All posts by cassandra

Wedding Prep – 1 Week Countown

Wedding Planning Just Got Real – The Imperfect Bride’s Guide to A Near Perfect Wedding –  Part 2

The last wedding check in was at eight weeks to go, and I really did mean to update this at least a few times, but, as mentioned I am far from perfect, and suddenly we are just one week away! But we are actually feeling pretty organized right now, just moments ago I just finalized the cake flavours and we are currently chill-laxing in our hotel room at Walnut Beach Resort before heading out to another event as part of the Osoyoos Oyster Festival. We are on our pre-wedding honeymoon of sorts and couldn’t be happier! Pictured above we are at Watermark Resort for their BBQ party…..and now you know why I get my hair done professionally so often #frizz!

elsa

Last we reported in at the 8-9 month check list stage and had the following to do’s:

Wedding license (now done), Michael’s wedding band (check), then shoes (Fluevog), music (playlist in progress), welcome baskets (have all ingredients) , plan rehearsal dinner (a few details left here), and next day brunch (must still book a table), welcome gifts and wedding favours (must be really important to me as I listed twice!) , jewelry (THANKS Elsa Corsi Designs), underwear (Diane’s Lingerie of course), keep the fitness and diet routine going (nailed it and won the weight loss competition with the help of I-remove, trainer Kate McNulty, nutritionist Ashley Freeman and my Dailey Method Classes, have to keep it up this week of course, so ran yesterday, did yoga today and have a cycle class for tomorrow), and maintain skincare and general self-care (been working with Alfa Renaissance and using Apothekari skin care).

I also celebrated my Bachelorette in style at the Pan Pacific Hotel on the club floor, went to Spa Utopia and Hy’s Encore for dinner and Michael took a less formal approach and did the Regal Beagle. We do have slightly different tastes.

We’ll now pick up at the 6-7 months task list!

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Explore wedding day hair and makeup styles – Meeting with Mary-Ann Morley this Thursday for a hair trial. Had some fun with make up at Spa Utopia this past weekend, so will stick with that look-ish.

Meet with officiant to discuss plans for ceremony – Thursday too….busy day!

Reserve rentals: chairs, linens, lighting, décor, etc. – Using Avalon Rentals and confirmed numbers on Friday and just need to add a few more to that. Also borrowed some antique tea cups and saucers and using my mothers china for the dessert table.

Whisk Cake

Choose cake style and schedule tastings – Using Whisk Cakes

Decide on groomsmen attire – No official groomsmen but my Dad is walking me down the aisle and I’m confident he’ll be stylish. Bow tie in check.

jbl

Hire ceremony musicians – Michael is creating a play list and we’ve bought a JBL Extreme speaker from Best Buy.

Book transportation to and from venues – Very close by so people can drive.

Purchase wedding bands – Mine purchased a while ago and we got Michael’s a couple weeks ago.

Order Thank You Cards – Have a nice selection of these!

4-5 months The finishing touches…

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Choose flowers for: wedding party, attendants, venues, cake, etc. Mom has this organized. We have picked and dried hydrangeas an baby’s breath and ordered white roses and greenery as well.

Schedule dress fittings – Just did one fitting on Wednesday and lace just needs a bit of cinching in. Please let it zip up and allow me to breath. Gotta sweat it out on Friday a.m. for sure!

manteo resort from docks

Book honeymoon flights and hotels – We are at the Manteo for a week after for our official honeymoon, thanks to my sister and bro-in-law who have a place there.

Book room for wedding night – Manteo is booked. Michael checking in the night before.

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Order wedding cake – Whisk Cakes Kelowna!

Plan welcome baskets for out-of-town guests – They’ll be wine, jam, chocolate and olive oil.

Finalize wedding guest list – Just did today!

Assemble rehearsal dinner guest list – Done, mainly family.

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Book rehearsal dinner venue – My parents house for a BBQ. It’s gorgeous there, and we are amazing cooks, right? So why wouldn’t we?

Order Rehearsal Dinner Invitations – Who does this? REALLY??

3 months You’re getting close!

Finalize honeymoon plans and ensure all documents are in order – Double checked on hotel reservation.

Plan ceremony and reception seating – It’s a stand up reception and will be quick and easy. Please no RAIN!!!

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Experiment with hair and veil with stylist – Thursday!

Finalize readers and readings – Who, what? Please nothing too formal for us, this will be a very casual affair.

Purchase: toasting flutes, serving pieces, guestbook, flower basket and ring bearer pillow – Flutes that we are using for bubble are ordered, we own serving pieces, no thanks on the guest book, we have flower arrangements ordered and rings don’t belong on pillows we have boxes.

Finalize reception menu – We will BBQ some great locally raised meat and make some great salads and dessert. Figuring out this week.

Order Menu Cards – It will be obvious what you are eating. If you don’t know what pork, couscous, salad and flatbread is, you’re likely not our friends or family.

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Order Wedding Favors – We are delivering the favours in the welcome baskets and have sourced only the best of olive oil for this (of course).

2 months Crunch Time

Mail Wedding Invitations – That was called an email and it was done a while ago. Digital is where it’s at kids.

Develop system for organizing RSVPs – Thank you Microsoft Excel.

Begin writing vows – We have to say something, of course, I know, and it’s in my head percolating right now.

Review ceremony details with officiant – Thursday.

Lay out the content for Wedding Programs – There are no programs, it’s not that tricky of a day, but we have the schedule.

Apply for marriage license: order 2-3 extra – Done at London Drugs and it took all of 2 minutes. We don’t need extra paper though.

