Monday, September 03, 2012

Hot & Dolce

Some years summer in Canada leaves us with the taste for more. It's not hot enough, we get lots of rain, or it snows all the way into mid May. Regardless of what the reason is, it leaves a taste of 'not enough'.
This year, summer was long. It was hot, humid, started early and still although it's already September, I can still feel it!
But with all that, it felt short.
And now that the geese seem to be back:
The signs of what's to come are walking across the street, stopping traffic.
Maybe that's the reason I felt like I needed to savor the heat.
Mama and I found another piano:
This time, we brought someone along that can play :)
My first visit to AGO produced a long wait
and an exquisite look at the works of Picasso
I also got to visit a new restaurant (for me at least) with my favorite two boys and share / indulge in a dessert the was mostly made of Nutella.
That day was complete when we visited a beautiful beach just before sunset.
Indulgence is a sin in some religions, but this is my Le Dolce Far Niente. Pin It Now!

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Challenge Post 8: What are 5 passions you have?

  1. My Family: My family includes those that are bound to me by blood, by love, or by friendship. For some it's all three. I have a passion for them. I love them all abundantly, without any limitations. They are my lifeline. They make me laugh and cry, happy and elated. They make me feel things that I never knew I always wanted to feel. In good or in bad, I can't exist without them.
  2. Music: It's funny that my second passion was brought about by my 1st passion. I grew up in a musical home. Musical instruments, singing, records, the works. My taste in music is so eclectic that any time anyone asks me what I like to hear - the answer is different. I define moments in my life by the music I was hearing at the time. to me, Music is like scent, it brings up memories. I love hearing it, watching it, and making it. 
  3. Life: I have a passion for life. Sometimes I feel like I would like to live forever. Sometimes I just want to live 500 years. This is probably a good explanation to my fascination to all things vampire (the Anne Rice kind - the ones that don't sparkle). 
  4. Travel: Right along with life, and music - I love to absorb it all around the world. I haven't been to very many places just yet - but I have many more years of travel ahead of me. And I can't wait!
  5. Art: This passion is very similar to my passion for music. I've always had it in some form in my life. I love creating it, as well as watching it, or hearing it. I love travelling to it, and I love sharing it with my family.

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Monday, July 30, 2012

Challenge Post 7: What is your dream job, and why?

My dream job is to be a mentor or a muse.
I can see that you have furrowed your brow on the other side of this screen.
Maybe you even snorted a little at this fantasy job of mine.
By all means, this is not the typical job you would find on job listings around the internet.
When someone comes up to you at a party and asks "What do you do?" you can't exactly answer "I am a muse".
But if I could only choose one thing to do for the rest of my life, I would strike the match to inspiration for others and bring the electricity to that proverbial light-bulb.
A girl can dream..

What is your dream?
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Tuesday, July 24, 2012

A week's summery

This week has been showing off some real weather tricks. We've seen hot, scorching, wet, monsoon, vertical rain, and just plain mild. All in less then 7 days.
My darling husband showed off some hotdog chef tricks that would put Gordon Ramsey to shame (or at least I like to think so). It's a maximum mustard preservation method.

I visited Starbucks for a lovely evening meeting with a friend. My Cherry Walnut biscotti came with irresistible instructions.
I followed them accurately!

Saturday was hot.
Mama and I went to a local shoe sale. Unsurprisingly, the crowd was a mob. Mama and I looked at each other, and backed away slowly. Shoes are fun, but battle wounds are fierce.
Lucky for us, outside the shoe sale, there was a book sale [read: options!].
The universe was trying to tell me something.
I happily obliged.
Yes, you are seeing right: that sign says $4.60/book.
I bought, got home and reorganized my library on Sunday.

That same Saturday we had a lovely afternoon celebrating hubby's Nonna's 75th birthday with lots of BBQ food and her favorite lemon poppy seed cake.
A week of sweet, salty, sour, and wild tricks completed.
More please! Pin It Now!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Challenge post 6: What is the hardest thing you have ever experienced?

Hence it's #1 in my list of fears.
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Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Challenge post 5: What are the 5 things that make you most happy right now?

