my sister’s bridal shower…

As Matron of Honour, I helped to plan and co-host a surprise bridal shower for my sister a few weekends ago in Montreal.

Bridal Shower

My sister has said numerous times that she didn’t want a bachelorette (which is happening, don’t worry!) and instead wanted a low key tea party with her closest friends and family. Inspired by the tea party theme, we worked with Alvaro at Anis et Marjolaine to create a perfect afternoon.

Luckily my Mom and Grandmother have an amazing collection of vintage tea sets that really helped the theme shine through. Because the interior of the restaurant is a bold yellow color, I stuck with red and yellow roses with baby’s breath. I then stacked different china pattern combinations in the center of each table.

Bridal Shower

We wanted to give our guests something personal as a thank you for coming to celebrate our bride to be. We baked twenty dozen Rosemary Butter Cookies, paired them with different teas, packaged and wrapped them to match the rest of our decor. It was a fun project to do with my Mom as we seldom get that one on one time together. We couldn’t be happier with how they turned out.
Bridal Shower | Rosemary Butter CookiesSince this was the first bridal shower I had planned or attended I had to do some research on the many games and rituals. Instead of giving out gift cards as prizes, we went on a little shopping spree for fun home decor items. Guests were so excited to win the prizes and it got really competitive!

Bridal Shower

We spaced the games out between passed hor d’oeuvres. When guests were first arriving, we started with the ‘How Old is She’ game. It was an easy one to have them complete whilst they were mingling and settling in. There were recipe cards at each place setting to be filled out with advice for a happy marriage. We also played the purse game (points are given for specific items in your purse), the almost newly wed game and had a toilet paper wedding dress contest.*
Bridal Shower Montreal

In between games, the groom to be showed up to shower his future bride with flowers. It was such a sweet surprise and I loved the look on her face.
Bridal Shower | cocktail

It was really important for us to have everyone interacting with each other even if they weren’t at the same table so the small bites worked great since they were easy to walk around with. Alvaro understood our vision of the afternoon and executed dishes that were complementary and light. Favourites of the afternoon were the chicken puff pastries, proscuitto + fig wraps and the salmon tartare. Also, no bridal shower is complete without a mimosa bar! In addition to classic orange juice, we added grapefruit and cranberry to change things up.

Bridal Shower | Mimosa Bar

Our bride-to-be was really happy with the surprise bridal shower which meant everything. A big thank you to my Mom and sister Halysha for all of the planning we did together. Countdown to the wedding in Mexico is on!

*I will have a separate post on the bridal shower activities. I had to scour the web to find the ones we did and think a single post summarizing them will help others planning bridal showers.*

banh mi at irving café and deli…

We recently bought a car so I am now free to roam further neighborhoods in San Francisco without having to pay for a Zipcar! Since I have a few days off this week, I ventured out to the Outer Sunset to try what has been dubbed the best banh mi sandwich in the city. Irving Café and Deli is a small store front on Irving Street between 22nd and 23rd Avenue specializing in Vietnamese sandwiches and cold drinks.
banh mi sandwich | Irving Cafe and Deli, San Francisco banh mi sandwich | Irving Cafe and Deli, San Francisco

There was a small line inside but nothing compared to lunch time at Saigon Sandwiches in the Tenderloin. I went with a standard combination pork banh mi. There was no space to sit, so I took my sandwich and sat on the sidewalk beside my car. The weather has been so gorgeous in San Francisco that even the Outer Sunset has t-shirt weather.
banh mi sandwich | Irving Cafe and Deli, San Franciscobanh mi sandwich | Irving Cafe and Deli, San Francisco

It had everything that a banh mi should have- pickled vegetable, paté, tons of cilantro, fresh baguette, but I didn’t feel like it deserved the ‘best of’ title because there was nothing special or different about it. Also at $4 it is kind of steep for a Vietnamese sandwich.
banh mi sandwich | Irving Cafe and Deli, San FranciscoAfter polishing off my banh mi, I took advantage of the nice weather and headed towards Ocean Beach. On any normal day, Ocean Beach is foggy and freezing but today it was perfect.
Ocean Beach, SFIrving Café and Deli
146 Irving St, San Francisco, CA 94122

chelsea market, ny…

Having lunch at Chelsea Market is one of my favorite things to do in New York. The quality and choice of food is hard to beat and I love the old charm of the building.
Chelsea Market, NYC

Even though I had lobster the evening before at Morimoto, I was still craving more seafood so we headed to The Lobster Place. Anything you could want seafood wise is there, including a full oyster bar and sushi counter. The Lobster Place Chelsea Market, NYC The Lobster Place Chelsea Market, NYC The Lobster Place Chelsea Market, NYC

After walking through and deciding we wanted everything, we settled for a 2-lb fresh steamed lobster and a large serving of New England Clam Chowder to share. Seating is tight at The Lobster Place but tables free up quickly. We got pretty lucky and only had to wait 2 minutes.The Lobster Place Chelsea Market, NYC The Lobster Place Chelsea Market, NYC The Lobster Place Chelsea Market, NYCChelsea Market reminds me a lot of the Ferry Building in San Francisco. It’s such a mix of tourists and business lunches. There were lots of people pushing through because they were on the clock, whilst others lazily roamed the market snapping pictures and dipping in and out of shops. We were the latter.
Chelsea Market, NYChelsea Market, NY Chelsea Market, NYChelsea Market
75 9th Avenue (Between 15th and 16th Streets), New York, NY 10011


renegade craft fair…

This past Sunday, I went to the Summer Renegade Craft Fair at Fort Mason.
renegade craft fair, san francisco

The pavilion had a great vibe, vendors were friendly and live music filled the room. I only had an hour to run around but found great new (to me) illustrators and makers.
renegade craft fair, san franciscoGenevieve Santos specializes in artwork and crafts for kids. I loved the playfulness of her illustrations. She is booked up until January on commissioned work and judging by her style I can see why!

Renegade Craft Fair, San Francisco

I never know the real lyrics to songs and my husband always feels the need to correct me. So when I saw these ‘Mistaken Lyric’ coasters by MakeATX they genuinely spoke to me. One of my favorites was Elton John’s Tiny Dancer ‘Hold me closer Tony Danza’.

Renegade Craft Fair, San FranciscoRecycled book journals? Genius! Not only do they have original vintage covers but some of the original pages and included inside the journal.

A few trends were clear throughout the fair. Geometric shaped jewelry pendants are still very much in fashion. Anything chevron or triangular with pops of metallic and neon were popular. Map/Geography prints were everywhere- neighborhood maps, public transit, state cut outs. And people still love pugs and cats… on everything.

lesson learned…

I recently lost my iPhone and with it went hundreds of pictures I had not uploaded to iCloud and Dropbox. I’m sad to have lost so many memories of 2013 and am clinging to the few Instagrams and random uploads I have.


I’m now setting up IFTTT and automating the process for all of my pictures to be uploaded in two different spots to make sure this doesn’t happen again. I definitely encourage all of you to do the same. IFTTT is quick to set up and very easy to use.

It’s a hard lesson to be learned for a nostalgic person like me but a lesson none the less.