Vancouver’s Chinatown Bound…

I played hooky from all my responsibilities on Friday and headed to Vancouver’s vibrant Chinatown district with my good pal, Sarah, of Diary of a House Elf. What an absolute pleasure it is to sling my camera over my neck and start snapping shots–I really don’t do it enough. Chinatown is full of visual–and nasal–stimulation!!! It’s a gritty area with extreme poverty bumped up against extraordinary beauty. The people are so friendly and curious, and Sarah observed the irony that the bustling streets are more of a “neighbourhood” than our quiet suburban village.

Vancouver's Chinatown District

The lighting was really perfect for taking outdoor shots…Vancouver grey! It was also a perfect opportunity put my new telephoto lens to the test.

Vancouver's Chinatown District

Scout about it…

I’m a huge fan of Birch & Bird and the vintage handmade markets they hold every few months. My gal pals, Kim & Ann, joined me for the preview event for Scout Market last night in Abbotsford, BC. It was a love fest for all things vintage and fabulous. We nibbled on delicious cheese and cupcakes, sipped lovely wine and coveted EVERYTHING we saw. The market is running all day today. If you get a chance to drop in, I’d highly recommend it!

summer dreams…

Are you dreaming of long summer days? I sure am.

I just entered a contest that asked what my plans for the summer are. This is what I wrote…

Lying in the grass with my girl watching clouds float by. Skimboarding at the beach with my boy. Drinking wine with my husband. Making jam, with my dogs at my heels waiting for drips. Hanging blankets outside to air out. Painting my nails hot pink. Playing loud music with the windows open. Loving fresh air. Loving life………..

What are you dreaming about doing this summer? It’ll be here before you know it.

stuff a cookie in it…

You know how sometimes you’re giving a presentation on the joys of blogging, and you say something flippant, like…oh…I don’t know…maybe, “If you ever see me blogging about food and recipes, you’ll know I have writer’s block!!”?

And then you go home and think about it for a while, and you realize that you probably just insulted half of the attendees in the room and flipped the bird at one of the things that gives you great pleasure?

Was I drunk?

Do you want to know what the kicker is? I used to have a baking business called Sugar Drops, and I loved baking! Duh.

So, as a peace offering to all the food bloggers out there (and there are a frighteningly high number of you), here is my highly-coveted SUGARDROP’S CHARLIE BROWN COOKIES recipe. Ta Da (said in a pathetic eating-crow kinda voice). They’re Charlie Browns ’cause there are peanuts and chocolate in them…get it? I know. Brilliant, right?

Makes about 40 absolutely amazingly delicious peanut butter chocolate chunk cookies, if you like that sort of thing. They’re perfectly crunchy and chewy at the same time.

1 cup unsalted butter (if you even think about using margarine, I’m gonna come over there and smack you with my spatula) room temp

1 cup peanut butter chunky or smooth (I use KRAFT unsweetened unsalted ’cause it actually tastes like peanuts)

1 cup white sugar

1 cup brown sugar (packed)

2 eggs

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

2 cups flour

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 cup chocolate chips

1 cup unsalted roasted peanuts (shelled…duh)

5 ounces or more Bernard Callebaut milk chocolate (I use Callebaut ’cause it’s AWESOME. If you love something else, use it.) chopped into 1/2-inch chunks.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheet with parchment paper (You can use an ungreased pan if you don’t have parchment. For the love-of-Pete, go buy some parchment!).

In a mixer, cream together butter and peanut butter. Add sugars and mix well. Mix in eggs, one at a time. Add vanilla and mix.

Sift dry ingredients together and then add them to the butter and mix well. Fold in peanuts and chocolate by hand so they don’t get crushed.

Drop by spoonfuls onto pan about 2″ apart (they spread out), and pat down with a fork dipped in flour. Bake on the middle rack for approximately 15 minutes. Leave on the pan for a couple of minutes on top of the oven before removing to cool.

Bon Appetit!!!!

cool collage…

Looking for a great weekend project? I just love these photo/picture collages. Who doesn’t have photos stashed away that need to be framed and hung?

This one is quite unique. I love that it wraps around the corner!

photo by Blount Architectual and Interior Design via Houzz

The collage wall is just so impressive in this setting. I wouldn’t mind getting my hands on that table and chair set too!

photo by Coburn Architecture and Interiors via Houzz

photo courtesy via Houzz

photo courtesy Houzz

And just when you thought you had to paint all your walls white…

photo courtesy Domino magazine via Houzz

What I want to know is who climbed up the ladder on this one…

photo by Tracy Murdock Allied ASID via Houzz

friday night happy happy..

House is clean (never happens)…kids are both at friends (never happens)…hubby’s on the way home late (always happens)…the dogs aren’t at the windows harassing passersby (never happens)…I’ve got time to read new magazines with a glass of chilled wine and my beloved sappy smooth hits playing on the stereo without someone saying their ears are actually bleeding (never, ever, ever happens).

This is a line-up of SOME of the magazines that have been backing up on my desk. Clearly, the fact that I have multiple issues of the same magazine is an indication of just how far behind I am. I need a weekend just to clear up the log jam. What a wonderful dilemma!

Here’s a Friday assignment for you: Read a new magazine this weekend! You won’t regret it…EVER.

hooray for orange…

In case I haven’t mentioned it (over and over again while looking in the mirror)…I love the colour of my red hair. Maybe that’s why I love the colour orange! So here’s my little Friday indulgence…let’s hear it for ORANGE!!!

The February/March issue of Lonny Magazine features the home of L.A. designer, Betsy Burnham. She uses just the right hits of orange throughout her home. Anything more would tilt the colour into the “annoying” category.

Drooooooool. Hermes chose the colour of my hair for its iconic line of products, including their signature boxes which have become a sought-after decor accessory!!!!

This is a painting I did a few years ago (acrylic on canvas). Please excuse the photo’s quality–I am a LOUSY…er….LAZY…er…IMPATIENT photographer.

painting by Jennifer Findlay

Orange is goofy and playful…but she can be pretty darn SHMEXY too (she might be a tad unsteady on anything higher than flip flops though…sigh). Just look at these Christian Louboutin shoes from Polyvore.Me like…

me want…

orange bike

(hmmm…I should submit that for some haiku contests).

by Orange Girl Photographs

I found this bike on a brilliantly-monikered website–Orange Girl Photographs. Apparently Orange Girl used to drive an orange Superbeetle VW bug when she was in art school. Guess what! I used to drive an orange Superbeetle VW bug when I was at school. Sadly (sorry mom & dad)…I was taking Political Science at UBC…not ART at Emily Carr Institute of Art & Design!!!!!

photo via Volkszone

Last, but by no means least…the beloved Creamsicle–nature’s creamiest orange cool treat. Gotta go phone Mark to pick some up on the way home from work…bye for now.

via Photo Mural

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