Christmas In Alberta


Hi everyone!

Thank you for your kind words about my Pumpkin Pie Cinnamon Rolls entry for Challenge #8! The post was in the works for about 3 weeks now and I was soooo happy to finally hit publish. Voting is now open if you care to show your support. They are cutting 50% of contestants, so only 12 will remain for round #9.


What’s with all this snow, you ask?

Eric and I are in Alberta visiting my family for an early Christmas celebration!


We leave on Wednesday and I am already very sad to say goodbye to my family. I’m pretty sure I am going to stuff my nephews in my suitcase and make a run for it. ;)

We were a bit scared during the days leading up to our trip out West because we heard that there was a deep freeze going down in the Prairies…



Luckily, OSGMOM told us that it would be ‘warming up’ to –10C by the time we arrived.

Err… ;)


I need layers…lots and lots of layers.

I have also been drinking my body weight in hot chocolate and tea.


Luckily, fur ball Rudi has been keeping us warm…


He is never cold!

Well, sometimes…when he wants to snuggle up to The Cat Whisperer (Eric).


I hope Sketchie doesn’t see this!


They have a view of The Rockies from their backyard. I guess this makes up for the cold! :)


Gorgeous, eh?


My mom and sister Kristi surprised us with a mostly vegan Christmas dinner on Sunday night.


It was very exciting.

I came into the kitchen to find that they were working hard on a bunch of my recipes!


Remember that crazy night?

This time I got to have it made for me!


Mom said, ‘I hope you will still love me if I screw up these recipes!!’

I said, “I don’t care what you do as long as I don’t have to cook!’ ;)


I had total faith in my worker bees.

I kept them in line with a spoon!


I got to make the vegan gravy and then I forgot about it on the burner and nearly fried it! Just a day in the life…

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The non-vegans had stuffed chicken and myself and my friend Ashley had In A Jiffy spelt veggie patties.

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They were awesome in a roll with vegan gravy! It was a great idea to make for the vegan protein portion.

High Protein Garlic Mashed Potatoes:


I also brought along Soft Peanut Butter Cookies for my nephews and the rest of my family. They were a huge hit!


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Mmmm, I filled my plate and was one happy vegan!


I had a whole wheat dinner roll with vegan butter, peas, butternut squash, This Ain’t Grandmas Sweet Potato Casserole, High Protein Garlic Mashed Potatoes, In A Jiffy Veggie Spelt patties, vegan gravy, and Cranberry, Pear, and Pecan Spinach Salad.


For dessert, my mom made my Pumpkin Gingerbread with Spiced Buttercream!! Gosh I love this dessert.


And some non-vegan layered cake!


The boys watched the Grey Cup football…


The ladies did not. :)

Then we exchanged gifts with Kristi and the family. I got some amazing pictures of my nephews, a new apron, a holiday table runner, and artwork from my oldest nephew. :)

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I told my nephew that my fridge was covered in his artwork, but I was going to add all of the new drawings to it too, and his eyes lit up like a Christmas tree and he said, ‘REALLY???’

Then Papa and mammoth Kinder Eggs stole the show and that was that!


Well, we are off for another day of adventures. See you later!

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{ 120 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Lauren October 20, 2012

Seriously in LOVE with the Beatrix Potter table wear! I would love to find something like that.


2 Helen December 11, 2010

i made your gingerbread, but omitted the pumpkin and altered the frosting a bit–instead of using the spice blend, i used 1/4 tsp peppermint extract and once i frosted the gingerbread, sprinkled crushed candy cane on top. so good! a fun alternative of your recipe for christmastime. although, i will definitely need to make your pumpkin version next year!


3 Hope December 2, 2010

Lurker but never a commenter….. but I’m quite curious, is that picture of Springbank Rd just outside of Calgary?

Love your site and recipes, I have tried so many and never had a failure yet! Glad you had a great trip!


4 RhodeyGirl December 2, 2010

Now I am REALLY excited for the holidays!!!!!!

Have fun with your family. It is so sweet that they made such an effort to have vegan dishes! They are awesome!!


