Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Une Visite à Montréal

I can't believe summer vacation is almost half way over! I don't have any major trips planned but did take a short road trip up to Montreal this past weekend to visit my cousins.  My mother was born and raised in Montreal and that side of my family all live in Canada.  I have four cousins who are around my age who live in and around Montreal so every couple of years or so I drive the 5 1/2 hours up to visit. The drive went by pretty quickly thanks to purchasing a couple audio books:

Both absolutely hilarious and a bit raunchy!  Kathy's audiobook is great because it doesn't sound like she's reading but rather than she's doing one of her standup routines or just talking straight to you!  Highly recommend both!

Some pictures from the trip...I stayed with my cousin Laurence and her family...

She owns a beautiful little home decor boutique in Montreal called Buk & Nola 
(you should totally go if you are ever in that city)...

I visited the shop on Saturday and we had lunch...poutine!!

If you aren't familiar, poutine is a French-Canadian specialty dish which consists of fries covered in gravy topped with a special kind of curd cheese...absolutely delicious!  
I get it every time I visit and can sometimes find it at certain places here in Maine. 
Sunday we went to my cousin Caroline's place (which is beautiful, on the riverfront, and has a salt water pool...awesome for her four boys) for swimming, boating, and dining.  It was lovely to visit and meet the two new babies (my second cousins) who have been born since my last visit...

The kids played quietly while the adults ate dinner...

It was a wonderful trip and I'm hoping they will all come for a visit to Maine next summer!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Sarasota Lemonade Recipe

I've been trying to entertain more and this summer is the perfect time to do so! This weekend I hosted a little cocktail party and served up a delicious pitcher of Sarasota Lemonade...

The recipe comes from this blog that I found on Pinterest!  It calls for:

-2 bottles of Moscato white wine, 750mL (or one large 1.5L bottle)
-1 can pink lemonade concentrate (just dump this in, don't add water)
-3 cups Sprite (more or less to taste)
-1 package of raspberries
(the original recipe calls for fresh but I used frozen because they weren't available)

Crush half the raspberries and put them in the bottom of your pitcher, then pour in the remaining ingredients and stir. Add a few ice cubes and some raspberries to each individual glass before filling up!  Sweet, delicious, and totally festive for summer parties!  It was a BIG HIT!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

WIWW: Red, White, and Blue

Linking up this week to What I Wore Wednesday at The Pleated Poppy! This week's outfit features a twist on the classic red, white, and blue! The super comfy gray and navy fold-over top skirt is from Target and the basic navy tank is $3 at Walmart (just picked up a bunch of different colors). Nautical 'rope' sandals are from LOFT (a few seasons ago).

The 'red' in this patriotic inspired outfit comes in the form of lipstick and nail color (Kennebunkport by OPI, which is fitting since I live in Maine). I accessorized with my favorite necklace...a fitting nod to Independence Day!

Monday, July 9, 2012

Running Playlist

I'm training for my first 5k.  Let me say that I am NOT a runner but I guess since I am now running, I am, therefore, a runner!  I don't suppose I will ever become a lifelong runner, but I am training for a 5k for the sole purpose of proving to myself that I can do it...I like setting goals and reaching them.

The summer provides me lots of free time to work on self-improvement projects!  I've registered as a team captain to run in the Komen Race for the Cure in September so I'll also be raising money for a good cause, too.

Music provides me with so much motivation...I LOOOOVE to dance and have found that with the right songs, I'm pretty motivated to get out there and run just so I can groove along to 'my jams'!  I've put together a playlist on my iPod appropriately named "Run!" so I thought I'd share!

*Disclaimer: I like hip hop and many of these songs have lyrics that are not rated PG or even close to it!  You can download 'clean' versions for most of these titles if it suits you...just thought I'd throw that out there before I proceed!  I'm not proud of my love for inappropriate dance music...just sayin'.

My Running Playlist  (57 minutes)
1. Fantasy by Mariah Carey
2. Shots by LMFAO & Lil Jon
3. Wild Ones by Flo Rida ft. Sia
4. Low by Flo Rida ft. T. Pain
5. Welcome to the Jungle by Guns N' Roses
6. Bring Em Out by T.I.
7. Shake Ya Tailfeather by Nelly, P. Diddy and a bunch of other guys
8. Bangarang by Skrillex
9. Yeah! by Usher (my favorite dance song!)
10. In da Club by 50 Cent
11. Get Low by Lil Jon, East Side Boyz, and Yin Yang Twins
12. Hypnotize by Notorious B.I.G.
13. Party Rock Anthem by LMFAO
14. OMG by Usher featuring will.i.am

Jog.Fm is a great site to use if you're interested in building your own playlist for walking, running, biking or whatever activity it is that suits you!  I'm on week three of my eight week running program...I'll keep you posted!

Linking up to...

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Mirror Mirror On the Wall

Despite today's high humidity levels here in Maine, I tackled a little spray paint project to transform a mirror for my entryway space. I've had this solid wood, good-quality mirror since I was in high school but it has been sitting in my basement since moving in a year ago.

The carved 'scrolls' add a fun detail!  It's pretty as is but I wanted to add a pop of color to make it a bit more modern.  Oh and there's a sneak peek at the chevron carpet that just arrived! Will write about that in another post!

