Delicious Things I’ve Eaten Lately

I have been very, very busy with work the past few weeks, and when this happens my blog tends to suffer. I am sorry about that. There are so many things I want to talk about but I am just not making the time to sit down and write, so I don’t know if it will happen. But rest assured I have still been eating delicious things. So, this is totally a filler post, but who doesn’t like to hear about food?

A couple of weeks ago Evan took me out to this Turkish restaurant in Vaughan called Sofra Istanbul. I got the Meat Saute with beef and I was super impressed.

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Beef cooked with onions, green pepper, mushrooms, tomato, herbs and spices with tomato sauce, and rice on the side. It was SO GOOD. I don’t know if I have ever had Turkish food before, but I will definitely be having it again. I loved that plate.

A couple of weeks ago I went for a catch-up lunch with my former coworker but forever friend Brian, aka Lord Byron (and he calls me the Princess).

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Lord Byron and I at a work event a few years ago

I miss seeing him all the time. Actually, I miss my whole office family very much. We went to a pub near my work called the Pump House Grille that I have been to several times with my current coworkers so I know it’s really good. Their salads in particular are amazing. Huge portions. When I was out with Brian I ordered the grilled chicken taco salad and it did not let me down.

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When I broke down the walls of that taco shell it nearly overflowed on my plate. So much salad and it was so good. My only complaint was the salsa. It wasn’t the best, but it got the job done.

My first event last Monday was at the Royal York Hotel downtown Toronto, and leading up to this I had nearly daily conversations with my contact at the hotel. During this time we decided we like each other quite a lot. She is close to my age and we have a lot in common, so whenever I talked to her about event related things we ended up having a grand old time on the phone. I don’t even usually like talking on the phone. Anyway, I was dropping by for a site visit prior to our event and she offered to take me out for lunch at the Royal York restaurant EPIC. I will never, ever say no to a free lunch. Ever. Especially not a fancy lunch.

Not only did she offer to take me out for lunch, but she insisted that we go all out, three course meal it up. If you insist. I started with the Ontario farm fresh salad with goat cheese. My new friend also insisted that I add scallops to the salad because they are very good. I am not one to argue the addition of scallops on anything ever, so I complied.

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And I agree, they were VERY good scallops. And that goat cheese was plentiful and delicious. Now that is how you do a goat cheese salad! Take note, Sandals.

For my main I ordered the lobster pasta, because lobster. And because pasta.

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Better than I was anticipating. Best pasta I’ve had in recent memory. The chefs there know what they are doing, I tell you what. I think I need to hit up EPIC more often, because it was EPIC. Dessert was epic too. Creme brulee!

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Three different kinds. I don’t remember what kinds they were but they were all delicious.

My old work building had a Druxy’s deli downstairs and I used to rave on and on about how much I love their salads. I have really missed not having them so conveniently close to me. Last week I Googled locations near my work and I saw there was one not far away inside a hospital. Not convenient at all, probably the furthest thing from convenient. But I love Druxy’s so damn much that yes I will visit a hospital so that I can go there.

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It’s been so long!!! Druxy’s, I love you!

The hospital parking wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be… It is pay parking, but apparently if you are under 10 minutes you can get back out with your ticket without having to pay. So I will be going back. But even though I didn’t have to pay, let it be known that I would pay an extra $3 in parking for a Druxy’s salad.

This Monday I had an event in Vancouver, so I was away Monday and Tuesday. I was in Vancouver for about 24 hours and it was raining so I didn’t even really go outside. But I ate! Ohh I ate. After the event on Monday I roped a few of my coworkers and also a fine young chap from Edmonton with a fantastic mustache who was attending our event, to come out for dinner. We went to the restaurant at the Four Seasons (where we were staying), Yew. I went there last year after an event too, and I can’t remember what I ate but I do remember liking it. This year my coworker Kelly and I split this amazing seafood platter.