5 Erica December 2, 2010

I’m glad to hear you’re having a wonderful time in Alberta (and that you escaped the weird cold snap, especially since it’s not usually past -30 until jan/feb). Since you’re so close to the mountains, if you have the time, you should give some of the trails a try; there are few things prettier than the Rockies in winter.

Thanks for sharing your lovely photographs with us readers.


6 Laura December 1, 2010

Love the fluffy kitty!!! My mom has those same bowls with the nursery rhymes written inside.


7 Jolene ( December 1, 2010

What a beautiful Christmas you had with your family :-)


8 kristin @ the expat diaries December 1, 2010

It’s so awesome that they surprised you with your vegan yummies. Have a wonderful visit! Those sweet potatoes look SO amazing. And the Rockies aren’t to shabby either!


9 Roz December 1, 2010

Those are fantastic photos. Looks like you are having a great time! And Rudi is adorable!!!!


10 Allison December 1, 2010

Wow, your pictures look amazing! I can’t believe all that snow up there! We just got our first flurries in Chicago!


11 Becky December 1, 2010

Love your post! It looked so beautiful! I love snow! I have a question do you have any kind of recipe for a vegan pizza? I love pizza and I have been craving it, but didn’t know how to make it vegan. I am new to vegan, I also incorporate raw into my diet, however, it is getting cold where I live and I need some warm food. Thank you so much! I hope that you had a safe trip home!


12 Jessica @ Jessica Balances December 1, 2010

OH my goodness – Eric, the Cat Whisperer! So adorable and funny! :) glad you are enjoying an early holiday!


13 Christina December 1, 2010

You obviously have some mad photography skilz girly. Would you mind sharing a bit about the SLR camera that you use, and how you’ve developed your skills over the years? I am really interested in purchasing a DLSR camera, but am a bit intimidated by all the choices out there. Thanks so much!


14 Erin December 1, 2010

Welcome back to Alberta! It’s hard to beat on a sunny winter day, especially when you can see the mountains. It’s so beautiful here today – glad you got some nice weather in the end :) You sure look like your mom and sister. What a beautiful family. Your dinner looks amazing too! It’s awesome that your family is so supportive.


15 Amy at TheSceneFromMe December 1, 2010

Oh how I’d love a piece of pumpkin gingerbread cake now! I love icing and that all looks scrumptious!


16 Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table December 1, 2010

You guys look just alike – and you’re all gorgeous! (So is the food! :) )


17 Felicia (a taste of health with balance) December 1, 2010

beautiful photos! i love clear teapots – i see it hidden in that photo haha!


18 Coco December 1, 2010

The roasted butternut squash pic looks so good. Butternut is such a sultry vegetable, especially when purreed to make silky soups!


19 Liana @ femme fraiche December 1, 2010

Awww what a special holiday. I loved your table decor…have a great trip! It looks beautiful


20 Kristy December 1, 2010

That was so kind of your family! Y’all look so happy!!! :-)


21 Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes December 1, 2010

All this good looks so good! If only I could climb into the pictures to enjoy the food with you!


22 retro sweets December 1, 2010

It’s only December first and you already got your gift???? Huhu.. will you be my Santa and give me that cute little fuzzy cat? :)

Anyway, I love your dinner table. I thought you’ll include the brown ribbons in your peanut butter cookies, they look great with it.


23 Wei-Wei December 1, 2010

Your family is amazing! Their acceptance of your veganism is lovely, too. Have you done a post on that? I’m curious to know what they thought when you first went vegan!


24 Steph in Dubai December 1, 2010

I wondered where you were! Glad you are having a good time with your gorgeous family!


25 Kate @ Walking in the Rain December 1, 2010

That view is amazing!

Rudi looks like a great way to stay warm if its -33C.


26 Laura November 30, 2010

An early Christmas celebration! So fun!
I havent even started shopping :O


27 Hillary [Nutrition Nut on the Run] November 30, 2010

I love the pic of the boys! Too cute.


28 Alicia November 30, 2010

Sounds like a fun time! That marshmallow sweet potato yumminess looks sooo good, is that recipe in your recipe section? (not sure what its called)


29 KaraHadley November 30, 2010

your family seems so amazingly supportive. that must have been the best christmas gift ever.
oh, and your nephews seem too cute for words.


