27 December 2012

Week 4: 24 Days of Tea



Another tea I have wanted to try for a while. While I don't know if it has any real health benefits I am enjoying drinking it. The first infusion was good but the second infusion was GREAT! So much smoother. I will probably end up purchasing some of this tea I have been wanted to add an oolong to my collection for a while now.

I wish I could comment on this tea but when I opened my door for the 23rd gogi pop was sitting there instead of Vanilla Oolong. I was very upset by this discovery because I wanted to try another oolong after having such success with The Skinny yesterday. Oh well.
What a perfect way to end the 24 days of tea. Santa's secret was nice and Christmassy. I loved the cute little candy canes in it. It had a slight minty fresh flavour to it and I really enjoyed it. I am really sad that the calendar has come to an end I have been enjoying trying all the different teas everyday and I now have a growing list of teas that I have to pick up from David's. Cannot wait to go on a mini (or not so mini) tea shopping spree.
What were your favourites from the calendar if you participated? And if you didn't what are your favourite teas? 
Jaclyn

24 December 2012

Merry Christmas!


Merry Christmas Everyone! Hope you have a wonderful holiday filled with fun, family and friends.

22 December 2012

24 Days of Tea: Week 3

 This was my first "plain" green tea from David's that I tried. I didn't love the smell but it tasted wonderful. It is apparently David's favourite tea and I can see why. I could drink this all day and never be tired of it. It reminded me of the green tea you get at sushi but much better. I will probably end up buying 100gs of this since I have been on the hunt for a good green tea. 
This lived up to its name for sure. It is minty all right. I am not the biggest mind fan. I don't hate it but I don't love it. I enjoyed trying it but its not something I would have again. If you love mint however this is the perfect tea for you. 
Yummy. I love black teas. (okay technically this is a white tea but its a black/white tea mix). I find I really like teas that are a mix of black and green or black and white. This did not disappoint. It was creamy and had a hint of coconut flavour to it. Probably one of my favourites so far. 
I'm not sure how I feel about this one. Its another that they always pull down for me to smell and I never buy. I tried it at a friends once and didn't like it at all. Plus I associated it with Forever Nuts which I wasn't a fan of at the time either. I am getting hints of hazelnut rather then walnut.
This tea is so pretty. It has red lip sprinkles and mini chocolate chips in it. I really enjoyed this one. I thought it was going to be slightly spicy because of the pink peppercorns but it wasn't. It has a slight non-overpowering chocolate flavour. It was a very smooth tea.
I have been wanted to try this tea for a while now since I love fruity teas. This one left me underwhelmed. The kiwi flavours didn't shine through as much as I hoped they would and the longer it cooled the more it just tasted like any old green tea.  I wonder if it would be better iced.
I had my hopes up that this would be the tea I opened on the 24th. I thought it would be perfect for Christmas Eve. Have sweet dreams before Santa came the next morning. But I guess I will be drinking something else before the big man arrives (there is one Christmas Tea left in the box hopefully thats it!).  I decided to have this with a little bit of honey since we had some local honey at home. It pretty much tasted like any other camomile tea nothing really special about it. I don't think I would purchase it but I wouldn't turn down a cup at night either.

This week: 5/7
Here are my reviews on week 1 and week 2 of the 24 Days of Tea. 

19 December 2012

Gift Guide: The Stylish Friend

Stylish


Slippers  - These slippers will keep any girl warm and stylish. They are super cute and cozy. Perfect way to cuddle up on a cold winters night. 
Candle - Who doesn't love the soft glow of a candle. Bath and Body Works has a bunch of different scents that will please even the pickiest person on your list.
Collar Necklace - Any fashionista would love this collared necklace. The perfect statement piece for that plain shirt or dress. 
Pride and Prejudice - How cute are these books? I think they would make the perfect accessory. 
Coin Purse - I love all of the cute sayings on these coin purses. Plus the pink really pops!
IPhone Case  - Kate Spade has a ton of cute iphone cases! Its the perfect way to dress up her iphone. 

