Posts Tagged ‘Winter’


For a change, I’m ready for winter. I will be honest, winter is not my favourite season so I have no idea why I’m smiling in this photo! However I have winter tires on my car, a brand new hat to keep me warm ,a new scarf, a new Uniqlo jacket, new Kombi mitts, and new Olang boots. I’m completely prepared!



Specifically I want to share my love for these Olang boots. Not only are they warm but they are lightweight and comfortable too. (insert applause).


These boots have a unique folding ice cleat at the bottom which I know will make me feel more secure on those slippery wintery days. Pretty cool feature, non?


Olang offers fashionable winter boots for men, women and kids too. If you click here, you can enter your postal code to find out the nearest location to you that carries these incredible boots.

My new winter Kombi mitts are going to help me out this winter too. As a sales rep I spend a lot of time driving and this year I can drive with warm hands (and warm feet). winter-mitts

Their specially engineered membrane allows sweat to escape and prevents water from penetrating.  I have no doubt that these mitts will keep me warm, dry and comfortable for the next few months (unless I lose one…arghh).

I’m convinced that warm feet and warm hands will make this winter a little more bearable for me.

Wishing everyone a warm winter!! (that doesn’t involve a lot of snow shovelling)

For more information:




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Fact: This is the first year I have ever bought winter tires. (insert: applause)

winter - tire

It felt like the right thing to do seeing as I spend quite a bit of time on the roads as a sales rep. Plus I understand that I can save money on my insurance if I have winter tires. (note to self: call my insurance provider tomorrow).

I explored getting my winter tires from Costco or getting my tires from Canadian Tire.

Here’s what happened at Costco:

-I approached the friendly clerk who told me that I had to go online and book an appointment or come back at 6:30 am.

Here’s what happened at my local Canadian Tire (Lawrence and the Allen).

-I approached the friendly clerk who told me he could change my tires on the spot.

Guess who got my business? I left Canadian Tire in less than an hour with 4 new winter tires on my car.


Seeing as I’m writing about Canadian Tire, I want to mention that I’ve had several great experiences buying merchandise at this store. For example: During the summer, I bought camping equipment and a few things I needed from their kitchen department as well.

Thanks Canadian Tire for providing such great service. I’m seriously loving my new winter tires.

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As the temperatures start to drop, I immediately start to cook. I have this “thing” for cooking in bulk and freezing it. I love the convenience of coming home and simply having to grab something from the freezer and heating up a hearty meal in just a few minutes.

This is what’s been happening in my kitchen lately.


Homemade lasagna plus an abundance of Mac and Cheese!


Can you see a trend? As we all step into the fall, I  seem to be eating more comfort foods than in any other season. I’m not only worried about my waistline but I’m worried about my digestive health too.

I must admit, I really do eat more fruit in the summer and miss them during the cooler Canadian months.  Because let’s be honest, buying fruit frozen just isn’t the same and my tummy seems to feel the impact. Anyone else feel this way?

This fall, to combat the cooler weather eating blues, I’m trying my best to get back into my normal routine and get back in control (i.e. getting back to the gym) so I can start my days off on the right foot with a happy tummy

My new goals include:

Eating Smarter and Exercise • limit low-fibre foods i.e. cheese, processed foods, ice cream (sugar and fat!); drink lots of water and exercise at least 30 min a day.

Get Relief •  Sometimes changing your lifestyle habits aren’t enough, so I’m not afraid to seek help when I need it. i.e. Dulcolax® Laxative tablets for gentle, predictable overnight relief ; I might even bring this subject up to my doctor or pharmacist!

Right now, you can find a high-value offer from Dulcolax® available at major retailers across the country (English Canada only). It’s available in-store now until the end of October. When you buy Dulcolax® at your local pharmacy it’s easy to pick-up a $5.00 off rebate coupon and mail-in for redemption – it’s an offer you won’t want to miss! (Applies to Dulcolax® and Dulcolax® for Women Laxative tablets).


