Green & Black’s chocolate pumpkin brownies recipe + A giveaway!

Green & Black’s chocolate pumpkin brownies recipe + A giveaway!

I know it’s like 1,000 degrees outside and the last thing a lot of us want to do is turn the oven on and bake, but bookmark this recipe to make when the heat wave breaks because you’re going to want to eat these chocolate pumpkin brownies all Fall. Developed by natural foodie Regina Braun of LeeLalicious for Green & Black’s chocolate, they’re a fudgey, not overly sweet treat, easy to make for Thanksgiving or Friendsgiving or whenever. Green & Black’s sent me some bars to give it a try, plus a selection for one lucky reader.  Continue reading “Green & Black’s chocolate pumpkin brownies recipe + A giveaway!”

Ladies Who Drink: A Stylishly Spirited Guide to Mixed Drinks and Small Bites + Win a copy!

Ladies Who Drink: A Stylishly Spirited Guide to Mixed Drinks and Small Bites + Win a copy!

Fixing drinks has never been my domaine, but look out world, ’cause that’s about to change. Thanks to Running Press, I have everything I need to transform from a cocktail dunce to a cocktail diva in Ladies Who Drink: A Stylishly Spirited Guide to Mixed Drinks and Small Bites by Anne Keenan Higgins. Small in size but mighty in know-how, the lighthearted guide takes readers through the basics and beyond: from home bar essentials (including liquors, tools and glasses) to party-planning tips, to cocktails and nibblies for every occasion. (Think Backyard Barbecue, Ice-Skating Party, A Trip to Margaritaville, and Sunday Brunch Bloodies.) Served with a splash of mixology history and infused with charming illustrations of ladies who lunch (and sip!) looking oh-so-chic and you’ve got a practical and pretty starter for anyone new to the bar. Continue reading “Ladies Who Drink: A Stylishly Spirited Guide to Mixed Drinks and Small Bites + Win a copy!”

Gourmet Trading stocked our pantry with Stonewall Kitchen specialty foods. Here’s how they went over.

Gourmet Trading stocked our pantry with  Stonewall Kitchen specialty foods. Here’s how they went over.

Like a lot of people trying to feed a family on a budget, we tend to stock our pantry with the same things week after week. We know what will get eaten, what probably won’t, and how long our favourite dishes will take to prepare. We shop with a list, pick up what we need, and generally ignore the rest (unless something’s on super sale, which I cannot resist). But when Toronto-based Gourmet Trading reached out to me last month, I was reminded that there’s a whole world of foods and flavours available to explore and enjoy. Gourmet Trading has been bringing that world to Canada for nearly 30 years as an importer and distributor of specialty foods. They sent me a selection of products from one of their top-selling brands, Maine’s award-winning Stonewall Kitchen, and I was pleasantly surprised to see how well they went over. Will they be new pantry staples? Read on and see.  Continue reading “Gourmet Trading stocked our pantry with Stonewall Kitchen specialty foods. Here’s how they went over.”

Talking top back-to-school trends with Staples + A $250 giveaway!

Talking top back-to-school trends with Staples + A $250 giveaway!

Things are looking up for back to school at casa try small things. The kids are happy with their teachers (for a change the school’s told us who they’ll have before the first day), last year’s backpacks and lunch bags are in good shape for another year and I won’t be on duty for every after-school pick-up, which saves me from making small talk every day in the yard. And AND (and it’s no small thing), Staples sent us enough school supplies to last the whole year through. Today I’m sharing a sampling of the season’s major trends — Staples has you covered! — plus a $250 Staples giveaway for one lucky reader.  Continue reading “Talking top back-to-school trends with Staples + A $250 giveaway!”