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The seafood tower for two. Yumfest for days. In that pile of deliciousness is fresh local oysters, crab salad, shrimp, albacore tuna and scallops. Yes yes yes and yes.

The next morning I ordered room service before my flight back to the T dot.

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I love a good poached egg.

This has all been going out food, but I have been eating pretty great in as well. Evan has been just killing it in the kitchen lately. Turkey with roasted vegetables.

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We are both on a huge roasted vegetable kick right now. It is fall, so tis the season.

And curry.

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Evan’s curry is the best. That is lentils, beef curry, two different kinds of mixed pickle chutney, rice and a popadom (this little crusty tortilla thing made from lentil flour).

And pulled pork burritos.

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(put pork in crockpot with soup stock, garlic and onion – cook all day, pull the pork, add to burritos and top with rice, cilantro, cheese, squirt of lime juice, salsa. Toast burrito between two pans to make crispy. This seals the wrap so it stays together). I like.

Four Thing Friday

Just a few things I have been meaning to talk about but haven’t gotten a chance (meaning, haven’t sat down and actually made time to blog). So, numbered post.

1. Bolt has now been gone for two weeks and two days and we are all getting back to normal life before Bolt times. Everyone except for Winnie.

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Winnie still does not seem to realize that she is an only kitty, and she continues to slink around all low to the ground in her area of the condo as if something is going to attack her at any moment (even though Bolt never attacked her, she just really does not like dogs, despite their promising almost snuggle). When we brought her out to the living area in the days after Bolt was gone, she would immediately run off back to her “apartment” (what we call it, the spare bedroom = Winnie’s apartment) when we put her down. Despite us yelling “Winnie! It’s okay! You’re an only pet! The dog is gone!” She does not understand.

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Winnie does not want to be here.

Earlier this week she tentatively tiptoed into the hallway and got almost all the way to the dining area…but then turned around and slinked on back to her apartment.

Winnie lives for Fancy Feast, she will do absolutely anything for it, so the last couple of days I have been luring her into the kitchen with it and making her eat the Fancy Feast there. She still continuously looks around like something is going to pounce on her while she’s eating, but she’s eating and she’s staying in the kitchen for the duration of the eating, so I guess that’s progress. Baby steps. One day she will be back to leisuring around on the ottoman and having a meowfest at us to make us brush her when we get home from work.

2. I ran an event for my work on Monday, and at the end of the event when our cocktail networking reception was finishing up, everyone was all standing around and my Nana called. My Nana doesn’t call me very often anymore because she can’t really hear what I’m saying. If I don’t pick up and I call her back later, then she can’t hear me enough to know it’s me and she thinks I’m a stranger and hangs up on me.

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She might not know the difference

So if she calls me, I answer.

I excused myself and tried to hide in the corner while I talked to her so as to not disturb our attendees and coworkers while yelling into the phone, but when we were hanging up she said she loved me and I yelled back “I LOVE YOU TOO, NANA!” loudly, so she would know I said it. When I turned around I noticed my coworkers and the last of our event stragglers standing there staring at me. A collective “awwww” followed. So I went over to them and we had a little pow-wow of looking at pictures of my amazing Nana. I felt like a proud parent.

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It was a really long day, and pretty stressful at times, so that was a nice way to end it.

3. When we were in the Bahamas and Evan and I were on our way back from Atlantis in the taxi by ourselves, Evan and the taxi driver got into a serious discussion about cooking fish. Evan was asking about their local fish and how they cooked the fish, and the driver told him all about it and asked Evan how he cooked his fish and from my post in the backseat it was all very riveting. Then the conversation turned to cooking in general and Evan was going on about some island-type dishes that he makes and eventually the cab driver turned to me and asked if I cooked. And I said yes, sometimes, but Evan really enjoys it so he does most of the cooking.

So then he said, “Then…what do you do?” in an accusatory way, and in his tone I definitely heard a note of “you should be cooking for your man.”

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What.