30 Lois November 30, 2010

That looks like the view from my sister’s house… they must be neighbors! Enjoy your family vacation.


31 Jessica @ The Process of Healing November 30, 2010

Aw, how fun!!! That makes me so excited for Christmas!


32 Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin November 30, 2010

Oh my gosh, that’s freezing! It’s still hovering around 0 here, but that’s cold enough for me! :P

That looks like such a great early Christmas celebration! I’m glad you got to enjoy some time with your family!


33 Kelli November 30, 2010

You are teasing me with the Thanksgiving Menu! I tried on my computer and my husbands to download it, but it wont work! I WANT those recipes so bad!


34 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 1, 2010

it is an Adobe PDF file…I think you need to have that supported on your PC to work. :)


35 Cori November 30, 2010

I’m glad you enjoyed your time in my province! (Although far away from where I live, if you can see the mountains.)


36 stacey-healthylife November 30, 2010

How fun, looks like a great time.


37 bitt November 30, 2010

What a fun time. Love all the eats.

I am so jealous of the kinder surprise eggs you have in canada. Do they have a vegan one? they should.


38 Heidi - Apples Under My Bed November 30, 2010

awe, such fun!! cold & snow like that is SO foreign to me. I cant even imagine…
Heidi xo


39 Allie November 30, 2010

Awesome pictures! It looks like you are having fun :)


40 Bekah @ runtrackmind November 30, 2010

What a beautiful holiday with the family, a true blessing.

So my question to you is how tempted were you to run that snowy mountain road? I would have been so tempted. =)


41 Abby @ Have Dental Floss, Will Travel November 30, 2010

Ah, so does this early Christmas celebration explain the Christmas morning do-it-yourself cinnamon bun bar in November? I was wondering about that from your last post.

Cast my vote for Foodbuzz – good luck!


42 Tracey November 30, 2010

I love your blog and have been reading for a looong time and when I saw you were in Alberta I got really excited, but I was even more excited because telling by the photos you took I know which city and which community you are in as well because I have family in that community too!!

Thats so neat!



43 Annie@stronghealthyfit November 30, 2010

What an AMAZING view! Lovely place to visit family :-)


44 Cara Craves... November 30, 2010

I can’t believe it’s that cold out there already…

That cat is hilarious…sort of looks like a cat pancake.


45 Moni'sMeals November 30, 2010

What a lovely time. Such good food and a lovely family. :)

Stay Warm!


46 Embodying Freedom November 30, 2010

I never knew Alberta was so beautiful…or so cold! Chicago hasn’t had snow yet, but I’m bracing myself for the unbearable cold that I know is in our future! :)


47 Healthy Chocoholic November 30, 2010

All of the food looks amazing!!!!!!!!!!!! The scenery does too! Just this week I was in West Virginia with my family, and it snowed on Saturday. We went to see a waterfall, and it was beautiful!


48 salah@myhealthiestlifestyle November 30, 2010

all that food looks wonderful!! You have my vote :-)


49 Tanya @ Vegan Faith November 30, 2010

I made the Gingerbread with Buttercream frosting and it was delicious. Everyone raved about it! Thank you so much for offering such delicious recipes! You are fabulous!


50 Ashley November 30, 2010

Angela, SO great to finally meet you in person! You are every bit as lovely as your blog indicates :) Thanks again many times for the invite and the DELICIOUS dinner!
Let me know what you think of The Coup if you make it there ;)


51 Ali November 30, 2010

Speaking of high protein garlic mashed potatoes… haha!

I decided I would make these for Thanksgiving, my attempt at sneaking something vegan and healthy into a non-vegan household/holiday. Well, everyone loved them! Rave reviews, but of course I couldn’t share my secrets! I did decide to roast the garlic in the oven first, then add it to the beans and a little Earth Balance in food processor. Then I mashed the whole mixture up with a potato masher. They were fabulous, thank you!


52 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 1, 2010

Glad you liked them!


53 Gail November 30, 2010

Where did they get those bowls? I love them!


