Summer is the quintessential time for hosting get togethers and what better way to send off Summer with a rooftop crab boil!  While we do our fair share of hosting, we had never done anything like this before, so when Marco invited 15 of our friends over, I quickly got to planning!

First we set the menu, aside from the crab, and then it was time to get down to the fun part: the decor details!  I headed out to Place d'Orleans and explored several of the home stores and so began the planning of Crab Boil 2016...

The other night, we hosted some friends for a holiday Fondue Friendsgiving, which was not only our first dipping party, but also the first festive gathering of the season!

I'd love to share some photos with you if you'd like to see, along with my five tips for hosting...

This past weekend was definitely one for the books and one that has been in the works for a couple months.  Just like last year, we planned a cottage long weekend with 18 friends in Fiddler Lake, which was a grand time.

I'd love to share a bunch of pictures if you'd like to see...

Hi ladies, sorry for the late recap--I've been fighting an awful cold since mid-last week and I needed to rest up in bed today in hopes that the rest of the week is better.  

That said, over a month ago, Marco and I started planning a long-weekend getaway with our friends.  Similar to last Summer when we rented a cottage in Fiddler Lake, this time, a ski getaway at a beautiful cottage in Mont. Tremblant.  Since I was seriously fighting a nasty cold leading up to it, I made the best of it as I could, but forgo-ed major partying in lieu of sleep while others had way more fun #wompwomp...

The 13 of us stayed at this seven bedroom cottage just outside Tremblant village which was right on the water (and only a five minute drive to the hill).  There was a large kitchen, comfortable living room and three bathrooms which was perfect for the large group.

 More after the jump...

For the past three years, my best friend and I have gotten together to exchange Christmas gifts a few days prior to the holiday.  So, I packed up her gift and headed to her place for fajitas, gifts and good ol' one-on-one QT.

Since I've shared our annual tradition before I wanted to share again.  Sarah killed it and bought me a top and pair of heels I was coveting, some special ornaments, a candle and a bottle of Essie nail polish.  I gifted her with some heels she had been eye-balling (similar here) but yes, clearly she takes the cake (errr, pie) for being best gift giver.

More photos after the jump...
Happy Monday ladies!  This weekend was productive and enjoyable: I got all the laundry done, cleaned the condo and spent time with friends.  A well rounded weekend.  I've got a ton of photos to share with you so here we go...

Outfit deets:  F21 shearpa jacket (also love this one), Jacob sweater, Seduction denim, Aldo Klarr boots (similar mid-calf style here) & Aeropostale cross-body bag.

On Friday after work I ran some errands including hitting up Winners.  I snapped a selfie before going into the fitting room.

Clearly I have a distinct colour palette.  Who am I kidding?  If you've been following for a while, you know I'm a huge fan of neutrals which is why everything I tried on was black and grey.  That said, I didn't love anything enough to bring it home with me (and felt a little guilty too about spending money on myself when Christmas is just around the corner).

 Photo-overload after the jump...

I recently read on Joanna's blog about her starting an Article club and thought it would be a great way to see friends, meet new ones and do something different.   

I sent out a Facebook-wide message on my personal account inviting all ladies, from whatever walk of life, to come to my place one evening to discuss an article (instead of a book since that's far too time consuming), have some wine, snacks and general girl talk.  The post received great feedback with many girlfriends jumping on board, including ones wanting to be included next month if they couldn't make it this month.

The plan was that everyone reads the article before the gathering.  I set the date and so last night  there was about 10 of us who got together to discuss this article.  Everyone brought either a food or wine contribution and we ended up chatting away for hours--it's amazing how different opinions can be and also how much you learn about everyone and how many topics you end up going off on.  I can't wait till next month when we get together again to discuss something else!

Friday night get up.
Outfit deets:  Unknown sweater (my fave) from Winners, DIY'ed denim cut-offs (thrifted men's pants), Spring galdiator sandals (old) & an old Aldo belt.

On Friday night we celebrated my bff's birthday with a double date; dinner, go-karting & ice cream cake.  It was so much fun.

We recreated our picture from the winter with Zebes 2.0 with this extra massive giraffe at the go-karting grounds (see Zebes HERE and Zebes 2.0 HERE).

Saturday morning breakfast out with friends.  I've been switching up my scrambled eggs for poached soft.

Saturday post brunch.
Outfit deets:  Smart Set tank (old), Jean Machine maxi (current), Garage denim jacket, Urban Expressions bag, Le Chateau necklace & Gucci sunnies.

New bikini from Ardène.  I think I fooled some of you on the 'gram, the bottoms are tucked, it's not a thong bikini :P
Funny story about this bikini:  I follow Ardène on Instagram and they posted a picture of this bikini--and another one, same style--over a month ago.  I liked the photo but had never seen it in store.  Then I'm there shopping last week on my lunch hour and came across this and loved it.  It was only when I was going through my 'LIKE' folder on the 'gram that I realized I'd see this swimsuit before!  Until that moment, I had totally forgotten about it.

