire team would benefit from her being a member.  Even the parents commented how thrilled they were to have her there. Nobody cared that she was a girl.

B got called up to help out A's team

After a week or so of practices the coaches had worked out first and second strings.  Not only was she first string, she was a forward/striker! I can't tell you how big my heart swelled with the news.  A small glass ceiling had shattered for my baby girl and she didn't even know it.

Once the season had officially started and we were travelling all over Southern Ontario it seemed.  I noticed that parents on the other teams were completely shocked at the sight of her.  I heard comments like 'Why is there a girl on that team? Is that allowed?', or 'There can't be good enough boys in that town if they let a such a little girl play' (and let me tell you some pretty talented boys didn't make it - they tried out around 30ish kids for this team) and some other very mean comments that will never be repeated in fear that one day B will read this post. B is little, always has been; but what she lacks in height and mass she makes up for in aces for speed and intuition - ignorance is bliss you mean parents. See, I'm not one for immediate confrontation especially if I know that these people will look like complete assholes all on their own. Once that ref's whistle was blown and that ball was kicked there was no stopping my girl. She out ran and out maneuvered their little princes every time! And she had an entire team of talented boys on her side to help her out. What kills me is I never heard a bad comment from the other players, it was always from the parents.

B going in for the pass (she got the goal)

So, when I read articles like this it completely strikes the wrong cord with this girl mom.  Hubby & I have never instilled gender rolls with our girls. They were raised as people who can do anything and be anything they want and absolutely no one has the right to tell them they can't. If they wanted dolls or hot wheels it didn't matter to us.  All that mattered was they are happy and prepared to face the world head on & confident.  If I was the coach (and I hope B's coach would act in a similar fashion) I'd tell the other team to stuff it! Their team can take the forfeit (to hell with the point spread for our own team) those girls out played all the others that were cut and earned her right to play with the boys. Win or lose, it should always be about whats best for every player on the team, girl or boy. We live in an enlightened society (I thought) and to pull something like this crap infuriates me. Bowing down to some archaic belief is unforgivable.

B having a break with the boys

A final note to the mean parents out there. If you see a girl on a boys team know this; she worked her ass off to get there. So take your head out of your own ass, keep your negative comments to yourself, and cheer her on.

Never underestimate this face.
'And although she may be but little she is fierce'
~William Shakespeare~

Stay Sweet

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Veggie & Bacon Western Sandwich

Well, mom's and dad's we did it! Another school year has finished.  Hopefully, your little Einstein's did well.  It was a bit of a challenging year here at Life & Food because Daughter B started high school and didn't take the transition well at the beginning.  She did manage to pull up her socks and rock 9th grade by the end. Good luck in Grade 10 Superstar! How did your kids fair this year?

Today's recipe is great for the lazy day's of summer. We do brunch in our house quite often since we like sleeping late and nobody is really a 'wake up and immediately eat' type.  This sandwich is great for such an occasion; it's loaded with veggies and proteins to keep you going.

Veggie & Bacon Western Sandwich

Makes: 2 Sandwiches


2 Large Eggs
2 tbsp Milk
Salt & Pepper to taste
2 tbsp Sweet Red Pepper, diced into small cubes
1 Green Onion, diced
6 - 8 Spinach Leafs
Sharp Cheddar Cheese, grated (as much or a little as you'd like)
4 slices Bacon (2 per sandwich)
2 - 4 slices Tomato (1 - 2 per sandwich)
4 slices Bread, toasted


1. Melt a small amount of butter/margarine in a frying pan.  In another pan start your bacon.

2. While your pan is heating up beat together the eggs with the milk, salt and pepper. Stir in the diced red pepper and onion.

3. Gently pour the egg into the prepared pan making sure that the peppers and onions are well distributed.  Fry on both sides and once done add the cheese to one half of the omelette, fold it over and let the cheese melt. Using your flipper cut the folded omelette in half.

4. Toast your bread while your cheese melts and start assembling. I like a little butter & mayo on my sandwich but it's completely optional - do it up the way you like. Lay down a bed of spinach to cover the bread, add the egg, tomato, and bacon. Cut in half & enjoy!

