Wednesday, November 30, 2011

leave of absence

Hey guys.... It's going to be a bit silent around here until Sunday. I've got some exciting future career related things going on right now so I need to buckle down and get stuff done.

yes, that's chip dip.
Which means less blog & more focus. I could probably use some stress coping advice right now. I've been morphing into this whiney little girl lately. It's embarrassing and needs to stop, like, right now.
What do you do to stay calm? I've been trying to "Breathe in calm, breathe out stress/tension" and it works surprisingly well. It usually nips any anxiety in the bud before it snowballs. And I've been OD'ing on tea. It's so soothing!

Anyway, I hope your week is treating you well. See you soon.

Love & hugs,

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Tasty Tuesdays: Peach Oatmeal Muffins

Guess who got up to some baking on Sunday?

Now, guess how many muffins are left?


Yep. The two of us destroyed eleven muffins in 3 days. Mind you, I ate 3 for breakfast on Sunday. They were pretty delicious. Chewy and soft. Not dense at all. The canned peaches left these little holes so they literally crumble in your mouth.

I also tried these new "environmentally friendly" If You Care cupcake liners from Pete's and I'm in love. The package said that they would work better than normal ones and I thought pfft, yeah right but they actually did. I will definitely buy them again. They're the same price as regular ones, but the muffins peeled off perfectly. Barely a crumb was left on them. Usually with regular liners you get a film left on the liner. Think about all the cupcake you could be eating instead of throwing away! Haha. 

I used this recipe from Dairy Goodness. Ironically, I am lactose-intolerant (what a pretentious-sounding condition) so I subbed unsweetened almond milk for the milk and low-calorie margarine for the butter. And miraculously, everything worked out perfectly. I also used canned peaches, drained as suggested and added a bit less sugar than it called for. The recipe is easy to follow, but be prepared to dirty a few bowls:

Let me know if you try them out!

Also, I've been asked recently by a few people what the difference is between a muffin and a cupcake. What do you think? I go by the general rule that if it's sweeter, it's probably a cupcake. And if there's oatmeal in it, then it's definitely a muffin. But I've had some pretty sweet muffins too... Hmm.

Anyway, thanks for stopping by the blog. I love hearing from you so don't be shy to comment!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Dog Walkin Style: Nov 20

missing button. boo.

The air is starting to get cooler. Trees cling desperately to the few leaves they have left. The wind manages to creep up and under my jacket. The crisp days of Fall have arrived. On Sunday the wind was so strong it was practically rattling our windows. So, what do we do in such weather? Take the dog for a walk. 

These photos were taken immediately after her 30 minute romp with a pup named Tizzy. That's why she looks all kinds of crazy. Gene Simmons tongue for real! What a crazy one.

We started her on clicker training today, so we'll see how that goes. We have a really hard time wrangling her when we let her off leash. She actually wants nothing to do with us when we're outside. Too busy sniffing and exploring. So, we're working on training... kind of. 

For the first few months we had her we just had to smother her with love and it was hard to put our foot down, but now it's time. She's 3 yrs old but it's not too late. It's just going to take a lot of time and patience. And, of course, treats.


So, no makeup, same shirt I wore to bed, eyes all puffed. This shouldn't even be a fashion post, but anywayssss... I'm committed to keepin it real on the blog. I'm wearing:

Jacket: Discount store ($8)
Flannel shirt: Costco, mens
Leggings: Wal-Mart
Boots: Hush Puppies
Scarf: can't remember
Hat: Lady from the St. Lawrence market in Toronto

Thanks for reading lovelies. I'll be back tomorrow night with a scrumptious peach oatmeal muffin recipe. Stop by if you get a chance!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Toronto Eats.

One of my favorite parts about visiting a new (or old) place is eating out & trying a new dish. So in the spirit of my passion for food eating and in case any of you are heading to Toronto, I figured I'd give you a little peek at where and what we ate. 

We went out on a limb with this place, picking the first one listed under Thai in the Where magazine we picked up. As I mentioned, we had a great time here! Good, reasonably priced food and excellent, attentive service. I'm glad we arrived when we did because the place filled up fast. We ended up spending more than we intended to, but it was definitely well worth it. It was the booze that jacked up the bill, not the food. Check it out!

 My drink, the monsoon.

Spring rolls!

Lamb curry with potatoes and coconut rice. Val's mango salad is hanging out in the back there.

Our free dessert. Deep fried bananas!

