Tag Archives: decor

One room at a time: My second bedroom

When Jarrod and I decided to move in together, we were pretty determined to find a two-bedroom apartment. We saw ourselves as needing an oasis to occasionally retreat from one another, and to work on our respective hobbies — for me, writing, blogging and food photography, and for Jarrod, working on his model trains and personal IT projects.

And then reality happened. Today, the room sits as a glorified storage space, mostly used for me to shoot my blog and social media photos, and store what train stuff Jarrod hasn’t brought to the club yet.


Weekend snaps: dance class, garlic festival, kitchen fun!

Weekends, amirite?

I’m not going to lie, I’m having a bit of a creativity block when it comes to this post. I just want to zoom past the intro: the weekend was here! Now the weekend is done! Here’s some of the things I did!

Like any classic Bree and Jar weekend, there was minimal socializing and a hell of a lot of productivity.

Friday night I went to my first Toronto vegan meetup at Bloomer’s. I didn’t take any pictures there on account of it was too dark, but here’s my cards for my site that I handed out…

And here’s how cute I looked on the way!

Attempting cuteness for the vegan meetup. #whatveganslookslike #veganselfie A photo posted by Bree Rody-Mantha (@breeganism) on

Saturday morning started out with a sweet run (I’m starting on a 10K trainer program now that I’m getting a bit bored with 5K) and then was followed by my first jazz class in two months.

I don’t have a picture or video of my jazz class, but here’s a clip from one of my old ballet classes at the same studio. You can see me practicing the adage in the background!


A video posted by Metro Movement (@metromovement) on

Jazz class actually felt quite incredible. I haven’t felt that alive in a long time. I’m sad I let myself go without dancing for so long, and I’ll have to make a point of getting back more often. Saturday night some of Jar’s friends were in town and he went out to a metal show. I was quite happy to stay at home (I don’t do loud shows) and watch old movies while chilling with my kitty. I also finally found the power cord for my piano (unpacking has slowed down lately) and got to playing again. Felt good!

Unpacked a most important thing today. A video posted by Bree Rody-Mantha (@breeganism) on

And I sang a bit too.

Feeble attempts.

A video posted by Bree Rody-Mantha (@breeganism) on

Sunday started out with pancakes (you can’t see ’em yet because they’ll be on the blog next Wednesday!) and then a great climb, which I took no pictures of (kinda hard to take pictures while you’re climbing! And a good belayer never takes her eyes off her partner). But immediately after climbing we ventured out to Wychwood Barns for the Toronto Garlic Festival.

He’s actually pretty happy to be at the Garlic festival. A photo posted by Bree Rody-Mantha (@breeganism) on

In truth I found the festival a bit disappointing. None of the advertising seemed to specify that you had to pay to even get in, and every vendor was also paid. There was no ATM on site, so once you ran out of cash that was pretty much it. Plus, in terms of vendors, it was mostly the standard farmer’s market vendors who are there every weekend with a few garlic-specific stalls. We did walk away with a cool new garlic tool for the kitchen (to grind up our garlic like butter!) and a yummy jar of maple mustard, so I won’t poo-poo (poupon?) it entirely.

And then after two years of talkin’ shit I finally got a Vitamix. Look at that face. Oh, and I found a catnip toy for Benny. Look at the little stoner!

Cat’s first catnip in months. IT BEGINS. A video posted by Bree Rody-Mantha (@breeganism) on

Go crazy, Ben.

A video posted by Bree Rody-Mantha (@breeganism) on

Then Jarrod and I got silly in the kitchen with our new garlic tool. We worked really hard on a new recipe that you’ll be able to find this coming Wednesday!

My cat is tripping balls six feet away. A photo posted by Bree Rody-Mantha (@breeganism) on

I also finally turned on my record player for the first time since moving, and the occasion felt fit for Supertramp.

Let’s take er for a spin.

A photo posted by Bree Rody-Mantha (@breeganism) on

This is what our kitchen looks like when we recipe test. I swear it’s usually clean.

What our kitchen looks like when we are recipe testing. #vegan #vegansofig #veganfoodie A photo posted by Bree Rody-Mantha (@breeganism) on

The new Vitamix, as you can see, fits in perfectly.

New member of the family.

A photo posted by Bree Rody-Mantha (@breeganism) on

And after all that excitement, kitty fell asleep.

Kitty had too much fun. Kitty high out of his gourd. A photo posted by Bree Rody-Mantha (@breeganism) on

And we ate garlic bread that we made with our new garlic masher.

Gonna die historic on the garlic road.

A photo posted by Bree Rody-Mantha (@breeganism) on

And that, kind folks, is my weekend in Instagrams (or as I call it, Instagrizzitys). On Wednesday you’ll get a glimpse of the mystery recipe Jarrod and I developed after we were inspired at the garlic festival. Trust me, you don’t want to miss this!

Things I’m loving lately: November edition

I can’t believe I sat here racking my brain looking for an idea for a blog post today (I’ll post about my awesome scones on Thursday!) when I remembered that I promised to do an aggregated blog post every month. And since I actually have a small handful of followers, I’d hate to disappoint you! All five of you.

