CONTEST | The Green Living Show, Canada’s Largest Eco-Healthy Living Show

What exactly is The Green Living Show, Canada’s largest eco-healthy living show, all about?

green living show 2018

Green Living strives to provide consumers with information about companies and organizations making the world a greener place.

Sure, sounds good – right? Of course it does! Creating a greener world is something that everyone should strive to work towards.

Whether you’re a superstar green living human already, or want to learn more – I highly suggested heading out to The Green Living Show!

…if not anything other than the delicious food!

green living show 2018

Join 20 chefs, breweries, cideries, and wineries in the Delicious Local Food & Drink Pavilion. Celebrate the diversity and cultural traditions the make up Canada’s food landscape.

Green living show 2018 maple butter ale

Using local and sustainably sourced Ontario ingredients, chefs from Canada and around the world will showcase old family recipes and favourite dishes that best reflect their heritage.

Join us as we applaud the community, vibrancy, and diversity of our country through the many tastes and smells of its global kitchens.

FUN FACT: The chefs at The Green Living Show will not only cook with local Ontario produce, they will also be using 300lbs of donated misshaped organic veggies from Pfenning’s Farms that didn’t make it to the grocery store.

green living show 2018

credit: greenlivingshow.ca

With the upcoming legalization of cannabis, the discussion on integrating it into your health regime and how it can be used as medication has continued to evolve.

At The Green Living Show, you can check out the Aurora Cannabis educational feature exhibit, and the Cannaspace stage to get all of your questions answered.

The Green Living Show Details

Location
Metro Toronto Convention Centre, North Building
255 Front Street West, Toronto, ON M5V 2W6

2018 Show hours
Friday, April 6: 12:00pm – 9:00pm
Saturday, April 7: 10:00am – 8:00pm
Sunday, April 8: 10:00am – 6:00pm

Buy Tickets Now!

Green Living Show 2018 tickets

I want to give you a chance to check out the Green Living Show! Enter below to win one of 8 pairs of general admission tickets to the Green Living Show.

Please note: Winner will have to attend the show to pickup their tickets!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Three Words. Five Claps. Thank You, Doc.

Guest post written by Mike.

As a Torontonian and a lover of baseball, the Blue Jays hold a very special place in my heart. The smell of hot dogs and popcorn at the concessions, the sounds of cheers ringing in the stands, smiling with a shit-eating grin every time I see the blue birds take the field, the high fives I feel with such enthusiasm from the best fans in the world and the wonderful taste of an ice…. cold…(stadium-priced) Budweiser I make sure to have in hand before I take my seat. I feel it all.

4 words. Five claps. Let’s go Blue Jays.

I use every bit of my five senses to enjoy the game and team that I love so much.

I did not grow up playing baseball, although my pops and both my brothers played. I watched my brothers play baseball and I threw the ball around with my pops. It was fun, but it wasn’t a passion of mine.

I never had a loyalty to my city growing up, I just didn’t. I didn’t understand it. I knew what I liked and that was that. (One may say I was a bit stubborn) I wasn’t even a Blue Jays fan growing up. (If you know me now, I know you’ll find that hard to believe – but it’s true.) I was an Oakland A’s fan. Being an 80’s baby I may have jumped on a bunch of bandwagons, and those bash brothers were easy to love.

I just didn’t understand the whole “city pride” thing. It was something I wouldn’t understand until I was introduced to Doc.

We have seen so many talented players, players with potential, and just players with a God given, natural ability play for the Blue Jays over the years. MVPs, Cy Young winners, silver sluggers, gold glovers, you name it, we’ve seen it. Oh, and let’s not forget about those back to back world championships! Who could forget those? We’ve really had it all here in this beautiful city.

We even had Doc.

Mike Playing Baseball

Fast forward to 2003. I was asked by a couple buddies to join their softball team. I obliged thinking it would be a fun excuse to hang out with my friends. And then I played, and well – I wasn’t half bad. I was actually good, one of the better players.

