Saturday, January 30, 2010


hello all! i hope everyone is having a great weekend! it started off with an awesome friday.
this ship always fascinated me. i don't know if it's the real deal and if it can actually sail the open seas, but it is a restaurant/banquet space. i've always wanted to check it out and try it, but there's something questionable about their menus posted up like grubby ads on lamp posts and bus stops.

see the ice? i could hear it cracking and shifting.

john took me for indian food last night at little india. it was the perfect cure to frozen toes and hands! the tandoori chicken, chicken korma, eggplant bharta, pulao rice and of course the naan, were just so amazing. my tummy was really happy. (you should try it!)

we wanted something sweet so we walked over to cafe crepe. i had a nutella and banana crepe (surprised?)...a tad disappointed though that the crepes were all premade. i guess this is understandable since they get lots of customers? i made some crepes tonight with pancake batter, nutella and strawberries and i must say that freshly made crepes are much better and cheaper - it beats the $14 bill!

from cafe crepe, we started walking eastward with the intention of taking the train to meet up with my siblings. but upon seeing nathan phillips square with its twinkling lights and hearing the upbeat music, we concluded that it would be a shame to miss out on skating! and so skating we did.
it was a lovely night, albeit a cold one.
winter's finally beset us. dress warmly all :)

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27/365: get rebel.

taken with the iphone.
walking down queen street with john, i saw this and really liked the font.

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26/365: refilling the atomizer

this took forever to do. i was so afraid i was going to break the bottle so i had to carefully spritz the perfume into the atomizer. it took around 30 pumps to get it full.

miss dior cherie is the only perfume i can wear because it doesn't make me dizzy. for years i had gone au naturel, relying on freshly washed hair and laundered clothes. but there was always something so nice about those girls who pass by you and just smell so sweet! thus my search for perfume-that-does-not-give-me-a-headache began. we were united last year and have been using only her ever since.
i would love to know your favorite perfume to wear!

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Thursday, January 28, 2010

25/365: j'aime this mug

this is john's mug.
my parents bought each family member individual mugs that suit our personality. they bought him one since he's practically part of the family and comes over a lot.
when he's not here i use it. harhar.
beside it are: butter biscuits from the lovely virginie (very yummy) and a baggie prototype for valentine's day. i finally got the "drawstring effect" down pat. this year i think i'll make blondies, wrap them in wax paper and stick them in this bag and perhaps send them in the mail.

how is your day-before-friday like? i had a nice sleep on the train, except when i got off i felt like a total zombie. i can't wait for the weekend. lots of sleep and a possible trip to coquine!

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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

24/365: love story

john surprised me with this little music player (?). it is the cutest thing and it plays the theme from love story. the sound is so tiny.
i remember listening and falling asleep to percy faith and henry mancini cassette tapes (theme from love story was one of them) on my walkman (harhar, back in the day). my taste in music was very much influenced by my dad, who loves music so much. if he had a soundtrack for his life it would most definitely include henry mancini, the beatles, paul mccartney (post beatles), elton john, billy joel and queen.
because of this, a lot of my memories have certain songs attached to them:
* "rock the boat" by hues corporation - a family trip to my very first beach (puerto azul - i remember seeing the sky "touch" the water in the horizon and was so amazed by it)
* "twelfth of never" by olivia newton john - driving from my grandfather's funeral
* bobby goldsboro songs and crooners - sunday afternoons
* sheena easton and suzanne cianni songs - going to school and driving home when i was in elementary
my soundtrack will be really similar to my dad's, but would also include mainstream figures like avril lavigne (before she got married), coldplay (before he got married) and lady gaga for good measure. harhar.
have a good day all :)

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Monday, January 25, 2010

23/365: a mountain of chopped apples

these are chopped apples for my tuna salad. i used to hate packing my lunches for work, but to get on with my resolution to save more money, it is something i had to start doing. can you imagine, i was sometimes spending $15 a day for breakfast and lunch. multiply that by 5 (days) then by 4 (months). and that's not including lattes.
by adding things like apples to my salads or bringing nutella in little containers i now find packing lunch a much more enjoyable task.

