Wednesday, May 31, 2006

the big apple with the little apple

as previously mentioned, we were in nyc for the weekend.
I haven't been since lulu was born and I really needed a fix.
I must admit I was a bit apprehensive about taking lulu to new york.
My parents have offered many times to look after her for a weekend, but we really wanted to take her with us.
plus, in all honestly,I still can't handle more than a few hours away from her at a time.
I just can't get enough of her.
I guess I was worried that it would be more work than fun.
I was wrong.
the flight was a breeze.
the hotel was excellent, and provided us with a brand new crib. she loved it.
we decided to stay midtown instead of union square, because we wanted to be close to central park, for lulu.
as far as her nap schedule (which I have mastered...well at least for now) was fine.
we usually had breakfast and she would snooze in the stroller for a few hours (perfect shoe shopping time for mommy)
then she would just wake up and start smiling at pretty much everyone in manhattan, oh, and blowing kisses.
we went to all the usual suspects.
FAO schwartz. which was so much fun, she scored some good loot let me tell you.
American Girl. dolls dolls and more dolls. we actually had lunch in their cafe, which was pretty cute.
I think there was one poor little boy in the restaurant. it was a full on estrogen-fest.
they didn't even have men's washrooms! poor kid.
big daddy was a trooper for putting up with that place. think pink and flower power.
I think secretly he was loving every minute of it. or at least loving watching lulu go into mini spasms of excitement.
we went to the central park zoo and bryant park. that was definitely the highlight of the weekend.
we didn't venture down to Soho or the meat packing district like the good ol' days for dinner,
we just found a few places close to the hotel (44th & 5th Ave.) which was much easier than dealing with jumping in and out of cabs.
actually we would go back to the hotel around 5ish, feed lulu dinner, give her a bath and put her in her pj's.
then we would head out for dinner at around 7ish, walk a few blocks until she fell asleep, then have a long and relaxed dinner with her all cozy and sleeping peacefully beside us in her stroller.
we managed to do this three nights in a row!
I'm talkin' pre dinner cocktails, appetizers, dinner, wine AND dessert and coffee.
this was amazing to us.
we might have to try this here at home.
why haven't we tried this before??
anyhow we really had such a great time.
just the three of us, no other relatives (which is the case with most of our out of town trips)
not that there is anything wrong with visiting family, but it was kind of romantic to just be together on our 6th anniversary including lulu.
travelling with her is such a joy. It's like we are experiencing everything for the first time through her eyes.
she even does a little whoosh sign with her tiny hand for airplane. too cute.
also having a child with you seems to make you more open to talking to people everywhere.
so I had the best anniversary yet (and we have had some really great ones)
but mostly thanks to the most amazing partner any girl could hope for.
thanks big daddy.
you're the best.
happy anniversary. xo

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

up up & away

just returned from a fun weekend away.
it was big daddy and my 6th anniversary.
so we spontaneously decided to go to new york for the weekend.
Friday we woke up and said "let's go to NYC this weekend"
a few hours later, the three of us were on a flight to laguardia.
I don't know what was more fun, being there, or deciding last minute to go.
we are both big planners, so it made it all the more fun to just go with the flow.
Having a baby in new york is a blast.
It's an entirely different experience.
lulu loved every minute of it and so did we.
I will definitely write more tomorrow, I'm completely exhausted at the moment.
we walked what seemed like the entire length of manhattan and it was hot hot hot outside.
so that's all for now.
time to rest the dogs, cause they are barkin'.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

fisher price central

both big daddy and I are not big on clutter.
in fact we are a bit obsessive about it.
our friends think we are organization freaks.
fine by us.
so when we had a baby (or more accurately when I had the baby) we vowed not to let it become fisher price central in the house.
I bought matching brown woven baskets and placed them strategically throughout the house for toys.
we kept the amount of toys we bought to a minimum and good children's books to a maximum.
we spent hours at masterminds on yonge st. trying to find great educational (yet aesthetically pleasing) toys for a one year old.
there are no playpens, or big plastic thingies everywhere.
even the highchair is plain white.
it's very calming.
for weekly doses of primary colours and plastic we take lulu to gymboree.
I really think kids can be overly stimulated by so much choice.
It probably sounds nuts. but so far it is working.
she has such a calm disposition.
my parents recently bought her a fairly large plastic car, and plastic wheelbarrow.
they had odd smirks on their faces when they handed them to me....
anyhow, she likes the stuff, but doesn't love it.
she's not big on noisy toys either.
yesterday she actually put her hands over her ears when the "wheels on the bus" song started playing on her electronic leapfrog bus. I swear the volume control does not go low enough.
anyhow, maybe we have rubbed off on her.
when she is sitting quietly looking a a book, or stacking her pastel coloured wooden blocks from Kolkid,
I couldn't be more proud.

