Sunday, December 31, 2006

2006 Book LIst

  • The Prince
    Nicollo Machiavelli 2006.12.08

  • Last Chance to See
    Douglas Adams 2006.11.04

  • The Brothers Karamazov
    Fyodor Dostoyevsky 2006.10.29

  • Not a big list, but I was stuck on The Brothers Karamazov for most of the year...

    Wednesday, December 20, 2006

    I was having trouble getting on to on the weekend so I haven't updated in a while.

    We've attended a bunch of Christmas parties in the last few days. On Saturday night was the VPC Christmas dinner. It's for all the management at the press centre, and it's usually really well done. It's one of the few parties that still invites partners. We met up with Ram and Teresa, and cabbed it from their house. Any time you're out with Ram, it's a big drinking night, and this was no exception. It was at an italian banquet hall on Highway 27 north of 7. The food was great -- three courses, I had the caesar salad, porcini risotto, and veal picatta. It was an open bar and we seemed to end up near the bar having shooters most of the night. We were doing okay until Glenn had us try the grappa. I'm still acquiring a taste for that.

    The VPC party usually winds down around 11pm so we joined Ram and Teresa at a bar near Yonge and Eglinton (the one right beside Spacco's). Had a Keith's and talked with John (his company did the tiling at our house). We're still waiting for the backsplash in the kitchen to be grouted and I keep forgetting to bug him. Got Rob's phone number (I think he's the supervisor of the crew). We headed home around 1ish.

    On Monday there were a couple of parties. My group (about 10 of us) went out for lunch at Houston's. I had a 14oz prime rib, and some beers. Our department dinner was at 5:30pm (and it was a cash bar), so the plan was to go for lunch and eventually find our way to the dinner restaurant. Dinner was pretty good, although only four hours after lunch, so I was really stuffed. It was Monday night and after dinner, some people wanted to watch the NFL game, so we found our way to the Keg at York and Adelaide. I got home around midnight.

    So after all the partying, I thought I would take it easy on Tuesday night. However, Tanya and Tony had their first kid, Natasha, on Monday afternoon (7pounds, 9 ounces), and so we went to see them at St. Mike's. Everyone was doing well, Tanya looked really relaxed and not at all like she had just had a baby. Marissa and Bernice were also there, and we hadn't seen them in a while, so we all headed to the Flatiron for a drink or two.

    Here's some pictures of our tree:

    We've been looking for a cool angel for the top of the tree, and I found this one for $7.20 at Linens and Things! Every year Heather and I buy an ornament for each other, and the two doves on the turtle is the one I got for Heather this year (our 2nd Christmas -- two turtle doves, get it?)

    Well I should go cook dinner. I'm trying to make the porcini risotto and veal picatta like we had on Saturday night.

    Sunday, December 10, 2006

    Here's a couple pics from Leo's visit on Saturday:

    We decorated our tree on Friday night, and it looks quite good. Maricar got it for us from a lot outside the city (near where she works). It's a 9' balsam fir, and it fits perfectly in the front corner of the living room. Unfortunately there's no presents yet under the tree with my name on it.

    Last night Maricar had a big dinner party. It was six courses with a wine pairing for each course. Three courses (& wine pairings) were from the LCBO website, and the wine matched really well. It was a lot of fun, and I was stuffed at the end of the night.

    Heather and I walked around Queen St E this afternoon, taking advantage of the nice weather (about 8C and sunny). Had lunch at Cafe Vert, which was really good. We were searching for a burger place, but the first couple places were closed on Sundays, so we ended up there. There was a sign on Reliable Fish'n'chips that it's going to be on HGTV's Restaurant Makeover, so it was closed. After we browsed for a star to top the tree, but didn't find anything. However, we did stop into a few new stores (Pentimento, and We) that were pretty cool. The strip between Eye Spy and Okay Okay is now completely full of stores -- most of them newly opened in the last year.

    Just watching the Cowboys-Saints game. I've never seen Reggie Bush play before, he looks pretty good. Anyways, going to watch the rest of the game.

    Sunday, December 03, 2006

    We had a great time at Wanderlust on Thursday night. This was the street festival organized by the businesses on Queen E, between Pape and Jones. Maricar and Trishia's brother Robin joined us. We started around 8pm at Toast (had appetizers and wine), and worked our way east. Had some complimentary drinks and snacks -- specialty coffees at Ethel, chai liqueur at Eye Spy (we'll have to look for this at the LCBO), wine tastings at Wild Thyme, fluke at Sushi Marche. By then it was 10pm, the end of the festival. Had great buttered rum drinks at Okay Okay, then pizza and a pitcher of Keiths at Stratenger's and finally some beer at Maricar's (she's into Tuborg Gold after having it at the beer festival).

    Despite the rain, there was a really good turnout. Most stores were full of people. From our count, more than half the participating stores have opened in the last year (when we moved here), including two that had their opening for Wanderlust. It reminded me of the vibe at the first Lollapalooza -- no one knew what to expect because it was the first one, but afterward everyone was talking about it. (Although in this case, "everyone" was just the neighbourhood). Anyways I hope they have it again next year.

    The variety drinks had hangover written all over it, but the pizza helped out. I only worked a half day on Friday because Heather and I went to Scholar's Choice for their sale on December 1st. Took the opportunity to take Heather to the pizza place in Fortino's up at Hwy 400 & 7 (it's near VPC and I go there for lunch on occasion). It's the best stone-oven pizza in Toronto. Then onto Scholar's Choice where we completed most of our Christmas shopping (it's a great place for children's gifts).

    We watched the federal Liberal's leadership convention on Friday evening and most of Saturday. It was quite interesting, especially the Saturday. Heather and I had both felt Stephane Dion could win back in the summer. I think he's a good choice. We wrote our Christmas cards in between the convention happenings.

    I just figured out that Heather and I moved into our house exactly one year ago today! Happy anniversary to the house!