Saturday, August 20, 2016

Diner en Blanc 2016!

On Thursday night my friend Jeni and I attended Le Diner en Blanc! If you recall, I went last year with my friend Veronica. The event is held all over the world and the premise is that everyone dresses in head to toe white, brings a table, chairs, dishes, and a picnic (or you can prepurchase food) and you meet in various locations all over the city. Then from your meet up spot you proceed as a group by bus, transit, or foot to a top secret location. Then you set up and eat!

We definitely had some issued with our meetup location this year (the bus was super late, then got lost), but we arrived just in time to join the other 2500 people for dinner! Jeni was in charge of the food and we had baguette with brie and meats, an orzo salad, and delicious macarons. OMG so good. Then we wandered around! There was a giant balloon walls, a swing, a birdcage with a swing (which we hit up later once the line slowed down), free yummy desserts from a sponsor, sparklers, and a DJ and dance floor to top it off! There was also a string band earlier, but we missed it due to being late. Sigh.

Overall, we had a really lovely night! The forecast had called for rain, but it ended up being a very warm summer's night. Our umbrellas were just for fun.

Thank you Jeni for being my lovely date for the night!! Happy Birthday!

Friday, August 12, 2016

Life Lately

I haven't been blogging much lately. On the one hand that is because of summer and being busy and on the other hand I feel less and less inclined to put my whole life on the internet. This must be that "adult" attitude that everyone warned me about. Rude. However I am feeling bloggy today so let's chat about what has been going on lately!

1. I have a new nephew!

Ok, technically he is not my blood relative, but his mom and I have known each other since grade 1 and have been the best of friends since about grade 7! I was the maid of honour in her wedding 5 years ago. She is the bees knees and is now so busy with a 14 month old and a newborn! I don't know how they do it. But so much love in that family right now.

2. I love Pokemon Go

I know, I am so lame. But I am seriously having so much fun with this game. I haven't really gone out purely to hunt down rare pokemon, but I play it from the streetcar on my commute home and I often walk to places more now so I can play as I go. I currently have  77 different types!

3. Snapchat
I dont think I mentioned it anywhere before, but I joined snapchat. I don't post stories that often because it feels a bit like yelling into the void...but I love to watch stories of other people! I also love to play with the filters. Follow me at wafflingblog!

4. Vacation!!!
I am planning a vacation at the end of summer!! Cam and my Daddy-o and I are taking my Dad's RV out East for a week. We are heading to Nova Scotia and I am so excited!! Though I am a little nervous to drive the RV. It is huge. We shall see how that goes. You should probably follow me on Snapchat if you want to see the shenanigans. We are going to drive the Cabot Trail, though in a rental car because we don't think the RV will be much fun on tight cliffside turns and steep hills.

5. Running/ working out
I got a little lazy for a bit after my half marathon, but now I am back to running. My friend Steph is training for her 3rd marathon so I have started joining her for her long runs on the weekends. Not to mention I have continued to join RunTOBeer. Last weekend Steph, her bf Kevin, and I did over 17km in the middle of a scorching hot day. Note to self- that was a terrible terrible idea. But at least there was free beer afterwards.

I have also finally started going back to the gym and lifting weights. For about a year now I have had this irrational fear of the weight room. I think it just got super busy after my building invested in new equipment and I was uncomfortable in there. Anyway. I went back. No catastrophes happened. So now I am going to try and stick with it again!

I am also trying to clean up my diet thanks to 10lbs creeping up on me from half and full marathon training (the runger is real). So I am trying to eat a lot more protein and more veggies. The other day I had candy for dinner, so that is a work in progress ;)

6. Olympics
I looooove watching the olympics. I don't think my TV is used to being on so much. I especially love any sport that is over in under a minute because my heart can't handle that kind of stress.

The Canadian women have been kicking butt so far, winning all of our current medals! You go girls!!

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Veronica and Mohamed's Wedding!!