My main goal is to #takecontrol and #ownthethrone (don’t you just love that hashtag?) – according to the Canadian Digestive Health Foundation, poor digestive health can affect your mood, energy, concentration and ability to fight sickness. So join me, and make your tummy’s health a priority!!

Disclosure: I was compensated for this blog post however all opinions are my own.

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I went on a Ramen Crawl last winter and guess what? My fascination for Ramen continues.

The lastest ramen restaurant I checked out just opened on Dec 29th. It’s called Isshin Ramen and is located at 421 College St.

The menu consists of:  8 different types of ramen (including TWO vegetarian options), 4 appetizers, 3 rice bowls and 3 desserts.

ramen - menu

I asked the waitress to assist me in ordering and before I knew it I ordered the “Isshin “Spicy” Black Tan Tan Ramen”– Thick twisty noodles in a miso broth, topped with wok fried ground pork, spicy chives, bok choi, black sesame, pork belly, cha-shu and a home made chilli oil. Once again – I’m no expert but all 3 components really worked for me (the broth, the noodles and the toppings). It was DELICIOUS.

ramen - soup

They encourage you to use the mortar and pestle to grind the black sesames and add it halfway through to enhance the experience. I was impressed with this added touch!!

I also had the chance to try “Crunchy Chicken Karaago” – crispy crunchy flavourful bits of chicken, deep fried to perfection and served with a garlic kupe mayo. Ate all three pieces even though I’m not such a huge fan of chicken and I was FULL.

ramen - chicken

The meal ended off with a Fresh Mango Pudding which is made in house daily with fresh mangoes. It was light and refreshing not to mention a perfect way to end the meal.

ramen - mango

I read a review on BlogTo today that highly recommends the Isshin “Red Miso” Ramen. I have no doubt that I will be returning. Cant’ seem to get enough Ramen during the winter.

For More Information:

Isshin Ramen, 421 College St, Toronto, ON 416 367 4013

Twitter: @isshinramen


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I was on Twitter a few weeks ago and noticed that a new ramen restaurant was opening in Toronto. I was so excited seeing as I’m a  huge Ramen fan. I clicked the “follow button” and asked if they would  keep me in the loop when they were opening.

Shortly after, I received an email asking if I would like to attend their opening. I quickly said “YES…COUNT ME IN”.

They opened today for a media preview and I was one of the lucky people invited into their restaurant, which only has 36 seats!! Touhenboku Ramen is located at 261 Queen W. and in my opinion this is a great spot for a ramen restaurant.


Touhenboku Ramen features ramen soup that is made from chicken broth. It can be ordered be with your choice of lean pork, rich pork or chicken chasu. Plus you can choose between thick or thin noodles, which are made from their own blend of flour.

I tried the Garlicky Touhenboku Ramen and was surprised that the broth was so thick but it was indeed one huge bowl of flavorful ramen. I’m sure by the time winter is over I will have tried their other options, which are: Original, Spicy, and Light.


Sadly I didn’t have a chance to try their Chiffon Cake but it looks great, doesn’t it?

Thannks @ortdavid for the photo #iPhoneproblems

Thannks @ortdavid for the photo #iPhoneproblems

For more information:

Touhenboku Ramen: 261 Queen St. West, Toronto 416 596 8080

Twitter: @TouhenbokuRamen

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This Sample Sale only opens to the public twice a year and it’s well worth visiting. Seriously.


1. You get the chance to buy your clothes 6 months in advance. This means, when I go to the sample sale in November, I’m buying my Spring clothes and when Spring (finally) arrives….I’m set to go.

2. You save $$$. Lots of it. Sample Sale prices are  wholesale.

3. You will always look unique as there is only ONE of each item at the Sample Sale. I have only bumped into two people in 8 years who were wearing the same piece I had bought at the sample sale (sadly…they bought it retail at a very different price).