Friend, I am good for many things other than cooking. So I said to him, in what I thought was a joking voice, “Well, we’re on this trip because of me,” (which is true, because my work paid for it). And the cab driver said “No no, I don’t like you throwing that in his face!” … well then buddy, don’t ask. If my man likes to cook for me, he will cook for me.

4. Also in the Bahamas, we were in another taxi on our way back from the restaurant on our last night. Evan and I somehow found ourselves in a very beat up van cab that sounded like it was going to fall apart at any second with two very important business executives and their wives. The rest of our group were in legit tour bus type vans that were air conditioned, so I am not sure why we all chose to get into this one.

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Somehow I ended up in the front. It was a bit awkward at first because the van literally did sound like it a wheel was going to fall off and we had to stop for gas at a super sketchy station and I could sense a bit of uncomfortableness from the ladies. As an ice breaker, I lured the cab driver into talking about the weather. Always a good topic. In the Bahamas, like I assume in most tropical places, it rains very heavily once a day for a short time. When we were there it only rained at night. So the cab driver was saying how he couldn’t understand why anyone would get anxious about the weather. Just relax and enjoy whatever Mother Nature is doing, basically. I will tell you what I told him.

Listen, it’s all fine and great if you are somewhere tropical. You can walk outside in your bathing suit and the worst thing that’s going to happen to you is you’re going to have a good time (okay, and you might get rained on). Try coming to Canada in the dead of winter and then say you don’t understand why people get worked up about the weather. It’s freezing. If you walk outside and you are not in the proper gear you could lose your appendages. You could literally freeze to death. You need to be layered and prepared for all weather at all times, from October to May.

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There is a freedom in tropical places that does not exist here. We can’t just run outside with minimal clothing and see where we end up. We need to plan our boots, hats, mitts, scarves, jackets, sweaters, longjohns, socks, etc. etc. etc.. That is a lot of things to think about!

Anyway, our whole cab agreed with me and it became quite a hilarious conversation with everyone chiming in with stories about how cold it can be in Canada. The sketchy cab ride flew by and I am pretty sure the driver felt sorry for us all.

And I think that’s it, The End. Have a great weekend!

Girls’ Nights and Bridal Showers

Hi! Sorry. I have been a bad blogger this week. Work things are quite busy, and then when I eventually get home I feel brain dead. But I’ll save you the OMG I’M BUSY! post, ’cause I know we’re all busy beavers and compared to many people I live a life of supreme leisure. No complaints.

I want to talk about the weekend! On Friday I met up with all the ladies at our friend Dawn’s for a girls’ night.

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And that is the only photo I took at Dawn’s house, the food spread. I hadn’t eaten dinner and had planned on getting pizza once we got to the bar, but that did the trick. Missing from this photo is this amazing warm cream cheese dip that Dawn makes. It was even better than usual and I could not stop eating it.

We eventually made our way over to ye old watering hole, the Tartan (you may remember from my birthday). That back room is still not quite as good as it was when we were in our 20s, but Friday was not a bad turn out at all. Most of our ladies were in attendance, as well as Dawn’s friends from work who I enjoy. And my friend Ashley who I haven’t seen in a VERY long time!

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I was so happy to see her. I think our last adventure together was our Float Your Fanny Down The Ganny night out. It has been far, far too long.

We tried to get someone to take a group shot of us, but unfortunately they did not know how to use an iPhone, so when I checked out the pictures afterwards I had a burst of 28 photos that looked like this:

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Helpful, thanks.

This was the best photo I got:

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I guess I will take it. Oh yeah, Dawn’s mom was in attendance. Parental supervision, you know.

Anyway, the usual shenanigans ensued (well not really, we didn’t have the monkey with us) and I think we all had a really great night.

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I have no idea who the man on the far right is, but that is a pretty terrific photobomb.