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Finalize seating arrangements – It’s fluid seating. We are not telling people where to sit as they are adults (mostly) and can figure that out.

Write out honeymoon itinerary for family at home – They know where we are.

Decide “Something Old, New, Borrowed, Blue.” – We’re both old and we have the lovely Honda Accord Hybrid for 3 weeks, so it’s borrowed and blue. THANKS HONDA CANADA!

Book spa and beauty treatments for you and your bridal party – YUP Excel Salon for lashes and waxing and ??? for nails and ??? for colouring.

Purchase gifts for attendants – I will have something for my maid of honour and flower girl and boy. Not telling or I don’t know yet, not telling which either.

1 month Don’t Forget …

Call vendors to confirm date, times and location – Done

Confirm honeymoon reservations – Done

Pack for honeymoon – We’re packed for the whole 3 weeks we are up here.

Pick up wedding rings  – Long time ago

Pick up marriage license – Done

Final dress fitting (with shoes & undergarments) – Done

Write Thank You notes as gifts are received – No gifts yet, we’re not that popular.

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2 weeks Down to the wire.

Follow up with guests who have not RSVP’d – For those who haven’t by now, their loss.

Give final count to caterer – Just did today.

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Update registries – We have asked for Best Buy Gift Cards so we can purchase some kitchen appliances.

fluevog

Begin breaking in wedding shoes – Runs to bedroom, puts on shoes.

Make arrangements for the caring of pets and plants while on honeymoon – We have outdoor plants and are in Vancouver. The rain will take care of.

Send playlists to DJ/band/ceremony musicians – Michael and his playlist strikes again.

Get final haircut and color – Monday.

Delegate wedding day duties: gift table, guestbook, etc. – We do need something for cards me thinks. No thanks on the guest book…..more paper.

Delegate someone to return tuxes, rentals and tend to wedding dress – People rent things? Actually we bought Michael’s suit and Avalon picks up their rentals.

Send directions to wedding day limo/transportation driver – Everyone has directions, but I will send an email Monday to confirm all on Monday.

wedding suppliers

1 week Relax, almost there!

Prepare final payments to vendors + cash tips for service personnel – Done

Give readers their scripts – Not doing scripts.

Give photographer and videographer your image and video requests – Need to come up with something-ish.

Lay out wedding clothes – I can’t do this yet, he’ll see the dress. Besides, it’s still at the dressmaker.

Prepare wedding day emergency kit – My purse always has an emergency kit and my Dad is a Doctor so our house is well stocked.

Get spa treatments for you and the bridal party – Thursday/Friday!

Day Before Can you believe it?

Deliver welcome baskets – Will do!

Get mani/pedi/massage – Booked

Attend wedding rehearsal – Of course!

Get to bed at a decent hour – We’ll try. Michael is at the hotel with and I am staying at my parents.

Wedding Day Enjoy your day!

Eat a good breakfast! Allow yourself plenty of time to get ready – On it! I’m also going for a run to relax.

wedding rings on hands women wedding and engagement ring on handmen women fancy engagement rings hand to hand wedding pictures ehtggaid 1

Give wedding rings and officiant fee to best man – We are paying ahead and recommend the same for sure and carrying our own rings.

Relax, smile, and soak in every incredible moment – Smile, laugh and celebrate we will!

We’ve got a few things to do, such as pick up a couple gifts, deliver baskets, wear in shoes and book the brunch, bu we’re on it and so far I’ve still got a groom! Now to get off to that cycle class to help ensure I can still get into that dress! See you at the altar.

What’s Good This Week in Vancouver April 21 Edition

Vancouver Events This Weekend

We’re off on our pre-wedding honeymoon (which totally is a thing by the way) and are currently hanging our hat at Walnut Beach Resort in the very sunny Osoyoos for their Oyster Festival!  While we don’t regret being here AT ALL, there are a couple things we’re sad to miss in Vancouver.

Juno Kim Pop-Up 6-Course Brunch at Field & Social v2.0

Join Juno Kim on Saturday, April 22nd for a special two-seating brunch at Field & Social. Inspired by staff meal and dim-sum style feasts, Chef Juno Kim will be creating a tasty 6-course menu meant to be shared and served as the dishes are ready. His cuisine focuses on using high-quality, ethical ingredients with bold flavours and balance in mind. Doug Stephen of Merchants Workshop will be tending the bar with a limited menu. We have 30 spots per seating; the first seating starts at 11 am, and our second seating starts at 1 pm.

MENU //

crispy cauliflower with whipped yogurt, rhubarb jam, cauliflower + gruyère chips
oyster mushroom risotto with 63° egg, ramp salsa verde, manchego
triple cooked potatoes with duck prosciutto, sauce Mornay, crispy furikake
smoked pork hock with sourdough bread pudding, pear butter, hazelnut, nasturtium
charred cabbage with chicken + prosciutto crumble, egg yolk gel, sake kasu espuma, bittercress
pistachio lemon tart with rhubarb, honey creme fraiche, meringue shards, sheep sorrel

PARTNERS FOR v2.0 //

When They Find Us
Twin Sails Brewing

Merchants Workshop
Nemesis Coffee

LaStella Winery
Save On Meats

beta5coffee

THIS IS NOT A COFFEE BREAK…With Beta5

This month Beta5 explores rituals that are commonly associated with the idea of a coffee break. but remember… this is not a coffee break.  what’s included // two new products – one chocolate and one pastry (estimated combined retail value // $30) Ticket price just $20

Tickets are limited and product must be picked up from the Vancouver store on either Saturday April 22, or Sunday April 23.

bc place

BC Place Stadium Tours

To Apr 25 Tix $20

The BC Sports Hall of Fame is proud to present an All Access Experience providing an enhanced visit to the Hall of Fame including an exclusive behind the scenes tour of BC Place! The All Access Experience hits all the stadium highlights:

– The Media lounge
– The Premium Suite areas
– The team locker rooms (when available) and
– Access onto the field providing visitors with an amazing viewpoint of BC Place (when available)

The All Access Experience begins and finishes at the BC Sports Hall of Fame. Purchasing a All Access Experience tour ticket also allows entry into the BC Sports Hall of Fame for the same day as your tour.