Stay Sweet!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Chicken & Strawberry Spring Mix Salad

Today's post is a bit different.  My BFF, Jenn over at Mom vs the Boys asked me to review the Trudeau Salad Spinner & accessories for her.  I was completely thrilled to do such an awesome favour for her. So, if you like all the fun accessories you see, head over to her blog , read my review and enter to win your own set. Like seriously you're going to want to enter! (click HERE to go right to the contest/review page)

Chicken & Spinach Spring Mix Salad

Chicken & Strawberry Spring Mix Salad


1 - 5 oz pkg Spinach & Arugula mix
2 Chicken breasts
3 - 4 Strawberries
4 Green Onions, chopped
1/2 tsp Paprika
Salt & Pepper
Raspberry Vinaigrette (or your favourite dressing)


1. Season your chicken breasts with the paprika, salt, and pepper and grill, either on the bbq or since when I made this salad we were in the middle of a torrential down pour I used my cast iron grill pan.

2. Wash and spin dry the greens and strawberries.  Thinly slice the strawberries.

3. Once the chicken is done, let cool and slice into bite size pieces.

4. Lightly toss the chopped green onions with the greens in a bowl. Then layer in the chicken and strawberries. Add your dressing & voila! Done.

I love this salad. It's super easy to make and very good for you too.  Give it a try and let me know what you think.

Stay Sweet

Monday, June 8, 2015

Music Monday

If you're going to dance with me, this should be the song that's playing.

Stay Sweet

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Fries Con Queso

Weekends are for kicking back, relaxing, and not having to put too much thought into anything. I know that with kids the kicking back and relaxing usually has to wait until bedtime but there are days that just require deep deck sitting and a very large, very cold adult beverage and a simple dinner while the kids just run around the backyard. By simple I don't mean boring.  And I'm going to make your day today.  No thought and definitely no rushing to the grocery for obscure ingredients.  I'm willing to bet that you're going to have everything on the list already in your fridge.

Fries Con Queso

Fries Con Queso


1/2 cup Kraft Cheez Whiz
1/4 cup Salsa, your favourite kind
Frozen French Fries


1. Make your fries as directed.

2. Microwave the cheez whiz for about 30 seconds on high.  Even if it's not completely melted a good stirring usually finishes it up.  Stir in the salsa until combined. Pour over fries & enjoy!

Like seriously, how easy is that!  It's just not good on fries, add it to hot dogs, burgers, nacho's, anything that requires an excellent cheese sauce.  Give it a try, you won't be disappointed!

Stay Sweet!

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Venison, Broccoli, & Spinach Stir Fry

Getting your hands on venison in these parts can be tricky.  Most people have a friend or a friend of a friend that hunts but getting them to give up a morsel of their prize can take some serious negotiations.  I'm talking about, you'll have to be willing to give up your first born or have to promise to re-roof their two storey house on the hottest day of the year and you have a fear of heights kind of negotiating.  It's not usually easy and it's definitely not something you can just pick up at the grocery store.  We lucked into a few cuts from a friend who received a bit too much for his own use (a bachelor) and considered it a sin to go to waste, I completely agree.

Working with wild game, especially meats like moose and deer can be difficult. Each has a level of 'game-iness' to them and you never really know how intense that taste is until it's cooked.  There is trick to cut that down and that's milk! The higher the fat level in the milk the better.  I don't know the science behind it (probably something with the natural enzymes) but I do know that it works wonders.

Venison, Broccoli, & Spinach Stir Fry

Venison, Broccoli, & Spinach Stir Fry


1.5 lbs Venison
1.5 cups Broccoli
1 cup Spinach, chopped
1.5 cups All-purpose Flour
1 tsp Garlic Powder
1/2 tsp Ginger Powder
Salt & Pepper
1 pkg Blue Dragon Beef & Broccoli Stir Fry Sauce
Sesame Seeds, optional


1. Defrost your venison and place in a deep dish.  Pour enough milk over to cover.  Remember, the higher the fat content the better.  I've used 2%. Wrap the dish is plastic wrap and refrigerate for a minimum of 4 hours or as long as over night.

2. Drain the milk and remove any of the tough connecting tissue from the cuts with a good, sharp fillet knife. Dice into smaller bite size pieces.

3. Combine the flour and seasonings in a small bowl.  Lightly coat each piece of the venison in the flour mixture.  Preheat a large frying pan and add a small amount of butter.  Add enough of the coated meat to cover the bottom of the pan without crowding.  I had to do two batches.  Fry until a nice crust forms on all sides about 2 minutes each side, keeping watch over any of the smaller, thinner pieces.  Remove each piece as it finishes cooking and set aside.  Repeat for any remaining pieces.

4. In the same pan add about 1/3 cup of water and the broccoli.  Once the broccoli is starting to turn bright green add the spinach.  Let the spinach wilt and the water evapourate.  Return the venison to the pan and add the package of stir fry sauce to heat.

5. Place in a serving dish and garnish with the sesame seeds.  Enjoy!

Venison, Broccoli, and Spinach Stir Fry

Stay Sweet!