I just love weddings. I love loving the love that people I love have. ;). I met Veronica in 2010 when she got transferred to my office at the insurance company we worked for and literally within 3 months of meeting we had booked a trip to Cuba together. Sometimes you just click right away with a person, and that is me and my Vee! She is funny and driven and beautiful and I knew she would meet an awesome man one day, and she did! A few years back she took a girls trip to Las Vegas and met eyes with Mo across the dance floor...numbers were exchanged, a long distance friendship and then relationship blossomed from Vancouver (where he lived) to Toronto (where she lived). A lot of flights and falling in love led to him moving here, then proposing on her birthday last year...and now their wedding!!! It is the best love story. And Mo is a great guy too- he is so funny, passionate, and sweet.

Jeni's photo of the newlyweds!
I stole this off FB- isn't she the prettiest bride??

Mo also has a weird love affair with my homemade cupcakes, so Vee asked if I would make the cupcakes for their wedding and I said yes!! They actually had a make-your-own cupcake station for the late night buffet so while I had to make about 125 cupcakes (a mix of vanilla, chocolate, and gluten free) and 10 gallons of buttercream icing, I only had to actually decorate 24 of them for the tiered set up. Still- it was a big job and I'm not sure if I am ready to start my own cupcake company quite yet ;). Oh and I bought the cupcake wrappers from Oooh La La Paperie on Etsy, in case you were wondering. They were so cute! Some had their initials and some the date.

Anyway, the wedding took place on the patio overlooking the marina and was absolutely beautiful and the bride and groom both wrote their own vows that had me tearing up!! Their love is just so sweet and I am so happy they found each other! The food was on point too- I judge a wedding pretty hard on it's food (I'm not really a foodie...I just love to eat and this wedding had non-stop food being served so that's an A+ in my books). The music was pretty good too! Cam and I haven't actually attended a wedding together and since our clubbing days are long gone it was so much fun to dance the night away together!

We so pretty

They also set up a photo booth with props so our friend's Jeni and Brandon got in on that with us too. Jeni and I also met at work, along with our friend Lisa who was also there (but I don't have a picture of- sadface). Our table was like a work reunion!

Vee and Mo both love to travel (Vee and I have gone to Cuba, Los Cabos, Las Vegas, and Mexico city twice together!). So for their guestbook they had a map of the world and you had to sign on a place that meant something to you or where you would love to visit. So cute!!

It was a great night and I wish Vee and Mo all the best!!! <3

What is your favourite part of a wedding? Mine is a tie between the vows and the father daughter dance.

Friday, July 29, 2016

Beaches Jazz Run- Half Marathon!

Last weekend I completed the half marathon race in the annual Beaches Jazz Run. The Jazz Run has been around for awhile, marking the end of the Toronto Jazz Festival, but this was the first year that they made it an "official" race with medals, hats, chip timing, and free photography! It was actually a pretty decent deal for a half marathon- $55, so I signed up soon after my full marathon back in May as a way to keep up my fitness level.

I will say that I certainly did not train as hard for this half as I did for my first half last fall. In fact, the longest run I did was 16.8km, and it was slow with many stops. I also knew going into this that it was a summer race, and therefore wouldn't be ideal weather, and that I likely wouldn't PR, but I hoped maybe I could hit 2:00 for the finish. I had NO idea how tough it would end up being!!

I got up at 5:20am and was out the door at 6:10ish to catch the streetcar to the start of the race. It started over on the boardwalk in the beaches, which was a good 40 minutes by transit. It was already pretty warm at 7:00am when I got there so I knew I was in for a tough run. At 7:30 we were off! I quickly saw the 2:00 pacer pull ahead and knew I would never catch him. I decided just to stay in front of the 2:05 pacer, but it was hard. The sun was beating down on me and it was heating up fast (I think it was 22 degrees plus 80% humidity so closer to 30! And that was at the start of the race!).

5km in
Soon after the 5K mark I knew I wasn't doing too hot. I was already so tired! So I switched to a run 10 minutes, walk 1 schedule. I actually ran into a girl I knew from RunTOBeer around this part and she was hurting too, so we kind of leapfrogged with our running and walked and encouraged each other on.