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Sunday, January 24, 2010

22/365: rosemary & dijon mustard chicken

i wanted to cook dinner yesterday partly because i was watching food network the whole day and also because i was craving something fried. this was last night's dinner. i didn't really follow a recipe, but thought that dijon mustard and rosemary would taste very good together! it was very simple to make and we had it with parboiled rice and my dad's yummy tortellini soup. i am basing this on what i did last night, so if it seems a lot to you, it's because i was cooking for 8 people! i also eyeballed the mustard and the olive oil, so you can choose to add more or less.

rosemary & dijon mustard chicken
12 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut in chunks, pat dry
2/3 cup dijon mustard
1 cup olive oil
5 sprigs of rosemary, chopped (without the stem of course)
5 cloves of garlic, sliced thinly
juice of one lemon, lemon zest
salt & pepper
olive oil for frying

1. whisk dijon mustard, olive oil, rosemary, garlic, lemon juice + zest together, with just a bit of salt and pepper. take a little taste!
2. sprinkle salt & pepper over chicken then toss into dressing.
3. heat up pan with olive oil for frying on medium-high heat.
4. fry up chicken - make sure you don't crowd the pan!
5. fry on one side for a few minutes, then turn. make an incision with a small knife to make sure it's thoroughly cooked!
6. repeat with rest of the chicken.
7. serve.

give it a try :) the family loved it. i also made enough for today's lunch. hehe.

have a good week, all!

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a saturday out

my moleskine likes the couch.

get it? heart. hart house.

yesterday we had our trends event at hart house. everytime i go i feel like i'm at hogwarts. harhar.
this was followed by yummy $8.99 bento box with a generous serving of california rolls at japan sushi for dinner.

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21/365: little old lady

sometimes you get thrown into certain situations that lead you to believe that perhaps the universe is trying to tell you something.
yesterday i met a sweet old woman on the bus. she wanted to switch seats so that she won't have to struggle to get off and accidentally hit me with her bags. that is her in the picture, waiting to cross the road.
before i go on i want to say that i love talking to strangers, but really hate awkward silences...that's why it's easier for me to talk to cashiers and sales associates- the conversation ends with the transaction. so when she started talking to me i have to admit i felt a little freaked out. oh no, what should i say next? kept running through my mind.
but in those 15 minutes i learned that
* she has a maltese dog named lady charlotte
* she has three grandchildren, ages 32, 18, 11
* she loves wuthering heights and cannot get into sense+sensibility and pride+prejudice
* she and her husband loved walking down harbourfront
* she lives in a home with other ladies
as we were going along yonge street she pointed out at a cemetery and told me that her husband and her sister were there. her husband died 15 years ago, and her sister, 2 years ago.
the part that hurts her the most, she says, is my sister. we did everything together. and then you realize that you're all alone because everyone else is gone.
before getting off the bus she told me to have a good day and to try watching wuthering heights first before reading the book.
after she left, i thought about this chance meeting. it just seemed like one of those things you would read about in a mitch albom novel. i thought about my own life and the mistakes i made. besides sweet facts about this lady, i learned that silence need not be awkward. it's okay to look out at the window and say nothing. you do not need to have a constant flow of conversation. that only happens in movies and shows. with my quick temper and stubbornness i can easily take things and people for granted. this encounter reminded me that life is short, to be thankful and to love others as much as they should be loved, not as much as i can.
so even though my heart hurt for her, i also admired her optimism and energy. i got off the bus feeling good and light.
now to just follow through with these lessons... :)

have a good weekend all!

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Friday, January 22, 2010

20/365: more of lake ontario

this was taken on friday.
it's funny. when you tilt the iphone a certain way, it makes a very sunny day look really gloomy.

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19/365: skating + other things

silhouttes of branches on the ice.

hello all, happy friday!
i had such a great evening!
last night we had a small team building activity and went skating at the harbourfront. for those who live in toronto and haven't skated there yet, you should! it overlooks the lake and at night it is just the most romantic place to be in. but being an outdoor rink there was nothing to hold on to for support and this almost kept me from going on the ice.
i think i am the clumsiest person i know when it comes to all things sporty. i started off very wobbly and very scared, but by the end of the night i was skating by myself and picking up some speed!
and this is all with the help of my boss.
can you imagine your boss teaching you how to skate? following your orders to skate on your right side as opposed to your left so that just in case you trip you can easily grab onto his coat?

afterwards i met up with my best friend in the old mall that we used to hang out in as kids. for those who lived in scarborough, you would know bridlewood mall. this is where we wolfed down onion rings, drank lots of bubble tea and bought bags of salty peas from the bulk store.

i thought about all this and realized that i really shouldn't be so down and blue when there is so much to be thankful for:
* working where i am right now with kickass bosses (all 6 of them!) and co-workers
* my lovely best friend
* my family
* john, who is just so awesome
* go transit so that i can get from markham to downtown easily
* ikea for its cheap and yummy breakfast
* being able to take courses that i really enjoy
* the lake as the backyard
* being able to sit and sleep comfortably every morning on the subway
* sunny days, like today

so if you're feeling blue on this beautiful friday, hug your mom. hug your boyfriend. hug your best friend. or your boss. or whoever. because you're luckier than you think!

have a wonderful weekend everybody.

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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

18/365: dogwalker

i decided to take a walk during lunch today. i'm feeling a little down and needed some vitamin d (plus i am really really craving nutella but can't have any). lucky for me, the lake is the office's backyard.
this was taken with my iphone.
i don't know if you can see her, but that's a girl with two huge, playful retrievers in tow.

