Mini Muffin…blessing or curse?

“Who ate just the top of the muffin, and left the stump?”

I admit it, it is always me. Everyone else in our family eats a whole muffin at a time. I only ever seem to want half, or if the muffin is large sometimes just a quarter. Even though I reassured them I would be coming back to eat the muffin stump later or perhaps the next day, they were not happy.

“Why can’t you just eat the whole muffin? Don’t leave those stumps behind, that’s gross Mom!”

“Because I only want half. I won’t waste it. I will eat it when I want another half.”

Okay, so no one in our house liked to look at muffin stumps. I got the message loud and clear. I started slicing the muffin in half vertically instead. I assumed there would be no complaints.

“Who left half a muffin in a ziplock baggie on the cupboard?”

Wow! Who knew eating half a muffin at a time was such a crime? Who were these guys in my house who all seemed to develop muffin OCD simultaneously?

I actually stopped buying muffins because I was tired of explaining it was not necessary to eat a whole muffin at one sitting. Then this summer along came Jennifer to my rescue!

Jennifer was a new vendor at our local Farmer’s Market whose summer business project was “Playing With Food” – homemade baking with gluten-free and diabetic friendly choices including mini-muffins!

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Little did Jennifer know she restored peace to muffin eating in our home. I could now eat an entire muffin with no stump or any other portion left behind to offend the muffin police.Hooray!

Over the course of the summer we tried several varieties including chai spice and cornmeal cheese, with the favourites being good ole banana chocolate chip and saskatoon berry, made with freshly picked saskatoons out of Jennifer’s backyard. Yummy!

Okay, I admit it. I could now eat more than one muffin at a time. In fact the day I brought home the saskatoon berry muffins, I am quite positive I ate the equivalent of a whole regular size muffin. Hmmm, maybe even a little more. Was just so easy to pop one of those delicious little morsels into my mouth! Fortunately no one in my family witnessed it.

Suddenly I remembered seeing a report that came out around last Halloween in which researchers concluded people who bought a bag of “mini” size chocolate bars actually consumed more calories than those who bought and ate a full-size chocolate bar. Those who ate the minis fell into the trap of ” it is just not that big, so I will have another”,  without realizing how much they actually ate.

Jennifer is done at the market for this year. Maybe I need to be done with the mini-muffins and go back to leaving stumps around for another day, muffin police be damned!

(If you would like to know more about Jennifer, an elementary teacher who loves to cook and play with food please visit her blog: “Inspired At My Island”. Her blog is filled with recipes, photos, stories about food, and food projects she has used to teach in her classroom. http://inspiredatmyisland.blogspot.ca/)

Brady Bunch House meets Playboy Mansion circa 1971

Tonight my hubby and I went to a real estate open house near where we live. The listed property is a private residence of almost 6000 sq. ft living space, with adjacent metal walled shop on 5 acre gorgeously treed and landscaped lake frontage yard.

The home was built in 1971. It would make an ideal movie set as it appears absolutely untouched since 1971! Was kind of like walking in to the Brady Bunch house meets the Playboy Mansion circa 1971. There was even original furniture from the 70s that comes with! But wait there’s more….a stereo with an 8 track! Now how’s that for an irresistible deal?

Okay, I just lied. Maybe one thing was redone since 1971 and that would be the flooring. It was definitely missing the orange, green, and/or gold shag carpet, but trust me that was the only thing not original.

My husband said if the realtor asked why we came , he was going to say “because my wife wanted to have 70s flashbacks”. I do admit it. I did enjoy the 70s!

Being priced at nearly a million dollars and requiring tens of thousands of dollars in interior renovations I find it doubtful that a private home buyer will come along to empty their pockets on renovating 6000 sq. ft.  The home has been on the market for several years already.

While perusing the house along with a couple dozen other “Looky- Lou’s”, I did mention several times that it was in the perfect location just off a major highway,  near outskirts of town, overlooking the lake (it even faces the sunsets!) for a fabulous (and I do mean fabulous darling!) restaurant.

As we drove home I continued to brainstorm several other potential ideas for the flashback house , as my husband and I now refer to it. I could not resist the urge to e-mail the real estate agent when we arrived back home:

Good evening Ms. Realtor,

It was very interesting to view the “Flashback” residence.

The house would require so many renovations to update it, I wonder how viable it is to sell as a private residence.

Perhaps the County should be consulted as to possible rezoning to “commercial”, as that might enable you to market it to a different type of potential purchaser.

My mind really got rolling when I started seeing it as a commercial property. I was completely serious when I said it would make a fabulous upscale restaurant with downstairs lounge….”Bellisima’s by the Lake” perhaps?  (Bellisima being the now deceased former original owner’s name.)

I think they missed the boat (no pun intended) with adjacent Corbin House by making it too small and without a kitchen, in such a great spot on the lake yet next to the highway and town. Does the Pike Lake Recreation Society (or whatever it is) that looks after Corbin House and the campground possibly see the potential in acquiring the neighbouring property? The house could be renovated into an event centre/ larger banquet facility / restaurant / bed & breakfast or combination thereof. Additionally, the shop if fixed up could be used in place of the tents that currently need to be set up next to Corbin House for special events. It could even be set up more formally as a “summer hall” with stage and seating for weddings, convention  / company bbqs, and concerts.

I actually was also serious when I told my husband it would make a great “Gentleman’s Club” as it is in a private location, very discrete.

(Did not tell realtor this, as I did not want her to think I was totally wacko but I thought an appropriate name for a Gentleman’s club staying true to the fur trading roots of the area might be “The Fur Trader”. Then on second thought, we do live in the era of the bikini wax so perhaps not as apropos as I initially thought. Hmmm…what about “The Beaver Lodge”?)

Or what about a private club such as the “Petroleum Club”  where people pay to join , then have access to the facilities whatever they might be such as meeting rooms / lounge / restaurant / spa.

Given the privacy and grounds it would also make a fabulous artists colony/ retreat centre where artists, visual artists / writers / musicians, could come rent room and board with studio space for weeks or months at a time to create.

As you can tell I have lots of vision. Sadly, no cash.

Good luck with your efforts to sell this diamond in the rough!

NOTE:

All of the names  / locations have been changed for purposes of this blog. If however you have lots of cash and need vision, contact me! I will tell you where it is. 060 😉