Modern with an Em

Rant 2.0 October 16, 2008

Filed under: The Modern Home — modernwithanem @ 12:28 pm
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I need a new job. I really hate mine. Problem is, I hate job hunting just as much. Especially when it comes to finding one that works around the rest of my life. Ah well.

Also, my boyfriend and I have recently been doing business with a company that shall remain unnamed for the time being, and we are becoming increasingly frustrated with their business practices. We are spending a good chunk of money on products being supplied by them, and I feel as though they aren’t entirely appreciative of that. Either that, or they really just don’t know what they are doing. One minute, they have the products in stock. Then they’re backordered. Then they’ll arrive on one date, and then another date, and then another date. Three months later, we still don’t have everything we ordered. Some days, they have no idea where these products are. Other days, they blame the delays on the manufacturer. Every time, they promise to call or e-mail us back with updates, and that only happens about 10 per cent of the time. Multiple times, they have told us to expect our order to be shipped in the very near future, and then fail to notify us when that changes and the order is unable to be shipped again for whatever reason. Every time I call, I have to speak to a different person. It’s ridiculous that I even have to call them as often as I do. And their excuses are just as unacceptable. If someone tells me that they have what I ordered and will ship it out immediately, and then 2 weeks later, I call and am told, “Oh, [she] must have been mistaken, or it was someone else’s order or something…”, I should not be expected to accept that explanation. I highly doubt that someone else ordered the exact same number of items in the exact same style and pattern in the same timeframe as we did. Based on the facts, it’s not overly likely.

Honestly, if it were my business, I would be appalled that it is taking in excess of 3 months to complete an order containing products that are all coming from the same manufacturer. I wouldn’t understand why my employees wouldn’t give someone the courtesy of sending out something as little as an e-mail to say, “I’m sorry, but an error/delay/problem/miscommunication has occured, and your order will not be able to be shipped this week as initially anticipated. We apologize for this inconvenience.” I would drill into them that the number one business practice to remember is to return someone’s calls when you say that you will return them. It’s just a simple matter of respect for the person you are doing business with. And please, do NOT make excuses for someone else, especially when you are just sitting in front of your computer and have no idea what happened outside of your cubicle. The admission of a lack of explanation is better than a false explanation that you pulled out of thin air. It is perfectly fine to admit that you don’t know the answer to something.

I just want what we ordered. Soon.


Mouse. October 7, 2008

Filed under: The Modern Home — modernwithanem @ 1:08 am
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I just saw a mouse.

I am not one of those women who is scared of mice. I know that unless I come into contact with it, its excrements, or something it has contaminated, it cannot harm me. Nonetheless, I do not like the idea of sharing my apartment with a rodent. I had a feeling that I had a mouse here based on noises I’ve heard over the last week or two, but I was okay with the idea of a mouse as long as it didn’t get into my food or clothes and as long as I didn’t have to see it. But now that I have visual confirmation, I’m creeped out. And the idea that it could easily just run up the stairs to my bedroom is disconcerting.

I think that I dislike mice.

I hope that it doesn’t get into the oven.


Go with the Flo September 11, 2008

Filed under: The Modern Home,The Modern Mom — modernwithanem @ 2:34 pm
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Even if you don’t have kids, I think that this is a wonderful invention.

Boon Inc. — which designs some awesome products for the modern parent — has come up with Flo, a water deflector and protective faucet cover with bubble bath dispenser. Now, I realize that the colour and design may not appeal to absolutely everyone, but I love it.

If you have kids, this is a great alternative to all of those animal-shaped polyester faucet covers that can often be easily pulled off. Flo has a spring-activated grip that easily attaches to all standard faucets (with or without a shower diverter) and many non-standard faucets that are of a similar size and shape to the standard ones.

There is NO assembly or special installation required! Flo is also covered in a soft material around the edges to prevent any bathtime injuries.

The waterfall effect of the spout on Flo is great for washing kids’ hair, and the bubble bath reservoir can be filled up prior to bathtime, allowing for bubbles to be easily dispensed at the push of a button.

And if you’re childless (like myself), think of it this way: Picture yourself relaxing in the tub after a hard day at work or school, surrounded by bubbles and candles, listening to the soothing sound of a luxurious waterfall. Now that sounds pretty darn good to me.

Flo by Boon Inc.


Get a Handle on Outdoor Cooking September 10, 2008

Now this is the perfect example of something seemingly so simple and almost obvious, but so neat.

Brookstone has designed a stylish and portable outdoor grill that looks nothing like your typical camping gear.