Coincidentally, 2003 was also the year that Doc won his first Cy Young award and the year I really started to fall in love with the sport.

This time, as a fan of the hometown Toronto Blue Jays.

It only took me 20 years to get it right, eh?

I mean technicallyyyyyyyyy, there were only 2 or 3 seasons as an A’s fan. The years 1992-1993 really confused me. I was happy, but I wasn’t happy. Then the strike of ‘94 happened and I was out of it for a bit. Though, the New York Rangers and San Francisco 49ers both won championships in ‘94. So, that made me a happy little bitch. I told you about my jumping on bandwagons back then, didn’t I?

Doc finished the 2003 season with a record of 22-7. Let that sink in for a second.

His emotionless face after an inning ending strikeout, his cutter that made opponents look silly, his masterful delivery, and his sheer dominance on the mound made me appreciate something I never seemed to notice before.

It was like art. Every time he would pitch, in my opinion, it would be like watching Picasso paint or Michelangelo sculpt.

He was special to this city. He was special to me.

How could anyone not fall in love with a guy like Doc? Let’s be honest – the Blue Jays were predominantly a losing team in the ‘00’s. Once Carlos Delgado left, they were a tough team to watch. But, I knew that every five days between the years 2002 and 2009 there was a reason to watch. There was good chance we would get the win. Because of Doc.

Mike at a Blue Jays Game

I was at his final start at home in a Jays uniform on September 25, 2009. The dome was pretty empty, the Jays were mathematically eliminated. Halladay pitched a complete game shutout (like he had done before so many times) and he walked off the field to a well-deserved standing ovation.

Listen, I was at the infamous “bat flip game” of 2015, but this – seeing Doc’s last game in a Jays uniform…seeing him walk off to a standing O, this is still the most special moment I have experienced at the ballpark.

We all (Jays fans) knew that he would be traded in the off-season. We all came to accept it. We were fine with it, he was our companion that we just couldn’t provide for anymore. He wanted a chance at more, and we wanted him to have that chance. I loved him as a Blue Jay, but I came to love and respect him as baseball player. Period.

Doc took out a full page ad in the Toronto Sun to thank the city of Toronto for everything we had done for him. Truthfully, it should’ve been the city of Toronto taking out an ad to thank him.

If I had to pick one word to describe Roy Halladay, it’s easy – I would pick: Class.

When I heard that Doc was (finally) being inducted into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame – I was ecstatic. I thought, finally a more intimate way to show my love and support for the guy. Just being that close to him and maybe catching a smile and hopefully him being able to see my smile, it was a day I was truly looking forward to.

Scene: June 24, 2017, approximately 9am.

I woke up that morning overly happy and excited. Today was the day of the induction. It took me an hour to pick out which of my many, many Blue Jays caps I was going to wear to match to my black “Doc” jersey. I remember looking in the mirror before we left, seeing Jenn finish getting ready, and telling her, “today will be a special day!”

Jenn and the City and Mike at Blue Jays Home Opener

Fifteen minutes before Jenn and I got to St. Mary’s for the induction, we were involved in a pretty serious car accident. In the middle of an intersection, a car came speeding towards us and clipped the front end. Our car spun out into the middle of the intersection, the other into a ditch. Hearts pounding, minds racing – panic mode. Thankfully all parties were ok. Shaken up, but overall – ok. The cars, not so much…both were totaled. (The paramedics, firefighters and OPP officers in Perth county were top notch.)

In that moment, my excitement for the day turned to fear. My top priority was no longer seeing Doc be inducted, not even the status of my car…all that mattered was Jenn. I looked over and saw her being attended to on the side of the road. The volunteer firefighters holding her still as to not move her neck. I raced over to be by her side, wiping the tears as they fell down her cheek…kneeling beside her, I took her hand and for the first time, told her that I loved her.

We obviously didn’t make it to the induction ceremony. I would cheer myself up by telling myself that I would go to Cooperstown to watch his induction ceremony at the Baseball Hall of Fame there.

