Don’t let the door hit you on your way out, 2013!

Well, I guess that’s it. Isn’t it? This year is finally behind us. I’ve never looked forward for a year to end so much as I have this year. This year was the worst year out of all the years of life. And yet a lot of wonderful things happened1; I guess it just goes to show that there is always good that will come out of a bad situation. I just wish there had been more good this year than bad.

The things I wish to never forget about 2013:

1. That time I was in the pilot episode of a reality TV show called, Come Date With Me on the W Network.

Still from Come Date With Me Canada

2. Being auctioned off at Love a Heart2. Photo credit: Chris Luckhardt.

Facebook Events | Love a Heart

3. Stage Managing for Canadian Music Week and meeting #LeBeau, Garret3.

Canadian Music Week Stage Manager

4. Stage Managing for North By North East and meeting Sloan. Sorry no pictures.
5. Getting a brand new family member, Drogo.

Drogo Sy!

6. Having a custom vine made just for me by Cyrstal Light Canada.

Facebook | Crystal Light Canada | Weird & Wonderful You

7. Assistant Stage Managing for Pride and getting to meet and work with En Vogue.

En Vogue at Pride 2013

8. Going to Cunt Cottage and having an amazing weekend away from the city.

http://fragileheart.com/wp-content/uploads/cunt-cottage.jpg

9. Working for TIFF and getting to see some stars up-close-and-personal-like. No pictures, because I want to be able to work there again in 2014.
10. Going on a boat cruise with Shannon & the gang courtesy of Crazy Uncle. No pictures because I have no idea what I did with the pictures from that cruise. Oops.
11. Volunteering for TEDxToronto4.

TEDxToronto 2013

12. Being in a feature film that won an award at TOIndieFF2013, was part of the official selection at DIFF2013 and reviewed here.

Unhappy Happy Still
13. Working on the 48 hour film project where our team won Best Ensemble Cast.

Hashtag Bougie Productions

13. Meeting and falling in love with #LeBeau’s two daughters5. No pictures, of course. They’re too wittle.
14. Celebrating Christmas with our families and getting 2nd Christmas with the girls. Also no pictures, because I’m a spoil sport like that.
15. Being able to celeberate my birthday & the holidays with some really awesome friends. Again; no pictures, because we didn’t take a group photo and there are too many great ones to choose from.
16. Getting to keep in touch with my wifey, Christine Estima even though she’s a gazillion miles away.

Skyping with the Wifey

Last but not least…
17. Getting to do this fun photoshoot for Ford Canada with the ever-sexy, Ford Fiesta, Marie & Brock.

Date Night with the Ford Fiesta

Shopping fun with Marie & the Ford Fiesta

I’m not at all interested in re-living the past that was this horrible year, so I won’t go into any details about it. I would rather look forward with hope and excitement for what 2014 might have to bring. I can only hope that it’ll be a good year because if my own personal history has taught me anything 2015 is set to be another doozy. You see, there’s something about years that end in zeros and fives – they don’t like me very much. I had a terrible 1995, I can’t say 2000 was any better, 2005 was horrible, 2010 was another nightmare year… mind you, they were all bad for heartbreak but not much else.

Anyway, that’s a whole 365 days away. For now, here’s hoping that in 2014, I…:

  • …no longer have to worry about how I’m going to pay for groceries or laundry.
  • …can actually afford to meet up with friends at least once a week.
  • …find the energy to get off my ass and start exercising again.
  • …will visit my parents and cook for them more often.
  • …will stop worrying about things that I really have no control over.
  • …can reconnect with some old friends who I miss but have drifted away from, for no good reason. And stay connected.
  • …get to go camping twice – once with the family, and once with the man and/or friends.
  • …get to visit somewhere I have never been.
  • …write more for this blog.
  • …learn how to make a Filipino dish I have never made before, but love to eat.

And that’s about it. I had a longer list but I’ve cut it down some in an attempt to be a little more realistic with my resolutions. I didn’t make any resolutions for 2013 because at this age, I’m kind of over them. Since 2013 was such a bad year though, I needed some things to look forward to. And these are some of the more important things I’m looking forward to for this New Year.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

What are you looking forward to in 2014?

Footnotes:
  1. I met Garret this year after all[]
  2. an annual favourite[]
  3. Nope. Not his real name[]
  4. another annual favourite[]
  5. and finally having children in my life. wee![]

No really, Come Date With Me!

On February 20th, a new show is going to premiere on the W Network. I’m beyond excited. It’s hard for me to write about it because the 300 cartwheels I’ve done, don’t feel like enough. The show is called, Come Date With Me and instead of try to write up a description for it, I’m going to get their words tell you:

Come Date With Me combines the cooking, criticizing and competition of Come Dine With Me Canada and adds a new twist—romance. Four eligible bachelors compete to win the heart of one woman – or vice versa—as they each take her out on fun, adventurous dates then cook for her in their own homes. The catch? These kitchen Casanovas have to cook for their fellow male suitors as well! Our bachelorette rates each date and dinner and the bachelor who captures her heart will share $1000 on the ultimate dream date.

In case you haven’t seen the teaser video yet, you can check it out by clicking on the image below.

Click here to watch the teaser video, featuring me!

It was a super fun week full of  a lot of a giggling girl1, four manly men, delicious food, some2 alcohol and more that… I may or may not remember at this time.