  1. My husband who makes me laugh at the most inappropriate places and times, even when I think all is lost
  2. My family & friends and all their amazing support which I couldn't repay in 3 lifetimes
  3. How warm this summer has been 
  4. Those peaches
  5. What my future holds

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Challenge post 4: List 10 things you would tell your 16 year-old self, if you could

  1. Going to Canada will not end your world. It will open a window to a life you've never even known you could dream of. 
  2. Keep running, you'll wish you did.
  3. Keep reading, you will always love it.
  4. People that feel wrong for you, are wrong for you.
  5. Those little accomplishments will pay off, and will feel like big ones in years to come.
  6. Those friends you always had, they'll always be there as sisters.
  7. Your family will always be there for you, and they will always be the most important thing in your life.
  8. Don't wish to skip ahead, even those tough moments were important to experience.
  9. Keep being honest and candid. Those who deserve your company will always appreciate this.
  10. Have fun. Life goes by quickly. You only live ones, but if you do it right, once is enough. 

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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Challenge post 3: Describe your relationship with your parents

It's fabulous!
I love them, they love me.
I enjoy spending time with them, and it is reciprocated.
There is nothing complicated about it, or hidden.
Plain and simple.
And this applies to my in-laws too. How lucky am I!
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Monday, July 16, 2012

Challenge post 2: Describe 3 legitimate fears you have and explain how they became fears

By order of intensity
  1. Loss: of my family
    • I guess this is a pretty common fear. This year it has become stronger and more prevalent in my life, but it has always been a first place sort of fear. Dear universe, I have faced this fear enough for 1 year, I would like a long meaningful break. Thank you. 
  2. Losing Control
    • Yes, I am what some people call, a control freak. The truth is, I always have been. It's intoxicating for me to be in complete control when it comes to most of life. Losing control, is a real fear for someone like me. I can let go of it, but I have to be willingly giving it up.
  3. Needles in my back / head
    • My mother theorizes that because I had many such needles when I was a newborn due to jaundice that I am traumatized from it all. I can't really identify the source, but this particular fear has been so strong that I endured through root canals as a 10 year old without anaesthesia. I also walked out on a dentist when I was 15 because he wouldn't treat me without the shot.
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Saturday, July 14, 2012

A Saturday of leisure

It's July.
Going out to the city makes my skin tingle with anticipation. The sun warms the air up in the early morning hours, and by the time I decided to get out it was well over sweaty level weather.
There is this magical air about July. The summer is in full swing. The warmth of the summer wraps you like a blanket.
The evenings are balmy and inviting. Love is in the air, even if you're single.
You get to sneak a peek at how people respond to this lovely heat. As they sit near a fountain, soaking it all in.
I love Toronto's quirky unexpected park features. Today it was a graffiti spray painted piano, with the irresistible invitation: Play me, I'm yours.
Best if all, on this leisurely Saturday I got to go to the market. I got some baked goodies, and peaches. 
Those beautiful peaches. They represent summer in every way. Sweet, juice of life, with the taste of summer packaged in that golden flesh.

Dear summer: Play me, I'm yours!

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Saturday, June 30, 2012

Lemon blueberry yogurt muffins

I loved the Recipe I found under this PIN. But I'm not so much of a loaf gal, so I converted the recipe to muffins :). These little buggers are sour and sweet almost equally. The lemon juice and zest make these irresistible!
I hope you enjoy them as much as hubby and I have!

The recipe:
The muffins:
1 1/2 cups + 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour, divided
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest (the more the merrier)
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup peanut oil (a little less is ok, and ass water if there isn't enough liquid)
1 1/2 cups blueberries, fresh preferably, and rinsed (if you want to add extra, feel free)

For the Lemon Syrup:
1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/3 cup sugar
Large pieces of lemon zest for decoration

