Kristin

My photo
Rhode Island, United States

Monday, February 16, 2009

Home again home again

Hello all, and Happy Presidents day! I hope you're all enjoying the start to your week!!
I had a great weekend, and wrote in my journal every day to keep the blog updated... so get ready for a monster Montreal recap!!

Friday
(Written early Saturday Morning)
Greetings from across the border, and Happy Valentines day!
Even if I don’t post this today; at least you’ll know I did take the time to blog on my mini vacation.
I’m happy to report we made it in good time (well, up until a bit of a construction detour when we arrived in the city) and safely survived our first experience with what Nick refers to as the ‘crazy montreal drivers’. I understand what he means now.
Soon after I finished posting my blog yesterday morning, I headed to the Y to do a quick workout- my usual 35 minutes at level 10 on the elliptical, followed by one set of assisted dips/pull-ups to get some arms in during the time crunch- and I put the resistance up high, so I can actually feel it today!!
Back home I showered, we packed up the car and headed on the road. My first snack on the road was a big macintosh apple. I tried to keep my travel snacks fairly healthy because I figured this weekend would be one of indulgences!
For lunch I had packed a few things, but we stopped at Subway and I couldn’t resist trying their Chipotle Chicken Corn Chowder for only 140 calories and 3 g fat per bowl! I loved it- I thought it was creamy and spicy, very tasty for only $1.60- my only complaint? Not enough chicken!

I got my protein in with the 1 cup of 1% whipped cottage cheese I packed, and I also had a few carrots.
I snacked throughout the afternoon in the car, a little bit here, a little bit there. Some grapes and a cheese stick, a lollipop Nick got me at the bank (apparently it’s a ‘sucker’, not a lollipop according to him. Who calls it a sucker??).

I also tried something new- when we stopped in New Hampshire Nick HAD to get this “amazing beef jerky”.
Not being a big fan of processed foods, but curious because I love maple and Nick insisted it was amazing, I tried a piece. And proceeded to eat two more because I LOVED IT (ew, I know)… and had to make Nick keep the bag on his side of the car so I wouldn’t chow down on jerky!! I got hungry again shortly after we crossed the border and I had a few kashi crackers to hold me until dinner.


Like I said, getting there was easy, getting around Montreal was not. But, we finally made it to his sister’s apartment, I gave her the cupcakes I had made, and we decided to walk down the street for dinner. We made the chilly walk down the street to a Greek restaurant, where we got HUGE plates of delicious steaming souvlaki, rice, pita, greek salad and fries for less than $10. What a deal! Look at all this food!

I have to say I did stuff myself a bit… I had all but 2 pieces of souvlaki, about ¼ of the rice, 2 quarters of pita, all the salad and about 1/3 of the fries. All dipped in tzaziki, of course! Mmm, mm it was quite worth it!

Later in the evening we went out to the bar with Nick’s sister and a few of her friends. We saw a really good bad, had some fun with bubble wrap, I had a couple rum and cokes, which didn’t help too much with the chilly walk home (as small as I am, I hold my alcohol well) but did trigger some late night hunger… Back at the apartment I had another pita quarter and a few of these Smarties Nick’s parents gave him…

(I guess it’s a Canadian thing… they’re like m&ms ‘without the peanuts’ as Nick says… they’re not those little sugar caplets you get in a roll back in the states. These are much better!)
All in all it was a great first night! I can tell we’re going to have a lot of fun here.
Plans for today include food at some point (I’m starving and thinking about eating that clif bar in my bag, everyone else is still asleep!), maybe some sightseeing, and then a nice dinner out and going to see Nick’s friend in an Opera later on tonight! Should be a good time! I’ll update again when I can =)

Saturday was definitely not a typical day for me- Valentines day or not, but it sure beat the usual routine!

I never ended up getting a 'real' breakfast, mine ended up being half a chocolate almond clif bar and a handful (or two) of Smarties (the chocolate kind- hey, it was valentines day!!)

When I woke up I sat around and relaxed, attempted to get Nick to stir for quite some time but he wasn't budging... when he finally decided to get up (reluctantly, I was excited to start the day!!) we headed down the street for some groceries. It was very interesting grocery shopping in Montreal- most everything is in French first, and they had a lot of fresh meats, fish, and a whole fondue section which I thought was pretty cool!
We stocked up on lunch stuff and essentials- some bananas, nectarines and muesli with yogurt for my breakfast, oh- and more Smarties of course ;)

Back at the apartment we were very ready for lunch, so Nick and his sister made us one of their easy and yummy favorites- pizza bread! We used huge fresh Lebanese pita bread topped with seasoned sauce and mozzarella/cheddar cheese blend. I had two of these, along with a glass of lemonade!

I also had a few chips and a nectarine.


After our filling lunch Nick and I headed to Rue St Denis to do some shopping. We stopped at a few good stores- got some really good sales; Nick and I both ended up with nice black designer tops at Mexx for 75% off!! I also got a new lime green paring knife- I can't wait to slice something!!

After our shopping adventure we headed back to the apartment to change for dinner. I got to wear my new shirt!! We had early 5:00 reservations at L'academie a few streets over. It was BYOW, so we stopped at the liquor store next door to pick up a couple bottles. We bought two for the three of us to share- a Tuscan red for dinner (my request!) and a Sauvignon Blanc for dessert.
Dinner was fantastic! Being a special holiday, I decided to treat my sense with some love and enjoy exactly what I was craving!