Sunday morning home-made breakfast (I splurged and got the Cavendish hashbrowns).

Sunday afternoon chill outfit.
Outfit deets:  DIY sweatshirt, Bench cut-offs, Spring gladiators (old) & Christian Siriano cross-body bag.

Sunday night home-made pizza.

On Monday morning (well, closer to noon), I met up with a bunch of friends for brunch.  My bestie's hubby snapped my outfit shots which I will share later this week.
Outfit deets:  Garage denim jacket, Forever 21 romper & Spring sandals (old).

On Sunday evening I ended up at the same rooftop spot as last week (and many times before this summer) with friends for an impromptu BBQ.  It really is an awesome, central location, with a great view and setting.  It's the perfect way to end a long--or regular--weekend.

Other exciting news:  my sister had her baby on Sunday night!  It was a boy and they have named him Bentley.  I went to visit on Monday afternoon and he's precious.  I will share a photo or two soon!

Last Labour Day, three friends and I spent a day at Calypso, a water park in Ottawa, filming a tv show called Xtreme Waterparks with the Travel Channel (you can read about the experience HERE).

It's been almost a year and the episode finally aired last Sunday night and it's so cool!  In this episode called, 'Getting Wet in San Diego', we are the first--of four--featured water parks in the show.  Our portion is about seven minutes long.  It's so neat seeing yourself on tv--in a bikini and without make-up, no less--and this is a great memento to have forever.  


See all my posts about the journey of Xtreme Waterparks HERE.

Although it wasn't the weekend, Wednesday night was a mini birthday celebration for a friend and this is what I wore.  I already had my faux-leather peplum top, I just swapped out my work attire for my Zara utility-style pants, wedges & an aysemtrical jacket to make this more casual chic.

This past weekend was so fun and I was so bummed last night that it was coming to a close.  Friday night the man and I went for sushi, which was great.  Afterwards, we headed to a friend's place for an evening of karaoke.  I don't ever sing in front of anyone, but the night ended up getting quite messy and hilarious (with a noise complaint and a visit from the 5-0 to boot!).

Then the handstands started...

...and wall sit contest...

...and then there were two (and I gave up next).

Saturday morning I thought I felt okay so out to breakfast with a girlfriend I went.
Outfit deets:  Garage denim jacket (new!), Marc Andrew dress (old), Ardène flats, Le Chateau pashmina & various necklaces.

We ate at The Standard, which I've really only known as a night-time hot spot, but the breakfast was quite delicious.  I extra enjoyed the in-house-made sausage patties (and I'm normally a bacon girl).

We did some shopping afterwards and then the awfulness that is a hangover kicked in.  I went from feeling pretty good to feeling terrible in the late afternoon.  Ugh.  I grabbed some Gatorade and took a nap, which helped.

That night ended up being a movie night (Identity Thief, it was okay) & the goodness that is peanut butter ice cream (omg).

Sunday I felt much better and it was a random day where the man and I did some shopping in various parts of the city, went out to breakfast, later sat on a patio for an early dinner & beers at The Firkin & Knight, got groceries and just general day-off-ness.

We later decided to swing by Skybox to catch up with friends and have a little BBQ snack to end the weekend right.

On Saturday, I attend the Governor General's Gala.  It's a formal, annual event held in Ottawa where they celebrate great Canadian performing artists.  The evening started with mingling amongst appetizers of sushi, mini quiche, bite size salads, small bbq'ed veggie skewers, rice balls on a stick and more.  The drinks were flowing and everyone was out in their best attire.

After about an hour, we were ushered into the large theatre where we watched different presentations, dances, speeches, the orchestra performed, etc. to celebrate each of the artists being recognized (I think there were seven of them).  There was an intermission and more recognitions, but the best part was the VIP After Party on the roof top.  Keep reading below for more...

The boys coorindated the rental of a limo for our evening to make it extra special, however, upon arrival, the A/C wasn't working.  It was one of the hottest days of the year and just standing around on the front stoop here, we were melting.  Can you imagine piling all these peole into an un-air-conditioned limo?!  Yikes.  In the end, we ended up driving ourselves there.  Sad faces.
Again with the Baguette-Me-Nots photo ops.
Once there, the food and drinks were flowing.  On the left is the dessert table which was served at the end of the night with huge cheese platers.  It was also my first time trying les macarons (they were ok).  On the right is a duck confit bite-size salad which I could not get enough of--I must have ate about five of them!
 The entire group, clearly having a great time--please note the drinks in hand.
 Nearing the end of the night as we can tell from the tie situation.
A panoramic view of the roof-top tent area.  Hard to see but there was a ton of food, drinks (they were strictly serving Belvedere vodka, if you wanted vodka #ohyoufancyhuh), a live band that included a celo, beautiful chandeliers, and just a great time overall.
And a fun shot of Eric Peterson and myself.  He is a Canadian actor on the television show Corner Gas and was being honoured that night.

See more (and different) pictures on Instagram under our make-shift hashtag #SkyboxGovernorsBall2013

(All photos taken with my iPhone 5 & a friend's Android).
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