Tag Archives: treat

a decadent drink + a marvelous movie

sunday was a fun day!

part i:

in the afternoon, i met up with mom and dad at starbucks. this was a momentous occasion because i had my first-ever iced beverage!!

mmmm!!

it’s true! i’ve never had a frappa-cappa-latta-mochi, ever, and sunday was the day to try one of s’bux specialty iced drinks. since it was 3 p.m., i did not want anything with coffee in it, so i ordered (after receiving info and clarification from the barista) a double chocolatey chip (don’t quote me, but i think that was the name). i loved it! this beverage becomes entry #2 in the wildly decadent and delicious desserts category for the 12 days of kiki project. here’s a fact: any time you add whipped cream and/or chocolate sauce to anything, said item automatically gets bumped into “decadent” status. [i’m calling it now: the remaining three desserts of the project are going to be ice-y cold, in some way, shape or form]. anyway, that chocolate drink gets a **** rating, and i highly recommend it.

the main reason for our get-together was to celebrate mom’s upcoming birthday!

a photo to mark the occasion!

as part of her gift, i made mom a pair of socks…

how many socks do you see???!…

…except due to technical difficulties, i only had one sock completed! so, mom received one sock on sunday and an IOU card for its partner. hopefully, by this weekend, mom will have TWO socks in her possession!

we had a lovely time visiting and raising a glass an iced drink in mom’s honour!

part ii:

sunday eve, we headed back over to the princess in order to attempt, once again, to catch the film the best exotic marigold hotel.

would we have better luck getting in on an overcast and humid sunday eve of a non-long weekend?

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yes!…but barely! we got seats mid-theatre -> would not have wanted to be any closer to the screen!

we’ll go with inside-the-theatre photos, this week!

hello!

we all loved the movie. i give it a rock-solid ***+ star rating.

the storyline is captivating and quick-paced and filled with unexpected twists. my favourite characters were played by bill nighy and maggie smith, but the movie is chalk full of stellar performances. the dialogue is LOL funny in parts, but the film is also full of gentle life lessons such as:

everything will be all right in the end…if it’s not alright, then it’s not the end.

that is brilliant!

if you get a chance to view this movie, go for it – you won’t be disappointed!

whose birthday will you next celebrate among your immediate family/close friends? we enter a drought period after mom’s birthday – nothing until cutie c turns three in august!

do you have any desire to travel to india (the setting for the best exotic marigold hotel)? i do not, i must admit. call me unadventurous, but i do think india is a little too exotic for me…although i would find my beloved hot weather!

meow

happily, i am feeling much better this morning. i’m not 100%, though, because the thought of having vegetables or coffee is….unpleasant, to be polite. but it is amazing what rest, gingerale and mom’s tlc (the benefit of having a mom who lives next door!) can do.

so let’s look at what i originally wanted to chitchat about yesterday!…

~*~*~*~*~

it was meant to be.

on tuesday, i went back to delirium and my kitties were waiting for me:

my three little kittens...

while paying for my 5407th new(est) tshirt, i was chatting with the store owners, lydia and annissa. both of them are super-friendly and welcoming. in my previous two visits, lydia was very friendly (but not overbearing) and helpful. i was so surprised when they mentioned that delirium has existed for almost ten years – time flies! the delirium vibe is slightly off-beat, unique, quirky…you won’t meet yourself on the sidewalk ten times over. venture in, locals! [lydia is camera-shy or else i’d have a photo of her with the kittie-cats!]

the cats made their first public appearance when they met bailey that eve:

ok, they were a little shy...

[funny sidenote story: debbie (bailey’s *mom,* and i have been bff’s for over 12 years now – and we were friends in grades 7 & 8, too). when we got together this week, we discovered that both of us have this quirk about buying books that have been made into movies. we refuse to buy the book if it has the film depicted on the cover – we want the original edition! for example: eat pray love – > NO julia roberts version!! i think it’s great that after all this time, we can still discover new things about each other!]