The All Access Experience tours are available to the general public on specific dates and times. There are 20 spots for each tour time slot and the cost is $20 per person (plus tax).

Celebrate Spring at the Osoyoos Oyster Festival, April 19-23

We’re Planning Our Annual Trek to Osoyoos For the Osoyoos Oyster Festival

No there are not oysters grown right in Osoyoos, but that didn’t stop the founders of the Osoyoos Oyster Festival, from having a vision to give weary oyster farmers a break from the coast and locals and visiting oyster aficionados something to slurp while waiting for all of the spring wines to be released.

Osoyoos Oyster Festival

It’s in the sixth year now and Michael and I will, once again make the journey to the Okanagan, via Kelowna, where we’ll stop for some last minute wedding prep, then continue down the valley to Osoyoos for a few days to feast on oysters and work on our tans. We wouldn’t miss our annual pilgrimage, it’s now our little family tradition.

Osoyoos Oyster Festival

The Osoyoos Oyster Festival returns to the South Okanagan, April 19-23 and showcases a variety of oysters from across the country. Kelowna’s Codfathers Seafood Market will be on hand, Nova Scotia’s Sober Island Oyster Farm will be shucking up a storm, and they’ll be Effingham Oysters and more. We’ll be there for three days checking out the area and the festival’s events. On the agenda is lunch at Burrowing Owl Winery, a visit to Firehall Brewery and Dublin Gate Distilling and stops at several of the wineries. I have to be careful or I won’t fit into my wedding dress. Oh, did I mention I was getting married? I did a few times? Oops.

Osoyoos Oyster Festival

We look forward to seeing Patrick McMurray again, known as “Shucker Paddy”, Patrick is a former World Champion Oyster Shucker and owner of The Ceili Cottage Restaurant in Toronto. He’ll be shucking fresh oysters at events throughout the festival and you’ll be shucking your own oysters in no time with his tips. Trevor and Michelle Munroe from Nova Scotia’s Sober Island Oyster Farm, along with their children, will be shucking east coast oysters at all three signature events, and the Codfathers Family is sure to be on site!Osoyoos Oyster Festival

We’ll be staying at Walnut Beach Resort, as there’s a great heated pool and a licensed beachfront, but many Osoyoos hotels and resorts will be offering special weekend rates for the duration of the festival, as well as “Stay and Savour” packages starting at $569 per couple (includes two nights’ accommodation and tickets to Oyster Festival events). Shuttle service, departing from set Osoyoos-based locations, is available during the following Oyster Festival events: Beach BBQ & Brews, Deep Sea Garden Party and Art of the Pearl Gala.Osoyoos Oyster Festival

For more information about the accommodation packages or the events listed below, please visit: destinationosoyoos.com/osoyoos-oyster-festival.

Beach BBQ & Brews at Watermark Beach Resort, April 21
6:30 pm Tickets: $75
New in 2017 and held on the resort’s stunning beachfront, this lively BBQ-style buffet features seafood and traditional BBQ fare, paired with generous pours of the South Okanagan’s best brews, craft ciders and a signature Canadian Whiskey cocktail. The BBQs will be manned by the following Chefs: Jeff Van Geest of Miradoro; Natasha Schooten from Walnut Beach Resort; Adair Scott from Watermark Beach Resort; and Trevor Munroe of Sober Island Oysters. Tickets available online, here.

Osoyoos Oyster Festival

Deep Sea Garden Party at Walnut Beach Resort, April 22
1 pm Tickets: $60
Family pricing – children under 10, admitted free with an adult; kids 11-18, $25
This afternoon event is held outside on the lawn of Walnut Beach Resort. Guests will sample culinary delights from both land and sea, and sip exceptional wine and beer from local wineries and craft breweries. New this year is the introduction of The Garden Market, with local vendors offering samples, as well as products for sale. A kid’s zone will offer activities and educational items to make this event family-friendly. Tickets available online, here.

Osoyoos Oyster Festival

Art of the Pearl Gala at Spirit Ridge Resort, April 22
6 pm Tickets: $95
This fun, social, grazing soirée is inspired by the ocean and its bounty. Guests will enjoy incredible oyster creations served up by local chefs, along with freshly shucked oysters, and charcuterie offerings, paired with wine samples from the area’s award-winning wineries. More than 10 Okanagan restaurants are participating in this event, including: Mica Restaurant; Liquidity Bistro; Nk’Mip Cellars; The Paisley Notebook; Bonfire Restaurant; Sonora Room; Greenside Grill; Walnut Beach Resort; and Jojo’s Café. Tickets available online, here.

Partner Events:
Long Table Dinner at Miradoro at Tinhorn Creek Winery, April 19
6:30 pm Tickets: $39
Enjoy a special evening, starting with freshly shucked oysters, followed by a three-course dinner dedicated to the oyster. Call 250.498.3742 for tickets.

