The last couple days of rain gave me a good wake up call! Don’t get me wrong I love the rain. There’s nothing better than curling up on the sofa with a good book listening to the drops tap on the windows or even going for walks with Moe cuddled up under our big umbrella. But, I also happen to love summer and all the fun things I get to do when the sun is shining – reading a book at the beach, going for long bike rides, eating ice cream (only to cool off of course!) . This is Vancouver friends and the last couple rainy days made me think, I really need to make the most of this summer because the beautiful sunshine will not last. Too many of them have passed me by before but this Summer, I’m going to enjoy the ride!
The last month of so was a bit of a downward spiral. I let one little aspect of my life completely take over. I started focusing on the negative and I just could not see the little things that made me happy anymore. I did not want to smile anymore. I did not want to blog. I did not want to bike or bake or do any of the things I loved. I just was not feeling it. I was completely drained!
Moe and I love to explore new spots in the city. Of course, we have our go-to places and neighbourhood favourites but it’s always fun to try out something new. Sometimes, we’ll go for a walk and just discover a cute little cafe and other times, we’ll go somewhere specifically to try something out. After a bit of a stressful week, there was nothing I looked forward to more than trying a new ice cream place Moe had been talking about. Lik is just as much about eating ice cream than about watching them make it with liquid nitrogen. It was fun to go with a few friends before a walk on the sea wall.
I often wonder what makes people happy. I’m 100% sure it’s not money but then what is it? Success, accomplishments, experience, love, relationships, mindfulness? I actually had a good discussion about that with a friend this weekend and I’ve continued thinking about it over the last few days. I think what it comes down to for me is mindfulness and relationships. I find that when I am surrounded by the ones I love and make a mindful choice to enjoy each moment I share with them, that’s when I am the happiest.
Looking back at my smiles this week, I noticed that the little surprises are what make me smile – an unexpected invitation to dinner at a friend’s house, a peek-a-boo view of the mountains while biking. Living in the present has allowed me to be more aware of my surroundings and that means I’ve noticed more and more of those unexpected, yet completely lovely little moments. I appreciate them to their fullest and that makes me smile even brighter.
I absolutely love feeding people and strongly believe a kitchen table should always be full of hungry friends ready to enjoy the delicious food you’ve made for them. After all, food always tastes better in good company! Joining the SIDEWALK Supper Project made perfect sense to me. I’m not sure why I did not think of it before. I’ve instantly gained new friends to cook for!
Growing up, I’ve always loved my family traditions. From our holidays in the South of France every fall to my dad taking on the challenge of cooking our Christmas dinners every year, I cherish those memories dearly. In the last few years, Moe and I have started creating our own traditions, most of them revolving around friends and food. We now have an annual camping trip, a Pi Day celebration, wine and cheese party and at the beginning of summer before everyone gets too busy, we get together for a favourite tradition: our pickling party. It might be a bit of an untraditional tradition but it’s certainly fun and delicious!
Have you ever been asked the question “If you had to choose one food to eat for the rest of your life, what would it be?” My answer more often than not is pasta (although sometimes I lean towards Ramen which is also pasta I guess – would that count?). Pasta is just my favourite go-to food. You can dress it up or down in so many ways. Have it cold as a nice summer salad or hot as in spaghetti and meatballs. How can you go wrong?
My other favourite food group being cheese, it might not be a surprise that one of my top pasta dish is spaghetti and bocconcini-stuffed meatballs. I one up the ante on this one and accompany it with my very own homemade roasted garlic and herbs pasta sauce.
It’s very rare that I ever have weekends with nothing planned. Not that it’s a bad thing but they usually fill up with friends’ birthday parties, dinners, and all sorts of fun events (sometimes chores too unfortunately!). But for the last couple weekends, it seems that the stars and moons lined up just right and I got to enjoy some free time. Of course, I still filled up my time but with things that I don’t always get to do like spending some time in the book store (in the cooking book aisle obviously!) or taking a nice long walk in my neighbourhood.
It’s hard to care about anything these days. As soon as you start caring, the pile of issues that come along with any given cause is so daunting that we don’t even know where to start taking action. How can one little person make a true difference?
In come, 3 very cool people that care and who did take action: Andrea, Eddy and Thomas. These guys are the true definition of friendship and by just being together and themselves, they are already making the world a better place. They started the SIDEWALK Supper Project.