Years ago, a friend of mine sought their US citizenship. His family had lived here for decades having moved to Massachusetts from India, but he had been putting off citizenship. After the paperwork, the money exchange and the test, he was ready for the final step. As he was being sworn in the immigration official told him to “cheer up, this is the happiest day in your life”. He didn’t see it that way and I wouldn’t have either.

Since the first summer I stayed in the US in 2002, I have always found this time of year a to be a little difficult for me. Difficult? It’s summer! There are bbqs, picnics, time on the beach, farmer’s markets, how can early July be difficult for you.

My difficulty lies in an allegiance to two countries and their twin holidays: Canada day and Independence day. I feel nostalgic for my native Canada at this time of the year. The people, the values, the vast empty tundra, I idealize it all.

Few people understand that I did not chose to leave Canada, opportunities presented themselves that led me and kept me in the United States. At the same time as I gripe about missing Canada, I love New Hampshire. This state just South of the border has become my home. My spouse is from here, in fact his ancestors helped shape New Hampshire into the state it is today.

Canada and the United States are similar in many ways. But with the twin holidays that spark friendship festivals in border areas, I cannot help but compare and contrast. I love both countries, but my history is in Canada, despite shaping my future in the United States. Perhaps it is why I have yet to seek an American citizenship, my heart is still on the great white north.

So I wanted to post a brilliant recipe today, I wanted to celebrate the country I love, that I grew up in, that at least five generations back were born in. But instead I felt a little contemplative and homesick.  So I present to you a milkshake that helps shake my blues away. A combination of my favorite flavors, raspberries and chocolate.

Vegan chocolate raspberry milkshake

Recipe: Chocolate Raspberry Vegan Milkshake

Summary: Adapted from Almond Butter Milkshake


  • 1 whole frozen banana
  • 1/2 cup frozen raspberries
  • 2 tsp raw almond butter
  • 2 tsp cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp cocoa nibs
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup almond milk


  1. Place ingredients in a blender, blend until smooth.

Preparation time: 5 minute(s)

Diet type: Vegan

Number of servings (yield): 1

Vegan chocolate raspberry milkshake

Like it’s predecessor, the almond butter milkshake, this drink is way too rich and creamy to be called a smoothie.

Vegan chocolate raspberry milkshake

Despite a strong chocolate flavor the milkshake retained the pink from the raspberries blended in.

Vegan chocolate raspberry milkshake

A perfect treat for breakfast, lunch or unwinding at the end of the day.

Vegan chocolate raspberry milkshake

Garnish with cocoa nibs and a raspberry and you are good to go.

Maybe I will come up with something more Canada Day tonight.  In the meantime I’ll be heading off to work thinking of the friendship festival happening a couple states away between Buffalo NY, and Fort Erie, Ontario.

What are your plans for Canada Day/Independence day weekend?

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4 Responses to Canada Day Makes me Nostalgic

  1. shannonmarie says:

    The color of that smoothie is gorgeous!

  2. The milkshake looks fantastic! The raspberries make it such a pretty color. And of course anything tasting like chocolate is good in my book. I hope you have a great time this weekend. My only plan is see some fireworks.

  3. Allie says:

    I’m sorry you’re feeling homesick, but I feel that smoothie could cure just about anything :) I say go ahead and celebrate Canada Day in the U.S., and pretend for a little bit. I have no 4th of July plans, but should probably come up with something…

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