2020…next!!! A quick review on how we survived.

2020…next!!! A quick review on how we survived. 

Well 2020 was 12 months with a decades worth of stuff jammed packed into it. 
It included apocalyptic stuff of nightmares really. It still boggles my mind when I think of how the world seems to have stopped turning….oh shoot, I hope I didn’t just jinx us? The world can’t really stop turning… right???!!

I think we need to send 2020 off quietly, respectfully and properly, as to not piss it off. This post doesn’t include any big plans, hopes or dreams for 2021; no, let’s not rock the boat. 

Instead let’s take a quick look back at how things changed and how we coped and managed to stay connected and somewhat sane…ish. 

Grooming

Turns out during a global pandemic, grooming is the first thing to go. Jeans and any kind of none stretchy pants were deemed none essential early on. I remember years and years ago, there was a debate at work; were leggings pants? We decided that leggings were not pants, wow we were so wrong on that one. Turns out leggings are appropriate for any and all occasions. 

While locked in our homes for months some of us let our hair grow, some of us let our roots grow out, while others recruited their significant others to cut and or dye their hair. My friend “made” her bf give her highlights, he did a great job, but was sooo nervous, oh the pressure on his shoulders!!! 

I dyed my hair pink, it looked good for two whole days until I washed it and then looked yucky and lasted longer than it was supposed to. 

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 28d61e24-ad24-4232-a7ae-5e6a013f83a6.jpeg

I started “harassing” my hairdresser around week 7th or 8th of lockdown. It turns out my mental state is directly connected to my roots, who knew? Long story short, I was her first client when salons were allowed to re-open. 

My hair was down to my elbows; it needed of a good cut, and by good cut, I mean I cut a good ten inches off. Side note, want it long again, there is no winning. 

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 555bbb39-b330-4d3b-84b3-b60a15d585c3.jpeg

On the male side, shaving became redundant, beards have never been more popular. 

Zooming

Zoom became part of our lives this past year. It was a way for us to stay connected. My girlfriend, Nadine, set up weekly Zoom calls for us. I have to admin that I was a bit reluctant at first to jump on the Zoom train, but they turned out to be so much fun once we got the hang of them. 

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 6cbd22f7-20d5-4f00-9af2-e1cff9aa3424.jpeg

I may get in trouble for posting this pic, but it makes me laugh every time I see it. This was our eighties side ponytail walk down memory lane. What I loved about our calls is that we didn’t just sit there and chat, we would get up and leave, come back, walked around and showed dumb stuff off, they were our lifeline to each other. 

Eating 

If we wanted to sum up 2020 in one photo, it would be a pic of a banana bread; a close second would be a loaf of sourdough bread, lol. We cooked and baked, like a lot! The local supermarkets in my area were pretty well stocked, until you went down the baking aisle; flour and chocolate chips were in high demand! 

Ordering takeout this year became a show of support and solidarity for local restaurants. I felt it was part of my civic duty to order takeout a few times a week. 

One of the great things, yes there were a few, is that families were forced to spend time together. Family meals and old school board games have made a big comeback. 

Exercising 

Social media was full of people living their best, healthiest lives, and that was awesome…for them!! Some of us, maybe most of us, struggled, I was one of those. Covid 19 became the new freshman 15 and it wasn’t limited to freshman apparently.  

What helped me, somewhat balance the copious amounts of chocolate I was consuming, was that I was able to meet up with two of my bffs to walk, while socially distancing of course. Our biggest challenge was that one of us is a low talker, lol. Being outside is/was so therapeutic, just breathing fresh air helped manage our moods.

On every walk I took a selfie when we reached our turnaround point. I deleted most of the pics and now I wish I would have kept them all, here are a few that I saved. 


By the spring bicycles were hot items, I bought this pretty pink one.


It was really weird cruising downtown, it was a ghost town. I half expected a zombie to pop out and chase me down Queen Street.

Celebrating

We found a special way to celebrate birthdays this year; birthday car parades became a thing. I was blessed to have one in my honor and it was way more meaningful than one might think. I’ve never felt so close to my friends even though I couldn’t hug them. Side note, my brother, who was in my bubble, came out of his car and gave me a hug, since I was standing there crying, six feet away from everyone. Which made me cry even more since he isn’t a big hugger, so it was extra special.

1E189624-0F92-432F-BF5F-F529BE8D69AE

This pic below, was a special socially distant birthday dinner for two in a garage, loved it!! Side note, having to do things differently sometimes makes them feel more special. Maybe it’s because it takes a bit more effort, which shows how much we are loved?


One of the things that broke my heart was that the Class of 2020 was robbed of all the normal celebrations that we’ve all gotten to experience. No proms, no big graduation ceremonies or parties. The pic below is of my nephew leaving his high school experience behind.

For his graduation he was allowed to have four people in attendance. We arrived, they called his name, he walked on stage, then walked out. It took less than 5 minutes. We were so proud of him, yet felt sad for him at the same time.

I need to say that his generation of supposed “snowflakes” are far tougher than they have been given credit for. Love you so much Jack and so proud of you!!!

This pic below was a small backyard family gathering for my bff’s daughter, who also graduated this year. We took a quick 2020 selfie; by June we were allowed to gather in small groups.

1574D31A-079B-46D9-8E0A-100BB612240B

Giving

2020 showed us the importance of communities and how we are responsible to help each other. My coworkers and I organized a food drive parade as a way to give back to our community. Even though most of us, at the time, were temporarily laid off, we felt fortunate that we would have jobs to return to. Not everyone had that sense of security.

We were hoping for 30 cars, we lost count at 150 cars. I think most of those who participated would admit that we got more out of it than we feel we gave? People were hanging out of their car windows talking to each other. Some were gathered on the grass or road catching up while respecting social distancing. It was sooooo nice to see each other.

With the vaccine being rolled out, let’s dare to hope that 2021 will be kinder to all of us. But in the meantime and moving forward we need to continue to shop local, support and be kind to each other; in brief, don’t be an asshole! lol

Thank you for reading and sharing.

muah!

Liette

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is d51b4d1e-7b5b-4acb-9c12-d18440cc145a.jpeg

Shop Local – Gusto Italian Grill & Bar

Shop Local – Gusto Italian Grill & Bar

This is the first in a series of posts that I hope to do more of, the goal is to highlight locally owned businesses. If you don’t live in my area, you may as well keep reading since you’ve already started, lol.

This week I have a challenge for you. The challenge is for you to find a restaurant, in your area, that is now offering weekly grocery boxes and buy one!

What I love the most about this idea is that we can directly and immediately help support our local restaurants, who are working their butts off to keep the lights on in these crazy times.

The other thing I love about this idea is that, I don’t know about you, but I am getting pretty sick of my own cooking! I am running out of ideas on what to cook, I am always using the same spices so after awhile everything starts to taste the same. Getting a grocery box forces you to think outside the box; sorry, I couldn’t resist, lol.

I am going to make it really easy for my fellow Monctonians by suggesting that you give Gusto Fresh Market Boxes a try. From Judson’s, to Boomerang’s to City Grill to Gusto’s, Brett Judson has been in business on Westmorland Street in downtown Moncton for decades!!! And he and his team have always supported our community. Side Note – In March when the lock down first started, he donated hundred and hundreds of pieces of cheesecakes to both regional hospitals for their frontline workers.

Guylaine showing off her newly painted exterior, in addition to being responsible for the décor inside and outside, she also leads Gusto’s Fresh Market Program.


During the initial shutdown, in the spring, Gusto started offering curbside pick up in order to compensate for the loss of income caused by the in-dining restrictions; all restaurants have had to reduce the number of tables in order to follow the social distancing rules. This has been a huge hardship on all restaurants and bars.

The idea of offering Grocery or Market Boxes is trending in most cities; it’s a way for restaurants to make up for some of the business that they are losing on a daily basis because they can no longer fill their restaurants with patrons.

Gusto’s Fresh Market Boxes are an amazing value! They are different from week to week, this week’s box contents are listed below. (for the week of Nov 30 to Dec 4). Anyone who knows Brett knows that you never leave his home or his restaurant hungry, the same can be said for Gusto’s boxes. They are jam packed with high quality products and meats!