~*~*~*~*~

all this recent talk about shopping reminded me of one of my favourite photos from my (newly reconstructed) baby album:

13 months old

as the story goes, mom was at zellers, with me in the shopping cart, there, as you can see. there was a photographer in-store that day – likely one of those deals where they offer to take a photo, then try to sell you a package deal. well, both mom and the photographer tried every move under the sun to get me to smile. i was having none of that! so, finally, the photographer just snapped my photo and that was the end of that!

~*~*~*~*~

american wife report:

i’m up past page 375, now. george bush charlie is being a real jerk. laura alice’s actions completely shocked me! reading is a good recover-from-the-flu past-time…i got through a good lot of pages, yesterday!

~*~*~*~*~

now, i want an iphone.

hi nicole! 🙂

also on tuesday, i met nicole, my friend-thru-sil ana, at starbucks for coffee + visiting. we enjoyed fabulous conversation. nicole has an iphone and i am in awe over its capabilities. i do like and appreciate my blackberry, but this iphone just seems very up my alley in terms of how my mind works and how visual it is. nicole also told me more about pinterest. i first heard about this super-cool online creative outlet on angela‘s blog (here’s her post with tons of details), and now thanks to nicole’s added details, i am super-intrigued. i am going to check this out…but am wary of it’s time-sucking power!

~*~*~*~*~

31 16 FLAVOURS OF AUGUST

thanks to being sick, there were no treats on wednesday, so i’m outta my own contest. sweet sixteen is where we end the challenge.

these folks understand:

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that’s not to say there’ll be no more treats this month – dad and i still have our outing of the month to look forward to, and i’ve got some fun coupons that we could use!…

pinterest? iphones? cats vs dogs? starbucks coffee? favourite treats from this month? share away!

31 Flavours of August

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Tomorrow is the first of August! You know what that means…it’s time to discuss the plans for the month. Ah, it feels good to have some concrete goals, again!

I have three top-notch, fun and unique ideas to share with you.

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Goal #1: Be a girly-girl. I do love nail polish, and I wear make-up daily. But I’m no chic diva. Casual? Sporty? Très relaxed? Those adjectives are most appropriate to describe my personal style. I want to devote more time to self-care. By that, I mean giving more than a couple of slapdash moments to skincare, hairstyling, and clothing and accessorizing myself – a little pampering. Here’s how I plan to set myself up for success:

  • give myself extra time to get ready for the day/to go out. I think I could make efficient use of even 10 more minutes, at a time!
  • place lotion bottles strategically around the Condo Casa as visual reminders to moisturize several times, daily.

i bought hairspray! and there are some of my lotion options

  • [The problem is that I really dislike when hand and body lotions make me feel sticky and greasy. But I want softer skin. It’s only for a month – I’ll grin and bear the slimyness shininess!].
  • go back to quality facial cream. I’m giving a brand that’s an oldie-but-reputedly-goodie a shot:
  • i've never used olay! might as well try the cleanser, too....

  • make Mom and/or girlfriends go shopping with me for cheap yet pretty wardrobe pieces. I have hair accessories, earrings, bracelets, rings – I just need to wear them!

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Goal #2: Blog entirely in lower case letters. now, janetha practically has the copyright on this writing style. but, if you’ve ever corresponded with me via email, blog commenting, twitter or facebook, you know that for casual communication, i never use capitals. i’ve written like this for ages and ages – it’s fast and i think it looks hip. bien sûr, if i’m writing professional or formal correspondence, i’ll follow standard grammar and punctuation rules, but i really like the look and feel of all lower-case lettering. so, this month, blog posts will look…like this! eesh, i hope i don’t forget!

at the end of the month, i’ll decide which way we’re going to swing: will we go back to the conventional, or stick with the janetha?…

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Goal #3: Enjoy a different sweet treat every single day. Cuz it’s summer, and why the heck not.

