My spelling is Wobbly. It's good spelling but it Wobbles, and the letters get in the wrong places.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Where to?

Air France. The plane I wish I was on...
The boyfriend is getting surgery on his shoulder on May 1 (surgery that he's been putting off for 5+ years, due to the fact that he didn't want to give up rugby. Dedication much?) He's going to be pretty much immobile for 8 weeks or so...and let me tell ya, he's pretty grumpy about it already. This cuts into his precious summer time right after he graduates (again! With another honours degree! Excuse my bragging). We decided a while ago that we'd go away for a couple of days in between the end of exams and his surgery. The problem? We found out his last exam is on April 25th. Meaning we'd only be able to go away somewhere from the 26-29. So our dreams of somewhere hot and tropical to cram his fun summer into got slightly diminished. But that's okay! Because now we get to be creative and go somewhere less hot but more local!
Here are our ideas so far:

  • Ottawa, Ontario
  • Quebec City or Old Montreal, Quebec
  • Chicago, Illinois
  • Washington, DC
  • Niagara Falls, Ontario (despite the fact that we've both been there about 100 times..still always good for a weekend away!)
  • Toronto, Ontario (see note above)
  • Orlando, Florida (I already have passes to Disney World, so that would be good price-wise! Although I've been to Florida a number of times and would like to explore somewhere new. Plus not so sure how enthusiastic my 23-year-old-macho-man boyfriend would be about Winnie the Pooh and Mickey Mouse rides)
  • Jasper, Alberta
  • Banff, Alberta
There are pros and cons to each one... cons for all of the American cities are that I'm not turning 21 until June 3, so if we wanted to go out to a bar or whatnot my lack-of-age would be ruining those plans. Also the price of some of these places are significantly higher than others (we're looking to spend less than $500 each). Anyone have any cheap-ish, random long weekend getaway ideas?

Monday, March 12, 2012

Il Pleut

It's a rainy day here in Southern Ontario, and looks like it's going to be like that all week. Which got me thinking... I need rain gear. I have one umbrella (that I loooovelovelove...has the Union Jack on it!) but I got it for about $5 at a festival, and tends to go inside out on a windy day. Which leaves me slightly wetter than I intend to be. And don't get me started on walking through puddles in my converse sneakers or flats. So, once I save up some extra cash, pay off my car/school and/or win the lottery, I'm going to invest in some of these:
I couldn't resist

I've always wanted a big clear bubble umbrella... it'd be so cool to watch the rain come pouring down right above your head! And since when did rain boots become so adorable?

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Canadian Girls

Dean Brody's "Canadian Girls" is my and my girlfriends' anthem right now. And we're going to see him LIVE when he comes to our school in two weeks!
This song makes me even more proud to be CANADIAN.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Black Bean and Tomato Quinoa

My friend recently introduced me to the glorious superfood that is quinoa. I've been (trying to go) on a health kick lately, eating right and exercising as often as I can. Quinoa is a huge source of protein, fibre, not to mention it's gluten-free and contains lots of vitamins and minerals (check out some info here!) So I decided to start trying to add quinoa to my diet. I found this recipe on pinterest, of course :)
excuse the iPhone-ness of this picture

Black Bean and Tomato Quinoa (adapted from epicurious)

  • 2 teaspoons grated lime zest
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained (I used a 19 ounce can...I love me some black beans)
  • 2 medium tomatoes, diced
  • 4 scallions, chopped
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Wash quinoa in 3 changes of cold water, draining in a sieve each time. 
Cook quinoa in a medium pot of boiling salted water, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Drain in sieve, then set sieve in same pot with 1 inch of simmering water (water should not touch the sieve!) Cover quinoa with a folded kitchen towel, then cover sieve with a lid (the lid won't fit tightly, but no worries!) and steam over medium heat until tender, fluffy, and dry...about 10 minutes. Remove pot from heat and remove lid. Let stand, still covered with a towerl, for 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, whisk together lime zest and juice, butter, oil, sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper in a large bowl (I used a 8-cup mixing bowl, and it went right to the top... the quinoa expands when it's cooked, like pasta, so you'll get a lot out of one cup!)
When quinoa is finished cooking, add to dressing and toss until dressing is absorbed. Then, add remaining ingredients and salt and pepper to taste.
Bon Appetite!

Note: I was unsure whether this recipe was to be served warm or I tried it both ways. And it's great either warm or cold! So suit yourself! :)

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Thankful Thursday!

I've decided that I can definitely start being a little more thankful for everything in my life, so why not start documenting it all as a reminder when times are tough?
So, without further adieu,
My Brewster at the cottage, August 2011
I am thankful for Brewster! Brewster is my 13-year-old West Highland White Terrier, and my constant companion. Wherever I go, he goes... sleeps on my bed, sits beside (on) me on the couch, waits outside the door for me when I'm in the washroom, under my chair at the breakfast table, and is always at the door for me when I come home. He's even the background on my phone, so I always have him with me! I absolutely love him beyond anything, and apologise to everyone I know for constantly being "that" dog person who shoves new pictures of him in their face and dramatically gasp and calls everyone over to see him whenever he's being cute (i.e., usually just lying there).

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Happy Birthday Ella!

Me, Danielle, and Ella!

