December in pictures, and 2013 (briefly) in review

A little lighter on the pictures in December, but still focused on things that are me: food, dogs, jewellery, teal.

donkeys in the snow // milk chocolate pineapple and black pepper bar // the historic Distillery District // spicy Mayan hot chocolate // Sven the 120-lb 9-month-old Bernese Mountain puppy // jewellery cleanup // aqua Kitchenaid stand mixer, I want it but have no need for it // New York Times 36-hour cookie dough // Shake Shack frozen custard with chocolate toffee

Again in 2013, my blog and my Instagram continues to serve the purpose of keeping track of what I’ve done in the past year, because without it, I wouldn’t remember anything.

It’s a bit alarming that every year my memory becomes more and more like a sieve, I do keep the big bits (I haven’t forgotten that my sister had major surgery this year and that was a big deal), but some of the big bits I probably should have retained almost slipped through. Like the fact I spent a week’s vacation in BC in August. Will’s sister got married that week, that’s something I should be able to easily remember, from not that long ago. But apparently not. I fear early-onset Alzheimer’s.

According to my blog and my Instagram, this is what I did this year:

  • Travelled a lot (by my standards). Boston, Boston again, Ottawa, Parksville and Vancouver, cottage in Muskoka, Iceland, London, Copenhagen, Ottawa again, and Boston again for Christmas (just back on Sunday night).
  • Ate a lot. I even devoted an entire post to what I ate in Europe. What can I say, I love food.
  • While eating a lot, managed to keep myself in my current clothes by walking and working out more. I bemoaned by fitness commitment issues (I really hate working out), but I found barre3 and realized that finding something I like is more than half the battle.
  • Didn’t keep very good track of my shopping. I think I bought some knit dresses, more jewellery, easy basics, and multiples (of knit dresses and basics like sweaters and T-shirts).
  • Took all of my outfit photos by iPhone. There might be one or two in there taken by someone else, but I relied on the iPhone all year to snap quick pics before running out the door.
  • Took a lot of photos from my balcony. Here are some more!

This was after the great ice storm of 2013 that hit Toronto, when the drizzle cleared up and the sun came out. It was so beautiful, Will and I had to go out and take more pictures around the neighbourhood.

The sunset hitting the icy trees was beautiful, far better than my iPhone could capture.

I’m ending 2013 with a nasty chest cold/bronchitis, so there’s no partying for me tonight (not that I do a lot of that when I’m healthy anyway). I’m thinking dinner and a movie on the couch, after I get home from seeing the matinee show of Les Miserables this afternoon (I bought my ticket a few weeks ago, I’m dragging myself out to that).

Hope everyone has a great (and safe) New Year’s Eve, thanks for reading in 2013, and see you in 2014!


'twas the morning after the night before Christmas

Oh wait, that makes it Christmas morning. Merry Christmas everyone!

My brother-in-law is leaving this morning to visit his sister in BC, so we had a big Christmas dinner last night. Roast prime rib, Yorkshire pudding, Brussels sprouts, mashed sweet potatoes, and a pavlova for dessert. My tummy hates me this morning, but I'll recover in a few hours to have our second big meal, roast duck. After that, fasting. (Just kidding. It's still the holidays!)

Yorkshire puddings from Will's mom's 50-year-old recipe


Prime rib, medium rare, the way it should be. 


Pavlova with whipped cream, passion fruit curd, and pomegranate seeds. I ate a quarter of that last night. I regret nothing. 


Will and I flew out of Toronto to Boston yesterday morning and we were fortunate that it was smooth and painless. It was a rough few days for Toronto with the ice storm, but Will and I and most of the people we know have been very very very lucky. The power stayed on for us all weekend, and we flew out after the storm was over so there were no problems. I feel for everyone who still doesn't have power on Christmas morning, especially the kids. I kinda feel like I should be back in Toronto helping out people. I am feeling very very thankful for what I have though.