54 Jil @ Big City, Lil Kitchen November 30, 2010

Brrr! Chilllly! So not ready for snow… haha


55 Kate November 30, 2010

Is Rudi a himalayan? He looks exactly like my parents cat, Winston. Rudi is adorable!!


56 Gail November 30, 2010

I used to have a himalayan and he looked just like Rudi as well! I miss him :0(


57 Kate (What Kate is Cooking) November 30, 2010

I will definitely be making that pumpkin gingerbread for my Christmas feast as well :)


58 Beth @ bethcooks November 30, 2010

Awww….I miss that view! Where is your family from in AB? Mine lives in Lethbridge, Pincher Creek, and Calgary. I absolutely love it there…


59 Camille November 30, 2010

1. That is darn cold!
2. That may be the cutest kitty ever :) Don’t let my cat hear me say that, though!


60 jen November 30, 2010

Love the snow pictures!!! Makes me excited for it to start snowing here :)



61 Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) November 30, 2010

Oh what a gloriously happy, fun post! I can feel the happiness you have for your family, and to be home (even tho it sounds friggggggid out!) I grew up in a freezing cold place and never wish to feel my skin freeze in 2 seconds flat…ha!

The food, the desserts, the fact that YOU didnt have to cook, the time w/ your fam…so lovely!

And oh, all you girls are just gorgeous! Lots of blond hair and blue eyes and gorgeous-ness going on in this post :)

Enjoy the last few days w/ your family…and any leftover PB Cookies :)


62 Emily S November 30, 2010

This post made me finally decide to bake your pumpkin gingerbread cake with frosting. Yummy!
I love how everything looks so festive! Spending the Holidays with family is what it is about, isn’t it? And how lucky that they made an entire vegan feast for you to enjoy! My extended family is still a little leery about my vegetarian ways, a veggie feast that i didn’t have to prepare would be like a dream come true.


63 Sana November 30, 2010

Oh my that is cold! I am soo happy that you have an amazing family that is so willing to cook for you :)


64 Kierstan @ Life {and running} in Iowa November 30, 2010

What a beautiful view!!


65 Amber K November 30, 2010

Aw, I wish my family would be down with having an awesome amazing feast like this!


66 tweal November 30, 2010

Wow, I am really in the xmas spirit now! SO much nice looking food and a beautiful tree too. And all that snow – ok I’m not in the spirit for that just yet ;)


67 Ashley November 30, 2010

Foods always better when you didn’t have to cook it. It looks like a lot of fun, I already voted :) have a nice rest of your trip.


68 Kath November 30, 2010

We have the same Potter bowls!!

Also, love that kitty!!


69 Maddie (Healthy Maddie) November 30, 2010

Looks like you are having a great time! Enjoy the rest of your trip :)


70 Katy (The Singing Runner) November 30, 2010

Ah! I’m so jealous! We don’t have snow in Florida! (I’m hoping that when I go to Maryland/ DC for Christmas I’ll see some)

I love the coffee mug by the way! Too cute! :)


71 Morgan @ Life After Bagels November 30, 2010

We always have to start celebrating Christmas early with our families too – because there’s four of them (yes my parents and my inlaws are divorced) We’re trying to finalize all the dates right now so everyone gets visits.


72 Lily's Health Pad November 30, 2010

OMG I can’t get over Eric and Rudi! CUTEST THING EVER!!!!!


73 Paige is Running Around Normal November 30, 2010

Your family is beautiful! That’s SO nice of your mom and sister to make you a vegan feast :)
What a fun weekend :)


74 Emily November 30, 2010

Your photos are beautiful! :) Your posts always make me so happy.


75 Shanna November 30, 2010

What a happy gorgeous family you have! Amazing =)


76 Tina @ Faith Fitness Fun November 30, 2010

How awesome that they cooked for you!!! And -10C is warming up? I so could never live in Canada.


77 Krystina (Basil & Wine) November 30, 2010

You made me SO excited for Christmas! What fun! :D


78 Vicky @ eat live spin November 30, 2010

Love the pictures. Question… are there vegetarian marshmallows???