My first time here. Well-priced, but the place was crazy busy when we went, so the servers seemed a bit confused as to what was going on... They brought me the wrong thing, but said the right thing when placing it in front of me, so I started eating it. Then I realized it wasn't the right thing... and out came my actual meal. Haha. Woops. I chowed down on someone else's pasta. Food was good though!

Meal # 1 "Pasta Primavera"

Meal #2 Actual Pasta Primavera

This place was also crazy-busy. I'm starting to get the impression that most places (or at least the good ones) in Toronto always are. We only waited about 15 mins for a table and our server was prompt, but not intrusive at all. And the food was delish. L & I both had the 'Oy Vegg', potato latkes, eggs and tomato served with fruit. It was a smaller breakfast than I usually order, but filled me up surprisingly well.

The food here was delish. It's a relatively small place with waitstaff who are dressed to the nines in their suits. We went with the buffet so we could try everything and let me tell you everything was super flavorful. Ugh.... take me back, please!

We also drank a ton of coffee this weekend. I dabbled in Starbucks, with some recommendations from our former-barista extraordinaire, Sarah. But my favorite coffee we had was from this little place. And so I leave you with the cutest coffee cup ever.

I'm such a sucker for fresh, interesting packaging! The logo is genius, representing their juice bar & extensive coffee selection. All around pretty.

Thanks for visiting! And for putting up with my gratuitous photos of my trip. Back to normal posting soon!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Weekend Recap: the one with all the first times

weekend shopping list.
I'm back from my 4-day whirlwind tour of Toronto that I mentioned here and it was a blast! It was my second time in Toronto, but it was my first time meeting a drag queen, getting a manicure and eating at PickleBarrel (not picklebottom, as I kept saying). I won't bore you with all the details (that's what my mom, nanny & D are for), but I'll give you the abbreviated version. Gather 'round!

*Come back tomorrow for some juicy food photos of where and what we ate, if you`re interested.


Arrived in TO around 12:30 and made my way via shuttle & subway to the hotel. It definitely looks nicer in the photos but it was huge, clean and bedbug free. What more can you ask for? Val shows up not long after I arrive and we decide to walk around the Eaton centre for a bit before hitting up Golden Thai for supper. Best. Meal. Ever. We were laughing so hard. I think the waiter thought we were lushes after only 2 drinks, but our 'charm' scored us a free dessert. Awww yeah.

Val really liked that statue in the back. Especially his loincloth.

Later on that night we got an invite to meet some of Val's friends at a bar on Church, so off we went. Turns out it was a drag bar. Awesome! Val's friends were sweet and we even got to dance for a bit. Most of the drag ladies were pretty funny and one had nicer lingerie than I did, so the next day I bought 2 bras. Not joking.


We met up with our friend L at the market, but only got to spend a couple hours together before she had to head out. We also picked up Sarah from the bus station! We spent the day drinking Starbucks, shopping and eating. 2 out of 3 of us cried accidentally while sitting on a mall couch. It happens.

When we finally got back to the hotel it was already 10pm. If we wanted to get in to the club for free we had to motor. So we got all dressed up, put some music on and had a couple drinks. I plopped down on the bed just to have a little rest and that was it. My lazy butt was in for the night. So we snuggled and chatted, all dressed up in our party outfits. In my defense, we had been walking around for 12 hours....

We are like 80 yr olds, without the wrinkles. For realz.


Brunch! With 5 girls from Mount Allison. It was so nice to see some familiar faces and find out what everyone is up to now. We said bye to Sarah, shopped some more & then Val and I broke off to go get a manicure (my first one!). I'm really happy with how it turned out. 

Turquoise & Caicos OR Mint Candy Apple by Essie.

That night Val & I did a little of this:

And then we watched Taken on tele and wandered around to find food. Nice little night.


Val & I woke up early-ish, checked out, grabbed breakfast & commuted to her apartment. She had class so I just hung out in the student centre reading a book. I got to meet some of her friends and then flew out an hour late. I finally landed in Halifax at 11:20 and arrived home a bit before midnight. 
Today at work I was pretty exhausted but it was definitely worth it. It's nice to escape to the big city every once in a while. And, since I took a vacation day yesterday... today is another short week!

Also, I know it sounds like all we did is shop and trust me we did a lot. But, I only bought a few things. A handmade beret from the market, some earrings on sale, 2 bras and an unmentionable. See? I was good.

miss you, you crazy!

Anyway, time to cuddle up with D & Abby to watch the new Dexter. Thanks for reading about my adventure!

Did you have any adventures lately?

Sunday, November 6, 2011

42B & friends

Want to meet 2 of the sweetest, most genuine, and downright 'funnest' girls I know?

