Blue Rodeo and CNE Date Night

Evan and I had tickets to see Blue Rodeo on Saturday night at the Molson Amp (again, I feel like I live there) and because you have to walk through the Canadian National Exhibition grounds to get to the concert venue we got into the CNE for free! aka the Ex. aka where all the crazy food is!!!

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The CNE only runs the last two weeks of summer, until Labour Day, and it is a quintessential Toronto summer activity. I used to go for years with my Nana when I was younger and she would go on all the rides with me! These days I prefer to check out the food situation – the food building is ridiculous. I was completely overstimulated and overwhelmed in there. I didn’t know where to look, let alone what to eat. I wrote a post last year on Buzzfeed about all the crazy foods. They add new food every year (and it keeps getting crazier) but they still had the old favourites, like the cronut and donut burgers that were all the rage a few years ago.

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That churro cheeseburger might be new though. And pizza in a cone.

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I guess I’m falling for the novelty of it because I do quite like the idea of pizza in a cone.

Evan and I did a lap of the perimeter and settled on sharing snow crab fries to start.

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Ehh, overrated. Too many fries, not enough crab. The crab was good but it was so skimpy that I can’t recommend for $11. Keep walkin.

Keel walkin right on over to the Vienna food stall with the POUTINE BALLS!!!!

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This was worth every penny. Little balls of mashed potato and cheese, deep fried and served with cheese curds and gravy. OH GOD YES. That was as good as it looks. Maybe even better than it looks. No regrets!

As we were walking out we passed the Japanese street food booth and this caught our eye… the RAMEN BURGER.

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That is a burger with ramen noodles as the bun. What a dream. I don’t know how you say no to that, so we got it to share. Really good. Kind of weird, but weirdly delicious. 100% would eat again.

After all the eating we walked around the grounds for a bit before heading over to the concert.

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Blue Rodeo was wonderful but seeing them on Saturday night meant we were missing the last Tragically Hip concert, which I was initially a bit bummed about. I have seen the Hip before a long time ago, but I know watching it would have been such an amazing and emotional experience. Although maybe for the best because I couldn’t even watch a commercial about the concert without tearing up…

I’m aware I have a lot of American readers (like, mostly American somehow) so just in case you’re not up to speed – the Tragically Hip is a Canadian rock band that is SUPER popular here in Canada. Strangely they don’t seem to have garnered much of a following outside of our country, but this means that we Canadians have been able to keep them to ourselves for all these years and we feel sort of protective towards them. They are ours. You might know Ahead By A Century.

Or maybe Bobcaygeon? Probably my favourite song to listen to at the cottage!

Ah, they just remind me of summers growing up.

Gord Downie, the lead singer of the Hip, was diagnosed with Glioblastoma (an aggressive form of incurable brain cancer) back in December, and so they announced they were going to do a final Canadian tour this summer.  They played three shows in Toronto a couple weeks ago and their last concert was Saturday night in their hometown of Kingston, Ontario. I can’t imagine traveling and performing like Gord has been over the last couple months while suffering from brain cancer. Truly amazing.

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Because this was such a big deal and so many people wanted to watch, the CBC (our national broadcaster, similar to NBC) decided to stream the concert live for the entire country. This bumped out Olympics prime time, and what I think is the most impressive thing, they streamed it without any commercials! CLASS. ACT. There were viewing parties all over the country, in bars, in parks, in homes, everywhere, and like a third of our entire population was watching live. Nuts! Our Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was even there sporting a Hip shirt and a Canadian tuxedo! Here’s a good article about the whole thing. I think it was amazing that we can rally together like that for a rock band. It makes me very, very proud to be Canadian.

Anyway, so we were at Blue Rodeo and missed the Hip party. But that’s okay, we plan on watching it later and making a night of it. And Blue Rodeo was so good! They actually played Bobcaygeon in a very fitting (Blue Rodeo is also popular mostly in Canada, although maybe not quite on the same scale) and VERY emotional tribute to the Hip, while they showed CBC footage of the concert on their screens.