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I actually did a project of this nature about two years ago, before I had the blog. At that time, my goal was to go 100 days with a treat-of-the-day taking place each and every day. If memory serves, I made it to about Day #67 before my sweet tooth conked out. So, 31 days should be no problem-o.

Here are some more details for this round of 31 Flavours!…

  • 31 days, 31 different treats, no repeats [I can tell you straight off what a few treats will be, for sure: a Starbucks pumpkin scone, a piece of coffee cake from Coffee Culture, a Tango Palace apple square and a DQ something. Tangent: I could never do 31 flavours of ice cream because I really only like chocolate chip or heavenly hash – can you believe chocolate ice cream is really not a favourite?!].
  • because I adore using the four-star rating system, each treat will get a ranking. I’ll show you the previous day’s choice and how it fared, every day, beginning on August 2nd.
  • yes, gluten-containing products will be consumed (see above). Due to the fact that farty-bum-bums will therefore spontaneously erupt naturally occur, I’ll make sure to consume these delicacies on days when I am not venturing out into public shortly thereafter.
  • I don’t plan on baking anything myself because baking’s not my scene I want to avoid multiple servings of the same product. Thirty-one choices, remember!

So, there you have it! No reading, knitting or grocery goals for August – been there, done that. It’s time to branch out. Stay tuned!

Sweet or salty – what do you prefer? I rarely feel the urge to munch on chips, pretzels or salted nuts…I inherited the family sweet tooth but good!

Just A Little Slab’ll Do Ya

Dad and I are making great progress in working our way through the meal times of the day for our Outing of the Month project. So far in 2011, we’ve enjoyed…

breakfast

morning coffee break

lunch

…which brings us to afternoon break!

I’ve been terribly excited about today’s destination for a very long time.

Now, the weather is still like this today:

i've lost track of how many days the sky has looked like this, now...

Does it make you think of ice cream? Not really. But beggars can’t be choosers. We had much better weather last year when we enjoyed ice cream one afternoon!

Marble Slab has been in Waterloo for about two years now. The first location opened beside the University – smart move! Students + ice cream shop = sales bonanza. Recently, a second location opened in the ‘burbs of Waterloo. Families with small children + ice cream outlet = sales extravaganza, I am sure!

So, while I’d never set foot in a Marble Slab, I’d heard nothing but great reports about the creaminess of the ice cream, the incredible variety of choices for toppings, the unique customization of your ice cream. What have we been waiting for?!

Dad and I chose to hit up the University location.

Wow – sooo much to choose from!…

talk about being a kid in a candy shop!

dad and i are going to start getting a complex! do we smell or something? every time we go somewhere, we're the only customers!

I had to ask a few questions as I made my deliberations as I didn’t totally get the menu board:

as the girl explained, you get ice cream, one mix-in and your choice of waffle cone for the small, medium and large prices; i know it says that on the board. i needed verbal explanation.

Dad placed his order while I deliberated.

the girl customizing dad's selections...

Dad went with white chocolate ice cream with raspberries and caramel sauce as his mix-ins, all scooped into a waffle bowl.

I knew I wanted a chocolate mix-in…

...but which one?!

I decided upon: birthday cake ice cream with Nestle Crunch bits mixed in, scooped into a chocolate waffle cone.

the waffle cone options, alone, boggled the mind!

prepared right before my very eyes

Wow. This was one delicious treat. Marble Slab ice cream is very creamy, and their hand-mix concept is a unique marketing angle. I loved my cone! Dad raved about his combination, too.

happy campers

Yippee for yet another fantastic outing – fun with Dad, and fun slurping down my cone. I can only imagine how this ice cream hits the spot when it’s hot, humid and sunny out!

Thanks, Dad! Our outing was such a *sweet* treat!

What’s your favourite ice cream shop? I’ve always had a soft spot for Baskin Robbins and their vanilla/chocolate chip ice cream. It’s been my #1 choice since childhood.

◊ ◊ ◊ ◊ ◊

Dad’s Famous!!

hey! i know that man!

