Diner en Blanc

July 30, 2014

So a while back my friend Cory asked me if I wanted to go to the Diner en Blanc with him. I said, sure!

It all seemed novel, until I realized I had zero white clothes. So I bought a dress (thanks, GAP). Then I realized you had to bring your own... EVERYTHING. 

As the day approached, I started to dread it. What a pain. It's a fancy dinner where you actually do all the work! We had to get a specifically sized table, bring real stemware and china... and the morning of the dinner we had thunderstorms. JUST GREAT. 

I had a poo-poo attitude about the whole thing, but Cory and I just went ahead and did it. We brought clear umbrellas, our two picnic baskets full of goodies, and skepticism. 

It turns out quite well! Cory and I both seem to be the prepared, outdoorsy-type people, and we had our rig up and ready to go in record time. I was really proud of our efficiency and preparedness!

I also started the evening accidentally shooting on Manual on my camera. But, the effects look really awesome! I'm sad that I fixed the camera and then everything started looking much more ordinary. 

This was the part where I fixed the camera. Also the part where it started to rain while we are in line for our busses to take us to the secret location. 

Once we got there, we got it all set up!

The china is vintage Limoges, as are those little champagne glasses.
And yes, Cory painted pineapples white and created our centrepieces out of them. He is a genius.  

I actually told him I thought he was crazy, but I am happy to admit that I was wrong. The pineapples were truly fabulous. 

I can't remember if these photos of us were taken before or after the rain - We survived!

As did everybody else.

I even brought a little candle. 

Then, there were sparklers!

And I take my words back - It was a pretty swell time and the weird weather was somewhat of an adventure... I'd probably do it again!

A 34th Birthday

July 29, 2014

I mentioned my little birthday party in the most recent weekender, but I had a few pictures of the place that I wanted to share. 

I wasn't even sure I wanted to have a party at all. Things have been really busy (my life is a little ridiculous); I feel like I'm on and entertaining all the time; and, the exterior of my house is currently under renovation so I'm logistically not up for hosting. 

Cory Christopher to the rescue! 

He made up the space so perfectly, and even my tiniest guests were pleased to arrive. 

He painted bike rims for me! Which, apparently, make for great flower arrangement accessories.

Some were hung.

And we dumped a bunch of drinks at the bar. Extra martiny (small martinis) ingredients was brought and created by Sean. 

 Most of the guests were crowded around the bar and the door, but a select few of us banded together to rock out.

Have I ever mentioned my love for Rock Band?


So here I am with my rock face, with Ryan, Nick, and my brother, Simon!

Then Nick had rock face.

And we rejoiced, realizing we had finished the song without being booed off stage.

I think it was one of the best birthday parties I have ever had. Somebody else made the place clean and beautiful, while I just did a food and drink run (you had the choice of eating samosas and um… samosas). 

I got to wear shorts and a t-shirt. 

It was also fun to see some of my friends meet my other friends for the first time - Swell! All the fine people of the world must surely group together, right?

I'm another year older and (hopefully) wiser, but I still feel young! 

Party on, right?

Here we go. 


July 22, 2014

This weekend featured lots of time out of town, at two different lakes! 

As you can see up there, we were out at the lake in our little trailer. We brought out the bikes (I'm leaving my foldy there) and took the kids for ice cream. 

Earlier in the weekend, we were at a friend's cabin at Pigeon lake. The kids had a marvellous time together! There was garlic bread, monopoly, sidewalk chalk, and a splashy pool. 

After some time there, we headed to our home away from home and I got to break out the fantastic coasters I got for my birthday!

I didn't pack one stick or ounce of makeup. Including lip stuff! I am almost never without it. I decided that this time away at the lake just needed to be 100% natural. 

Gave me more time to hang out and feed Alice pretzels for the first time. 

She was skeptical!

 We went out on boats and saved bats from bathrooms.

Enjoyed shade under my little striped umbrella and watched the kids kick the soccer ball around.

Gave new life to old beach toys from another family whose kids are all teenagers now.

 And had many noisy and quiet times in the trailer. Alice enjoyed her menagerie and I enjoyed using the toaster oven.

 One evening we built a fire and made s'mores. Dinner was cooked on a BBQ. There were no bedtimes and everybody slept in a sleeping bag. I also finished a book!

This is our version of a family vacation. 

Flashback Friday!

Late again! Summer keeps me busy and not in front of the computer as much as I'm used to.

Last week, I had a birthday party! Cory Christopher's studio was the perfect place for my fete, and I got to eat samosas and drink beer with a room full of 100% people that I know and love. I'm an extrovert by nature, and I'm always happy to make new friends. But, on the occasion of my birthday, I wanted to be as casual as possible. It was perfect!

Earlier in the week I was pedalling around, as is my way.

 Dexter's best friend from school came over for a playdate.

Alice played with buckets and baby ducks while Dexter had his swimming lesson.

And then more riding around, and this time in my Poppy Barleys! I gave a little talk on cycling at the Yellowhead Brewery for Urban Systems. People were very kind and listened intently (thank you).

Later in the week Cory and I started fretting about the Diner en Blanc.

 Cory's job was to deal with the set up and decor. My job was to take care of tableware and picnic. Obviously I packed my Laguiole pocket knife for cheese and fruit al fresco.

 Then, the big day came. It was raining all day long. And I fretted all day long. Many times I considered ditching the whole thing. I had to buy a white dress! I didn't even wear a white dress for my wedding. But in the end, with the rain and all - WE DID IT!

 I was so proud of our table, and of our organization in general. Our picnic baskets were well stocked and we got our table set up and gorgeous in zero time flat.

 Then… my birthday party! Cory hung a bike for me. I loved it.

And the florals. My goodness. 

The generous notes of love and kindness were very touching. 

And it was a perfect top off to a busy busy week. Eek!


July 14, 2014

Oh man, a hot weekend. Hot hot hot!

The kids and I strolled down to the train for a trip to the market.

After a while, Alice decided she was not going to sit with the rest of us and chose to go it alone.

After our browsing and strolling, the kids were parched, so we got them some lemonade. Look at that focus!

Then it was lake time.

It's amazing how quickly we transform from city people to lake people. I've been wearing the same denim cut offs (overalls) repeatedly, and Alice has no qualms about donning her older brother's hand me downs. 

The kids had lots of time frolicking on the lawn with beach balls, we went for a sale, there was BBQ.

An ideal weekend.

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