Flaunting: Baking Up Treble & Ginger’s Cupcakes and Desserts


Writer: Teresa Madaleno

Cake by: Baking Up Treble

When I have the time, I love to bake but let’s face it, life can be hectic and time is something that is limited. Thankfully, there are young, energetic, talented people out there who are dedicated to providing high-quality baked goods.

It just so happens that I know of two such individuals. Alexandra, who is the epitome of creative, owns and operates Baking Up Treble in Newmarket, Ontario. Her delicious custom cakes and designer cookies have been featured in wedding and lifestyle magazines. Yes, all of her picture-perfect baked goods do taste as good as they look. Alexandra treats every order and every customer with special care. If you go to the preferred vendor’s section of the Baking Up Treble website, right under the heading Maranda Elysse Photography, you’ll see Alexandra and her supportive husband Randal on their wedding day. I have to say that Alexandra’s cakes are to die for.


In Aurora, another young woman has made her mark as a master baker. Amanda runs Ginger’s Cupcakes and Desserts. There is another Ginger’s location in nearby Richmond Hill. This young entrepreneur provides everything from small desserts to 4 tier wedding cakes. Amanda follows a small batch policy because she values quality over quantity. Amanda and her staff are very accommodating. They offer nut free desserts, as well as gluten-free products. If you have a chance, you must check out Ginger’s hand pies. I have never had anything like the spinach/artichoke/cream cheese.



Kickboxing: A Different Kind of Workout


Writer: Teresa Madaleno

It is becoming a popular form of exercise for a number of reasons – it doesn’t require heavy investment in equipment and you can pick the routine up at any time. I am referring to kickboxing. Once a man’s sport, more and more women are now enjoying it and here’s why:

  • Helps you break a sweat within minutes
  • Promotes weight loss
  • Helps you develop lean body
  • Great stress reliever
  • Increases confidence and self-esteem
  • Great for self-defence
  • Good for the heart

Aside from these health benefits, anyone who has ever taken a kickboxing class will tell you that it is a whole lot of “fun”.

One of the nicest parts of kickboxing is that you don’t have to be an athlete to enjoy it. People from all walks of life and from all fitness levels take part in this form of exercise. Most kickboxing studios have beginner up to advanced classes. Some places offer one on one lesson.

Kickboxing has its origins in the 2,000-year-old discipline of Muay Tai fighting. It was initially developed as a self-defence tool, but slowly developed into a sport when unarmed combat in warfare became less effective. Today kickboxing is the national sport of Thailand.

Sara Madaleno is a kickboxing instructor and my niece. Sara spent several years as a competitive athlete, specifically in the sports of hockey and soccer. With a degree in psychology and sports studies, as well as a diploma in pre-health sciences, Sara combines her knowledge of human behaviour and her love for fitness to help students at “ilovekickboxing” in Vaughan, Ontario gain confidence in themselves and learn fun, invigorating kickboxing moves. Who can participate in kickboxing? Well, both men and women of all ages. At ilovekickboxing clients range from 13 to 70 years old.

“For some people it is not just about burning hundreds of calories- it’s mentally transformational,” Sara has said.

If you are interested in having a lot of fun, toning those muscles or shedding some pounds, Sara tells me that ilovekickboxing is always offering specials. So take some time to check them out.



Fynn & Wylder – Baby Inspired Clothing and Accessories

Contributing Writer: Keelin Mayer

When the grand opening of an ethically-made baby and kids clothing store includes delicious cup cakes, warm apple cider and the welcoming smiles of the business owner herself, you can bet that I’ll be there!

I was introduced to Fynn & Wylder (previously “Baby Inspired”), by a friend who is a big supporter of the brand. Stylish, comfy and super easy to keep clean, the clothes are an adorable option for parents looking to dress their children in locally made, high quality items. Originally an online business, owner Kelly Hubble has transformed a corner of her home into a store front and now welcomes customers Thursday and Friday afternoon/evening and Saturday 10am-4pm. She also continues to maintain an active Facebook page where customers can preview in stock items and place custom orders.

Located just south of Madoc, Ontario on hwy. 14, the store itself is decorated in a rustic, country-eclectic theme. A one of a kind reclaimed wood arrow displays pairs of fun pleather pants and traditional red plaid hoodies are hung on iron deer antler wall hangers.

