Thursday, August 22, 2013




"Everybody's got a pebble..."

We need your help! We are crowd-sourcing a video for our anti-bullying song "It Just Takes One." We plan to release the video to coincide with Bullying Awareness Week this November. Each week, we will post a request on our Facebook page to give you an idea of what sorts of images we are looking for --- you can send us your drawings, cartoons, photos and videos to -- we might include it in the video!

Listen to the song on our Bandcamp page, check out the lyrics, and get inspired. We can't wait to see how it all comes together. Let's stand tall together against bullying and encourage kids to be helpful bystanders!

Aug. 22/13 -- Assignment #1 -- We need images of pebbles -- stones -- boulders... What does it mean to have a pebble in your belly? How about a boulder? Send us photos, drawings and videos --some ideas -- kids skipping stones in the water, climbing on big boulders, holding a pebble/stone/big rock in front of their bellies...

Aug. 28/13 -- Assignment #2 -- What does "one outstretched hand" look like to you? We need images and videos of people lending a hand, holding hands, helping someone up, etc...

Sept. 4/13 -- Assignment #3 -- What does it look like to "stand up tall...Be like a tree"? We're looking for your ideas on how people can act brave and tall.

Sept. 12/13 -- Assignment #4 -- We need photos of people holding up a sign that says "Be the One" or "I will be the one" -- or how about a video of your child saying the phrase out loud?

Sept. 18/13 -- Assignment #5 -- "Todd was just a guy, a little different from the others, they all teased him, and called him a fool." Bullies pick on others for any small difference -- what makes you different or special? Send us a photo, drawing or video of how you are unique! This short video was made using Flip Boom animation software and is really easy to use.

Sept. 25/13 -- Assignment #6 -- One of the most powerful things you can do as a helpful bystander is to simply stand beside the person who needs help. This week for Project Pebble we are looking for images of friends standing tall together!

Oct. 2/13 -- Assignment #7 -- Today we are looking for "kind words." Help us make a list! Send us a photo of someone holding a sign with a kind word (or more) on it. What is "one kind word (that) makes us all feel stronger?" 

Monday, September 10, 2012

Picky Eater Challenge -- The YUMMY results!

Congratulations to the five winners of our Picky Eater Challenge! They have each won a copy of GROW and here's our chance to share their delicious tips. Here they are, in no particular order:
  1. Tortellini Soup - recipe submitted by Kira - her suggestion is to slowly introduce one veggie at a time to the broth (we would definitely need to hold off on the spinach, and perhaps blend the veggies right into the broth)
  2. Baked Kale Chips - recipe submitted by Deb - Remove the stems, slice into smaller pieces, toss with olive oil and sea salt, bake in the oven at 350 degrees until crisp, keep an eye on them to get them just right.
  3. Fruit Kebabs with Yogurt Dip - submitted by Anne Marie - Add your child's favourite fruit or let them make it themselves - what kid doesn't like to eat things off a stick?
  4. The Smorgasbord - submitted by Kyla - Veggie and fruit trays, cold cuts, some hot foods, cheeses, breads, crackers, and dips too, for added interest. "If they get to pick what they want, sometimes they'll encourage each other to be brave and try new things."
  5. Delores' Homemade Granola Bars - hand-delivered by Laurie! Your child can choose their favourite ingredients and help to make them - they were a big hit on our canoe trip this summer. Here's the recipe:
  • 3 cups rolled oats
  • 1 cup chopped nuts (we used ground almonds to hide the nuts)
  • 1 cup dried fruit
  •  1 cup sunflower seeds (we used finely shredded coconut)
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/2  cup melted butter
    • Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease a 15 x 10 " pan. Combine ingredients in a large mixing bowl and then press mixture evenly into pan. Bake 25 to 30 min or until golden brown. Let cool and cut into squares.
Thanks so much for your submissions! As for us, we continue to blend/conceal veggies into spaghetti sauces, tacos, soups and pancakes. We also add in hemp seed powder, flax powder, etc... where we can. Smoothies/slushies/milkshakes are also a regular way to increase the fruit intake at our house. Growing our own vegetables and fruits has also been a great way to encourage the kids to eat what they harvest.

Thankfully, our picky eater is growing up, starting to try more new things, and complaining less often. Good luck with yours and Bon Appetit!

Friday, July 6, 2012

Picky Eater Challenge!

Are you a picky eater? Do you have someone in your family that can make mealtime a challenge? My eldest son, who is now 9, is not very adventurous with new tastes and prefers to stick with tried and tested meals--like macaroni and cheese! Fruit and vegetables are a constant negotiation and we try to sneak things in where we can--spaghetti sauce, smoothies, pancakes, soups... But we are running out of ideas! 

Here's an invitation to share your favourite tricks, tips and recipes to appease the pickiest appetite--I'm going to send a copy of my new album, GROW, to the top five suggestions. And yes, we will try them out on our kids and let you know how they work! Please post your tips here, on facebook or by e-mail.

And you can now sample all of my music, lyrics and videos in one place--we've been working hard updating the website and I hope you like it!

