Reminiscing About The Long Weekend

Last weekend was a big one for Canadians. Every year on July 1 we celebrate our country’s confederation, but this year was even more important because it marked our 150th year as Canada.And because the holiday fell on a Saturday, this year we also had a nice long weekend! My boyfriend and I decided to head up to our friend’s cottage for some fun where we spent time at the beach, had campfires and explored.We also spent time playing some games. The guys especially enjoyed playing a couple games of ‘Warhammer’ – a table-top fantasy game that involves strategy. Two or more players compete against each other with armies built with miniatures that come in a variety of races, and they take turns moving around the board to simulate combat. It is a very involved game and can take hours to complete.One thing that I especially love about the cottage is the mornings where everything is so quiet and peaceful. It’s nice to wake up and sit on the patio with a cuppa and just relax…… And hanging out with the kitties – Karma and Dharma.On the evening of Canada Day, everyone gathers down at the beach to watch the fireworks shows, which are put on by several families. We got down to the beach just in time to watch a particularly fascinating show up close!∆ ∆ ∆

To round out the long weekend and the Canada Day festivities, I celebrated my birthday (as I do every year because it’s on the fourth of July! 😋 )

My boyfriend and I went to Waterloo and spent a few hours there. On the way, we stopped in Stratford so we could pick up iced Americanos at Balzac’s for the road.

When we got to Waterloo, we went to J&J Superstore to look at boardgames. I was given some money as a birthday gift and wanted to put it towards one of the boardgames I’ve had my eye on.

If you’re ever in Waterloo, or you are just looking for an awesome board and card game store, I highly suggest you check out J&J. You won’t be disappointed by their selection!

Though I’ve wanted a couple of boardgames for a while, I really had my heart set on picking up Carcassonne.It is one of my absolute favourite games because it is both fun and easy to quickly teach others. It’s also great for two players, so my boyfriend and I can play it together a lot (something we already do on his tablet with the Android version of the game).

The game starts with a single tile face up, with the other tiles shuffled face down. Players then take turns picking up tiles and laying them out in order to build the medieval French countryside of Carcassonne (a real place in France!). Each new tile has to be placed in such a way that it connect to a tile that has been placed previously, it also must extend upon the feature of the tile it touches: roads must connect to roads, fields to field, and cities to cities.When we got back to our apartment, my boyfriend treated me to gifts of apple pie flavoured moonshine from Murphy’s Law Distillery, chocolates and tickets to see one of my favourite musicians Buffy Sainte-Marie! He also made us a beautiful steak dinner that consisted of roasted baby potatoes, Brussels sprouts and fiddleheads, with mushrooms sautéed in butter with onions and garlic.To go with dinner, we open a bottle of wine that I picked up exclusively for my birthday. It was one I had never tried before, but I really liked the design of the label (which is how I usually choose my wine, beer and cider haha) and to be fair, I really don’t think you can go wrong with Cab-Sauv!

All-in-all it was a pretty fantastic long-Canada Day-birthday-weekend! I couldn’t have asked for better weather either.

… And of course I got my birthday drink from Starbucks to top it all off!

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What did you get up to on the Canada Day long weekend? Did you do anything extra special or out of the ordinary? I would love to hear all about it!

Jam-Packed Weekend

Now that it is officially summer, a lot of events are happening around the City of London. This past weekend in particular was super fun, but also super busy!

First, we celebrated my birthday a couple of weeks early on Friday with a group of some very dear friends. The morning was a bit worrisome because it had rained… and rained, and rained!  Luckily it ended up holding off just in time so we could go mini golfing at the Tin Cup!After we went for dinner at Beertown Public House where I had the Crispy Chicken Sandwich with a side of french fries and gravy. It was probably the best crispy chicken I’ve ever had, if I’m being honest – it was so flavourful and was crisped to perfection. The sandwich came on a sesame seed bun with lettuce, tomato, Gruyère, roasted garlic aïoli and pickled jalapeños (YUM!)

Where we were sitting was unfortunately too dark for photos, but I can tell you the food was delicious and I would highly recommend it if you’re having a hard time deciding on what to get!

After, most of us headed back to my apartment for drinks and boardgames. It was a great way to end the night! Everyone was too full for cake, so I sent everyone home with their slice. It was a very beautiful cake given to me by my boyfriend, and it was delicious too!

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On Saturday evening we headed out with our friends Lenny, Heather and Eric to check out the Appleseed Cider Festival – an event that celebrates Ontario Craft Cider producers and their cider products!I tried four different ciders, three were from KW Craft Cider in Kitchener-Waterloo, Ont. and the other was from the County Cider Company in Waupoos, Ont. The ones from KW Craft Cider were Cherrymint, Thai Ginger, and Canadian Shield Berries. The one I tried from County Cider Co. was called Feral.The Cherrymint cider was good, you could really taste the mint on the end notes. This cider was very tart – I would consider it to be a dry cider, but I’m not sure. All-in-all it was good, but I don’t know if I would buy it.

The Thai Ginger cider was very unique, but tasted great! You could really taste the hot green Thai chili peppers, but the taste was well-balanced out by the ginger spice. I sampled a chili pepper beer in Santa Fe, and the flavour and heat of the pepper were very overwhelming. This cider would be great on a hot day, especially if you’re looking for something to sip on.

The Canadian Shield Berries cider was delicious! It tasted like… sparkly juice! (If sparkly juice were a thing and had a flavour haha). You could taste the tartness of the currants and cranberries, but also the sweetness of the raspberries, blueberries and strawberries. I normally am cautious of ‘strawberry’ flavours, as I find they can come out too strongly for my liking. There’s nothing wrong with strawberry, it’s just not my preference!

The Feral cider was by far my most favourite. It’s a combination of County Cider Co.’s Waupoos Premium cider – an off-dry cider with tangy apple flavour – and wild raspberries and cranberries. I’m a big fan of cranberry juice, and so I was pleased when I could really taste the cranberry at the beginning and then the raspberry at the end. I think I will be calling in an order, since Feral is not sold in LCBO stores!

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On Sunday afternoon we checked out the International Food Festival in Victoria Park.We got there at a really great time, and there was tons of food to choose from. I went with a beef and lamb gyro from Sammy’s Souvlaki.I forgot to take a photo before digging in… so worth it though! Mmm.

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You can tell that summer is finally here in Ontario – there is so much to do and see during this time of year. I look forward to sharing my summer adventures with you!

If you’re from Canada – what are you doing this Canada Day long weekend, and do you have any special plans for Canada 150?

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