Tag Archives: marriage

Our Trip to Mexico, and the Beautiful Wedding There

Hello sweet friends!  It’s so good to see you again, and to be back here in my little corner of the interwebz.  I ended up taking a little break from posting while we were moving (more to come on that soon), and also we were in Mexico for a week!

It was such a wonderful trip, spending time with great friends in perfect weather, and being able to attend the wedding of two of our dearest friends, Alex and Sarah!  We mainly had a lot of fun in the sun, time by the beach and pool, enjoyed delicious spreads of amazing food, and got some pretty fantastic tans.  We stayed at the Riu Palace Riviera Maya, which was beyond all expectations, and which both Nick and I would definitely recommend.  Below I’ve added a few pictures to give you a little sneak peek of what we were up to.

This was the beautiful beach – doesn’t that just look like it’s beckoning you?

Next, a few shots of the resort itself, which was stunning and palatial.

This was a part of our big group, all ready and excited for the wedding!

And of course… the gorgeous and very romantic wedding, which brought many happy tears to many eyes that afternoon!  Congratulations again, Alex and Sarah!

Nick and I took a quick selfie on the beach while getting ready for group photos…

And here we are with the newlyweds!  

This was a beautiful restaurant that had breakfast, lunch, and steakhouse dinner, and was right on the beach – we loved having lunch here overlooking the water 🙂 

And last but not least, the stunningly beautiful lobby – believe me, this made quite the statement as we walked in!

Oh, just looking at those photos makes me miss it already!  Though it is nice to get back to a routine.  I’ve got more posts coming your way soon, since we’ve been very busy over here in the little pink castle.


Easy Date Night – Indoor Picnic

Is there anything sweeter than love and romance? Well, chocolate, I know.  But really, nothing compares to a romantic evening spent with the love of your life.  Getting dolled up, going out for a delicious candlelit dinner, lingering over cocktails while enjoying each other’s presence, or an evening of dancing…. ahhh, such sweet, loving bliss – at least until the bill arrives.

I know I’m not the only one to experience this, seeing the plethora of articles devoted to solving this problem – “Easy Cheap Dates”, “25 Free Summer Date Nights in Your City”, and so on.  What we have done a few times is reliable, romantic, and free!  I don’t know if this idea simmered in my subconscious while reading the aforementioned articles, or came to me one day when I was sick of eating dinner on the coffee table, since the itty bitty castle on the 26th floor didn’t have room for a proper dining table and chairs.  So the idea occurred to me all of a sudden – indoor picnic date night!  This is also a great idea to try right now, when the weather gets cold, and you can easily cozy up with your sweetheart.

The simplest way is transforming normal dinner into romantic indoor picnic.  This was exactly what I did – make dinner as per usual (I think it was pasta, or maybe homemade pizza), spread out a blanket on the floor, set out cutlery, napkins, maybe turn on some romantic music, and light a candle or two.  Serve dinner already plated, and set the extras on the coffee table for seconds.  Done!  The change of scenery and pace totally set a romantic mood, and that evening, we lingered over dinner, laughing, feeding each other, it was perfect.

Want to take it up a notch and have even more romance?  Make dinner together, and maybe try something special.  For example, our second Valentine’s Day as a married couple.  I planned out the menu ahead of time, and we had filet mignon with caesar salad and sweet potato fries.  I put on the romantic music as we started cooking, and making dinner together in a tiny kitchen is already a fun and sweet couple experience.  Dinner was ready in record time, and we were already relaxed.  I set out the dishes on the coffee table like a buffet and poured two glasses of wine (homemade!).  This makes such an easy date night, and the only cost is what you already paid on groceries.

What are your favourite cheap/free date nights?  Share in the comments below!

A Dazzling Anniversary Weekend

This past weekend Nick and I celebrated 3 years of marriage – which feels at the same time like it was yesterday, and also like we’ve been together forever!  Funny how that happens when it’s true love 🙂

Before the weekend arrived, we went on a late night date to Demetre’s for delicious anniversary desserts, check out my red velvet cheesecake torte with white chocolate ice cream!

That night we also watched our wedding video while enjoying some pink champagne, which has become a bit of a tradition!

We started off the celebratory weekend on Friday, and sped off to our destination – Niagara Falls.  Yup, the (surprising) honeymoon capital of the world, at least self-proclaimed as such.  I like that we try to get away from home and the city on these occasions, otherwise I’m kind of the type that would get caught up in errands and projects hehe!

So, Niagara Falls.  We stayed in a charming hotel, in their Scarlett O’Hara suite which had a heart-shaped whirlpool – and believe me, that was a dream!  It was so relaxing and amazing.

We went for romantic walks along the water and throughout the city…

And even did a maze of mirrors!