For the Lemon Glaze:
1 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
2 to 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Place paper muffin cups in muffin pan.
2. In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder and salt; set aside.
3. In a large bowl, whisk together the yogurt, sugar, eggs, lemon zest, vanilla and oil.
4. Slowly whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients.
5. In the now empty dry ingredient bowl, mix the blueberries with the remaining tablespoon of flour, and fold them very gently into the batter.
6. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake 30 to 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the muffin comes out clean.
7. Let cool on a wire rack on top of a baking sheet.
8. While the muffins are cooling, make the lemon syrup in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir together the lemon juice and sugar and lemon zest until the sugar is completely dissolved.
9. Once dissolved, continue to cook for 3 more minutes. Remove from the heat.
10. Brush the top of the muffins with the lemon syrup. Let the syrup soak into the muffins and brush again. Let the muffins cool completely.
11. To make the lemon glaze, in a small bowl, whisk together the confectioners’ sugar and 2-3 tablespoons of the lemon juice. The mixture should be thick but pourable. Add up to another tablespoon of lemon juice if the mixture is too stiff.
12. Pour the lemon glaze over the top of each muffin. Place a piece of lemon zest on each muffin.
13. Let the lemon glaze harden, about 15 minutes, before serving.

Yields: 18 muffins
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Challenge post 1: List 20 random facts about yourself

1. I'm a little addicted when it comes to good coffee
2. I love spring and summer
3. The only things I like about winter is skating outdoors and watching snow from indoors
4. The only reason I would want to win the lottery is so that I could volunteer instead of work
5. I don't like to move
6. I love packing for vacation
7. I dislike unpacking from vacation
8. I have not yet mastered the delicate balance of keeping a clean house, as well as a happy marriage. I find one of the 2 always suffers in favor of the other.
9. My green thumb is more like a brown thumb this summer. Everything is not surviving
10. I'm a cat person
11. My husband makes me laugh in the most inappropriate places and situations. He stole my heart by doing that.
12. People think that getting me to drink will bring out a wild side. They don't realize I hide that side somewhere else.
13. 13 has been a lucky number in my life. 12 has not.
14. I love pinteresting
15. I don't love Apple products. I have 2. I didn't choose either. i don't apple..
16. I coupon. Not like the crazy ladies on that show, but it doesn't stop my dear friend F to suggest I appear on the show.
17. I love the smell of lemon and of clean sheets.
18. I love hot yoga
19. I have nice in-laws, and a fab sister in law.
20. My family is the most important thing in my life.

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Friday, June 29, 2012

Hello again :)

Wow it's been a while..
Hello my little blog land, I have thought of you and missed you often.
You know how it is, life gets in the way while you are trying to blog.
Life has gotten in the way..modified some things, and moved some worlds, but here I am. 
Myself, albeit a little changed.

So to get back in the swing of things and make it interesting, I will take on a little challenge.
I saw this gem in another person's blog, so I decided to borrow the idea (I hope she doesn't mind), and make it my own:
My plan is to complete the list as soon as I can.
If you've been a reader of mine for a while you will know that I try not to set timeline goals - because I know life gets in the way sometimes.
But do not worry, I will attempt some diligence with this puppy.
The incentive - I love talking about myself :p

I am nothing if not candid.

The list of things to talk about:

  1. List 20 random facts about yourself.
  2. Describe 3 legitimate fears you have and explain how they became fears.
  3. Describe your relationship with your parents.
  4. List 10 things you would tell your 16 year-old self, if you could.
  5. What are the 5 things that make you most happy right now?
  6. What is the hardest thing you have ever experienced?
  7. What is your dream job, and why?
  8. What are 5 passions you have?
  9. List 10 people who have influenced you and describe how.
  10. Describe your most embarrasing moment.
  11. Describe 10 pet peeves you have.
  12. Describe a typical day in your current life.
  13. Describe 5 weaknesses you have.
  14. Describe 5 strengths you have.
  15. If you were an animal, what would you be and why?
  16. What are your 5 greatest accomplishments?
  17. What is the thing you most wish you were great at?
  18. What has been the most difficult thing you have had to forgive?
  19. If you could live anywhere, where would it be and why?
  20. Describe 3 significant memories from your childhood.
  21. If you could have one superpower, what would it be and what would you do with it first?
  22. Where do you see yourself in 5 years? 10 years? 15 years?
  23. List your top 5 hobbies and why you love them.
  24. Describe your family dynamic of your childhood vs. your family dynamic now.
  25. If you could have dinner with anyone in history, who would it be and what would you eat?
  26. What popular notion do you think the world has most wrong?
  27. What is your favorite part of your body and why?
  28. What is your love language?
  29. What do you think people misundertand most about you?
  30. List 10 things you would hope to be remembered for.

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