The Friday Five: Things On My Mind

Apparently, I have no shortage of things on my mind lately. Here are five of them.

1. Burnt

I hadn’t watched TV in several weeks, but last week, I had two hours to spare, so I sat and watched Burnt (without falling asleep!). Bradley Cooper speaking French, gorgeous food, and good scenery make for an enjoyable movie as far as I’m concerned. It was worth watching.

2. Ravenclaw

I recently learned that many of my students know what house they belong to…as in Harry Potter house. I had no idea this was a thing, but they taught me about the online quizzes you can take to determine your house. I’m a Ravenclaw, which isn’t that surprising since Ravenclaws are curious and creative people. If you’ve done other personality tests (um…do you know your colour? I’m heavy on the green with a side of yellow), then you might see similarities between these and the Harry Potter house quizzes. I think I have a bit of each of the houses, but to varying degrees. I think I’m certainly Ravenclaw with a side of Slitherin. Am I making any sense to anyone?

3. Mycorrhiza

I attended a biology lecture last week about mycorrhizae fungi which live in a symbiotic relationship with plants. It was absolutely fascinating. These microscopic mycorrhizae can access nutrients far beyond where plant roots can access them; in return, plants provide the mycorrhizae with carbon to live. I learned how mycorrhizae can help to increase the speed of growth in seedlings after major disasters such as a forest fire. That’s the (really) short version of what I learned.

4. Post-MBA Life

I figured out what I’m going to learn about post-MBA. Plants! Yahoo! I’m not intending to do a biology degree or anything crazy like that, but I think I’ll try to audit a course or at least attend biology lectures at the university when I can. See point #3. It inspired this decision.

5. Popcorn

Do you like popcorn? Do you buy it or make it? I’ve had a discussion about popcorn with all of my immediate family members over the last month (I know, I know – mycorrhiza to popcorn – call me crazy). I’ve tried sea salt flavours of Skinny Pop and Boom Chicka Pop, and I’ve enjoyed both. But I like freshly popped popcorn, too. I can’t yet decide which option I like better. And is freshly popped “healthier” than pre-bagged?

The Friday Five: 5 Things on My Mind

My mind has been busy this week. Here’s what has been on it…

1. TD Canada Trust Wait Time

As soon as I noticed my credit card was compromised last weekend, I called TD Visa. There was no real rush, however, since I was on hold (hold!) for 45 minutes. Is this normal? I was expecting to be on hold for maximum 10 minutes. Not fun. It took about 5 minutes to resolve my issue.

2. Credit Card Theft

I’m 99% certain that my credit card info was stolen via an Uber transaction. Not cool. I can’t prove it though, but maybe TD can. What a pain. Saving credit card info online is super convenient at the time of purchase, but incredibly inconvenient when a theft happens. Time to start with a fresh card. And time to stop saving info in my account.

3. Doors

To be honest, I have found door purchasing intimidating. Tiles, fabric, furniture, I can do. But doors? I found it hard. Luckily, Metrie and Northfield Trim and Door (here in Waterloo) have been guiding me through this door makeover project. I’ll let you know how installation goes.

4. Heidi Klum on Ellen

I watched this clip so many times. It made me laugh so much!

5. Essie Nail Polish

Did you know that Essie has launched a new series of nail polish? I learned about this via Carly, and since the “True Love Color” polish was on sale, I picked up “Pinked to Perfection”. It’s an all-in-one nail strengthener and polish, so it’s just what I need. I’m weekend ready!

The Friday Five: 5 Things on My Mind

Here’s what’s been on my mind lately.

1. The other week, I made my way through this Warren Buffett documentary. I enjoyed it. I especially like what Buffett had to say about ethics, public speaking, and reputation. Just look at all the subsidiary companies of Berkshire Hathaway (his company).

2. Over the long weekend, I watched The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (via Amazon Prime), and I loved it! The clothes, the characters, the decor, and the story…yes, I enjoyed all of it!