HOF class of 2019? Fingers crossed.

I remember being at work on the morning of November 7, 2017. I remember getting a call from my mom, saying there had been a plane crash in the Gulf of Mexico and that I may want to sit down. My mom told me that “it’s unknown who was in the plane, but the plane belonged to Roy Halladay.” I fought back tears as my heart started beating rapidly, I took an early lunch that day, I sat down and glued myself to Twitter for updates. I couldn’t eat, I couldn’t really speak to anyone. I felt like a child admitting to my colleagues why I was so distraught. I felt like no one would understand.

I didn’t speak for the rest of the day. I was in shock. I couldn’t believe that the life of my hero, Roy ‘Doc’ Halladay, had been tragically lost that day.

I never had the chance to show my appreciation for what he did for this city, the Blue Jays, and baseball as a sport. I never had the chance to thank him for making me fall in love with this beautiful game. I never had the chance to cheer for him one last time as he was inducted.

He deserved that from me as I appreciate everything that he did for my life. He was and always will be a hero and an inspiration to me.

As soon as I heard the Blue Jays were doing a tribute to him on Opening Day this year, I knew I had to be there. This is my chance to say thank you. This is my chance to say goodbye.

3 words. Five claps. THANK YOU DOC.

The Night The Bitter Cold Air Was A Wake Up Call

It was a windy Thursday night. The kind of wind that hurts your face. I could feel it as I rushed along Queen St West, pivoting around the crowds of people. The sun that was shining throughout the day was false advertising of warmer weather. It was definitely still winter in the city, and much like many others, I was feeling “the blues.”

But, my “blues” were anything but, and I knew it

The anxiety and depression I have been battling for as long as I could remember had taken over. The boogeyman in my head had tightened his grip over my thoughts and actions

I needed to break free.

Just like any other day – my mind was racing. How many times have I walked down this street before? How many times had I rushed through the crowds to get to an event that I was running late for? Remembering the times where within the 7 days of the week, I was out at likely 16 events over the course of 6 days. Remembering how easy it all seemed back then.

Well, how easy I made it seem. There was a lot of pretending everything was ok when in actuality – it was not.

…it was exhausting

Things were quite different now, though. I moved in (north of Bloor St. and if you are from Toronto – you’ll understand why this matters) with Mike and now it would take a whole lot more convincing to get me out and about

At first, I would blame my lack of presence at events on “exclusivity.” Which was, in fact, part of it. I didn’t WANT to be everywhere any more. But in all actuality – it was more so my anxiety. I COULDN’T be everywhere anymore

The anxiety that would come from going out was overwhelming. It wasn’t even just being out anymore. The thought of going out starting inducing panic attacks. I can’t tell you how many times I was on my way out when the fear and panic would take over, so much so that I’d either tell my uber to turn around or I’d have to get off of the public transit because it felt as though I was going to be sick

“Take a deep breath, Jenn. It’s going to be ok,” I mumbled to myself as I hopped over the streetcar track – narrowly missing getting my heel stuck.

I secluded myself. I isolated myself from people and places and things. I would stay home, and as I would scroll through my feeds, I would feel a sudden pang of FOMO. I’d see everyone out there with the smiles and the cocktails and the laughter and I would feel as though I was missing out. But that feeling only lasted a moment…then the overwhelming sense of relief would take over.

I knew that by isolating myself though, that I was actually doing more harm than good. I needed to make changes. I needed to feel better. I needed to be the best version of myself, for me and those around me.

So, what changes did I have to make?

I knew I had to start eating better. I knew that my steady diet of wine and chicken fingers and pizza was no bueno. I mean, it was delicious – but I knew I needed more.

I knew I had to start working out again. I knew that I needed to get those feel-good endorphins flowing. The hardest part of going to the gym is LITERALLY going to the gym, so I knew I had to get over that hurdle.

I knew I had to reconnect with some friends, and distance myself from some others. I knew that I had to be selfish and put my needs first and remove some toxicness from my life. I knew that I had to hope that it wasn’t too late with some people and that they would be understanding of my isolation.