Under the Tuscan Sea at Terrafina Restaurant at Hester Creek, April 20
6:30 pm
Tickets: $45
Terrafina at Hester Creek Estate Winery invites guests to sample pizza and oysters paired with spring releases from Hester Creek, along with tastings from the winery’s “bubbly” neighbours. Call 250.498.2229 for tickets.

Osoyoos Oyster Festival

Whiskey & Oysters at Sol in the Holiday Inn, April 21
4 – 6 pm Tickets: $65
A great opportunity to try fresh oysters hand-selected by Codfathers Seafood Market, alongside various whiskeys, all while overlooking Osoyoos Lake in the Sol Grill Room & Lounge. With special guest Patrick McMurray (“Shucker Paddy”) in attendance. Call 250.495.7223 for tickets.

Brunch Buffet at Mica Restaurant at Spirit Ridge Resort, April 23
10 am – 1 pm $30
Wrap up the weekend by enjoying a delicious brunch buffet, while taking in views of Osoyoos Lake and the rolling countryside. Includes a complimentary mimosa or caesar. Call 250.495.8007 for reservations.

About Osoyoos
At the gateway to the Okanagan and Similkameen Valleys lies Canada’s only desert, and the lakeside town of Osoyoos. A year-round destination, sunny Osoyoos offers something for everyone, including beaches, swimming, golfing, boating, fishing, wineries, fine dining and more. Visit destinationosoyoos.com.

 

Garagiste North Wine Festival

Garagiste North Wine Festival Announces 2017 Tour Dates: Vancouver/ Parksville/ Penticton

If you’ve ever felt that you don’t get to try the smaller wine producers from around BC, this is the chance for you to sample these hard to find wines. Founders of the Garagiste North Wine Festival, Jennifer Schell and Terry Meyer-Stone, started this unique gathering to celebrate the artisan winemakers that are often too small to join the big festivals. The inaugural festival in 2014 held in Okanagan Falls captured the hearts of the wine-loving crowd who were delighted to taste these exclusive wines and have the opportunity to talk directly to the winemaker. The Garagiste Guild Members together make for one heck of a wine party!

GARAGISTE – (gar-ah-jeest) noun, Fr. : The garagiste originally refers to a group of winemakers in the Bordeaux region of France, producing “vins de garage” or “garage wine”. They were renegade small-lot winemakers, sometimes working in their garage, who refused to follow industry laws and protocol. synonyms: Rebels, pioneers, renegades, individualists, mavericks, driven by passion.

Garagiste North

DATES for this year

VANCOUVER: Saturday April 22nd 4-6:30 pm
Art Works Gallery – 225 Smithe Street
Wine tasting+ live music + Tacofino taco truck + Marquis Wine Cellars pop up shop selling Garagiste wines on site = coolest wine festival ever!
$49 –CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS
TRADE invited from 2-3:30pm pm click to RSVP HERE
(*2 guests per organization please)

PARKSVILLE: Saturday, July 29th 4-6:30 pm
Parksville Museum – 1245 East Island Hwy+ pop up wine shop selling Garagiste wines on site= coolest wine festival ever!
Wine tasting+live music+yummy food
$49 – CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS
Trade/Media please contact for complimentary pass

PENTICTON: Sunday, August 27th 3-5:30 pm
Canadian Tire Garden Centre – 960 Railway Street
Wine tasting+live music+yummy food+Fairview Liquor Store pop up shop selling Garagiste wines on site = coolest wine festival ever!
$49 – CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS
Trade/Media please contact for complimentary pass

Partial proceeds from the Festivals will benefit our Garagiste North Wine Study Scholarship at Okanagan College, helping people in our community get involved in this industry! 

For more information please contact co-founder/co-organizer: Jennifer Schell 250-469-4549 or email garagistenorth@gmail.com

Melting Moments in Morocco

Touring Morocco – A Taste of Moroccan Cuisine

Last year my parents were on the road a fair bit and one of their trips took them to Moroccan. My mother, Suzanne Anderton, was kind enough to contribute this article to GLV!

Morocco

Aching for the exotic? Willing to explore sights and foods you’ve only read about? Then go to Morocco-a well-spring of antiquity about to propel itself into the 21st Century.

In this amazing country  the true meaning of Moroccan food hits you. A blend of French, Berber and Arabian cuisine is cheaply available at in local street side cafes, elegant hotels, kitchens where the women chefs (Dadas) prepare traditional dishes, and  the market food stalls where you may not eat unless you have an iron constitution.

Morocco

With eyes wide open and an accepting mind, travel the expanses of sand, rock and stone deserts, the High Atlas Mountains, and rolling coastines, where you’ll witness the nomads tending  goats and sheep while a donkey stands patiently by. There’ll be a cluster of beehives among native herbs or mimosa trees and that same honey will be at your hotel table to be poured on spongy pancakes,  or fried bread made from delicious squares of folded dough.

Morocco

Traditional tagines of chicken, lamb, fish and beef are loaded with local vegetables – always the onions at the base where they burn a little and give a smoky flavour to the whole dish.

Morocco

Casablanca  was our jumping off point for a three week circuit of the country.    Bargain for some loose clothing in the market,or just buy a scarf or two and you’ll feel like, and be welcomed like, a local.

You may not eat a severed camel’s head, cow’s brains, or chew on a goat leg at the souk in Fez, but the couscous and tagines will wow you with their intense spices and regional variations.