I’ve already ordered my box for this Saturday, none of these items are on my regular boring rotation, I am excited to pick it up! This would also make a perfect holiday gift or if you someone in your family or a close friend lost their job due to Covid buy them a box!!

Last week, I got the opportunity to help the Gusto team prepare the boxes. I was the top labeler and I think it’s safe to say that I nailed it!! Ok, full disclosure, their Fresh Market goods are in bags and not boxes, but bags are better for the environment, says me. Plus Fresh Market Bags, doesn’t sound as snazzy.

That’s me, bottom left, taking my job very seriously!! I had a very efficient system set up, lol.


How can you order?

You can place your order directly on their website: http://www.gustoitaliangrill.ca Orders must be received by 5pm on Thursdays, box pick ups are Saturdays from 10am to 12pm. Just pull into the Gusto parking lot, Guylaine and staff will be there ready to assist you. Pop your trunk and they will place your items in your car for you.

One happy Gusto customer picking up his grocery box. I actually work with him and funny story, he didn’t have an issue posing for this pic, but as you can see he is hiding his license plate. He was in an accident with a moose and was driving this rental with Ontario plates. If you are from the former Atlantic Bubble, you know why he was trying to hide his pate, lol.

Thank you for reading, I will finish with a mini rant, similar to my mini rant in my previous post. Please be mindful that our local restaurants, bars and businesses have always been the first ones we, the community, turns to for team sponsorships, school fundraisers… and they have always been supportive; they now need our help, so it’s our turn to give back and wow what a big sacrifice for us, to eat amazingly good food, seriously poor us!!

If you are fortunate enough to not have had your job or paycheck impacted by Covid, it’s your duty to support others in our community who haven’t been as lucky. Most places have daily specials in order to help drive business, so check out their social media sites. And the fresh market and grocery boxes that local restaurants are selling are a great value, as they are able to offer products at a lower cost than in the grocery stores, so keep that in mind. You are saving money while helping your community.

Thank you so much, let’s take one for the team and eat out more!! And here’s an idea that my friend Stacey’s family are doing, they order out every Friday night, each week they take turns deciding what restaurant to order from. What a great opportunity to try new places and eating as a family is a gift in itself. OH, one last thing, when you do pick up takeout or eat in, tip your wait staff double what you normally would…I think that’s all for now?

muah!

Liette

If you liked this post, try this one!

https://oui-liette.org/2020/07/12/side-hustle-support-your-local-hustlers/

These are a few of my fav things! The Christmas, buy local, edition.

These are a few of my favorite things, the Christmas, buy local, edition.

So it may not exactly feel like the most wonderful time of the year, but at this point, does anything feel the way it’s supposed to feel? So let’s get past that and make this, 2020 holiday season, wonderful in its own, unique, messed up way.

My 2020 favorite holiday things list is very diverse, it’s got gift ideas, but it also includes a few things that have helped lift my spirits; I hope you find one or two things that will help bring you a bit of joy? I’m focusing on supporting local businesses, you can do the same, regardless of where your local is. Oh and they are in random order. I was going to do my 5 favorite things, but I ended up with 7, so two bonus ones, since it’s Christmas, why the hell not?

#1 Have a sweet day!

When I need a little pick me up this time of year, I head to Tony’s for their hot chocolate! It’s my favorite Moncton hot chocolate; it’s thick and creamy and topped with a mini gingerbread person, doing my best to be non-binary.

It’s perfect to kick off a busy Christmas shopping day or decorating day, I highly recommend! Feel free to recommend any hot chocolate places that you think can out do Tony’s, just going to warn you, it’s a tall cup to fill, lol, good luck!!

#2 Alpaca Wool Stuff

I wasn’t really aware of the difference between sheep wool and alpaca wool until, my cousins and I visited Janet and her adorable alpacas at Petitmore Alpacas. And now I am a bit obsessed with warm and cozy alpaca wool stuff!

My cousins and I with our new friends.


Check out Janet’s stuff on her Petitmore Alpacas new and improved website, or even better take a drive to her newly designed shop in Harcourt. Call ahead and follow the Covid rules, obvs.
I have three of her tuques and mittens and I may ask Santa for a pair of socks?

I don’t guarantee that they will know who I am, but tell them I sent you anyway! She will for sure remember if you tell her the crazy cousin gang sent you, lol.


So what makes alpaca wool better than sheep’s wool? It’s something about the fibers being hallow… and I am not really sure why that’s important, but it is, lol, you may want to Google it? I do know that it’s warmer, stays dryer and is softer.

What I love, love, love is that you can see where your hat or other comes from, we literally met and fed the alpacas on her farm and are wearing hats made from their wool that were knitted by Janet. It’s a bit sad that we have become so removed from the things we buy, and by we, I mean me. Not judging the rest of you, I am trying to be a better consumer.

Waiting for it to get cold enough so I can wear my new hats!!



This is my newest alpaca purchase, I got this blanket in St Andrews at Mermaids Tail boutique and it’s sooooo soft and warm! This would make a really, really nice Christmas gift…just saying.

If you can’t make it to Saint Andrews, call Kim, from Mermaids Tail, she can help you shop and ship to you, it’s just like ordering something from Amazon, except you are supporting a local business, which should make you feel even better about your purchase!

#3 Watch or listen to something Christmassy.

My new fav Christmas special is the The Kacey Musgraves Christmas Show. Kacey Musgraves is a cool country singer, but not mainstream pop cool, more like alternative retro cool. During the initial Covid lockdown, after I had finished watching everything on Netflix and was working my way through Amazon Prime Video, I happened upon her Christmas special and it’s so awesome!!! It was June, but it was still awesome, lol. I just watched it again and it’s still awesome.


I am adding it to my yearly Christmas movie/show list, it’s right up there with The Holiday and Love Actually.

Her special has a 70’s retro vibe, she almost looks like Cher in a few of the performances. She’s an amazing singer, she has lots of talented guests. Dan Levy, from Schitt’s Creek, is one of her guests, he plays a sassy elf…oh and I love her outfits and set design.
Watch it, it will for sure help you get into the Christmas mood.

#4 Give the gift of self care

Who knew that just staying home would be so stressful? Not having our normal routine and waiting for the daily news briefs to see if our status is changing (in NB we have colours, green to red, we are currently back in the orange zone, booo!) is making a lot of us anxious and it’s making some of us cranky, not naming names.

Self care is more important than ever, so my #4 fav thing is treating yourself or someone you love to a spa treatment.

I’m pretty sure I’ve been to most of the spas in my region; I love NAKAI on Mountain Rd and the Usva Spa Nordik on Magnetic Hill is fab! But the one I am calling out as one of my current favs is Namaste Spa in downtown Moncton, they have an Indian Head massage that will make you feel like all warm and mushy when done. Like super mushy, get up slowly or you may fall over.

A friend asked me if it hurt, she had a scalp massage somewhere else and felt like they were pulling her hair. The answer is a big fat NO! It felt amazing.

Your hair gets coated in warm oil so you will look like a grease ball when you leave, so you may want to bring a hat with you? And, I would suggest booking late day or early evening so you can leave the oil in for a bit. I tied my hair up and didn’t wash it till the next day and it felt like silk.

I recommend taking a look at all the treatments available at your favorite place and try something new; switch it up!! And just book it, we always seem to have great intentions, but it’s my experience that if you don’t just do it, you won’t do it at all. Also, if you get any spa gift cards for Christmas, book your treatment as soon as they re-open, make a date, put it in your calendar and go!! None of this having gift cards in your drawer for years bullshit. If someone gave it to you, then you probably look stressed and they want you to chill the f out!! lol, they would never tell this to your face, but I am…you’re welcome! Side note, if anyone asks if I am stressed and would benefit from a spa treatment, tell them hell yes!! lol

#5 Winging It

I am currently going through a wing phase and I’ll be honest, I haven’t tried every wing place in town, so I am not going to pretend to be a wing expert, but I do know that the Igloo, on Elmwood Dr, has super delicious wings. My fav are their honey garlic, you can get the sauce on the side, but I recommend getting the sauce on the wings. If you’re afraid that the sauce will make them mushy, it doesn’t, they’re still crunchy.