79 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 1, 2010

Yes there are, but my mom made two versions- one with non vegan marsh. and one vegan without. I use DANDIES brand of vegan marsh. and they are incredible!!!


80 traci November 30, 2010

I’m glad you have a great visit with your family :) Beautiful fun pictures !


81 chelsey @ clean eating chelsey November 30, 2010

Such a sweet post – It’s so much fun to spend time with family this time of the year. I’m so glad you’re having a great time!


82 Nicole @ Geek Turned Athlete November 30, 2010

I have to say, that icing is wonderful! I make it for my in-laws about a month ago, and they said it was better than nonvegan icing!! Yay!

Glad you guys had fun! That tablescape is beautiful. ;)


83 melissa @ the delicate place November 30, 2010

that snow is beyond! i love looking at it but i hate being cold so much that the idea of a tropical christmas sounds appealing to me haha. what a thoughtful feast your family prepared! enjoy each and every moment x


84 Leanne November 30, 2010

Where in Alberta are you?

I live in Alberta (yay!) and although its cold & we have snow from October – May (& sometimes in June!) I absolutely love living here and think it’s such a beautiful province. It made me so happy to see Alberta pictures in your blog this morning!


85 Balanced Healthy Life November 30, 2010

Those are some cold cold temps! Reminds me of when I used to live in Minnesota!!!


86 Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat November 30, 2010

OMG you’re reminding me of when I grew up in Edmonton SO much right now! Looks like you’re having a fabulous time. Your family are awesome for preparing so many vegan recipes for you, especially the gingerbread cake with buttercream frosting. That was one of my favourites at Thanksgiving! Stay warm! :D


87 Nienke at Revel November 30, 2010

Oh my word – the view of the Rockies is incredible!

So glad you get to spend some quality time with the fam, cause that’s what it’s all about, right :)


88 Stella November 30, 2010

Glad you’re enjoying our famous early christmas weather in Alberta! Your pictures have me lusting after christmas dinner already!!

p.s. The view of the rockies gets very old once it hits -40, nothing makes up for that!


89 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 1, 2010

haha I can imagine!


90 Jessica M November 30, 2010

Looks like you guys are having fun! I am so excited to go home and see my family now!

I wanted to tell you that you practically planned my whole Thanksgiving meal! I made your pull apart rolls, the vegan gravy, the HP mashed potatoes, the spice cake, and the walnut loaf. It was all so wonderful! You’re right, the vegan gravy is AMAAAZZING!!! My non-vegan husband even loved it. Thanks for the recipes!! : )


91 Jen @ Spacks Scramble November 30, 2010

Yay Alberta! That’s where I’m from! Good thing you missed that deep freeze that we had. I was wearing legwarmers and long johns everyday!

The vegan Christmas dinner looks delish. I definitely need to try out some of those recipes.


92 Leah @ Why Deprive? November 30, 2010

Alberta in the winter is crazy! The weather is just all over the place.

That view is incredible though! Just wow!


93 Sierra November 30, 2010

You and your sister’s skin is gorgeous! I notice in every picture of you that your skin glows. Makes me jealous! :) Do you have a recipe for vegan gravy? I tried to make it for Thanksgiving and mine didn’t turn out so great. :(


94 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 1, 2010

thank you!

Yes there is a recipe I adapted from ED&BV cookbook. I included it on my thanksgiving recipes PDF from the original post. :)


95 Melissa @ I Never Imagined November 30, 2010

Ohhh what a lovely time for you and your family! And how sweet of them to cook a mostly vegan meal! Sounds like my dream!


96 Alaina November 30, 2010

I love that cat!!! And that view :-)


97 Holly @ couchpotatoathlete November 30, 2010

I love the Beatrix Potter dishes — makes me wish I had a collection of my own!


98 Faith @ lovelyascharged November 30, 2010

Ah, what a fun early Christmas! I thought my family was jumping the gun doing our presents on Christmas Eve @ Midnight because we never could wait till morning ;) And hey, who knows, maybe fried gravy is the next big thing!?!?


99 Tiffany November 30, 2010

Looks like you are having fun and the food looks great!


100 Lisa November 30, 2010

I love the snow photos!! What a gorgeous Winter Wonderland!