Morocco

Fez is the gourmet centre of the country.  Espresso is divine, Nos Nos –a latte served in a small glass is addictive and any place in the middle of nowhere will serve an excellent coffee.  Iced mint lemonade  replaces a cold beer which is sadly hard to come by.  Mint and green teas are a traditional welcome – ask for the non sweet version if you don’t like to drink sugar disguised as tea!  Morocco has an emerging wine industry and reasonable reds are offered at more expensive restaurants. Olives red, green and black are served at every meal.

Morocco

Watch women peel shrimp at the docks of Essaouira where sardines are the largest export fish or sit in the shade and witness  this fascinating mix of Berber/ Arabian/ French/old and new ,tastes and social mores go by.

Don’t miss Morocco!

Travel with tour guides Denys James of www.DiscoveryArtTravel.com, or arrange a personal  tour with Experience It Toursaaron@experienceittours.com

What’s Good This Week – Easter Weekend Special

What To Do in Vancouver for Easter Weekend?

Folks I’ve been so wrapped up in wedding thingies and my big weight loss challenge that I’ve been running around like a chicken with my head chopped off! AND yes, they sadly do that and really, so do I. I don’t even think I told you I won the challenge, but more about that later. However, I can’t let Easter go by without at least a couple suggestions as I believe in fully celebrating each and every holiday. It’s something I got from my mother, who went out of her way to make my sister feel loved and festive during each season. Thanks for all those little (and big) gifts and for instilling that spirit in us!

I’ll be celebrating this weekend again, as for one it’s my bachelorette party (can’t wait) and for two Easter. Since I can’t invite you all to the girls day/night, you’ll have to make do with some Easter events that I can.rocky

Easter Celebrations at Rocky Mountain Flatbread

A little family suggestions this time around at one of the most tasty pizza places in town, Rocky Mountain Flatbread.

Easter Brunch features for Saturday, April 15 & Sunday, April 16:

  •  Three Eggs Scrambled with Local Ham, Crimini Mushrooms & Red Peppers served on Toast with Fresh Avocado.  Heirloom Tomato Salad on the Side. $13
  • Caesars. $5

Easter Holiday Party, Sunday, August 16, 5 – 7 pm

RM is entertaining the kids during dinner while so you enjoy a glass of wine or a craft beer with the pizza or pasta of your choice. The kids will be busy making their own pizzas with fresh, local and organic ingredients and dyeing Easter eggs with natural veggie dyes! I want to be a kid again! The Easter egg activity is complimentary with the purchase of any entree. Pizza making is $7.95 per child and includes their dinner.  To Reserve: Rocky Mountain Flatbread Main Street: Call 604-566-9779 or email info@rockymountainflatbread.ca

ancora

Ancora Easter Brunch

Treat yourself to a decant Easter Brunch featuring Peruvian style paella, Windberry Farm chicken and waffles, dungeness crab benny and duck confit cassoulet.

Executive Chef Ricardo Valverde will be adding special Easter Weekend features to the other menus to celebrate the occasion. In addition, he is extending his popular  Peruvian Tasting Menu priced at $75 per person (not include wine pairings; available at an additional cost) for the month of April. To reserve, please click here or call the restaurant at 604.681.1164

salty cookie

SWEET POP UP at Les Amis du Fromage! 

The Salty Cookie will be hosting an Easter Weekend Sweet Pop-Up on Saturday April 15 from 11am to 4pm at the East Vancouver les amis du FROMAGE.

The Salty Cookie Company is the dream child of pastry chef Meredith Kaufman. Having been a pastry chef since 1999 and a mom since 2004, cookies have always been a part of her life. What started off as a hobby of dropping off cookies to friends and loved ones, turned into a full time venture. Thus, The Salty Cookie Company was born. Drop by the East Vancouver les amis du FROMAGE between 11am-4pm on April 15 to sample and buy some of her classic cookies,

  • Salty brown sugar
  • Spicy ginger molasses
  • Brown-butter chocolate chip
  • Oatmeal with apricots, candied ginger & white chocolate

Meredith will also be featuring Lemon Hibiscus cookies and a seasonal Whoopie pie.

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WildTale and Flying Pig

Our friends at WildTale have brunch available Friday thru Monday from 11am to 3pm AND their Surf and Turf Sunday will still be available Sunday April 16 as usual, should ham, lamb or turkey not be your thing!

Their sister restaurants, The Flying Pig, in Yaletown, Gastown and Olympic Village celebrate Good Friday with brunch from 11am to 3pm and are open Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 3pm Brunch, and Easter Monday 11am to 3pm. AND for those pork lovers  (ahem), they’ve got Sunday Porchetta Dinner still available on Sunday April 16.

twg

TEA with TWG

TWG Tea’s gorgeous tea room is serving afternoon tea sets complete with recommended tea pairings this weekend.

The Brunch Tea Set is priced at $52 per set and is available on April 14, 15 and 17 from 10:00am to 11:30am, and with 90-minute seatings from 9:30am to 11:30am on Sunday, April 16.

The Easter Tea Set is priced at $58 per set and is available on Sunday, April 16, with 90-minute seatings at 11:30am, 1:30pm, 3:30pm, and 5:30pm.

Children 12 years old and under can enjoy the Mad Hatter’s Tea Set, priced at $30 per set and available on Sunday, April 16 from 9:30am to 5:30pm.

Reservations: Call 604-692-0071 or make an online reservation through OpenTable

cascade room2

Easter Dinner at The Cascade Room, April 16

Head to Main Street for a Sunday Roast dinner with a delicious “Easter Feaster” three-course menu, available during three seatings — at 5 pm, 7 pm and 9 pm.