They also played Lost Together, my very very fave of theirs.

Evan and I slow danced during this and I was basically melting the entire time. Also Try, Hasn’t Hit Me Yet, and Five Days In May. So many of their hits. Hasn’t Hit Me Yet was also a pretty emotional experience, as it was the last song they played and this was the last concert Blue Rodeo would be playing with Bob Egan, their longtime pedal steel player (who is super impressive) because he’s leaving the band to pursue his lifelong dream of becoming a librarian. I kid you not. They got the crowd to sing the first two verses of the song to Bob and you could just see him tearing up and ah. It was happy sad. I may have cried. You go fulfill your dreams and be the best librarian, Bob! Here’s that moment live (they actually start singing at about 2.40 in the below video):

Bob Egan SLAYS that steel!!! Evan and I loved them live and had such a good time.

We walked back through the CNE grounds when the concert was over, and it was all I could do to not get everything on these signs…

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I heard there were deep fried Reese’s peanut butter cups and I wanted them so bad but I couldn’t find them anywhere! I’m going back next week so I am making it my mission to find them. Instead I got an ice cream cone. Maybe for the best.

I also really wanted a little Pikachu. Evan is really good at games, as you may know, so I thought this could actually happen…

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We were wandering through the midway looking for a game Evan could easily win, when we came across the balloon darts game. Done. Evan was all “what do I have to do to win a Pikachu?” they gave him 8 darts and told him he needed to hit a balloon on every single throw. He not only did that, he got so cocky he started calling the balloons like he was playing pool. He’d be like “PINK! Bottom left! Yellow, top right!” I was dying. I got my Pikachu!

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And then we went on the gondola ride that goes over the entire park.

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He is not a ride fan so it’s the only one he’ll go on. Even that was almost too much for him, and it moves slowly! I get it, carnival rides arrive in a truck and are put together on site so I understand the apprehension about that (although I think the gondola is up all year). Gimme all the rides though, I love it. Minus the Zipper. No thanks.

It was quite the date night!

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The Summer of Concerts

I have been fortunate enough to make it to a lot of concerts this summer. Well, this year really, as I saw Death Cab for Cutie and Metric and then Garth Brooks back in March. I don’t know what is going on because typically I make it to maybe one concert a year, but this year a lot of my bucket list bands have been playing and I felt like I couldn’t miss them!

Back in June I scored some sweet tickets to Mumford & Sons at the Molson Amphitheatre in Toronto. I actually tried to get tickets the day they went on sale and was in queue for about an hour before the sale happened but somehow they were sold out immediately. I was pretty bummed about it, they’re on my must-see list. But wait! My friend Ciara at work follows Mumford & Sons on Facebook and a few weeks before the concert they announced on their page they were releasing more tickets. She came screaming over to my cubicle and told me to get on it, so I did, and I scored two tickets in the 200 section! Best seats I’ve ever had at the Molson Amp (well, minus floor for Blink182 back in high school).

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My pal Sherrie and I had such a good time at Death Cab for Cutie and Metric (like THE BEST time, I am still embarrassed at our scream-singing Snapchats from that night) I promised her the next concert I went to I would take her. She was excited.

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We made friends with two ladies before the concert while we were eating our poutine, one was also named Sherrie (but spelled Sheri).

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I think you can tell who the two Sherries are by their sass faces.

It was another amazing time. Mumford & Sons was so, so good. SO GOOD!!!

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I just loved them.

Video from my instagram:

The first song I loved by them. #littlelionman #mumfordandsons

A video posted by Lindsey Evanoff (@happyorhungry) on

Sherrie makes a nice appearance at the end, haha.

The next concert was the Lumineers with my bestie! I scored us tickets through a radio presale for her birthday, once again at the Molson Amphitheatre.

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She is the one who introduced me to the Lumineers years ago when they first arrived on the scene, so it was fitting that I saw them with her.

Our seats weren’t even that great even though I got the presale, but not bad.

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The Molson Amp is my favourite concert venue, especially for summer concerts ’cause it’s fun being outside. And I really don’t think there is a bad seat – even the lawn seats aren’t too shabby. We were very excited.

