• Stay Caffeinated With These Fall Drinks

    Sep 11, 2017

    Chilly fall days are all about cozy sweaters and warm drinks. When you don’t have time to curl up under a blanket, Timbercreek Communities wants to help you stay caffeinated with these fall drinks.

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    Salted Caramel Latte

    Get all the flavour you’re craving with this Salted Caramel Latte without all the hidden calories that may come with your order at a local coffee shop. It’s easy to make in minutes. Heat milk, caramel sauce and sea salt in a pan. Pour your favourite brewed coffee into a mug. Use an immersion (hand) blender on low to froth your warm milk before topping your coffee with it. Drizzle the foam with more caramel sauce.

    Pumpkin Spice Latte

    The ubiquitous Pumpkin Spice Latte pops up all over the place at this time of year. Avoid the lines and mystery ingredients and whip one up yourself. Whisk together pumpkin purée, with pumpkin pie spice, milk, maple syrup and vanilla extract over medium heat. Blend the warm mixture until frothy. Pour brewed coffee into mugs and add the pumpkin/milk mixture and top with foam.

    Vegan Hot Chocolate

    Even if you’re off animal products, you can still enjoy a rich, Vegan Hot Chocolate with very minimal effort. Cocoa powder and chocolate contain lower levels of caffeine than coffee. Heat almond or rice milk in a saucepan or microwave. Add cocoa powder, chocolate and your favourite sweetener and whisk to combine them. Top with coconut whipped cream if desired.

    Dirty Chai Latte

    Chai is Indian black tea. What makes this latte “dirty” is a shot of espresso. This homemade Dirty Chai Latte is for those mornings where you need an extra kick. Steep a chai tea bag in boiling water, then add coffee or espresso to the mug. Shake up the milk in a sealed mason jar until it gets frothy, then remove the lid and microwave for about 30 seconds before adding it to the mug. Scoop the foam onto the top of your beverage and maybe add a bit of cinnamon.

    Matcha Latte

    If you’re looking for a change to your morning coffee routine, this Matcha Latte (powdered green tea) may be just what you’re looking for. Simmer milk or milk alternative (soy, rice, almond etc.) over medium heat. Add matcha powder to a mug and then add the heated milk and sweeten to taste.

    Timbercreek hopes these fall drinks help you stay warm and active this season! To find your home in one of Timbercreek’s Communities across Canada, please visit our website.

  • School Supplies You Need For University And Where To Get Them

    Sep 07, 2017

    Back to school time is a mixed bag. It’s time to get back to the grind, but also time to see school friends and learn new things. If you want to be truly prepared for university you need the right school supplies. To help you make the right choices, Timbercreek brings you this list of what you need, and where to get it.

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    Laptop

    A laptop is pretty much essential for university. And depending on what kind of person you are (mac or pc) a new laptop is obtainable in a variety of ways. In-store: from the Apple store to Best Buy, Costco, university bookstores and mom and pop computer shops, you can find pretty much everything. Plus there’s the advantage of seeing what you’re buying, and talking to an actual human about the product. Online: from Amazon to the Apple store, Best Buy and more, pretty much everything in a store is available online - and with the advantage of having it delivered to your home. Used: from Craigslist to Kijiji and authorized Apple resellers, great deals can be found on used laptops. Be sure to do your due-diligence, but used machines can often save you half the price of a new one.

    Backpack

    From designer bags to walmart no-name brands, backpacks and rucksacks are everywhere. The trick is finding that unicorn mix of affordability and quality. But don’t think too hard - one of the best and easiest options is scrolling through the stock of Mountain Equipment Co-op. Durable, affordable, and available in a variety of models and price points, it’s a Canadian-made option that doesn’t disappoint.

    Notebooks

    There are a few things the dollar store really nails: one of them is school supplies. While you won’t necessarily get the best pens on the planet, their notebooks are great.They’ve got different colors, sizes, line widths, dividers, no dividers, holes for integration with binders - they’re hard to beat. And they’re cheap.

    Pens, pencils, highlighters

    There’s a whole lot you can get for cheap at the dollar store. But other excellent options include Canadian Tire, art supply stores like Currys, Deserres, as well as long time office supply giant, Staples.

