Monday, 29 October 2012

Real Simple Weddings ...

Hey peeps! I hope you're all surviving hurricane Sandy! Not much is going on up here in Toronto except for lots of wind, no sun and lots of rain. It was a pretty crappy Monday and I may or may not have almost called in sick for work ...

I wanted to update you on my wedding planning process - correction, lack of wedding planning! So far not much has been going on due to the weather, the fiance and I not having time to really sit down and discuss what we want to do due to his hectic work schedule and me not really feeling up for 6 months to a year of wedding planning. Also, the engagement photos didn't happen due to the rain. Ah well :( I guess this is all part of the process AND we've only been engaged for three weeks so no biggie :) 

So let me explain ... I am super excited about marrying the fiance and planning a lovely day for us to celebrate our love and commitment to one another. I am not super excited about picking venues, centre pieces and all that other "fun" stuff that comes along with getting sucked into the wedding machine. I understand that some women get really excited about all these details and that's okay. I think most would expect me to plan a traditional wedding with all the details in check simple because I love entertaining, tend to pay attention to details and have been known to enjoy my DIY projects. I'm just not feeling up for that for our wedding and would prefer to keep it as simple and stress-free as possible. I don't want to get sucked into the wedding machine by losing touch with the true meaning of our wedding. I also don't want the wedding planning to take me away from my everyday routine and all the other things I spend my time doing.  SO, we'll see how it unfolds. The good news it that we're going to be seeing our first venue this Saturday and I have the Real Simple Weddings guide to help me along the way. Thanks Izzay!

Hope you're all having a good week so far.

Happy almost Tuesday! 


Wednesday, 24 October 2012

All Hallows' Eve

Not sure what you're thoughts are about Halloween but I think it can be anything from stressful to super fun. There are years I have the perfect costume planned and am really excited and other years (like last year) where I don't want to spend the time and money looking for a costume. This year I am super excited. My friends and I are going out clubbing for a dear friend's 30th b-day on Saturday night and I can't wait.

Last weekend the fiance and I went to Kensington Market to get inspired. Kensington seems to be the go-to place for Halloween costumes in Toronto. There are lots of vintage stores which basically turn into Halloween stores this time of year. Check out the display outside one of the shops.

I don't really like buying ready-made costumes and prefer to put together my own. This year I am going to be Cleopatra! I was inspired by a snake necklace and bracelet I have that are perfect for this costume. I was going to be Cleopatra last year but was too lazy to look for a dress. I found a one shoulder gold dress in Kensington which will work well for the costume. Bought the wig at Value Village several weeks ago and I'm all set.

Can't wait to show you all the final look. I did my own little quick makeup trial yesterday before washing my face. Playing dress up can be so much fun!!

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Pick Me Up!

Today it rained all day and I hated it. It was dull and wet outside and my mood was down for most of the day. I got to work late because I was tired from the minute I got up. I also left work early because I just didn't feel well. I hate when the weather affects my mood like this and zaps me of energy. Funny thing is, as soon as I got home and closed the blinds and started cooking I instantly felt better. I also made sure to pick up some fresh flowers at the grocery store to lift my mood. 

What are your go-to pick me ups for rainy days?

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Engagement Shoot Inspiration


My pile of stuff for our shoot. Super excited!
As I said before, once the fiance and I got engaged we decided that we wanted to do an eshoot. We both love fall and have always wanted to have pictures together with the colourful fall leaves. We also wanted to do an eshoot as a newly engaged couple simply because everything is fresh and more exciting. We don't want to wait until we're both busy planning for the big day.

We've chosen Beyond Infinity Photography. I saw some of their pics through a friend on facebook over a year ago and loved them. They are just so fun and colourful and I like that most of their shoots have a vintage inspired theme. I am not sure if I am going for the same idea for the wedding so we're not committed to using them and it's really to early to tell.

We both love going for walks, having picnics and riding bikes so this has been our inspiration for the shoot. We've been busy collecting/renting our props and getting our outfits ready.

Stay tuned for the pics from our eshoot!!!!