I knew I had to start saying yes again. I knew I had to push myself out of my comfort zone and start saying yes to events and plans again. I knew that getting out there again – socializing as opposed to simply scrolling my feeds, was a good idea

So, I started making some small changes. I started meal prepping my lunches. I launched a motivational month with some followers where we encouraged each other daily. I started going to sleep earlier, and leaving my phone on the bedside table as opposed to scrolling in bed. I started getting up earlier and going to the gym. Those early morning feel good endorphins became EvErYtHiNg to me. They’re amazing!

And I even started saying yes to events and plans again.

“Take a deep breath, Jenn. It’s going to be ok,” I said to myself as I took the 15-second elevator (which felt more like an hour) ride up to the event space.

I had RSVP’d yes to this particular event, and gone solo. Double whammy. I thought that by coming solo I could plot my quick escape, if need be.

As I reached for a glass of wine from the waiter, I caught sight of a grin being shot my way that so big it lit the room and was greeted with a hug so heartfelt I immediately started to feel at ease.

“See, a familiar face. You’re good, Jenn.” I thought to myself as I saw Casie approaching.

The distraction of our conversation helped briefly ease my anxiety. From talking about recent travel to our outfits to the industry…and everything in between – the distraction made the whole situation started to become more manageable.

Distractions are great, until they’re gone – am I right?

Now that my anxiety was easing off, I was able to focus and listen to the amazing panel. Which was great because it became motivation. Hearing the panelists stories, and those from the people in the audience who decided to speak up or ask questions – was that extra butt kick of motivation I needed to make more changes.

I left the event and decided to grab a cocktail on my own. I needed to decompress after the whole evening, and just wanted to gather my thoughts a bit.

It was only after the event that it really hit me how bad my anxiety was throughout the night. And really, how much my anxiety had gotten out of hand and had taken over. As I sipped my cocktail, I knew what I had to do.

I walked outside, and as the bitter cold air smacked my face like the wakeup call I so desperately needed, I made my first therapy appointment.

What I Devour | The Best Chicken Parm Has Been Found At North York’s Hidden Gem – La Traviata

Have you ever had one of those meals at a restaurant where every single thing was delicious. I mean, like each thing you put in your mouth was better than the last?

…get your mind out of the gutter, guys.

Anyways, I had that type of meal last Friday and holy smokes, I’m already counting down the days until Mike and I can go back to La Traviata for another date night.

The bruschetta was a “build it yourself” dish, which worked out perfectly because I like to control the amount of toppings on mine. (I’m not a fan of overflowing tomatoes ??‍♀️). The calamari was battered and fried to perfection. Then, when the mains came out – holy smokes. Honestly, I think this was the best chicken parm I have ever had…and I have had a lot of chicken parm.

la traviata

la traviata

The key to a good chicken parm, in my humble opinion, relies on a few factors.

  1. The chicken itself. It needs to be pounded out to an even thickness throughout. This will help with the cooking process, ensuring it’s cooked evenly.
  2. The breading. A good chicken parm will have a perfectly seasoned bread crumb breading that compliments the chicken and sauce and cheese.
  3. Which brings me to the cheese. Like I said – I’ve had my fair share of chicken parms in my life, and I’ve seen it all. I’ve seen a restaurant try to pull of a chicken parm using cheddar cheese. Excuse me while I dry heave. NO THANK YOU. Do it right, with mozzarella and parmesan, or don’t do it at all. Mmmkay?
  4. A good chicken parm will have enough sauce to ensure every bite gets a little bit of everything, but not too much sauce that it’s drowning and causing a soggy cutlet. Ain’t nobody got time for that.
  5. The sides are crucial too. I mean, if it’s a chicken parm sandwich – that’s a completely different story. Then the bread would play a huge factor. But serving chicken parm as your main means you have to have the right sides. Pasta is an obvious choice, and in my opinion – the right one.
  6. The breading. A good chicken parm will have a perfectly seasoned bread crumb breading that compliments the chicken and sauce and cheese.
  7. Which brings me to the cheese. Like I said – I’ve had my fair share of chicken parms in my life, and I’ve seen it all. I’ve seen a restaurant try to pull of a chicken parm using cheddar cheese. Excuse me while I dry heave. NO THANK YOU. Do it right, with mozzarella and parmesan, or don’t do it at all. Mmmkay?
  8. A good chicken parm will have enough sauce to ensure every bite gets a little bit of everything, but not too much sauce that it’s drowning and causing a soggy cutlet. Ain’t nobody got time for that.
  9. The sides are crucial too. I mean, if it’s a chicken parm sandwich – that’s a completely different story. Then the bread would play a huge factor. But serving chicken parm as your main means you have to have the right sides. Pasta is an obvious choice, and in my opinion – the right one.