Their official wing night is on Wednesdays, but every night can and should be wing night in my mind.

This is obviously not a professional pic, it’s my lunch, yup you can do takeout!


The Igloo will always have a special place in my heart, it was my dads fav place, he knew and teased all the wait staff, they loved him and he loved them. They are just plain good people and they, and all restaurants and pubs, need our support now more than ever! So eat in or take out.

Also, one mini rant that I will be repeating in my next post. Guess who supports local sports teams and local raffles and auctions for Billy and Mary’s school trip or whatever it is? Small, locally owned businesses like pubs and restaurants!!!! The community is always hitting them up for this or that and they have always been super supportive, they now need us to support them, so check them out on social media, share their specials and tag them when you eat there or take out.

Adam Worden the Igloo’s new owner. If you see him, tell him I said hi, he will for sure not know who I am, lol.

#6 Shop Small

By Shop Small, I mean shop local markets and shops. They really do have the coolest stuff. My favs are those that help support and promote Canadian companies.

The Green Pig Country Market is located in Salisbury


I follow The Green Pig on Instagram and they do a great job of posting cool new items. They posted this candle, it’s perfect for gift giving. I bought one as a gift…and one for me, lol. This also proves that social media can help sell your products, it’s an invaluable tool for small businesses.


Other great shops here in Moncton are the Painted Pineapple, Gifts Galore, during the holidays Gifts Galore usually have warm cider for their shoppers. My Home Mercantile and Starving Artist Cafe are also on my regular rotation; side note, I have bought more than one thing from My Home Mercantile after seeing it on their Instagram.

Make a Saturday of it and visit all the cute gift shops in your town. It will for sure get you in a happy festive mood. Oh and if you are boutique/shop hopping in downtown Moncton, stop in at BHome, they have awesome original art and some really cool, unique stuff too, they do all my framing.

This 2020 snowflake is hanging on my tree, I think it sums up 2020 really well, lol. I got this from My Home Mercantile.

These are trying times, I know, I personally love shopping in person and discovering new cool finds, but if you don’t feel safe venturing out, follow local places on social media, order online or order and pick it up.

#7 Cozy Right Picasse Sweatshirts


My lucky number 7 fav things are Chiac and sassy apparel from Dowd Street Studio. I first discovered this company on Instagram, one of my friends in Montreal, Lisa G, posted a few shirts and being from Moncton, home of chiac (a mix of French & English), I knew I needed one.

My Dowd Street collection now includes a t-shirt and two sweatshirts; the sweatshirts are my fav, they feel like they’ve been washed a bunch of times, you know that super soft feeling, that’s how they feel! I also love supporting local woman in business, Dowd Street is one such business. I also love how Moncton women love supporting other women; c’est right cool! 😉

Check out Dowd Street Studio online and follow on Insta, they have great posts.

Those are just a few of my favorite things, I think that I am going to start sharing cool items that I am digging on a monthly basis on my FB and Insta pages, so follow me if you are interested in seeing what I am into, @ oui-liette

So go pick up creamy hot chocolate at Tony’s and drink while you shop at My Home Mercantile, BHome and other local shops. Stop in at the Igloo for lunch or take out for supper. Curl up on your couch in your soft Dowd Street sweatshirt, draped in your alpaca blanket from The Mermaids Tale while you watch Kasey Musgrave’s Christmas Special.

Thank you for reading!! Go out there and support local businesses and don’t be a shitty person.

muah!

Liette

If you liked this one, you may also like this post from last year, it asks the very important question: is naughty so bad?? It’s very deep! lol

https://oui-liette.org/2019/12/01/dear-santa-is-naughty-really-so-bad/

A Covid Halloween – kid friendly ideas.

2020, or the year that all our plans died, has been a challenge to say the least, but we’ve made it to October! With Halloween a few weeks away, I think we should plan on having a really weird Halloween, but let’s make weird work for us!

Here are a few ideas to make Halloween 2020 the best, weirdest, global pandemic Halloween ever!

If you’re a regular reader you know that I can be a bit sassy, but these ideas are legit aimed at making great Halloween memories for you and your kids…of all ages…ok there maybe a few sassy variations, so if you don’t have kids, keep reading and just add booze to every idea.

A New Way to Trick n’ Treat

Omg I love this ideas!!! Ok, let’s say that something really scary happens right before Halloween and old school, regular, trick or treating gets canceled. How can we salvage some sort of fun?

Here’s a great way to trick or treat, while socially distancing, Covid style.

How excited would your kids be if someone rang your doorbell and when they answered, there was a special treat waiting for them?

So I have a few ideas for this one. This is a great way for grandparents, aunts and uncles to surprise their little munchkins. Go to the dollar store and buy a plastic pumpkin or use some sort of small bucket. Fill it with treats, attach a helium balloon, get a white one and draw on eyes and a mouth and add a little note; then drop and go!

Another option is to make plans with the moms and dads from your hood to exchange treats with. You can get the kids involved, let them pick the treats for their friend’s buckets and then bring them along for the sneaky drop off. Coordinate times so each child is home at the time of their drop off.

Or…make them for your own kids and leave them at your own door. Ok, one last variation, drop them off to your adult friends and family too, add a few mickies and chips, whatever. I’d love to get a special treat like this myself!

Here’s the adult drop and go option.


Host a Spooky Night

Plan a spooky meal, invite a few friends if it’s safe to do so, if not, make it a family thing or whoever is in your bubble. Get the kids involved in the meal prep, remember your ultimate goal is to make memories.

Step 1 – make your table fancy, so it’s not just a normal dinner. Add some bats or pumpkins, use cloth napkins; let the kids drink out of fancy wine glasses, you can get them their own plastic ones from the dollar store, if you’re afraid of using your crystal, lol. Then during the meal, take turns making toasts to each other, ching, ching or cling, cling.

Step 2 – A spooky menu

Plan a spooky menu, like these mini pizzas, just make it fun, let them make their own, finally one night that they are encouraged to play with their food!


These mummies below are super fun, they just need a bit or bloody ketchup!


And if your kids are a bit older, gross them out with this creepy meatloaf. Have them help you make it, or even better have each person make their own, mini meatloaf.


Don’t forget about dessert, if they can’t go out to trick or treat, bring the treats to them; and make it fun!

Love these bug cookies.


Finish up your night with a spooky movie.

Play Dress Up

It’s been my experience that getting ready to go out can be more fun than actually going out. Even if things get canceled you still need to dress up!!

So why don’t you plan some sort of group or family costume? Get everyone ready then snap some family pics, let them be silly and make faces, I promise they will look back on these pictures with fond memories.

Or pack everyone in the car and go stand on the front lawn of their grandparents/family/friends and have them take a pic of your zombie crew. You get to show off your costumes and it gets the kids out of the house.


If you have teenagers, force them to participate!! Have everyone dress up in black and have a contest who can draw the coolest or strangest looking skull face. And for your family pic, if they don’t smile, you can tell yourself they were just in character.

*pics from Pintrest, the greatest Halloween helper!

Bark at the moon! (Ozzy Osborn reference for my bro, plus it sounds better than Howl at the moon.)

Hey! Did you know that Halloween falls on a full moon this year? Get your people outside and have them howl at the moon! No, seriously, go outside and start howling, it’s dumb, silly and I promise you’ll feel like a dork, but you’ll end up laughing and making your kids laugh. Then, when they’re older they’ll remember that Halloween when there was a full moon and their parents took them outside to howl at the moon.

If 2020 has taught us anything, it’s that you just have to roll with things and make the best of shitty situations; this is even more important if you’re a parent. It’s basically your job to make certain your kids don’t feel like they’re being cheated out of the “normal” fun things in life, like Halloween. Make abnormal fun and exciting! Good luck, be safe and stay healthy!

Boo!

Liette

Day Tripping in NB – Bouctouche

Day Tripping in NB – Bouctouche

Today we are tripping our way to Bouctouche, NB; a super quaint seaside village forty minutes from Moncton.