4. It’s held in a showroom where the staff are super friendly and knowledgeable. I love asking them for advice and they have never steered me wrong.


1. Sample Sales are best suited if you are a size 6, 8, or a 10.

2. A lot of people can’t get their head around the fact that they are buying Spring Clothes in the Winter or their Winter Clothes in the Spring. I have no problem with this. (clearly)

Here’s a small example of SOME of the clothes I purchased in November 2011. (click here for more photos of what I purchased)

sample sale - 2

Here’s a few of the WINTER merchandise I bought in April 2012. It’s hard to see the details of these blouses and sweaters but trust me….there’s detail. I bought another 6 pieces but I didn’t want to take too many selfies and I didn’t want to bore you.

sample sale - 1

This years sample sale is taking place on Monday Nov. 11th, Tuesday Nov. 12,  & Wednesday Nov 13. All the details you need to know can be found on the flyer below.


I will be there on Monday morning at 10 am sharp. Hope to see you there too.

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I’ve just returned from Ottawa and while I was visiting, I couldn’t stop taking photos of SNOW. It was truly beautiful and I found myself staring at trees, and bushes, and roofs!! Usually I’m taking photos of food, but on this trip I was also taking photos of SNOW. Funny, don’t you think?

See what I mean?



When I returned to Toronto I decided to make something that reminded me of all that beautiful snow. After searching thru the Silk website, I found a recipe called “The Orange Snowball”. How could I resist? It gave me the opportunity to buy Angostura bitters and fresh orange juice! (the Silk soya beverage was already in my fridge seeing as I’m lactose intolerant).
Recipe: Orange Snowball (from Silk Soy Beverages)
This is what you need:

  • 3 oz Silk Original soy, almond or coconutmilk
  • 1 oz freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 1 tsp agave (I used Redpath Organic Agave Nectar…which is  a new product, by the way)
  • 2 dashes Angostura bitters*
  • Candied orange peel for garnish (I used fresh orange zest)

*Adds a trivial amount of alcohol


  • 1.Place all ingredients except garnish in a cocktail shaker.
  • 2.Add 1 cup of ice and shake well.
  • 3.Strain into a chilled cocktail glass and garnish with candied orange peel.
  • For a spirited drink, add 1 oz orange liqueur such as Grand Marnier.

Final Product:


p.s I know that I will making more recipes with Silk, Redpath Agave Nectar  and Angostura Bitters (which has a totally cool history, by the way) – all three products are super diverse!! Please take a minute to click on their websites and you will see what I mean.


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It’s’s soup season. I’m not complaining as I love soup. There is nothing like having a bowl of soup on a cold night.  Seeing as I’ve been on a carb free diet, many of the soups I can’t enjoy anymore. Bye Bye Creamy Squash Soup, Minestrone and Potato Leek. But HELLO MUSHROOM SOUP!!

I usually head to T & T, HMart, or Galleria for my mushrooms. You don’t have to..but it will cost you way less (I’m budget conscious, did you know?) and there will be a huge selection of mushroom. I think it’s worth the effort.


3 onions, chopped finely

6 cloves of garlic, diced

A LOT OF MUSHROOMS…(button, shitake, oyster…go to town)…Wash and Chop

Water? Vegetable Stock? ..whatever you prefer. (6-cups)



1. Sautee onions in a large saucepan

Step 1

2. Add garlic

3. Add mushrooms

4. Add water or stock, and when it boils, reduce temperature and let it simmer

5. Throw in some salt and pepper.

VOILA..a beautiful bowl of tasty, healthy mushroom soup to warm you up on a cold nite.

notice the burnt croutons that I added? LOL

Happy Cooking!!


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Fact: It’s winter and all I want to do is eat comfort food. I have a freezer full of soups and I wanted to diversify and make something different. Of course, twitter inspired me when I saw a tweet from @cookincanuck about a crockpot stew! Bonus Points: it’s VEGETARIAN.

