Monthly Archives: February 2015

Rain

Jennifer Michie Rain

It has rained off and on for most of the day. Heavy at times, a slight drizzle at other points. I wish it was snow, instead of rain. I think Spring is trying very hard to come out and play, but I don’t know if I’m done with Winter yet.

A Warm Gummy Bear Day

Now, I am not a fan of Ed Rooney, but I had a bit of his day today. I had a warm gummy bear day. Do you remember that scene at the end of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, when Mr. Rooney walks on the bus and he has to sit next to the girl who offers him a warm gummy bear? By the end of today, if someone had offered me one, I know that I would have also flicked it away in silent disgust.

This morning I was one of only three people waiting for the train, but then it was late and there was a crowd. A woman, who I see everyday waiting on the train as well, actually used her briefcase to block me, so she could get on before me. I’m going to try and chalk that up to the fact that her hair is always pulled back in such a tight bun, it looks like it hurts. So maybe the pain from her bun, causes her to always be so rude. Of course, all the men made sure they were getting on, pushing and shoving their way through. Gee, nothing like a gentleman to let a lady on first.

Tonight heading home, I got a seat on the tube. That never happens. Next time, I’m just gonna keep standing. The tube smelled awful, like that hot school bus smell with a bunch of punky kids on it and you know that they had gym class that day and haven’t showered, do you know what I’m talking about? The man who sat down next to me, hadn’t bathed in quite awhile, but I couldn’t politely or discreetly move as by that point the tube was packed and there was no room. I tried to breath through my mouth.

The teenage boy across from me had his finger so far up his nose that I was sure we would have to call for a surgeon to remove it, when he suddenly pulled out a ginormous booger and proceeded to fling it onto a ladies skirt! I think my mouth might have fallen completely open at this point.

A five minute walk from the tube to the train station, where by the time I got on a train, I was frozen solid and was so happy that for once the train driver had been kind enough to turn the heating on. This warm fuzzy feeling didn’t stay for long, no siree, it didn’t! It lasted only long enough for a man to get on with a huge tuna salad sandwich baguette. The smell of tuna baking in the heat of the train was utterly enticing, NOT!

I was so happy to get off the train and breath in the fresh air again. I slowly walked home. By the time I got to the cottage, I couldn’t feel my fingers, my nose, or my cheeks, but I didn’t care, I couldn’t take one more smell or rude person today.

Today was definitely a MONDAY!

The Lion Dance

Jennifer Michie Lion Dance 1

Chinatown is an area I criss-cross through often when I’m traveling here and there in London. Yesterday, while going to pick up a goat good luck charm for the Chinese New Year, we happened upon the lion dance.

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This is one of my favourite things to see! Every year, usually by chance, we come across this tradition being performed. There are two performers inside of the costume (which is how you know it is a lion and not a dragon dance) and they go from door to door performing “cai qing” which translates to, “plucking the greens”. The lion dances around the doorway where the greens are hung, moving cat like backwards and forwards, or bending low as if hunting prey and slowly works his way up to pulling the greens down.

Occasionally we’ve seen a shop put out oranges on a small table to which the lion happily gobbles up. Yesterday one store on the second floor placed their greens, tied to a stick, out through the window. The acrobatic team worked with each other, standing on shoulders and stretching the lion’s neck, they plucked the greens from the second story window, to the delight of all of us below. There was a lot of cheering.

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As we headed out through the gates, the Hippodrome Casino was handing out fortune cookies to advertise their business. Unfortunately, the fortune inside wasn’t a fortune, but was another form of advertisement for a big gaming event. But, Mr. Michie didn’t know that, he only saw the side written in Mandarin.

I told him it was I good thing that I could read Mandarin, to which he just stopped and looked at me with raised eyebrows. With a smile, he asked me what the fortune said, to which I replied that it said: “Help! Help! I’m trapped in a fortune cookie factory!” to which we both busted out laughing.

That is a very old joke, but it never gets old! When we were little and would go out for Chinese food with my grandparents and it came time for the fortune cookies to be passed out, we would go around the table and everyone would read their fortune. My Grandpa, would always say:, “Oh, No! You’ll never believe this, my fortune says: Help! Help! I’m trapped in a fortune cookie factory!” to which everyone around the table would bust out laughing and there would be a short pause while my sister and I puzzled this one out for a second! He was a great teaser!

Oh, to be little again! I’m happy that we had the good fortune to see the lion dance again this year, it is always magical to share in this experience.

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White Chocolate Bark

Jennifer Michie Bark

I had a block of Log House vanilla flavoured almond bark to use in the pantry. I love this stuff! It is great to dip pretzels in, fruit, nuts. You name it, it will most likely taste delicious with this smothered over it. I love opening that package, the smell that hits you instantly reminds me of being little. I can taste the white chocolate Easter candy lollipops that my mom would sometimes get us from the hardware store in town.