good ol'

it occurred to me after re-reading my last post that I sound a little foodie pretentious.
not to say that anyone implied that, in-fact thanks for all the nice comments, much appreciated.
I just thought it did sounds a tad obnoxious.
amuse bouche was a bit much if I do say so myself.
But there are three things that I am really passionate about in life:
#1. my husband a.k.a. Big Daddy
#2. my 1 year old daughter -whom I can't imagine life without.
#3. food- which I also can't imagine life without. in-fact there would be no life without it.
But not everyday is spent making reductions and 5 course meals.
In-fact some days we just have good ol' pasta and veg.
Pre-lulu we used to eat out ALL the time. probably 5 times a week for dinner and lunch was almost always catered or take-away at work.
But I actually got pretty sick of that.
sooo much variety can sometimes make you start jonesing for a grilled cheese dipped in ketchup.
But now we really don't go out for dinner so much.
well every Friday we go out, but it's with lulu and it's @ 5:30. so it's not exactly a gourmet experience.
so I have really taken to my kitchen in the past year.
I absolutely love cooking.
some people can't stand it, I know.
In-fact I grew up in a house hold where my mother COULDN'T cook.
I'm surprised I'm still alive to write that, and never died of food poisoning!
My dad usually did the cooking,
but as soon as I was permitted to touch the stove I took over. well at least a few nights a week.
you either love it or hate it.
and I do love it.
it's the cleaning up I'm not so passionate about.

Sunday, May 21, 2006


we had some friends for dinner last night, initially we were going to celebrate their engagement.
then they announced even bigger news, that they are expecting.
it seems as though every-time we have friends for dinner they tell us about being pregnant.
this is the fourth time this has happened this year.
we are thrilled for all of them.
we were the first of our group of friends to have a baby,
now it seems like everyone is expecting or has just had a baby.
Two very good friends just had baby boys in the past two weeks. (congrats to them)
so we ended up toasting with some bubbly, then moved onto the vino.
of course mom-to-be didn't partake, but but that didn't prevent us from making too many toasts to remember.
I was good all week, and a little indulging from time to time is a good thing.
the food was excellent; if I do say so myself.
we started with artichoke crostini with prosecco. cheers!
then we had a seared scallop with pancetta as an amuse bouche.
it was so pretty and simple to make. I served it on a small white shell topped with a tiny sprig of thyme.
served with a Louis latour chardonnay. cheers!
then we had a tomato and fennel soup. again, so delish, and super easy to make.
served with a syrah.cheers!
for our main course we had herb encrusted beef tenderloin & tarragon green peas with a port reduction.
served with an amazing red from tuscany-Lodola Nuova-riserva good. Cheers! (said with a slight slur)
and for dessert we had chocolate mousse.
no more liquor, thankfully just herbal tea.
I'm still full. but everything was so tasty, and relatively healthy. (the chocolate mousse was from a light cook-book, so I didn't feel too guilty)
but both big daddy and I are a little rough around the edges today, all that clean living all week makes me even more of a lightweight than I already am.
so I'm back on the health wagon as of today.
well, after we get back from dim sum.
nothing beats a hangover better than shu mai.

Friday, May 19, 2006


just when I thought lulu couldn't physically get any cuter, today she did.
every day she seems to get brighter and brighter.
and by brighter I mean sparkly and full of life.
she has recently started making her version of a meowing sound.
it sounds more like eehhooww..but it's so damn cute.
we don't even have a cat.
though a neighbourhood kitty has set up camp on our front porch.
she is fascinated.
we used to get annoyed by it because it would spray the flower pots and the car.
nothing like the lovely smell of cat pee greeting you first thing in the morning when opening the door to retrieve the morning paper...
Now we look for this cat, just so we can watch lulu's reaction.
I swear having a child can really bring out the best in a person.
so in addition to her verbal impersonations she has discovered the warmth of the warm sun on the kitchen floor in the morning.
she sets up camp in the middle of the floor, sometimes sprawled out, on the sunny spot.
such a cute little kitten.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