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Ho Hey!

I am just loving their new album, especially Cleopatra, Ophelia and Sleep On The Floor. They played a bunch from it, and all their old faves. They were amazing and we had the best time. 100% would go again.

Next up, Evan got me tickets to see Bryan Adams for Christmas!

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Gahh, I just love him. Bryan Adams, I mean. Well, and Evan too.

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That Bryan is still a machine. He played a lot off his new album which I wasn’t super familiar with, but I like to do concert research when I’m seeing someone and I’ll usually listen to their new album as well as go through their setlist (setlist.fm is the best for this) to see what they usually play during their show. Bryan played allllll the classics: Can’t Stop This Thing We Started, Please Forgive Me, Run To You, Summer Of ’69 (my dance floor air guitar jam), All For Love, Everything I Do (I totally serenaded this to Evan). Ah, it was so great. Just a Canadian classic.

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Oh that song makes me melt. Evan and I slow danced during it and it was maybe one of the most romantic moments of my life. And also ridiculous because I was screaming the lyrics in his ear. I also saw my friend Melissa there, totally sobbed through her first dance at her wedding last November because it was to this song. One of my all time faves.

So another great concert and I can cross Bryan Adams off the ol’ bucket list.

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Love you Bryan!!!

Two weeks later we were back at Molson Amp for Collective Soul and Goo Goo Dolls! With my dad! (aka Bobby)

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One of my dad’s very favourite bands is Collective Soul. I remember blasting Heavy in his disc man (hooked up to the tape deck) in his old white Lumina. So, for his birthday Evan and I got him tickets. Collective Soul was opening for the Goo Goo Dolls but they still had a great set and played all their hits, and stuff from their new album which I am really loving. I don’t know if it’s Bobby’s influence, but I freakin’ love Collective Soul. They really do have some great classic songs.

Like Shine, which may bring a tear to my eye…

And December…

And The World I Know, and Heavy. I was loving.

And my dad was LOVING HIS LIFE. I looked over at him at one point and I feel like he was about to cry with joy. Collective Soul is actually the first concert I ever went to, they played with the Cranberries also at Molson Amphitheatre, and my dad took me with my friends Dawn, Leanne and Julie. We sat on a patio overlooking the stage (no longer there) and convinced these guys to buy us screwdrivers when my dad wasn’t paying attention. Oh, memories.

My only complaint about Collective Soul is that their voice audio was kind of low, but it was fine for the Goo Goo Dolls, so I don’t know what was going on there.

Between sets we met up with my friend Melissa’s (mentioned above) sister Katie and hung out for a bit on the patio with her and her friend. Melissa and Katie grew up near us and my dad hasn’t seen her since she was maybe 12, so they had quite the reunion.

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I was pretty happy to see Goo Goo Dolls too. I don’t know if I would have specifically sought them out to see but they were definitely a nice bonus.

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They played a lot of stuff from their new album, which I only vaguely knew, but you know they played the faves. Name, for one. And it was pretty amazing.

My dad really likes Iris also, so he was happy to see that. Afterwards we were quizzing my dad on who he’s seen in concert. So many legendary bands! Led Zeppelin, Fleetwood Mac, The Guess Who (several times), Pink Floyd, Genesis, Neil Young (with Crosby Stills and Nash), Rush, Jethro Tull, Tom Petty, Deep Purple, Steely Dan, Emerson Lake & Palmer, The Stones, The Band, etc. Just living the dream in the 70s!

So, summer’s been concert heavy and I have no regrets. I’m just channeling my inner Bobby. Gotta do it while I’m young! Actually this weekend Evan and I are back at Molson Amphitheatre to see Blue Rodeo, another iconic Canadian band. Can’t wait to hear Lost Together and Five Days In May in person!

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Summer Reading

I’ve been driving to work this summer instead of taking transit so my reading time has been cut down significantly…but I haven’t done a books update all summer so I have a few to talk about!