3. I have 6 more weeks of my last MBA course. I can’t believe it. It’s been an almost 4-year long degree (part-time). I’m pretty excited to get some free time back into my life. I’ve really enjoyed the courses I’ve taken these last two years (e.g., negotiation, mergers & acquisitions), and the struggles I had in the core courses in my first two years are a distant memory. If you’re considering an MBA, I’d recommend you go for it. Then again, I’m a fan of further education regardless of the degree, so my advice is always the same.

4. I popped into the mall the other week looking for a pair of basic black workout tights. Instead, I came home with these colourful tights from Aerie. I don’t wear much colour to work, but I do embrace it for workouts.

5. I made this salmon and spinach pasta last week (with my fresh pasta, of course!), and it was delicious (and quick and easy, too). I usually go for classic pasta with tomato sauce, so I really switched things up this time!

What’s been on your mind?

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Personal: 5 Things on My Mind

These are five things that have been on my mind lately.

1. Outlander. I’ve continued to watch Outlander, and I recently finished season 2. Oh my goodness – I loved the episodes set in France so much! But I also continued to enjoy all the scenes set in the Scottish highlands. And now I am adding Scotland to my travel goals because it looks just so beautiful (and, yes, I know that some scenes weren’t shot in Scotland). I came across real-life photos of the two main characters – Jamie Fraser played by Sam Heughan and Claire Fraser played by Catriona Balfe – and I was surprised. I just imagined that they would look exactly the way they do in Outlander. But they don’t. And seeing them in modern clothes was kind of surprising. p.s. I can’t be the only one who has a crush on Jamie Fraser, right?

2. Barre. I’m continuing with barre classes this month. I have loved every class that I have attended. I think it’s mostly because the music playlists are fantastic! I just feel like singing and dancing the whole time (instead of doing planks for way too long). Have you tried a barre class? What do you think?

3. Grocery delivery. Have you ever had your groceries delivered right to your door? I haven’t, but just today two friends (at separate times in the day) talked to me about it and I received news about Instacart, which is a same-day grocery delivery service brought to us by the Real Canadian Superstore and Zehrs (via Loblaw Companies Ltd.). How’s that for timing? Grocery delivery was today’s hot topic! Apparently Instacart has already been offered in Toronto, but it has launched in the Kitchener-Waterloo, Cambridge, and Guelph regions today.

And here’s a bonus for you – first time users can enter the code HIKITCHENER (3/31/18 expiration) at checkout to get $20 off an order of $35 or more, plus a free first time delivery.

4. Tumeric. What does everyone know about tumeric? I don’t know anything about it, but it has come up multiple times in my life in the last month, and I feel like I need to do some research about the benefits of this spice. One of the cafés in town (DVLB) has this tumeric warming tea that I really enjoy. And this weekend in Grey County, I learned about elixirs with tumeric in them that help with fighting winter illness. Then I did a quick Google search and found this list of benefits of tumeric tea. Thoughts?

5. Travel + People. Travel is often on my mind. This past weekend, I had the chance to work with Grey County to explore new-to-me parts of Ontario (you may have followed along on Instagram with #WhiteCabanaGoesToGreyCounty). My posts are definitely still in draft form, but you’ll see them on the blog over the next couple of weeks. For now though, I have been thinking about all the people I met on my 3-day journey. I feel lucky to have come across such happy, welcoming, and interesting people because these people made my trip that much more rich, informative, and fun. Some people. You know? You just can’t help but be thankful your paths have crossed! Who’s with me?

Personal : 7 Things on My Mind

These seven things have been on my mind lately.

1. Slippery Stairs

I had tears in my eyes from laughing so much from watching slippery stairs videos.

2. Starfish Baby

This video of a baby starfish made me laugh, too.

3. Food & Drink Magazine

LCBO’s Food & Drink magazine – holiday edition – really gets me in the spirit. The recipes look just too good! I don’t yet know what I want to try making, but it’ll be something!

4. Pine Sol

Do you take the advice of your favourite bloggers? I do. And if Erica Cook of Moth Design puts her stamp of approval on something, I especially take note. She has discussed cleaning on her blog in the past, and most recently, she sang the praises of Pine-Sol. So what did I do? I added a jug on Pine Sol to my shopping cart the last time I was at the grocery store. For the first time in my life, I bought Pine Sol.