I found a $25 runner at Marshalls that has become the jumping off point on which to base the colors in the entryway.  I chose spray paint to coordinate with this runner...

And here's the transformation in the 'drop zone' nook:

When I moved in I just sort of placed a small mirror, some frames, and a dish for keys very haphazardly with the intent to eventually add character to the space. Changing out the mirror and spray painting one of the frames a peacock blue, added some much needed color.

I'm not convinced that the blue on the mirror is the perfect shade, so I might keep looking and I can always spray paint it again if I find something I like better!  But for now, it adds fun to the space I see everyday as I enter and exit the house!

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

15 Day Challenge: Days 1-4

I've decided it would be fun for you readers out there to get to know me a little bit more, considering most of my posts are pretty impersonal, so I'm linking up to the 15 Day Challenge at Life of Love.  I'm joining a little late, so I'll write the first four posts today!

Day 1: List 15 Fun Facts About Yourself
1. I usually read magazines from back to front.

2. I've been to Europe 4 times (backpacking '05, Switzerland in '07, Italy & Greece in '08, British Isles in 2010)

3. If I could have one superpower it would be the ability to eat all the donuts I wanted without any health consequences.

4. I don't have a middle name...my first name is Kelly-Anne (I think this is the first time I've used my actual name on this blog)...my mom added the hyphen shortly after I was born.

5. I'm half Canadian (French Canadian, Mom's from Montreal).

6. I've had Lasik eye surgery and it was pretty life changing!

7. Donald Trump once walked passed me while I was in the lobby of Trump Towers in NYC!

8. Alcohol and breath mints make me sneeze!

9. I've owned three properties in five years and I'm only 31!

10. I had a cat growing up who spontaneously taught himself to use the toilet.

11. I was taught how to shoot an handgun by a Colonel in the Swiss Army (which was the only time in my life that I've shot a gun).

12. My three best friends from high school are all named Katie! (actually, Katie, Katie, and Katy)! To avoid confusion, we just refer to each of them by their last names!

13. The only time I ever cheated in school was pretending to run the mile in gym class but actually only running 3 laps around the track, instead of 4.  OH! the humanity! (it feels good to get that out there) As repentance, I'm currently training for a 5k.

14. I always set my alarm for some obscure time, like "5:07am" instead of "5:00" or "5:15". It's currently set at "6:07am" because I had summer school and got to sleep in an hour later than during the school year.

15. My favorite word of all time is COCONUT and my least favorite word is moist...eww!

Bonus: I won $10,000 on a scratch ticket that was put in my Christmas stocking by my step-father a few years ago! In case you're wondering, I paid my car off and some other bills (boo for being responsible!)

Day 2: Write a Six Word Memior

She persevered with hope and dedication.

Day 3: Tell Us About an Article of Clothing You're Attached to

My faculty graduation robe.  It's weird looking, with funky sleeves that indicate I've earned my Master's degree and has a complicated 'hood' that hangs down the back, however, it is a nice tradition that the faculty wear these robes as we march into graduation before the seniors.

I'm on the left...you can't really see the details of the robe, but you get the idea!

I always feel special, distinguished, and proud when I wear this robe (and kind of like an extra in a Harry Potter film!). And now that I'm leaving this school at which I have dedicated the last 8 years of my life, I will keep this robe as a reminder of this special place (and maybe to use as part of a Halloween costume)!

Day 4: What is your favorite childhood memory?

I grew up in a really awesome neighborhood with lots of kids my age, so my childhood is FILLED with fun memories.  We were always outside playing, running around, and using our imaginations.  I can only hope that one day if/when I have kids, they will be blessed with that kind of childhood!

Having said that, one of my favorite memories from childhood was when my mom allowed me to have a pool party in July for my birthday! This might not sound too exciting, but my birthday is actually December 20th, which means my parties were usually ruined by snow storms or people's holiday party plans. So, when Mom allowed me to celebrate my birthday in July, I was pumped!!  It's just way more fun having a summer party...we swam, ran around my backyard, basked in the warmth of the sun...oh and I got THIS:

OK, not this exact set, but I did get a coconut-scented, grass-skirt wearing Malibu Barbie doll as a gift, which I'm fairly certain wouldn't have happened at any of my December birthday parties!  Best...birthday....ever!

Life of Love

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Independence Day

As a US History teacher, it may not be surprising that my favorite holiday is Independence Day! Although I do love the historical significance behind the holiday, I really love it because it's all about spending time with family and friends in a really low-key way, whilst enjoying wonderful summer weather (hopefully) and spectacular fireworks!  No present shopping or gift giving necessary!  Just a whole lotta fun!

The current view from my front porch...

Today was the last day of summer school, which has kept me busy, so I don't really feel like doing anything crazy this year, plus, I've been blessed with a really delightful head cold just as summer is getting started!  I'll be hanging around the house during the day then hitting up a friend's BBQ in the afternoon, followed by fireworks downtown. Fun, but low key!

Here's some more Red, White, and Blue inspiration! 
Click on each image to go to the original source...

It's me!! Skirt from LL Bean!

And a MUST HAVE 4th of July staple in my family...

Happy Independence Day to you and yours!

Linking up to...