We shared an amazing plate of fried calamari and some fresh bread and butter to start, and then ordered our entrees. Nick and I were both eyeing the veal and the gnocchi, so he got the veal and I got the gnocchi so we both could shared. I ended up having about two bites of his veal and all the vegetables, and he helped me with a good amount of my gorgonzola gnocchi!


Creamy as creamy could be, rich and cheesy, sinfully delicious! The two of us put a pretty good dent in this, we probably at about half- it was a HUGE bowl!!

Of course we had to order dessert- Nick ordered his favorite, Tiramisu (I had a big bite- yum!) and I ordered a delicious bowl of the best amaretto ice cream I have had to date- complete with caramelized almonds! Aside from two shared bites, I polished this whole baby off with a couple smooth glasses of white wine. Quite the satisfying dessert!


When dinner was over we went to the show- we saw Nick's friend play in the orchestra at McGill's Student Center's performance of The Yeomen and the Guard. Although neither of us are big Opera fans, the show was well done.

Afterwards we took a chilly walk to find a bar to hang out in for a while. I was cold and not too happy when we arrived but a couple drinks later I was warmed up and we had a nice time. The night ended with a rose Nick bought me from a street vendor that came inside the bar (told ya the boy is amazing, flowers twice in one weekend!)... and another handful of smarties ;)


Better than I expected, seeing as though I'm not a big fan of Valentines day. Having someone you love to shared it with makes it a helluva lot better I guess ;)

Sunday morning we finally had the chance to sleep in. I slept until 9:30, which is unheard of for me! When I woke up I was immediately hungry- so I grabbed a banana to have while writing in my journal.

After I had one of the organic muesli/yogurt combos I picked up at the market- sooo good, too bad we can't get these back home!

We laid around for a while all morning, then got up to make some lunch. We started with some leftovers from the night before...

and then had some pizza bread- I just had one half this time. So good!


A little while later we headed out to do some walking and shopping. Before we left I had lunch dessert- my first taste of Nick's favorite chocolate bar-

(we split this)

Oh Henry! Full peanuts covered in luscious milk chocolate with just enough creamy caramel and a chewy fudge center... Conclusion? Canadian candy > American candy. By far!! Definitely worth it's reputation.

We had a nice afternoon walking to the shopping center a few blocks away- Montreal is a very walkable city, it was nice to be ale to get some activity in while still having a relaxing weekend!

All the shopping made us thirsty, so we took a few minutes to sit down and grab Jugo Juice- I had a 14 oz Mini Mango fruit smoothie with mango, OJ and banana. Tres delicieux!


When we got home Nick and I took on the task of making dinner for the house. We made yummy pierogies with bacon and onions. Definitely not a light meal, but tasty it was! I kept my portions moderate...

I had three more, with sour cream, after this!

Nick and I rested for a while and then decided to go out for nicer drinks- no dive bar on our last night! We ended up at Le Pistol, a nice little restaurant bar his sister recommended for cocktails a few blocks away from her apartment. We decided on dessert and drinks. I started with a Lychee Martini, which I was very excited about because I love lychee, and the dessert special was Tiramisu- which both of us love! This one did not disappoint! We spent a couple hours chatting, I had two amaretto sours- clearly I'm a big amaretto fan ;)!


It was another really nice night, I was sad we were going to have to leave the next day!

This morning we slept in a bit, I had another yogurt/muesli and banana for breakfast, and we headed out by 9:30.

For lunch we stopped at Quizno's-I had a small tuscan turkey, which was turkey and swiss with lettuce, tomatoes, onions and roasted red pepper sauce on rosemary parmesan bread.
I paired it with a nectarine for more nutrients!



I did some studying on the way back, throughout the drive I snacked on a few of Nick's swedish fish, a small handful of smarties (officially addicted- did I mention they have way less calories and fat than m&ms?? So dangerous.) and a kashi bar.


Back home we made a quick dinner, because both of us were tired and hungry. We went for some classic japanese noodles, boiled in broth and drained, with hard boiled eggs, green onion and pickled ginger. I finished off this whole bowl, I was hungry!


I had such a nice weekend, I'm so not excited to start school again tomorrow!! Tonight I'll be getting stuff ready and relaxing, which is much needed after a long day of traveling!

Edited to add: Alright, not all chocolate is better in Canada! I was craving somethin' sweet, so I dug into 1/3 of this Newman's Organic chocolate bar my mom gave me for valentines day:

WOW, so creamy and chocolatey! Enough desserts for me though. After all the indulging this weekend, my pants are starting to feel tight and I am very eager to get back into eating healthy again!

Good night!
*Rest of pics up ASAP!*

2 comments:

VeggieGirl said...

WELCOME BACK!!

Oooh those Smarties bring back nostalgia :-)

chocolatecoffeekitchen said...

I went to McGill and I loved this post- made me miss Montreal like crazy though! Those drivers sure are insane though, they often speed up as you start crossing the street (which is fun). Glad you chose l'academie for dinner, it's the best BYOW in the city for sure!