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Food, Inspiration, Lifestyle, Motivation, Photography

You survived!

September 3, 2015

Birthdays have ALWAYS been something I look forward to, year after year. Whether it’s my own or someone else’s- there’s a familiar excitement that surges through my veins. It’s similar to that ‘Christmas’ feeling you get when the trees are lit and the stockings are hung and there’s unhealthy amounts of over-sweetened sorrel in your fridge.

I know that for many, it’s ‘just another day’. For me though, I believe in making the most of every single day you’re given.. and birthdays just seem like a scheduled time to have a little extra fun. Why not take advantage of a designated day to make someone feel special, or to treat yourself?

Growing up, my mom made all my birthdays special. It was never about the presents or the cake, in fact I’m not a fan of cake at all, nor do I like ice-cream… but it was always about feeling like you were important. It was a day set aside to allow yourself to feel like anything was possible. To this day, there’s still a bit of birthday ‘magic’ that I always look forward to.

Birthdays remind me of where I’ve been and how much yet there is to accomplish. They’re a bit of a reality slap, and I suppose for the older folk, that’s why they’re probably a bit more daunting. It’s probably a chilling reality for some to not have accomplished what they wanted to by a certain age… like getting married or having their dream job by a certain time.

BUT. HOLD IT RIGHT THERE.

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Food, Lifestyle, Photography, Travel

Falling in love with…

August 26, 2015

Food, glorious food! Is there really anything better?

My earliest impressions of food were formed during my childhood. I’ve always had the most positive associations with eating since I came from a family that loved to cook, and equally loved to eat.

Mealtimes were always a family affair; a time to share and laugh. We had many home cooked meals, but moreso we tended to eat out. I vividly remember trying foods from different countries and cultures, and absolutely falling in love with many dishes that are still my favourites today.

Sunday afternoons in the 90’s for example, were spent eating at Joe’s Pizza in St. James, most of the time, our whole family occupying the entire restaurant! The dining and entertainment scene wasn’t as vibrant as it is today, but the ambiance created in that little nook by the company kept transformed the atmosphere.

I loved it. I loved sitting with my family, hearing the constant chatter of buzzing conversation. The smell and taste of piping hot cheesy pizzas, strombolis, lasagnes and bread sticks. I loved the feeling of security that came from being with a huge family. The honest simplicity was perfect.

Fast forward, nearly 20 years later… things have changed, as they tend to. Not that change hasn’t presented it’s own beauty, but the time for these family gatherings and the unadulterated attention given to sharing a meal together just isn’t available anymore.

However, one thing has remained constant. My love of food. I still love experiencing new flavors. I still love eating and the nostalgia the smell, taste or even sound in some cases can bring.  Food, and dining, often take me back to that place when life seemed perfect. Perhaps it’s an emotional connection. There’s something familiar in certain simple flavours that deliver an inexplicable feeling of contentment by association.

I suppose that’s why food will never get old for me. Eating has always been, and will always be more of an experience for me than it is an element of basic survival. Anyways, I thought I’d begin photo-journalizing some of my favourite dining experiences in light of this love, starting with a dinner centered around one of  my favourite ingredients of all – cheese.

What are some of your earliest food memories? What dishes did you love growing up? Comment below!

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Gorgonzola crusted steak medallions, glazed with a balsamic reduction, paired with a side of classic parmesan and cauliflower risotto.

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Balsamic glazed steak medallions, crusted in sharp cheddar, paired with a side of creamy mashed potatoes and a seasoned steamed vegetable medley.

*Featured image: Creamy garlic, spinach and artichoke dip, loaded with freshly shaved parmesan and baked to perfection. Served with home made Tuscan bread spears. 

 

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