OK, not really, but he was on the 6 o-clock News the other night!

mid-interview

The feature was about the psychological effects of this rainy, dreary May weather, and it was the lead-off story of the broadcast (??).

dad’s seven seconds of fame

The behind-the-scenes scoop: Dad said they interviewed him for about three minutes, but only 10 seconds ended up being shown. Dad, a lot of your footage ended up on the cutting room floor, eh?!

these photos are pics i snapped of my tv

Way to go, Dad! It may not have been 15 minutes of fame, but we’ll take what we can get, right?!

Have you ever been interviewed on TV? I answered a “Street Beat” question a couple years ago for that segment of the nightly local news broadcast. I think I was on-screen about seven seconds, too!

◊ ◊ ◊ ◊ ◊

Sticking with our Sweet Treat theme, I made cookies last night (Recipe #10 of the Unofficial 1970 Kiki Project).

I used a tried ‘n’ true recipe because the cookies are part of a birthday present, and this recipe is a favourite!

I did make this recipe last year as part of the “40 Recipes” portion of the 1970 Kiki Project (it was recipe #1!)

Wednesday, I went over to Bulk Barn for the necessary oats. I eat the GF type, but have discovered they’re not the best for baking. I wanted exactly 2 1/3 cups oatmeal. Brainwave! I tucked my measuring cups into my knapsack so I could purchase just the amount I needed!

i could have used a third hand here - or a photographer; camera+scoops+bag+oats=a lot!

A whole $0.55 later, I was back out the door.

Here’s the recipe for these Jumbo Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies again, in case you don’t feel like clicking the link, above (Never say I am not helpful!).

(from Baker’s Chocolate Celebration Cookbook)

Jumbo Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 1/2 cups firmly packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/3 cups oats
  • 2 tsps baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 package (350g) semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup raisins

Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Add flour, oats, baking soda and salt; mix until well blended. Stir in chips and raisins. Drop dough in 1/4 cup mounds onto greased cookie sheets [I used parchment paper]. Flatten each cookie into a 2.5 inch circle. Bake at 350 degrees for about 15-20 minutes. Cool on pans 5 minutes; remove and finish cooling on racks. Makes about 20 large cookies [I got 26.5].

oops! ok, don't place your raw dough cookies too close together!

**DO use the 1/4 cup measuring cup! This is key to the popularity of this cookie!

yummy, i promise!

Happy Friday and Happy May 2-4 Long Weekend, Canadian friends!

A Day at the Beach

Sometime during the day yesterday, one of us – B or I – got the brilliant and wonderful idea that we should go up to Goderich to the beach today. Fantastico!!! Goderich is always our choice for a beach day. My grandparents had a trailer and then a cottage just outside of Goderich when I was a small child til I was well into my teens, and I have soooo many fond memories of those days! B, too, spent happy times in Goderich as a child as a great-aunt lived up there. Neat coincidence, eh!
Now B and I have our own favourite traditions for our Goderich trips; incredibly, it’s been about five years since we were last up there! All day today we kept commenting, “how could we have let it go so long without a trip up here?” Let me take you on a photo journey…both of childhood memories and of our day today.

When my brother and I were small, the family tradition was that we would leave quite early in the morning for Goderich, then stop at the McDonalds in Stratford for breakfast. McDonalds is still there!

the building wasn't quite so "flash" back in the 70's; but i bet you the breakfast menu is still the same today!

To help with the “are we there yet?” line of questioning, my mom taught us the order of towns that we would pass through on the way. It goes “Stratford, Seabringville, Mitchell, Seaforth, Clinton, Goderich.” I always chant that out to B in the car. 🙂 Today we encountered quite a bit of construction on the road, so the drive up was a bit of a test of patience. Luckily, the journey is as much a part of our day as the destination. Huron County countryside is very pictoresque:

somewhere in the middle of nowhere

(Just to note: B was the official driver today as we took his truck; I was knitting and snapping photos and retelling the tales I ALWAYS tell about me n childhood n Goderich…ahhh!:))

So we get into Goderich and the first official stop is…

still looks like it did in the '70's!