18 December 2012

Gift Guide: For the Fitness Junkie

Fitness Junkie


Have a fitness lover to buy for on your list this year? Here a few suggestions of what to get them. 

Lululemon Bag - I have had my lulu bag for over 5 years now and it is still going strong. It can hold a ton of stuff and looks great in and out of the gym. Perfect for your stylish friend who enjoys working out. 

Water bottle - This water bottle is perfect for gym lovers and non gym lovers alike. It looks great and is easy to carry so you can always have water with you where ever you go. Plus reusable water bottles help to save the planet. 

Nike Runners - These running shoes are stylish and functional. Nike has a great range of shoes for any fitness level. I love all of the bright colours that they come in. 

Garmin - Know someone who is a tech-y and crazy about running? This is the perfect gift for them. It tracks your runs so you can see all of the your stats and routes. It helps keep track of and improve your training. 

Ipod Shuffle - The perfect running companion. This mini ipod clips on so its hands free and you are ready to hit the road for a jog. It comes in a variety of colours as well! 


15 December 2012

24 Days of Tea: Week 2

 I have been wanting to try David's organic breakfast for a while now. I love black teas and I am often looking for something that is not flavoured. Personally I found it tasted like any english breakfast tea and was hoping it would be a bit smoother. I don't think that this will be replacing my favourite, Cream Earl Grey, as my everyday tea but I still enjoyed it. 
I was really excited to see that it was a green tea. It's about time. I was disappointed when I turned it over to see that it was hot lips. I have sampled this in store before and I did not like it. Hot is right. It is supposed to taste like cinnamon hears which I am not a huge fan of.
This is one of the teas I was most excited to try. I have only read about it on steepster and wasn't sure if it would actually work. The reviews were also mixed on this one about its taste so I have always been a little hesitant to try. I hated the smell of it. It was awful. I think it was the berries but I am not sure. I didn't mind the taste. It started to grow on me. The longer I let it sit and cool the better it got. I enjoyed it room temperature.  It also helped to settle my stomach so I think it is something I would purchase. It would probably make for a great after dinner tea. 
Its lovely weather for a sleigh ride together with you.... I had this song stuck in my head ALL day, from the moment I opened the calendar and saw what tea it was. I was so excited to see a Christmas tea (fitting as we are 2 weeks from Christmas at this point).  I really enjoyed this tea. My favourite this week so far.  It just tasted like Christmas should. It was stuffed full of yummy-ness. 
Okay so I know that this is one of David's Tea best sellers but I am not its biggest fan. Every time I go in they pull it off the shelf and I'm like yaaa but do you have something else. I tried it a long time ago and I really didn't enjoy it but I am giving it another chance. It smells great before you steep it and I love that there is apple in it. It kind of tastes like apple pie to me and I think I might be starting to like it. I am not loving the after taste of cinnamon (I think I am starting to sense a pattern of not liking cinnamon heavy teas).  
This tea lived up to its name. It was fruity and delicious. It was light on the taste but it would make the perfect afternoon or evening tea. I think this may be the rooibos I end up buying. 
This is my favourite herbal tea at David's. It is so delicious and fruity. I drank it iced every day this summer. It is the perfect iced tea but I also enjoy it hot. If you haven't tried this tea yet then you should. Probably one of my top five favourites at David's.

This week: 6/7 
To see week one click here

13 December 2012

Gift Guide: For the Tea Lover

tea lover

This Tea Pot is perfect for any tea lover. The beautiful gold design will go with any kitchen. It comes with a loose leaf tea strainer they will be ready to start brewing their favourite teas right away! 
This is the kettle of all kettles. Tea lovers will not be able to go back after using this. It provides the ultimate tea lover the option of boiling water at various heats perfect for all the different types of tea! 
This frother is perfect for those tea latte lovers. It is a quick way to froth milk and create delicious tea lattes at home.
How cute is this! A tea infuser shaped like a tea bag! Perfect stocking stuffer for the tea lover on your list. 
With an assortment of varieties it is hard to determine which David's Tea to purchase for your tea lover, I suggest either a gift set or one of their featured holiday flavours such as Santa's secret which has real tiny candy canes right in the tea! Very cute, festive and tasty! 
You cannot go wrong with a tea tin from Chapters. Not only do they look beautiful on a shelf but they are filled with wonderful teas that everyone will love! 

