Inspiring Blog Award


Yippee! Amanda, the woman behind the blog In Real Life, has nominated me for the Inspiring Blog Award! It’s very flattering to receive this acknowledgement from a fellow blogger – thank you, Amanda! Her blog is beautiful to look at and pertains to some of my favourite topics – fashion, home decor, parenting and of course – food! You should definitely have a look at what she’s been up to. Once again, her blog can be found here.

Awards are cool because they provide an opportunity to reveal a bit more about yourself to your readers (well, in point form at least), and in turn – by passing on the award – draw your readers’ attention to some of your favourite blogs. Here are the guidelines for accepting the award (taken directly from Amanda’s blog):

1. Display the award image on your blog page.

2. Link back to the person who nominated you.

3. State seven facts about yourself.

4. Nominate 15 other bloggers for the award.

5. Notify your bloggers of their nomination and link to their posts.

Here are 7 facts about myself (I really had to wrack my brain this time):

  1. I’m an extremely light sleeper.
  2. I air dry ALL of my clothes, socks included.
  3. I’m a mute in the morning until I’ve had a large cup of coffee and read at least a few pages of a book.
  4. I can’t stand Febreeze, plug-in ‘air fresheners’ or scented laundry detergent.
  5. My favourite part of grocery shopping is paying a visit to the bulk aisle for candy.
  6. I’m continually amazed by babies’ talent for mess and destruction.
  7. I can easily spend hours combing through the racks and shelves at thrift stores – it’s relaxing and I always find amazing stuff.

And now on to the fun part. Here are my nominees for the Inspiring Blog Award (I’ve tried to pick blogs I’ve yet to nominate for an award – for variety’s sake!):

I hope everyone takes a few moments to check out my nominees! And thanks again to Amanda for nominating me for the award 🙂

Sunshine Award

December was a pretty cool month for me here on WordPress as I was nominated for three blog awards! While I really enjoy the work that goes into creating recipes, cooking, photographing and writing for my blog, it’s also gratifying to know there are people out there who appreciate the fruits of my endeavours! I posted about my nomination for the Beautiful Blogger Award here and the Liebster Award here. The third award I was nominated for is the Sunshine Award – an award given to those who “positively and creatively inspire others in the blogosphere” – which I’m finally getting around to accepting in this post! The nomination came from Urbanfoodlover, a fantastic culinary blog with lots of tasty, mostly vegetarian recipes from the writer’s home kitchen in Singapore. Thank you for the nomination, Urbanfoodlover! Do make a point of checking out her blog if you haven’t already 🙂
Here are the guidelines for the Sunshine Award:
  1. Visit and thank the blogger who nominated you
  2. Acknowledge that blogger on your blog and link back
  3. Copy and paste the award icon on your blog
  4. Answer the 10 questions listed below
  5. Nominate up to 10 blogs for the award, link to their blog in your post, and notify them on their blog

The 10 questions:

  1. Who is your favorite philosopher? I have little recollection of the classic philosophers I learned about in university, so I’ll go with someone more current: Eckhart Tolle
  2. What is your favorite number? 9
  3. What is your favorite animal? Wolves and sharks
  4. What are your Facebook and Twitter? My blog’s Facebook page is here and my Twitter page is here 
  5. What is your favorite time of the day? Wine-o-clock 😉
  6. What was your favorite vacation? London, England
  7. What is your favorite physical activity? Dancing
  8. What is your non-alcoholic drink? Black coffee
  9. What is your favorite flower? Tulips and gerbera daisies
  10. What is your passion? Food, cooking, and raising my little boy

And finally, here are my nominees for the Sunshine Award:

