Monday, December 21, 2009

A's birthday + potluck food

A turned 24 yesterday!
for the potluck, i decided to make croque monsieurs, veggie panini sandwiches and brie+cranberry puffs. they turned out great, if i may so myself...but the events that preceded A's party were pretty much like a cross between an episode from bridezilla (or insert show with crazy women here) and the breakup, where vince vaughan comes home with three lemons instead of twelve (without the fighting of course!).
at 10:00 am i thought i had everything under control. at 11:30 john got me cooking arugula instead of baby arugula. at 11:35 he was on his way back to longo's. 12:00 john comes back with the right arugula. by 1:00 i was burning things trying to multi task, looking for tape, yelling at no one in particular and drying my hair.
i relinquished everything to john, being the calmer and more patient one (and the sweetest thing in the world), and when i came down, the kitchen was spotless.
and i say i work best under pressure.
in the end, everything turned out great and we got to A's house all in one piece. there was LOTS of karaoke, board games and fun.
(but of course i forgot her gift)

just in case you needed something for your next holiday potluck, here are the links/recipes. i thought that the brie+cranberry puffs are great to bring for work, instead of your typical box of chocolates or candy canes. :)

croque monsieur
my friend virginie says that croque monsieurs are the parisiens' version of street meat. can you imagine?
*instead of coating it with egg, i grilled the sandwiches and topped it with bechamel sauce with gruyere cheese and broiled it in the oven. make sure to watch over the oven. i burnt four yesterday and set off the smoke alarm.

veggie paninis
no recipe link. i made it vegetarian for A...this is how i normally like my sandwiches made from fast fresh foods. in this sandwich i had sundried pesto spread, baby arugula, goat cheese, roasted red peppers. i brushed both sides of the baguette slices with olive oil and grilled them.

cranberry+brie puffs
these are really yummy! no need to slice that cheese up and place it on some type of cracker, nosiree! all you need to do is pick one little puff up and gobble it.
* when making these, you don't need to get rid of the skin, just in case you didn't know. because i didn't. :)

have a great week, all! three more days before christmas!

pearl and A.

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Thursday, December 17, 2009

yay canada!

it was an awesome night at nathan phillips square, where thousands of people braved the wind chill to welcome the olympic torch! of course i got a little emotional: today it felt especially great to be canadian!

this night almost makes you forget about the exorbitant ttc fare hikes and taxes. hardeehar.

more flags than on canada day!

i had to get a shot with this little guy, miga. it's actually a she but for some reason, miga reminded me of jason schwartzman. it even has a bellybutton. hahaha.

consolation for the -6 C (21.2F) temperature!

and then, unfortunately, this.

ps: of course they had to play that black eyed peas song.

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Tuesday, December 15, 2009

yummy mail love

i. i was resolute in baking cookies as christmas presents to send out this year. i decided to bake russian tea cookies and chocolate crack ups or crackles or what my sister and i used to call them when we were younger, crinkles.
they are both very easy to make. the only time consuming part is melting the chocolate, and it's only time consuming to me because i have no patience.

i went to michael's (you can easily spend money at michael's. rubber stamps and patterned paper all of a sudden become a need) and picked up some boxes, twine, clear bags and avery labels. basically the entire sheet is a label and you can just cut it any shape or form you want. being inspired by danni's blog i headed over to martha's site where she had doily templates. i covered the bottom with burlap and placed two bags of cookies and then strung twine around the box.
i sent them out today and it's my first time mailing out food gifts this christmas!

ii. this year i am being very careful with shopping for christmas presents. it's happened before where i bought presents out of obligation...i won't let that happen again. it just takes away the spirit of things. people forget that it's not about the shopping and the presents, but thoughtfulness and of course, a very important person's birthday!

iii. i am dying to tell you what i got john as a christmas present, but cannot as he reads my blog. but i am so very excited. the best part when giving someone a present is their reaction!

v. need ideas? reading karyn's blog post makes me want to sew up presents for this year! i haven't touched my sewing machine in ages.

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Thursday, December 3, 2009

2nd day of christmas: mark the day on these cool calendars

whether you're counting down or planning your days or months, you might just find something here for you or for that organized someone!

calendar wallpaper!
this is perfect for planning a wedding or managing projects!

perpetual calendar
i love the colorful grommets!

bubble calendar!
for those addicted to bubble wrap!

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Wednesday, December 2, 2009

1st day of christmas: smittened by "smittens"

i think this is absolutely adorable:

now you don't have to stuff both your hands in one pocket to keep holding hands. :)
perfect for moms & dads with their kiddies, and of course, for him or her.

from restoration hardware. $49 USD

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Sunday, November 29, 2009

cinnamon buns, cupcakes, vampires & a broken stop sign

hello friends.
*yesterday my mom and i went to pick out our christmas tree. in preparation for the trimming and christmas tree night, i decided to bake cinnamon buns and cupcakes today. our cupcake tins were with my good friend who lives a few minutes away by car and i insisted that i drove.
bad fricking idea. i have NEVER backed out of our drive away. and for some reason today, i forgot which was the brake pedal and which was the acceleration.
i backed up against the stop sign. but at that moment i thought i rammed into our neighbor's garage.
it was all going so fast: john talking so loudly and my little sister telling me to stop and me frantically trying press on the pedals, only to break the sign.
*i have finally given in to the whole twilight craze and decided to buy a previously viewed copy at blockbuster. i must have watched it 5 times this weekend. i love edward. i wish i had a vampire boyfriend (kidding, john). i was giggling throughout the movie and it felt like high school all over again: waiting to see your crush of all crushes, blushing when he notices you. harhar.
*i also watched brothers bloom. i highly recommend it (and rachel weisz's wardrobe). i have a new girly crush on adrien brody. and if you like him there, you should watch him in darjeeling limited.
*had lobster in its purest form today (meaning, not lobster bisque or lobster cakes. lobster straight out of its crustacean case). it's not as rubbery as i had expected it to be. i had it with vinegar, garlic powder and salt instead of butter.
* baking cinnamon buns reminded me of my high school job working at st. cinnamon. those were great times. besides learning how to bake buns i learned how to get a backbone. i got the recipe here. it was my first time working with yeast and seeing the dough rise twice its size was absolutely fascinating.
and that is all. i hope everyone had a good weekend with minimal damage. :)

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Saturday, November 21, 2009

fresh! trends event

crazy busy saturday: teaching grade 8s in the morning and a TRENDS makeup event in the afternoon. it was a lot of fun and was so happy to see all the girls, but then the headache came. a splitting headache after a trends event never fails, but one mcdonald's junior chicken sandwich solved it all.

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Monday, November 16, 2009

a parisienne inspired weekend

being inspired by joanna's awesome parisienne posts has led me to do something similar: take pictures and experience things that remind me of paris. however, going this year has proven fatal like eating a lay's chip:

betcha can't eat just one = betcha can't go just once.

but unlike a lay's chip, paris is actually very good for the senses and for your overall well-being. :)
so what better way to begin than in montreal, quebec right? you would think that these pictures were taken in paris!

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Sunday, November 8, 2009

a day at the farm

hello friends!
it was such a beautiful, warm weekend. the aunt and uncles are here, it's full house and i'm loving it.

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