While Hubble offers a variety of unique items, including reversible fleece car seat ponchos, bandana bibs, headbands, overalls and harem pants, I was immediately drawn to the pompom slouchie beanies (hats). Available in fabrics sporting everything from flowers to deer heads with antlers to basic stripes, the pompom slouchie beanies are a functional item; perfect for the fall and upcoming winter, while being totally funky and a perfect compliment to any outfit. I couldn’t help myself and bought one for each of my boys, as well as a few for Christmas gifts.

I love supporting local, independent businesses and am thrilled that I have found Fynn & Wylder. I plan to place a few custom orders for harem pants and have shared my new discovery with friends all over the country (Kelly ships anywhere!) Check her out at www.facebook.com/fynnandwylder/


Contributing Writer, Keelin Mayer is passionate about writing, yummy food and nature. She spends her free time exploring forests and mud puddles with her husband and two young sons.

Stopping to Smell the Lavender

Madaleno Magazine Guest Contributor: Keelin Mayer


I find the smell of lavender intoxicating. Subtle yet distinct, I use lavender essential oil for relaxation and enjoy the delicious plant in a refreshing cup of lemonade on hot summer days.

My love for lavender and all things derived from it made my discovery of Prince Edward County Lavender very exciting. Nestled in Hillier, Ontario the owners Rolande and Derek have built an inviting and picturesque oasis that offers visitors a boutique, accessible lavender fields and a charming and comfortable B&B.

From teas and soaps to t-shirts, the Prince Edward County Lavender boutique has something for everyone. Visitors can’t help but walk through the store slowly, smelling and touching products as they go. Access to the fields is available through the store. A moderate two-dollar charge is required for all those wishing to explore the fields, and it is well worth it. Row upon row of purple and white flowers’ invite visitors to stop to inhale the subtle smell and gently caress the fragile flowers.

By happenstance I stumbled upon the farm on a Saturday afternoon in July when Roger Scannura, a Flamenco Guitarist/Composer was serenading guests as they wandered through the fields. My family and I relaxed in the brightly coloured Adirondack chairs scattered throughout the field, while the tranquil melody wafted across the aromatic-air and plump bumblebees flew from one flower to the next. It was a perfect way to spend a lazy summer afternoon.

After returning home, I looked up the company’s website and Facebook page and discovered that the farm hosts an annual Lavender Festival. Running two days in early July, guests are able to enjoy live entertainment, local food, live music and of course, an array of lavender products. I have already made a note on my calendar for next summer!

More information on Prince Edward County Lavender can be found on their website, https://www.peclavender.com or Facebook page.

Contributing Writer, Keelin Mayer is passionate about writing, yummy food and nature. She spends her free time exploring forests and mud puddles with her husband and two young sons.

The Little Tart



Madaleno Magazine Guest Contributor: Keelin Mayer

The first time I walked into The Little Tart I felt at home in the space. The bakery was a general store in a previous life, and I could still picture the shelves holding grocery store bread and bags of chips. These items had been replaced with original works of art, humourous food labels and upbeat music, making the room feel unique and inviting.

When I turned my attention to the display case in front of me I stopped dead in my tracks. Before me lay a wide variety of home made delicious looking tarts, cookies and squares. Yum!

I am a sucker for home baking. And I don’t mean the ‘home baking’ of a large corporate company that claims to be “family owned and operated”. What I mean is the home baking that uses great-grandma’s cookie recipe – a secret shared with a select few each generation. Or the lemon meringue pie with peaks so perfect you hesitate eating them because you feel that you are eating works of art.

I purchased my first delicious lemon tart from the shop owner himself. Bill is an easy going, tie-die wearing man who will patiently stand by and watch as you wrestle with yourself, trying to figure out which tart you’re going to indulge in today.

If you have a cottage in the Haliburton area and have not ventured to The Little Tart shop I encourage you to plan a trip there soon. Bill and Theresa work tirelessly during cottage season to stock the shop with their home baking. Be sure to get there early; they tend to sell out!

The Little Tart is located just outside of Haliburton, in Donald, Ontario. Find them on Facebook or visit their blog, http://thelittletartbakery.blogspot.ca

Contributing Writer, Keelin Mayer is passionate about writing, yummy food and nature. She spends her free time exploring forests and mud puddles with her husband and two young sons.