Around 10km I think the 2:05 pacer paced me and I didn't have the strength to catch back up. If only I had just started with a slower pace I could have had the energy to go a bit faster! Also, I started to get a horrible headache, a questionable tummy, and was completely repulsed by my Gatorade. I recognized that I was starting to get dehydrated and I started stopping at the aid stations for actual water and forced down an energy gel for the salt- it all seemed to work for me because after another 5K I started to feel normal again- still tired...but not sick at least!

Thankfully it also became overcast and breezy after km 10, which was soooo nice!

Around km 17 (?) the 2:10 pacer passed me and I was furious! I have run a 1:55 and a 2:00 half before dammit!! I didn't want to finish slower than 2:10!! I had a surge of power and felt like Aragorn in Return of the King at this moment. I was like "A DAY MAY COME WHERE THE 2:10 PACER PASSES ME, BUT IT IS NOT THIS DAY!"

And off I went, like a beautiful gazelle, flying with grace and beauty.

Just kidding. I looked like this:

Anyway, I DID pull ahead and finished strong in 2:09:23! Far away from my personal best, but still the best run I think I could have pulled off on that particular day!! I met up with the RunTOBeer crew for a bit, but declined my beer as my stomach was still a little iffy. Plus it was like 9:30am. They actually all went off for a RunTOBeer run, but I went home for a nap!!

All in all, it was still a good race. I found it well organized and a lot of fun. Though I think there is something seriously wrong with my definition of fun. :). I think next I want to try racing a 5K, because I actually haven't run one before and I want to see if I can go sub 25 minutes! But I think I will take a break from actual races until the heat is gone!!

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Camping at Balsam Lake!

I had quite a busy weekend with a bridal shower and a half marathon, but first I feel we need to travel back in time to a week ago when I went camping with my girls!! I have been camping with my friend Lisa and Ginny (and a few others some years) annually since 2008...however we hadn't managed to go for the past couple years, which sucked. So one day this spring I picked a random July weekend and messaged the girls to see if they were free and we booked it! We all also ended up taking the Friday off work so we could get up there earlier! :)

Me, Lisa, and Ginny in 2008! Such youngin's we were...
On the Thursday I met up with Ginny, went grocery shopping and I stayed at her place for the night since she lived closer to the campground and no one wants to come downtown to get me during rush hour. Lisa showed up at 8:30am on Friday and we were off! We ended up staying at Balsam Lake. The same place we stayed in 2012. In fact, the exact same campsite!! We set up camp, made a beer, ice, and firewood run, and then got down to the business of relaxing.

I like to tell people we have a 20 person tent. It is just sort of a ridiculous huge thing we bought many a moon ago. We actually found a giant hole in it a couple of years ago so this year I bought a tent repair kit and we patched it up- hopefully she will have many more summers with us! Also, mine was the only air mattress to not deflate while we slept #winning.

Friday involved a lot of trips to the camp store to try and fix one of the air mattresses and to buy more wood because we kept burning all ours (weird how that happens). On one of those trips we bought a cake. It twas a good dinner that night!

Friday night it was FREEZING. I dont know how we managed to go from 40 degrees celsius a couple days prior to THIRTEEN, but it happened. We went to bed with all of our clothes on! I got up around 7am to go for a run and found Lisa sitting in her car with the heat on! Also, while she was sitting there someone maybe tried to steal our beer?? WHO DOES THAT? Anyway, Lisa scared them off.

And yes! I went for a run! I originally had an 8km run and a 19.5km run for Sat/Sun, but since I ended up getting lost on the trails on Saturday morning (lol), I called it even at 10km for the whole weekend. It was such a nice run though! I was pretty slow thanks to rocks, roots, and mud, but it was super enjoyable and I never saw another soul the entire time- just me an nature! I don't get to do much (ie any) trail running downtown. Here are some pictures!

I got back and Ginny was up so we started making some breakfast. We never bring a stove with us, preferring to cook everything over the fire with our cast iron pot and pans. It always turns out so much yummier that way! Though I think the other girls voted we get a little stove for next year (I think the wait for coffee is unacceptable at our age...)