Day tripping with me are two of my fifty seven cousins, jk, there are only like fifty six of us, lol. Please meet Brigitte and Tania, both are cousins on my dad’s side. Fun fact, growing up I was called Brigitte a LOT during family gatherings. I actually still do, she and I are less than a year apart, I am guessing that’s why? To be fair there were so many of us it was hard to keep us all straight… apparently?

EDCAE753-CB15-4B0B-B6D3-863E16BAFBD6
Brigitte on the left and Tania on the right.

My summer goal is to tour my own province and I am embarrassed to admit that I have never been to the Irving Nature Park in Bouctouche, so today is the day. I’ve been to Bouctouche tones of times, but usually to go to the beach, they have the most amazing warm water beaches!!

So today, my cousins and I are on our way to Bouctouche to be tourists and explore a bit.

The first thing we did as soon as we arrived was eat, obviously!! There are a bunch of places to eat on Main Street. We were craving some Acadian comfort food, so we went to La Sagouine Restaurant, not to be confused with Le Pays de la Sagouine, which is kind of an Acadian theme park, without rides. Sadly it’s been closed due to Covid. If you haven’t been you need to go as soon as it re-opens, it’s an awesome way to soak in some local culture.

8CD4FC3F-BE80-479C-9AF4-063995CF9AF0

Another great way to soak up some Acadian culture is to eat some authentic regional food, which is what we did. The menu above has a lot of Acadian dishes, I’ll translate for those who don’t read French: first is chicken fricot, which is a soup with a spice called summer savory, it’s used a lot in Acadian cuisine. The next item sounds really bad in English, lol, it’s grated potatoes and pork baked in the oven until the edges and top are crispy, it’s soooo good! The next item, crêpe râpée, uses the same potato mixture as the rapé; it’s basically a potato pancake. And the last item is a bar clam pie, which is also to die for!!

D10B1E8B-C88A-49FF-98FE-7873A373FF7F
My fav was the crêpe râpée!! Bottom left.

We ordered the crêpe râpée, potato pancake, their lobster roll and the seafood casserole. We made sure to save room for their homemade pies, Brigitte wanted to order her dessert first, we told her no. 😬

As you can see Acadian cuisine isn’t exactly light; we waddled to the Irving Nature Park to walk off our lunch.

9A307AA2-9EB6-4EAB-A6F7-C4A380198B32
It was beautiful!! We walked for over an hour, it’s huge! There are areas with picnic tables, there’s a fountain, a play area for kids and beautiful rose gardens; there is something for everyone.

D9F6FC47-1F7E-4B78-951B-D64EE2EB4923

We’ve decided that we are coming back in the fall when the leaves start changing and then back at Christmas time, they put Christmas lights in the huge trees that surround the chapel. Brigitte said that it’s absolutely magical, so we will need to come back.

After our walk we drove down the coast and saw fishing boats, oyster beds and people digging for clams, we call them piss clams, because they shoot out water when you pick them up. These are the type of clams used to make fried clams. We used to go digging clams a lot when we were kids, I haven’t been for decades; I may need to add that to my summer bucket list?

 

353D9317-0BC0-4DA3-BF59-55AA7C62CF68
Have you ever gone clam digging? It was low tide; there were lots of people digging for clams. Those black things in the background are oyster beds.

20FF0C08-54D5-4D16-A7E6-828011E1640C

Leaving the Nature Park, we took a left and stayed on the road that follows the water. Our plan was to stop and check out anything that looked interesting; this giant strawberry looked interesting, too bad the u-pick was closed.

BFD4AFDB-AB9E-4644-ACCE-136D695C1C10
I was told to take a bite out of this strawberry, I think it looks more like I am yelling at it? Lol

Our next stop was at Wood Chuck’s Carvings and Antiques, it was certainly an interesting stop.

48A6CA0D-D8E7-4997-9E6F-92E98E19D186

They have the most awesome, random things; from old anchors, to antique glassware, vintage hats, to marbles and a giant box filled with old school metal keys.

40AFE611-37F6-4AF0-8117-F247D76FF68B

They also have an amazing view of Bouctouche Bay. I took pics outside while Brigitte tried on vintage hats, we each bought one; now I need to host a special event so we have a place to wear them.

One of the things that I love about living in the Maritimes is seeing fishing buoys strewn across lawns, you don’t see that living in Las Vegas! I am certain some of my desert friends have never even seen a real buoy, they are used by fisherman to mark and identify their traps. The buoys in our area are mostly for lobster traps, our lobster season starts in August.

I got Tania to run out and take a pic of these pink buoys; I’ve never seen pink ones before!!

3508B5E8-265F-4519-8091-58B2D44F0BFC

Then a few kilometres down the road we saw these decorative buoys, I love all the colours.

405E60E0-F91E-42F5-A6E1-88955D58BE21

Had it been super sunny we would have gone to the Dunes for a dip, this cloudy day was perfect for exploring and spending time together.

So that was our day tip, you really should get out there and explore your own area, I am sure there are lots of things that you’ve never gotten around to seeing yet? I am seeing lots of your pictures on social media of you visiting local sights, yay!!

Thank you for reading!!!!! Check out my Instagram and Facebook sites: Oui-Liette. I get thousands of views per blog posts, yay!! But my Instagram page needs some more followers, please?? Lol. I am revamping the look of it a bit.

muah!

Liette

0BF8DA4A-DEAE-4E3E-9E30-BF4CEB054F13

If you liked this post, you’ll probably love these ones too!

This one was so much fun, glaming: https://oui-liette.org/2020/07/05/girls-who-glamp/

This is another Day Tripping in NB post: https://oui-liette.org/2020/07/11/day-tripling-in-nb-cornhill-nursery/

 

Défi Best Lobster Roll in le sud-est du NB

Défi Best Lobster Roll in le Sud-Est/South East NB

Lobster is serious business in these parts of Atlantic Canada; the Bay of Fundy has the best lobster in the world! It’s a fact, look it up.

I grew up eating lobster, my grandfather’s family were lobster fisherman, as was my father’s favorite uncle on my grandmother’s side. His name was Livain and he used to take us out on his fishing boat and let my brother and I help him pull up his “special” lobster trap. Looking back, it now seems a bit fishy that there were always a few lobsters waiting for us.

I am sharing these details of my childhood to demonstrate that I am more than qualified for this special challenge; to find the best lobster rolls dans le sud-est du Nouveau Brunswick! We also mix our French and English in these parts, so try to keep up! Lol

**I obviously didn’t try every place in le sud-est, but I did my best. Feel free to leave a comment if there is a place that I need to try.

Shediac

For our first lobster roll we went to Shediac, pronounced: shed-dee-ack, for my none Maritime friends. Why was Shediac our first stop? Because it’s the lobster capital of the world, that’s why.

0567B3BE-DD20-4107-9867-5651137D87D2

Here’s the proof in case you didn’t believe me.

06C41A48-3539-41F3-AA94-A33229B8D161

Golden Fry, Shediac

6F4E52BB-D2BE-4FF8-9A2D-8BDBEB3529BB
Golden Fry is located on Main St in Shediac

I’m not going to lie, when I opened my bag and saw that the mayonnaise wasn’t mixed in with my lobster, I was a bit worried; I like it all mixed together, but it was really yummy!! The lettuce, which I don’t love in a lobster roll, I prefer celery, was fresh and crisp, so I didn’t mind it. There was enough mayonnaise and most importantly the lobster didn’t taste frozen!!! I am giving Golden Fry a solid 8 claws out of 10.
🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞

274AD5DF-9CE5-4D36-B958-187CF509442B

Chez Léo, Shediac Bridge

Chez Léo has been open since 1961 and reminds me a lot of my dad; he used take me there for fried clams. Here’s another fun fact, it’s on the other side of a bridge that only has one lane. It has no lights or stop sign, yet people instinctively take turns going across; three cars will go and then the fourth car will let a few cars from the other side cross. That may not sound abnormal for my fellow Maritimers, but in Toronto or the US that would cause anarchy, lol.