I made one stew and I was immediately in crockpot heaven – so I went back and made another crockpot stew from her Cookin’ Canuck website.

Believe it or not, I used dried chickpeas for both recipes which I have never done before. Generally I use canned chickpeas. But I wanted to reduce the sodium and find out if there was a difference. Indeed there WAS a difference…both in flavor and texture.

I should mention that I didnt exactly follow the recipe seeing as the original recipe called for canned chickpeas. I cooked the chickpeas first in the crockpot and then added the onion mixture. I leave it up to you if you want to use canned chickpeas or dried chickpeas.

Both stews were super easy to make and chock full of protein, fibre and other goodness. Not to mention a very very affordable dish.

Crockpot Gingered Chickpea with Spice Tomato Stew; (from the kitchen of Cookin’ Cancuk).


1 tablespoon olive oil

2 onions finely chopped

4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped

2 tablespoon minced fresh ginger (I used organic and again I really think it makes a difference)

2 tsp ground corriander

1 tsp corriander seeds

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp black pepper

2 tsp balsamic vinegar

2 cups canned or fresh chopped tomotoes (I used canned)

2 cans of chickpeas (rinsed and drained) or 2 cups of dried chickpeas (previously cooked)

2 cups fresh spinach leaves.


1. heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onions and cook, stirring until the onions begin to brown.

2. add garlic, ginger, ground coriander, coriander seeds, salt and pepper. Cook for 1 minute.

3. add balsamic vinegar and tomatoes. Bring the mixture to a boil.

4. spread the chickpeas in the bottom of the crockpot. Pour the tomato mixture over the chickpeas and mix well.

5. cover the crockpot and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours

6. Just before serving, stir in spinach.


RECIPE #2: Crockpot Chickpea Stew with Balsamic Onions (from the kitchen of Cookin’ Canuck)


2 medium onions, thinly sliced

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1 tsp dried oregano

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1/2 tsp salt

2 cups chopped canned tomatoes

1/3 cup chopped kalmata olives.

2 cans chickpeas (I used 2 cups dried chickpeas)

1/3 cups crumbled feta cheese

1/4 fresh parsley, chopped


1. heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until softened. Stir in brown sugar. Cover and cook unitll the onions are golden brown (about 10 minutes)

2. add 1/4 cup water and oregano, cover the pan again and cook unitll the onions are deep golden brown (about 15 minutes).

3. stir in balsamic vinegar, salt and an additional 1/4 cup water. Cover the pan and cook until liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat.

4. Stir in tomatoes and kalamata olives

5. Pour the chickpeas into the bottom of a crockpot. Pour the onion mixture over the chickpeas. Cook on low heat for 5-6 hours or 3-4 hours on high heat

6. Garnish before serving, with crumbled feta cheese and chopped fresh parsley.

Who else loves their crockpot?

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Tea Time..

I blogged about coffee this week, so I thought it would only be fair to talk about tea as well. Naturally I wouldn’t want to leave anyone out!!

This year, I received a dinner gift that I totally fell in love with. It’s a tea tumbler called “Liquid Solutions Tea-Zer”. I started to grate fresh ginger, placed it in the removable strainer, I added boiling water and bingo: beautiful fragrant ginger tea.

freshly grated ginger and my tea tumbler (that I love)

My uncle told me try chopped  lemongrass and I tried it but returned back to the fresh ginger.

I even experimented between normal ginger and organic ginger. The organic ginger won by a long shot.

Once in a while, I will stop at DAVIDsTea. I think they have done a great job with their store concept, their packaging, merchandising etc.

(can you tell I once owned a store?).

I am a sucker for tea thats called “read my lips”!!

The store is so fresh looking and the staff are extremely friendly and helpful. There is nothing not to like.

a great looking store..

Their winter line up of teas include: baked apple, organic electric lemon, organic cloud nine and choloclate chili chai.


Raise you hand if you are a tea drinker or even an occasional tea drinker like me!!

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