101 JenATX November 30, 2010

that first picture is beautiful… it belongs on a christmas card! i’m so glad you got to spend quality time with the family :) your nephews sound adorable.. way to be a “cool” aunt w/ the cookies haha


102 Meredith November 30, 2010

aww this post made me teary! I miss the frigid prairies! The mountains — my heart melts. Hope you guys make time for some skiing!


103 Heather November 30, 2010

Great post! I am originally from Alberta and this post has me excited to go home for my early Christmas as well!!


104 Shelby November 30, 2010

I’m so glad you are enjoying time with family!
That all looks great!!!!!
And is that cat a Ragdoll??? It is absolutely beautiful…I have Ragdolls and it looks a lot like one :-)


105 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 1, 2010

Yes Rudi is a ragdoll :) Sweetest cat ever


106 Amanda (Eating Up) November 30, 2010

Ah it all looks beautiful–the inside and outside! What a great view!


107 christyn @ All Ways Nutritious November 30, 2010

voted!! sometimes food tastes better when prepared for you…especially by your mom.


108 Kayla November 30, 2010

I LOVE Kinder schokolade! It reminds me of my Oma, who used to give us bunte teller at Christmastime — colorful plates (the literal German translation) filled with nuts, chocolates and other German candies (including Kinder products once in a blue moon) and the requisite orange and apple. :)

Looks like you’re having a blast. Enjoy!


109 OSGMOM November 30, 2010

My first Vegan dinner was a success & delicious – yeah! Thanks to my Assistants in the kitchen, Kristi & Eric. I couldn’t have pulled it together without you! Thanks to my clean up crew, Peter and John :)


110 Ashley November 30, 2010

It was AWESOME :) You can cook for this Vegan-food-aholic anyday!!


111 OSGMOM November 30, 2010

I’m so happy to hear that you enjoyed the meal! We’ll have to get together again for another Vegan meal and try out a few more of Ange’s recipes.


112 Sabrina November 30, 2010

so amazing! i wish u were staying longer with them your family is sooo beautiful. You must miss them sooo much and you all look so happy and warm there. I hope you have a wonderful time you deserve it and can I say that your cinnamon bun post has got my vote and has got to win you just blow the competion out of the water over and over again.
BTW those kinder eggs are just the next size up from the small ones in italy where I live they go up three sizes from that to a truely massive massive egg ;)



113 Madeleine@ Stepping to the Brightside November 30, 2010

Awww, what a gorgeous early Christmas celebration… Glad you got to be with your faraway relatives. I’ve NEVER had a white Christmas! Growing up in South Carolina and now living in Los Angeles- it rarely drop below 40 degrees F, in fact. I guess there are pluses and minuses to both situations ;)


114 Bethany @ More Fruit Please November 30, 2010

This post really warmed my heart and even made me tear up a bit just from missing my own family. I can’t wait to get back home to them in a few weeks now! It’s clear where you get your hostess and presentation skills from… your mom’s house is beautiful! And I love the Beatrix Potter dishes… that would be something that my mom would set out for the children too!


115 Alina @ Duty Free Foodie November 30, 2010

That cat picture with Eric is so adorable! I am sure Sketchie would *not* approve. Have fun playing in the snow!


116 Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg November 30, 2010

Wow– this is such a cozy holiday post!!! Beautiful pictures, as always…and I LOVE the cat! :-)


117 Kate (What Kate is Cooking) November 30, 2010

Your pumpkin gingerbread will be making an appearance at my Christmas as well :)


118 Allison @ Food for Healing November 30, 2010

ah yes that cold spell was horrible! glad you were able to miss it. Saskatchewan had it just as bad, and it is definitely much warmer this week -10C is warm believe it or not haha
you should tough it out more and visit the prairies more often, they are truly beautiful, Saskatoon in the winter is pretty amazing by the river.
Have you been? hit me up if you do stop by!


119 Christina November 30, 2010

Looks like you are having a beautiful time with your family! Enjoy every moment of down time ♥


120 Jessica @ How Sweet It Is November 30, 2010

Holy snow! This makes me so excited for Christmas. You and your sis are so beautiful too.


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