Eat: 2016 Cookie Swap

I thought really hard about hosting a cookie swap this year as I’ve been extremely swamped with so much going on at work, with the wedding, I am back in school etc. I decided not to forego it this year because I really do love doing it and so do all of my friends. Compared to last year, this one was pretty small but I am quite happy with the results – especially because it did not take me as much work as it has in the past.

Generally, I send an email out (with a fancy graphic/digital card) to a select group of friends to ask who wants to participate, what dates work etc. After this, I share a google doc with a form for everyone to fill in what they will be making so that we don’t have duplicate. I also have them email me their recipes so I can create a book for them to go home with. This year I did none of that, save for the email to ask who would be able to make it. The best way to organize a cookie swap usually involves all these steps but it had to be quick this time! I did not even email everyone until really late in the month and asked if they could attend within two given dates. Although not everyone could make it because of this, I had a great time, ate lots of sweets and still got plenty of cookies to share.

I took lots of photos for some great Cookie Swap inspiration. This year, I got the tags and labels from Confetti Sunshine’s  printable and customized them to work with what I needed.

Let me know what you think!


Eat: The bottomless pit of Foodie videos

You know that moment where you get onto YouTube to watch one tutorial on how to do just one quick thing but end up in the black hole of video-watching? Well that’s me, all. the. time. I can’t stop watching videos or going through an entire channel if I come across awesome food videos.
Watching food videos mesmerizes me, I get all these ideas of all the possibilities of what I can make, what amazing dinners I could have and I just automatically imagine myself calmly chopping away in the kitchen with a beautiful dinner setup, awaiting my guests as I plate immaculate looking dishes. I almost immediately I start making a list of every ingredient and utensil used in the video and take note the garnishes and plating style. Even as I read this, I feel like Becky Bloomwood from Shopaholic – like that time she went all nuts buying dishes, utensils, sauces and spices to make a fab dinner to save money but ended up being unable to cook and spent more money than she would have if she just continued to buy food instead! Call me crazy, but I am still aiming to do this pretty often as soon as I move into my new place. I hope I can cook alright!
So back to where I was – Back on YouTube, I was browsing away until I saw an ad on my page for the PC (President’s Choice) Insider’s Collection videos. I love PC products – especially the black label of higher end products. They only further my imagination of cooking extravagant meals for dinner parties. I almost instantly wanted drive down the street to my local Loblaw store, hit up the shelves and come home with potential in a shopping bag. 
It’s not like I can’t cook – I just don’t know if I tend to go overboard on my planning phase and realize too late that I have aimed too high….(most of the time that’s the case). But if you know me well enough, then you know I love throwing dinner parties, hosting friends and entertaining. This stuff was made for me and I don’t think I’ll ever get out of that habit!
My next thing is to attempt some of the dishes I saw on the PC YouTube channel. You are also welcome to pretend that my dinners will look exactly like these! Here are some of my favorite ones that I hope to recreate!
 Let me know what you think you would try making from these videos.