After a few days of beautiful relaxation and romance, we decided to stop at a winery on the way home on Sunday.  We drove out to Chateau des Charmes, which was a lovely place, and happy coincidence, we found the exact wine we had at our wedding here!  Check out the beautiful property and roses on the grounds.

There were a few other little treats too, like cupcakes chosen to harken back to our wedding cake, and Lindor truffles like we gave as wedding favours.  It was a magical weekend, and a beautiful celebration of 3 years of happily ever after!

Have you guys ever been to Niagara Falls, and if so, what’s your favourite thing to do there?

Any sweet or funny anniversary traditions you have?


The Meet Cute – 5 years ago today…

A “meet cute” is the scene in a movie, usually a romance, where the hero and heroine meet for the first time in some adorable way.  Classics include literally running into each other, causing the girl to drop her books/files, while the chivalrous and now apologetic boy charms while helping her gather her things.  But this story is of our meet cute, and it’s one of our favourite relationship stories to tell.  It took place on Wednesday, June 24, 2009 in Waterloo, Ontario.

It was a beautiful, hot, summer day in Waterloo, and I had just gone down to the university campus to try and figure out class scheduling conflicts.  My efforts were in vain, so I decided it was best to head home.  I see my bus leaving just as I get the bus stop in my view, so now I’ll be waiting at the corner of King and University for an unknown amount of time (that’s the good ol’ GRT for you).

As I’m waiting, and not in the best of moods, I hear a voice from behind me – “Excuse me, miss in the dress, can I ask where do you get your hair cut?”  I turn, a little annoyed, and there he is.  A tall, handsome, blond stranger wearing a bright white linen shirt.  Nick.  He whips off his aviator sunglasses with a flourish and puts them on top of his head.  Honestly, between his charming smile and gorgeous green eyes, I find myself transfixed.  The faux hawk and scruffy goatee I’m not crazy about, but he’s still striking.  We converse, he tries to sell me a discount spa package that he’s been selling for work – $60 at Chameleon Spa for a haircut, pedicure, facial, wax, and massage (a $180 value!).  I’m not at all interested in the voucher, since I’m going to my salon tomorrow (but very interested in him), and in the meantime my bus arrives.

Well, Nick is not deterred, he hops on the bus with me to continue his pitch, noting that we go to the same university.  After a few stops, he realizes that I’m not buying, so he decides to hop off, but not before asking for my phone number.  The line was “You’re pretty cute, I’d love to see you again.”  I say “Sure, we’ll probably run into each other on campus.”  His response is “I mean, can I have your phone number and call you sometime?”  I figure the chance of him calling me is none to none, so I give it to him, writing it on his hand since his phone is dead.  He hops off, I continue home, and feel all warm and giddy inside for days.  Three days later we speak on the phone, he asks me out for gelato…. and the rest is history.

It’s been 5 years since then (crazy!), and I am still as enchanted and enamoured with him.  Thank you, darling, for trying to sell me on a spa package, hopping on that bus, and asking for my number.  I know my life changed that day, and we’ve been inseparable since then – I’d do it all again in a heartbeat.

Cute couples readers – what are your first meet stories?  


A Lovely Anniversary Weekend

Last week Nick and I had our second wedding anniversary (you can read all about the wedding here).  In truth, we can both hardly believe it’s been two years already, and we’re still in the happy newlywed mindset, so we’re very happy about that!  We both had a day of vacation during the week, which we spent together, relaxing, enjoying the glorious weather, and generally basking in each other’s company.  One of the highlights of the mid-week celebrations was a homemade steak dinner paired with homemade wine on our balcony, check out some pictures from that lovely evening.

We also continued one of our anniversary traditions, reciting our vows to each other again.  That always brings happy tears to my eyes, and brings us back to the very beginning of our marriage.

I also managed to check off one of my anniversary wish list items – I had ordered a custom cake, inspired by our wedding cake.  So we brought out our cake topper and enjoyed a nostalgic dessert as well.  Mmmm, marble cake with strawberry filling delicious memories.

Once the weekend hit, we had a romantic getaway planned.  We hopped onto the direct Toronto to Stratford shuttle to spend the weekend enjoying the little city and its wonderful theatre.  It was a great time walking around a picturesque little city, with a quite vibrant and charming downtown.  In the evening, we went to the Festival Theatre and watched this season’s production of Romeo and Juliet, a fittingly romantic play and my favourite Shakespeare play.

The next day, we got to explore more of Stratford’s downtown and beyond, venturing onto side streets and meandering through residential neighbourhoods.  We also explored the beautiful waterfront of the Avon River, complete with charming bridges and islands, and plentiful idyllic swans and ducks happily bobbing about.

