Wednesday

Udon Noodles with Eggplant and Mango


This recipe is mighty tasty. The picture doesn't do justice to the uniquely vibrant flavours... sweet, tangy, spicy, musky... I can't quite put my finger on what exactly makes it so darn delicious, but trust me, it is!

Read on for the how to.....

Tuesday

A Lack of Colour....


 I don't know if it's the winter blues... or maybe spring fever, 
but all I can say is that am I missing colour these days.


I guess that's why I'm smitten with these bright Loeffler Randall sandals,


And all these outfits with unexpected splashes of colour, from Madewell's Spring Lookbook...






Dear spring, please come soon!

Monday

Weekend Moments... settling back in, up north


Oh and what a wonderful weekend it was!
And it all started with a wild blueberry pancakes... how all weekends should start, in my opinion.


I managed to recussitate my house plants after having abandoned them for 2 1/2 weeks. Miraculously, they seem to have enjoyed the lack of attention and are in full bloom. 
I re-started my sprouting too. 
Things are starting to get back in order around here.



Yup, it's back to life as usual up here in the north. 
Minus 30-degree weather, frozen toes and eyelashes, cross-country skiing with random stray dogs. 
Such is life up here, and it's good to be back.



On Sunday night we had friends over for dinner and I made my decadent creme brûlée. Man, that stuff it lethally good!


 Everyone had fun burning their own sugar with our mini blow torch. 
(it really is a lot of fun to use!)


I hope you had a wonderful weekend.
oxo
Vanessa.

Friday

Hooray for the weekend, and for being back up north!


Oh I'm just thrilled that it's Friday! And I'm so happy to be back here in the north.
I surprised myself with how much I missed it here.  
I miss the quiet. I miss the sunsets. I miss cross-country skiing through the beautiful forests.

While I'm up here, I tend to spend so much time missing the city and all it's little luxuries, that I  forget how amazing it truly is up here.

And look what was waiting for us when we got home... two beautiful pairs of hand-stitched Cree moccasins, his & her style. 
Aren't they gorgeous?!


 And I won't be taking them off until Monday morning ; )


Have a wonderful weekend!
oxo

Thursday

Crispy Tofu with Sesame Soy Cabbage


I discovered the secret to making crispy-on-the-outside/tempura-style silken tofu that you get in Japanese restaurants, without the actual deep-frying.

And the secret is... Panko, aka Japanese bread crumbs.

It's a revelation (if you like tofu, that is)!
Read on for the how to....

Tuesday

The Little Gas Tank Trick...


Have you ever pulled into a gas station in a rental car (or even your own car) and had to stick your head out of the window to check which side the gas tank is on???

Well, did you know there's a little arrow right on your dashboard that tells you?


or it might look like this.....

Isn't that cool! I personally never knew there was another way (aside from the head-out-the-window technique!)

ps: thanks Angela for showing us this!

Monday

Weekend Moments in Photos & iPhotos


We spent the weekend with my lovely family out in the country, and on Saturday we all hit the slopes for the first time this winter.


We returned home after a full day on the mountain and had a decadent après-ski 
of delicious cheeses and wine. 
Have you have tried fresh parmesan, walnuts & honey?... they taste amazing together!

 And because that wasn't indulgent enough, we then had chocolate fondu for dessert. And of course (as it always is in my family) we ended with a very spirited Ticket-to-Ride game 
(the best board game EVER, btw).

I hope you had a lovely weekend as well.
We are headed back up north this morning, and I am very much looking forward to being back.
I've had my fill of the city (for now), and those northern lights are calling my name...

oxo
Vanessa

Friday

Last Weekend in the City....


So our 2 week vacation has quickly come to an end, and sadly this is our last weekend in Montreal before we head back up north. 
Although it's really not that sad at all... I'm actually looking forward to being back in that beautiful remoteness. The city can be exhausting after a while.

Either way, we're trying to make the most of our last few days here.
And tomorrow we are going skiing with my family.

Speaking of skiing....
My friend Mark showed me this incredible ski video the other day. 
It's unexpectedly beautiful, and inspiring, and the cinematography is amazing.
It's definitely worth watching this little clip, which is an excerpt from the award-winning full-length film, All. I. Can.


I wish you a wonderful weekend.
oxo
Vanessa.

Thursday

Riding on Trains...


I took the train from Toronto to Montreal this morning for the first time in my life.
(I don't know why I've never done that before, 
considering the amount of times we fly or drive this route)

Anyway it was a thoroughly enjoyable experience. 
No line-ups, no crazy security checks, no removing of belts or shoes.
There was coffee and breakfast, seats that recline, and free wi-fi for the entire journey. 
I think I am now a converted train-person.

Shoe Crush: Ballerina Slippers by Repetto Paris


Ever since I saw these authentic ballet slippers from Repetto Paris in a Montreal store I can't stop thinking about them. I've never felt leather so soft before. 
They may look like ordinary ballet flats, but they're not.

Holding them in my hand, I became overwhelmed with the urge to ditch my stethoscope and join the ballet.
(or at least prance around the hospital wearing these delicate beauties!)

I'm smitten.




Wednesday

Julianne Moore's little New York City garden



 I love the secluded, secret garden feel of this townhouse garden in the West Village
... which just happens to belong to actress Julianne Moore.

I love the hanging garden along the townhouse's brick wall.
I love how the entire garden is made of potted greens and ivy. 
It's so simple, and unpretentious, and yet so beautiful.





Garden designed by Brian Sawyer.

Tuesday

Music worth falling in love for...


I'm a little obsessed with The Kills these days. And today they released a new EP, with this beautiful Patsy Cline cover... just in time for Valentines.
Have a listen, it's gorgeous!

Happy Valentines Day, everyone!


Valentine's day is a bit of a bizarre holiday, almost controversial. 

But at it's core, it's beautiful....
A day that celebrates love, well there's nothing wrong with that!

I wish you all love in your lives, and I am grateful (today and everyday) for the love in mine.
oxo

Monday

Weekend Moments: vacation sure is sweet!


So we've been getting some much needed R&R in Naples, Florida these past few days. 
We're here with some friends of ours, and we've discovered that travelling with another couple is such a refreshing way to vacation. We've been making meals together at nights, playing board games and soaking away in the hot-tub. 
It's been fun to share it all with friends.



 We've been lazing around the beach, and watching the crazy kamikaze pelicans go dive-bomb fishing into the gulf.

 We strolled through Big Cypress National Preserve to see some everglade wildlife, 
and to show our friends that swamps can be beautiful : )



It actually got pretty cool out this weekend... I guess Florida is hit or miss that way in winter. 
But it was still 45 degrees warmer than home, so I'm not complaining!



It's been a relaxing little getaway, and I feel so grateful for all this glorious sunshine. 
I think I really needed it.

We're actually cutting our vacation short and heading to Toronto today to visit my husband's grandmother who is unfortunately in the hospital.

If I don't have time to tell you tomorrow, I wish you a happy valentine's day : )
oxo
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