5192C4B7-8C59-44DA-83E1-631C3BEB4BA1

Back to lobster rolls; the lobster was fresh, they asked me if I wanted with or without mayo, which I appreciated. It was tasty, giving it a solid 8 claws out of 10. 🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞

Moncton

It’s funny that Moncton, even though it’s exactly 15 minutes from the ocean, isn’t considered a coastal town by the locals and not the place to go for a great lobster roll; like Monctonians are way too far inland to know anything about lobster, lol.

C7025769-4A53-4220-A6B8-852F365A5BF2

Hynes Restaurant, Moncton

9BA41093-E5A5-48FA-AF95-CFBAFB9F6A68

FD7ABE32-DAFF-43EF-80F1-7DF2FE34E8CD

Hynes restaurants is probably Moncton’s oldest dinner; it’s been around longer than I have.
Their lobster was lightly mixed with the mayonnaise, which I like and they didn’t have lettuce, which I appreciated. Some places add lettuce as a filler, I am not down with that trick! Lol. The lobster was most likely from a lobster pack, which is frozen, but that’s fine, most places do use lobster packs for their lobster rolls.
Giving Hynes a respectable 7 claws out of 10.
🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞

Skipper Jacks, Moncton

0739930D-E88F-40CD-A4F3-7F192CC9CCE8

Skipper Jacks apparently has a new menu, according to my mom, who had lunch there recently; she had the lobster chowder and raved about it. I got a lobster roll to go and it was delish!! The bun was toasted extra crispy the way I like; they didn’t have their lobster mixed with the mayo, but I am starting to change my point of view regarding this important aspect of lobster rolling.
The lobster tasted fresh and not frozen and it’s one of the few rolls so far that had pieces of tail and not just claws and knuckles. I am giving Skipper Jacks 9 claws out of 10!! 🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞

Euston Park, Moncton

53CFD576-32CA-4C17-A03B-1FA4C71A8C08

This was my first time at Euston Park, which is an outdoor eating/bar area. It’s so cute!!! But how was their lobster roll??

It looked really pretty, the bread was fresh and crunchy, the lobster was overflowing out of the bun and it was tasty. The curveball is that it included Tarragon; it wasn’t a traditional lobster roll, it was a fancy lobster roll. My first bite was like oh!! I wasn’t 100% sure about it, but my second bite was like, ok, I could be down with this?

I am going to give it 8 claws out of 10, but if you aren’t a fan of Tarragon then this isn’t the roll for you; roll on. 🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞

2394BE5E-4923-4BFE-80A7-8778A636BFC3

Alma

E071C4AA-E3AF-44D2-96D7-6EA12199546B

You can’t be on the hunt for the best lobster roll without rolling into the Bay of Fundy.

Fundy Take-Out, Alma

Our first stop is the little shop on the right of the entrance of Fundy National Park, it’s appropriately called Fundy Take-Out.

D0B4E35E-F560-4929-9E21-B797FB9A6030

This lobster roll was ok, I can imagine how good it would taste after a long hike in the park. There could have been a little more mayonnaise, but the bun was the best to date; it was nice and crispy. I found it a bit bland and had to add a bit of salt, which is fine. I think the more lobster rolls I eat the pickier I am getting? I am going to give Fundy Take-Out 7 claws out of 10; which is still a solid score. 🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞

21049BEB-D993-4457-9DFD-210A7E056CD2

Cape Pelé

Our next two stops are in Cape Pelé; Fred’s and L’aboiteau.

Fred’s Restaurant, Cape Pelé

I had options at Fred’s, with or without mayo and with or without lettuce. I’m not going to lie, having the mayo just drizzled like this looked weird and plain, but it was yummy, the lobster was fresh and the bun was crispy. Giving Fred’s 8 claws out of 10. 🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞

11DF31AB-C087-492C-9DE6-AF4BC4F211D3

L’aboiteau Wharf

L’aboiteau has a restaurant in the beach area and a small place right on the wharf; we ate at the wharf location.

7A048A32-4EA5-434B-BD77-97226B4AF836

This lobster roll had pieces of tail; it was fresh, crispy and super tasty! I am giving this roll a 9 of 10 claws!!!! 🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞🦞

B9E71D99-A9F4-4526-B823-9BAA0EF09EE3
Doing my best to show the lobster roll and my earrings.

I obviously didn’t get a chance to eat at all the lobster places, sadly. A few places in Alma were closed when we went, due to COVID. We didn’t make it to Bouctouche, where in the past, I’ve had the best lobster rolls ever. That’s why none of the lobster rolls on my list got a 10 out of 10; I was saving some room for Bouctouche. So please when doing your own taste test, do not forget to go to Bouctouche!

Of the 8 places I visit, two places got 9 claws out of 10; Skipper Jacks in Moncton and L’aboiteau Wharf in Cape Pelé. They both had juicy pieces of tail, oh that sounds odd and mildly inappropriate, Lol. What I meant is that most places only had pieces of lobster claws and knuckles; that’s what made the difference for me and why they scored higher.
Let’s be real, it’s really hard to make a bad lobster roll in these parts, but these two stood out from the crowd.

Thank you for reading, I hope you get to try a few of these places on your own this summer. It’s a tough job, but I am willing to keep eating local lobster rolls until I’ve tried them all…you’re welcome!! Please shop local and tip your server a bit extra! Especially the seasonal places.

Feel free to recommend a place I should to try, here in the comment section below, or on my Facebook page.

muah!

Liette

9126C17F-D1CE-4ED0-9003-E2ADAC183FB9

Hey check mes pen d’oreilles de homard!!! 🤣

FEC08E0B-B394-42C2-8448-2A0FA7BAA9EA

E8816263-FD93-410E-8110-FDFCB00AA0A4

Behind the Scenes Extras

Fun fact, I thought that others added celery to their lobster rolls, but turns out they don’t, but they clearly should! Try it.

I created a fun side list; here are the winners!!

Best View – Alma!! To be eating your lobster roll on a wharf or beside an actual fishing boat is pretty awesome. The boat, pictured here, will be completely submerged at high tide; FYI for my readers that aren’t aware of our crazy tides.

C073D529-9D38-4533-A1C4-38C0F162912E

Best view runner up was L’aboiteau. This view is not too shabby either.

27CCC21A-7A71-4427-9E04-0DADB305A833

Most Impressive Lobster – Shediac, it wasn’t even a competition, it’s ginormous. I invite locals to climb up on it and take tacky tourist pics; live a little. I hadn’t climbed up in….mmm a decade or two?

2D59AFB0-26D2-48B3-80CB-C916E0879023

Cutest Lobster Accessory

Torn between my Sex, Drugs & Lobster Roll t-shirt and my giant lobster earrings. I chose not to wear them together as that would be too much; yes, I guess that’s the line! Lol

C57434F4-5593-402C-98FC-255AE9468AED
I bought this at the My Home Mercantile

95E38C0E-7FD3-4B5A-877E-1AEBF1C68B08

Cutest Lobster Shack – It’s a beautiful shade of purple, so it wins! Sadly it wasn’t open yet for the season, but it still wins as cutest and I will be back!

7C6EEC4D-EEAE-4204-917B-92F8C0B238B3

 

 

 

 

 

At Home With Stacey and Liette (me); Fancy Pantries.

At Home With Stacey And Liette (me); Fancy Pantries.

This is the last post of my, At Home With, series for a bit. They’ve gotten a lot of readers so I will do more; maybe we can peek into people’s homes at Christmas time??

For our finale, let’s peek into some fancy pantries. First up is my friend Stacey’s pantry; she and I love to do fancy things together, it usually involves shopping, but today we’ll be touring our pantries.

Stacey and her family have a gorgeous home, but her pantry is a real hidden gem. If you’re in her kitchen and the doors are closed you would never suspect that there’s an amazing pantry there.

E11094EA-D1AA-4798-82F0-76655BCA8B07

Beautiful kitchen right? Wait for it.

47E29AAE-B654-4B44-AC79-FC74E9F6A5DB

Voilà!! Oh and this is Finn, he’s the sweetest dog ever; I’m pretty sure his dog treats are in the pantry, so he’s on guard duty.