Sneaking in Netflix in style #StreamTeam

Sneaking in Netflix in style #StreamTeam

I live in jeans and tees year-round and try to stretch out sandal season as long as I can, but watching Suits on Netflix makes me want to dress better. Those pencil skirts that make Rachel’s legs look a mile long, the made-to-measure dresses that fit Donna and Jessica like a glove, those big brown puppy dog eyes that make Harvey — oh sorry, we were talking about clothes. But when funds for fun things are short and you’re honestly too lazy to put in much effort, a cute clutch can punch it up on the cheap. And if it’s large enough, double as a tablet case so you can sneak a peek at those big brown eyes wherever you go. Here are my favourite clutches for your ipad mini (or similar-sized tablet) and a few other things besides. (PS: Mine is on sale.)  Continue reading “Sneaking in Netflix in style #StreamTeam”

A tired corner gets a cheery refresh with Thimblepress + A giveaway

A tired corner gets a cheery refresh with Thimblepress + A giveaway

It’s reveal day! Woohoo! I’ve been wanting to give my favourite corner a refresh for what feels like forever, and Saturday I finally rolled up my sleeves and got started. I stripped the living room wallpaper, gave the walls a fresh coat of paint, and brought in some colourful accessories my friends at Thimblepress sent from their HQ in Jackson, Mississippi. I’ve loved their cheery art prints and greeting cards and confetti push-pops and pretty much everything they do for a few years now, and here I’ve incorporated some of my new and old favourites to give the space a happy vibe. (The new goodies were free of charge in exchange for this post.)  Continue reading “A tired corner gets a cheery refresh with Thimblepress + A giveaway”

Ain’t no party like a pizza party + A Panago Pizza giveaway

Ain’t no party like a pizza party + A Panago Pizza giveaway

If you’re a regular reader you’ll know large gatherings aren’t exactly my thing (who am I kidding? small gatherings aren’t my thing either 😬) but I do love planning them. And you know I can’t resist a good DIY. So today I’m all kinds of excited to share scenes from the pizza party we had last week to celebrate the start of summer holidays. Our friends at Panago Pizza supplied the food in exchange for this post, which left me more time (some might say too much time ha ha) to obsess about focus on the decor and all the rest. Try our DIYs to bring a little extra to your own pizza party this summer and let someone else take care of the pies. Continue reading “Ain’t no party like a pizza party + A Panago Pizza giveaway”

New Cacao 70 Eatery in Gatineau a chocolate-lover’s treat, and eye candy too

New Cacao 70 Eatery in Gatineau a chocolate-lover’s treat, and eye candy too

I’m pret-ty sure I’m not going to win Mother of the Year, but after Wednesday’s epic pizza party (more on that in another post) and yesterday’s trip to the new Cacao 70 Eatery in Gatineau, I might be in the running for Mom of the Month. Plus it’s World Chocolate Day (did you know?) and not only did we celebrate, but we did it a day early. The restaurant is Cacao 70’s newest location (it opened last month) and one of three new concepts for the Quebec-based chocolatier. We were invited to sample the menu free of charge in exchange for a review, so today I’d like to show you around and tell you more about our visit.  Continue reading “New Cacao 70 Eatery in Gatineau a chocolate-lover’s treat, and eye candy too”

Five things + a Netflix giveaway for two!

Five things + a Netflix giveaway for two!

It’s sweltering hot outside and hubby has the kids at the pool, so I thought I’d pop in here for a bit and write a quick hello and how-do. AS IF it only takes me a bit to write a post. Ha! When pigs fly. But I’ll to try to make it quick. Here’s a few pics from life lately (starting with this snap my mom took when she visited last month) and a Netflix giveaway just because.  Continue reading “Five things + a Netflix giveaway for two!”

Clear the clutter! Spring cleaning your Netflix profile #StreamTeam

Clear the clutter! Spring cleaning your Netflix profile #StreamTeam

Spring cleaning your Netflix profile feature image 2

We always say our house never looks as clean as it does when someone’s coming to visit. And you can tell by the state of the house that we don’t get many visitors. But with Spring sprung and Summer just around the corner, I feel like I want to tackle some of those long-overlooked areas, including my digital spaces.  Continue reading “Clear the clutter! Spring cleaning your Netflix profile #StreamTeam”