Andrew "Too Tall" Queen

Monday, June 6, 2011

Ultimate Block Party

What a beautiful afternoon for all the families that made their way down to Old Fort York in Toronto on Sunday! It was an extra special show for me 'cause my twin brother Doug joined me on stage with Steve Fruitman as well. The sound was great!!

Check out for loads more fun and PLEASE make sure you visit me on Facebook sometime!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Get Growing!

"I'll help you pick the green beans, and even shell the peas,
but please don't put them on my plate, I just want mac and cheese!"

I love this time of year! The air smells so earthy, plants are peeking up from the ground, and I start planning my “best kitchen garden ever.” Each year it gets a little bigger and I learn what works/doesn’t work in my soil. The kids absolutely love to plant and harvest, and we have great farmer friends to lean on for advice and support. Lewis stills talks about his afternoon of “putting carrots into sand” in the fall at Porcupine Creek Farm. Last year I planted asparagus for the first time and several rows of garlic; I can’t wait to see how they do!

A few years ago, I read The Omnivore’s Dilemma, and there was no turning back. I can no longer buy meat from the grocery store, and I am absolutely torn and perplexed every time I go shopping for food in our small town, particularly in the winter. We are committed to buying local food whenever possible, but I’m afraid convenience still sways me towards other food choices. I try to limit my grocery tour to the outer perimeter of the store, but somehow or another, a box of chicken fingers, or granola bars, will sneak its way into my cart.

Part of my dilemma is that our eldest child, Ivan, is an extremely picky eater who will only eat a total of five different fruits and vegetables. He has been raised on macaroni and cheese and is very reluctant to try new foods. I hope that he will absorb some healthy eating habits by osmosis—being part of the growing process, visiting farms and markets, and watching the rest of his family eating and enjoying our greens. Our younger son, Lewis, is quite the opposite and will pretend to be a dinosaur eating a dozen broccoli "trees" or gobble down a pint of berries in twenty minutes.

Real life inspires music, and we invite you to check out a live version of our new song, Good Things Grow. We hope it inspires you to think about the small things you can do in your life to make a difference. We’re nowhere near where we’d like to be in terms of becoming locavores, but we're trying, and each year we change a few habits that improve our family's health and support our local food economy.

We would love to hear about your food journeys and what you're doing to Get Growing!—whether it's planting a garden, visiting farmers’ markets, making jam, tapping your own trees... Please leave your comments or send your stories and photos to . We might use your photo in a video or on a website to share ideas and experiences about food.

A couple of great links to share:

FoodShare Toronto—they have ongoing events and great curriculum in their Field to Table program that is free to use.

100-Mile Diet—check out their Why Eat Local? and find out what your 100 miles looks like with their 100-Mile Mapping Tool.

Small Pond Arts—A community-based arts centre/farm near Picton--they are planning a really cool event, "an artistic exploration of our twisted relationship with food" or "Cornography," on July 24th.

Happy Spring and grow gently,


Thursday, February 24, 2011

I Love Winter!

We love winter at our house! Please enjoy this video of friends and family taking in all the joys of the season in our backyard--every year we celebrate the family traditions of building a "sled run" into the woods and shovelling off the pond for skating.

The music in the video is an instrumental version of "I Love Boating" followed by "Rippling Waters"--both are available on my CD Too Tall. You can download "I Love Boating" for free at the Smartboater website, hosted by the Canadian Safe Boating Council.

I'd love to hear about what other people are doing to have fun this winter--please send your stories to

Happy Winter!

Too Tall

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Our Family's "Playlist"

People often say that our kids are so lucky to have such a musical dad. Truth be told, Ivan (7) and Lewis (4) often say, “Daddy, can you please stop singing that?” They are extremely musical kids and definitely dictate the majority of music choices in our car, as well as when and where Andrew can rehearse. I’d love to share our family’s top picks for music from some really great "kindie" artists. And as a wife/manager of a family act, I can honestly say that all these folks are extremely hard-working, put a lot of effort into their performances, and really love to make great music for kids/everybody (because they're definitely not doing it for the $$$!).

  1. Jon Samson/Cocreative Music—like no kids’ music you’ve heard before, totally fresh and groovy, with a Jeff Buckley-ish voice that makes me swoon… Check out “Nothing Rhymes with Orange” and “The Conductor.”
  2. Charlie Hope—has one of the loveliest/sweetest/ear-pleasin’ voices around… Check out “Train Song” and “I’m Me.”
  3. Ratboy Jr.—just plain likeable and fun--makes me nostalgic for the skateboarding friends from high school… “Never-Melting Snowman” and “Dirt” are family faves.
  4. The Monkey Bunch—they are up for a Juno next month for “Power to the Little People”—the album is an eccentric/eclectic/electric experience from start to finish--highly recommended! We love “Don’t Let Your Cars Idle” and “Poopie Diaper.”
  5. The Funky Mamas—same kind of genre as Andrew’s music, folky/bluegrassy feel with great harmonies, friendliness and joy. They are in the midst of recording their third album—check out “Alligator Romp” and “”Go Bananas!”

Hope you love these bands as much as we do, and help support these artists by going to their shows and buying their CDs! And get your kids listening to great music!


p.s. Andrew will start recording his third album in March! It's all about food and chock full of originals!