Along with a choice of soup or salad to start, the menu will feature Cascade Room’s popular mustard-crusted roast beef, served with all the trimmings, including green beans, braised kale, carrot puree, roasted potatoes, yorkshire pudding and rosemary gravy. Roasted butternut squash will be available as a vegetarian option. The meal will finish on a sweet note with a double chocolate brownie topped with rum caramel and vanilla ice cream.

The Cascade Room team has also listed thoughtful wine pairings (available by the glass) for each course. The menu is priced at $32 for three courses (also available a la carte) or $56 with wine pairings.

Reservations are encouraged and can be made online at thecascade.ca/ or by calling the restaurant directly at 604.709.8650.

Easter Feaster at The Cascade Room
Sunday, April 16 at 5, 7 and 9 pm

First Course
$10
fire roasted tomato soup
micro basil, crème fraiche, brioche crouton
suggested pairing: hugging tree viognier 5oz.
or
organic mixed greens
goat cheese, almonds, 20 year balsamic
suggested pairing: bartier bros. semillon 5oz.

Second Course
$18
roast beef dinner
mustard crusted roast beef, green beans, braised kale, carrot puree, roasted potatoes, yorkshire pudding, rosemary gravy
suggested pairing: lock & worth merlot 5oz.
or
roasted butternut squash
green beans, braised kale, carrot puree, roasted potatoes, yorkshire pudding, mushroom gravy
suggested pairing: church & state bordeaux blend 5oz.

Third Course
$8
double chocolate brownie
rum caramel, vanilla ice cream
suggested pairing: okanagan crush pad narrative fortified syrah merlot 2oz.

Gin and Tonic Day With Bombay Sapphire East

Gin and Tonic With Bombay Sapphire East

What’s in your glass today? April 9th is national gin and tonic day, so why not mix one up, hit the patio and catch some of the sunshine we are currently experiencing, and quickly before it disappears! The army of the British East India Company is credited with the creation of the drink. In India malaria was a persistent problem and thankfully a Scottish doctor discovered that quinine could be used to prevent the disease. The habit was to drink in tonic water, but the bitter taste was unpleasant so they then added water, sugar, lime and gin to the drink and voila, a g and t was born!

bombay sapphire east & tonic

We have a lot of favourite very locally made gins, but since Bombay Sapphire East gin was created to specifically compliment the taste of tonic and we just happen to have some handy, we’ll be toasting with something more international today. Bombay added two new botanicals, crisp Thai Lemongrass and spicy Vietnamese Black Peppercorn to this newer bottle and we actually do prefer it over the original. Here’s an easy recipe for you just in case you can’t figure it out on your own.

Bombay Sapphire East Gin & Tonic

  • 1.5 parts Bombay Sapphire East Gin
  • 3 parts premium tonic water
  • Lime wedge
  • Lemon wedge
  • Lemongrass sprig (optional)

Method: Build all with cubed ice. Squeeze one lime wedge and add one lemon wedge and a sprig of lemongrass for garnish.

The Dailey Method – Catching Up With Vancouver Studio Owner Jey Wyder

What Exactly Is This Dailey Method All About?

I’ve been working out at the Dailey Method since about September and I’m totally addicted to their Dailey Cycle Classes and go at least 2 or 3 times a week. The cycle class is 35-40 minutes cycling and then 20 minutes of floor exercises such as planking, bicep curls, sit ups and stretches and I love the combination. These classes are a huge reason I’ve dropped 35 lbs this past while and I love the way the exercises shape my body and the intensity of the cycle gets my heart rate way up!

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The Dailey Method opened its first Canadian location in Vancouver in the summer of 2010 and is is owned by local sisters Karen and Jey Wyder.  Along with the cycle classes they have Dailey Barre, Dailey Fusion, Dailey Interval, an others such as the French spine re-alignment technique, Eldoa,  MELT Method and LifeStretch. I’ve tried samples of them all, but prefer the cycle for the cardio blend. Something like a combination of pilates and yoga, with ballet and barre added in, their classes are an ever-evolving mix of movement and offer the benefits of these many different disciplines.

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From the website……

Each class begins with high rep movements in a very small range of motion, effectively toning, elongating, and isolating the muscles. They focus on the triceps, biceps, shoulders and chest, back, seat, and legs. After working each muscle group, they stretch, shaping and leaning out the muscles, and bringing balance through increased flexibility.  The Dailey Method studios are each led by Dailey Method Master Teachers, ensuring that no matter where your studio, you will experience the most efficient and effective group workout on the planet.

Recently I interviewed the owner, Jey Wyder, to find out a little more about the method here in Vancouver.

What is your fitness background?

Fitness has always been a part of our lifestyle, even before we took this on. Previously, we got our kickboxing yellow belts together and trained and completed a half marathon. I am Vancouver and Canada’s first certified master instructor of The Dailey Method! I was personally trained and certified by founder Jill Dailey, studied yoga and am a certified Pilates Mat instructor teaching throughout Vancouver prior to opening The Dailey Method. I am also certified as a Level 2 The MELT Method instructor and a Lifestretch instructor. Karen is also a trained instructor of The Dailey Method and Level 1 The MELT Method instructor.

Karen discovered The Dailey Method while she was in charge of US Operations for Lululemon and on a business trip in San Francisco. She knew I would love it and it became our dream to bring it to Vancouver. Our passion for fitness, love of working with people and Karen’s expertise in business all came together with this project! JW

Why did you decide to open the Kitsilano Dailey Method studio?