I hope this helps you figure out what to buy that tea lover on your list this holiday season! I know I would personally be thrilled with any one of these gifts!
Jaclyn 

12 December 2012

Gift Guide: The Cupcake Queen

Food Lover

- A Kitchen Aid Mixer is a must for any master baker. They look great on a kitchen counter and make creating master pieces that much easier. By far the most pricy on the list, but it will get the most love. 
-I love how cute this apron is. Perfect for keeping the chefs clothes clean while she bakes up a storm! 
- How cute is this for the holidays. I love the gingerbread man, but am not a huge fan of gingerbread cookies. This solves that problem
- These owl measuring cups are too cute! Sweet and practical. 
- This book is great alone or as an add on to one of the other gifts on the list. Perfect for sparking her cupcake creativity. 
-These cooking utensils would make any counter bright and cheerful! Even if she doesn't love to bake these are perfect to whip up anything quickly in the kitchen! 

Hope this gave you some ideas for the Cupcake Queen on your list! 
Jaclyn

8 December 2012

24 Days of Tea: Week 1

I started David's Tea's Advent Calendar this week and I am loving it so far! It is so much fun to try a new tea every day. I have quite the obsession with David's Tea and it has been fun trying some of their teas that I haven't been able to try yet. I have loved some and will probably go in a buy some more and others I don't think I will be having again, but they were all fun to try. Here is this weeks teas and my thoughts on each. 

This was day one of my 24daysoftea and boy did it start off right. Such a wonderful smelling tea. I loved how rich and creamy it tasted. I had it with milk and it was perfect for the cold winter morning and is something that I will consider buying more of. I can’t wait to try it iced and as a latte.
I was really excited to try this one. It had everything I love together in combination. Chocolate, raspberries and almonds. Which I basically eat all the time in ice cream form. But I was super disappointed with this tea. I got no raspberry flavour. It tasted almost smoky to me and something about the smell was just off. I will give it another try (because I have some left) since I do not want this combination to fail me. Perhaps I burnt it…
I am not sure how I felt about this tea. It was spicy for sure. Nothing special and probably not something I would pick up in the store but it was drinkable.

Wow! This has to be my favourite so far! (4 days in, so I guess that doesn’t mean much, but it is going to be hard to beat!) This stuff smells AMAZING! I am currently making a latte of it as we speak. So good. I had it with milk this morning and everyone kept asking me what I was drinking, it smelt that good. This is one to add to the list of to purchase. I have a feeling these 24daysoftea are going to be dangerous on my wallet.
 Day 5 was my favourite everyday tea. I love cream of earl grey. It is my usual morning tea and is one that I always have on hand. At first I was a little disappointed that this was the tea for the day because I have been enjoying trying new things but once I had my first sip of it, I realized how much I missed it. Plus having drank all those other teas made me appreciate what I love about this one. It became so everyday for me I almost stopped noticing how its creamy with a hint of vanilla. It was just what I needed. 
Day 6. Another black tea. Not that I am complaining. This was the tea that I was most excited to try. I have heard nothing but good things about it. It truly is beautiful. The glitter from the rock sugar and the gold from the golden balls dotted throughout. It just adds some sparkle to your day. I enjoyed the taste but it was nothing that made me swoon. I would drink this again and I would consider purchasing some. 
Wow, its hard to believe I am a week into this. I was excited to see that it was a rooibos this morning but I decided to wait and drink it later in the evening since it has no caffeine. I have never tried a desert rooibos before and I was very happy with this one. It wasn't as heavy or as sweet tasting as the black desert teas that David's has. It had just enough of a carmel hint. It was surprisingly different then most rooibos' that I have tried which were more woodsy tasting. All in all it was a good way to end the week. 