la traviata

La Traviata knocks it out of the park on all counts. The chicken was the perfect portion, and the breading, cheese, and sauce were not only delicious – but evenly distributed meaning every bite got some of the ooey gooey deliciousness. The side of pasta was perfectly al dente and a savoury companion for the main event.

BRB – I’m drooling on my keyboard.

Now that we live midtown-ish, it takes a lot of effort to go downtown. So to find this amazing hidden gem only a 13 minute drive from our place is a god send! ??

So, if you’re ever up in North York – hit up La Traviata and thank me later. Even better – bring me with you!

La Traviata
416.635 8891
852 Wilson Avenue
North York, ON
M3K 1E5

To be 100% honest, Mike’s friend owns this restaurant – but none, I repeat none, of this is sponsored. I wasn’t asked to write this post. We paid for our dinner, and are eagerly planning our next visit.

PS: I HATE that my numbered list capped out at 9…I may come back and randomly add something to make it 10, because #ocd. 

So, You Forgot Valentine’s Day…Here’s An Easy Sugar Cookie Recipe To Save The Day

Ok, I get it. Valentine’s Day can sneak up on you. Or…you could just not give a shit about Valentine’s Day. If so – booo, because I looooove it!

Maybe you’re looking for gift idea that’s a little different?

Maybe you decided you wanted to make something yourself for this lovely day celebrating love.

Or heck, maybe you just want freshly baked cookies to devour.

…no judgement.

Easy Sugar Cookie Recipe

Whatever the reason – I’m here to help you with an easy sugar cookie recipe that will result in a large batch of deliciousness.

Seriously…this recipe makes like, between 45-50 cookies. ?

First and foremost, get your ingredients together. You’ll need:

  • 2 3/4 cups of all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1.5 cups white sugar
  • 1 cup of unsalted butter (softened)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Note: Be sure to get unsalted butter. I once accidentally used salted butter when making muffins and ummm, yeah…they were ridiculously salty and not so good. Oops. ??‍♀️

Easy Sugar Cookie Recipe

Got everything? Good. Now comes the fun part!

1. Crank up the heat. Get your oven preheated to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

2. Stir together the flour, baking powder, and baking soda in a small bowl and set it aside.

2a. Pour yourself a glass of wine. ?

3. In a large bowl, cream the softened butter and sugar together. (This is why is must be softened…I just let it sit out on the counter for awhile.)

Note: The first couple of times I made these cookies, I manually creamed it all together. This is a great way to get in an arm workout…but, if you have a stand mixer – you can use that and it’ll be a life saver!*

4. Once the butter and sugar are nicely creamed together, beat in the vanilla and egg. I encourage you to do this with Beat It, by Michael Jackson is playing very loudly.

Easy Sugar Cookie Recipe Hamilton Beach 7 Speed Orbital Stand Mixer

5. SLOWLY blend in the dry ingredients from Step 1. Add a little bit and blend….add a little bit more and blend again. Keep going until the whole bowl of dry ingredients has been incorporated.

