Friday, June 29, 2012

Happy Canada Day!

This Sunday, July 1st we Canadians (eh!) will celebrate our country's birthday.  I don't go all out on celebrations but this year we are likely going to have a big BBQ and then find somewhere nearby to watch the fireworks at night.  I'm proud to be a Portuguese-Canadian and wanted to share some interesting facts with you today.

Here are some inventions that were created by us Canadians:

  • Baseball glove, 1883
  • Basketball - James Naismith (1892)
  • Dental mirror
  • Ear piercer
  • Electrical car (North America's first)
  • Electric wheelchair - George J. Klein
  • Heart valve operation (first)
  • IMAX - Grahame Ferguson, Roman Kroitor, Robert Kerr (1968)
  • Lightbulb (first patented) - Henry Woodward (1874)
  • Nursing Mother Breast Pads - Marsha Skrypuch (1986)
  • Pacemaker - Wilfred Bigelow
  • Paint roller - Norman Breakey (1940)
  • Panoramic camera - John Connon (1887)
  • Portable high chair
  • Radio compass
  • Rollerskate
  • Snowblower - Arthur Sicard (1927)
  • Superman - Joe Shuster and Jerome Siegel (1938)
  • Telephone - Alexander Graham Bell (1874)
  • Walkie-Talkie - Donald L. Hings (1942)
  • Zipper - Gideon Sundback (1913)
  • Music Synthesizer - Hugh LeCaine
  • AM radio - Guglielmo Marconi
  • Telephone - Alexander Graham Bell
  • Television - Reginald A. Fessenden 
Famous Canadians:

  • Celine Dion - singer
  • Alanis Morissette - singer
  • Nelly Furtado - singer
  • Bryan Adams - singer
  • Neil Young - singer
  • Jim Carrey - actor
  • Leonard Cohen - singer
  • Pamela Anderson - actor
  • Avril Lavigne - singer
  • Keanu Reeves - actor
  • Estella Warren - actress
  • Shania Twain - singer and songwriter
  • Shannon Tweed - actress 
  • Sarah McLachlan - singer
  • Mike Myers - actor
  • Michael J. Fox - actor
  • William Shatner - actor
  • Dan Aykroyd - actor
  • Donovan Bailey - sprinter
Facts courtesy of

Monday, June 25, 2012

Recipe: Suzana's Rum Cake

I invited my parents to stop by for coffee on the weekend and decided to make a cake in my new bundt pan from Lina's Italian Supermarket.  I had an angry fight with my silicone cake pan a few weeks back which landed it in the garbage.  At first I was going to make a wine cake from Tori Spelling's "Celebratori" book (which I love) but then discovered I didn't have all the ingredients so decided to just make something up.  Turned out great!

Suzana's Rum Cake

  • 1 box yellow cake mix
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup rum (i used Appletons 12 year)
  1. Mix all ingredients together.  If you don't want to use as much rum, hen add more milk in place.  I would recommend at least 3/4 cup to get the great taste. 
  2. Bake at 350F for 1 hour.
The cake isn't super sweet and is great with coffee.  P.S......I LOVE my new cake pan.  The cake popped right out and looked so pretty.

Steve whipped up some awesome cappuccinos this weekend too mmmm :)

Friday, June 22, 2012

Repurposed Painted Vases

It's been one crazy heck of a week so I apologize for the lack of posts but bear with me!  I wanted to quickly share with you some vases I transformed for a friend who was throwing a luncheon in honor of her sons' first communion.  We had a small budget to work with for decor so we made tissue paper pom poms in blue, green, and white.  And then for the tables we wanted to do some small floral arrangements for the garden luncheon.  Luckily my friend had some vases lying around from Valentine's Day that we were able to repurpose!

I cleaned the vases free from dust first.

With a hot glue gun, I wrote different words on the fronts of the vases and crosses on the back.  I used words such as love, joy, famiy, friends, believe, first, communion, etc.

With semi-gloss spray paint, I painted the sides tops and bottom.