Her walk in pantry has floor to ceiling storage, the layout was very well thought out.

E614C10A-63C6-4438-8A3D-8011B5A93813

F1B02273-5B50-4888-AC32-1435F0E8E56D

Stacey and I agree that one of the best parts of having a big pantry is that you can hide your small appliances in them.

In addition to all the regular pantry stuff, Stacey keeps her pottery mugs that she has collected from her travels, they are just above her fancy coffee machine. She has pottery from the Maritime all the way to Iceland, from her most recent trip. When traveling, why buy tacky touristy stuff, when you can support local artists? That was rhetorical, there is no reason not to, lol.

Her pantry is filled with beautiful wooden bowls, family pieces and pottery, each item has a story; I absolutely love that about her home.

D785E7D9-43F2-49E8-B3B3-A7A48B7127CB

And during the peak of the pandemic lock down, she joked that the most valuable thing in her pantry was her husband’s jar of yeast.

306AFD22-6EB0-47AF-B9E1-76274FE11B5D

At Home With Liette

2BCF395F-1C40-4E25-9864-3140CAD0EEAD
Covid Hair alert!! 

Stacey’s home is on the outskirts of town, it overlooks the city. My home is downtown in the heart of the city; OK it’s a small city, but still, I’m in the heart of it!

I am not going to lie that my pantry is what sealed the deal for my new place. The owner kept telling me it’s perfect for entertaining….I finally had to speak up and let him know who he was dealing with; events and party planner extraordinaire! Sooo he didn’t seem impressed, but I am sure he was blown away on the inside, he was just playing it cool, lol.

Apparently the “new thing” in pantries are sinks; it’s called a wet pantry, who knew? It maybe the most practical thing ever?

C0E18E50-16B2-46F7-B86A-37CE4CCA7B95

So this is my pantry/laundry room/craft closet. What I love most about having a pantry with a sink and a door is that when entertaining, you can store all the messy stuff in there and bring it out when needed. It’s also great to have a place for my toaster and other stuff, so it’s not cluttering my kitchen counter space.

ACC2CA3D-127E-45A9-B879-80E2569871FA

21C523BB-095E-4C8A-ABB1-95A8BC3A88C0

4380116D-9F77-4503-9AA7-6852C0B33EDF

The right side of the pantry is my laundry area; and all the way from Las Vegas is Lucille the cow; she helps me with my laundry. She’s great at folding, but horrible at putting clothes away.

60817E82-54FC-4B84-98BE-B0E0AC5D3F86

I have so much storage in here that some of my kitchen cupboards are empty. The cabinet to the left of my toaster oven is where I keep all my craft and party stuff…and my skates.

3CEBFBB6-BAFD-459B-89AA-2A6B679D89C7

Someone asked me what I kept in the orange boxes above my spice jars and where I got them? They are the boxes that my Nova Scotia Crystal glasses came in; they were too pretty and sturdy to throw away. I keep can goods and food stuff in them. Most of my glass jars are from IKEA.

11659A19-EB01-4C60-A3BC-C5D6388387F8

Can you tell I bought myself a label maker?? To say that I went label crazy when I first got it would be a gross understatement. When I moved I assumed that my pantry would turn into a catch all, but it stays really neat. That saying; a place for everything and everything in its place, rings true.

Thank you for reading, if you missed any of my other; At Home With…, scroll down to read them.

Coming up – I am working on a few fun projects; more decorating, some day trips and believe it or not, I am working on some content for fall. I’m taking advantage of this time off; and if I was working I would be planning all my fall shows, so it seems normal for me to work that far ahead, lol.

Thank you Stacey and Finn for letting us peek into your pantry.

Leave a comment or follow me on Facebook or Insta: Oui-Liette

muah!!

Liette

D7606004-F17D-4816-8EAB-4712FC2699D7
Finn kind of stole the spotlight from Stacey, for this shot, I decided to just crop her out completely. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Brunswick Making Lemonade out of Lemons.

New Brunswick making lemonade out of lemons.

In this post I would like to highlight a few local businesses who are trying to make the best out of a really difficult situation; they’re trying to make lemonade out of a bunch of lemons…or lemon drop martinis; yes some are making really, really strong lemons drop martinis!!

For the last 6 weeks, I’ve been socially distancing in my downtown Moncton apartment feeling a bit lost and helpless. I’ve tried my best to create positive, entertaining and who are we kidding, sometimes super silly, blog posts to share with my readers.

And as everyone else, I’ve probably been spending too much time on social media? And although there are lots of Debbie Downers out there; I’ve felt a lot of pride being back home in my native province watching my fellow New Brunswickers being so compassionate, resilient and downright scrappy!

Please note that these are just a handful of local businesses. My goal for this summer is to visit every inch of our beautiful province; if you have recommendations of things I need to experience, please let me know. I will also be making trips to PEI and NS once we are allowed to cross borders.

And lastly, I am not getting any freebies from anyone mentioned in this post; the last thing any of our local businesses need right now are people hitting them up for free stuff. OK, let’s get started!

Blue Roof Distillers

472C1190-FE19-4A0E-9AE1-04D1FAE6BC3C

When you’re able to make vodka out of potatoes, making lemonade out of lemons seems like it would be fairly easy right? That’s exactly what Blue Roof Distillers are currently doing.

Like so many local businesses they were looking for creative ways to stay busy and keep their staff employed,during this pandemic; while also helping the local community. The solution was to convert part of their distillery to make sanitizer, which has been in short supply lately; their nimbleness is helping to keep our front line workers safe and germ free.

AE746AC5-4C0D-4881-A9CB-C356AF381D20
That’s Devon Strang on the left and Blue Roof’s Head Distiller, Cameron Boyd, on the right.

The Strang family started farming in in New Brunswick in 1855; six generations later they are one of Atlantic Canada’s premier potato suppliers.

Devon Strang, Founder/CEO of Blue Roof Distillers, explains the uniqueness of their production; “Our process is unique in every way, Blue Roof Handcrafted Spirits are made from scratch using whole potatoes. Recipes are tailored to the raw materials available lowering the ecological footprint of the farm. Potatoes that are too small to market are now destined for the distillery. The mash, after being distilled, is then gifted to local farmers for livestock feed. The Strang family is proud to be able to offer value-added spirits that are distinguishable different than others on the market. The distillery produces all of its own alcohol and does not blend any commercial ethanol into its process.”

I love the history and the story of the Strang Family Farm and their evolution over 6 generations. I think we really need to be mindful of where our food, and vodka, comes from and we need to support our local farms!

You can purchase their spirits at NB Liquor; please refer to their website for more information on their products and also on how to order their sanitizer.

Blue Roof Distillers are located on the South-East edge of NB, directly off the Trans Canada Hwy, 4144 Route 16, in Malden.

They offer Tours and Tastings at their distillery. I will be booking a tour as soon as we are free to roam and will blog about it, of course.

C46E0331-2536-4F5C-8972-8FE018861CC4
If you live in NB and have driven to PEI, you have seen their giant potato; his name is Tater Nate.

I couldn’t help but notice that they have a Gin Soda Citrus Blast mixed drink, which goes perfectly with my lemon/citrus theme. So I needed to buy one and have a little taste test; I mean it would probably be irresponsible not to? It was really yummy and refreshing!

D2DD7FBC-E1CF-43D1-83F8-545969F8AC24

To contact Blue Roof Distillers:

Tel: (506) 538 -7767. Cell: (506) 533 – 0780

Website: http://www.blueroofdistillers.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BlueRoofDistillers/

 

Gusto Italian Grill & Bar

 

GUSTO-01 (2)

Some restaurants are doing their best to keep as many of their staff employed by offering curbside or delivery meals. One such business is Gusto Italian Grill & Bar, located at 130 Westmorland Street, here in Moncton. As they scrambled to get their takeout only operation up and running; they realized that they had fridges full of homemade cheesecakes, just begging to be eaten.

As a small gesture of gratitude to the local hospital staff, owner Brett Judson, decided to make special deliveries to both Moncton hospitals. Keeping it in the family, he recruited his teenage children to cut and package hundreds of pieces of cheesecake.