6. Time to make the cookies! You can roll rounded teaspoonfuls of dough into balls, and place onto ungreased cookie sheets. If you want to be a little more festive and make them into heart shaped, or whatever tickles your fancy – go for it. If you want to use cookie cutters, I’d roll them into balls first then maybe mold them in the cutters. I don’t know for sure if this will work, but this way they’ll all be the same size and cook evenly. ??‍♀️

7. Throw (not literally) those bad boys into the over for between 8-10 minutes. It’ll vary depending on your oven, to be honest. I’ve made these MANY times, and after some trial and error (and one time even forgetting I had a batch in the oven, oops) – I found my happy spot was 9mins, 15seconds.

IMPORTANT: Be sure to let the cookies stand on the cookie sheet for two minutes before removing to cool on wire racks because they kinda finish cooking like that. When you take them out of the oven, you’re gonna be like, “Oh man – Jenn lied to me! These cookies are sooooo not done!” But be patient. Let them hang out another couple of minutes, then move them over to cool on wire racks. TRUST ME!

As they’re resting, can sprinkle some white sugar on top for an added little zing. I once even threw a couple chocolate chips on them and they turned out great too!

If you try these cookies out, be sure to share your results with me here or on social media! I mean, if you wanna send me some cookies too I won’t say no to that. ?

*shoutout to Hamilton Beach Canada for hooking me up with this amazing 7 Speed Orbital Stand Mixer. My belly, and my rested arms, thank y’all! It makes making these delicious cookies (among other recipes that you’ll just have to stay tuned for) a heck of a whole lot easier! Especially with the nonslip suction on the bottom so it stays put!

Happy New Year! Also – Benylin Isn’t That Bad.

jenn and the city happy new year

HAPPY NEW YEAR, MOFOS!

I hope that 2018 brings you nothing but happiness and success because you are amazing and you deserve the best.

Now, I know what you’re thinking, “JJ – you’ve done lost your damn mind! It’s February!”

RELAX.

Let’s be honest – I had a bit of a rough go in January. I’m not going to sit here and list off all the things that went wrong or brought stress my way. (Not again, at least. Ha.)

I will, however, tell you that I’m writing this post from home, sick as heck and on a mix of penicillin and Benylin…just like I have been all week. And basically all of January.

But you know what, I’ve decided to take control of my happiness.

So, once February 1st rolled around, I yelled “DO OVER!” to the universe and decided to start 2018 all over again.

What?? It’s my life, I can do as I please.

So, basically – all I’m saying is that it’s your life, and you have to decide to take control over your happiness. Have faith in the universe and good things will happen.

Also, this Benylin is actually starting to taste not bad…that’s probably not a good thing.

…I’m going back to bed. Ok, love you – bye.

Seems Like A Good Time For A Month Of Motivation!

jenn and the city Month Of Motivation

Hi everyone! Just your friendly neighbourhood blogger here with a fun idea for a month of motivation!

Time for some hard truth. I currently weigh the most I have ever weighed in my entire life. I get gassed just walking up the three flights of stairs to our apartment after walking Dusty. I am so uncomfortable in my own body – it’s ridiculous. And it’s my own fault. I choose to eat the pizza and wings and not workout nearly as much as I should… if at all.

I know it’s my fault, and I also know that I need to stop making excuses.

It’s time for change.

I don’t know about you, but when it comes to making healthier decisions – I need some motivation. I mean, sure – I’ll grudgingly choose a banana over the donut that I really want in the morning…but, come on – that’s not enough. I work better when I’m being held accountable for something, and a little motivation can go a long way!

jenn and the city health and fitness Month Of Motivation

I’ve teased about this on social media for a little while now, but it’s time to put the plan in action! It’s time for a month Of motivation! I’m going to be forming a little motivational group for the month of February, and who knows, if it goes well and you guys love it – maybe we’ll keep it going beyond that.

First, let me preface this whole thing by saying:

I AM IN NO WAY A FITNESS PROFESSIONAL

What I am though, is an eager and bubbly person who is excited to make some changes and start living a healthier, happier life. Because, in the end – that’s what matters most, right?