Afterwards, Ashley and I slept over at Dawn’s house and apparently we got back into the food upon our arrival. In the morning Dawn said it looked like an intense battle scene had gone down on her counter. Crumbs everywhere. She also said that a pumpkin tart had been left out with one bite taken out of it. I don’t remember doing that, but it’s possible it was me. That made me laugh pretty hard.

I woke up in the morning and forced a snuggle on little Miyou before heading home.

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Bolt’s former sister, you may remember… Such doge.

Saturday I hung out with Evan and we had quite the late night baking session…

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Apple cake! I needed a dessert that went well with tea for Sunday because all the ladies were gathering together once again to celebrate Emily’s bridal shower. It had a classy tea party theme.

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Oh Emilio, so pretty. I loved her dress. Such a beauty colour on her. And I have serious hair envy.

There was quite the tea setup…

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Very tea. Much fancy.

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The dessert table was a thing of beauty as well.

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Maybe not the best presentation of the apple cake… But it was still delicious!

The Emily shrine.

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Emily and I met when we were in Grade 2 so seeing those pictures of my little Emilio brought back many memories. And many memories of birthday parties past. This attractive picture of me was actually taken at one of Emily’s bowling birthdays…

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The shower was a good time. We played all the games, Emily opened all the presents, we ate all the food…

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Party food is probably my favourite food group. I love those little sandwiches. Also that cucumber on a slice of bread with herb cream cheese…I had no idea it was going to be so good. Such a nice surprise. I went back and stalked the food table after I realized and ate about another 6 of them.

I think that Emily had a really good time.

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Wait…

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That’s better.

Baby Scarlett was also in attendance, and I cannot get enough of that little peanut!

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She is so cute. She loves her auntie Jug-Jugs.

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And her mom. Actually, while I am on this subject, please vote for that little nugget in Gerber’s Lil’ Star Photo Contest! Scarlett can win money for an RESP, and we all know how important it is to get an edumacation (you do have to create an account but it only takes a second). Vote here!

It was a good time celebrating our Emilio. We love her.

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Don’t ask me what I am doing with the socks. We were supposed to hold a prop for the photo and the real baby and the creepy doll were taken so I somehow ended up with the authentic Icelandic wool socks.

While I was at the shower Evan texted me this pic:

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Amazingness, it’s what’s for dinner. I was having a good time, but I can’t lie, I was pretty excited to get home and eat that. Oh Evan knows the way to my heart, that sly minx.

Book Things

Book time! I have been reading a lot lately and I finished a lot of books over the last few months and I have been meaning to talk about them for ages. So this post will be book heavy, just a heads up. Another heads up, I kind of suck at book reviews.

Silver Star by Jeannette Walls <- Synopsis there

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I have to tell you that the Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls is one of my favourite books of all time. I think maybe I have already told you. I have read it several times, have recommended it to probably everyone I know, and I find myself thinking about it randomly from time to time. Something about that story really resonated with me. I think it will stay with me forever.

This book I read back in June and when I was originally finding photos of the covers of the books for this post I completely forgot that I had read this. So I don’t think it will stay with me forever, however I did enjoy it while I was reading it. I LOVED Bean, the main character. I just want to read about all the adventures of Bean. Such a bright young whipper-snapper she is. In all of her books I think Jeannette is really good at writing likeable and relatable characters. Anyway, I’d recommend it if you’re looking for a quick light read with a good story.

Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn <- Synopsis there

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Gillian Flynn’s first novel. Not exactly a light read but it is pretty quick. I got through it in a day or two. And the opposite of likeable, relatable characters happening in this book. Everyone is messed up. Like completely messed up. I didn’t dislike the main character, but I can’t say that I really liked her either. The entire book had a dark and dreary feel to it, when I was reading it in my head I pictured everything in gray. Most of it made me wonder WTF I was reading and also feel seriously thankful for the life that I have. I did also find it kind of predictable…

Dark Places by Gillian Flynn <- Synopsis there

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I guess I was on a Gillian Flynn kick. That lady sure knows how to write a crazy story. I borrowed this from my bestie Lisa when she was visiting and she warned me that it was disturbing, and I have to agree. It is a disturbing book. It is quite gory, and some parts were very hard for me to read. But I felt compelled to read it! Again, I’m not sure I really liked any of the characters, but overall I enjoyed this book. When I wasn’t reading it I kept thinking about it. I even had dreams about it. Lisa and I both agreed that we didn’t enjoy the ending as much. Well, I didn’t mind half of the ending, but without getting into spoiler detail, the other half I thought was a cheap way out. An easy fix. You’ll see if you read it.