This weeks score: 5/7 


I cannot wait to see what this coming week brings! There are still a lot of teas left in the calendar that I am itching to try. 
Jaclyn

5 December 2012

Tea Latte


Just a quick hello today.
I am loving my 24 days of tea from David's Tea. Yesterday's tea was Salted Caramel and it was delicious! I had to make myself a tea latte with it. Perfection in a cup right here. 
Now I must get back to studying.

4 December 2012

Homesick


5 Ways to deal with being HOMESICK



  • Do something new - something you cant do at home
  • Exercise - distract your mind with something else
  • Watch your favourite movie
  • Call a friend or family member from home 
  • Make some tea and grab your journal 

The feeling of homesickness strikes at random times. For me its when I am in places that remind me the most of home. Going to the mall or the movies often bring on the biggest waves of homesickness for me.  Malls and movie theatres for the most part are very similar and they always remind me of the ones I frequent at home. One time I was at the movies with some friends from school and something in the movie reminded me of an inside joke with one of my friends from home and I turned to tell her and much to my surprise she wasn't there. I forgot for a second that I was away from home and in a whole other city because the theatre seemed so familiar to me.


There were times when I was surrounded by people but I never felt so alone. I was homesick for: the people who knew me best, my family and friends. The people who I had a history with. Those who could just take one look and know that something was wrong. But I realized that with friends from home we too once did not have a history. We too were just starting out. It takes time to build relationships and now I have people who really know me and who I feel comfortable around at University too.  Going away to University was one of the best decisions I ever made but it is a double edged sword. Now no matter where I am I am always missing someone or something. When I am home I miss my friends at University and my freedom. When I am at school I miss my family and friends at home.  The start of second year was the worst for me homesick wise. I was actually living on my own (well with a roommate) but not in Rez anymore. That for me was a HUGE adjustment, there were no longer people around all the time to distract me from my homesick feelings. I found ways to deal with my homesickness and still have a wonderful time in second year. This year it was nice to go back to school and see all of my friends and while I do sometimes get homesick still its not as bad as it was last year and I know that it will past. 

How do you deal with being homesick? 
- Jaclyn

1 December 2012

Let the count down begin...



It is officially December 1st! The count down for Christmas is on! I am super excited this year as I have  a David's Tea Advent Calendar. Basically a new tea to try everyday! And I can officially put up my Christmas decorations and start listening to Christmas music with out getting sick of it the week before Christmas. When I used to work retail by December 15th I was ready for the Christmas music to stop thankfully I will not be experiencing that this year!
What are your favourite things about the holidays?
Jaclyn

27 November 2012

Easy Cake Pops





I have an obsession with cake. Its even more delicious and cute as cake pops. I ended up making over 75 of these bad boys for my class and boy oh boy did I never want to see a Cake Pop again. I think I am slowly getting over that and I am planning on making a Cake Pop Tree for the holidays.  They are fairly easy to make (even easier if you have a stand mixer). 


Make your favourite cake (I made red velvet) and let it cool. Crumble cake with hands, Stand Mixer or food processor. 


Make your favourite icing that goes with your cake (cream cheese is my personal favourite). 


Add icing 1 cup at a time until cake sticks together and is easily rolled into balls. This depends on how much cake you make and how sweet you want your cake pops, I think I used about 2 1/2-3 cups of icing. This is where the stand mixer comes in handy. Its super easy to crumble the cake and mix in the icing with a stand mixer. 


Roll cake into balls and place on a baking sheet. Sick the balls in the fridge for a half hour to firm up. While they are in the fridge begin to melt your candy melts in your desired colour (I got mine at Bulk Barn).  I usually add a table spoon or so of vegetable oil to smooth out the chocolate and keep it in a cup for easy cake pop coverage. Remove cake pops from fridge and dip sticks into chocolate and place in the middle of the ball. Then place back in the fridge to firm up again. I suggest working in batches so you can alternate cake pops that are chilling and those you are working on. 


Dip balls into chocolate. Twirl. Tap off excess chocolate on side of cup and place pop either on baking sheet or the stick in a foam holder to dry. 


