Woman in Real Life:The Art of the Everyday

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Escape The Holiday Shopping Chaos as an #AvionVIP

What do you think is worse - a crowded mall before Christmas or driving to that very same mall with a couple of kids? I think it's a toss-up. Last time we drove to the mall as a family, my daughter must have said "Mom" about a thousand times. Yet she somehow still managed to fight with her brother too. (The same brother who was poking me through the space in the car seat just at neck/shoulder level.) The kids are really into "punch buggy no punch backs" right now. And then they fight over who did it first. (Is it just me or are Volkswagen Beetles experiencing a resurgence in popularity? I have the bruised shoulder to prove it!)

It kind of makes you want to give up and do your shopping online. But sometimes (especially with a long holiday gift list) you need to browse shops in person for ideas. And, as Christmas approaches, you might worry about items being shipped to your home in time.

Here's where RBC Avion cardholders have the advantage. The RBC Avion Holiday Boutique at Toronto's Yorkdale Shopping Centre is a place that contrasts starkly with the stressful car ride to the mall and the chaotic mall full of holiday shoppers itself.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

What I Ate Wednesday

I'm writing this on Tuesday night, having just this evening consumed an all-you-can-eat sushi dinner. My son is away on a school trip for the night and my daughter is at dance classes, so the husband and I decided to visit a fave sushi restaurant. And gorge ourselves to the gills. And then we went to Costco. Where I found it difficult to even look at food, nevermind buy it. But we still managed to spend beaucoup de dollars. Costco is magical that way.

Needless to say, I'm having trouble looking at these food pics, especially the sushi ones that follow. But I will endure. This morning I made some delicious blueberry pancakes using a recipe from Chloe's Kitchen. I love pancakes, but don't want to discuss them for the moment.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Silver Plate Treasures & Vintage Bliss Tuesdays Linky Party #11

As I mentioned in last week's Vintage Bliss Tuesdays post, I came away with a few pairs of matching items on my recent visit to Goodwill. I shared a look at a pair of green vases last week. Here is the second pairing - two lovely aged and silver-plated items.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Gifts for Kids: SWEETS KENDAMAS (giveaway)

Sweets Kendamas

Sweets Kendamas

As soon as I mentioned the possibility of doing a holiday gift guide again this year on the blog, my son began his campaign to have me include this very cool toy. To be honest I had no clue what a kendama was. If you are similarly clueless, here it is, straight from Wikipedia: The kendama is a traditional Japanese toy consisting of a ken (sword) and tama (ball) connected by a string. The ken has three cups and a spike which fits into the hole in the ball. Basic kendama tricks consist of catching the ball in the cups and on the spike, however a huge variety of kendama tricks can be performed by juggling the ball between the cups, balancing it in various positions on the ken, balancing the ken on the ball and juggling the kendama.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

What I Ate Wednesday

Outside my window it already looks like it's the middle of winter - snow on the ground and no evidence of sunshine. But I can't complain - I hear they're getting hammered with snow in Buffalo today. It's a bit early for hibernation still, but you'll find me staying inside whenever possible nevertheless. Staying inside and eating. But hopefully not excessively.

We have pasta at least once a week in our house. I think my husband had it almost every day growing up in an Italian family. I am good with having pasta regularly, especially if we alter the sauce a bit. One time we might add chickpeas, another time a handful of red lentils. This week I spotted Gardein vegan "meatballs" in the freezer section at the health food store. I'm a Gardein fan so I really wanted to give them a try. The Gardein meatballs are a bit larger in size than any vegan meatballs I've tried before. They are firm and dense and I enjoyed the texture. I spotted some fennel seeds in the mix. Because I chose to cook the meatballs in my sauce, the whole sauce was infused with the taste of the fennel and other spices from the meatballs. I'm not going to say it was my favourite flavour - I'd probably cook the vegan meatballs separately next time.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Green Vases & Vintage Bliss Tuesdays Linky Party #10

This is an anniversary post of sorts. I mean, 10 Vintage Bliss Tuesdays already? I had to go back through them to see if I counted wrong. How quickly time seems to pass when you number your posts! Anyway, thanks for partying with me all these weeks. I love checking out the thrifty finds that people link up.

I visited the Goodwill with my husband on the weekend. It was a quick trip round the store about half an hour before closing. Of course I concentrated on the housewares, as I always do. Looking through clothes just seems too overwhelming to me. So much crap to look through to get to the good stuff! I bought pairs of items, all matched in colour. Today I'm sharing a look at the first pairing. One, this cute little green and brown pottery vase.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

GIFTS MADE EASY with Shoppers Drug Mart

I hope you enjoyed a fulfilling October, rich with pumpkin spice lattes, leafy fall walks in the woods and Halloween goodies. Now that this lovely month is behind us, it’s on to the festive holiday season. It’s definitely not too early to think about holiday gift giving. Get the jump on it now so you can enjoy more leisure time with friends and family come December.

This might just be a case of “do as I say, not as I do,” because I’m often dashing off to the store a couple of days before Christmas for those last few gifts on my list. Fortunately, we have a Shoppers Drug Mart just around the corner. It’s open late too, so it’s definitely a convenient place for me to shop, last minute or not.

Still, I’d like to think that one year I’ll get it together and have all my Christmas shopping finished early. Shoppers Drug Mart is once again here to help with its GIFTS MADE EASY in-store and through the online gift finder. Whether for family, friends, teachers, neighbours or school bus drivers, Shoppers Drug Mart has the perfect gift.