I can see why Dark Places and Sharp Objects are not quite as “mainstream” as Gone Girl. They are both just darker.

Speaking of disturbing…

We Need To Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver 

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Synopsis (it’s a short one)

Eva never really wanted to be a mother – and certainly not the mother of the unlovable boy who murdered seven of his fellow high school students, a cafeteria worker, and a much-adored teacher who tried to befriend him, all two days before his sixteenth birthday. Now, two years later, it is time for her to come to terms with marriage, career, family, parenthood, and Kevin’s horrific rampage in a series of startlingly direct correspondences with her estranged husband, Franklin. Uneasy with the sacrifices and social demotion of motherhood from the start, Eva fears that her alarming dislike for her own son may be responsible for driving him so nihilistically off the rails.

I think we need to talk about how disturbing this book is. Fitting because I heard about this book in the GOMI book club forum about the most disturbing book you’ve ever read. Yep, this is up there for me. But it wasn’t hard to read in the same way that Dark Places was. I actually found this book fascinating. The book is in the form of letters Eva is writing to her estranged husband, but that honestly doesn’t take away from the story, and it reads like a novel. The writing in the book is kind of over the top descriptive, and in the beginning I found it annoying and I wondered if I would be able to finish it. But once the story got started I got really into it, and then I had trouble putting it down. I found it so interesting to read about someone who was so deeply disturbed, clearly from birth. Even if it is fiction, it got me. I don’t know why it is so fascinating to read about troubled people, but it is!

Looking For Alaska by John Green

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Synopsis:

Before. Miles “Pudge” Halter’s whole existence has been one big nonevent, and his obsession with famous last words has only made him crave the “Great Perhaps” (François Rabelais, poet) even more. He heads off to the sometimes crazy, possibly unstable, and anything-but-boring world of Culver Creek Boarding School, and his life becomes the opposite of safe. Because down the hall is Alaska Young. The gorgeous, clever, funny, sexy, self-destructive, screwed-up, and utterly fascinating Alaska Young, who is an event unto herself. She pulls Pudge into her world, launches him into the Great Perhaps, and steals his heart.

After. Nothing is ever the same.

I loved this book. I adored the main character, Miles (Pudge). He reminded me of my brother and his best friend. I loved the idea of the Great Perhaps. It’s young adult and a pretty quick and easy read, but it was well-written and I enjoyed the story quite a lot. It has a similar feel to his other book The Fault In Our Stars, and this book also got me in the feels… You’ll see. I think it is going to be a book that stays with me for a while. Now I am anxious to read John Green’s other books.

The Silent Wife by ASA Harrison

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Synopsis:

Jodi and Todd are at a bad place in their marriage. Much is at stake, including the affluent life they lead in their beautiful waterfront condo in Chicago, as she, the killer, and he, the victim, rush haplessly toward the main event. He is a committed cheater. She lives and breathes denial. He exists in dual worlds. She likes to settle scores. He decides to play for keeps. She has nothing left to lose. Told in alternating voices, The Silent Wife is about a marriage in the throes of dissolution, a couple headed for catastrophe, concessions that can’t be made, and promises that won’t be kept. Expertly plotted and reminiscent of Gone Girl and These Things Hidden, The Silent Wife ensnares the reader from page one and does not let go.