One of my best friends, Ella, turned 23 on Valentine's Day :) (Sinve I've been a bit busy lately this is a little delayed..but c'est la vie!) We went to Niagara Falls and stayed at a suite in the beautiful Hilton Hotel, met all of Ella's friends, danced our butts off at the Dragonfly Club, and drank a little bit too muchlime jello shots and coconut vodka (sooo yummy. Too yummy, actually, when mixed with Pineapple juice and an I'm-already-buzzed-let's-drink-some-more attitude that I apparently had going that night. Whoops.) 
(Note: All of these pictures were stolen from Ella's camera... I forgot to bring mine during my classic last-minute packing frenzy)
Cute nametags Ella made to help all of her friends get to know one another
"My name's Colleen, has anyone seen my red solo cup?"
It was honestly an amazing night, one that I haven't had much opportunity to experience. It was a bit bittersweet, as two members of our group couldn't make it due to a sudden death and an illness, but we kept them in our minds all night and promised to take them back here :)

Dani dancing away!
The club had a "Mardi Gras" theme to it that weekend, so there were beads and masks and boas everywhere. I'm not really a club person...I've only been to a handful in my life, and have always preferred to just hang out at a bar or at home for that matter. But I actually had a blast this time around :)

Mardi Gras!
But that may have been due to the coconut vodka.

Ella: Champ

Two of my favourite girls!
 I am so lucky to have found such amazing, fun, honest, and hilarious friends. Here's to you,  Ellabella! :)

Monday, February 27, 2012

24 hours...

Things have been C-R-A-Z-Y lately. Between midterms, work, placement at the daycare, and the sudden death of one of my best friend's father, I haven't had time to do much for fun. But alas, in 24 hours I will be able to relax and bask in the glory of three days off of school/placement! (Technically it was supposed to start today, but I had to make up two days at the daycare due to days I had missed. Bummer).
Technically I work Thursday and Friday...but I have Saturday and Sunday off! And I do have a lot of work I should do over my "break". So, really, not much of a break at all.
Man. Only 50 more days until second semester is over!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Still Unsure

I'm still unsure what this blog is going to be about... maybe the occasional recipe, how I'm redecorating my basement apartment (in my mom's house. Typical lazy 20-year-old dwellings), and just little rants about whatever ridiculous things I've gotten into lately. But maybe I should start with the basics of the random weird things that I'm lovin right now!
Winnie the Pooh
I am a 20 year old woman. And I love Winnie the Pooh. So much so, that last year when my dad took my siblings and I to Disney World, the restaurant that I requested to go to was The Crystal Palace...a character breakfast where Winnie the Pooh (and Tigger and Eeyore and Piglet...) come to your table. I was in heaven. I still haven't seen the newest version that came out in May, and it's breakin' my heart, let me tell ya.
Paris, France
Travel. I have never been out of North America... unless you count spending a day in Nassau, Bahamas, when I was on a cruise 6 years ago. I've desperately wanted to go to Europe, specifically France, for 10 years now. I'm saving up for a trip now... slowly, but surely (unfortunately the cost of school, car payments, and other life essentials get in the way sometimes). Here's hoping I'll be staring up at the Eiffel Tower soon!

My Yoga Ball
It's that time of year again... when I realize that I've been over-indulging in all the post-Christmas, Valentines, and pre-Easter food. And I love food. So much. But lately I haven't been feeling up to snuff about my body. I don't have time or money for a gym membership, am smack in the middle of what I'm being told is my hardest semester, working weird hours, spending 24 hours a week volunteering at a daycare for my student placement (although I'm sick today. Whoops), and balancing family/friend/boyfriend relationships. It's exhausting. So, needless to say, working out hasn't been high on my priority list. Last week, however, I started doing two different types of crunches, leg lifts, and push ups on my old yoga ball, and it has been awesome. I can feel the burn, but I also get such a good stretch with it that I can feel it but still move the next morning! It's also more fun than boring sit ups/push ups, which drive me insane.
Kraft Crunchy Peanut Butter
My mama brought home a jar of this the other week. And for about two weeks straight now, I've eaten a toasted, crunchy peanut butter and banana sandwich for breakfast on my way to daycare, and come home and had a honeycrisp apple dipped in it for a snack. It's becoming an obsession.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day! My day was spent doing a midterm in the morning (worth 40%...probably bombed), running around the mall with my 4 best friends at lunch, and then handing in an assignment and spending 3 long, boring hours in class in the afternoon.
My boyfriend found out that one of his midterms had been rescheduled from Friday to today, so I told him not to worry about me and to go study for it.
But he worried about me. I came home to this!
beautiful Valentine's rose!
I've never gotten a Valentine's Day present before, besides from my dad (my past boyfriends all decided to completely ignore the holiday, without telling me. Men.) So I was pretty surprised when I walked in the door and saw this. Stopped dead in my tracks. And...backed away from it. For some reason I was scared? But then I read the card and it was so very him, and I began smiling like an idiot.
I'm a lucky girl.
I hope you all get a little love today, whether it's from a significant other, your parents, friends, pets, or yourself!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Here We Go

I needed another outlet...besides my journal and talking to my dog. And thus, this blog is born. No idea what it will be about. Just the everyday life of a girl in her early 20's trying to not go insane?
Sounds good to me.