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17/365: think big

sorry, i just uploaded this today for yesterday's photo. i have to admit that this 365 daily photo challenge is getting difficult (durs, that's why it's called a challenge!).
when i first started in my current job, i was given a book called the magic of thinking big. i remember rolling my eyes and thinking, great, a self-help book (not that i have anything against them).
fast forward a few months ago (a year later in my job), in the midst of some kind of quarter mid life crisis (almost), i saw it in my bookshelf and whipped it out. and let me tell you, i was lapping everything up. this book is awesome. and to my surprise, it was written in the 1950s. it's crazy, but everything the author addresses: self esteem, lack of confidence, relationships with others, relationship with yourself, etc...are all issues that we are still dealing with today.
one of the most important lessons i drew from this is to remember what your goals are, what you want to be when you "grow up", to never loose sight of that goal and to work tirelessly towards it. he doesn't offer you empty promises, but helps you see things in a different way.
it seems almost childish to have post-it reminders on your mirror, but sometimes i forget - especially on bad days when i think that my goals are unrealistic when really they aren't. so yesterday i remembered and signed up for another night course. one less towards that event+meeting management certificate!
if you've ever felt/thought the way i did (and still do), you should give this book a try.
have a good day, all!

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Monday, January 18, 2010

16/365: more audrey love

these are my favorite audrey hepburn movies. next on my list is charade. who can resist her clothes, cary grant and the kickass henry mancini score?

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the winners!

happy monday everyone! thank you so much for the enthusiasm, encouragement and the sweet comments! so here are the winners for our first giveaway:

comment # 12: kristen from knotted nest
comment # 4:
comment #17:celine from
bonjour celine

congratulations ladies! please email me with your mailing addresses!

this was a lot of fun...maybe we'll do another one. hehe.
have a great day!

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Sunday, January 17, 2010

15/365: i like

i like:
waking up with
raccoon eyes
at 11:51 on a sunday morning
and coming down for breakfast

i hope you are all having a good weekend everyone.

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Saturday, January 16, 2010

14/365: i like

i like:
nap times on saturday afternoons
just before a party

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Friday, January 15, 2010


i don't really have a story for this. except that this picture is further proof of my little obsession with audrey hepburn. no, i'm not like that guy who has a huge collection of simpsons' memorabilia, but i do have her everywhere in my room. and two frames in my bathroom. hm.

today i felt a little sluggish, just going through the motions of work. i stood up twice to retrieve documents from the printer only to find out that i haven't printed anything out.
i aspartamed my coffee twice. this is a much needed weekend!

so have a good week all and rest up! take advantage of this freakish (yes, it's freaky) spring weather we're having. no snow in january! can you believe that??? even in markham.
yes, even in markham.

ps: you still have a chance to win some letterpressed goods by me and john!
pps: thank you for all the nice and encouraging comments! we really appreciate it.

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Thursday, January 14, 2010

12/365: bus driver's little helper

this was taken on the bay street bus
to union station
from fedex kinko's
because i was running late for a meeting.

but with the traffic i thought to myself that it would have been better if i had just walked.

and then: "mr. bus driver! play something on the P.A!"

that was the bus driver's adorable daughter. probably 8 years old, in the cutest white tights with colorful polka dots.

hearing this little girl sing twinkle twinkle little star over the p.a and announcing the next stops in her cute tiny voice affirmed my decision in taking this bus, even if it meant being late.

this totally made up for everything.

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Wednesday, January 13, 2010

11/365: lethal scissors

i did some sewing today. for the first time in ages. i don't even remember the last time i sewed something, so much so i had to i had to remind myself how to thread the machine!
in the background are the butter biscuits that virginie sent me. i am trying to eat them slowly and only allow myself one package a day, but sometimes it's a little hard to muster some self-control.
i hope you all had a great day, friends!

ps: your comments are all great. you guys are great!

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Tuesday, January 12, 2010

10/365: these windows are made of gold.

taken with my iphone.
walking back to work.
the sun was shining and i had to show you this.
the window of the rbc building is made of gold.

yup. that's right.

there are 14,000 windows in total.
each window is coated with a layer of 24k gold.
total value: $1,000,000
but unlike the stolen limestones of pyramids, the gold in these windows are not recoverable.
womp womp. hehe.