Black–the night that ends at last

I’m been in a deep blue, very un-Christmassy-like funk for most of December. Black is appropriate

Anthro Cream Confection Jacket (Idra – 2010) // Club Monaco striped top // Club Monaco Janis tuque (that’s beanie to all non-Canadians) // Gap legging jeans in indigo (I’m wearing jeans!) // Geox boots (2009) // Marc Jacobs Preppy Leather Hillier Hobo (2012)

I faked it with my bright pink tuque, but I’ve been pretty bummed. Not sure why. Probably just tired and worn out. I’ll be fine with a little time off over Christmas.

Hot chocolate helps.

Soma chocolate Spicy Mayan – not too sweet, and very spicy

Overindulging on chocolate helps too.

Pineapple and black pepper bar, tumbled australian ginger and wild cherries

(I’m calling December my Fatty Fat Fat Fat month, I’m pretty much eating whatever I want and it’s awesome, but I will have to shut it down come January.)

Big dogs help too.

Big 9-month-old dum puppies named Sven who already weighs 120 pounds. (He gave me a big doggie hug.)

Also dogs and bundled up small children.

And surprisingly, the snow helps too. It make me feel more in the Christmas spirit.


Red–I feel my soul on fire

The obvious title for this post is “Lady in Red,” but instead I went for revolutionary students and British/French musicals.

Blues are generally my colour palette of choice, I gravitate towards the cooler end of the colour spectrum. Sometimes I wear a bit of pink, sometimes I wear orange, but I never wear red. I’m not opposed to red, I just don’t wear it.

Antho Elementary Jersey Dress (Girls From Savoy) // J.Crew knockoff necklace from Etsy // Wolford Satin Opaque tights in anthracite // Tory Burch Reva flats

I was going to buy it in blue, but I have many blue dresses already so out of the comfort zone and into the red. (Also great sale price with the recent 20% off Black Friday promo, managed to get the promo price on the black one too. Definitely not worth the original $118, but $32? That’s Old Navy pricing. Score.)

It feels different to wear red. Saucy even.

with bubble necklace // J.Crew Jenna’s Cardigan

I love turquoise and red, but the bubble necklace seems to be competing too much so I swapped it out with the Stella & Dot Marchesa necklace.

So I’ve worn it twice so far, and I can’t believe the number of people (dudes included) coming up to me and saying “OMG, you never wear red!” I think I would have caused more of a stir if I’d walked in naked. (I won’t. It’s cold out.)


Giant scarves

I went to Ottawa this past weekend to hang out with my family and it was cold, with almost a foot of snow on the ground. Pretty, and cold. So, so cold.

At my parents’ place outside of Ottawa.

Like Kendi, I’m a big fan of the oversized scarf this fall, for aesthetic reasons. They just haven’t been very practical in warmer Toronto, my neck overheats and feels like it’s on fire. (The Scarf Games: Catching Fire). I’ve been grateful for it a few mornings here, but not as much I was standing outside watching a Santa Claus Parade with my 5-year-old nephew.


I’ve been mostly wearing it unlooped, and I hope it looks more like a scarf/shawl than a gigantic grey knit necklace.

(Rosy cheeks from the cold, not an insane amount of blush.)

Infinity scarves have been around for a while but I’m just getting into them, typical for me. But they’re actually perfect because they’re so easy for someone as useless at tying a scarf as I am. So I turned my beloved teal Club Monaco scarf into an infinity scarf (with the use of double-sided tape) and no one will be any the wiser.

Did I mention it was cold in Ottawa? Here’s more proof.

Abby the Basset hound in the snow.

snowy Basset!


November in pictures

November was heavy on the Instagramming (follow me here), with lots of food photos, and a few dogs thrown in for good measure. All in all, a fairly typical month.