By Sunday evening we were back home in Toronto, feeling relaxed and full of fresh air.  All in all it was a lovely, romantic weekend filled with sweet memories.  And we’ll definitely be back, Stratford, you’ve charmed us both!

(Cast photo of Romeo and Juliet from the Stratford Festival’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/StratfordFestival/photos_stream )

Summerlicious 2013 – Meow!

Summerlicious is a pretty big deal here in Toronto.  Basically a whole bunch of the top restaurants all around the city do a discounted prix fixe for about 3 weeks, and basically either offer a $15 lunch/$25 dinner or $25 lunch/$45 dinner.  And reservations go fast!  This year was the first year I actually paid attention to the subway ads and decided to do some sleuthing beforehand so we actually got out for it.

We also figured this would be the perfect way to explore a little more of our neighbourhood, so we picked out our restaurant, and made the reservation for a Saturday evening.  We decided to go for dinner at Alleycatz, a restaurant with live music we’ve probably walked by a gazillion times, and always said “we should go there sometime” – and so we finally did.  Plus they had the $25 dinner, so that was easier on the wallet.

The restaurant itself was pretty and dimly lit, so we didn’t take pics inside, but here are some pics taken from their gallery so you can see it:

And as for the Summerlicious experience itself, here is what we had:

Appetizers – Nick and I both had the mushroom crustini.

Mains – Nick had braised beef short ribs (in a port wine juice served with sweet potato mash and ratatouille vegetables), and I had the giant ravioli (stuffed with roasted tomato & ricotta cheese in a spicy rose sauce, organic spinach, topped with asiago cheese).

Dessert – Nick had the classic chocolate iced brownie with French vanilla ice cream, and I had the tuxedo truffle mousse cake.

It was amazing!  Everything was super tasty, and I had to literally talk myself out of licking the plate after the ravioli, it was just. that. good.  Salivating as I type right now remembering it.

The other big feature about the restaurant is their live music.  Being that it was Saturday night, the band started closer to 10pm, but already at 8:30pm we noticed that they started charging cover and people arrived in a more clubby mood.  By 10pm, it was getting pretty busy, and lots of people were laughing and having a good time.  Then the jazz kicked in, and we really like live music at dinner, it makes the whole experience more romantic.

All in all, we are super glad we went, and we really liked Alleycatz.  The prices for a la carte dinner is still a bit high for our cheapo tastes, but we’ll definitely be back for drinks, dessert, and they have a good constant prix fixe option.  Plus we can’t wait to check out their Salsa Mondays – where they do salsa dance lessons!

Their website is listed here, and you can check out menus, live acts, and even order food!

Have you guys tried any new places in your area – or elsewhere?  Spill!

(Photos taken from Alleycatz website at http://www.alleycatz.ca/)

Our Brand New Custom Bed

We’ve been having so much fun in the new apartment, especially now that unpacking is done and we are fully moved in!  One item that was pretty top priority was the bed.  Our bed is actually the bed Nick had as a teen.  We love it, and it’s sooooo cozy!  Plus the under-bed storage is fantastic in a small place.  Well, a little while back, the bed frame broke (like I said, it was like 10 years old, don’t get any ideas here), and we knew it would be tricky to replace, seeing as the bed is just shy of a double.  However, we had to take care of it, and reclaim our under the bed space!  No fear, my amazing (and handy!) husband to the rescue 🙂

He decided to make a bed for us!  So sweet, and romantic, now it’s even more special.  He designed it himself, based on a Youtube video for a slatted twin bed, and we decided to make it extra high for easily fitting plastic bins underneath.

Here’s my amazing hubby with the wood we bought at Home Depot:

Brought it home, cleared the living room, and he got to work, while I kept organizing the apartment – I’m pretty sure I was getting the bedroom dressers and such all set up at this point.

Here’s the actual frame, all assembled and on its side.

And the beautiful finished frame!  You can see the extra-tall legs, the slats, and the centre support beam:

And the maestro carpenter himself!  Yeah, I was beaming with pride at this point.Next came a bit of lifting and manoeuvring, and we got it into its spot in the bedroom, below our pretty wedding archway:

And here it is all made!  Happy and wonderful – and again the genius behind it all!

If you’re wondering why there are no pictures of Nick working on the bed, it’s because he sometimes prefers to do work around the house with a pants-optional dress code (it gets very warm in our apartment), but then again why not?  I was basically helping him move stuff around in 4 inch heels, so that’s not much better in terms of practicality (or common sense).

Anyways, back to the bed.  We love it, and it feels so luxurious to climb into a nice high bed at night.  We’re pretty much at the same height as the windows, so even the view is better from up here!

Stay tuned for part 2, when we paint and make a custom padded headboard!  Swooning just at the thought of that headboard….