Please cross your fingers that it doesn't rain :)


Saturday, 20 October 2012

Saturday Brunch Obsession: Beast

Today, the fiance and I ran some errands which included doing some shoe shopping for him, shopping in Kensington for our Halloween costumes and prepping for our upcoming engagement shoot. We (I) woke up late and since we had access to his parent's car we decided to drive over to Queen West to have brunch at Beast.  

I think I've written about Beast before on the blog (most likely about their awesome fried pickles). They also do a happy hour but are really known for doing a good brunch, so naturally we've been curious about their brunch and decided that today would be the day we go. 

The first thing I noticed is that they have really and I mean REALLY good coffee that comes straight to your table in French press and all. You even get a timer to make sure the coffee has finished brewing. I chose one of the Ethiopian medium-dark roasts and every sip was YUM!

I've heard a lot about their maple-bacon donuts so of course we had to try one. I once baked peanut butter bacon cookies and really wasn't a huge fan of the combination. I also don't think that the maple-bacon combo is for me. If you're really into bacon they're worth trying...  

The fiance had the beastwich which is basically a buttermilk biscuit sandwich with friend chicken, pimiento cheese, 2 friend eggs and pork sausage gravy in the middle. He said it was "okay."

I opted for the israeli breakfast which included chicken shawarma, hummus, eggplant, pickled zucchini and two fried eggs. It was good and I'd eat it again. 

Overall, we both enjoy Beast for their fried pickles and casual atmosphere. The brunch was good but honestly it wasn't amazing and I've definitely had better. Not sure I'll be going back for brunch :(  I prefer their tapas style dinner which I've gone back for a few times now. 

Click here for their menus. 

Hope you're all having a lovely weekend :)


Tuesday, 16 October 2012

I'm Engaged!!!!

This past Thanksgiving (exactly two Saturdays ago) the bf (now fiance) and I got engaged!!! It was really special and completely unexpected and I can't stop thinking about it. Who knew that getting engaged would be so much fun? I am still being asked about the proposal and congratulated daily and the whole thing feels surreal! Needless to say I am soaking it all in and enjoying the engagement phase. 

If you recall, I posted (well ranted) about the whole engagement/marriage thing a while back. Click here. Well, I guess that's all over now since no one can now ask me why we arent' engaged.

So there's a brief summary of what happened ... I usually go spinning on Saturdays at 1:30 but ended up going for 3pm since I had not finished my errands/prepping for our Thanksgiving dinner. I found it slightly odd that the bf kept saying it's important I work out and that I should make sure I go spinning ... so I went. I came home (all sweaty and in my workout clothes) and he mentioned that there was a problem with one of our blinds. Since the blind had been an issue in the past I had no reason to suspect anything. Being all nice (as usual) I went straight to the blinds to check it out instead of hopping into the shower. I pulled them up slowly and there was a "will you marry me" sign taped on the window lol! I was shocked and couldn't believe what was happening and may or may not have begun to cry/shake right away. Before I turned around to say anything, he took my hands, said a speech and asked me to marry him. What he said was absolutely touching and a true reflection of our relationship and us as a couple.  It was exactly how I had imagined our engagement would be - private and a surprise. He even videotaped the whole thing so that we can both look back at it (bonus points for him!). Two funny things that happened was that early on into his speech I asked him to slow down since I was still in shock and was worried I wouldn't remember what he was saying. I also gave him the wrong hand at first but realized in time for him to slip the ring on my left hand. That evening we ended up going out for a lovely dinner and stroll through the neighbourhood where we first met and spent a lot of time together early in our relationshiop. It was lovely :) ... Oh, and I am also completely in love with the solitaire ring that the fiance designed from start to finish just for me! It just sparkles and has so much meaning for both of us. 

So there you have it. After 6 years of dating we are engaged!!! It feels right and I couldn't be happier. I know in my heart that I have a really special guy who is kind-hearted, generous and funny. Most of all he is my best friend. We both can't wait to get married and want to get hitched asap lol! We haven't had a minute to sit down and discuss any of the logistics around the wedding but we have a mutual understanding that it will be small and intimate, and likely this summer. 

Both the fiance (his new blog name) and I are enjoying the engagement phase! We have spent the past week or so telling those important to us about our new commitment. My soon to be HUSBAND and I have even booked engagement photos so we can get those fall colours while they still last!

