5 Smiles: April 16

The April showers are certainly persisting until the end. This means, we have to be more creative about finding our own sunshine – an excellent skill to have if you’re a Vancouverite! Whether, it is inside a tulip or around a table filled with foods and surrounded by friends, take your pick and enjoy! May flowers are just around the corner.

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Thank you for caring

A couple weeks ago, I walked by a man in the street. I actually see him quite often in my neighbourhood. He’s always smiling and always has something nice to say to passerby – sometimes it’s a joke, sometimes it’s a compliment. He is also usually asking for help – a bit of change if you can spare it – and for this reason, people mostly ignore him. Some days, I just smile and some days, I give him a few coins. That day, I had a toonie in my pocket and as I was giving it to him, someone made a comment that stayed with me “You care too much. People take advantage of that.”

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5 Smiles: April 9

Rain, cloud, rain, sun (!!), wind, rain…. and repeat. April is turning out to be a bit all over the place – kind of like me actually as it is a busy month. There’s been a couple time when I’ve gotten overwhelmed but I need to keep reminding myself to stop, take a breath, smile and go on… Even with all the craziness these days, I don’t want to miss out on those beautiful perfect little moments – whether it’s randomly finding the perfect card for a friend or that little ray of sunlight that came out on a grey day at just the right moment.

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5 Smiles: April 2

Looking for smiles around town, I sometimes spot little details people don’t notice. Has anyone else seen these little red monsters pop around Kitsilano? This mural is pretty obvious but look for little guys hanging off roofs or hidden in a corner. Kind of fun looking for them!

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5 Smiles: March 26

Welcome to Spring friends! I always feel that as soon as the days get a bit longer and the sun has deigned to come out even just a couple times, people are more willing to smile ( or maybe it’s just my very silly rain helmet?!) Whatever the reason, I’m loving the smiles back this week so keep them coming!

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5 Smiles: March 20

Sometimes the smiles I see are subtle and may only make me smile, a burgeoning tree or a fun set of brooches (I get it – it’s not for everyone) but sometimes I’m know for a fact everyone else is smiling too. When I went for a walk the other day, I found a bright yellow smiley face – now don’t tell me you’re not smiling right now!!

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Smiles: July 31

I read a quote this week that made me smile. “Enjoy the little things. For one day, you may look back and realize they were the big things.”

It reminded me why I write the 5 smile series. It really is all these little things that create a life full of happiness. An impromptu picnic with friends, a fresh bagel for a weekday morning brunch, a quiet sunset walk after a long day – all those things might seem rather mundane at first but if you stop and appreciate them, you’ll quickly realize that they are the moments in life to be thankful for.

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My Quick and Easy Summer Meal

Not sure about you but my motivation for cooking complex, intricate, new recipes goes way down in the summer. I just want to get out there and enjoy the sunshine! So, I end up relying on very easy but still delicious meals to minimize kitchen time and maximize beach time. Cue in the salads, BBQ’s and quick pasta dishes!

On my last SIDEWALK Supper Project, I made my ultimate go-to summer menu, grilled veggies and chicken panini with a goat cheese and strawberry salad. I’ve had a few inquiries about it so I decided to share my recipes.

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