In a Dark Dark Wood by Ruth Ware

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Synopsis:

In a dark, dark wood

Nora hasn’t seen Clare for ten years. Not since Nora walked out of school one day and never went back.

There was a dark, dark house

Until, out of the blue, an invitation to Clare’s hen do arrives. Is this a chance for Nora to finally put her past behind her?

And in the dark, dark house there was a dark, dark room

But something goes wrong. Very wrong.

And in the dark, dark room….

Some things can’t stay secret for ever.

Ehh, I didn’t love it. I was pretty disappointed actually because I felt like it had the opportunity to be awesome but it fell flat for me. I didn’t find anything about it new or innovative. It sort of reminded me of a RL Stine Fear Street novel or a Christopher Pike book from back in the day, but honestly it was not as thrilling and the plot wasn’t as good. The characters felt sort of flimsy to me and odd in an unrealistic way, especially the main character. I did not enjoy her at all. It wasn’t terrible, but it was not a favourite of mine.

The Good Girl by Mary Kubica

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Synopsis:

One night, Mia Dennett enters a bar to meet her on-again, off-again boyfriend. But when he doesn’t show, she unwisely leaves with an enigmatic stranger. At first Colin Thatcher seems like a safe one-night stand. But following Colin home will turn out to be the worst mistake of Mia’s life.

When Colin decides to hide Mia in a secluded cabin in rural Minnesota instead of delivering her to his employers, Mia’s mother, Eve, and detective Gabe Hoffman will stop at nothing to find them. But no one could have predicted the emotional entanglements that eventually cause this family’s world to shatter.

I really liked this! It was a refreshing read after that last book. Like many books in this genre recently, it’s been compared to Gone Girl which…just stop. Stop doing that. Not every book with a little bit of suspense is like Gone Girl. But it wasn’t what I was expecting at all, it felt fresh and different, and I got really into it. I definitely enjoyed. I’m also impressed it was Mary Kubica’s debut novel.

The Martian by Andy Weir

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Synopsis:

Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars.

Now, he’s sure he’ll be the first person to die there.

After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate the planet while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded on Mars’ surface, completely alone, with no way to signal Earth that he’s alive. And even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone years before a rescue could arrive.

Chances are, though, Mark won’t have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment or plain-old “human error” are much more likely to kill him first.

But Mark’s not ready to quit. Armed with nothing but his ingenuity and his engineering skills—and a gallows sense of humor that proves to be his greatest source of strength–he embarks on a dogged quest to stay alive, using his botany expertise to grow food and even hatching a mad plan to contact NASA back on Earth.

As he overcomes one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next, Mark begins to let himself believe he might make it off the planet alive.

But Mars has plenty of surprises in store for him yet.

I read this after I watched the movie and I really liked both the movie and book. I thought they cast Matt Damon perfectly as Mark Watney, when I was reading the book I pictured Matt Damon in my head as I was reading and that felt natural. Mark’s humour was right up my alley and I loved the story. I only gave it three stars on GoodReads though (I would’ve gone for 3.5 if that was an option) because there was SO MUCH “here is the scientific explanation of exactly how I did this.” Like, I’m impressed you know those things, author, but I don’t care to. I didn’t think that amount of detail was needed. Sometimes we are talking entire chapters of a very scientific explanation of how something was rigged. So, there was some skimming happening on my part. The other thing was I had already seen the movie so I pretty much knew what was going to happen and that took away from the suspense a bit. But overall I really enjoyed it and would recommend.

You’re Never Weird On The Internet by Felicia Day

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Synopsis:

The Internet isn’t all cat videos. There’s also Felicia Day—violinist, filmmaker, Internet entrepreneur, compulsive gamer, hoagie specialist, and former lonely homeschooled girl who overcame her isolated childhood to become the ruler of a new world… or at least semi-influential in the world of Internet Geeks and Goodreads book clubs.

After growing up in the south where she was “home-schooled for hippie reasons”, Felicia moved to Hollywood to pursue her dream of becoming an actress and was immediately typecast as a crazy cat-lady secretary. But Felicia’s misadventures in Hollywood led her to produce her own web series, own her own production company, and become an Internet star.

