picasso

Inspired to hang a little something on our kitchen wall, I was hunting to find a Euro/art/Picasso poster. And I did find one that I loved…but thanks to google, I also found the Olivia Rubin ‘Picasso’ shoe designed for Dune, a shoe company from the UK. Why oh why does google do such things to me? There’s another item for the wish list!

Check out her clothing website as well! Very cool.

Picasso poster

OR Picasso Shoe

cabbage rolls and hockey

As Ry and I drove home this morning from my mom’s house, we were talking and laughing about the crazy Easter dinner we had just enjoyed last night. My mom is an incredible, incredible cook. She had created an amazing Ukranian dinner with all the trimmings.

And normally, our dinners are great! A little sibling rivalry, a little joke, a little ‘food’ silence. You know, the usual! But last night, as many of you probably know, was the 6th game of the Canuck-Blackhawks series. The game was supposed to end at 7pm, so momma had timed her dinner to be prepped and ready to plate for 7:01pm. BUT, the ‘Nucks couldn’t quite get ‘er done in the 3 periods they were alloted, so overtime it was. But Ukrainian food will wait for no-one once it’s ready to go. And Christina and I were dying sitting on the couch, smelling the food simmering in the distance. So, we all gathered quickly to the table, loaded up our plates full of AMAZING food, and dug in.

Not before the hard-core hockey fans of my family scouted out the prime t.v watching chairs at the table. The game continued about half-way through my perogies, so instead of the usual dinner conversations, the eyes were darting between the t.v screen and the plates of goodness.

I was sitting across from Mark, Joel, Christina and Mike, and in my opinion, the more entertaining view of the night was watching these die-hard fans! The sudden widening of the eyes. The quickened chewing of the food. The little yelps, grunts and mumbles. The fork that I was closely watching in case it accidentally launched across the table in a moment of excitement.

But, alas, the Canucks did not win, and as such we got to have our key-lime simply enjoying the company of family. I am blessed to have a family that when we come together, it is just so great to be together again, no matter the circumstances. Always fun, always entertaining, and always full of love.

 

Homemade cabbage rolls.....

My Ukrainian grandpa! xo

Malaga

We managed to have, what ended up being the worst, and funniest meal of our entire trip (well, except maybe the hamburger we ordered at the airport on the way home, which came without a bun. Yes, without a bun). We were searching for a restaurant called ‘Chinitas’ on Chinita Ave. I thought I had seen the street name, so we headed down the tight alleyway to a small area with 2 restaurants back to back. The restaurant was called something like “Ruana de Chinitas”, so I figured, must be it! The waiters did look a little crazy, but sometimes what makes a gem a gem is their craziness! So, we sat and ordered our sangria.

We ordered a few items that sounded good, and then happily drank our sangria while we anxiously awaited our tasty treats!

As the plates began to show up, my eyes jetted quickly to the side to see Ryan’s reaction. Suddenly on our table, was a huge pile of green tomatoes covered with a lime green slime of sorts. This was quickly followed by what looked like a mini pie made completely of egg. No crust or anything (and as we soon found out, no real flavor either). And then the calamari arrived… ok, and then what I was most looking forward to, the deep fried prawns. Well, these babies were deep fried all right, completely in thier little carcases. Head, tail and even their little legs. Mmmm. Yummy.

Once the waiter (who we decided was really the cook who forgot to change out of his pyjamas before coming to work), left the table, we looked at each other and just burst out laughing. This was the most ecclectic group of dishes I had ever seen. But what the heck! When in Spain….

The tomatoes turned out to be pretty good! The calamari was fine. Nothing to write home about. The egg pie was, weird. And the little shrimpies…I peeled a few of them and ate the meat, but after that, I’d had enough. I mean, seriously, you order ‘deep fried’ to enjoy the crispy part, but there was no way I was going to shove one of those things in my mouth, dangly legs and all.

So we did the best we could without looking rude, finished our drinks and headed off down the street. This was when we came across the true ‘Chinitas’ on Chinita Ave. And yes, it looked fabulous…. ahh, next time.

Malaga was full of some amazing finds. We enjoyed cafe con leche every morning in one of the many cafes. We loved to see the orange trees in all the parks and walkways. We climbed the Moorish castle on the hill and took in some amazing views of the city. Was able to soak in the life and works of Picasso (Malaga being his hometown). And we even came across a Palm Sunday parade our last night in the city, where we watched the locals of Malaga celebrate the beginning of Easter week. It truly was a wonderful trip to another world.

Barcelona

The city of Barcelona is a busy, beautiful, grungy, old-world, new world city. From the dirty street corners at night to the awe-inspiring creations of gaudi, Barcelona is like a sweet and sour candy. It makes your eyes burst wide open, makes your lips tingle and your face crinkle, but you always go back for more.

We had just 4 days to soak in as much of the city as possible. The first night, we thought we’d go out and celebrate over sangria and some tapas. What did we get? Sangria and randomly chopped up hot dogs with a few pieces of bread. Because Ry and I do not know Spanish, we definitely had some ‘unforgettable’ meals.