By now, a lot of you have already seen my episode and you already know how it ends. For those of you who haven’t seen it yet, I hope you tune in. It’ll make me smile. You want me to smile, right? My episode first aired on February 9th at 1pm and has played again a few times since3, and it’s airing again TONIGHT at 8pm.

And if you have seen me in the show already, who do *you* think I should have picked?

Footnotes:
  1. Not me. Okay, Maybe me.[]
  2. okay, maybe a lot of[]
  3. There was a viewing party on Feb 12th![]

Happy Thanksgiving Canada!

I was a bit inspired today after I finished uploading 5 new headers that will rotate on a weekly basis so I made the banner above to greet you all with 🙂

In true thanksgiving spirit, I’d like to answer the question, What are you thankful for?, in this post. These are in order, but most can be interchangeable1:

1. Love. I have a lot of love in my life and I’m grateful for it. I am able to love so many people and to have them love me back – even across the seas. Its a treasure and I hope I never take it for granted.

2. Shopping. I’ve been shopping quite a bit lately because I’ve finally been able to write out my Christmas shopping list. I have a total of 37 people to shop for; 20 of which I have to make sure to post between Oct 20-Oct 27 so it gets there before Christmas. And I’m grateful for being able to shop for other people, because I love giving presents.

3. Baking. I’ve been doing a lot of baking recently, a lot of cooking as well but mostly baking and it just makes me so happy. I love working in the kitchen!

4. You guys! I can’t even explain how grateful I am for all of you – you inspire me to make my site better, which in turn inspires me to get more organised. Thanks to all my blogging friends and I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving2.

What are you thankful for?

Footnotes:
  1. except for the first one[]
  2. I know the US celebrates it next month, but I can still wish you for today can’t I? And for those who aren’t from North America, Happy Monday to you![]

My garlic mashed potatoes

No, I’m not turning this blog into a cooking blog but I do want to share this recipe because my Mum thinks I make amazing mashed potatoes. Though I’m not sure that by giving the recipe out, it will guarantee that you’ll make them as good as I do (hehe I swear I’m not being cocky!). I think that the most important ingredient in any recipe is a person’s own character, and that it’s always evident in a person’s cooking. Anyway, shall we just get on with it?

Servings: 4
Utensils: Wooden spoon, sharp knife, cutting board, large pot with lid, colander (maybe).

Ingredients:

  • 3 large potatoes (or 4 medium, or 5 small potatoes)
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon of butter (you can use unsalted butter if you like)
  • 3/4 cup of milk (approximate)
  • 1 teaspoon of pepper

You’ll notice that I don’t add salt to this recipe, that’s because my Dad has high blood pressure so we tend not to cook with salt in the house and just add it on as we’re eating. Also, I have to mention (because you’ll notice it in the photos) that I have used 2 small red potatoes, 1 medium yukon gold potato and 1 fairly large baking potato. I like to do this because it gives the mashed potatoes a more complex flavour and texture. Anyway… on with the instructions:

  1. Fill a large pot 1/3 full of water.
  2. Wash your potatoes thoroughly (use a brush if necessary).
  3. Do no peel your potatoes, the skin is healthy for you anyway.
  4. Cut away any deformaties and cut potatoes into chunks (it doesn’t matter what size, just as long as they are all the same size – this will ensure that your potatoes cook evenly. Just remember that the smaller you cut them, the faster they will cook but they will also have a higher chance of over cooking). If you really need a measurement, I like to cut them into 3-3.5 inch cubes.
  5. Place cut potatoes into pot of water.
  6. Peel and smash1 your garlic cloves.
  7. Place peeled garlic cloves into pot of water.
  8. Turn to high heat (alternatively, you can turn the heat on as soon as you fill the pot with water to save time. I had to turn it on at this stage because there isn’t enough room to cut beside the stove).
  9. Once the water has started to boil, turn the heat down to just below medium and allow the potatoes to simmer for approximately 20 minutes.
  10. Test the potatoes’ tenderness with a wooden spoon. If you can cut one, but there is still a little bit of toughness to the potato then they are ready. Be sure that there is only a little resistance to your spoon, if they’re too hard and you’ve already drained the water – you can still save them but they will be a little more bland than they should be.
  11. Turn the heat down to low.
  12. Drain the water using a colander. If you’re brave, use the lid by leaving a small gap between the lid and the pot2
  13. Using a masher, mash the potatoes until there are no big chunks left3.
  14. Add the butter and the 1/2 of the 3/4 cup of milk, and stir with the wooden spoon.
  15. If the mashed potatoes are too dry, add the rest of the milk and stir4.
  16. Season with pepper and stir.
  17. Transfer to serving bowl, pair with steak your way or chicken your way, some veggies and enjoy!

Please do try this recipe and let me know how it turns out for you. And of course, what kind of a person would I be if I didn’t give you pictures to look at so you know what I’m talking about? Although, you’ll have to forgive me but after I put the butter in… I forgot to keep taking pictures as the steaks were ready and it was time to eat! I didn’t even get a photo of the final product. Maybe one day… ;P

Colander photo courtesy of Kitchen Classics

((I’ve actually had this post on the backburner for a long time, as I really didn’t want to start posting recipes on the blog but I’ve since revisted and thought that I did a decent job of taking the pictures and writing up the post that I shouldn’t just leave it in drafts forever.))

Footnotes:
  1. is there a technical term for this? I don’t know…[]
  2. sorry there’s no picture for this but I needed both hands![]
  3. unless you want them really lumpy[]
  4. repeat as necessary with more milk[]