On the Road Again… Destination New Zealand


Travel and adventure are always on the table in my life. Discovering new places and learning new things is a passion that will never fade. While visiting different places is always fun, I also love living in a new place that’s different to what I’m used to. So far, I have the contrast of Canada and Japan, but now we’re throwing New Zealand into the mix!

I’ll share with you my experiences and artistic discoveries from in and around New Zealand. Hopefully while we’re here, we’ll be able to travel to other destinations like Australia, Fiji, Samoa, Cook Islands, and anywhere else that strikes our fancy.

I regularly love to read adventures and travel stories from different travel blogs. The stories and beautiful photography make me want to roam around from one place to another, so when I’m not actually traveling to a new place, I’m definitely planning the next trip.

If you are looking for some travel inspiration, make sure to check out some of my favourite bloggers:


If you have any favourite travel writers/bloggers, please let me know by leaving a comment below!  Would love to read about their journeys around the world.

The Beginning of a New Business?

I love Etsy and have always wanted to start up my own Etsy shop, but I’m not sure how I should go about it. There are also tons of other sites like Etsy that seem good too.

I love to make many different things, whether it’s with paper, fabric, wood, plastics….anything. I would love to share my handmade things with others, but don’t have much of an idea how to go about it.

Do any of you sell products online? What advice do you have for someone who wants to dive in, but doesn’t know where to start?

Please comment below and let me know what you think!



The Game is On! The Renewed Love of Sherlock Holmes

sherlocksI am a big Sherlock Holmes fan, even though I have not read all of the novels and short stories yet. The renewed popularity of Sherlock Holmes was sparked by the 2009 movie Sherlock Holmes, starring the charismatic Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law. Since the movie came out, there has been a second movie (a third is in talks) and two TV series, Elementary (US) and Sherlock (UK). I’ve seen them all and I’m now curious to watch some of the older shows from the 80’s just to see what they were like.

sherlock homes movie

I love the Guy Ritchie movies and both TV series because they each have their own take on the stories and characters from the original Sir Arthur Conan Doyle stories. The Sherlock movies are both set in the 1880’s like the books, the British TV series Sherlock is a mix of 1800’s and 2000’s fashion styles and sets, and the US series Elementary is set in the 2000’s, though there are many character traits, fashion designs and set pieces that go back to the 1800’s.

Sherlock UK

I would love to read the whole collection to see which adaptation has elements closest to the original. Of course, I believe Elementary is the farthest from it, especially since there are some strong female characters playing male roles, I think there might be a few things placed as an homage to the original. Personally, I like this modern twist to the story, but there are many people who are appalled by the fact that Dr. Watson in the show is played by a woman.


I’d like to hear your opinions about the movies or shows!  Comment below to let me know what you think.

Do you like the modern styles or prefer to keep to the original stories?


Books – The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin

Like many people out there, I have ups and downs in emotions, and lately I’ve noticed that I tend to focus more on the negatives rather than finding something positive in every day. Unlike people who are generally bubbly and positive, I’m naturally a slightly more negative/skeptical person…. but one who would like to change for the better!

As a way to create a happier me, I created some simple New Year’s resolutions that are designed to help me become healthier both physically and mentally. I’m always on the look out for different ways to relax, feel happier and change negative attitudes -or let go of negative things.


You can get the Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin on Amazon.

I started reading The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin.

I thought it would be an interesting read, and possibly give me different ideas to become a happier and more positive person. So far, I find her research quite interesting and there are many simple everyday things that anyone can do to change their mindset and live a happier/more positive life. I’ve tried a few things so far and they have motivated me to continue on my own path to happiness.

How Do You Relax?

I’ve asked many people what they like to do to relax and I’ve gotten quite a number of responses. Here are a few to give you an idea of what others do to relax:

“Tea is a very good way to relax any time or place. If you feel stressed at work, or are at home with nothing to do, making a cup of tea and enjoying it (emphasis on enjoying) can really help. Tea is also good accompanied with watching TV, music, laying in bed, reading and much more!”

“Sit or walk around a place that is secluded.”

“Knitting then give it all away to a charity to help other people.”

“Take the dogs out for a long walk in a park or along the beach.”

“Take a bubble bath and read a good book.”

“Listen to music, enjoy a glass of wine and write poetry.”

“When my husband gets home, he will take over taking care of the kids. That’s when I turn on my favorite music and take a long hot shower.”

Before reading over the responses, I expected people to suggest retreats, spa visits, exotic holidays or other expensive options. I quickly realized that most people just want to enjoy simple everyday pleasures. All of these comments made me realize that I too neglect to enjoy simple little things in life. I drink lots of tea, read books, listen to music but rarely sit back to really enjoy it.  This must change.

I’ll keep tracking my progress and hope to get more tips from all of you!

What are you doing to be happier/healthier each day?


Use Japanese Loose Leaf Tea Bags for Cooking

I purchased these tea bags from Japan and absolutely love them! You can buy empty tea bags that you fill up with loose leaf teas instead of using tea infusers. I find the bags to be better for teas since infusers tend to let small bits of tea through.

Japanese loose leaf tea bagsI also love these bags for infusing flavours when cooking soups. I love to use dried bay leaves and coriander in soups, but I don’t like biting into them when I eat the soups, so I place them in the tea bags and place it in the pot of soup. Everything stays in the bag as the soup boils, and when it’s done, I just scoop the bag out and that’s it!

Japanese tea bags for cooking

I’m sure there are different variations of these tea bags available in specialty tea shops, but I highly recommend these Japanese ones. They are the best!  You can find some on Amazon here.

Winter in Canada 2014

This winter has been exceptionally cold and snowy…. basically as Winter in Canada should be (according to the rest of the world).

Since the season feels VERY long, I like to break it up by doing fun things in the snow. If all you ever do it commute from home to work, then it really brings you down (and can make you quite grumpy after a few months. I’ve found, if you find something fun to do, and share it with good company, the season is great!

Here are a few photos from this year (so far):

The Distillery Christmas Market

The Distillery – warm up stations

Beer can coated in ice

More ice

Beautiful blanket of snow

Beautiful blanket of snow

A snow trail on a frozen lake.


Frozen kayaks

Lovely wintery painting

Swans and ducks enjoying the sun.