Pancake Tuesday and the Snow Picnic Maple Syrup Adventure…

As you know today is Pancake or Shrove Tuesday.

I didn’t have time to get a new post written due to some deadlines in the studio but I thought you might enjoy a little re-read of our Snow Picnic post from last year.

It involves a funny maple syrup adventure and of course pancakes!…

Reading over it myself just now I got a bit teary… we still had our Coco back then and seeing her in the photos was nostalgic. Luckily our wiener dog Emmitt is still full of life and we have a new family member… our son Spencer got a dog named Tara. She is beautiful, frisky and so strong!!

Last week  Kent did tap the tree during one sunny day but the yield was small…

I am hoping the next thaw will bring a better result… our stock is getting low!!

Now… on with the tale… Grab a pancake and enjoy!!

       We decided to have a snow picnic this weekend… 



I am getting ahead of myself.

I need to give you the back story to get you up to speed…


Tapping our big maple tree is a tradition here at Hoop Top House.

It is a sure sign that spring is right around the corner when Kent starts talking about it.

I love this seasonal shift…everything is waking up, the sun feels a bit warmer and the days a little longer…

Last year we had a sap thief in the form of a crafty squirrel…


the sap theif!


I know the photo is terrible, but it was hard to catch him in the act…  I was so excited to see him when I had the camera close to hand that I couldn’t get a good shot.


Kent was determined this year to out fox the fox so to speak and to this end he developed a new system.


collecting sap in bucket


Last years bucket was out


collecting sap with pipeline


and in its place…

Drum roll please!

The new pipeline system with lockdown cover.

Take that Mr. Squirrel!


boiling sap


Our first batch of the season was ready to be boiled down Friday night.

We got about half a litre… I know it isn’t much but remember, sap to syrup is a 40-1 ratio.

I am hoping we will end up with a few litres more.


maple surup


So wonderful…


maple syrup dripping off spoon


To celebrate our bountiful harvest we decided to have a snow picnic.

It was a spur of the moment thing…. we looked out the windows at that beautiful sunshine and decided it would be fun.


eating brunch in the snow


We set up down in the flats behind the house.


outdoor brunch


A fire for extra warmth…


snow picnic on live edge serving board


Looks good don’t you think?

I used one of Kents serving boards.

Give a click if you are interested in seeing the post on how he makes them.


Emmitt at the snowpicnic


Emmitt was hoping for a taste…






What could be better:

Hot pancakes rolled around baked sausage dipped in maple syrup made from the tree you are sitting beside in the snow.

Be still my heart!



Even the chicken wanted in on it!

We had a great morning enjoying that beautiful sunshine.


lighthouse in the snow


The second tree we tap is on the other side of the backyard… can you spot it to the left of the lighthouse?

So far we haven’t seen any squirrel sap stalking going on.

But we may have another problem…

Is there a second string sap thief at Hoop Top House?!?


Emmitt the sap theif...


I hope you had a fabulous weekend filled with delightful unexpected moments of pleasure!


  1. Susan M. says:

    There is absolutely nothing so good as fresh maple syrup! Your post brings me back to my childhood in northern Michigan when all the maple trees were dressed with spigots and buckets. While we hated being in charge of finding and carrying the firewood needed to keep the fire going, enjoying the resultant “liquid gold” with pancakes was reward enough. YUM!

    Thanks for the trip down memory lane!

    • Cynthia says:

      Hi Susan,
      I loved reading about your childhood maple syrup memories, they sound idyllic! Thank you so much for sharing.

  2. I missed this post last year and am so glad you put it up again. What a fun idea to have a snow picnic! And I loved the squirrel thief. Sorry your Coco isn’t here anymore but glad Emmitt is good and can’t wait to see Tara.
    I will be making pancakes for supper but our syrup will be store bought I am afraid.

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