We put peanut M&Ms, popcorn, marshmallows and a few sprinkles on this bark. We hit the nutty, the salty and the sweet notes. Now, we just have to wait for it to set. I know what I’m having tonight: a big hunk of bark with a cup of hot chocolate…

{They have a nice recipe site HERE, always a good starting point if you want to make something delicious for bake sales, parties, holiday treat packages or something delicious just for you!}

Christmas in Denmark

Jennifer Michie Copenhagen 1

It’s only February, I’m not too late to share this post with you, right? Well, I hope not, life is just whizzing by me at the moment and I have yet to manage to get this post finished and out. So, I’m crossing it off of my To-Do list and sharing my love of Copenhagen with you, because after recent events, Copenhagen needs all the love we can give it.

I’m sure you guessed from some of my previous photographs over the month of December and my opening statement, that we in fact, spent Christmas in Copenhagen.It was BEAUTIFUL! It snowed on Christmas day and little bits here and there after that. It was frosty, there were paper stars lit and hanging in everyone’s windows, Christmas trees twinkling in front of apartment buildings and shops. It was magical.

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We walked and walked and walked and discovered and explored some areas we had not been to previously. We visited Tivoli and their magical Alpine Christmas market. It was even more dazzling as it had snowed the day before and fresh snow blanketed everything in sight. All of the Christmas Market shops were set up in little chalets and on the back of them a bird house was attached with silhouettes of birds and hearts and stars. These “bird houses” were the boxes that housed the smoke machine that would send smoke plumming out of the chimneys on the little shingled roofs like a real house. It was very cozy, indeed!

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There were Christmas trees lit around the Alpine Christmas village. The lights twinkling out from the snow laden branches. We stopped at Andersons to taste the famous pork sandwich that they only serve during this festive season and of course we picked up some mandelhorns for dessert! We saw the water and light show in the lake, scored to The Nutcracker and picked up a few surprises for family and friends.

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When we felt too cold we would grab a hot chocolate or find a coal pit they had set out in various places of the park to stand with others and warm our hands. We finished our evening with a strawberry jam and sugar crepe from a charming little stall and sat in a sleigh to eat it, very romantic! Oh, these are the things that dreams are made of!

We visited the Louisiana Museum again and I got to walk in The Riverbed! I made it! It was also a red letter day because I finally got to see a Louise Bourgeois spider in person, it has become a running joke with us, as every time I have had the opportunity to see one in person we have missed it for one reason or another.

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I love museums but I do have a few favorites and the Louisiana is in the top 10! Of course looking at all this gorgeous artwork builds up an appetite and we needed to stop for a snack! I chose this amazing looking apple roulade. Needless to say, I ate every single bite!

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The Louisiana at night:

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We made a few more discoveries this time, playing get lost and winding through beautiful neighborhoods and shopping districts. We feasted on delicious food and went to Emmery’s for hot coffee and fresh chocolate cinnamon buns for breakfast. We watched the snow softly fall while we sat bundled up on the couches, with the view of the river stretched out before our floor to ceiling windows. The riverboats going by were strewn with lights and one of the water buses even had a little tree perched on the back of the boat.

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I think that Denmark is a land of dreams. It is a place I could quite happily pick up and move to without a second thought. As soon as I leave, I long to return. Hopefully it won’t be too long as I hear those streets calling my name.

This was our view as we were packing up to leave:

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Of course when checking out, you have to write your name on the wall:

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Somehow a stowaway managed to get into our luggage. We found this little nisse bundled up in our bed!

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Our Valentine’s Day

Jennifer Michie Valentine's 1

Well we had a few plans up our sleeves for Valentine’s Day, but ended up just taking the day as it came! It was wonderful! If we got to do something, then we felt it was meant to be, if not, then it wasn’t the Valentine’s we were supposed to have.

First stop, The Prince Charles Cinema, where we just managed to get tickets to see Breakfast at Tiffany’s. It was almost sold-out when we got there. You got a free drink with your ticket. We opted for Coke to go with our popcorn. A lot of people had dressed up in their best 1960’s/Audrey Hepburn attire, it was adorable!

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A walk through Soho, looking at the lanterns strung along the streets for Chinese New Year.

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Dinner at Kua’ Aina, a Hawaiian North Shore treasure since 1975, they have opened two branches in London and we decided to try the Carnaby St. location last night. They serve a selection of Kona Brewing Co. beer and we are big fans, so that was a treat as well. Nothing like the sweet taste of grilled pineapple to make you a happy camper!

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It was a nice day, no pressure, no rushing around, just breathing in each other and the world around us.

Valentine’s Day Pins

Tomorrow is a pink, red and white filled day of LOVE. I love the sweetness of Valentine’s Day, but I think it is important to spread your love around. Don’t save it for one day, let someone know that you care about them and that they matter to you any chance you get, because you never know when you might not have the chance again.

Here’s a few things I’ve been pinning lately to celebrate the day:

Jennifer Michie Valentine Pins 2015

1. You’re A Perfect Peach // The Alison Show
2. Lovebug Pins // Adventures in Fashion
3. Mini Jam Swirled Donuts // Joy the Baker
4. Handmade Treat Pouches // Minted
5. Valentine’s Crackers // Oh Happy Day
6. Valentine’s Bark // Pink Patisserie
7. DIY Paper Hearts // Cakies
8. Heart Favors // Oh Happy Day
9. Goldfish Valentine // Oh Happy Day

{Pinned HERE // Follow me HERE}