    Printer

    Common office supply stores and online shopping hubs generally stock the largest supply of printers and printer gear (Staples, The Source, Best Buy, Amazon, etc.), but they can also be found at university bookstores and small computer shops. The main point to consider with printers is the cost-use ratio. While cheap up front, standard ink/bubble jet printers have a lifespan of a year if you’re lucky, and laser versions are pricey, while ink and maintenance for all is a costly pain. A lot of times using a local print shop, Kinkos, or the university bookstore is cheaper and more convenient in the long run.

    Timbercreek hopes this list of school supplies and where to get them helps you find what you need for university this year. For more information about Timbercreek Communities in your city, please visit our website.

  • Make Your Own: DIY Frappuccinos

    Aug 22, 2017

    Who doesn’t love a Starbucks frappuccino? They’re totally addictive! They’re also totally expensive and a frappuccino habit can add up quickly. Save your wallet and make them at home! With some coffee and a bit of DIY ingenuity, Timbercreek will show you how to whip up your own frappucinos with ease.

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    Caramel Frappuccino

    With a blender, ice cubes, coffee, milk, and some caramel sauce, you can whip up a pretty convincing caramel frappucino. Toss a cup of ice cubes, 2 shots of espresso, a half cup of milk, a tablespoon of caramel sauce and 3 tbsp of caramel syrup into a blender and pulse for 30 seconds or to taste. Once done, serve, and garnish with whipped cream and drizzle with more caramel sauce. A great addition that will help thicken the drink is xanthan gum. Never heard of it? It’s a mix of fermented glucose and sucrose that is used widely as a thickening agent. It’s available at most healthfood stores.

    Smores Frappuccino

    To make a frappuccino that will bring back sweet summer camp memories, try this Smores Frappuccino recipe. As with all Frappuccino drinks, brew up a couple shots of espresso, or a strong cup of drip coffee and let cool. Have ice cubes on hand, as well as a 1/2 cup of whipping cream, 1/2 a cup of fluff, and 1/2 to 1 teaspoon sugar graham crackers, and some milk of your choice. Whip the cream until you get soft peaks, add the fluff and continue whipping until you get hard peaks, add sugar, and put in the fridge until ready. Crush graham crackers (1-2 per frappuccino or to taste), then assemble. Use the blender method described above or pour coffee over ice and top with fluff/whipped cream garnish.

    Unicorn Frappuccino

    While difficult to make DIY style, Stabucks’ rarefied and mythical unicorn frappucinos are doable at home. Brew your coffee, let cool, and have ice cubes in the freezer, as well as a cup of milk, ¼ cup heavy cream, and 2 tbsp mango syrup. For the Blue Drizzle Sauce, blend ½ cup white chocolate morsels, 2 tablespoons blue raspberry sour powder topping or crushed up Warhead candies, and 2 tablespoons of milk. Blend all ingredients, drizzle blue sauce down the sides of your frappuccino cup, add blended coffee, and top with whipped cream and sour powder. It’s tough to get this one exact, but there’s lots of room for creativity and it will taste great no matter what.

    Strawberries and Cream Frappuccino

    This one is pretty straightforward. Start with a base of coffee, ice, and milk. To this add ¼ cup of vanilla ice cream, 2 strawberries (per frappuccino), 2 tbsp strawberry syrup, and if desired, ⅛ tsp xanthan gum for thickener. Blend your ingredients, top with whipped cream, and voila, you’ve got a delicious Strawberries and Cream Frappuccino.

    With the basic frappuccino recipe, and your choice of other flavours like mocha, vanilla, green tea, or cinnamon dolce, amazing DIY frappuccinos are possible. Timbercreek hopes this list helps you save big without sacrificing your favourite drinks! For more information about Timbercreek Communities in your city, please visit our website.

  • Canadian Brands We Love

    Aug 21, 2017

    Canadian style is not just flannels and parkas (not that there’s anything wrong with those). We’re pretty chic, despite the stereotypes. Timbercreek wants to help you show your national pride, and look good doing it, with some Canadian brands we love.

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    Peace Collective

    Peace Collective has a flagship store for their clothing brand on Ossington Avenue in Toronto. Known mostly for their minimalist black and white graphic tees, they are an offshoot of the Peace Foundation.

    East Coast Lifestyle

    East Coast Lifestyle is about being proud of where you’re from. They give people the opportunity to wear their East Coast heart on their sleeve.  Created in 2013 as an undergrad venture-creation class at Acadia University, the brand has moved into the real world in a real way.