Felicia’s short-ish life and her rags-to-riches rise to Internet fame launched her career as one of the most influential creators in new media. Now, Felicia’s strange world is filled with thoughts on creativity, video games, and a dash of mild feminist activism—just like her memoir.

Loved! I listened to this as an audio book and I loved the way Felicia told her story. Audio books narrated by the author are my favourite! Felicia is super relatable and likable. She is the creator of The Guild (a web series on YouTube based on World of Warcraft), and she also played Violet on Buffy. Ugh, the hate Felicia received for simply being a female gamer ENRAGED me. I didn’t know the background there, so reading that part of the book about all the hate Felicia received (from men) was really surprising (except not).

I have been known to be a bit of an internet geek and I got super into WoW a few years ago before I met Evan (and I found out Evan also played, haha.) I played it pretty religiously for about six months and I had two level 80s and even did some raiding — and then I realized that I was actually devoting my life to this game and there was no way to be just a casual player. I had to quit cold turkey if I wanted to be a productive member of society. Actually, I quit and then started my blog! This is a much more productive way to spend my spare time. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t miss it though. I still think about it sometimes, but I know that if I play it I’ll be sucked into the void again. It was a dark time. Evan and I have already discussed that when we are in a nursing home one day and have nothing better to do we will basically live in the game. Something to look forward to!

Anyway I loved the book, and I think you’d like it even if you don’t know anything about online RPG. Actually it inspired me to just buck the F up and finish the book that I’ve been working on already (of my cartoon stories) and to make my own internet dreams a reality (start a web comic).

There’s a few more books, including Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, but I’ll save ’em for next time. Read anything good lately?! Tell me!

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Friday Wrap Up

A few weeks ago this arrived in the mail just in time for the Olympics!

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Uh, you know it’s going to be a good day when booze is delivered to your doorstep (well, to the post office because no one was home but close enough). Blogging has its perks, I tell you what. So that would be Pitu, a brand of cachaça, a distilled spirit made from sugarcane juice and the most popular boozy beverage in Brazil. You know what’s good to make with this? Caipirinhas! Brazil’s national cocktail, which I am no stranger to.

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From my HoH Eats The World: Brazil post, double-fisting my caipirinha with coxinha. Now I really want Brazilian food.

My boozy gift came with an official recipe for caipirinhas, so that was handy.

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I brought it to the cottage to make some for everyone when we were there, but then we didn’t have enough crushed ice to do it. Instead we brought the bottle back home and busted it out while we watched the Olympics with Eric, Kenya and Dixon.

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Caipirinhas are so good – tangy, sweet and delicious. Make sure you don’t skimp on that sugar and lime though, I didn’t put enough in at first and it was just way too boozy.

Speaking of the Olympics, I LOVE THEM! I’m so glad I live in Canada and can watch CBC coverage and not NBC. Although last night Elliotte Friedman confused Michael Phelps for Ryan Lochte the entire race in the men’s 200m individual medley, and then when Penny Oleksiak won gold he called her Emily Overholt. He is a hockey announcer usually so I can’t fault him too much, and his Twitter apology was great. He owned it.

And the comments are so supportive and nice! Oh Canadians. If that was an NBC commentator I think he would have been ripped to shreds.

Also, I completely forgot Ryan Lochte existed until I saw him strutting by the pool last night, and his grill came flooding back to me.

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My favourite commentator is totally Leslie Jones though. If you’re not keeping up with her commentary on Snapchat and Twitter (@Lesdogggg) you are missing out. She is killing it, and she is killing me.

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I have to admit that I usually enjoy the Winter Olympics more because Canada is actually a contender, but I do love watching the summer events, specifically swimming, rowing and gymnastics. And women’s rugby this year, those girls are badass. When I used to work for OFSAA going to our girls’ rugby championship (blogged about it back in the day) was my favourite. I just loved their enthusiasm. Watching the Olympics does make me miss working for a sports organization.

