Haunted Halloween Book Recommendations

Thursday, October 30, 2014

You will never see a copy of The Shining on Sisi & Leeta’s bookshelf. We are rather sensitive, you see, and anything too scary is apt to leave us chilled, not thrilled.

This is not to say that we don’t love a little Halloween tingle, of course! If you’re the same – feeling the need for an appropriate read without the fear of being up all night – here are a couple of books and films to satisfy even the most timid witch.

Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, by Susanna Clarke.

Ten years in the writing, this novel was a triumph with critics and readers when it debuted in 2004. Ten years on from that, we can say that this extraordinary novel is holding up well. Centered largely around the two title characters, it offers an alternative history of England, one where magic is beginning to return to its nineteenth-century setting. This is a long, solid read that will take you through November.

The Haunted Bookshop by Christopher Morley

We recently reviewed this friendly book our sister blog, Olive Reads. Here is a version of what we had
to say: 
Written in 1919 (handy because the book is now in the public domain) it features a suspenseful
little mystery that's really just a vehicle to let our hero, bookstore owner Roger Mifflin, extol
the power and wonder of books. There are plenty of warm fires to be had in this Brooklyn shop, and just
enough rustling leaves to give it a Halloween tinge.

Photos courtesy of amazon.com website

Frightful Halloween Tea Party

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Yesterday, my mother hosted a delightful Halloween tea party full of ghastly goodies! It is an annual tradition in my family to celebrate Halloween with a ghoulish party, and revel in all its spellbinding mysteries. 

We had an enchanted afternoon at the Little White House in Fort Langley, where we sipped and nibbled at devilish delights.

The Little White House had an unexpected twist that only added to the thrill of our afternoon tea: the house is haunted! Many visitors have noted feeling a female presence in the rooms. Although my sixth sense has not picked up any ghostly vibrations, my mother and sister have felt her!

Tomorrow is the last day to enjoy the Treacherous Tea that the Little White House is hosting.
The eerie nature of this house will certainly prepare you for Halloween night!

Ghoulish Halloween Cupcakes

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Enjoy these eerie cupcakes as the ghouls and goblins ensure a night of treacherous trickery at your doorstep.

These easy stencils create the illusion of hours spend toiling over your cupcakes.

Stencils available here: http://scoop-n-save.com/halloween-cupcake-cookie-tops-stencil/

halloween cupcakes decor stencils

halloween cupcakes decor stencils

Spooky Halloween Cake

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

As my favourite holiday draws near, my thoughts turn to preparation for a night of ghoulish glamour!

When the trick or treaters are in full swing knocking at your door, this eerie delight will sustain you!

Tea of the Month: Irish Breakfast Tea

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

October Tea
Flavour: Irish Breakfast Black Tea
Proprietor: Adagio Teas
Origin: Sri Lanka, India

Irish Breakfast tea is a blend of Assam black teas giving it its noteworthy higher caffeine kick and malty aftertaste. This is also why many prefer to drink this as a ‘breakfast’ tea to give a kick start to the day.

Although the higher caffeine content gives meaning to why this is a breakfast tea, the Irish aspect is still somewhat unknown. It is thought that this tea grew in great popularity when the British East Indian Tea Company was producing tea in the Assam region of India.

This love of this strong, malty tea in Ireland grew in such fervor that the in 1910 the New York Times wrote an article titled “Tea is Ireland’s evil- ranks before alcohol as an enemy of public health.”
The benefits of tea are markedly more researched today and the love affair of Irish Breakfast Tea continues to dominate teapots worldwide.

As the Gaelic say, enjoy your “cupan tae”!

 Image via:

Cranberry Sauce: Two Ways

Friday, October 10, 2014

With the Canadian Thanksgiving and the Fort Langley Cranberry Festival both happening this weekend I thought it would be pertinent to post a cranberry sauce recipe.

Cranberry sauce is my favourite part of the meal, and I have been accused of ladling it on everything rather liberally.

Here are two ways to make easy at-home cranberry sauce. The first is a more classic take and the second one a slightly healthier version, with only honey as the sweetener. 

Classic Cranberry Sauce from Joy of Cooking

2 cups cranberries, washed
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup water
1/2 orange juice
3 teaspoons orange zest

Combine all ingredients. Transfer to pot and cook, uncovered, over medium heat until the cranberries begin to pop and sauce has thickened. Usually 8-10 minutes. Cool and refrigerate for up to 2 days.

honey sweetened cranberry sauce

Honey Sweetened Cranberry Sauce from Against All Grain

Recipe link: http://againstallgrain.com/2011/11/16/scd-and-paleo-cranberry-sauce/

Hummingbird Cake

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Although no hummingbirds are involved in the cake, the name conjures up such whimsical ideas of what it might look like.

This cake originates in the 1960s in Jamaica, and gets its name from the idea that the banana and pineapple ingredients were sweet enough to attract hummingbirds.

Either way, it's a delicious, yet easy cake that is not talked about often enough.
hummingbird cake jamie oliver comfort food
hummingbird cake jamie oliver comfort food
hummingbird cake jamie oliver comfort food
Recipe: http://www.jamieoliver.com/recipes/recipe/hummingbird-cake

An autumnal picnic

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

fall fort langley campbell valley picnic
fort langley campbell valley picnic
fort langley campbell valley picnic
fort langley campbell valley picnic
fort langley campbell valley picnic
A warm autumn afternoon spent picnicking at Fort Langley's Derby Reach and Edgewater Bar and then off on a brisk walk around the beautiful Campbell Valley Park.