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first giveaway - win a set of cards + letterpress workshop

hello friends. this post may be a little long, only because there is so much to tell you. we enjoyed our workshop on sunday so much. having our brunch at the palmerston was so convenient because it was literally a few seconds away from bookhou.
now bookhou i have only seen in pictures, but seeing it in person was just amazing. and it was such a beautiful sunday morning too that the sunlight seemed to make the entire store glow. i loved everything about it: the "gallery feel", the products, arounna's work/craft space, the artwork.

after giving us a quick tour around the store and a brief intro on the letterpress, we got down to business. we showed her the paper that we had brought. for those who are going to be doing letterpress workshops in the future, woolfitts is having a sale till first week of february i believe. john and i bought a package of gigantic sheets of canson paper which is perfect for letterpress for 99 cents each or $24 for 24 sheets.

without a proper paper trimmer/cutter (anyone know where i can get one for a good price?) it took me hours to cut up the paper using a utility knife (yes, i cringe too). i rounded out the edges and they didn't look so bad. still, i wish they came out a little cleaner on the sides. setting up the press was the most time consuming part (kinda like cutting out patterns and prepping your sewing), just because you want to make sure that everything looks good and spelled correctly! harhar. we had a few spelling mistakes.
all the illustrations are hand drawn by john and arounna got the plates made for us for a fee. aren't they nice? and they're not bad framed!

so as you can tell, we kinda got a little carried way. which means that we have quite a few to give away! we are giving away:
* your choice of moleskine cahier and 1 card/print - choose from leica, yahica and holga (graphing paper moleskine) and choose from the 6 cards
* the camera card set - set of three cards with the leica, yashica and holga, 5x5
* the random objects card set- set of three cards with the umbrella, cupcake and teabag
what must you do?
all you have to do is leave a comment before midnight of sunday, january 17 and let us know what you would like to receive. to make it fair, no facebook comments please! friends, if you are reading this from facebook you must comment on my blog. we will randomly select three lucky commenters and announce the winners on monday, january 18, 10:00 AM. this is the first time i'm ever doing a giveaway, so if something doesn't make sense, don't hesitate to email.
this workshop was the little push that john and i needed to really get on with planning our own etsy store. it is something that we have always wanted to do but we have always been too scared to start. so hello etsy, watch out for us! :)
have a good day everyone!

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Monday, January 11, 2010

9/365: the other side of the room

this is where:
- i write letters
- write in my journal
- blog
- read blogs
- read even more blogs

my craft space tends to get really, really messy and when i'm in the middle of something i prefer to keep it in an organized mess. so i've decided to keep this side of the room "craft-free". in this way i can enter my room without feeling overwhelmed by craziness. harhar.
do you have an "other side of the room"?

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the palmerston

i had such a good day yesterday! as a christmas gift for him, i signed john and myself up for a letterpress workshop at bookhou. i will blog about the letterpress workshop in a separate post, but i would like to share with you this little cafe that we went to. we wanted to have brunch before our class, and arounna suggested the palmerston.

the owners were super friendly and they let me take as many pictures as i wanted (some establishments don't allow it for some reason. like the red tea box). crooners were singing in the background (from sirius' great american songbook) while john and i sipped on lemoned water and coffee.

i ordered the eggs benedict and john got croque monsieur.

they were both very good. instead of the typical combination of english muffins and hollondaise sauce, the eggs benny at the palmerston was made up of grilled slices of baguette, arugula and drizzles of olive oil. at first glance, the eggs looked like they were going to be rock hard with a coagulated mess of a yoke. oh but the eggs were awesome. they were perfectly poached.
we spent $15 each, including taxes and tip and free refills of amazing coffee. eating was very enjoyable and we left feeling satisfied without feeling gross, and ready to do some letterpressing!

the palmerston
800 dundas street west

you should go. :)

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Sunday, January 10, 2010

8/365: like fruits on a tree

i had the funnest weekend ever. will tell you more about it this week. i just wanted to show you this tree that we saw on dundas. i loved it.
i hope you all had a great weekend!

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Saturday, January 9, 2010

7/365: "sobriety"

my dad was clearing out some holiday detritus today and i found this sitting by the backdoor. it amazes me how people can go through so many bottles of beer (no, my dad didn't drink this all!).
the morning started off with a huge stomach ache from last night's dinner of wings, my dad's awesome mac+cheese and wedges. i had to teach little grade 2s today and had a hard time getting them to settle down. so i ended up having to bribe them with a contest/quiz and with skittles as the main prize (they loved it. must now by packages of skittles.)
i am now downing probably my 4th cup of coffee of the day and finished an entire package of this, in purple yam flavor. yum.
today is my friend leslie's quarter of a year birthday celebration and cannot wait. this is definitely going to be an awesome ending to the day. *play that BEP song here. harhar.*
have a great weekend, everyone!

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Friday, January 8, 2010

6/365: shovels

living in markham means lots of snow. which means lots of shovelling. which i do not mind at all. in fact i love shovelling. and i wish i was still young enough to own a shovelling business. similar to a lemonade stand. that would have been cute.
keep warm, everyone!
ps: this was supposed to have been published yesterday, but completely forgot!

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