Community is a huge part of this business and when we saw how thrilled the Dunbar community was to have The Dailey Method accessible to them – we wanted to share that in Kits – which, in our opinion, is Vancouver’s fitness mecca. 🙂

What changes have you seen in the fitness world since you opened your first studio?

We have seen more boutique fitness studios and barre studios pop up since we first opened. We have also noticed cycle studios becoming a huge trend.

How are you adapting your classes to the new fitness knowledge that comes out?

Our classes are an ever-evolving mix of movement responding to what exercise science is discovering. We help clients find their neutral spine and pelvis and train their core muscles around this. Our core engagement exercises emphasize our quest for ultimate alignment, learning to stabilize the muscles closest to the spine, improving the natural, functional spine position.

In response to the newest findings about fascia we have developed our Beyond the Barre offerings that enhance client’s workout through restorative, self care classes that address the fascia for life long optimal performance and overall well being. Our Beyond the Barre classes are: The MELT Method, ELDOA, Lifestretch and Yoga. We have also added classes over the years such as Dailey Interval, Dailey Fusion and Dailey Cycle to bring cardiovascular benefits to our client’s workouts.

What is your favourite part about owning The Dailey Method?

Working with each other has been the thrill of a lifetime. And then to be able to get to know and enhance our communities has been the ultimate gift.

What class do you recommend for beginners?

It depends how much of a beginner – Dailey Barre is appropriate for all levels as modifications are offered. Dailey Basics is designed for Beginners or for clients who like a more focused workout. Dailey Gentle is for those who are recovering from surgery, illness or injury and for seniors and new practitioners to provide relief from disabilities and chronic conditions – eg arthritis, back pain and other musculoskeletal issues.

I totally recommend you check this studio out, and can’t wait to my current cold is better so I can get back in there! The first month is only $79 and and after that it’s $225 for unlimited classes and it’s oh so worth it!

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What’s Good This Week in Vancouver – March 29thish +

Events in and Around Vancouver

WHAT? It’s almost April, and this is our Vancouver weather? Well, at least Vancouver is a city that knows how to function in the rain and whether it’s pouring or sunny, we’ve always got a ton to do to distract us. What to do this week? Here’s just a few suggestions.

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March 30 Dining Out For Life

HELP OTHERS ONE SPOONFUL AT A TIME!

On Thursday, March 30, 2017, dine out for breakfast, lunch or dinner at participating restaurants and support people living with HIV/AIDS right here at home.

From Whistler to White Rock and across the Lower Mainland, our fantastic restaurant partners will contribute 25% of their food sales to A Loving Spoonful. All proceeds directly benefit the programs and services they provide free-of-charge, including:

  • An average 100,000 meals per year delivered by volunteers to those affected by HIV/AIDS in Metro Vancouver and surrounding regions
  • Nutritional counselling and meal planning
  • Easter Sundays where chefs donate their time to cook for a group of 50-60 people
  • Family Pantry Program where families receive fruits, vegetables, and other pantry essentials.
  • Snack Packs all clients receive: fresh fruit, yogurt, bread, juice, milk and more.

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Vancouver International Burlesque Festival  March 31 and April 1

The Vancouver International Burlesque Festival  is Canada’s most prestigious and longest running burlesque festival. Showcasing the finest local and international talent since 2006, the VIBF brings global talent and local superstars to downtown Vancouver every spring.

Our City has a rich history of burlesque and cabaret dating back to the Golden Age of Burlesque.  Vancouver has honoured this colourful history by becoming an incubator of cabaret talent and innovation.  The Vancouver International Burlesque Festival was founded in 2006 with an aim to showcase this talent and expose the wonderful people of Vancouver to the intricate art of burlesque. Over the last 10 years this project has grown into a world class cabaret experience. Each year we produce two showcase events highlighting many of the world’s most sought after burlesque performers alongside International Legends from the Golden Age of Burlesque and the best of Vancouver’s Glitteratti. Information.

angels in america

Angels of America Until April 23

Hailed as one of the most important works of 20th-century theatre, Angels in America is a timeless tale of companionship and abandonment that takes place when the personal became political. Set in New York City at the height of the Reagan era and the beginning of the AIDS crisis, Tony Kushner’s modern masterpiece contrasts the lives of five individuals struggling with identity issues alongside the crippling effects of stereotypes and an incurable diagnosis. Through spectacular staging, their stories intersect and crescendo in an exhilarating conclusion that will leave you breathless.

sake

Sakura & Sake Menu

Market by Jean-Georges is celebrating the changing of the seasons with a sakura-inspired tasting menu, available from 1 to 30 April 2017. Created by executive chef Ken Nakano, the Sakura tasting menu pays homage to his Japanese heritage, and is inspired by his mother. Reservations are recommended, and can be made online or by calling 604 695 1115.

Sake-Based Cocktails

As an aperitif to the Sakura menu, guests are encouraged to try the sake-infused cocktails, such as the Sakura Sour made with Junmai Nama Nigori Sake, sakura-infused brandy, lychee, Japanese plum wine, and Strawberry Mah Kwan bitters.  Each cocktail uses award-winning Osake sake from Artisan SakeMaker, handcrafted on Granville Island by sakemaker Masa Shiroki. Osake is Canada’s first locally produced fresh premium

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Burdock & Co’s Harvest lunchtime pop-up Wednesday, March 29 – 31 from 12:00pm – 2:00pm

Burdock & Co, 2702 Main Street, Vancouver, British Columbia V5T 3E8.  Burdock & Co is bringing the spring harvest to Mount Pleasant. Stop by and grab a bowl of hot ramen, crafted by Chef Gabriella Meyer of Harvest Community Foods using fresh local produce and sustainably sourced meats. Noodle bowls include classic ramen creations and vegetarian options. Menu includes: Burdock & Co’s famous Fried Chicken and Duck Tonkotsu Ramen with Onsen Egg and Bacon Tsukemen with Dipping Noodles and Harvest Pork Ramen with Candied Bacon and a Vegetarian option Seating is available on a first-come, first-serve basis

harvest community foods ramen with squash miso broth, diakon, nori and sesame

 

BMISmart Weight Loss Challenge

My BMISmart Journey to Better Health

For those who’ve been following me of late, you may have noticed a lot more posts on health, fitness and good food on Good Life Vancouver and on our social media accounts. AND you may have noticed pictures of me where I appear, slightly smaller, AND that’s because I am, and it’s thanks to BMISmart.