    Lululemon

    Since its inception in 1998 (by the now infamous Chip Wilson) Lululemon has seen exponential growth. The athletic apparel company best known for their amazing leggings (and perhaps second best known for its strange and sordid history) has legions of loyal customers. Their flagship store is located on Robson Street in Vancouver.

    Hudson’s Bay Company

    The history of the Hudson’s Bay Company dates back to 1670! It is the oldest incorporated merchandising company in the English-speaking world. Today, HBC is a premium brand and retailer with a flagship store at 160 Yonge Street in Toronto and retail locations across the country.

    Herschel Supply Co.

    Named after the founder’s grandparents hometown of Herschel, Saskatchewan, The Herschel Supply Co. was established in 2009 and is based in Vancouver B.C. Today they are one of the most popular accessory brands in the country.

    Livestock

    Livestock first opened its doors in Vancouver’s Gastown neighbourhood in 2004. It began as a popular footwear store. With four brick and mortar locations from Toronto to Vancouver, it has become one of Canada’s top apparel and footwear destinations.

    Roots

    The Roots beaver logo is as Canadian as it gets. The company has designed and produced high quality clothing and accessories in Toronto since first opening their doors in 1973. Their stores can now be found in most major cities across the country, including Roots Central in The Eaton Centre.

    Sorel

    Now headquartered in London, Ontario, Sorel was originally headquartered in Quebec and made in Canada. Founded by the Kaufman Rubber Company in 1962 they have become a staple brand of quality footwear for Canadians.

    MEC

    Canada’s largest supplier of outdoor equipment, MEC, has 16 stores across the country. They originally catered only to mountaineers but have since broadened their appeal to include outdoor enthusiasts of all kinds. Their original store is on Broadway Street in Vancouver, B.C.

    Timbercreek hopes that these brands help you show off your Canadian style. To find your home in one of Timbercreek’s Communities across Canada, please visit our website.

  • Boneless Chicken Recipes

    Aug 14, 2017

    No bones about it; chicken is a healthy meal choice. It can get a bit dry and dull, so Timbercreek Communities wants to share some ways to do it right. Enjoy one of these Boneless Chicken Recipes tonight!

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    1. Baked Lemon Chicken

      Say goodbye to dull, dry chicken breasts and say hello to Baked Lemon Chicken. Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat and add chicken. Cook until browned (about 2 to 3 minutes per side). Place the browned chicken on a baking sheet and whisk chicken broth together with lemon juice, honey, garlic and Italian seasoning. Pour this mixture over the chicken and bake for 20 to 30 minutes.

    2. Super Simple Jerk Chicken

      Keep things simple, spicy and delicious with this Super Simple Jerk Chicken recipe. Prepare the rub by combining spices in a bowl with canola oil and brown sugar. Transfer spice-rubbed chicken breasts to a hot skillet or grill and cook for about 4 to 6 minutes per side. Let the cooked chicken sit for few minutes to let the juices soak in before serving.

    3. Sweet and Spicy Baked Chicken

      You and your family will love this Sweet and Spicy Baked Chicken recipe. The sweet and spicy glaze is made by whisking together water, brown sugar, and apple cider vinegar with your favourite hot sauce, minced garlic and a little salt. While the sauce is boiling, brown the chicken in a skillet then place it on a greased baking sheet and brush on the flavourful sauce. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes and pour the rest of the sauce on the hot chicken.

    4. Grilled Honey Mustard Chicken Skewers

      These Grilled Honey Mustard Chicken Skewers are made with a simple 3-ingredient marinade of honey, mustard and minced garlic - plus a little salt and pepper. Marinate the chicken in the fridge for at least 2 hours, or even overnight. Soak the wooden skewers beforehand to prevent splintering or burning.

    5. Sticky Garlic Chicken Bites
      Try these Sticky Garlic Chicken Bites for bite-sized bits of panko-breaded bliss!  Prepare the chicken by dipping it first into a bowl of 2 beaten eggs and then pressing them into the panko crumbs. Bake on a greased pan until crisp (about 20 minutes). Prepare the sauce by heating honey, garlic, soy sauce, ginger and Sriracha in a saucepan over medium heat, until it thickens. Gently toss cooked chicken in the sauce.

    Timbercreek hopes that these boneless chicken recipes help liven up your evening. To find your home with Timbercreek Communities across Canada, visit our website.

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