So, here’s the deal – every Monday morning for the month of February, I’ll be sending out a newsletter with tips and tricks from myself, and some of my more qualified friends in the health, fitness, and food world.

jenn and the city health and fitness Month Of Motivation

Whether you workout at home or in the gym – I’ll be sharing some tips from my ridiculously fit and healthy and beautiful friend Mia of Body Morphology.

Need a friendly reminder to drink that water? Need a gentle push to put down the candy bar and pick up that apple? I got you covered.

Stuck in a rut of bad food meal after meal? Crunched for time when making dinner so relying on the drive-thru far too often? Not for long!

Did you know that ginger may help reduce muscle pain and soreness? Did you know that reducing sugar can create a stable mood and energy levels? Get ready for more valuable info like this!

It’s ok to not always be ok, you know. Sometimes we all need a gentle reminder that we’re not alone in this crazy thing called life. I want to help with that.

Next step?

Easy – just sign up by via the form below, or by leaving a comment and get ready to get a little healthier and a whole lot happier!

If you have any suggestions, feel free to let me know in the form or the comments below too!

We’re all going to help each other – so if you’re comfortable, introduce yourself and let everyone know why your joining. If you’d rather remain anonymous – that’s cool too. Whatever works for you!

Now, who’s excited to get started on a month of motivation?!

When Life Hands You Lemons, You Make Lemonade…Unless You’re So Sick That You Can’t Drink Lemonade, Which In That Case – Just Stay In Bed For Days

jenn and the city

Well, hey there. How are YOU? I’m writing this post from bed, while under the covers and just ate for the first time in 48 hours…but more on that later.

If you follow me on Twitter and/or Instagram – you will know that I haven’t had the best of luck this week.

I went out for tacos and margaritas with an old friend on Thursday night. I was in a great mood because I had had an awesome day at work and was excited to catch up with an old friend…plus, I thought I looked super cute, so that always helps. (Judge me if you will.) After our catch up sesh, I decided to stop at the grocery store because I only ordered ONE taco at the restaurant. I know, I know – who am I!?!?

That was my first mistake…obviously.

So anyways, I went to the grocery store across the street with my brand new Google Pixel 2 XL in my hand (where it normally is <was>) feeling happy as could be; smile on my face as I perused the chip aisle. I had a hankering for good old fashioned All Dressed which was in display right at the front of the store, but I thought, “Hey, let’s see if anything else pops out at me in the aisle.”

Mistake number two.

While admiring some of my faves, like Cool Ranch Doritos and Cheetos, I placed my phone in my pocket to allow for more bags of chips in my arms. Logical, right? Anyways, shortly after – a couple struck up conversation with me.

Mistake number three.*

It was about the most random thing, and to be honest – I can’t even remember what our conversation was about now. But I do remember the young lady and I chatting, and her partner casually walking away, presumably to continue shopping. Little did I know it was actually a diversion and just like that – my phone was gone.

panic jenn and the city

I didn’t even realize my phone was gone until a few minutes after I left the store when I reached for it to text Mike. Then, full panic mode commenced. I retraced my steps. I reviewed video footage. I scoured through the streets in the rain, even spoke with security and an officer. There really wasn’t anything anyone could do. I could try calling my phone in hopes that whoever took it felt some sort of pity and decided to return it. (LOL!) So, when THAT didn’t happen – I had to contact Rogers and a) suspend my account, and b) blacklist the phone so if they did try using it – they wouldn’t be able to. Now those @$$#&%* not so nice people will simply have another paperweight.

On the plus side, one of the many great things about the Google Pixel XL 2 phone is that it automatically backed up ALL of my images and videos to Google Photos – so I didn’t lose any of those.

THANK GOODNESS. #TeamPixel for the win!

