Friday, December 31, 2010

Lululemon indecision!

Today I went out for coffee with a friend by Coquitlam Center and decided to exchange the green Lululemon hoodie I bought for the black packpack. The pack I have now has had it and I love the Lulu one, of course :D

I heart fashion!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Hi my name is Darcy and I'm addicted to Lululemon

I seriously have ZERO willpower when it comes to Lululemon.  I went out for brunch at my all-time favourite breakfast place, De Dutch with my friend and former co-worker, Elinor.  Afterwards I wanted to pick up some eye makeup remover from Cranberry Lane so we headed over there, and then we decided to nip over to Coquitlam Center.  I originally set out to get MAC bronzer, but we ended up parking by the entrance that's right beside the Lululemon...and Elinor dragged me in! Totally against my will.  Le sigh...I walked out of there with this hoodie in cactus/lime, a black sports bra (on sale, actually quite cheap!) and a black non-slip headband.  My only consolation is that Elinor spent way more than I did haha.  All in all it was a great day with one of my favourite people. 

Tomorrow I'm going into Coquitlam again for coffee with my friend Erin, and then I'm carrying on to Burnaby to go out for yam fries and to check out the Metrotown Lululemon with my friend Jen.  I've told her she's not allowed to let me spend any more money at Lulu! Maybe I should give her all my cards to hold on to, just to be safe :P

Flirting with Grad School

Recently I've been doing spending a lot of time researching Masters programs.  I'm not 100% sure about teacher's college, and I've found some really cool programs for library studies.  I would want to be a children's librarian, so I could hopefully find a library job in a school.  I'll be applying to SFU to do teacher's college prereqs, and two Grad schools (one in Ireland and one in Ontario) for sure.  I'm looking at two others in Alberta and Quebec.  I would really really like to get out of Quebec though haha.  Lots of exciting options for next year!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Recipe: Low-Fat DC Cupcakes New Year's Eve Strawberry Champagne Sparkler Cupcakes

Servings: Serves 12
Strawberry Champagne Cupcakes (36 mini cupcakes, 3 per champagne flute)
  • 1/2 cup fresh strawberries , diced
  • 1/2 Tbsp. good Champagne (sweet rose Champagne suggested)
  • 2 1/2 cups flour , sifted
  • 2 1/2 tsp. baking powder , sifted
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 4 Tbsp. (4 ounces) unsalted butter
  • 4 Tbsp. unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 cup zero-calorie sweetener (e.g., Splenda)
  • 2 large eggs , at room temperature
  • 2 1/4 tsp. pure vanilla extract plus seeds from 1 vanilla bean
  • 1 1/4 cups skim milk , at room temperature
Champagne Buttercream Frosting
  • 16 Tbsp. (8 ounces) unsalted butter
  • 4 cups confectioner's sugar , sifted
  • 1 tsp. skim milk
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup good Champagne (sweet rose Champagne suggested)
Strawberry Layer
  • 24 fresh strawberries
  • 1 cup good Champagne (sweet rose Champagne suggested)
Chocolate Ganache
  • 2 cups high-quality dark chocolate
For Serving:

12 glass Champagne flutes

12 long spoons

12 indoor-safe sparkler candles

Step 1: Baking the Mini Strawberry Champagne Cupcakes
Preheat the oven to 350°. Line 2 mini cupcake pans with 36 mini baking cups or grease pans with butter if not using baking cups.

Dice up 1/2 cup of fresh strawberries and soak in 1/2 cup of Champagne. Set aside.

Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl.

Place the unsalted butter in the bowl of a stand mixer or hand-held electric mixer. Add the sugar; beat on medium speed until well incorporated.

Mix in applesauce slowly.

Add the eggs one at a time, mixing slowly after each addition.

Combine the vanilla extract, vanilla bean seeds and milk in a large liquid measuring cup.

Reduce the speed to low. Add one-third of the flour mixture to the butter mixture, then gradually add one-third of the milk mixture, beating until well incorporated. Add another one-third of the flour mixture, followed by one-third of the milk mixture. Stop to scrape down the bowl as needed. Add the remaining flour mixture, followed by the remaining milk mixture, and beat just until combined.

Gently fold in the diced Champagne-soaked strawberries, just until incorporated.

Scoop batter into baking cups and bake for 10 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Transfer the pan to a wire rack to cool completely. If using paper baking cups, peel off all the paper baking cups from the cupcakes at this time.

Step 2: Making the Champagne Buttercream Frosting
Place the unsalted butter in the bowl of a stand mixer or hand-held electric mixer. Add the confectioner's sugar; beat on medium speed until well incorporated.

Add the vanilla extract, milk, salt and Champagne, and beat on high speed until light and fluffy. Place frosting in a disposable piping bag with a large round tip.

