Weekend Highlights: Burritos + Christmas Decorating

I hope you all had a nice weekend. For those of you who celebrated Thanksgiving, I hope it was full of good food and your favorite people. My weekend wasn’t too exciting. I didn’t go shopping on Black Friday (I would much rather shop online, even if I am missing out on some deals). Today I’m sharing a recap of how I kept busy.

Saturday afternoon I stopped by the dollar store to get a few more of these totes. They’re perfect for storing stock for my Etsy shop. I wasn’t expecting the dollar store to be quite as busy as it was. Thankfully I knew what I needed and I was in and out pretty quickly. I’m one of those people who likes to goes into stores knowing what they need to get – I don’t like browsing.

I spent Saturday night with my boyfriend. We decided on getting takeout from Native Tongues, an amazing Mexican restaurant here in Calgary. They only do burritos for takeout, so I went with the beef one. Us usual with everything that I’ve tried from Native Tongues, the burrito was delicious. We even got their donas (donuts) for dessert. I hadn’t tried them before, but my boyfriend had. He knew how amazing they were and was waiting for my reaction when I took my first bite. It was so much better than any other donut I’ve ever had. Apparently they make them to order so that they’re super fresh.

Sunday afternoon I got out the Christmas decorations and started working on getting them up. I’m thinking it’ll take another day or so to get the tree up. I’m trying to organize and get rid of some of the things that we don’t need anymore. We have SO MUCH Christmas stuff. We have a whole tote full of indoor Christmas lights. There’s no way that we need that many. It’s amazing how it accumulates over time.

I spent some time this weekend reading The Drowning Kind (affiliate link) by Jennifer McMahon. I’ve been in a bit of a reading slump the last month or so, so I’m glad I’m reading a The Drowning Time because it’s so good! It’s one of those books that’s hard to put down.

Friday Favorites: New Cards in my Etsy Store + Elf Cereal

Happy Friday! It’s felt like a long and busy week for me so I’m looking forward to the weekend. I don’t have much planned other than spending some time with my boyfriend, but that sounds perfect to me. It’s been awhile since I’ve last written a Friday favorites post, so I’m excited to share the items below.

New cards in my Etsy store

I don’t share it very much here on the blog, but I have a stationery shop on Etsy. I have everything from notecards to stickers to lined envelopes for sale over there. This week I picked up a few new notecards that I designed. I think my favorite out of the bunch is the flamingo notecard. It’s always exciting to pick up new products from the printers – I’m never totally sure how they’ll turn out. I’m really happy with these ones though.

New library book

I picked up a couple holds this week at the library and The Drowning Kind (affiliate link) by Jennifer McMahon was one of the books waiting for me. I think I’ve read 4 of her both books and I enjoyed them all. Jenifer manages to write books with the perfect mix of mystery, thrills, and paranormal. I’m only a few chapters in so far but I’m enjoying it so far.

Here’s the synopsis from Goodreads:

When social worker Jax receives nine missed calls from her older sister, Lexie, she assumes that it’s just another one of her sister’s episodes. Manic and increasingly out of touch with reality, Lexie has pushed Jax away for over a year. But the next day, Lexie is dead: drowned in the pool at their grandmother’s estate. When Jax arrives at the house to go through her sister’s things, she learns that Lexie was researching the history of their family and the property. And as she dives deeper into the research herself, she discovers that the land holds a far darker past than she could have ever imagined.

In 1929, thirty-seven-year-old newlywed Ethel Monroe hopes desperately for a baby. In an effort to distract her, her husband whisks her away on a trip to Vermont, where a natural spring is showcased by the newest and most modern hotel in the Northeast. Once there, Ethel learns that the water is rumored to grant wishes, never suspecting that the spring takes in equal measure to what it gives.

Elf Cereal

My boyfriend sent me a picture of Elf cereal when he found it while grocery shopping this week. He knows I’m a huge fan of Elf (really who isn’t?!?!). I ended up popping into the grocery store to get a box. I love that it says it includes elves’ favorite food – candy, candy canes, candy corn, and syrup. While I haven’t actually tried any of the cereal yet, I really hope I like it.

I read somewhere that Elf was released 18 years ago this month. It’s hard to believe that it’s been that long. I remember going to see it with friends when I was in university. Apparently it’s been 18 years since I was a university student! It doesn’t feel like it’s been that long though.

I don’t have much planned for the weekend. I’m pretty sure that I’ll be spending some time curled up under a blanket reading The Drowning Kind. Spending some time at my boyfriend’s place will also probably happen as well. I’ve had a busy week with a bunch of appointments, so I’m looking forward to enjoying my down time.

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Birthday Weekend

I’m another year older as of Sunday!

I celebrated by birthday this last weekend. Next year will be a big one for me, so I’ll be enjoying this year before I move up to a new decade. Below is the artwork that a friend’s daughter drew inside my card. I told her that I was impressed with all of the details she included. I was able to spend some time on Saturday night with a few friends. It felt so good to see them – it had been awhile since I’d seen a couple of them.