In addition to the Olympics, we marathoned the entire season of Stranger Things with Eric, Kenya and Dixon were here.

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I freaking loved it. Loved it all. Except Winona Ryder most of the time… but those kids were so great. The music was amazing, and the whole ambiance reminded me of my favourite old school movies like Stand By Me and the Goonies. It felt really nostalgic. I wish it was about four episodes longer. I want more!

And in other news, Tilly has started playing fetch! It is the cutest thing ever.

Who needs a dog when your cat plays fetch! #catsofinstagram #catvideo

A video posted by Lindsey Evanoff (@happyorhungry) on

She will ONLY play fetch with one toy, a little mouse-like thing, and Evan and I could not for the life of us figure out where it came from. It just appeared one day. Our catsitter Mary, a lady who lives in our building, has taken a shining to Tilly and when we come back from a weekend away Tilly will sometimes have new toys that Mary has brought for her. The last weekend we were at the cottage Tilly even stayed at Mary’s house and hung out with her cats. Makin’ friends. So we thought Tilly’s favourite toy came from Mary.

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And then last week Evan sent me a text with the photo below that said “I know where Tilly’s favourite toy came from…”

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It is totally the arm on our owl doorstopper. I guess she just decided it was going to be hers and ripped it off to play with. She has a ridiculous amount of toys and it’s so funny that she has taken such a liking to this one. It’s her only toy that she hasn’t lost under the couch (sometimes I’ll do an under the couch toy run and find about 30 under there). She stashes it sometimes but always brings it out later for fetch time. She’s so cute.

Alrighty, that is it! Three posts this week, that is a record lately. Have a great weekend!

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Toronto Times

One of the things I really wanted Eric and friends to experience while they were here was Choir! Choir! Choir! I know that going to choir on your vacation doesn’t exactly sound like the most fun time. Believe me, I wouldn’t have pegged myself as a “choir” joiner, even though I do love singing (by myself in my car)…but C!C!C! is different. I was pretty apprehensive my first time, but once you start singing you feel more comfortable and now I think I’d even go by myself if I couldn’t find someone to come with me. It’s also in a pub so, that definitely amps up the coolness. It is truly an amazing experience. Someone described going to C!C!C! as taking a soul bath and I think that is pretty accurate. It is uplifting and stress relieving and I always come out of there feeling so happy. I love it.

So last Tuesday after work I roped Eric, Kenya and Dixon into joining me at choir, and Emily and Dawn too as they have been wanting to come with me for a while. Party! C!C!C! happens at Clintons on Bloor West, so first we all went out for dinner at Ka Chi, a Korean restaurant just down the street (same restaurant I went to for HoH Eats The World – Korea). I LOVE the bibimbap there.

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So good.

After dinner we walked over to Clinton’s. It was a SUPER hot day so we were all sweaty and shiny-faced, but everyone was so at least we weren’t alone.

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I know that none of them have really done anything like this before so I was excited for them to experience it. We sang The Beatles – Tomorrow Never Knows in honour of the 50th anniversary of their album Revolver. Definitely an interesting (and psychedelic) song choice… I wasn’t sure how it was going to turn out, but I know that all of Daveed and Nobu’s arrangements are amazing so I was pretty confident that it would be awesome. It totally was. And we got in the video!!!

Prominently. Dawn and Emily are right up front, just in front of Kenya and I (I’m wearing glasses in the vid), so we’re pretty much in the entire thing – although I wish I hoisted Kenya on my shoulders! Eric and Dixon are singing mids behind us. Eric’s bright shining face is prominently featured at exactly 3 minutes in, and you can catch a good glimpse of Dixon’s luscious locks in the beginning. I love it. And I feel like it’s a good souvenir of their trip! Pretty groovy. You can watch the video here if it doesn’t load above. They all said they loved the experience and were glad I dragged them to choir (probably better than the time I dragged Eric, Kenya and Dixon up a mountain in the pouring rain). I’m still a cool sister!

I got off work early on Friday so I picked up the trio and we met my dad at Nana’s, who just turned 102! She was SO EXCITED to see Eric.