I bought this book because it was on sale at Walmart and I wasn’t crazy about the rest of their book selection. And it’s a Canadian author! The super sad thing is that the author of this book died of cancer before it was actually published. I found that out after I finished and it made me sad. It is a mystery/suspense type of book, and it wasn’t anything completely memorable, but I did enjoy the story and it had a few good twists. The twists can’t quite compare to Gone Girl though. It was just not on that level (it’s been compared to Gone Girl, which is why I bring that up). I absolutely hated the silent wife’s husband. I spent a lot of time wanting to punch him while I was reading. I thought their whole relationship dynamic was very weird and difficult for me to relate to. Another book that makes me thankful that I have the life and relationships I do.

I think that’s it! Have you read any good books lately? I am always adding to my to-read list. I am currently reading City of Thieves and loving every minute of it.

Mr. Bolter found his Forever Home

But sadly it is not with us… Spoiler though, this story has a very happy ending.

So here is the thing. We love Bolt.

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He is the perfect dog 99% of the time, but we knew going into taking him that he had behavioural problems. He is on prozac (well, fluoxetine, which is prozac), that his vet recommended and prescribed.

I always thought that his first owners ruined him because they didn’t train him, and did who knows what else to him (before he went to the rescue and Dawn and Mark got him and fixed him as much as they could), but now I wonder if there is something in his brain…a mental illness or a chemical imbalance. Like he’s not quite wired correctly. The bottom line is, he has anxiety and some fear aggression issues and living in a condo is not the best place for him.

I mentioned this before. He has a problem sometimes with other dogs (mainly dogs that are bigger than him) and some strangers (mainly loud men). But the bigger problem is that his triggers are unpredictable. Some you get to know, but some are a surprise, so every situation he is in you wonder how he’s going to react. Is he going to perceive that situation as a threat and lash out at someone? Or will he be calm? Because he usually is calm, but sometimes he’s not, and you just don’t know which it will be. At my Bestie Lisa’s parents for the weekend, for example, he was fine. Camping with Ian and Dorothy, he was fine.

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In an elevator with a screaming little girl who is very clearly afraid of him? Not fine.

Living in a condo with a dog with anxiety is an issue because of the strange people and the other dogs that you inevitably run into. Bolt will have certain days where he is more anxious than usual, and when he’s with us and other people he is used to, he’s totally fine. We could do anything to him and he would like it.

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(unless you wake him up when he’s sleeping and try to get him to move, he does not like that)

But with strangers…he can react without thinking. It is best to avoid strangers on those days, when he is more anxious. But living in a condo and avoiding strangers is impossible. Every time we took him outside for a walk we would run into someone or something that could potentially make him anxious (again, unpredictable, you don’t know what sort of situation he will react to). Evan brought Bolt back in from a particularly eventful walk once and was all “Can this building throw ANY MORE weird situations at Bolt?!”

For us we felt like we were walking on egg shells every time we got into a crowded elevator with him, or walked into the enclosed lobby with other dogs. And for Bolt, it was not the best environment for him because again, it increases his anxiety and makes him uncomfortable.

We felt a little uncomfortable leaving him with people also, which is unavoidable for us. When we went to the Bahamas my friend Hannah stayed here and watched him, but we worried. He was fine, but we don’t 100% trust him with strangers (not Hannah, he liked her, but when she took him outside).

If we were planning on moving in a year we would just get through it until we moved somewhere with a yard, because I tell you we truly, genuinely love him. He isn’t a bad dog! But I don’t know when we will be moving, and now doesn’t feel like the right time. It could be a few years from now. For Bolt to stay here, where every day was unpredictable for him, it was mostly unfair to him. He needs to live somewhere with a yard, where he feels safe and secure, with an owner who loves him, and where he is not running into all the strangers strangers and their dogs LITERALLY every time he goes anywhere.

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Evan and I made the final decision on this in mid-August, so we started contacting rescues to see if we could find him a home. None of the rescues were overly helpful, but their mandate is to save dogs that are in immediate trouble/danger and Bolt wasn’t. We said we would keep Bolt until we found a good home for him, however long that took. So I understand where they were coming from.

