(or: What I Did This Summer)
Although fall is my favourite season (you can pry my sweaters, boots, and pumpkin scented products out of my cold, dead hands) (weirdly, though, I have no love for the PSL), I have to admit that this summer was pretty great. It was quite relaxing, and I got to spend a lot of quality time with my friends and family.
Other than that quality time (which is clearly the best part of any season), here are the top five things I loved this summer, in no particular order:
My bullet journal is full of faux-calligraphy that I learned using this tutorial from Boho Berry, but I’d never actually used a brush pen for lettering. One day, while I was absentmindedly scrolling through Instagram in the back of an Uber, I saw the most beautiful brush lettering. When I clicked on the account to see more, I saw that she (Sylvia of ViaCalligraphy) was running a workshop the following month. Without a second thought, I immediately registered for the course and started counting down the days.
I had really high expectations for the workshop, and Sylvia somehow surpassed them. In just two hours she taught us the basics of brush lettering, providing individualized feedback and assistance to everyone in the group. As part of the fee for the workshop, you also receive two pens, a workbook, and a pad of tracing paper for you to practice on. If you’re in the Toronto area, keep an eye on her page on Eventbrite to sign up for one of her workshops (all the ones currently scheduled are sold out).
I know I already wrote about it recently, but I love my Endy so much that it really was one of the highlights of my summer! If you want to read more about it, check out my previous post (which includes a link to get $50 off if you choose to purchase one).
Again, this is one that I already wrote about, but it really was a highlight. I love having my morning coffee out here on nice days, and it’s a great place to catch up with friends. Recently, I even had one of my best friends over for brunch out there (which we ordered in from my new favourite, Boom Breakfast & Co).
High tea was one of those things that I’d always wanted to do, but I’d never gotten around to it. So, I was super excited when someone (Mere & Fiona: I can’t remember which one of you it was!) suggested it for our BFF summer visit. We considered a few places before settling on the Emporium in New Dundee.
Of the two options that they offer, we chose the Regular High Tea (the Indulgence one sounds amazing, but we were worried that it would be too much food). Of all of the delicious food we had, the scones and the butter tarts were the real standouts for me (I’m salivating just remembering them!). The tea selection was also fantastic, albeit slightly overwhelming (only because everything sounded good). I chose the Chocolate Banana Parfait, which sounds really weird but I swear to you it’s delicious. (I loved it so much that I actually just placed an order online after giving up hope of finding it in a grocery store. Thank you, internet!)
My mom and I spent the first few days of July in Collingwood at the Westin in Blue Mountain (the picture above was the view from our balcony). We spent one of the days at the iwa spa getting pampered with massages, facials, and manicures/pedicures. Although all of the services were great, the highlight for me was the facial, which was the first one I ever had. My skin has never been as smooth and glowy as it was afterward, and I loved the chill atmosphere in their new facial lounge.
And, to finish the post, a side story about facials because I always think of this whenever the topic comes up: years ago, my then-boyfriend had been hinting that there would be a birthday surprise for me. Because I’m impatient and just generally the worst, I snooped on his computer looking for clues when he was out of the room. I was super excited when I saw something about “facials” in his browser history, thinking that I’d get to go to a spa. When I clicked on the link… well, let’s just say that it had nothing to do with spas or my birthday.
That, my friends, is why you don’t snoop.
(Oh, and in case you’re curious: the surprise was that he was taking me away for the weekend.)