ipod woes

lost-one ipod.
I'm totally bummed.
I left it at the gym yesterday and of course no-one turned it in.
so someone out there is listening to MY music.
I kept eyeing everyone at the gym today to see if they might have the audicity to be wearing it.
see what you get when you finally haul ass and go to the gym!
ah well, could have been worse, it could have been my wallet or keys or something even more annoying to replace.
I just downloaded Sigur Ros "svefn G Englar" for a nice cool down stretching session. damn.
day# four of my belly banishment challenge.
going well, I dropped 2 lbs!
3 lbs more to go to be back where I started pre: lulu.
(8 lbs more and I'll be ecstatic)
doesn't seem like much but they are the hardest to shed.
aside from pure vanity, I have to admit, no alcohol, no chocolate and lots of excercise has been making me far less moody.
(and this is supposed to be my "moody" week, I will refrain from using the term bitchy, though big daddy might disagree)
but we are entering a long weekend tomorrow- May "two-four" eh. and I just wanna give-er...kidding.
awe, I could be listening to "every bodies work'in for the weekend..everybody's goin' off the deep end.." by lover boy on my Sony Walkman...I mean ipod.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006


so it's day three of the battle of the bulge.
got on the scale today and it's looks about the same as yesterday.
I want instant results and I want them now!
I know this is not possible, but a girl can dream can't she?
I'm not "dieting" I'm just..well, I'm not sure what I'm doing..but I'm hoping for some improvement.
Tonight when I got home in the pouring rain I instantly felt like take-out.
Chinese or even pizza.
My craving was triggered buy me sitting in the car in my driveway waiting for lulu to wake up (didn't have the heart to drag her out of the car in the pouring rain until she had a full 45 min nap) and watching a pizza delivery guy pull up to the house next to mine.
I felt like pretending that it was us that ordered it.
"excuse me, yoohoo! it's actually us that ordered that warm, cheesy, yummy pizza"...I couldn't do it.
besides I think my neighbour was watching me from the window wondering what the hell I'm doing sitting in my car in my drive way for 20 minutes. busted.
so it was sautéed swiss chard and acorn squash for was okay,
but a pizza would have been soooo much better.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

battle of the bulge

so it's day two of my path to losing the baby belly once and for all.
I've said it before, but really, enough is enough.
I have to do something and do it now.
I'd love to lose those last clinging 5 lbs...can't seem to shake 'em.
10 lbs would be fantastic...
I can't quite figure out why though.
I'm quite active and on the go most of the time.
I think I eat pretty well.
smoothie & coffee for breakfast
2-3 glasses of water
salad or wrap for lunch
2 glasses of water
dinner is usually well balanced and varied...lots of chicken and fish and veg. red meat only once a week
2 glasses of water or herbal tea (usually mint)
I do have a sweet tooth though, and can't seem to finish the day without some form of chocolate.
this could be the culprit..but I just CAN'T give up dessert!
and oh, I usually don't drink during the week, an occasional glass of red wine.
weekends we have been known to polish off a bottle or two.
But that can't be all that bad, I mean red wine is an anti-oxidant..right??
and a girls gotta have some fun.
I've never had a Daisy Fuentes type bod, and my...ahem..midsection has never even come close to resembling a six pack.
More like a keg.
okay I'm being hard on myself.
But I am constantly checking out other moms bods, and it seems to me that there are alot of very fit chicks out there!
Flat tummies pushing around double strollers...How the hell do they do it??
I'm at a loss.
The winter isn't so bad, you can throw on a sweater and coat and who knows what's lurking underneath.
but it's almost summer..argh!
the thought of bathing suits makes me break into a cold sweat...
so that's it. no chocolate tonight. no wine. no fun.
it's only Tuesday, can I make it to Friday? (that's my Jessica simpson cheat day)
yum..roasted carrots, broccoli and skinless turkey breast.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

happy mother's day

today was really no different than any other, very low key.
my kind of day.
I had an extra hour of sleep this morning (thanks big daddy) though in all fairness he usually gets up with lulu on the weekends anyhow.
but she's a good little sleeper and usually sleeps until 7:30 +so we all end up getting up together, hanging in our bed, drinking coffee and playing and reading.
great way to start the day.
we had our morning smoothies...same as everyday.
I put lulu down for her morning nap...same as everyday.
I took a long hot bath..this was a treat. Haven't done that in a while.
big daddy and I had brunch together while lulu napped from 11-1 p.m..little darling.
I swore I wasn't going to succumb to the bakeries on the street, but we did indulge in some warm whole wheat bread and poached eggs (with my new egg poacher...mother's day gift) it's the gift that keeps on giving.
big d. also sent me a beautiful bouquet of flowers from Teatro Verde on Friday, very sweet of him.
we took a stroll through the 'hood and hit the park for a swing..same as everyday.
big d. is giving lulu her bath and then we will have some dinner...same as everyday.
so mother's day this year was very relaxing and uneventful.
fine by me.
I don't need any new toys or trinkets to feel appreciated.
Nor do I expect some big hoopla.
Just the fact that I could spend the day with my two favourite people was enough for me.
so I hope all my fellow mommy bloggers had a wonderful and relaxing mother's day.
maybe some of you had the whole breakfast in bed, Sunday brunch thing, complete with home-made cards from the kiddies.
Or maybe some of you got the L.V. bag that you had your eye on.....
however you spent the day, I hope it was a good one.
happy mother's day!