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Although at first she didn’t realize who he was. I introduced Kenya and Dixon as Eric’s girlfriend and best friend, respectively, and she said “And how is Eric?!” and we were all “he’s standing right there!” and she just about lost her mind. She just kept saying “What a surprise!!!!” and of course “Beautiful! Wonderful! … Fantastic!”

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She is nearly completely deaf now so we write her love notes to communicate.

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Sometimes she writes back instead of speaking. I’m amazed at how quick her mind is and how great her writing (and spelling and grammar) still is. I asked her how she was doing and she wrote back “Very bad. Pain everywhere, all over my body, all the time. But…” and then she made a what-can-you-do motion with her hands and said “It’s okay! I’ll just carry on.” Aw, Nanners. That was sad, but she is so funny and never feels sorry for herself, so we didn’t dwell on it. I can’t imagine how crappy that must be though, and I am not sure how she stays so positive. Anyway, it was a cute visit. She was not understanding that Dixon was in fact not a girl (the hair confused her) so that was pretty entertaining.

After Nana’s we ordered takeout Chinese and watched the Opening Ceremonies back at our place.

On Saturday we went to da island!

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I like to show it off to the tourists. It was again a super hot day and Eric and Kenya have seen the more touristy side of the island with the gardens and Centreville amusement park, so we went to Hanlan’s Point Beach!

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It is the most beautiful beach on the island, in my opinion. A bunch of us had a great day there last year, you may remember me posting about it. And yes it’s a clothing optional beach and no our clothes did not come off. I mentioned last year that we all stayed fully clothed also and someone recently commented on that post and said “What a sad bunch of prudes” which…is the opposite of how I would describe my friends – they are very happy and inappropriate. I am in favour of doing what you feel, and I personally do not feel comfortable leisuring around in the nuddy-pants in my own city where I might actually run into people I work with. Awkward. Also this time my brother was here, so, that would be weird…

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We spent most of the day lounging around on the sand and swimming. The water is gorgeous! So clear and blue.

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Speaking of gorgeous…

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That hair.

My friend Hannah and a friend of hers met up with us for a while in the later afternoon (Hannah knows Eric as she came to Taste of the Danforth with us last year)

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This photo unfortunately had to get cropped as there was quite the bare bum behind Evan. This is my life in PG, always remember.

After beaching it up we got changed out of our bathing suits and headed back to the docks. We had to wait a bit for the ferry so in the meantime SKYLINE PHOTO SHOOT. I love Toronto!

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After we got back to the mainland we wandered around the harbour to the Amsterdam Brewhouse on the lake. We needed to hydrate so BEER FLIGHTS!

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And lots of water. I got the smoked brisket sandwich and I have zero regrets about it. Delicious.

I’m really going to miss those three. Luckily not for too long ’cause I’m heading out west on Labour Day weekend to stay with them for a couple nights (with Lisa, Sherrie and Sherrie’s friend Yamina from Switzerland – we have quiiiite the road trip planned that includes some camping in the mountains and hopefully some white water rafting, so I am super excited for those adventures!

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Dock Days of Summer

AHOY! Sorry for the blog hiatus. Summer be BUSY. I mean, I cannae complain because I elect to be busy and it’s busy with fun things (I don’t even have kids so I’m sure many of you are side-eyeing my “busyness” because I’m basically just leisuring), but when I’m out in the evenings after work and doing stuff all weekend my blogging suffers. I miss it! There are so many things I’ve been wanting to talk about. Hopefully I can still catch up with everything.

The most exciting thing lately is my BFF Lisa was visiting from Calgary, which I already mentioned, and also my brother Eric from Kelowna was here for a week and a half. He came out with his girlfriend Kenya and their friend Dixon (I just consider Dixon my second brother now) and have been staying with Evan and I.

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They arrived on the Friday of the long weekend and they just left this past Sunday, so it was a whirlwind squeezing in all the fun times with them. Lest we be boring hosts. They sure showed Evan and I a good time a couple summers ago so we needed to repay the favour. Eric and Kenya visited me a few years ago but Dixon has never been to Ontario so we needed to show him that a time without mountains can still be a time!