See, in the 70’s, we would go to the laundromat across the street from Culbert’s and Chris and I would get a treat AND a small BOTTLE of pop while the laundry was cookin’ up. This is the sight that greets you today upon entering:

the glass case at the front...

...and the back display...

From Culbert’s B and I must head directly to the beach. Now no joke, today was gorgeous sunshine, but it was CHIL-LY, esp on the exposed beach! We stayed on the beach just long enough for each of us to enjoy a chocolate chip donut. Holy moley, these are divine! As B says, it was worth the drive today JUST for these donuts. (And everything else in the bakery looks just as delicious, I must add).

too bad this is not a scratch n sniff blog! haha, you'll have to trust me on this one!

view from the beach across to the salt mine

Now usually, we hang out on the beach before doing our “Goderich Loop Walk,” but given the frigid rather cool temp and strong wind at that moment on the beach, we headed off for our walk.

 We always leave the truck at the beach and head up the steep hill out of the beach area. The first sight is this park:

note the bandshell at the very back of this photo...

When we were children, we’d come here Sunday evenings for the highland music performances – bagpipes are my strongest memory of these times!

Next, we pass some of my favourite cottages. I love the cosy arts n craft stylings even today. Funny that my tastes remain unchanged after 30 years!

A sign outside the front door states this is the "Lighthouse Cottage" - it's my #1 fave; note the great enclosed sunporch along the left side...

aren't the windows great on this cottage? and another covered porch...

i love the line of windows along the left of this cottage...and another porch...hmmm - maybe i have a "thing" for porches?!

oh-so-cute!...and let's say it all together: COVERED PORCH!! (and this one continues around the right side)...

Interesting to note that while a lot of the original cottages remain, many properties now feature monster homes. It’s actually a wonderful mix of old and new on this walk.

In between the home viewing, we come to Lighthouse Park. Now I get really excited in my storytelling to B!! 🙂 See, the tradition in childhood with this location is that once per vacation, we would stop at Kentucky Fried Chicken (it wasn’t politically incorrect to market chicken as FRIED in the ’70’s!) and pick up chicken and fries and eat a picnic supper at the lighthouse.

KFC is still there today!!

Lighthouse Park - note the picnic table - i think that is the exact one that was there when i was small!!!

Chris and I luuuuuuvvvvved Lighthouse Park because we turned the nautical themed accents into a playground!

we would pretend the cannon was a rodeo horse...

the anchor was our balance beam...

...and we were warned to not get too close to the cliff edge!

Now back to our Goderich Loop Walk….to descend, we take a gazillion stairs down, then I make B hike back up so I can count the stairs. B wishes I would remember the number from the last walk and then he wouldn’t have to “do the stairs” – it’s always a good chuckle!

there are 143 steps - now the number is on record!

 Back down at the bottom, you are at the “new” beach (well, it was developed in the mid-80’s so it was the NEW BEACH for us back then) and YOU MUST ALWAYS BOYCOTT THIS BEACH! You must always beach it at the OLD and ORIGINAL part of the beach (which I will show you eventually). Now, funny enough, the NEW and BAD end of the beach is called…

yes, the same as brother's name - but it's still NOT THE BEACH WE ALWAYS WENT TO!!!

Now there is a lovely boardwalk that goes from St Christopher’s back to the original end of the beach:

there were a few people walking today but not many...

Back at “our” end of the beach…sadly, the original French Fry Hut no longer stands. They honestly had the best handcut, homemade french fries in the entire universe (right, Dad?!). It has been replaced with a concrete structure. The benefit, at least, is that the washrooms are super clean, super modern, and wayyy better than the old wooden, sandy ones. And the hut still sells french fries!

the new structure is in the same location as the old one...

Another childhood play opp for Chris and me: swinging on the “ropes” and trying to step up and balance on them!

original chain links, new boardwalk...