So, I guess it goes without saying that I'll be keeping you all informed about the ins and outs of my wedding planning on the blog. I am super excited to share this special and exciting time with you all :) 


Monday, 15 October 2012

Skin Issues/Beauty Regimen Transition - Clarisonic Review

Lately, I have been doing through a huge transition in my skin/beauty regimen which has been kinda scary for me. I know, sound silly but let me explain ... I had acne as a teen and after trying many things I decided to try Proactive in my early twenties. Early twenties!?! Man, that made me feel old! Anyways, a friend recommended Proactiv to me and it has worked great. So great that I've been using it for over 5 years and basically feel dependent on it. I tried to get off of it at least once in the past but went back to using it because I started to notice some small breakouts and was worried I would never again have the smooth skin Proactiv had helped me achieve. The reason why I want to minimize my use of the product is because it dries out my skin and now that I'm 28 I know that drying the skin is a definite no no that I should be avoiding! 

So here I am a few years later trying to make this transition again. This time I've been a trooper and have been in the transition phase for almost 1.5 months now.  I am still using Proactive once per day since I figured that would be better and easier on my skin than stopping it altogether. I am breaking out a bit and have also been using Clarisonic after a few friends recommended it. It really does help clean the skin and I feel more confident that my makeup is being removed properly. So far I'm happy with the results but we'll see what happens in the future. 

Have any of you used Clarisonic and/or gone through a similar transition in your beauty regimen? How did it go? It seems so simple but it's so hard!

Let's hope I can make it through this time ... sigh.


Sunday, 14 October 2012


Ahh I can't believe it's already Sunday. The past week has been wonderful for me (I'll get to that in a later post). On Friday night I was feeling lazy so I made sweet potato fries for dinner. I hate beer but love fruity strawberry flavoured beers and happened to find one in our fridge. To make myself feel better about this not so healthy meal I added a side of spinach. 

Saturday was a relaxing day. I organized a girls day with some friends and we went to Body Blitz Spa for massages and the therapeutic waters. It was a lot fun. There's simply nothing better than going to the spa with the ladies and getting massages followed by shopping along Queen West. 

Overall, I've had a wonderful weekend and am feeling calm and collected. Not sure what exactly this weeks brings but I'll be going into it with the intention of finding more relaxation time and hitting the gym for more spinning classes.

Hope you're all having a wonderful weekend. It's not over yet!


Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Thanksgiving Weekender

I hope you all had a wonderful long weekend (fellow Canadians). I thoroughly enjoyed myself and used every opportunity to spend time with family, eat yummy food and take in the wonderful fall sights. The bf, mama and I went for a drive up north to check out the changing colours. We went to Caledon East which was in peak change and it was absolutely beautiful! I love getting out of the city for a drive. It didn't bother me at all that it started to rain on our way back. Just as well because we had a lot of cooking to do for the big dinner ...

We had dinner at my place. There were four of us. My wonderful friend Hana chowed down with us. What was going to be a simple dinner ended up being a little more than I had originally planned. We had brussel sprouts, mushroom and walnut stuffing, roasted potatoes, homemade gravy and cranberry sauce, and lemon, rosemary turkey. We finished it off with pumpkin pie and ice cream. It was a lot of food but well worth all the effort. I hope you all ate to hearts desire and enjoyed spending time with your family and friends this past weekend even if you didn't celebrate the holida.


Friday, 5 October 2012

Zucchini Fritters

image source 
Hey peeps :) I'm still here and sorry about the lack of posts. The good news is that although I have not been blogging I have been cooking and treating my belly good. I've been cooking yummy stuff all around, both sweet and savoury. I have also become obsessed with the blog Smitten Kitchen ... 

For example are these delicious zucchini fritters I made about two weeks ago. They were super easy to make and are super tasty especially with the sour cream, lemon and garlic sauce for dipping. 

Not sure what everyone's doing for Canadian Thanksgiving but I hope it's a lovely time. I'll be having my mom and some friends over and hosting the big din for the first time. I guess tomorrow morning I'll be busy prepping the menu and doing some grocery shopping. Also super excited about hopping in the the car and heading north to see all the lovely, colourful leaves!!

Happy Friday