Saturday, May 13, 2006

happy b-day big daddy

well I'm a little late in my blog birthday wishes.
big daddy's birthday way actually may 10th.
I did remember though.
we had dinner at home with some friends who happen to share the same birthday.
I cooked all his a good wifey.
antipasto platter with lots of good stuff.
primi- wild mushroom ravioli with a drizzle of truffle olive oil and Parma cheese shaving.
secondi-bbq cumbrea's steak with a garlic thyme balsamic marinade served with grilled radicchio and grilled fennel.
dessert was some Sicilian pistachio home-made (not by me) gilatto & biscotti.
the way to my man's heart is definitely though his stomach.
The theme was Italian, which also included a bunch of travel books on Italy.
we finally booked a trip for the fall.
looking forward to that.
anyhow a busy week but still trying to soak up all the beautiful colours and smells of spring.
so many birthday's, mothers' day and coming soon- anniversary.
such a great time of year.
so sorry big daddy that I forgot to post a birthday wish for you on my blog on wednesday..
too busy "slaving" over a hot bbq. and opening all the store bought jars of antipasto......

Sunday, May 07, 2006

good vs. evil

okay i guess good vs. evil is a bit dramatic of a title.
heirloom tomatoes vs. saucisson from Quebec and soft brie from bath England isn't exactly good vs. evil.
but for me lately it is.
in the last few months not one but TWO bakeries have opened in my 'hood.
an already great cheese shop, renovated and re-located on the block.
A kick-ass butcher shop moved "up-town" carerra marble and all...the place could convert even the most die hard of my vegan friends...well maybe not.. but I'm sure even they would appreciate the impeccable standards in which these animals have given their lives for us carnivores to enjoy.
nothing but the best in this place.
within a year, my neighbourhood has become a foodie Mecca.
not in my wildest dreams could it have become so good.
but forget about "carb-free" diet.
I mean, I can smell the wood-burning fire, baking the cities... no, make that, the countries (screw Montreal) bagels from my front door step.
the bread baking at the amazing bakeries, the bbq smell that is best described as...well...July....ahhhh.
food food everywhere.
so what is a girl to do?
will I ever shed these last 5 post baby lbs??
how can I?
pilates/gym/yoga..power walking...all futile.
the yoga place is above the cheese shop.
the pilates place is above the gelato shop.
the gym is next door to the supermarket.
power walking...well I HAVE to walk by the bakeries for gods sake!!!!
lord help me...

Friday, May 05, 2006

room service

so last weekend was fun.
uncle p-diddy was here for a quick visit.
it's lots of fun when he comes to town.
big daddy and his big bro are super close, and it's great when work brings him to T.O.
Lulu had fun and really loves her uncle p.
She has 4 uncles total,
well...5 if you include her uncle in-law who is married to big daddy's oldest brother-uncle abracadabra.
no aunties....well I guess my brother's new wife counts as her aunt.
But since no one has even met her, it feels strange calling her lulu's aunt.
They live in Taiwan, and not sure when I'll see my brother next. It's been around 5 years or so. Time flies.
It does make me sad that lulu probably won't get to know my only brother.
We have really drifted apart over the years.
We were close when we were younger and we didn't have a falling out anything dramatic like that,
we are both just really opposite.
I do try, but Taiwan is pretty far away and he really isn't overly interested in his family.
I feel really bad for my mom, it must really hurt when your child excludes you from his/her life.
we both had the same up bringing
so I'm not sure what's up with "uncle ringo" I hope he comes around but he is 32 years old,
and he's not some rebellious teenager anymore, so I just hope he eventually matures and realizes that family is THE most important thing in life.
well at least it is to me.
but fortunately big daddy has three older brothers whom I adore.
I'm also lucky to have them in my life as well as lulu's.
really looking forward to a reunion in June when all the brothers will be in the same city for the first time since we were married almost six years ago!
time flies..
I said that already, didn't I?