  1. Becca’s Green Kitchen – A great resources for healthy, vegetarian recipes. Becca is vegetarian for ethical and environmental reasons and expresses this through her cooking.
  2. Blissful Britt – A fun-to-read healthy-living blog written by a once vegetarian, now vegan. Britt like to run and eat and is very funny on top of it all.
  3. The Hungry Mum – A Sydney-based writer and mum with a real knack for churning out spectacular baked goods. If you have an unabashed sweet tooth like me, you’ll love this blog.
  4. Kitchenalia – A catalogue of endeavours in the kitchen – some successful, others not so much – all described very wittily. The writer’s blog also contains Chicago-area restaurant reviews and well as kitchen gadget and book reviews.
  5. Live Blissful – Another great blog out of Australia! Look here for an impressive cross-section of delicious vegan recipes.
  6. The Pancake Princess – This blog is truly where it’s at for knock-your-socks-off pancake recipes and other sweet delicacies! Erika is a great writer and photographer to boot – check out her blog and be prepared to drool hard.
  7. Savor the Food – Chef Randall is passionate about cooking and baking and this really comes through in his recipes. His blog also contains a useful inventory of basic cooking tips.
  8. Small Kitchen Chronicles – I love this blog because like me, Christina does all her cooking in a very small space! The recipes she posts are amazing, and there’s even a cool section on essential items that every small kitchen should be stocked with. Definitely worth a look!
  9. Sophie’s Foodie Files – Sophie lives in Brussels, Belgium and has created a very impressive catalogue of recipes, all of which are indexed by ingredient and clearly labelled according to whether they’re vegetarian, vegan, gluten free and/or dairy free!
  10. Spontaneous Tomato – Allison is a fantastic cook and is knowledgable about a number of ethnic cuisines. I always learn something when I visit her blog, and grow instantly hungry whenever I lay eyes on her beautifully photographed dishes!

Congratulations, everyone! Keep up the great blogging 🙂 And thanks again to Urbanfoodlover for the nomination!

Liebster Award


Hot on the heels of my nomination for the Beautiful Blogger Award, two of my fellow bloggers nominated me for the Liebster Award! When I first started my blog a few months ago I had no idea whether anyone would actually read it, awash as the Internet is in food blogs. So to not only gain readers, but for them to recommend me for awards is pretty cool 🙂 Thanks a bunch to Larissa at Love & Green Juice (an excellent resource for vegan recipes) and GiRRL_Earth (a blog focussing on environmental awareness and issues surrounding animal rights and veganism) for the nominations – I really do appreciate the recognition!

The purpose of the Liebster Award is to highlight the efforts and contributions of those who are new to blogging. Here are the guidelines for the award:

  • Add the award icon to your blog.
  • Link to your nominator to say thank you.
  • Each blogger should post 11 facts about themselves.
  • Answer the questions the tagger has set for you and create 11 questions for your nominees to answer.
  • Choose 11 up-and-coming bloggers with less than 200 followers, go to their blog, and tell them about the award.

Here are 11 facts about myself:

  1. I love ballet and modern dance and would like to take classes again some day.
  2. I’m an only child.
  3. I really like processed cheese slices (don’t judge me).
  4. I need a lot of peace and quiet in my life in order to feel content.
  5. I love watching documentaries on just about any topic.
  6. While I scorn most female stereotypes, I do yearn to have a walk-in closet.
  7. I love reading novels in which deeply flawed characters are depicted humorously.
  8. I have a hard time sitting still and always like to be busying my hands with something.
  9. I like that I’m getting older and wouldn’t want to go back to being in my teens or 20s.
  10. I don’t understand the appeal of either golf or gambling.
  11. I’m an avid crocheter but have had to retire this hobby for the time being because balls of yarn and babies don’t mix.

I didn’t receive questions from GiRRL_EARTH, so I’ll cut straight to Larissa’s 11 questions:

  1. What do you do to relax? Reading and cooking both relax me. So does window-shopping.
  2. What is your go-to recipe on a busy day? Steamed veggies and brown rice topped with this miso gravy.
  3. Which year do you think back on with most fondness? My son was born in 2011, so I’ll go with that year 🙂
  4. What time of day is your favourite? I like the morning, when I can quietly read, listen to the radio and get my first hit of caffeine via a fresh pot of coffee.
  5. What do you see if you look to the left? A laptop charger, a camera, an envelope of photos and a dark window.
  6. Whose shoulder has collected the most of your tears? I try not to pull my parents into my personal dramas, but when the going gets tough I usually go running to them. It’s not always the wisest idea, but I still do it.
  7. What activity energizes you? Dancing and working out at the gym, although lately I haven’t been able to do either (as evidenced by the tightness of my pants).
  8. What have you tried for the first time recently? Baby kale, and it was delicious.
  9. Where do you drink your morning beverage (coffee/tea/smoothie)? I drink my morning coffee on the couch in the RV.
  10. What was the last gift you gave yourself? Every time I shop for groceries I think of it as a gift, as so many people have to make do with so much less.
  11. What are you most grateful right now? It’s pretty cliche, but I’m thankful for my health and my life. A few weeks ago my boyfriend witnessed the aftermath of an accident where a pedestrian (a young woman in her late teens) had been struck and killed instantly by a vehicle that had run a red light. This made me realize just how unpredictable our lives are and how we can be gone in an instant. With that in mind I’m trying to not take my life for granted.