Next, we must visit the pier. The pier divides the beach from the salt mines. Today there were no big ships in port. Chris and I were always beside ourselves with joy and glee as kids if there was a big ship in…

warning part 2: we were always told to KEEP BACK FROM THE EDGE!!!

looking back at the beach...

Here I’ll insert the tale I always relate to B while we’re on the end of the pier: “it was in this location that I blew a bubble for the very first time. It was purple Bubble Yum and our family had come out here for an evening stroll.” (insert B rolling his eyes and commenting “I don’t think I’ve ever heard that one before…”) hardy har har, B!!

as a child and now, it boggled/boggles my mind that they mine salt UNDER the lake!!!can you see the lighthouse, home of the KFC picnic?!

After our walk today, the weather had warmed up enough that we could sit out on the beach. You know it’s still cool, though, if B even keeps on his long sleeve shirt. We marvelled over the crazy kids (high school-ish) swimming and hanging out in bikinis and surfer shorts. Yea, we’re old.
Tangent: I won’t lie to you here: for the first time since I gave up Diet Coke back on April 19th, I totally craved my old ex-favourite beverage…something about sitting out on the beach with my knitting, soaking up the sun…water just is not the same. I honestly debated “just one,” but decided not to. And now later, I am glad I didn’t cave in!
The next thing we must do is go up to the centre of town. Goderich boasts it is the “Prettiest Town in Canada,” and I don’t blame them. The downtown is spic n span, there are no vacant storefronts (a BIG change from the ’70s and ’80s), people are friendly. The downtown configuration is unique: Chris and I named it “The Big Wheel” because it’s configured exactly like a wheel, with a circular road around downtown and spokes radiating out of it:

the courthouse or some such important building is located in the centre of the wheel...

one way only around the wheel!

Today B and I did our usual lap around the wheel. The ultimate destination: Fincher’s!!! Home of the best selection of magazines, ever!

sign looks a bit 1950's, eh! love that!!!

 Usually I buy a magazine, but did not today…

b kept up the tradition by getting "backpacker" magazine today...

 I spotted this display of journals. Notice what caught my eye?!

it was the only cardinal journal there - coincidence? i think not!!!

And after that, we go home.
(Now I should be clear on one thing: the beaches at Goderich will never make a Top 10 Ontario beaches list or anything – both St Christopher’s and “my” original end have grainy sand and are not large…but the memories both from childhood and from trips up in past years with B make it my favourite beach day location).
Both B and I agree that we really should make a great effort to get back up here for a day in August. Because we know that The Big Wheel, Culbert’s, Fincher’s, The Pier await! Plus B just really wants to hear my stories again! 🙂

Friday Photos: …We All Scream For!…

There’s really only one thing you can do on a Friday afternoon, in the middle of June, on a day that looks like this:

live, from Uptown Waterloo, IT'S FRIDAY AFTERNOON!!!!

…plus, this sign has been tormenting me for weeks now…

it was worse when they had the flavours listed!!

So I grabbed my girl Tina…

Tina's always ready to rock... 🙂

…and lined up an…ICE CREAM DATE!!!

Since B-man is out of town, you have one guess as to who was my ready-and-willing sidekick…

Dad's skills as a "40 Recipes" taste-tester and reviewer easily transfer to ice cream!

Coffee Culture on King Street was the meet-up spot…

we had to sit outside on such a great day!

Who needs 31 flavours when the eight on offer are all delightful?

my choice: the bottom right hand corner...

After much debate, Dad chose the Espresso Chip and I got Triple Chocolate Brownie. Rolo was in the running right to the end, but I’m not much of a caramel fan, so it missed the cut.

no comment needed!

Just perfect. We agreed that the ice cream flavours, textures (and price!) were A+. Mom, as the officially neutral 3rd party, declared the Triple Chocolate Brownie to be the winner by a smidge.

Tina very much enjoyed herself, too.

 (BTW, you are on the right blog site – haha! Yes, I updated the background – I like it!)