Gusto is now open for business from 4pm to 8pm daily; orders can be placed by calling the restaurant directly and picking up your order curbside; or you can also order via Skip the Dish and have it delivered.

Check their Facebook and Instagram for their daily curb side specials. My current fav so far is Pasta Mondays! They’ve also just started weekly food boxes, they are an amazing value! All of their specials are listed on their Facebook and Instagram sites.

BBF4CA8B-ED9B-41C6-9C9C-189CA1DE0E18

To place your curbside orders: 506-204-7177

Website: https://gustoitaliangrill.ca/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/GustoMoncton

Instagram: gustomoncton

In case you didn’t know, Gusto’s make the best cheesecakes, like ever!! The one below is their Lemon Cheesecake and it’s to die for! They also have an amazing gluten free Chocolate Ganache Cheesecake; it’s actually my favorite and I don’t even have gluten issues.

Lenon cheescake

The Zesty Lemon

152C034D-16D6-41A9-BBF1-73AE7D180D52

The Zesty Lemon is a cheerful gem, located at 535 Somerset St, in Saint John; who’s lunchtime rush disappeared overnight once the social distancing rules were put in place. They had to take a serious look at their business model and adapt quickly; their solution was to focus on delicious & nutritious meals, ready for pick up.

To see their menu and to place your order visit their website at: http://www.thezestylemon.ca then picked up your order curbside.

What I love about their menu in particular are the family sized dinners. Their Roasted Chicken Dinner for 4 comes with a roasted chicken, roasted rosemary potatoes, carrots, gravy and 2 French baguettes. Oh, I also love their flatbread pizzas…and their soups…

With lots of us working from home and homeschooling, having someone else prepared a healthy, home cooked meal is a treat that you don’t have to feel guilty about.

If you’re in the Saint John area, please give them a try.

88F580E1-6F25-405B-BE74-E438B0F1C5F7

 

Radiant Photography

C5D59EFA-D37C-49A1-B60C-1AC731EBBD6E

Ali is a mother of two, an early education educator and a photographer. I met Ali a few months ago; she photographed me before this whole pandemic thing started. She’s the perfect example of a scrappy New Brunswicker who’s resourceful enough to make the sweetest lemonade from a bunch of lemons.

B8284D43-09D9-43CF-9835-E43218F20363
Ali from Radiant Photography

Sadly, in order to comply with the social distancing rules, Ali had to cancel her scheduled appointments. As she sat home, she wondered if perhaps her photographs could bring some joy to others and also help our community in some meaningful way? She found a perfect way to accomplish both! She was inspired by a photographer in Massachusetts who started photographing families on their front steps. She decided to do the same with her neighbors, at a super safe distance away of course.

When I saw her post her first few sessions online, I thought they were super cute family pics. But as time passed, I started seeing them differently; or perhaps, like so many things these days, I was seeing the deeper meaning? These family porch sessions are amazing time capsules that will forever serve to document this moment in time when the world briefly came to a standstill and we rediscovered the importance of family.

Each portrait is unique and shows the personality of the family being photographed. And in lieu of payment, Ali has been suggesting that her porch families make a donation to Crossroads for Woman.
In these times of struggle, we all suffer, but we don’t all suffer equally. If you are able, please donate to your favorite charity. I am certain it is needed more than you can imagine.

A1634DB1-37D5-493A-9FDF-E02E9D9AD9CB
Just a few of Ali’s Porch Families.

To view more Family Prortraits go to: https://radiantphotography45.pixieset.com/frontstepsprojectmonctonnorthend/?fbclid=IwAR0WXhUrvM-GSkjOe7MwQB_iI6ikRQkj6_oF6TlaOD-KDnN30YNz0hRtXro

323EA02B-4608-4132-8FFA-012ACA4001D1
Ali’s daughter splashing around in her lemony boots!

Please visit Radian Photography’s Facebook and Instagram Sites and make sure to book a photo shoot with her when this is over; fingers crossed it will be soon.

To contact Radiant Photography and book a session go to her social media sites.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/radiant.photography2019

Instagram: radiant.potography_

B HOME

BHome logo

B HOME is located at 333 St George Street in Moncton. I’ve been a customer of theirs for a long time. I support them because I feel that they are true artists and not just a framing place that frame art. You’ll get their artist vibe when you visit their store, once we are allowed back out. 

I was a little surprised when I heard that they would be offering curb side service, because I wasn’t really sure how that would work logically; but guess what? It works!

FD3F9F8C-2556-4500-9096-A0E6A7F8C1C4
Marc from B HOME

Here are the three easy steps:

Step 1 – Call them to make arrangements for drop off or to have your art piece picked up; I just dropped off a new piece to them last week.

Step 2 – Is a video consultation session. What I found very cool, was that I could show Marc a bit of my home; he got to see my style and aesthetic. I showed him where I hung the last piece he did for me; who knew that BHome would be in my home? Well virtually anyway.
The consultation consisted of him showing me a few options; as he would have done in his store. We successfully chose a mat and frame that I am absolutely in love with!!

Step 3 – Pick up your framed piece!

F935D308-C354-42F8-B976-4687D9E7DC23

This is the piece that they are currently framing for me. The mat options above look red, but they are hot pink; I ended up choosing the gold frame. The painting was a birthday gift from my super talented sister-in-law. I can’t wait to see the finished piece. I’ll post pics on my oui-liette Instagram and oui-liette Facebook accounts, if you want to see it when done.

707BAC8D-3543-46D7-BADD-3C2C1154A61D

Another fun option, that many may not be aware of, is that if you can drop off an existing frame and your art and they can custom cut a mat for you. This is very economical without having to give up that professional customized look.

B HOME has the coolest Instagram account and stories, you need to follow them!

https://www.facebook.com/bhomemoncton

Instagram: bhomemoncton

web: http://www.bhomemoncton.com

1EA15C35-F762-42C7-9AFB-69B07F83145E

To close out this post I reached out to the Mayor of Moncton, Dawn Arnold, for her thoughts on how we are doing as a community in these challenging times; turns out she couldn’t be prouder of us!

“I’ve been so amazed by the ingenuity, creativity and innovation that Monctonians are showing right now. Everything from the non-profits that are coming together to ensure that all the kids who participated in the school lunch programs are receiving lunches daily to Co-Pain that has taken their amazing bakery on-line to Notre Dame de Parkton, who now have weekly “box” filled with local products. The City has responded so swiftly and responsibly to this pandemic and I think that will set up well in the post-COVID future.”

“This has given us all an interesting opportunity to slow things down a bit, to think through priorities and how we want to be when we get back to “normal”; and what we want that “normal” to look like. During a time when nothing seems certain, I prefer to think of this as a time when anything is possible…no one would have believed that oil producers would be paying people to take barrels off their hands! If this is possible, truly, anything is possible!”

841D4CFE-B0A8-40D7-A38A-3EB5BE4540BC
Mayor Arnold, when she isn’t at City Hall, she can be found on the Riverfront Trail, on her bicycle.

Thank you to the Mayor and to the businesses who are letting me share their stories. I do believe that New Brunswickers are resilient AF; we’ve had to learn how to pivot…pivot! More than a few times in our past and I have no doubt that we will get through this challenge as well.
We’re leading the country at kicking COVID’s butt after all. We will get through this by leaning on each other and by being kind to each other, which seems to come naturally to us.

I hope this post inspires you to seek out local businesses and service providers; let’s make supporting them a new habit. And maybe, once we are free to roam, let’s roam all over this beautiful province! We should also share the love with PEI and NS too, they’re pretty awesome as well.

If you haven’t yet subscribed to my blog, scroll all the way down and sign up!
Merci! muah!
Liette

Behind the scenes

I was inspired by my lemon them to ditch my signature pink color, temporarily, for this cheery yellow and I am kinda digging it!

Yellow1

Here are a few pics from my photo shoot with Ali. We had planned to shoot while it was snowing, but Mother Nature in the Maritimes won’t be bossed around! It started to snow, those beautiful, big fluffy flakes, 20 min after we finished.