While all of the blogs I’ve nominated are new within the last year, not every blog shows its number of followers, so in some cases I can’t say for sure whether my nomineese meet the ‘less than 200 followers’ requirement. Apologies in advance (and way to go) if any of you do indeed have more than 200 followers! At any rate, here are my nominees:

  1. Honey for the Bees. Sookisu’s blog chronicles her life since making the switch from vegetarian to vegan. Lots of great vegan recipes here, too.
  2. In Vegetables We Trust. A vegan blog which features a nice cross section of recipes, from pot pies to pasta to cookies. Alexander grew up cooking and baking alongside his parents so he knows what he’s doing!
  3. Lucy’s Friendly Foods. Lucy is a vegetarian and professionally-trained chef whose recipes take into account her children’s food sensitivities. Most recipes on her blog are are dairy, egg and sesame free and all of them look delicious!
  4. More Than Greens. A vegetarian blogger on a mission to disprove those who think being vegetarian means depriving yourself of good food. The writer is an Australian living in London and posts a variety of recipes, product reviews, travel stories, and opinion pieces on various topics relating to vegetarianism.
  5. Nuts Over Oats. One of my fave bloggers, Oatsgirl’s recipes all incorporate oats in some way. If you think oats are purely the stuff of porridge and fruit crumble, you are dead wrong. Visit her blog and discovery the possibilities!
  6. The Penny Parsnip. A vegetarian blogger whose aim is to show that eating well doesn’t have to cost you a fortune. Go here for frugal and delicious vegetarian recipes, from the savoury to the sweet.
  7. Rub a Dub Dub. A catalogue of beautifully photographed vegetarian recipes. I’m envious of this woman’s photography skills and she’s clearly a wonderful cook, too.
  8. Toy Kitchen Chef. A blog written by a student trying to maintain a balanced, nutritious diet while at college. Her recipes are mostly vegan and vegetarian, and are quick and easy to follow!
  9. Vegan Flavorista. Fresh and flavourful vegan recipes from the kitchen of a chef and food writer. My mouth waters when I look at this blog.
  10. Veggie *What* Now?. A healthy living blog which features plenty of tasty vegetarian recipes. The writer has certain food allergies but uses this limitation as an opportunity to think more creatively about the food she makes.
  11. Versatile Vegan. Lots of great mostly-vegan recipes here created by Holley, a most-of-the-time-vegan. Her amusing depictions of family life make for an entertaining read.

Here are my questions for the nominees:

  1. What do you think are the three best items to donate to the food bank?
  2. What book are you currently reading and would you recommend it?
  3. How do you typically spend your time between eating dinner and going to bed?
  4. Describe your favourite local restaurant.
  5. What is your guilty pleasure when it comes to food?
  6. Who is your favourite artist?
  7. What is your favourite fruit or vegetable that grows in or around the area you live in?
  8. Which quality do you appreciate most in people?
  9. Describe favourite way to spend $10.
  10. In a perfect world, who would cook you dinner every night?
  11. Which kitchen utensil or piece of cook wear do you use the most?

Congratulations! I know everyone is busy so I have zero expectation that nominees respond to this award. But for those who can find the time I’m looking forward to reading your responses! Thanks again to Love & Green Juice and GiRRL_EARTH for the Liebster nominations 🙂

Beautiful Blogger Award

A few weeks back the person (or possibly persons) behind the blog Crew Cuisine kindly nominated me for the Beautiful Blogger Award! This is the first award I’ve received since I started this blog four months ago and the recognition is much appreciated 🙂 Crew Cuisine is an enigmatic entity! It isn’t a recipe blog per se, but rather a catalogue of home cooked dishes and cooking projects, all of which are described using humorous double entendres and a clever writing style I can’t accurately characterize as I didn’t get far in post-secondary English. I particularly enjoy their posts which feature Southwestern dishes (their tamales were a recent favourite) as this is a cooking style I know little about. Their ongoing quest to bake the perfect loaf of sourdough bread also makes for an interesting read. I definitely recommend checking out their blog!

The rules for the Beautiful Blogger Award are as follows:

  • Copy the Beautiful Blogger Award logo and place it in your post;
  • Thank the person who nominated you and link back to their blog;
  • State 7 things about yourself;
  • Nominate 7 other bloggers for their own Beautiful Blogger Award, and comment on their blogs to let them know

Without further ado, here are 7 vaguely interesting things about me:

  1. I hardly watch any television but love listening to the radio – especially CBC Radio 1
  2. I was indifferent about having kids until I actually had one last year. Now I can’t get enough of the little sucker… he’s the best 🙂
  3. I could happily subsist on a diet of black coffee, baked goods and candy (particularly liquorice allsorts), but know better of it
  4. At 34 I’ve finally embraced the fact that I’m an introvert and a homebody and that this isn’t going to change 🙂
  5. I have a Masters degree in Criminology but have yet to put it to any real use (sorry, mum and dad)
  6. I’ve never learned how to drive and don’t particularly want to, although I know I have to at some point soon
  7. My favourite music is 80s new wave – I will never tire of Depeche Mode, nor Simple Minds nor Echo and the Bunnymen!

Phew! That was like squeezing blood from a stone. Now let’s get to the good stuff. It was hard whittling it down, but here are the 7 blogs I nominate for the Beautiful Blogger Award!

I fully realize there are lots of  blog awards floating around the Internet and that these nominees might not have the time nor the inclination to respond to this one. So if they choose they can simply take this nomination as a reflection of the fact I enjoy reading their blog, and also as encouragement to keep up the awesome work 🙂

  1. Emmy Cooks. I wish it were possible to hire this woman as my personal chef, but I realize she’s already busy enough tending to her flock of children (and chickens?). Her blog is an impressive collection of healthy, flavourful and (mostly) vegetarian recipes, and I highly recommend you check it out.
  2. GEKIUMA. A prolific blogger with an enviable knowledge of Asian cooking methods, amongst other things. Reading Cam’s posts always makes me feel like I’m learning something new. And she’s funny, too.
  3. GiRRL_Earth. An eclectic blog with a focus on animal rights and environmental awareness, GiRRL_Earth’s posts serve as a reminder as to why I should go back to being vegan. Her blog also contains some easily-achievable tips for reducing one’s carbon footprint.
  4. Love & Green Juice. Fantastic vegan recipes created by a Canadian living in Qatar. Larissa is very knowledgable about nutrition and places a lot of importance on the connection between the foods we eat and our overall wellbeing. Plus she embraces the concept of eating lentils for breakfast… which is awesome.
  5. Made of Stars. Ally is a great writer and makes a convincing case for becoming vegan for ethical reasons. Her blog also showcases a variety of delicious and flavourful vegan recipes. Plus she’s raising her 4 kids as vegans – an admirable feat!
  6. Veggie Bento Love. Check out this blog for great ideas on how to put together meatless bento box lunches. To think of all the slices of greasy buck-a-slice pizza I ate on my lunch hours, when all along I could have been bringing nutritious bento lunches with me. Sigh!
  7. V-Spot. A fellow Canadian vegetarian blogger, Amy’s recipes are nicely photographed and easy to follow. She’s passionate about dog rescue, and a girl after my own heart, her blog also features an extensive wine review section!

Congrats to the above bloggers and thanks again to Crew Cuisine for the BBA nomination! Maybe one day I’ll work up the gusto to attempt a tamale here in the kitchenette of the Gypsy Roller. In the meantime I look forward to reading more of your posts 🙂