Step 3: Preparing the Strawberries 
Slice 24 strawberries lengthwise and soak in 1 cup of Champagne for approximately 10 to 15 minutes.

Step 4: Melting the Chocolate Ganache

Break the dark chocolate into small pieces. Fill a medium saucepan with an inch or 2 of water and place over medium-low heat. Place the dark chocolate pieces in a medium glass bowl over the saucepan and melt slowly. Stir occasionally until the chocolate is completely melted. Remove the bowl of melted chocolate from the saucepan. Pour the melted chocolate into a plastic squeeze bottle. (If a squeeze bottle is not available, you can drizzle with a spoon.)

Step 5: Assembling Layers in Champagne Flutes

Line up 12 glass Champagne flutes. Insert 1 mini strawberry Champagne cupcake in the bottom of each glass. Next, pipe a swirl of Champagne buttercream frosting on top of each cupcake. Add several slices of Champagne-soaked strawberries and a drizzle of chocolate. Repeat layers. Finally, place a third mini strawberry Champagne cupcake at the top of each glass, pipe with a final "Georgetown Cupcake signature swirl" of Champagne buttercream frosting, and top with a final drizzle of melted chocolate.

Step 6: Serving
Insert 1 indoor-safe sparkler candle in the top of each glass. Light the candles at midnight, serve with spoons, and enjoy!
Recipe from Oprah website


Christmas Break so far has been nice and relaxing, just the way it should be! I got many wonderful gifts for Christmas, such as:

A tshirt from Plan Canada's Because I am a Girl campaign

The New Red Mitten from The Hudson's Bay Company

I bought this cardigan from Plum in charcoal grey with money I got for Christmas

I also got a long-sleeved black shrug to wear with the dress I got for my friend's January wedding, and a black jewelled clutch, also to wear with the dress (all from Plum).

Yesterday Mom and I went out to see if we could score some more Christmas bargains, and we found some great things at Pier 1! I got this beautiful sparkly silver Eiffel Tower ornaments, a box of mini different coloured disco ball ornaments, a sparkly fleur de lys ornament, and napkins that say, "Peace, Love, Shoes." 

I also needed a strapless bra to wear under the dress for the wedding, so we went to the La Vie en Rose outlet.  Everything was buy one get one free! I found a great strapless bra as well as a sparkley black one.  I got panties to match the sparkly bra and a second pair, because they were free anyways.

I wanted new nail polish for the wedding too, so we went to a salon in the same mall as the outlet, and I got this gorgeous shimmery gunmetal grey OPI polish, as well as a travel-sized Aveda hand lotion and brown Cargo mascara.  The mascara was 25% off and everything in the salon was 15% off on top of any previous discounts.  Score!

Today I went shopping with a friend because she had gotten a gift card to the mall.  She got some great things, and I found a 10$ ivory coloured slouchy tank to wear under my grey Plum cardigan.  

And now I'm on a spending diet :P

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

What I'm Loving Wednesday!

It's my first Wednesday linking up--You can here!

I'm *loving* all of the delicious baking that comes with this time of year: chocolate and almond shortbread, butter tarts, white chocolate candy cane bark, rum balls, etc... *drools*

I'm *loving* these Lululemon pants and the Scuba hoodies, which are perfect for cold winter days (perfectly fitted and you can zip them all the up to your nose!).  Take that -40!

I'm *loving* that I am going to see The King's Speech next week with two amazing friends <3

I'm *loving* looking back at pictures the semester I spent in France last winter, even though it makes me miss it so.

I'm *loving* this organic hand lotion from Escents Aromatherapy in Breeze:

Ultra rich, great scent, non-greasy, and perfect for skin which freaks out in the harsh winter weather.

I'm *loving* that DADT is OVER.  Thank-you President Obama!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Brun chocolat! Rien d'autre!

When I was studying in France I happened upon a small boutique fifteen minutes from my apartment, while showing a friend from Vancouver around (she was studying in Belgium).  There I stumbled upon a dress which became one of the most indulgent purchases I've ever made.  It just so happened I was on the hunt for a party dress.  You see, I'm graduating from university this coming May, and towards the end of the semester there will be a Grad Formal.  A university can do this kind of thing when its student population numbers just 2,000 total.   Back to the dress.  While trying it on I was discussing foot ware colours with Candace (in english) a man in the boutique, who spoke only French, asked what we were talking about, which is when his eyes got wide and he uttered my title, "chocolate brown! Nothing else!"  Between girls, this is not the season for chocolate brown.  I've been looking since I got home in May.  I even went downtown to Holt Renfrew (home of Luis Vuitton, Oscar de la Renta, etc...You get the idea) to find out my size in Christian Louboutin after I found a gorgeous pair of chocolate brown Louboutin heels on ebay.  Alas, the shoes on ebay were not my size.  Since then I've given up on finding shoes in stores.  I resorted to googling "chocolate brown heels" and found these on (NB: I'm Canadian):

I wish the heel was higher on them, but I guess I can't be picky :( Well...that maybe be part of my problem.  I won't wear heels with straps around the ankle (they make petite women look even shorter by cutting the leg off at the ankle-thanks Stacey and Clinton! haha).