We heard nothing back, and when we got back from the Bahamas we wavered on our decision and thought maybe we would keep him because we couldn’t let him go to just anyone… And also that little coconut has weaselled his way into our hearts.

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But then last week happened. One of the rescues added Bolt to Petfinder as a courtesy post and they included my phone number in his description. Early last week a man named Tony contacted me asking about him and he was very, very interested. He said he had the same breed of dog, an American Eskimo, for 17 years and she had just passed away a few months ago. So he knows about all the quirks with that breed. He was thinking about getting another dog but he said he wasn’t sure it was the right time…until he saw Bolt’s little face on that website. He said when he saw Bolt it felt like fate.

So he came over that evening and spent about an hour and a half with us, getting to know us and Bolt. It seemed too good to be true. Tony is in his early 40s, has a house with a big yard, and he and Bolt just seemed like a match made in heaven. I could tell by the way he talked about his other dog that he genuinely really loved her and that Bolt would be spoiled. He showed us pictures of her and had tears in his eyes. He works from home and is going to dote on Bolt, I can just tell. Bolt will be his world. That is another thing, Evan and I both work 9-5 and I know Bolt was okay with this but it wasn’t ideal.

We were very upfront with Tony about Bolt’s anxiety and issues, and he said he could deal and that he thought it would be better if Bolt was with him than someone else.

So Tony took Bolt home with him that night. Evan and I weren’t quite ready, it was so fast! But he drove an hour and a half to see Bolt so it would have been silly to make him come back. Letting Bolt go with him was probably the hardest thing I’ve ever done. Evan and I walked them downstairs to say goodbye and when they drove away we could see Bolt’s little face peeking back at us through the car window… and we both lost it, we just hugged each other and cried in the parking lot. In the rain.

But it is for the best. For everyone. Tony has been sending us nearly daily photos and videos, starting the night he got Bolt.

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All Bolt wants is an owner that loves him, to chase squirrels in a back yard, and to be snuggled! That’s all he wants! It would appear he is getting it.

Tony said we can FaceTime with Bolt any time we want and can even come and visit him (which we are planning to do on an upcoming weekend).

I feel bad, guilty almost, that we couldn’t make it work out, and it is sad and we will miss him… But I know that this is best. For us, for Tony, but especially best for Bolt, and I think that is what makes the decision just a bit more bearable.

I will leave you with some more of my favourite pictures of Bolt from when we had him…

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Fingers (and paws) crossed that it continues to work out with Tony! But he said he is prepared to deal with anything so it’s looking pretty good.

Thanksgiving Weekend

This weekend was Canadian Thanksgiving! I have said it before, but I like when our Thanksgiving falls. There is ample time to recover from all the eating before we do it all over again at Christmas.

Evan and I picked up Brotherman and Kelly on Saturday morning and headed to Belleville to celebrate turkey day with their mom and nana. On the way we passed the Big Apple, which I now know is awesome since our stop there on the way to Emily’s bachelorette party in Montreal, so we decided to make a quick detour for pies. You cannot have Thanksgiving without pies. The Big Apple has quite the pie operation going on…

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Where the magic happens

So many pies!

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I wanted to get them all, but we just went with the traditional pumpkin and apple. And also a few apple fritters that we could eat immediately, which actually may have been the best apple fritter I have ever had.

No visit to the Big Apple is complete without a photo in front of said Big Apple. Brotherman and Kelly first…

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And then Evan and I. We had to take a couple before we got a nice one because Evan found a bulrush.

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And he proceeded to harass me with it.

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Until I snapped the end off.

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We also went over to the petting zoo area to see the animals, and this beautiful lama caught our eye.

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Those are quite the teeth. I thought she was cute though, in her own way.

Eventually we arrived at the Nana’s and had a happy reunion with the family. Evan’s mom’s friend brought a few witch hats for us to wear.

