Courtesy of The Charron Real Estate Team

WINTER SQUASH SOUP

INGREDIENTS 2 lbs butternut or other seasonal squash, peeled, seeds removed and cubed 4 Tbs olive oil ½ cup cider vinegar 1 Tbs sugar 1 medium onion, chopped 2 stalks celery, chopped 1 medium carrot, chopped 2 apples, core removed and chopped 3 tsp ground ginger ½ tsp cinnamon ¼ tsp five spice powder ¼ tsp (scant) ground nutmeg 2-32 oz containers vegetable stock Kosher Sea Salt Fresh ground pepper Crusty Bread- toasted for serving

DIRECTIONS 1. Preheat oven to 425˚F. Line two rimmed baking sheets with parchment. 2. Combine cider vinegar, sugar and a pinch of salt in a small sauce pan and simmer until reduced by half. Set aside. 3. Toss cubed squash with 2 Tbs olive oil, spread on the prepared baking sheets, season with salt and pepper and roast until edges are caramelized, about 30 minutes. 4. While squash is roasting, preheat a heavy bottomed pot over medium heat. Adjust to medium low and add 2 Tbs olive oil and onion. Sauté and allow onion to “melt” over low heat, about 5-8 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add spices and stir to coat. Add carrot and celery, raise heat to medium and sauté until sweating, then add apple and cook until fragrant and slightly tender. 5. Add squash to pot, stir to combine and add vegetable stock. Bring to a simmer. 6. Working in batches, purée mixture in a blender until creamy and smooth. Be careful while blending hot ingredients. 7. Return soup to pot and bring to a simmer. Add cider vinegar reduction, stir to combine. Adjust salt and pepper to suit taste. Serve and enjoy!

Courtesy of Feedtheswimmers.com

ONE KIND WORD CAN WARM THREE WINTER MONTHS. - Japanese Proverb

When you’re thinking of how long winter seems to be, remember this Japanese Proverb and share some kindness with a friend, loved one, neighbour or stranger. It won’t cost you anything and will make both you and the recipient feel warm.

WINTER SAFETY DRIVING TIPS Canadians often joke about driving in the winter and how they can do it in their sleep, so to speak. However, if you're new to driving or new to driving in snow and poor road conditions due to a recent move, there are some pretty basic do's and don'ts to follow to make your winter trips safer and less stressful. First, before even getting in the vehicle, use the facilities, pack a snack and water and ensure your winter safety kit is stocked and accessible. Ideally, you'll have winter tires on your vehicle as well because they are made to keep their elasticity and grip at low temperatures which means more traction for you. Also be sure to brush, or scrape, off any snow or ice that has accumulated on your vehicle. It will not only allow you to see better, but also prevent snow from disturbing the drivers around you as it blows off your moving vehicle. Once on the roads, you generally want to give yourself more space between the vehicle in front of you so you have more room to stop, but also to react if someone in the next lane skids or loses traction on a patch of ice, for instance. Avoiding sudden braking and turning to help prevent yourself from skidding on snow or ice and definitely adjust your speed to the road conditions. If you stay with the flow of traffic by not going too fast or too slow, you should be safe. Finally, experts say to avoid using cruise control in poor road conditions and to be cautious when relying on other driver assistance technologies (such as lane keeping assistance and blind spot warning) as they may not function properly or accurately with precipitation falling. Review your vehicle’s owner’s manual for instructions on these technologies as well as Electronic Braking Control (standard on vehicles made since 2012.)

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