Sunday, December 19, 2010

Still blog challenged

In attempting (and succeeding in one respect) to remove a ticket from my blog, I removed a comment from Amanda's Saturday Around the World.  Sorry!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Blog challenged

Somehow I go a ticket on my page...and can't figure out how to get if off lol.  Any tips?

Friday, December 17, 2010

Recipe: Candy cane brownie

1 1/2 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 unsalted butter (I never use unsalted)
12 oz. chocolate chips, divided
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa poder
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup warm milk
10 candy canes, finely crushed

Coat an 8-inch-square baking pan with cooking spray.
In a medium bowl, mix sugar, salt, and flour. Set aside.

In a double boiler or microwave safe bowl, combine butter and half the chocolate chips. Melt, stirring often, then remove from heat. Whisk in cocoa, transfer to a large mixing bowl and set aside.

In a large measuring cup, whisk together eggs, vanilla, and milk. Add to chocolate and cocoa mixture and whisk well to combine. Fold in flour mixture, then mix in remaining chocolate chips and all but 2 tbsps. of the crushed candy canes.

Use a rubber spatula to transfer batter to prepared pans.  Bake in a 350 degree F oven for 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out covered with cakey bits. The centre of the brownies should be set. Dust top of brownies with remaining crushed candy canes then cool completely before serving.

Bon appetit!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


I am a bad blogger, I know.  With the most ridiculous exam period ever, I just would have felt too guilty updating.  I'm in Montreal at a friend's until it's time to leave for the airport.  I'll probably get there ridiculously early, because that's just the way I am.  Tara met me at the bus station last night and I was starving so we went to...Juliet&Chocolat.  Where else? Delicious, as always.  Packed, as always.  Tara's husband Aaron picked us up after and we went back to their place.  Tara had to leave for work at 9, so I got up with her and went on a little adventure (which the reason for must remain a secret.  Shh!) to Atwater Market.  I <3 these things! Full of local cheeses, interesting and hard to find goods, beautiful flowers, and more.  I could spend so much money on food in that place.  I settled for a porc and brie sandwich, croissant, and pain or chocolat (or chocolatine as they say in Quebec) from a delightful boulangerie, much like those you find in France.  They even had...wait for it...croque monsieurs! I desperately wanted one (haven't had once since France) but I wanted something to go because I wasn't hungry for lunch just yet, and a croque has to be eaten toasty warm.  I'm back at Tara's now, and just booked my grad photos online for January 21st.  Flight leaves in T-5 hours!


Friday, December 10, 2010

The days go by

2 weeks and two days! Until them I'm filling my days and looking for the positives.  As much as this province frustrates me, even I'll admit there are incredible bonuses to being here.  Such as:

1)  I've been to New York City twice in one year.  Not something this BC girl ever thought she'd do.

2) I can have breakfast/brunch/lunch/dinner with my best friend whenever I want, without even leaving my building : ) Last night we made the most amaaazing fajitas! My friends will always be my favourite thing about Bishops <3

3) I broke in my new ice skates today.  Bishop's has an ice rink on campus and it's FREE on Sundays for two hours.

4) I've seen my favourite band, Great Big Sea, twice in less than a year.

5) I saw Lion King on Broadway AND bought earrings from Tiffany's on 5th Ave for my 25th birthday <3

To name a few...

Friday night Lara and I saw Harry Potter.  In the almost 3 years I've been in Québec I've never gone to the theatre in Sherbrooke.  I couldn't believe how cheap it was! Only 5.50$ for students! It's DOUBLE the price at home! See, good thing about Quebec.  Needless to say I'll be keeping an eye on what's playing in the future.  To make a night of it (time off campus is precious, friends) we went to Café Caffuchino's.  If anyone out there is ever in the Sherbrooke area this place is a must! Great place to go for dessert and drinks.  Very elegant and sophisticated decor, delicious desserts, and friendly staff.  Win!

Me with my amazing dessert! Chocolate cake base with chocolate mousse center complete with chunks of cheesecake in the mousse.  If there's a Boston Pizza in your area they make the exact same dessert.  Go. Get. It. Now!!

Today I went ice skating for the first time this season with my new skates!  

Tonight I'm going with Suz (my partner in BU crime hehe) to take her little sister back home (she was here for the weekend).  We're meeting her mom in...Vermont I think.  A drive+my BU bestie=LOVE!

Also, Tim Horton's has their chocolate candy cane doughnut back and it almost makes me forgive them for taking away my autumn spice muffin (but not quite).

Darcy xoxo