Now, I normally mop my floors with hot water and white vinegar. This has worked out well in my opinion, but I’m always happy to try something new. So I bought the purple Pine Sol and gave it a try. I was pleased. The scent was pleasant, and my floors looked clean. I also took Erica’s suggestion and put a little bit of Pine Sol down all of my sink drains, and I feel like this small effort makes a difference for my pipes” overall cleanliness.

5. Nashville

I’m going to Nashville soon. I have barely done any travel research! Any recommendations? As per usual, my go-to spot for a guide was Design*Sponge. I just love the city guides that Grace and her team review and post. (Side note – Did you know I wrote one for the Waterloo region?)

6. Barre Workouts

A friend and I recently signed up for barre workout classes. These sessions really prove to me that I’m not a delicate ballerina. Ha ha. They’ve been fun so far, and it’s been nice to have something new to do (as if I needed anything new in my life right now!?).

7. Taylor Swift

Am I too old to listen – and enjoy – Taylor Swift’s music? Nope. Don’t think so. I have had  Reputation on repeat.

Personal: 5 Things on My Mind

Here’s today’s list of things that have been on my mind lately.

Starbucks Rewards

Do you collect them? I do. I barely notice them, but then, when I get an email saying that I’ve earned a reward, I get happy. I usually stock-pile my rewards. Then, when I’m having a crappy day or I don’t feel like making lunch or I’m out with a friend, I can treat myself (or us!). It’s a little welcome bonus.

Essie Gel Setter Top Coat

I’m not very into beauty products, but I’ve been using this top coat for about a year now, and it’s amazing. I also use the Essie Grow Stronger base coat, and I’m sure the combination of these two polishes helps to make my nails shiny and strong.

Pop-Up Windows

Pop-up windows on websites annoy the heck out of me. Is there a way to make them permanently disappear?

Bird Seed

Does anyone have any recommendations for bird seed that actually attracts birds? I keep buying the blocks of seeds, but the birds aren’t coming.

L.L.Bean Boots

I caved. A pair of classic, 6″ L.L.Bean boots are on their way to my house. I took advantage of a 25% sale and clicked buy. I was obviously influenced by bloggers who love them (talking about Rox-Anne and Carly!), and while I would have preferred them in an all-black version, they have such a strong reputation (and following) that I’m hoping I’ll make use of them on my fall and winter walks, even though they’re a touch more “New England prep” than my usual style. I can’t believe how many L.L.Bean Boot buying guides are floating around the internet. Google it. It’s nuts!

Personal: 6 Things on my Mind

A couple of weeks ago, I shared 5 things on my mind. It was a text-heavy post (in that there were no photos), and I actually quite liked the change of scene. You? Today, I have 6 more random thoughts to share.


It’s awful. It’s heartbreaking. And it happens to the nicest, best, kindest people. Why? Life isn’t so fair sometimes, is it?

Thanks again for working together to raise funds and awareness for breast cancer research via my #WhiteCabanaWearsPink efforts. Yesterday, I made a donation to the Metastatic Breast Cancer Fund.


I brought Halloween treats to my students yesterday. They clapped when I told them. I thought that was awesome. They seemed to appreciate the small gesture, and I think it’s fun that adult students still get excited about candy treats. It’s the little things in life, right?


Speaking of candy, I gave it out to about a dozen or so kids in my neighbourhood last night. Everyone was in such a cheery mood. When I really think about trick-or-treating, it is kind of strange. Getting candy from neighbours wearing funny outfits? But it is amusing, and the kiddies are just so excited when you open the door and dole out candy.

Breakfast with Strangers

I met a friend for breakfast at Kitchener Market last weekend, and, as friends do, we chatted about all sorts of things. When a man and his son opted to share our table (as KW people do), we started a group conversation. It was such a nice welcome. I mean, who talks to strangers these days? We weren’t glued to our phones. We were in conversation. So simple. So enjoyable.


I’m headed to a masquerade event this weekend. It was fun picking out just the right mask. Guess what? It’s not white. (It’s black!)


It’s November 1st today, which means it’s the official start of Movember. This is a month-long campaign (and year-long, too!) that raises money and awareness for prostate cancer and men’s health.