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I wonder if she is trying to tell us something…

Don’t worry, the guys weren’t left out of the Halloween hat party.

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We hung out for a few hours, chatting and watching the House Hunters International marathon (which makes me feel like I’m doing life wrong), and then it was time for Thanksgiving dinner. Which was amazing. Curry is the tradition at the Nana’s house (you may remember from last year), so she made us all lentils (which Evan also makes pretty often), meatball curry, yellow rice, curried potatoes, greens, ham, and cachumba (tomatoes and onions in vinegar, I think it is an Indian salad and it is very nice when accompanying curry).

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I was insanely full after that but I went back for seconds of just the meatball curry because I couldn’t get enough of it.  I like this curry tradition.

The Nana made apple crisp for dessert, so no need to break out our pie. It was REALLY good and I was just dying of fullness afterwards. We all just lazed around and were in bed by 9pm. But it was a very fun evening with Evan’s family.

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I am sad his mom and nana are a two hour drive from us, because I would like to see them more often. They make me laugh.

On Sunday we all had breakfast together before heading to Evan’s dad’s place to celebrate with that side of their family. That is where the animals are, you may remember. So we spent the afternoon doing the animal visitation rounds.

Remember Peanut, the little piglet?

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Well, she has grown.

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I got her from all sides so you can fully appreciate her beauty.

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She is large and in charge. And she enjoys oinking constantly.

This is Phil.

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Phil is a turkey, but Phil is not for eating! He is a pet turkey. I don’t think I have ever taken a moment before to truly appreciate how interesting-looking turkeys are…

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So knobby and bumpy and weird looking. His brain looks like it is on the outside of his head.

Phil spends his time stalking the guineafowl. Or maybe it is the gang of guineas who stalk him…

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You will occasionally see the guineas running by if you are inside and happen to glance out the window, and then Phil will be lumbering after them like a big T Rex.

This is Raisin.

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She looks kind of grumpy (and like a muppet) but I think she just suffers from resting bitchface because she is actually a very cuddly chicken.

And then there is this chicken…

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Apparently. That’s what I was told it was.

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They also look angry but are quite nice. Those poor guys had their beaks clipped before they arrived at Evan’s dad and Loulou’s, to deter them from pecking other animals.

This is my favourite donkey Zeke!

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I just love him. He is so nice. We like to tell each other secrets.

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There are also two horses.

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She really wanted in a picture with us.

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After the animal fest it was dinner time. Another great Thanksgiving meal happening over here… All the turkey things!

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I always forget how much I love stuffing. It’s probably good I only eat it a few times a year though, because when it happens I really appreciate it.

I was again full to the point of bursting, so we went back outside for a while before dessert, which was homemade pumpkin pie.

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This was very good pumpkin pie. I don’t even usually like pumpkin pie. Well that’s not true, I like all pie but my order of pie preference is lemon merengue – banana cream – pecan – any kind of fruit – pumpkin. But that pie may have bumped pumpkin up to number two (nothing will ever, ever beat my mom’s lemon merengue pie).

We headed back Sunday night and were home just in time for the Walking Dead, which I was on the edge of my seat for the entire time. Perched on the back of my seat may be more accurate. It was awesome and I was happy with how everything turned out. Yesterday we did a bunch of cleaning and stuff around the house, Evan made ham and split pea soup from leftover ham (OMG so good!), and we actually went to the movies for the first time in about a year to see Gone Girl. I loved it. I thought they did such a good job keeping it close to the book, and the casting was even better than I imagined. Evan really liked it also.

So a very good long weekend. I feel very thankful for this guy:

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And these two:

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And their families for letting me crash their dinners. And all the animals (which I do enjoy visiting, but I have to admit I’m glad they’re not actually mine).

I hope you Canadians had a great weekend filled with all the family and all the food and all the friends! I hope you had that even if you are not Canadian.

I love eating holidays!