Weddings Shows, Renos, and Pema Chodron

So, I attended my first wedding show. I do not like crowds or acrylic lace, so I opted to attend the spendy Wedluxe show at the Carlu rather than the massive convention centre wedding show that was going on the same weekend.

Look at the fancy lemon floral display. You do not get that at the convention centre...

A lot of pushy bridezillas with massive Chanel bags were in attendance but my daughter/maid of honour and I must have been among the bridezilliest as we got our experience passport fully stamped: hair and makeup, food stations, bouquets, lattes, cupcakes, and swag.

I talked to the good people at Valencienne, because fabric. I want a dress with really nice heirloom lace and there are only a few salons in Toronto that specialize in that.

I do not want to deny myself the whole 'say yes to the dress' experience, so on the way home, we hit a salon to try on the type of dresses you find in bridal magazines.

I cannot believe what a feat of engineering there is to your run-of-the-mill wedding dress.  The sample sizes are huge so there is a lot of fabric involved in the trying on. And a lot of spandex buckle things that suck you in and jack you up. Imagine a dress designed by Buckminster Fuller and you'll get the idea. I'm not sure I require that much architecture in a dress but I also don't want to go the slip dress route a la Jenny Packham. Been there, done that. This ain't my first rodeo, after all.

Right now, I'm loving a heavy lace sheath dress along the lines of this Oscar de la Renta beauty:

Sadly, the dress is no longer made. There are some that are close-but-no-cigar, so I may have to look into having something made. I basically need a bolt of antique lace and staple gun to get the look I want. I want to pair it with a jacket. I'm thinking a classic Saint Laurent tuxedo sort of deal.

The other look that appeals is something glitzy since I'm getting married on New Year's Eve. I'm thinking something along these lines (Oscar had some really good years...)

Trying on dresses is fun so I plan to do that for a month or two and then I have to decide if I'm getting something made.

In addition to Pinteresting my little heart out, I'm enjoying binge watching Rehab Addict. We are possibly going to buy an income property at some point (although timing the blinking markets is impossible) and I'd like to get something historic in a gentrifying area to fix up. I have tons of respect for Rehab Addict's Nicole Curtis's design philosophies as I hate it when people knock down old homes and put up something new and tacky. We have an abundance of that in this town. I'm kind of loving Hamilton right now for old house potential. We will continue to live in Oakville as this is where our lives are, but I'd not mind commuting to The Hammer to keep an eye on a rental property.

Of course, I have to get my book written first... Slowly, slowly catchee monkey, as they say. The book is a little bit about forgiveness so I've been speed reading Pema Chödrön. I listen to her in the car on a loop as well, since I think her philosophies are important. I'm not Buddhist, so I don't agree with everything, but I find her outlook appealing. I wish we looked upon suffering as part of life rather than as something that people have brought upon themselves because of some character flaw. There is so much suffering around the mere fact that you are suffering, which seems very messed up. Of course simple acceptance of the hard things in life is difficult too.

I hope you are having a productive January. I'm very pleased that there is now snow. I have yet to ski this year as it poured with rain last weekend, but I'm skiing this weekend if it means driving to Banff.

I hope you have an excellent week, kittens,

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year, gorgeous creatures!

We rung in the new year with friends. Inspired by Have Some Decorum, I made a fondue with Comte, Gruyere, and Emmental cheeses from Farmhouse Artisan Cheese in Oakville (we now have a cheese shop and a book shop so I can officially stay in town!) and a new Emile Henry Pot from To Set A Table.

Love shopping local. I did all of my boxing day shopping on Lakeshore, Oakville's main street. Anthropologie housewares never disappoint. I picked up some cute things for the wedding and a set of jewelled cat ears that I think are meant for children.

Ready for a new year? I know I am. Happy to shake off 2015 which was mainly good with a smattering of dark clouds.

This year I get to plan our wedding, work on my book, buy a house (and maybe reno), and write about things like happiness over at HuffPo. Not a bad year ahead...

I'm not a big fan of New Year's resolutions but have resolved to drink more water. I mainline tea and lattes but am so cold in the winter that I cannot bear water. But I've vowed to drink a glass every 90 minutes during the day (I add Mint Chlorophyll sometimes to make it tastier.) I've set up an app to keep me on the straight and narrow. Glug glug.

I'm also taking vitamins regularly. Every doctor I see tells me to take Omega 3s so take them I will. I also need iron so I've set up one of those pill boxes that make me look like an octogenarian at the breakfast table.

I'm focusing on happiness this year and thought this Happiness Planner tool might help.

I also will try to keep up a 10 minute meditation practice but won't be hard on myself if it slips.

I'll let you know how I fare…

My daughter has been baking up a storm. She's into Rosanna Pansino and made up the unicorn poop cookies from her latest cookbook. They are made with cream cheese dough and are delicious.

I've been reading for pleasure this week. Loving Sloane Crosley's The Clasp. If you like The Goldfinch, you'll enjoy it a lot.

I'm also quite caught up on movies. People have been raving about Brooklyn and it was good, but my favourite of all the movies I've seen was The Big Short. I'd loved the book and worried how it might translate on the screen: if anything, the movie might be better. It's a must see, particularly for ex-bankers like me.

The girl child is at a play date and the boy child is playing in the snow (finally we have some, although skiing won't be great for another few days) so I'm going to spend some time relaxing today.

I hope you have a wonderful New Year's Day and a 2016 filled with love and laughter.

Christmas Traditions: The Nutcracker Ballet

Every year, I take my daughter to see the Nutcracker. (I took my youngest son once, but he loudly complained that there was too much dancing...