It was another low key birthday thanks to Covid. It’s hard to believe that this is the second pandemic birthday for me. I’m really hoping that next year things will be closer to normal. I celebrated Sunday night with my dad and brother. We ordered Shawarma for my birthday dinner which I really enjoyed. It was really good. We finished off the night with a vanilla birthday cake that I had made earlier in the day. I’m still trying to figure out how I want to spend my birthday money. On the list is a black quilted Kate Spade bag from a consignment store downtown. Does anyone else have a hard time deciding how to spend money or gift cards that they’ve been gifted?

This week has been busy so far. I’ve had a bunch of medical appointments with a couple more to go later on this week. I’ll be glad once they’re done. Most of them are tough appointments with tough conversations. I was able to get in some quality time with my boyfriend and his dog yesterday. We went on a walk and then hung out for a bit afterwards. It always feels good when his dog gets so excited to see me – he gets so wiggly and full of kisses.

Friday Favorites: Garden Harvest + Vote By Mail

I’m sharing a few of my favorite things in this blog post.

Happy Friday! Another week is just about done and I’m looking forward to the weekend. I don’t have much planned for the weekend, but I do know that I’ll be working on getting some more products listed in my Etsy store. I’ll be sure to share on the blog once everything is up!

Garden harvest

This week I picked the last of what was left in the garden. The forecasted overnight lights were supposed to get close to freezing, so I figured I would pick everything (even if it wasn’t quite ripe yet) than risk it freezing and ruined. I picked a couple pounds of potatoes, a bunch of tomatoes (the green ones will ripen nicely inside), a couple small peppers and even two teeny tiny broccolis.

When I was picking the tomatoes I was shocked at how many there were. I kept thinking I had gotten them all off a plant and then I’d find another bunch or two on it. My dad has already made pasta sauce with a bunch of the tomatoes. It was so good! You could definitely tell that it was made from tomatoes that had only been picked 24 hours ahead of time. It just tasted so fresh. I’m looking forward to lots of tomatoes on sandwiches, salads, and even pasta sauce as the green ones ripen.

Voting by mail

Back in August a federal election was called by the Prime Minister. Election day is Monday, September 20th (it must be seem like such a super short process compared to federal elections in the United States). I’ve been doing my best to keep my risk of getting Covid as low as I can, so I was feeling hesitant about going to vote in person on election day. I decided to vote by mail for the first time. I’m happy to say that it was super easy and definitely something that I would do again. You’re instructed to seal your ballot in a couple different envelopes. One of them has your voter info on it so that they can verify that I’m an eligible voter. That envelope is then removed and the inner envelope that holds my ballot is unmarked, so it’s cast anonymously just like if I were to vote in person.

On Wednesday I dropped my ballot off at the post office. I’m glad that it’s done and I don’t have to worry about waiting in line or going into a polling place on Monday. My brother decided to try voting in advance. He went on the first day that it was offered and was happy that there was no one else there voting while he was there. My dad also decided to vote by mail. I would definitely vote by mail again. It was super easy to do, and I was able to do it on my own time. The only think you have to make sure you do is request a mail in ballot ahead of time.

If you’re a Canadian who hasn’t voted yet, make sure to get out and vote in advance or go to your polling place on Monday. It’s so important that your voice is heard. You deserve to have a say in how things are done in Canada.

Do you have anything fun planned for the weekend? Let me know in the comments below.

My Favorite Peloton Instructors

In today’s post I’m sharing some of my favorite instructors on the Peloton app.

I haven’t been to the gym since February or March 2020. It’s hard to believe that it’s been so long already. As much as I’m missing it, I don’t feel comfortable going back yet. Cases are rising here in Calgary and additional restrictions were put in place on Friday due to the increase in Covid hospital admissions. I decided to sign up for the Peloton app (check out my review of it here) because at home workouts are a lot easier for me if I have someone else telling me exactly what to do. It’s funny because if I’m working out at the gym I don’t have a problem with motivation. But at home it feels like there’s way more distractions. In this post I’ll be sharing my favorite instructors.

One of the very first classes on the app was with Andy Speer. Since that class I’ve been hooked on his workouts. I’ve done more of his workouts than anyone else on the Peloton app. He does all kinds of classes – from strength to treadmill to cycling.

Kristin McGee is my favorite yoga teacher on Peloton. I’ve been a fan of hers for 20ish years. The fact that she had classes on the app was a big reason that I decided to take the plunge and sign up. She’s well known in the yoga community. I really enjoy her classes and she has a great presence when she’s teaching.

Chase Tucker is a down to earth instructor, which draws me to his classes. He’s really good at being encouraging without being annoying. I think just about everyone has taken a fitness class with someone who’s just over the top peppy and it just annoys you. That’s definitely not the case with Chase.

As for treadmill workouts, I really like Matty Maggiacomo’s workouts. I don’t have a Peloton treadmill, but I do have a treadmill. With the app I’m able to do the treadmill workouts just as good.

In terms of the mediations that Peloton offers on their app, my favorite instructors are Ross Rayburn and Chelsea Jackson Roberts. They both have soothing voices, which makes them easy to listen to. The meditations vary in length from just a few minutes to longer ones. I think they’re a great introduction to meditation if you’re new to it.

Who’s your favorite instructor on the Peloton app? Tell me in the comments below.