463B0C46-2168-4301-ADBA-751CB6633E93
photos by Ali @radiantphotography

I’m a visual person; before I start writing any of my posts I need a theme or a vibe to inspire me. I was looking for an angle for this, support local, post when I happened upon this cheerful house in Sunny Brae with bright yellow doors!

Thanks to Mylène and her family for letting us use their house as our backdrop! She and her wife have a really cool neighborhood Instagram page: wherethepheasantsroam. Which just happens to be my old hood; check them out, they seem to have a cool bicycle gang!! Lol

B52E0E7D-8751-493A-B3B8-C44C1AD28A5E
Thanks to Monique for these lovely photos. Check her out on Facebook at: Made by Monique, she’s got some cool custom printing stuff.

FC4E7E56-6C5E-4D2A-8736-0ECCB28F6BB1

 

 

5 Bad Ideas to Avoid During Social Distancing

5 Bad Ideas to Avoid During Social Distancing

So it’s been 9 days of social distancing; here are 5 bad ideas that I am going to caution you against doing. But who are we kidding, you’re probably making your way through this list as we speak? Good luck you bad ass rebel!

Top 5 Bad Ideas

Bad Idea #1

There is something about being held up in your home that makes you want to cook; which is great right? You’ll make those homemade energy balls/bars that Buffy from the gym’s been bragging about; yes you’ve been meaning to make those for weeks, but you just didn’t have the time.
You now have all kinds of time, but who are we kidding; you aren’t going to be rolling oats and gluten free flour to make protein balls. No, you’re making a double batch of chocolate chip cookies! And some of you are eating the dough straight out of the bowl….am I right?

82192FBD-9FE1-4C31-8179-3EC41EE4BDCB

I got creative and made spring time chocolate chip cookies; they are just like regular cookies, but fancier! Obviously.

Bad Idea #2

Do not Dye or cut your own hair during a global pandemic!! The urge for a makeover is just going to get stronger as the weeks go bye; you must resist!! Your brain will start messing with you; sending you false messages like; you got this!! And how hard could it be?? Repeat after me; you don’t got this and it’s really, really hard!!

231E291B-11F7-45AE-8A35-1C750E6F1422

Also try to avoid dying your own hair pink on a Friday night; it’s not as cute on Saturday morning…so I’ve heard.
Hats will be our best friends in the weeks to come! I have lots, message me if you need to borrow one.
0354F6BB-4CB3-4EB2-8463-D6D5EAEABA78

Bad Idea #3

Cleaning and organizing is bad idea #3; now this sounds like the perfect activity while stuck home right? In theory it’s a great idea depending on your approach. Do not take everything out of your closet all at once, because half way through your spring cleaning you’re going to need a nap and when you wake up, you aren’t going to be as motivated as you were just a few hours earlier.
What will happen next can go two ways; the first will be to leave mounds of clothing on your bed and walk away. For the next three days you will move the clothes from your bed to the floor at bedtime and then from the floor back onto the bed in the morning. Or you will just take the mounds of clothes and shove them back into your closet and close the door quickly; pouff! Problem solved.

Bad Idea #4

We all know that we shouldn’t  drunk text; well the same is true with online shopping while bored. Yes, online shopping will give you an instant surge of endorphins, that will make you feel all warm and fuzzy. But that buzz will quickly fade once you start doing the math.
And honestly who’s going to see those four pairs of cute new shoes..OK, six cute new pairs while you are socially distancing?

Do you know what? I am changing my mind, this may not be such a bad idea? Those 8 pairs of new shoes will bring you joy while stuck in your house for the next few weeks. Keep them and wear them with pride!! I am taking #4 off the bad list; this is an awesome idea! Do it!!

Bad Idea #5

So you maxed out your credit cards on day 6; you’ve just finished your box of wine and you’re thinking that now would be a great time to drunk texted your ex!! Just to say hi or hey, if you’re a guy. Don’t do it!! Abort!!!
Yes, there’s something about a global pandemic that makes you yearn for connection with others; and really how bad was he/she??
Repeat after me; they aren’t your friend, they broke up with you via messenger and only reach out to you when they need something from you!! Go bake a double fudge chocolate cake or go trim your bangs; you got this!! Or hey! I think you need another half dozen new pairs of shoes!! Look how empty your closet is!

Good luck on avoiding these bad ideas; a great idea is to stay in touch with friends and family. We are all going to need each other as the weeks go bye. Stay safe and try to see the funny side of things when at all possible.

muah!!! Big virtual hug to all of you!!

Liette

(sign up below to receive my post, because, who are we kidding, you aren’t going anywhere anytime soon!!)

Facebook @oui-liette

03B95D93-321F-461A-A912-B5CD6CEE1F64

 

Loving London!💕

Loving London! 💕

I am kicking off February with some pics from my London trip.

This post is all about exploring a new city and loving every minute of it! And it features my favorite color, which is pink in case you were wondering, lol.

Afternoon Tea

Afternoon Tea in London is a must! We found a very pink place for our first London tea experience.

CEE5EA21-A2C3-40C6-9B0A-A9E941019EDA

We made reservations weeks ago at a place called  Sketch, it’s super trendy and very Instagrammable.

The Elan Cafes, there are a few different locations in London, also offer pretty places for afternoon tea.

The Sketch theme is Alice in Wonderland meets Marie Antoinette’s let them eat cake!

EFAD4517-E959-4CBD-A250-D31B2B62B650

It’s amazing how such tiny food can fill you up so quickly. We started with custard and caviar, then bite size sandwiches and sweets tray, then scones, they were my favorite; and finally cake!! Oh and there was tea of course.

35ED9D50-B852-4F1F-A43A-159AA7B6BAE1

The Tea Room is pink, but they do have a few other rooms. You’ll need to specify if you want the pink room.

70645654-1DE3-4737-ADB6-2A546C4E84A9

It’s such a magical funky place and the staff were very friendly.

And just when you thought that you’d seen it all; Sketch has one last big surprise for you. Here’s a hint, make certain to take your phone with you when you visit the restrooms.

4677E6B0-F9FE-4E87-ACD7-B63C36E789F9

These stairs lead to the most unique toilets I have ever seen.

1D6DFA92-7F84-405D-9738-9ED6A4917404

These egg shaped toilet pods are at the top of the stairs, and they are wild! You really feel like you’re in some funky fairytale storybook.

Everyone who walked in had the same reaction, “oh!”. And for the record, I wasn’t the only weirdo taking pics in the bathroom!

4B64F521-3C78-4A3C-9A74-DA260F7A0673

After our bellies we were full of tiny finger food items, we made our way towards the Grandby Street area.

On our way, we happened upon the most fabulous store front!

DCDF4118-EFAE-42DB-9E6E-B74D48233F53

It’s called the Maddox Gallery and it’s all decked out for Valentines Day!!

099FCB5E-C815-41E9-B951-47989DC710D6

This is my favorite part of exploring a new city, finding flowery, pink, hidden gems.

021B04AD-7263-4FD6-8E5A-DFEA075B4233

I think you love me? Yes, I do!!

Caranby Street has the coolest store fronts!! Lots of shopping and people watching.

FA0519C0-987E-49AA-B6A8-5CE4799A6DDA

On our way back to the hotel we spotted this pink taxi, sadly it was taken.

9EA80BD6-1A0E-4E88-A3C9-90381279D676

I promise that I am not making this up, but later that evening as we walked back to our hotel from dinner, we spotted these pink garbage bags. My friends thought I was strange for taking a picture of garbage, but I thought it was  the perfect end to our perfect pink day in London.

A71A3B42-E6DD-4197-8C8C-3A7FD00A1B53

Tomorrow evening we will be taking a haunted  walking tour. I’ll let you know if it was cool or not.

Happy February! 💕💖

muah!

Liette

Hey if you haven’t yet registered to receive my blogs via email, just say oui!

You can also follow me on Facebook and Instagram: oui-liette

18D6AE67-B895-4962-A228-9004D8F83B7B
I bought a few postcards on Carnaby St. I loved this young, pink, punk queen! #boss