After breakfast we headed to the beach! But it was still SO COLD. We actually lay on the beach in sweats! I even debated not blowing up my giant inflatable flamingo floatie, but thankfully by mid afternoon the sun came out and it ended up being a very enjoyable day and I let my flamingo flag fly! I loved that floatie man...for once I was the one wanting to go in the water and stay there. Usually you find me bathed in sunscreen on the beach (I love to lie in the sun). I wish I had gotten a shot of Gin and I sharing the thing back to back inside the ring. Good times.

Then it was back to the campsite for dinner! Lisa has these hot pocket makers so it is a tradition to eat most of our meals with them. I had a pizza one, a grilled cheese one, and a marshmallow/chocolate/strawberry one. It is a delightful, well-known fact that calories don't count when camping. MMM

Then it was back to bed for a thankfully slightly less cold night! PS- I wake up every night to go to the bathroom at 4am. This was really not fun on a cold night when the nearest washroom is an outhouse. Sigh. Sunday morning we woke up, I made french toast, and then we packed up our site and headed back to the beach for a few hours! It was much hotter and sunnier on Sunday and we had a fun time before heading home.

Overall it was a great mini-vacation with my girls, but I think 2 nights is not nearly long enough!! I hope we can get together for a longer trip next summer!

Also, in case you are interested, there are no Pokemons at Balsam Lake.

The only photo that was not of food/flamingo this weekend...

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Weekend Recap!

Hello! I am still plugging away at my half marathon training, but it really isn't that exciting so I can't find much to talk about. I did cut my Thursday run short- it was supposed to be a 13K tempo run (which means go fast), but it was SO hot out that after 4km I started feeling really ill so I called it a day and walked the 4km back home. It was a beautiful night for a long walk, at least!

The weekend got off to a better start. I convinced Cam that we should go out to see Finding Dory Friday night. He got a giftcard for the movies from one of his students and I had a bunch of Scene points, so we only had to pay for our popcorn and it was a great date night! We went to a 10:30pm show to avoid a theatre full of kids and the plan worked perfectly. It did pour rain on our walk over, but I showed Cam the wonders of Toronto's underground PATH system! It is about 2.5km from my place to the theatre and you can walk 90% of it underground. Love this city :) Oh, and we both enjoyed the movie. It was very cute.

Then on Saturday I did a speedy 8km in the morning and then it was off to Body Blitz Spa for the bachelorette party of my good friend Veronica!! I have known Vee for 6 years (?). We met at work when we shared a reception desk and she is the bees knees and I am so excited for her wedding in a few weeks!! We had SUCH a lovely time at the spa (I will 100% be back), and then we all walked over to Mill St BeerHall in the Distillery District for dinner, where service was slow, but beers, food, and company were all wonderful! And then after dinner we went to Bier Markt for dancing and shenanigans. It was bachelorette and bachelor party central there so quite a fun, enthusiastic crowd. It was a good time.

Then Sunday I was up early (what ever happened to sleeping on the weekends??) for another RunTOBeer! I had about 18km scheduled for Sunday so I ran 2km over my friends' Steph and Kevin's condo, picked them up, then we ran about 6-7km to the start of the 10K beer run in High Park. Unfortunately Steph and I got there a tad late so we did our own mini-loop around High Park and met up with the group again when the 5K started! Then we ran off to The Greater Good Bar! It was a hot and sunny day, but all the breaks made this a pretty easy run, especially since I only did 16.5km since we were late #shh. And we got free beers from Side Launch at the bar and we shared a gigantico pizza from North of Brooklyn Pizza (which is independently run from inside the bar).

Oh and PS- My friend Steph has come over to the dark side and started a blog!! You can find it here. Go read it now.

Then it was home for a nap and then off to my Mom's for dinner! I had to go to her place to borrow some camping gear and steal back my giant inflatable flamingo because I am off to the wilderness this weekend! And by wilderness I mean Provincial Park with a cooler of beer, some smores, and some good friends. SO EXCITED!! :D #ilovesummer

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