These were super easy to do and effective.  For about $10 I was able to give her a dozen or so painted vases and tissue paper pom poms :)  Just enough decor for a beautiful outdoor garden luncheon.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Hallway Makeover

When I moved into my new house, I wanted any pictures that hung on the wall to be either taken by me personally or have some sort of meaning.  I'm not one for pictures of landscape just because it's pretty.  For some reason, the pictures in our hallway though got overlooked.  In my condo (my first home as a single lady), I had hung 3 Ikea "Ribba" picture frames with Ikea flower art over my bed.  On top of each was a decal as you see in the pictures below.  When I moved into my new house, the decals got ruined and I decided to put a picture of Paris (which I took myself when I was there) over my bed and the other frames went up in our hallway at the top of the stairs.  Then the other day we decided time for change and we went through our recent trip to Vegas and found some nice pictures.  I sent them online to Staples and two hours later we had new wall art!

My old condo bedroom

3 Ikea Ribba frames in a row with decals on top

My new hallway pictures! The top one is of the Paris and Bally' hotels taken from the Bellagio in Vegas.  The centre picture is of a casino on Fremont Street in Vegas.  The bottom picture is of the strip looking south from on top the eiffel tower.

What do you think??

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Summer is Just Around The Corner

I heart summer :) I cannot wait for warmer weather (if we get any this year sheesh), long summer nights, walking in the dark, ahhhh.  But what is summer without some breezy, cool clothes?  Here are my favorites for the upcoming season from Pinterest.

Monday, June 11, 2012

I Heart Stationery!

I loooooove, letterhead, wrapping paper, journals, oh my!  The first step is admitting you hav a problem right?!  Unfortunately I was not able to attend the Nationa Stationery Show (boo!) but I am excited for this contest from Wedding Lovely!

Wouldn't be LOVELY to win??!!  Just look at these beauties :)

Source: Wedding Lovely

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Restaurant Review: Famoso Pizzeria

Steve and I have been eager to try this new restaurant in our neighborhood since we saw the sign on the door of what was to come.  For the last little while we have been watching them under construction turning what was once a spa & tanning salon (closed due to fire) into a glorious restaurant.  So hello date night...hello Famoso Pizzeria, located on High Street in Mckenzie Towne.

I love the high ceilings and decor of the place, adds to the great atmosphere that the friendly staff provide.  It's a combination of rustic, industrial with brick and wood accents to modern decor with shiny chandeliers.  Glad to see that there was only one flat screen tv in the place as I hate when there are too many.  You should be able to carry a conversation with your date!  Upon entering the hostess let us know how things work: You sit yourself down at a table, there is a menu and a notepad to write down what you want then you go up yourself to the counter to order.  Then they bring your order to your table.  It's unique and worked well.  The manager also brought around wine sampes as it was Wine Wednesday....definitely coming back on a Wednesday for more of that!  He made the experience personal with chit chat.

View from our table of the order counter.

View from our table of the front entrance.

Raspberry Italian Soda....yum!

The menu and order pad stand compelte with pencils & your table number.

Margherita pizza

Siciliana pizza

The ingredients were definitely very fresh but overall I was a bit disappointed.  While the flavors were good, the pizza crust in hte middle was super soggy, like eating soup.  The outside crust was amazing and we only wish it had been all the way through :(  Not sure how likely we are to crave this again but the experience was worth it and it was not expensive.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Hiking in Bankhead

On a recent trip to Banff and Canmore, we headed over to check out Bankhead which is minutes away from Banff. Bankhead is considered a ghost town.  The town only existed from 1904 to 1922.  It was mainly a coal mining town which provided coal to the Canadian Pacific Railway until it was eventually shut down.  You can find some really interesting information on the town here.  If you go there now you will only find reminants of what was once there.  One house was left there and preserved as a interpretive centre.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Recipe: Grilled Asparagus Paninis

Yum!  These sandwiches are sooo good, my mouth is watering for one right now!  They are a great way to use asparagus and I love me a good panini.  And yes...that's a mojito beside my plate :)

  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • few tablespoons light mayonnaise
  • ciabatta bread (grocery store didn't have any so I just used sub bread)
  • swiss cheese
  • shaved proscuitto ham (also good with honey ham)
  • asparagus spears
  • olive oil
  1. Lightly brush asparagus with olive oil and grill on panini grill (I use a regular indoor grill).
  2. Meanwhile, mix the minced garlic with the mayo.  Spread on each side of bun. 
  3. Layer on the ham next to bottom side of bread.
  4. Next layer on the cheese.
  5. Top wih asparagus.
  6. Close the sandwich and throw on panini grill.  Press down until bread starts to toast and cheese has melted.