Marketplace: Costco Favourites

We got our Costco membership soon after we moved in together. I wanted to see if the Costco experience would help with our food budget Overall, I think it has. It’s quite a task to shop there as it’s definitely more time-consuming than a trip to a small grocery store, and loading everything in to the car and then out of the house is a workout. Because of these reasons, I try to limit my trips to every 6 weeks or so, and then I stock up on our favourites. What are they, you ask? Read on!

I also tend to pick up beef, chicken, frozen shrimp, Balderson cheddar, Rao pizza sauce (a new addition), spices, and Cascade. I look for sales on other items we might need like canned tuna and olive oil.

We’ve also bought random things like a wet/dry vac (how’d we live without one?) and my hydrangea plants. One of my favourite Costco purchases of all time has to be my retractable hose.

I’d love to know your Costco recommendations, so please share a comment.

p.s. This was not a sponsored post. But maybe it should have been!

Travel: More Places to Stay in Paris

I came across more beautiful vacation rental apartments in Paris via Habitat Parisien, so I have to share (and bookmark this post for a future trip!).

This two bedroom apartment is near the Champs Elysée and the ever-so-chic Faubourg-Saint Honoré (8th arr.).

Over by the Louvre (1st arr.), you’ll find this bright apartment that accommodates four people.

And just look at this artful apartment by the Centre Pompidou in the Marais (4th arr.).

The Friday Five: Things On My Mind

Here are a few things that are on my mind.

  1. Read. I’m listening to Stanley Tucci’s Taste: My Life Through Food, and I can’t help but think – hey, why haven’t I written such a book? There are so many similarities between my family and his, and the recipes he shares are ones that I grew up with, and that I’m starting to try on my own, too. I’m enjoying the audio book version mostly because he reads it. I also read The Paris Library by Janet Skeslien Charles, which I absolutely enjoyed. It is based on the true story of the librarians of The American Library in Paris during WWII.
  2. Learn. Learn about Inuit facial expressions at Shina Nova.
  3. Act. Looking for ways to help one another, be kind, pay it forward? Read through the posts at Random Acts of Kindness.
  4. Write. Take a few minutes to write your future self an email at It’ll be delivered at a future date of your choosing.
  5. Watch. We went to see Chicago at the Stratford Festival a couple of weeks ago, and it was amazing. I’m so glad the Festival has reopened.

Personal: May Update of My 2022 Goals

This is actually my April and May update, since I was in France at the end of April, and pre-writing an updated listed slipped my mind. Here is where things stand in terms of my 2022 goals.

  1. Write with my fountain pen. No. Unfortunately, my fountain pen broke, and I haven’t yet gone to the pen store to get it replaced/fixed.
  2. Complete house projects. Yes. In the powder room, everything is done except for the delayed delivery of the toilet roll holder. In the kitchen, our sink and faucet have arrived, so I’m sorting out counter top options. My beau installed a new pendant over the island, which I love. The refresh in another bathroom is nearly complete, too. I’m waiting on the delayed delivery of two hooks. In that room, we painted, installed new trim, installed new lights, updated some electrical, and upgraded the accessories. We also hired a team to clean our windows inside and out, and what an amazing difference this has made! Outside, we planted our first veggie garden. Grow, little veggies, grow!
  3. Stay active. Sort of. We walked a lot in France, and I seem to be walking a decent amount every day at work. Beyond walking, nothing else is happening in the “stay active” department.
  4. Host people. Yes. While we didn’t have a May music night, we’ve had people drop-in regularly for a coffee, meal, or a chat. We love having people fill our home with laughter and stories.
  5. Travel. Yes! Hooray! A week in France in April did me good! C’est si bon!
  6. Read more. Sort of. I have paused on audio books, but I’ll get back into them shortly. I’m reading The Paris Library by Janet Skeslien Charles, and countless academic pieces for work.
  7. Tame garbage. Reduce waste. Sort of. I’m still making slight improvements, but nothing worth writing about. I find this to be a challenge. The packaging that everything comes in is hard to get around.
  8. Floss regularly. Yes. Daily. My dental hygienist didn’t give me as much praise as I was hoping she would, but I continue to floss daily. Easy peasy.
  9. Walk regularly. Yes. See number 3.
  10. Stop procrastinating. Yes. Especially with work. I am taking on a new role at work soon, and my workload has already increased. I feel like I’ve been forced to decrease my procrasinating.
  11. Have fun! Yes! April and May were both great months overall. I saw friends and family regularly, and I had great catch-up phone calls with faraway friends. At work, it’s been great to see colleagues in person. The sunshine and warmth has also increased my positive attitude!

Previous updates: January, February, March.

Travel: How to Spend Two Days in Nice

We arrived in Nice late at night after a relaxing and scenic TGV train ride from Paris. We knew we wanted our time in the south to be more relaxed than our time sightseeing in Paris, so we spent a good amount of time at the beach. While the Mediterranean was still too cold for me, the beach was perfect. It felt so good to put on sunscreen, let me tell you!

Here’s how we spent our time in Nice and the surrounding area.

Day 1: The Beach & Old Town

Our day was long and relaxed. It was just a perfect day in the sun. We spent most of it laying around on the beach, but we also walked around old town, ate a late leisurely lunch, and toured the flower and food market.

Day 2: Cannes, Monaco, & Ventimiglia

We rented a convertible Mini Cooper for the day, which was a smart decision! We picked it up at the airport, so we could conveniently return it at the airport for our departure the next day. We drove to Cannes first where we hung out at the beach and window shopped along the main street with all the luxury stores. I also did a bit of shopping on my own while the boys stayed at the beach. We had an afternoon gelato before jumping into the car and driving to Monaco. We loved our short time in Monaco. We ogled at all the luxury vehicles, walked around to see the stunning yachts, and had a few minutes of fun at the Monte Carlo Casino.

From Monaco, we decided to take a quick trip to Italy for dinner. We stopped at a seaside restaurant across the border in Ventimiglia, and I ate the most delicious pasta alla vongole (pasta with clams) that reminded me of the amazing meal I had in Rimini years ago.