Courtesy of Dan Vermette


Courtesy of

INGREDIENTS: 1.5 lbs sweet potatoes 2 Tbsp. olive oil (plus more for cooking) ½ c. rolled oats 1 c. cooked quinoa (1/3 cup uncooked) 1 can (150 oz) black beans, rinsed and drained 2 Tbsp. green onions, chopped 1 tsp. garlic powder ¼ tsp. smoked paprika 1 tsp. salt, divided 1 tsp. pepper, divided

DIRECTIONS: 1. Peel and chop sweet potatoes, then add to a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until very tender. 2. Move sweet potatoes and baking sheet oil to a large bowl. Mash until well pulverized. 3. Process oats in a food processor until crumbs and add to sweet potato bowl. 4. Add remaining ingredients to the bowl and stir until well combined. 5. Get your hands wet with warm water and form 6 patties about an inch thick. 6. Add a thin layer of oil to the bottom of a sauté pan and allow to heat over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the patties, cooking until browned on the underside before flipping. Add more oil as needed, not allowing the pan to become dry. 7. Place on buns and add your favourite toppings. Serve and enjoy!

BESTECO-FRIENDLYGIFTSFOR TODDLERS Got a toddler in your life? Then you know how much they love to play! Make sure they’re playing with something natural and eco- friendly by choosing gifts similar to these three green and clean toys. 1. Extra Large Wooden Rainbow by Grimm. Colourful, stackable and oversized equals tons of fun. Plus, this toy is handmade and cut from a single piece of solid linden wood. 2. Pound and Tap Bench with Slide-Out Xylophone by Hape. Kids are proof that humans are born loving music. And dropping and bopping things is pretty fun too! Also made from solid wood, this small unit won’t take up a lot of space, but it will provide hours of enjoyment. 3. My First Orchard by Haba. A board game designed for two year olds, with large pieces for small hands. Parents will also like that it’s a cooperative game rather than one with a winner or loser. Made from beech wood and painted with a non-toxic stain.

QUOTE “What good is the warmth of summer, without the cold of winter to give it sweetness.” John Steinbeck (John Ernst Steinbeck Jr. was an American writer born in 1902. His most famous novels include classics Of Mice and Men and The Grapes of Wrath . In 1962 he won the Nobel Prize in Literaure and was praised for his realistic, yet imaginative writings. He died in 1968 in New York.)

PROTECTYOURSELFDURINGTHE HOME-BUYINGPROCESS Purchasing a home should be a joyful experience. Yet, too often buyers hit an unforeseen snag that costs them time, money and maybe even the house of their dreams. But there are a few things you can do both before and during the search that will lessen the chances of things going sideways. First, surround yourself with professionals you trust. From your real estate agent, to your mortgage broker, to your building inspector – these are all people you can turn to when you have questions and concerns. If you have a solid relationship, then you’ll feel confident the advice they give you has your best interests in mind. The second thing you can do to help deter problems is to know what you can afford and stick to it. Don’t get caught up in a bidding war and make an offer you didn’t budget for. Also, make sure you know your mortgage lender’s terms. Making an offer on a home when you only have a 5 per cent down payment if your lender requires 15 per cent will quickly put an end to things. Most importantly, trust your instincts and your trusted real estate professional.

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