Here we are at the first post of a calendar year but still enjoying the 12 days of Christmas! I am once again sneaking in late Friday afternoon to get a head start on this post, as the next 24 hours look a bit manic.
    My recent boarder, Steven is currently enroute from New Brunswick with some family members to his paternal grandfather’s birthday celebration in Ontario. we had discussed the possibility of their breaking the journey here but plans were rather vague until yesterday when I received a text asking if he and his cousin could sleep here tonight. 
Of course this is not a problem, in fact it gives me the opportunity to give him his Christmas gift of Newfoundland Mittens. I’m extremely excited about the choice of patterned they are called “GRENFELL TriggerMittens” and ,as some of my readerskow, ALL of our Labrador Retrievers have been named after the famous medical missionary to Nfld. & Labrador , Sir Wilfred Grenfell.
     Given that Steven took quite a liking to Thomason and also knew my dear departed Wil, I’m hoping the mittens will be a special memento for him as well as keeping his fingers warm!
      The only snag to this overnight visit is that Natalie and Andrew (Natalie is a Day Camp Alumnus and she and her husband Andrew were the first regular attenders of The Pod) are coming for a visit at 9am tomorrow morning 😊
     Somehow I will need to do all the morning chores, feed breakfast to Steven and his cousin, take Thomason for his morning walk and still be ready to greet Natalie and Andrew at 9am.
     To complicate matters further, another special friend who has been away over Christmas texted me today to see if we could have a visit and exchange gifts (you guessed it)tomorrow 😊
     So she is now coming for High Tea at 5pm tomorrow afternoon.
     The original plan was to spend the coming weekend “Changing the Decorations” but I think it was God’s Plan for me to celebrate  Christmas right until 12th night. The tree is still fresh and fragrant and the bright colours around the house are warm and welcoming when it is cold and grey outside. So it will be Christmas here at least until Sunday afternoon at which time I will most regretfully take down the tree. It looks as if I will need to blitz the house on Monday but the coming week there are no meetings or visits scheduled so I’m sure it will all work out in the end 😊
This afternoon I have been baking two big pans of Cinnamon Buns for tomorrow’s breakfast and morning visit and now part of my mind is trying to pull together some ideas for High Tea but before we wrap this up I guess we need a recipe.

As a special Christmas Season Treat I bought a small box of wild harvested frozen shrimp and last evening made a quick and delicious “Shrimp and Broccoli Bowl” the homemade Teriyaki Sauce makes this dish extra yummy 😊
Shrimp & Broccoli Bowls

2 Tbsps. sunflower oil
8oz.  large raw shrimp, peeled
1 bunch broccoli broken into florets
1 Tbsp.  water
¾ cup Teriyaki Sauce (recipe follows)
12 oz. brown rice noodles
2 Tbsps. sesame seeds
Cook the noodles until they are almost al dente then drain and set aside. Heat the oil in a large frying pan and briefly sauté the broccoli. Add the water, cover and steam for 2-4 minutes or until bright green. Add the shrimp and sauté, stirring gently, until the have turned pink on both sides. Add the Teriyaki sauce and cooked noodles and toss together over very low heat.
Transfer to bowls and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Serve immediately. Serves  

Teriyaki Sauce
    • ½ cup + 2 Tbsps. water, divided
    • ¼ cup brown sugar
    • ¼ cup Tamari
    • 1 tsp. rice vinegar
    • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
    • 1 tsp. grated fresh ginger 
    • 2 tsp. cornstarch

    Combine the ½ cup water, sugar, Tamari, vinegar, garlic and ginger in a small saucepan. Bring to the boil then reduce to a simmer. Dissolve the cornstarch