No? Scroll down a couple posts for some juicy meatball photos.
Yes? Look below for a shot of me & my bff at 18. 5 years ago.

This is Val.

val & i, 2007 (!!)
Val & I were initially matched as roommates for freshman year. However, I had already agreed to room with a girl from my high school whom I know call Sono. Val had called my house to get to know me a bit, so I had to return her call and break the news. I awkwardly mumbled something about forms being mixed up and that was that. Fast forward a few months to Fall semester... Val & I met and were pretty much instant friends. We lived next to each other in residence the following year and together in 'the brothel' (aka. 42B King St.) for 2 years after that. We have a very similar sense of humour & love a lot of the same things. We laugh, dance, eat and vent together. Basically, we're besties.

And this is Sarah.

sarah & I, 2008

Sarah was one of our RAs in first year. I remember her as being the Queen of sweat pants and the cool RA who everyone respected. But I didn't know a lot about her. When we were moving off campus in 3rd year (junior yr), Sarah was looking to move off-campus as well. We needed an extra roommate to get the place we wanted and she seemed relaxed and fun. Done. It turns out that this lady is legit. She keeps a running list of all the books she reads. She makes terribly inappropriate jokes. She's also smart, self-less, smokin' hot AND she's been through some hard shit and came out on top. Basically, she's awesome.

Are you following?

So, we all moved in together in 2008: Sarah, Val, Me & Sono and a boy named Nolan. It was one of the craziest, busiest, most hilariously unpredictable years of my life. I just can't help but think that if we all moved back in together, it would be the exact same.

We would have study                     break dance parties.
We'd keep a large quote board and take it down when parents came to visit. 
There would always be something delicious in the kitchen. And fruitflies.
We would steal and subsequently light a pumpkin on fire.
We'd watch ANTM for 3 hours on Cosmo.
We'd sit on the freezer and have chats.
etc. etc. etc.

please don't kill me for this photo val.

S, SE, me, N

This coming weekend I get to see these two ladies! I'm flying to Toronto, staying with Val for the weekend and Sarah is coming up on Saturday. I'm not really excited yet because I do still have 4 days of work ahead of me, but I am seriously looking forward to seeing them again. I haven't seen Val since August and Sarah since she graduated in 2009 and moved to Australia (whaaa?). This visit is so long overdue. It's going to be a weekend full of shopping, laughs, dancing & a little bit of booze. I'm ready and maybe a little excited...

Thursday, November 3, 2011

painted pumpkin craft

Guess what I did tonight?

Painted a pumpkin! I've never done this before... I've always been a jack-o-lantern kind of girl. I remember seeing a picture of me helping 'carve' one with my parents when I was about 2 years old. They plopped me right inside the hollowed pumpkin for a photo. So, I guess you can say I have years of experience.... Haha.
In university I carved everything from Lion King to Gaga.

2008 (D & my first pumpkin together..... awwwwwww, yuck. cuteness.)


Yhis year's pumpkin was quite a change. It's after Halloween, so it didn't really feel right to carve, so we went with a fall scene with our girl dog Abby playing in the leaves. On our walk today we were talking about how fun it would be if we could rake up some piles and let her play in them, so I guess this was inspired by that. I also didn't have red or brown paint, but I think I made it work. Abs is looking a bit gray. See for yourself:
ignore the pen marks. ugh.

I love it. It is definitely not perfect in any way, but me and D made it together. He's not really into crafts so when he seems excited & uses the word 'cute' a few times... it's awesome. He also called me a "crazy craft lady" which reminded me too much of a crazy cat lady. Clearly, we had fun. 

How was your night? Did you ever paint a pumpkin?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Tasty "Tuesdays": Mom's Meatballs

Sorry this post is going to be a quickie. It's late and I have work in the morning! It's really not a recipe, so you won't see precise measurements... just trust me though. They're hard to screw up. Unless you burn them, so don't wander too far. No one likes a grease fire...

These taste just like the ones mom used to make for us. The soda crackers & the eggs make them so juicy. Perfect for spaghetti & meatballs.

Mom's Meatballs
Serves 4

- lean ground beef (small-med pack)
- 1 egg
- 6-8 soda crackers
- spices of your choice

Preheat oven to 400. 
Mix all ingredients with your hands in a large bowl.
Roll into bite-sized balls.
Place on a cookie sheet & bake for 20 minutes, turning once.  
Blot with a paper towel & enjoy!


That's it! Mix, ball, bake, eat.

Tomorrow's dinner? All done. You're welcome. ;)