My Closet: Jean Vest Updated

jean vest 1

Lately I’ve been avoiding online shopping. Frankly, I’m just too good at it.

With that in mind, I was online shopping and I just so happened to come across this little jean vest a few weeks ago. The best part? It only cost me $14.00 (shipping and taxes included). I had secretly been coveting it since my one year old niece got one. Now we can be twinsies. Adorbable right?!

jean vest 3

Okay I know what you’re thinking “but Ursula, didn’t jean vests go out of style in the 1980s??” Well my friend, you have a point. They are rather 80s but when paired with modern attire, I think they can look updated and cute. I definitely would avoid pairing it with acid wash jeans and cut off t-shirts….just saying :)

Jean vest 2

I got mine from The Gap but they’ve since sold out. Levi’s sells a similar one.

Jean vest 4

What do you think, jean vests, are they a yah or a nah? 



3 Ingredient Salad: Beet, Goat Cheese & Peashoots

beet and goat cheese salad I

I made this recipe a couple weeks ago and shared it with my friend Steph. It was such a ridiculously easy recipe that it hadn’t even occurred to me to share it on the blog until Steph recommended I post it. So here you go; if you like it then feel free to give kudos to Steph :)

What I used:

  • 4 beets (medium in size)
  • a handful of peashoots
  • 2-3 tbsp of goat’s cheese
  • optional: balsamic reduction sauce

What I did:

Peel your beets with a vegetable peeler. Side tip: wear gloves to avoid dying your hands bright pink. 

Start by bringing a pot of water to a boil. Once boiling, place your beets in the water and wait until cooked. It should take approximately 45 minutes. Try placing a sharp knife in the middle of the beets and when it slides through easily, your beets are cooked.

Remove the beets from the boiling water and place into a pot of cold water to help bring the temperature down. Take your warm beets and slice into quarter pieces. Next add your crumbled goat’s cheese and peashoots and mix it all together.

This salad is delicious without any dressing; however, if you’d like some extra flavour, garnish with balsamic reduction sauce.

Recipe makes approximately 4 servings.


beet and goat cheese salad II

What’s your favourite beet recipe? 



Cilantro Lime Vegetables with Coconut Rice

Today I’m guest posting on my cousin Sam’s blog. Remember Sam? She made this delicious recipe. Anyways, I decided to make some coconut rice with cilantro lime vegetables. It was absolutely delicious and super duper easy. You don’t need to a culinary chef to make this dinner.

Aaaaand it’s vegan and gluten-free so none of your picky eaters get left out.

Check it out by clicking here!


As per usual, I welcome your feedback. Was this recipe easy to follow? Did you like it or hate it?  

Let me know and have a happy Wednesday



For Your Bookshelf: A House in the Sky

book review

My sister recommended this book to me last winter. I remember humming and hawing about it until I finally bit the bullet and bought my own copy.

Now, almost 8 months later I still think about it and it continues to bother me immensely. Like any great story, it’s changed me and it continues to rear it’s head in my thoughts as I carry on with life.

A House in the Sky recounts the tale of Amanda Lindhout, a Canadian journalist, who was captured in Somalia and held for 15 months under horrific conditions. What has stuck with me most about Amanda’s story is her resiliency. Despite enduring a nightmare in captivity, she continues to act as an advocate for women’s rights in Africa. Resiliency in people is a topic that forever fascinates me. It helps me believe that despite our tragedies, we are all survivors.

After finishing the book, I started researching the story online. What I found surprised me. Many people criticize Amanda for going into Somalia in the first place. Instead of acknowledging her for the survivor she is, they deem her naive for going into a country that is notoriously dangerous and where ransoms occur all to frequently.

Isn’t the role of a journalist to expose the unknown? Don’t we revere our journalists who report the news even in war torn countries? No person’s life is worth a media story, but I think we do expect our journalists to go where they aren’t supposed to. Why is Amanda being painted with a different brush?

She is also criticized for having an “ego” and being “narcissistic”. But keep in mind she was in her early twenties when she first traveled abroad and starting working as a journalist. I vividly remember thinking I was invincible at that age. Honestly, what twenty year old doesn’t? Part of being a young adult is realizing your own mortality and that despite living a sheltered life, you are susceptible to pain and danger.

This tale unfolds like a mystery that can’t be solved. Amanda wasn’t captured alone. She was taken along with an Australian photographer who has also published a book recounting his version. His account differs quite a bit but I find myself attached to Amanda’s version. Her grace following the release of this book is admirable, especially given the harsh backlash she’s received. That being said, like most things, I suspect the truth probably lies somewhere in the middle.

So this winter, I recommend you buy this book and read it carefully. The story is beautifully written and I hope that, like me, it will get you thinking. Thinking about resiliency and the expectations we place on journalists who risk their lives to bring us the news.

What have you read lately that’s ‘stuck’ with you? What do you look for in a book? 

As you can probably tell, I loved this book and I’m a huge supporter of Amanda’s work. If you don’t feel the same way, let me know! I’d love to discuss further. I think learning comes from discussion and being challenged so don’t be shy. 


Want more information? Check out this interview.

Warming: after watching the video, I recommend you review some of the comments to get a sense of the backlash to her story. To do so click on the YouTube icon at the bottom right and it will take you to the page where viewers have left comments and opinions. As someone who has studied trauma, I would argue that some people verbally recount their stories with a sense of detachment. It’s a survival tactic and not indicative of accuracy or sincerity. 


My Backpacking Trip to Peru

Happy Friday!! Today I’m guest posting over at Camila’s blog The Things I’m Crazy For. Camila’s leaving Canada and moving to Scotland. In other words, she’s trading poutine for haggish and I can’t wait to read about her adventures.

I decided to share some of my own adventures from the time I backpacked Peru (gulp, six years ago). It seems like it happened a lifetime ago, but I still remember it vividly and I can’t wait to go back

So I would strongly recommend you go check out here. I promise to be forever grateful!

Aaaaand since we all love teasers, here you go:

Peru 1Peru 5Peru 2

Have you ever been to South America?