They arrived at 11:30pm on the Friday so Lisa and I picked them up from the airport and headed straight to the cottage for the weekend. She had slept over Thursday night as I took her to the Lumineers for her birthday (AMAZING), and I took Friday off work so we could go shopping for my wedding dress. More on that later but things actually looked pretty good on the ol’ bod so that was a success! Evan went up to the cottage a bit earlier in the afternoon to prepare for our arrival. The rest of us didn’t get to the cottage until like 1:30 in the morning but it is tradition to grab a beer and walk down to the dock on arrival so that’s what we did. The stars up there are beautiful and we had a good time catching up. I’m so glad Lisa was here at the same time as them, last year she was leaving as Eric was arriving so they only saw each other for like 10 minutes at the airport.

Anyway, cottage.

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Making breakfast at the cottage and then doing all the dishes is not my favourite. Dinner is easier ’cause we do it on the barbecue and lunch is usually a random assortment of snacks, but for breakfast Evan and I find it’s usually better to just go out. So the six of us headed to Golden Beach Resort. Their Boathouse Cafe has delicious food so it’s a cottage staple for Evan and I.

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And another cottage tradition:

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After breakfast we went in the gift shop and could not resist buying these shirts…

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Usually when we match it is not on purpose, like this time was a total accident…

You know you're best friends when you meet up for the first time in 3 months and you happen to be wearing the same shirt.

But this time we couldn’t resist. We weren’t the only matching besties!

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Doesn’t Dixon have incredible hair? We all raved to him about it. I’m sad I never got to braid it.

We had some friends up on Saturday so they started arriving once we got back from b-fast. It was gorgeous outside so we spent nearly the entire day on the water. We busted out the inner tubes and the party raft and it was just a big floating fest.

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I love the cottage. Everyone took the SUP boards for a spin, even little Scarlett!

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I should note that she enjoys wearing bandaids, for fun not for her injuries.

For dinner we did pork and veggie skewers, chicken burgers, and corn on the barbecue. Well, the chefs did, I just watched.

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Evan also made a white bean dip from Eat, Shrink and Be Merry and he does this amazing potato salad with halved small potatoes, grainy mustard and a bunch of herbs (basil, etc.). It’s so good.

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Summer barbecues are the best. After dinner it was back to the lake.

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Mark and Dawn brought their boat (and made Evan super jealous, next year I think we are just going to have to suck it up and get a boat) so at dusk the boys went on a fishing trip.

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Apparently Eric and Dixon were the only ones who caught anything. Just sunfish though, nothing crazy.

 

Once the lads got back we had a bonfire and spent the rest of the evening killing ourselves laughing. It was so much fun and probably my favourite day of the entire summer so far.

Sunday was overcast for most of the day so we had a bit of a break from the sun. Everyone had left and it was just Evan, Eric, Kenya, Dixon and I, so my dad (aka Bobby) came over in the afternoon to spend time with us.

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Upon meeting Dixon he said “Are you a musician?” (the hair) except we thought he said “Are you a MAGICIAN?” which I wish actually happened because it would have been way more funny. Dixon, for the record, is neither a musician or a magician…as far as I know. My dad also wanted to show us his back stretches, so suddenly he was doing yoga on the floor. That was entertaining. He’s a good time that Bobby.

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Bobby stayed for dinner (burgers!) and once he left the rest of us had quiet reading time inside. We also watched Demolition Man with Sylvester Stallone, which was pretty hilarious, though I fell asleep so I can’t tell you if the ending was any good.

Monday was a holiday in Canada so we stayed at the cottage until the afternoon. It was another ridiculously beautiful day so a lot of lake time happened.

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It was the best weekend. When I asked Eric, Kenya and Dixon the highlight of their trip to Ontario they all said the cottage. I’m going to recap some of our other adventures but I guess it’s all downhill from here so don’t get too excited!

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