November is Han Solo // I love pomegranate season // Abby dog doesn’t want to play piano // she’d rather lie there // yeah they do // leftover Halloween candy // Anthropologie mugs // Starbucks Christmas treats // Ruffles jalapeno popper potato chips (good, but a little artificial)

Purdy’s English toffee // Vietnamese bun // Les Miserables at the Princess of Wales Theatre in Toronto // that’s not the usual Les Miserables font // post-Les Miserables treat // Vietnames pho // West Elm display // Purdy’s caramel marshmallow // it’s a good pick-me-up at work

Saturday afternoon with a golden lab named Maggie at Club Monaco // key lime tart // not a runaway bride, she’s just trying to cross the street // a warm afternoon = key lime pie and Skor gelato // Casey the Westie at Spectacle is sleeping // “you woke me up for this?” // wish pillow at Anthropologie // sparkles at Anthro // breakfast (it wasn’t a great month)

Friday lunch, Banh Mi Boys pork belly sandwich // Friday dessert, another key lime tart // snowing! // lunch at Wvrst (chorizo sausage, no bun, with duck fat fries // Soma gingerbread toffee // I might look like I’m being strangled by the Club Monaco Tala Infinity Scarf, but it’s warm // pretty snow // pomegranate happiness // an old jewellery favourite

And of course, some shots off my balcony, sunrises and sunsets, and some pretty snow shots.


Stupid sexy Flanders

I’ve been neglecting some of my old favourite jewellery in favour of big statement pieces, but I made a point to go back and wear something old this week.

J.Crew Lightweight Merino sweater // Ayala Bar necklace // Anthropologie Circle the Globe skirt // navy Wolford tights // Nine West heels

(I just realized that today’s outfit is remarkably similar to this one from a month ago. Oops. It’s navy instead of black though! It’s different, I swear!)

I bought this Ayala Bar necklace in 2009 in Vancouver (at a store called Lou Lou Luv in Kisilano), and it’s one of my favourites. When I put it on this week (for the first time in a while), I couldn’t believe how light it is. Seriously, it’s like I’m wearing nothing at all. Which makes me stupid sexy Flanders. (Nothing at all! Nothing at all! Nothing at all!)

Although real Thanksgiving was almost two months ago (Thanksgiving in November? weird), I hope all my American friends are in a turkey stupor and planning to stay away from the Black Friday craziness. Online shopping all the way.


borrowed jewels

One of my oldest and dearest friends is a Stella & Dot independent stylist, and she has very very kindly lent me some of her sample pieces to try out. It’s so much fun!

Jolie Necklace:


Peacock Necklace:


Club Monaco Cece Cashmere Tee // Club Monaco skirt // Wolford tights // Tory Burch Reva flats

I really like both, but of the two, I’m leaning more towards the Peacock necklace. But looking forward to trying out more.



It’s only Wednesday, and here are the things I’m already tired of this week:

  • Rob Ford. Go away already. Even my sister (who lives in Boston and has never lived in Toronto) is tired about people asking her about him.
  • Being cold. I’ll turn up the heat soon though.
  • Craving sugar. My own fault, I keep eating it. Hard to stop once I’ve started.
  • Being so freaking tired all the time. I’m in bed by 9:30 every night. But at least I’m not sick.
  • Having sore muscles all the time. Is this what fit people feel like or am I doing something wrong?
  • Work.

What makes things better? Knit dresses. (Also a new phone case!)

Anthropologie Torsade Jersey Dress (Lilka) // bubble necklace // Wolford Satin Opaque tights // Tory Burch Reva flats


Unintentional hiatus

I think I might have blacked out for the past two weeks. I definitely didn’t intend to take a break from posting; I didn’t even realize that it had been more than two weeks since I last posted.

So just a quickie post of something I wore this week (definitely not this morning, I’m in my see-through Target leggings and a Gap t-shirt and my hair is messily huge/hugely messy), black dress, teal tights (can’t tell too well in this light, but they’re teal), and Stella & Dot’s Marchesa necklace.

Anthropologie Elementary Jersey Dress (Girls From Savoy) // Stella & Dot Marchesa necklace // Wolford tights // Michael Kors heels

One of my oldest and dearest friends is a Stella & Dot independent stylist and I got the Marchesa through her, of course. She’s also been kind enough to lend me her sample pieces to try out/review, so there will be more jewellery coming up, if I don’t mentally black out again and actually remember to post.

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