The next few days, we spent wandering through the great works of art such as Sagrada Familia and Guell Park, meandering through the back alleys of the Gothic Quarter, window shopping and trying to take in all the craziness of Las Ramblas. In the evenings, we would laugh and simply enjoy each other’s company over a bottle of crazy cheap (but very very tasty) wine. Eat some amazing food, and eat some not-so amazing food, and watch the eccentricities of the city pass by.

The late afternoon sun streaming through the windows of Sagrada Familia.

The beauty of this light was enough to truly calm ones’ soul.

Ryan’s pic of me climbing down the tower at Sagrada. My pics of the open squares and alleyways in the Gothic Quarter.


Our late night Metro ride. Always entertaining.

The evening scene in Barcelona. Surrounded by beautiful light and intense amounts of garbage. By morning time? Cleaned and washed, ready for another day.

And the literal eye candy was something to be seen at the famous Mercat de la Boqueria. These are some of the more pretty sites. I won’t post some of the ‘meatier’ things I saw that were close to putting me back on veggie food for life.

And lastly, a beautiful set of tiles found at Guell Park, created by Gaudi.

Part II – Barcelona complete.

Part III – Malaga…to be continued

Pike Street Blues

Travelling is definitely one of my great loves, and this past 2 weeks, I was able to stretch my legs and go across the world.

Work was done, the car was packed, and instead of waiting until the wee hours of the morning to leave (which was the plan), Ry and my mom convinced me to leave that night…just in case. Just in case what? Well, let me tell you.

We leave, and all goes fairly well. We get to Seattle at midnight. We’re tired, we’re excited, we’re hungry, and we finally get off the crazy, almost killed us, I5.

All we can find (without a map) is a McDonalds. We order 4 $1 cheeseburgers and go to bed. Where? Well, since ‘the plan’ was to leave the next morning, we slept in the first class comfort of our front car seats. Ahhhh, yes. Classy.

We twist and turn until 6am the next morning and I am just so excited to finally see Seattle. Ryan reluctantly drives me back down the I5 to the downtown area of Seattle. Off we head to try and find the Pike Street fish market, now with a gas station Seattle map.

For those of you who don’t recall what those maps are like, they are HUGE. That thing, when opened, was the span of the whole width of the car. How was I supposed to read that thing! Poor Ry hadn’t even had a coffee yet, and he’s got me folding this enormous map out, crunching and crinkling, giving no real help or insight into where we are going.

But we made it! We found the comfort of a little coffee shop just up from the market where we enjoyed Seattle’s Best Coffee. Great books lined the shelves, coffee bean sacs on the walls, and a barista who made sure we got the breakfast sandwich we were craving.

We do the tourist thing and head to the fish market. We saw the fish, we saw the flowers, we saw the fresh veggies. We decide to walk around the block before heading back down the I5 to the airport, coming across some funky grafitti, angled streets and alleyways.

And here’s when the fun really started. As we’re heading out of downtown, needing to get to the airport, Ry noticed that the car heat is really starting to creep up. We figure, well maybe it’ll calm down once we get going. But unfortunately, that just made it oh, so worse. The gauge got so hot it may as well of fallen off the meter! We had to pull off the road, so we take the next exit possible, which begins to lead us…. to the docks. To the ferries. Oh, good. We FINALLY find a spot to pull over before getting docked onto a ferry, and as Ry opens the hood of the car, a lovely poof of smoke jumps into the air.

We aren’t going to make it, are we?

Throughout the following 45 minutes, I had a lump in my throat the size of a basketball. I figured if anyone asked me a question, all they would have gotten was an answer of sobs. Good thing no one was around but us and the birds….

Ry came to the rescue with finding a water hose behind some random building. The radiator fluid container was totally dry. What?! Yes. Thankfully, nothing had blown up completely, so we filled that sucker up with water, crossed our fingers, and tried to find our way out of this ferry exit, back to the I5, and to the airport before we missed our flight to Barcelona. And that is what we did.

Stay tuned for Barcelona pics and tales over the next couple days!

Wedding Belles

Wanted to share this amazing find on the Kate Spade website. There is now a ‘Wedding Belles‘ section, full of amazing shoes, fun jewels and some awfully cute dresses. Check out the link and a few of my fave pics below (courtesy of Kate Spade website).

Say Yes 'Mrs' Necklace, Charm Shoe, Sparkling Point Metallic Amanda Purse, Cam Too Shoe

 

oh, spain

In less than a week, this senorita will be hopping on a jet plane to the faraway lands of Spain. This is a first time experience for me, and I am oh, so excited. Ry and I are going for 10 days, 5 of which will be spent in Barcelona, and 5 that will be spent in Malaga.

To help me get in the Spanish mood, I have been looking up Spanish inspiración (inspiration), and this is what I found.

 

 

Tonight, I will watch Vicky Cristina Barcelona, a 2008 film by Woody Allen, set in the city of Barcelona (hence the title).

“Two girlfriends on a summer holiday in Spain become enamored with the same painter, unaware that his ex-wife, with whom he has a tempestuous relationship, is about to re-enter the picture.”

 

 

 

 

 

Jamie Oliver’s version of Paella. Mmmm… paella and a movie. Oh, my.

 

 

 

 

 

And if I could only lounge in The Barcelona Chair while enjoying my exotic treats….

Happy Friday!