Fab’s Mom’s Spaghetti Sauce

This is my take on the way that my buddy Fab told me his mom makes spaghetti sauce.  It’s not exact, because his tale had a lot of “she throws in a bunch of sausage and bacon, and about 50 other types of meat.”  Not being of Italian descent myself, my body is not genetically built to convert all of those things into energy and instead stores it in my “troublesome t-zone”, aka “my gut”.

So this version is designed not to kill me.  It’s also designed to be thrown together quickly, and then I just “set it, and forget it”.


  • 1 Can Diced Tomatoes
  • 2 Cans Tomato Paste
  • 2 tbsp Brown Sugar
  • 2 tbsp Italian Seasoning (or you can just season with Oregano, Onion salt, garlic powder and bay leaf)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 whole onion
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 small roast beef (inside round is good)
  • Salt and Pepper to tastse

Combine Diced Tomatoes, Tomato Paste, brown sugar and 1tbsp of italian seasoning in the crock pot.

Heat olive oil, add onion and garlic and brown (which means you only flip once, otherwise you’re poaching them) in oil.

Remove onions and garlic from oil and combine in crock pot.

Rub meat with 1tbsp Italian Seasoning, and salt
Brown meat in remaining oil to sear in juices.

Put meat in crock pot. Turn crock pot to hi until it boils, then reduce to low, and leave simmering for 4 hours.

At the end of the 4 hours, remove the string from the roast, and then stir the sauce.  The meat will begin to dissolve into kind of a stringy sort of meat by-product.

When we ate carbs (which unfortunately are the enemy), we found this goes really well with a rigatoni since the sauce kind of creeps in the spirals and gets all delicious!

Now that we’re anti-carbites, we eat it with Spaghetti Squash.  It’s terribly delicious.


Making the Sausage – My DIG London talk

I’m speaking at DIG 2012, it’s my first formal speaking event, though I have tons of public speaking experience on the radio, TV, as well as live at department meetings, company functions, colleges, and as a panel member at the Banff Interactive Festival.  It’s a 50 minute session too, so I’ve got a lot of time to make good use of.

I thought it might be an interesting exercise to publicize all of my prep, document all of the steps, and see what it looks like.  I have an outline done, and this week I’m starting on the actual narrative.

So this week, here’s my Dig 2012 talk outline – Innovation for Small Teams.  Let me know what you think in the comments.

About Me Our Family

Pnumonia and Kidney Stones – 2012 Starts Now

My little visitor
This is what a stent looks like inside of a bladder.

Until a few weeks ago, 2012 had been a pretty miserable experience for me, but I’m feeling better, and I’m going to take on the world!

Back last year (all the way back to 2011), I had what I thought was a gall bladder attack, and I ended up going to the doctor and getting a ton of tests done, but they all turned up negative, so we just waited it out.  I had a kidney stone attack in November and ended up going to the hospital to get it checked out, but they couldn’t find anything, and I swear it must have passed.

January started out with pneumonia, and a nice little sinus infection.  My pneumonia ended up requiring two different courses of antibiotics, and I was left with a cough that hang around for three months (they call it a 100 day cough).

The week after I was diagnosed with pneumonia, I was in the emergency room at 6am (after suffering through it from 1am until I couldn’t handle the vomiting and agony any more) with the worst kidney stone pain I have had ever had.  By the time I got to the hospital, the pain had vanished, but they took blood, did tests, and the whole bottle of wax (there was definitely blood in my urine), but again they couldn’t see the stupid thing.

Our Family

Five London Years

It’s hard to believe that we moved from Ajax five years ago in March, but it has indeed been five years.

Kaylin was 18 months old when we moved here, half of Maks’ age.  It’s amazing to see pictures of her from back then, she was all curls and crazyness.  Now she’s six years old going on twelve, skinny as a rail and still constantly full of energy.

Now we’ve got a second monkey jumping around the house (quite literally, I constantly hear them thumping around from one room to another).

Our house has grown with the finished basement, but we’re still constantly tripping over toys (today I nearly rolled my ankle on a lightsaber on our stairs).

I’ve made some amazing friends in London, and I get to see my childhood buddies whenever I want.

While I occasionally miss Toronto, and wonder what I’m doing in the alternate universe where we stay in the GTA (maybe we move down to the beach to be closer to my hip downtown job?), I’m pretty ridiculously happy here in London.

About Me Our Family

My Grandma Moo

Grandma Moo
My Grandma Moo

Grandma was born December 3, 1920, but we grand kids wouldn’t get to meet her for another 50 years, until the 1970’s when we all came into the world.

The Muriel Thornton we all got to know was as warm as a fresh out of the oven cookie, caring, kind, and above all else, one of the most good natured souls I’ve ever known.

Sure, she could have a temper, and she could be stubborn as all get out…a trait that thankfully nobody in the family inherited, but by and large, Grandma Moo lived life with a smile on her face.


My Favourite Comics of 2011

The best comics of 2011
The best comics of 2011

I really cut back on comics this year, mostly because I simply don’t have room to store them, so only the best stuff makes its way into my house now. Then something wonderful happened. I got an iPad, and the ComiXology app really came into its own.

This led me to try a lot of new stuff. I’ve always liked indie movies, but I don’t necessarily want to own every one of them! The same with comics, and no surprise for the guy who’s favourite super hero is Starman, I dig some of the more obscure stuff.

Here’s the best stuff I read in 2011: