Utter Your Thanks Out-loud Each Day

Some days, when things are going totally not your way, we have the tendency to focus on the negative and have it continue to dictate our moods and feelings. This is not productive and will not help us to feel better in any way.
What I try to do, especially when I’m down and feeling my worst, I try to utter my thanks by finding one thing I’m thankful for each morning. This helps to ground me and remind me that their are great things in my life that shine through the bad at all times. We need to realize that there is good in all bad even when we can’t see it.
Try to find one thing you are thankful for right now. It will improve your mood even if just the tiniest bit.

I Feel It Coming

I AM OBSESSED WITH THIS SONG! I don’t really listen to the radio, so I just recently heard this song of course. As soon as I heard it for the first time a few weeks ago, I knew that it was going to be a song that was stuck in my head for weeks. I listen to this song at least once a day everyday and it is my go to pick me up song. It cheers me right up! If you haven’t heard I Feel It Coming by The Weeknd & Daft Punk yet, I suggest you listen to it as soon as possible. You will definitely feel like getting up and dancing!

 

Eating the Colours of the Rainbow

In honour of the Pride Parade that took place in Toronto last Sunday, I just wanted to post the colourful treats that I found at a Loblaws on Queens Quay East. Celebrating Pride through rainbow foods sounds like a good idea to me!

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Summer Fever (Toronto International Film Festival)

On June 30th, I went to the TIFF|Bell Lightbox to watch a collection of 5 short films curated for the Summer Fever series. I love short films and I truly did enjoy these ones. All five of the films had a common theme: sexuality. The theme of sexuality was explored in 5 very different ways but still clearing expressed the complexity of the state. Here are my reviews of each short.

  1. Bird Hearts

After being pressed by her boyfriend Benjamin and their friends, Maya recounts her most daring sexual escapade… in more detail than Benjamin was prepared for.

Bird Hearts explores the complexity of the male ego. The couple, Maya and Benjamin, have a great sex life…so they think. When Maya begins to tell a story about her greatest sexual expedition the relationship enters shaky territory when Benjamin’s ability to please his girl becomes a concern to him. This film was great as it accurately painted a picture of the frailty of the masculinity in men when they begin to feel inadequate or less able. I really did love this film and I would give it a 4.5/5 rating.

2. Balcony

[http://bcove.me/j0m552j0]

 

The resident tough girl in a volatile and racially charged neighbourhood falls for a recent immigrant.

This film was amazing; it was my favourite out of all of the five. This film looks into the life of a white girl who has a rather toxic relationship with her step father. She sees a young girl, a refugee from Afghanistan, always standing on her balcony, who lives alone in an apartment with her dad. Due to the high racial tensions in the neighbourhood, the Afghan girl chooses to stay indoors with little interaction. The troubled teen forges a friendship with this girl and seeks a romantic bond with her as she believes that her home life is just like hers due to her quite nature. She seeks love from this girl; the love that she doesn’t have at home but instead she imposed her abuse on her in the most terminal way possible: from the balcony. I would give this film a 5/5 because it was just that amazing.

3. Homebodies

Shannon prepares a pasta dish while having cyber sex with a strange man on her laptop. Andrew wraps himself in Christmas lights and climbs into the bath. Could there be a spark between these two?

This film is about a couple who’s relationship is seems to be…over. The wife is seeking sexual satisfaction through webcam sex and the husband is trying to kill himself with Christmas lights in a bathtub. Each time that the male partner tries to commit suicide, the power switch will automatically shut off, which also freezes the computer screen and stops the female partner from engaging with her online love. Towards the end both couples give up on what they were doing before and take out the trash simultaneously. I think that the power switch was an allusion into the idea that this relationship is far from over. The power cutting off is like another chance for both of them, as it is made difficult for him to die, and difficult for her to please himself. For the humour in this film and the fact that I was consistently engaged, I would give it a 4/5.

4. One Last Night

Passion, rebellion and punk rock are all in the mix on the last night of a fiery relationship on the verge of going long distance.

I liked this film in one way, and in another I didn’t. This film shows a punk rock lesbian couple that are spending their last night together before one moves to Europe and the other stays in Israel. The Noa, the one who was going to meet the other, Orr,  in Europe, was on the fence about the entire decision. After spending a night in jail, Noa has clarity and realizes that she not only doesn’t want to move to Berlin, but that she also no longer wants to be with Orr. I would give this film a 3.5/5 for its honest protract of the last night of a couple in subliminal turmoil but also for the realness of internal conflict. I also appreciated the look into a couple that has grown apart.

5. Dredger

[https://vimeo.com/138807508]

An older crew member on a creaking salvage ship stirs the long dormant passions of the captain’s wife, in this visually arresting ode to desire.

To be honest, I don’t really know what I watched here. I watched a film that was clearly filmed on the Portlands in Toronto, ON. It features a husband and wife and an extremely weird older fisherman. I think that the wife begins to be attracted to the fisherman due to his weird hoarding ways. Some things spinned, gravity was tested. I like a story and overall there wasn’t one here; it was very abstract. I would give this film a 2/5.

 

If you ever have a chance to see any of these shorts, I would highly recommend it. Also, if you have a chance to go to TIFF, I would also recommend it.

Artscape Wychwood Barns

Decided to take a walk along St. Clair Ave. West and I stumbled upon this beauty. I didn’t get to go inside because it was after hours but the streetscape and architecture was intriguing enough to photograph.

 

Rainbow Corn Salad

IMG_2161This picture does not do this salad justice. After finding the original recipe on Pinterest, I decided to try it for myself (with some substitutions of course).

What’s unique about this simple recipe is the fact that the corn gives it its sweet taste while the red (or purple) onion gives it a spicy kick.

Overall, I have really enjoyed eating the colourful summer salad for lunch and I am excited to share this recipe with you.

 

Ingredients

  • 2 Cups of Corn (canned or frozen are good)
  • Half of a red (or purple) onion diced
  • 1 sweet bell pepper (green, red, orange or yellow) diced
  • 1/4 of a Cucumber diced
  • A slice of a hot pepper (scotch bonnet or jalapeno)
  • 1 teaspoon of black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon of oil (olive or vegetable oil)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of Lemon or Lime Juice

Instructions

  • Combine the diced onions, bell pepper, cucumber together
  • Heat a pan up with the oil, slice of hot pepper, lemon/lime juice and the black pepper
  • Add corn into pan and stir for 2-4 minutes
  • Combine seasoned corn into bowl with the other ingredients
  • Chill in the fridge and serve!

 

I hope that you try this simple and tasty recipe this summer and that it is as good for you as it was for me!

My Lilac Tree

Something that many people know about me is that I love my backyard. My lilac tree is one of my favourite things about my backyard, especially when its in full bloom and smelling just so lovely.