Weighing less than 25 lbs (which sounds heavy, but think about how much a typical barbeque weighs!) with a sleek clamshell design and a hot orange colour, this portable grill is sure to stretch out those last precious moments of summer. It is equipped with a 9450 BTU stainless steel burner (this means nothing to me, but my boyfriend assures me that this is a good thing), has a porcelain enamel-coated cast iron grill area, and uses standard 14.1 and 16.4 oz. propane cylinders (no outlets or charcoal required! Yay!). Top that off with a sturdy handle and retractable legs, and you’ve got a grill that will travel well and store away easily, no matter how many bags of “just-in-case” clothes and shoes you decide to pack into the trunk of your car for your weekend camping trip.


Mac and Cheese Revamped August 21, 2008

For all of you moms on the go with limited time, who don’t want to feed their kids something out of a box that involves powdered cheese, this one is for you! It’s quick and easy, it encompasses all of the major food groups, is filling and kid-friendly, and is a great way to use up your leftovers. You can substitute any veggies you like (or that your kids will eat!) Bon appétit!

The Modern Mac And Cheese


3 cups of whole wheat penne (you can substitute your favourite pasta, but fatter noodles work best)
1 cup of chicken, cubed (or whatever you have left over in your fridge. You can substitute sausage or ham, as well)
1/2 cup of mushrooms, sliced
1/2 cup of red pepper, diced or sliced
3 tbsp. pesto sauce (store-bought works great)
1 tbsp. olive oil
1/2 cup to 1 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese (put in as much as you like!)


  1. Fill a medium pot with water and bring to a boil.
  2. Add pasta to the pot and reduce heat, boiling on medium-high for 7 to 9 minutes, or until pasta reaches desired tenderness.
  3. Strain pasta and drain all water from the pot; return pasta to pot, but do not return to burner.
  4. Add olive oil to the pot and mix pasta until coated.
  5. Add pesto sauce and stir until pasta is coated evenly and thoroughly.
  6. Return pot to medium-low heat and add chicken, mushrooms, and red pepper.
  7. Slowly add grated cheese while continuously stirring pasta. Continue stirring until cheese melts completely.
  8. Serve and enjoy!

Serves 4 – 6.


Will Cook For Shoes

Filed under: The Modern Entertainer,The Modern Home — modernwithanem @ 7:02 pm
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If you’re reading this blog, I can only assume that, like myself, you are a modern woman (or modern man, for all of you gents). A domestic diva such as yourself has the right and the privilege to look just as irresistible as everything she cooks (or orders in… Don’t worry, we won’t tell anyone). If you thought aprons were a thing of the past, think again!

Domistyle is THE place to go for cooking attire. Ladies, these are not your grandmother’s aprons! With flattering fits, a wide variety of colour options, modern patterns, and various phrases to emblazon the bib, such as “Caution: Hot Dish”, “Yummy Mummy”, and “Will Cook For Shoes”, Domistyle has cornered the market on this one. Even better, their prices average around $40 per apron, so they won’t break the bank (or infringe upon your emergency shoe fund!). These Canadian women are slowly expanding their product range, and now offer aprons for the wonderful men and children in your life, as well. These are high quality, high fashion, and the perfect compliment to your fabulous culinery masterpieces!


The Taste of Summer

Filed under: The Modern Entertainer,The Modern Home — modernwithanem @ 6:09 pm
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I know that for many of us (myself included), the warm weather will soon be coming to an end. But ever since coming across the following recipe, I wish that summer could last (almost) all year long! This pie is quick, easy, and oh-so-perfect for those warm, cozy summer nights spent with with good friends. Feel free to substitute the black raspberries for red raspberries, or even cherries or blueberries, depending on your preference.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Freeze Time: 4 – 24 hours (but who could resist eating it for a whole 24 hours???)

Bake Time: 5 minutes


1 9-inch graham cracker crumb pie shell (no, it does not need to be homemade!)
1 egg white, beaten
1 cup of whipping cream (NOT whipped cream!)
1 8-ounce package of cream cheese (you can use light cream cheese if you want to feel less guilty)
1 10-ounce jar of black raspberry spread/jam/preserves
Fresh black raspberries, lemon peel twists, and/or mint leaves (these are optional garnishes)


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Brush the pie shell with the beaten egg white.
  3. Bake the pie shell for 5 minutes, and then remove and put on a wire rack to cool.
  4. In a mixing bowl, beat the whipping cream with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until peaks form, and then set aside.
  5. In another mixing bowl, beat the softened cream cheese (you can soften it in the microwave) with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until smooth.
  6. Add the black raspberry spread to the bowl with the cream cheese and mix on low until combined.
  7. Fold the whipped cream into the raspberry-cream cheese bowl using a spatula.
  8. Spoon the mixture into the cooled pie shell.
  9. Cover and freeze for 4 to 24 hours or until firm.
  10. Add your garnishes and serve!

Makes approximately 8 servings.