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Since January 18th I have had the good fortune to have been selected to participate in a Weight Loss Challenge, sponsored by BMI Smart, that included using their weight loss supplement, I-REMOVE. I’ve been taking I-REMOVE since then and their representatives kindly set us up with both an awesome nutritionist, Ashley Freeman, and a very nice, but certainly tough, trainer, Kate McNulty. We also met this superb women who became like a sister to us, Amber B., who, along with the winner from the Utah Challenge, Amy E., were are biggest cheerleaders along the way. Amber had our back so many times and virtually held our hands along this path! BMISmart is all about promoting a healthy lifestyle in conjunction with taking the supplements, because they know it’s a life long habit changes, and not just a quick fix, that will bring you success.

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Here’s Kate and I at the Wellness Show where she was showcasing her Vidadish portion control dish. Isn’t she cute? Yes she is, but she is also very tough and knows how to maximize your time in the gym!

How it works – I-REMOVE Reduce Fat absorption

I-REMOVE includes the patented Litramine Fat Binder — a proprietary blend of enriched cactus prickly pear and acacia-based fibre complex, scientifically demonstrated to reduce dietary fat absorption. The binding properties of Litramine Fat Binder attract fat molecules and increase their elimination by up to 28.39%, promoting weight loss with results up to three times more effective than dieting and exercise alone.

For an incentive they are choosing two winners at the end of the 12 weeks, who will become brand ambassadors, receive $1,000 cash and wardrobe valued at $500 as well as more I-REMOVE to use for the rest of the year. If you know me, I play to win, so I am busy keeping my eye on the prize, while also enjoying the real prize, which has been a healthier, happier, and smaller me! To win it’s not all about the weight, the criteria include body fat and weight statistics (and those have been dropping too, along with weight), ability to motivate and share (and you know I love to share), strong screen presence (ahem), use of the product (why on earth would I even miss a dose?), participation in weekly fitness and nutrition (made almost all the meetings, there were a couple schedule conflicts because, you know, life), ability to attend the final photo shoot (that’s NEXT WEEK and I’ve already got an outfit planned, actually two!), and agreement to allow images to be used for marketing (of course I agree, I’m darn proud of my results).

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It’s been an interesting 10 weeks, that is for certain as I’ve learned so much more than how to portion properly, or how to hold a squat for a lot longer, just samples of the things I thought might be the most important.  The whole process involved a group of women, some of whom I’ve really gotten to know, and as the weeks went on, I began cheering so much more for them as well as my self, because I have really become happier and have learned more empathy for myself and, in turn, have the ability to empathize with others, especially those in my situation. We’ve sweated together, shared our nutritional challenges, taken funny pictures and really let our guard down around each other. This became so much more than a competition I wanted to win; I now want us all to win and I know the other ladies wish so too.

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We’ve shared ups and downs on social media, shredded tears on group calls, met up for additional bonding over yoga and smoothies and truly supported each other along the way. Do I still want to win? Well, of course I do, but I feel there’s so much more than the cash that is driving me, as I am learning I’m inspiring my friends and those around me and although the journey isn’t easy, this system works and I’m here as proof! I have so many good things to share that I know will help people change their attitude and therefore their health. I’m learning a ton of self-love and I want others to feel their worth too!

Amber fom the BMISmart team is so nice that she even made a video of the first part of my journey.

We’re now in week 10 and I’m a little scared the journey is coming to the end, but I also know that this is not the end of anything. I’ve got new habits and new attitudes and I know I’ll be seeing these ladies again as we are now like sorority sisters (or something like it)! We’ve been through so much together, and learned to lean on each other and I know we’ll want to keep track of how much further we will all be going!

So wish us all luck for the next ten days and for next Thursday for when the winners will be announced. I certainly hope you think I’m worthy and I know I’ll be inspiring others whether I become an official ambassador or not!

Most important lessons I’ve learned:

Don’t weigh yourself any more than once a week! The scale does not determine your value or your health. Muscle weighs more than fat. Rely on your clothes and how they feel.

Losing weight is even harder when you’re older. #WERK

Don’t let trying to be perfect get in the way of being very damn good.

Switch up your exercise and do those short pushes of intense workouts and make them damn hard and work!

You can’t just eat a little more and exercise it off (unfortunately) = food is REALLY KEY!!!!

All sugars aren’t equal.

Empathy for myself and for others!

Group support is gold! Both in this group and when I go for my long runs! I need support so very much more now and I am relying on other people more in a very good way.

AND despite going in to this really wanting to win, I care a lot more about everyone else in this group being happy than I ever thought and winning matters WAY LESS. Although I still do want to win as I really feel I have a great message to share!

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As they say in yoga…..NAMASTE! AND as I say DON’T BE AFRAID TO SWEAT!

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