Anyways, it is what it is and like my friend said – it could have been a lot worse. Thankfully I wasn’t mugged or hurt in any way. I can replace a phone. I mean, of course it’s still frustrating AS SHIT and I was PISSED…but, I’m letting that anger go and am going to leave it in the hands of the Universe. She’ll do what she has to do and karma will take care of the rest.

Like I said at the beginning of this post – I haven’t eaten in 48+ hours. I’ve been TERRIBLY sick since Saturday morning. Like, stuck in bed, unable to eat or drink…feeling utterly weak and exhausted. At first I thought it was food poisoning, then I started to think it was the flu…now I have no idea. What I do know is that I couldn’t eat anything from about noon on Saturday until noon today (on Monday), at which point I ate a piece of toast. So, small victories?

*deepest of deep sighs*

On the plus side – I’ve had unlimited cuddles Dusty and Seven, so – yay!

Anywho – I just wanted to check in with y’all, and let you know what’s been going on. There’s been some other stuff which I’ll share about in time. I’m going to talk more about my mental health (duh) and what I’m going through, and I’m also going to launch a group motivation thing for February, where you’ll sign up and we’ll all support and motivate each other to be healthy and active. I’m in no way a certified professional, but I know we all could use a little extra motivation and encouragement! I’m also going to be in the kitchen even more thanks to my friends at Hamilton Beach, but that’ll have to wait until I have an appetite again. LOL

My blog is my diary, and while I share quite a bit on social (Twitter especially) – I miss writing here, so expect to see a lot more!

*I don’t actually consider being friendly and conversing a mistake. I am a friendly and nice person, and quite talkative. So I’m not going to change who I am because of this unfortunate incident. I refuse to let these people break me and make me think all people are as terrible as they are.

CONTEST | Tis The Season For Giving Back | Feeling Festive #WithRogers And Friends

Feeling Festive #WithRogers And Friends

The snow is falling, the trees are all lit, the carolers are caroling and Santa’s big day is quickly approaching!

Are you feeling festive yet?!

One of the sure-fire ways to get in the holiday spirit is by giving back. When you give back and share small acts of kindness – you’re actually giving back a lot more than you think. That random act of kindness could provide the smile someone needed that day. Your random act of kindness could inspire others around you, which will cause a ripple effect of kindness. And let’s face it – the world needs a little more kindness now more than ever.

What are some ways you can give back this holiday season?
  • There are so many families who struggle, especially during the holidays. Collect canned food to donate to a food bank to help feed those in need.
  • Clean up your closet and donate some old coats and dewaters to a homeless shelter. Take it up a notch and add in some (clean and new) socks. Socks are the most needed, but least donated item of clothing for the homeless.
  • Get in the kitchen and bake some sweet treats for your neighbours and coworkers to put a smile on their face.
  • Pick up the phone and call someone you haven’t spoken to in awhile. Check in on that friend who was having a rough go. The holidays are the perfect time to connect with loved ones, near and far – and #WithRogers, you can stay connected not only during the holidays, but all year long.
Now, I’ve got another way you can spread some holiday cheer this season and it’s a fun one!

Just in time for the holidays, I’ve partnered with my friends at Rogers, Samsung, Google, Huawei, and The Shopping Channel to give back and spread some festive cheer with some fun giveaways!

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#JJintheKitchen | Melted Snowmen Oreo Truffle Balls

Y’all know how much I’m loving being in the kitchen more nowadays, especially now that the holiday season is upon us! Whether I’m sharing recipes here on le blogaroo, or live in the moment on my Instagram Stories – I’m having a blast. So when I heard about a recipe for Melted Snowmen Oreo Balls – I just knew I had to try them out.

Not only are they ridiculously easy (like, seriously easy) – but they’re hella cute…and delicious! I made them over the weekend for a holiday party that Mike and I went to on Saturday night, and they were a huge hit! In fact, they were so good – I’m going to make them again tonight to bring to Hanukkah dinner with Mike’s family tomorrow night!

Melted Snowmen Oreo Truffle Balls

Melted Snowmen Oreo Truffle Balls

Ingredients

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