The Happy Lainy just celebrated its 1 month anniversary. As a marketer, I know how important feedback is. So tell me what you think so far…
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Has a man ever made you feel like the most amazing thing in the entire world. Like you are worth the world and beyond? You realize what love is, not because any one particular thing, but you sit back and reflect and realize how absolutely incredible someone is and you just cannot live with them.
You might hate them sometimes, you want to kick them in the balls a million times cause they say mean harsh words (that they probably don’t mean). But you don’t, not only because it’s incredibly inhumane, but because well, you love them.
There are a million reasons why I love Marc, but the latest episode made him just toppled the LOVE scale.
This is what happened:
Thursday about 10pm after returning from the gym, we had a huge arguement involving salad dressing pounding on counter, Marc storming out and me going MIA until 1am. And all this drama was because I got angry at him for not eating dinner… We love blowing things out of proportion.
Long story short, we made up cuz we both realized that we couldn’t stay mad at each other… I knew I was over being mad when I came out from the bathroom and I saw him when he got home and couldn’t stop myself from having a half grin from seeing him. (And our make up sex is always fantastic.)
So not even 24 hrs after we fought, I came home from the gym to see fresh flowers on our dining table, a card and a…… SWAROVSKY bag! Couldn’t believe it… it was a lovely little tearjerker card, a lululemon gift certificate AND a huge swarovsky ring!!!
All these are “just because” gifts. There was never a boyfriend that has ever gotten me a just because gift. It’s just like my birthday! What surprised me was that he picked the one that I loved most, and the sizing was perfect!
I am one lucky girl.
He did good.
The first meal I learned to make was Speghetti and meat sauce when I was in my teens. Over the years, I have perfected the art, adding more spices and marinating and changing temps etc. etc.
There are many variations depending what materials I have to work with.
This is what I made on Friday night:
I started with sauteeing the onions. I normally julianne the onions because I love onions, but since Marc likes them diced and barely noticeable. Add some garlic, salt and pepper to make the onions super yummy and tasty.
Once the onions are nice and soft add in ground beef. I used a lb of extra lean meat.
I didn’t have time to marinate the beef, but it is very important to flavor the meat, even just 1/2 hr of marinating would suffice. Instead, I just added some oregano, fresh chopped basil (from my plant), chili flakes, thyme and S&P.
I always add a touch of wine when marinating, but since I didn’t, I’ll add it while I’m browning the meat. To ensure that the meat really absorbs the flavors, I turned it to medium heat to cook it slowly. The ideal is to cook it at low, but I’m impatient and hungry.
I used 2005 Monte Cheval Vranac this time. I got it as a house warming gift awhile ago. Later found it it costs less than $10 a bottle. Cheap bastards. But it’s pretty hearty, with indistinct sour berry fruit, leather and earth. I read it has a touch of Cabernet Savignon in it too. Not good to drink, so I use it for marinate. BTW, my gneral rule for marinating with wine is simple. (because I am a simple person) White meat=white wine. Red meat=redwine. It makes so much sense…
I hope you started boiling the water for your pasta when you started the onions… the timing is almost perfect to have everything finish at the same time. As an ex-cook, timing is crucial to ensure your entire meal is done at the same time so hot dishes doesn’t sit and cools for no reason. I added some frozen mixed veggies to add some color to the dish. I also cooked broccoli on the side because I want to make sure I don’t eat too much carbs.
Make sure your drain the meat of the oil first. Nothing is more disgusting than an oily pasta sauce. It is recommended that you even rinse the meat with hot water. I prefer not to, just to savor the taste. I like using canned tomato sauce, it makes my life 5 billion times easier. I used Unico this time because it’s the brand that Marc always buys. Not my favorite. BRAVO is the best tomato sauce ever, it only has 1 simple kind, not like some that has like: tomato basil, parmesan, vodka.. blah blah blah. Bravo is just a simple tomato sauce base that lets YOU make it to what you want it to be. They’re normally at the very bottom of the shelf at grocery stores because it’s cheap like 99 cents a can.
Add more spice.. I added more fresh Basil this time, we were craving tomato basil… plus our basil plant is dying. This is when you add spices to your sauce. Don’t taste the sauce for flavor right now, it won’t taste like anything, you have to let you cook on low for a good 10 minutes before the flavors start emerging.
Wanted more wine in the sauce too.
Drain pasta, pour desired amount of sauce ontop, garnish and.. VOILA!!!
(I know.. bad presentation with the drippy sauce… whateve.)
The Passionate eye featured a documentary yesterday on Sex Slaves. This documentary focused mainly on girls taken from impoviahed Eastern Europe, like Moldova. These girls are often lured in by promise of jobs and money to work in hotels, restaurants by travelling to foreign countries such as Turkey, Yugloslavia, Albania, England and even Canada. However, once arrived, they are sold off to pimps as sex slaves, raped and beaten for nothing in exchange. These girls are sold by traffickers that sell them for as little as $1000 by people they trusted.
