I have been very lazy about posting to this blog in the past year. Tatata. That’s what my Trinidadian workmate Pearl says whenever she disapproves of something.. tatata.
It’s been just about 11 months since I’ve written anything here, so I will try to do a quick-ish (that’s a lie) recap of the highlights and lows of the past year:
- James and I went on a lovely trip to Montreal for a week or two, and stayed in this boutique hotel, which included a little kitchenette area so that we could cook some of our own meals and eat breakfast at “home” every morning before we went out on our adventures. While there we checked out the Chihuly exhibit at the Musée des beaux-arts, ate some AMAZING Indian food, had some of the best coffee I’ve ever tasted and visited the new Planetarium. We absolutely love the vibe Montreal has, and make a point to visit there every year. A plus is that I know the city quite well, as I visited my cousin and his wife there during many summers, and also took a few school trips there when I was younger. No getting lost!
- My Dad’s 65th Birthday was last year! Our tradition is that I cook him a dinner of whatever he wants, dessert included! I think we also took him out for dinner, and knowing how much he loves his single malt whiskey (me too!) I bought him a 21 year old archive scotch that he still talks about today and even has a bit left of haha
- Took out my Mom for her Birthday, and as always she wanted to go to her favourite Greek restaurant lol. I’ve forgotten what I gave her for a present, but it was probably a few gift certificates.. as she likes shopping for herself!😉 Last year was her big B-Day celebration, but the next milestone is coming soon!
November 2013 to January 2014
- Was in two car accidents (one with my Mom and one with James). Nobody was hurt, and although the damage to the vehicles was great (well James’), there was no rise in insurance. Phew!
- The Toronto ice storm of 2013! I will never forget that.
- Went to the One of a Kind Christmas Craft show with James and his Mom. James and I had to sneak off to buy his Mom these earrings she liked :) She bought a ton of soap and other goodies, and we found some great Xmas presents!
- James and I helped out with this charity called Santa Comes to Bay Street, where a family (or however many you’d like to help) is chosen at random, and you go out and purchase some Christmas presents of their choosing. They are then wrapped up nicely by volunteers and given to the families. This is such a fantastic charity that really warms our hearts. The recipients are mostly comprised of women’s shelters from the downtown Toronto and GTA areas. These are transitional housing shelters, where women and their children can find refuge from abusive households, and find some help getting back on their feet. Shelters like Juliette’s Place and Red Door among the many others are so important to have available, and should not be pushed aside to build more condos. :| We are very passionate about this as you can tell!
- This was the month my Jamesy proposed to me!! We went to eat at one of our favourite Japanese restaurants, which is also where we went on our first date 12+ years ago! I knew it was coming, because he kept asking about ring sizes and what styles I liked, but did not know when he would pop the question. It was a very special day that I will always remember!! :))
March to April 2014
- We started planning our engagement party, with the date set as August 02. Exactly one year before our wedding! Yes the party took 5 MONTHS to plan hahahaha
- Booked our wedding day venue with Auberge du Pommier. When we eat there, it is like an out of body experience. Ohhh yeahh, sorry I’m drooling a bit.
- My Birthday (I turned 73) and my cousin’s wedding at Archeo in the Distillery District! Got to catch up with a bunch of relatives I hardly ever see. It was a lovely day❤
- Some bad news, James’ grandfather (DziaDzia) passed away. He had quite a fruitful life, was such a hard worker, kind soul and loving Grandpa. He will always be remembered fondly.
- One of James’ closest friends moved out of the city, and relocated to NYC. His wife has lived there for about half a year, as she received an amazing job opportunity that she couldn’t turn down! He will come back to visit every now and then, but will be greatly missed. Such a great guy!
- We found many new places to hike (and be bitten by mosquitoes) outside of the city. Normally we stick to parks and gardens in and around Toronto, but during the summer months we like to venture out and try out some new areas. Our favourites are some of the conservation areas along the Bruce Trail. We just have to remember to bring OFF mosquito spray!
- Discovery of Nandos Flame-Grilled Chicken Restaurants. This is probably the most important part of 2013/2014. Joking joking ;) But boy are we PASSIONATE about Nando’s chicken. I think they put something in it that makes you addicted to the juicy, succulent tangy spiciness mmmm mmm
- I began studying for the Canadian Securities Course. Not to take the exam, but to have a better grasp of micro and macro economics, fixed income investing, stocks, composition of bond market and so on! As most or all of you know, James’ job is in finance, so I have already learned quite a lot from him over the years! We are very much on the same page financially (big savers!), but as we grow older and invest further I’d really feel more comfortable having the same amount or close to the same amount of knowledge of investing as he does. He helps me study quite a bit and I feel like I’ll be able to start reading level 1 CFA course soon!
- Engagement party planning getting more hectic as we come closer to the day. Lots of crafts, cooking, planning and general freaking out. People tell me that I should go into party planning or wedding planning, but do you know how much Xanax I’d need for that? lol
- One of the best days of the year so far! James and I helped out my Dad with this Charity sale where all proceeds went to Syrian Refugees. We set up outside of a small church on Bloor Street downtown, with the help of many of my Dad’s co-workers from his ESL school. We sold quite a lot of items, worked hard and it was so rewarding! The MP Carolyn Bennett stopped by and took a picture of my Dad and his co-workers and posted it on her twitter I screen-capped it as soon as I got home.
- We had our engagement party and I think it turned out to be a success! Everyone who was invited came, and the families seemed to be having a good time. It’s only been a week and a half since the party, but I still feel exhausted even thinking about it haha
- That’s all! I think I’ve remembered all of the most important parts of the past year in this post.. you never know, I am getting older :p Now we’ve just got to get started on this wedding planning….