Enjoy!
Jaclyn

22 November 2012

Nutella Stuffed Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies


Not going to lie, these cookies were completely gone within a day and a half of me making them. They were amazingly ooey and gooey and oh so delicious. If the post title didn't already have your mouth watering then these next few photos will, unless you're weird and don't like Nutella or something. Not that I've ever met anyone who doesn't like Nutella. I grew up on the stuff. So why had I not thought of stuffing only my favourite cookie with it. Heaven. Pure Heaven.  The actual stuffing the cookies with Nutella part took a while to get the hang of, but the results were oh so worth it. And I now know why the rest of the blogging world is raving about brown butter. 


Just look at that chocolately goodness!  It has already been requested that I make more. 


I followed the recipe from Ambitious Kitchen

Notes: I found the dough hard to work with at first right out of the fridge.  I used my hands to warm up the dough ball I was working with, spread it thin and placed an indent with my thumb in the middle of the cookie  to fill with Nutella. 

Enjoy!
Jaclyn

13 November 2012

Balance

Trying to find a balance in life takes time, effort and experience. It is not something that comes easily to me and I know many people struggle with it. I believe that finding balance in life is something that we work at on a daily basis and it is always something that we will struggle with as we move into different stages of our lives.
We are all busy. We all have things like work, school, blogging, relationships, personal time, exercise and chores to deal with on a daily basis.  It becomes difficult to fit all of this in and give everything that is important to you and in life equal time and effort. There are days when school takes over completely and from morning till night its a grind of class and studying, only to have to do it all again the next day. Its exhausting. Having to find something to eat or the thought of having to do laundry is just too much and cannot be handled.
For me the most difficult thing is trying to prioritize what is most important for me to get done that day. Is everything as big of a deal as I make it out to be? What can I let slide, just this once?  I have been making an effort to try and achieve a more normal balance between friends, family, school and a general healthy lifestyle, but it is difficult. Trying to get everything into a day is not easy. I have come to realize that days are going to be off balance because different things are pressing on different days and while it might not be possible to achieve a daily balance of sorts achieving a balance overall is what  I would like to aim for.
There are weeks that are academically heavier then others with projects and exams. Those weeks I know that I might not be able to go out and see my friends as often as I would like and getting to the gym feels near impossible but I also have come to realize that taking the time out for yourself, taking that hour break makes all the difference in how productive you are.
I don't have the answer to how to find balance. It is something I am still working on and struggling with everyday. I think half the battle is recognizing that you want a balanced life and making a conscious effort to achieve it.

How do you find balance?
Jaclyn



9 November 2012

Pasta: Bacon and Bocconcini

I eat a lot of pasta, usually with tomato sauce. But some days I want something a bit different. I love the combination of red onions and garlic and used this as my base for this dish.  I had just bought some bocconcini cheese (one of my favourites) and had some bacon left over in the fridge. I think bacon is the right amount of salty to be paired with bocconcini. 
I cooked the bacon first, then added the onions and garlic to the same pan

Probably one of my favourite cheeses! I often eat them on their own. Grabbing a couple each time I pass the fridge.

After cooking the pasta, I mixed it together with the cheese and the bacon mixture. I added a bit of olive oil. Then dug in! 
What is your favourite alternative to tomato sauce?
Jaclyn

7 November 2012

Day at the Farm





I finally got a time to spend the day at a farm and go apple picking! I have been dying to go for weeks now and am so excited to make some pie with my freshly picked apples.  It was the first day that it wasn't raining and although it was a bit chilly it was a perfect day at the farm.  
Vest: Old Navy. Sweater: H&M. Jeans: AE. Boots: Hunter. Purse: Coach. 
The farm had all these cute signs telling you what kind of apples were in each row.  Many of the apples were finished for the season by the time we went so hopefully I can try and get there earlier next year. 




 The farm also had tractor rides and an awesome corn maze. The corn maze was fun to wander through  and it was fun to watch all the kids also visiting the farm race through the maze trying to beat each other to the end. 

I have been enjoying fall so much this year and I am not ready for the colder weather that has slowly been moving in. I wish we could have a longer fall and a shorter winter. I am really enjoying all the fall clothes, boots and activities. 


Jaclyn