Though a lot of girls do travel abroad to find jobs and are successful, many are not. The most horrific matter is that the police are often bought off by these pimps so there isn’t even use going to authorities. Moreover, even given concrete evidence, the jurisdiction protects the offenders and gives the sex slaves no rights because they are technically illegally in the country.
Canada isn’t innocent either! The canadian government legalized a stripper visa that let’s girls legally come to Canada to be worked as sex slaves. Like in Europe, these girls thought they were in the country to make money at hotels or restaurants, end up signing contracts as strippers because they don’t know the language. And in turn was used as sex slaves.
I trully think that there are several angles the war on human trafficking must be fought from. Internationally, the demand for such services must be eliminated and therefore without demand, there shall not be any supply. Secondly, the main reason that these girls are risking their lives is because of the poverty. After being returned as a sex slave, one girl was forced to go back to Turkey to prosptitute for herself to make money for the family.
The Government MUST take action in protecting the rights of these women as victims of human rights violations and be protected from returning to the world of prostitution. Violators must be punished and stricter regulations must be made against trafficing of all kinds.
It baffles me that we are living in such luxury with such great prosperity and moaning that we have to give up our million dollar homes when across the ocean, people are being forced into prostitution. And where a legal system is so corrupt that asking the police for help will only harm the situation. Don’t think I am a huge commie or anything, but why can’t we just spread out the wealth where everyone can live comfortably. O right, humans are greedy…
I have to research further on different international activist groups that are fighting against human trafficking. So definitely going to have links coming up. As well as a link to the documentary.
Marc and I are deeply disturbed by the events of this documentary. We both watched it from the beginning to the end and definitely want to do something about it. We want to contribute to the cause. We don’t believe that donating money will create long term change. However, we haven’t found any real ACTION that we can get involved with.
The best thing about my apartment has got to be the stone’s throw distance from Victoria, where all the best festivals are held. From July 9th-12th, it’s Sunfest! After a nutritious dinner at Swiss Chalet, we took a walk to the park to check out the festivities.
I think this year’s sunfest is a lot busier than ever! A lot more vendors. considering it was a Thursday night. It was BUSY!!!! Crowds and crowds of people everywhere. Note to all the parents out there, a toddler with a bike is not a good idea to go through the festival with.
The agonizingly tempting aromas of all the different food vendors is not for anyone on a diet. So I highly suggest you take a detour away from the main diagonal walk path from the north west to the south east corner of park.
I find the side paths are where all the gems are. There, I found tons of little vendors with great hand made crafts and original pieces that haven’t been seen before. I haven’t had a chance to explore every booth because of Toddler and my impatient soul.
Inspried lines, by Leah Marlene Wilb definitely caught my eye! Featuring original black and white ink art. The detail involved in the pointilism and the intricate line work is enough to make me swoon.
Another Gem I found is Nharo! Paul WellHauser Featuring fair trade art from Africa. This amazing littly Rhino is made from ironwood, heavy as hell. It is normally $380. But this poor little fellow has a chipped ear and is on sale for $180. Get it before it’s gone! Marc and I were so tempted to take him home. If we see it on Sunday we’re definitely going to grab it.
I found a list of all the exhibitors as well.
We’re going to go again on Sunday night when we don’t have the little toddler to really enjoy the festival. Here’s a list of performers for the festival as well.
I urge everyone to come and check it out. It’s quite a hoot. But don’t stop there, there are some other amazing shops and restaurants on Richmond Row as well.
AND.. YES… I KNOW.. MY SPELLING IS ATROCIOUS
iI’ve always loved Alice in Wonderland. My mother bought me a hardcover antique version of it as a little girl and I remember rereading it a trillion times over. Losing myself to the mystery to the fantasy that surrounds the story. Tim Burton is recreating the movie with real life characters. And Tim Burton’s right hand, Johnny Depp is the Mad Hatter. Mia Wasikowska as Alice, Helena Bonham Carter as the Red Queen, and Anne Hathaway as the White Queen. See images HERE
Remember Gwen Stefani’s Alice in Wonderland phase? I love it so much. I love the fashion that surrounds it. The magically blue, the frilly-ness the black bow and white socks and Mary Jane shoes.
A lot of designers tried to recreate fashion inspired by Lewis Carrol’s acid-trip stories. I wish I could quote you some designers, but I cannot. Because that’s not important. Just absorb the talent and take what you can out of it.
“…height of 230 feet where they will experience the thrill ride of a lifetime along a track that is more than a mile long. Riders will reach speeds of up to 77 miles per hour taking 85 degree inclines. This ride is not for the faint hearted. Intensifying the action packed adventure, the ride features prototype open-air seating that allows all riders to experience an unobstructed view of all the thrills and excitement on one of North America’s best coasters. The ride runs parallel to the shore of Wonderland Lake adding a visual excitement that few other parks offer.
Three 32-passenger trains
Eight cars, with four seats per car, per train
Track Length: 5,318 ft
Height: 70 Metres or 230 feet.
Ride Time: 3 minutes, 10 seconds
Ride Guest Capacity: 1545 persons per hour”
-Bohemoth Roller Coaster, Toronto Attractions
Stats.. enough to make me pee my pants…