I Like To Overdo It

So I booked a trip to Paris. Thought about it a little, then overanalyzed it as I tend to do, but somehow brought myself to make a decision. I figured a few nights near the Eiffel Tower couldn't do any harm. My french however, or lack there of, may get me into trouble.

I have plenty of time to brush up on (or learn) the language, so quite frankly that can wait. First things first. I must train my stomach.

I like to think I've got a little Betty Crocker in me. As a kid, my nut allergy meant that sometimes we had to bring out the cake mix for school occasions and such, but that was fine by me. (Shamefully, I've actually grown to like the batter just as much as the finished product!) That love of baking has stayed with me, and a subscription to FOOD magazine and countless Food Network episodes later, I now feel the need to embark on the finer world of food.

Who better to learn from than Ina Garten? Not only is she the kindest chef on the Food Network, everything she makes has me drooling. So when I found out she had an acclaimed cookbook from her time spent in Paris, I couldn't resist.

Don't these cheese puffs look delicious? All of the recipes in this cookbook look incredible and I'm so excited to try them. Expect reviews on my favourites (seems like the thing to do in blogging lately...). Happy cooking!


"Excellence is a combination of passion and focus. When you have passion for what you are doing and get your focus in the right place, everything else will follow. Embrace the moment."
- Terry Orlick
Two of my favourites - black and white photography (of Paris, none the less) and some words to follow.


Great Design is Good for the Soul

It sounds crazy, but it must be true? There is certainly something beyond our love of shopping and trends that drives us to create the home of our dreams. It's an expression of individuality, how we live and what's important to us.

When I came across this modern Southern Californian home, I instantly felt relaxed and inspired - qualities that rank high on my list of "great design". This European-inspired space has used layers of neutral colours and natural materials to create a soothing home. After drooling over these photographs, I think this is the key to a Restoration Hardware-inspired look. Use texture as the primary element and pay close attention to the details; everything in a minimalist space will be important. In this space, the lack of millwork helps to showcase the gorgeous windows (LOVE them) and incredible flooring. More to come on the flooring, by the way...it's the most beautiful hardwood I've seen in a while.

Anyways, the Veranda article can be found HERE. As for living a healthy and happy life, I think a well-designed home ranks high on the list. That 'apple a day' thing is a little passe now anyways.

All photographs from Veranda Magazine.


That's Refreshing

On a hot day like today (and supposedly the days to come), there's nothing as thirst-quenching as an ice cold drink. I thought it was so sweet today when the owner of a chic little coffee shop next door came by our work and gave us all a glass of their famous berry lemonade. Ice cold and decorated with blueberries and mint, this twist on a summer classic just about made my day!

Here's Good Housekeeping's recipe for the summer's most refreshing Berry Lemonade.

  • 8 cup(s) cold water
  • 2 cup(s) sugar
  • 3 cup(s) (from 15 to 16 medium lemons) fresh lemon juice
  • 3 strip(s) (3 inches by 1 inch each) lemon peel
  • 1 cup(s) raspberries
  • 1 cup(s) blackberries
  • Ice cubes
  • Seltzer or club soda
  1. Prepare sugar syrup: In 4-quart saucepan, heat 4 cups water with sugar and lemon peel to boiling over high heat, stirring occasionally. Cover saucepan and boil 3 minutes. Remove saucepan from heat.
  2. Meanwhile, in food processor, pulse berries until pureed. Pour into medium-mesh sieve set over large bowl and press berry mixture with back of spoon to remove seeds; discard seeds.
  3. Remove peel from syrup; stir syrup into berry puree with lemon juice and remaining 4 cups water. Makes 13 cups. Pour into large pitcher with tight-fitting lid. Cover and refrigerate until cold, at least 3 hours or up to 2 days. Serve over ice. Add seltzer to taste; garnish with berries and lemon slices.
Sounds amazing, doesn't it?

If you're particularly healthy and would prefer a smoothie-type refreshment, O Magazine offers this fruity recipe:

Watermelon Agua Fresca Smoothie
  • 3 cups diced seeded watermelon , chilled
  • 1 cup frozen strawberries
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • Agave nectar (optional)
Directions: Combine the watermelon, strawberries, lemon juice, and salt in a blender. Blend until smooth. Sweeten with agave nectar, if you like.

I just like that it's so quick and easy! Less time away from tanning!


Happy Canada Day!

Wishing you the happiest of Canada Day's....

And a weekend to relax where you like...

Doing all the great things we can do in this country...

Like a hike through the trails...

A neighbourhood ride...
Spending time on the little things...

Or time on the beach...

With the people you love...

(child on left will be me this weekend...lol)

And the drinks you love even more (just kidding)...

Be it fancy or rustic...

(loving this tailgate)...

Happy Canada Day!

All photos from Martha Stewart Living.
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