But hey, can I just stop and take a moment to talk about how proud I am that I’ve been able to consistently dedicate myself to a blog for a month? I know, a month doesn’t seem like a lot, but this is better than I’ve done with most blogs, and I think that’s because I’m really “feeling” it this time. I don’t have to force anything or worry about putting on a persona — I’m just putting myself out there. Things are growing organically, and I can’t really complain about that.

Anyway, enough mushy — on to my “love list.”

Obviously, things are cooling down right now (you don’t say!) and yet, I’m doing my best to stand up against November and still be active, productive and happy. Here are some of the things that have been a part of my life lately.

  1. Chimichurri sauce. Ah yes, a zesty, summer steak sauce is perfect for a vegan in November! But okay, hear me out. I’m a woman of contrast. If the weather is cold outside, I’m going to toss some peach salsa on my sandwich and put an umbrella in my coffee. Take that, cold! Chimichurri is a great way to zest up something without it seeming too out-of-season. As for what I like it on, I’m a big fan of glazing it onto roasted corn, cauliflower, in pasta, portobello mushrooms (ESPECIALLY bellos), or, my current kick, which is mixing it in with some mashed avocado and spreading it onto a sandwich. I picked up a bottle of pre-made from Sobey’s, but I had an old co-worker named Leo who was Argentinian and swore I wasn’t having real chimichurri unless I made it myself — this is the recipe I adapted, but with cilantro instead of the parsley (say whaaaa)?!
  2. Pacifica’s Coconut Kiss lip butter in Blissed Out. I’ve said before that I’ve always been afraid to wear dark colours on my lips, but this one really suits me well and seems almost universally flattering because of the mix of warm burgundy with cool blueish undertones. I love Pacifica in general; their Tuscan Blood Orange scent is my go-to for any beauty product.
  3. A Beautiful Mess’s Cinnamon Girl cocktail. I actually haven’t made this yet. But hold up. I didn’t know until just the other night at Hogtown Vegan that Kahlua is vegan. RIGHT?! I can’t explain my thought process on that. Anyway, I love stuff that’s cold in temp but warm in taste, and more importantly, the name is a Neil Young lyric. So… perfect, right? I’m gonna get on making this this weekend.
  4. Scones. Blueberry scones. Raspberry scones. Lemon cranberry scones. Chocolate scones. Peanut butter scones. Daiya scones. I don’t have a favourite recipe (yet) because I’ve only ever actually made scones myself once (last night! HAH!) but they were vegan, gluten-free blueberry scones and I’ve been covering them in Map-O-Spread. Canadian tradition all the way. 🙂
  5. You Are Not So Smart. This podcast has become my favourite thing to listen to while I’m working and having a hard time sorting through all the junk in my head. It very cleverly and astutely identifies a lot of complexes, contradictions and fallacies that we encounter in everyday life and brings in very interesting subject matter experts to discuss them at a highly academic level that never feels like it flies over your head. It helps both bring us all down to Earth but also enlighten and empower us. I think.
  6. Lately, I’ve been interested in making my own hangboard. I’ve seen only a few really well-communicated methods online, but I like the idea of using a chin-up bar and arranging my own holes on it. I’m not a very “handy” girl, but I’m looking to start.
  7. Pantone 15-5309, Pastel Turquoise. I’m going to be painting my room in January, and I’ve decided that I want something that can liven my room up without making me look like a crazy person (my room in high school was bright red to match my angsty teen moods). I’ve always been a huge fan of that kind of light, dusty turquoise shade, which might explain why I always like going to the dentist (yeah, I’m weird, I know). I think I’m going to go with this — it makes me feel calm when I need to but gives me a little boost of energy.
  8. This DIY cork iPad case. This Christmas is going to be all about little pieces of gifts and DIY presents. It’s my first Christmas with my partner, and I’d love to get/make him something that no one else has. He’s a pretty fashionable but low-key dude, so I think this will fit quite well.
  9. A nice simple body scrub. I don’t have issues with dry skin 90% of the time. I have oily/soft skin most places. But two factors wreak havoc on my skin — windy winters (thanks, Toronto, you windy jerk) and climbing. Once in awhile, I like to take a nice long, hot shower (my bathtub stopper doesn’t work, and baths are starting to really weird me out these days) and indulge in a sugar scrub. I don’t believe in buying something you can so easily make. My personal mix is simply equal parts brown sugar and almond milk. I mostly apply it to my elbows and knees, and then work out from there to the surrounding areas. I also follow up with a buffing of Lush’s Ultrabalm.
  10. Alt-J’s new album. I’m going to sound totally pretentious for a second — I don’t really pay attention to current music. I just don’t listen to the radio very much and I’m too stuck in my same-old-same-old music to really find anything new. Fortunately, I was listening to Q the other night and heard Alt-J performing from their new album live in studio and I really enjoyed their stuff. I knew that they were kind of a big deal, but now I see why. Very groovy. Try it out.

Bonus #11: Anything and everything related to Chris Pratt. Oh yeah.