Nostalgia and cake…

At 9am this morning I was standing in my kitchen with a satisfied smile on my face after admiring the cake I just finished icing.  I got to do what we all love(d) doing when we were kids: lick the spoon.  There’s a guilty pleasure in standing in your kitchen, donning pj’s at 9am and having chocolate butter cream icing for breakfast.  At that moment, I was hit with a wave of nostalgia so fierce & so intense it brought tears to my eyes.  It also made me miss my grandfather a whole lot at the moment.  It was him, along with my mom that taught me the more simpler pleasures in life: baking.

As a professional Chef who is taking a totally different learning curve in hopes of switching careers, I’ve been thinking a lot lately of the journey I’ve been on for the past 20 years in my career and how it’s played a huge role in my life and the person that I am today.  It was only this morning that I realized it had actually started a lot earlier in life.  Not just in any kitchen, but in my mom’s kitchen.  At both of their knee’s making cookies, cakes and other assorted things that were nothing short of homemade awesomeness.  It was in my mom’s kitchen that I learned how to do things the old fashioned way.  With quality, care and as cheesy as it sounds; lots and lots of love.  Sitting on my knees watching my grandfather with rapt fascination making pie, getting flour all over the place, the way my grandfather would smudge flour on the tip of my nose, the eager anticipation of the cake finally being done and my sister and I each getting a beater with left over cake batter and being able to lick the bowl, eating raw cookie dough with no fear of getting sick and the lovely smells that would permeate though the house while something yummy was in the oven.

A time and place where things were simple and un-hurried unlike now.

Who knew that those moments, as simple as they were; would be the one thing that taught me the fine art of taking one’s time. The pride and satisfaction of doing a good job and not cutting any corners.  By doing it by hand, one ingredient at a time as opposed to opening a box.  It all started there, in my mom’s kitchen and perhaps subconsciously carried me through all these years.  It’s taken guts, hard work, a lot of determination and some serious balls to make it this far in such a male dominated industry.  My grandfather and my mother taught me the value of doing it good and doing it right and working hard to achieve the desired results.

I miss my grandfather always, today though I miss him a little more then I normally do.  I used to drive my mom crazy when she would come home from work in the wee hours of the morning only to find that I had destroyed it by experimenting with something in the kitchen.  It was worth it, every single minute.  It’s going to be hard to leave my life as a Chef behind when I finally do but it’s been one hell of a ride with more twists and turns than a roller coaster ride.  However, it’s led me to be able to do things like this:


Thanks mom, I love you and of course to my grandfather, the man who was my hero and who’s face is forever etched into my skin beside my heart where he belongs.  I’m in part who I am because of you and I love me.

It’s a beautiful thing.

So is that cake! 😉

A Message by George Carlin:

The paradox of our time in history is that we have taller buildings but shorter tempers,
wider Freeways , but narrower viewpoints.
We spend more, but have less,
we buy more, but enjoy less.
We have bigger houses and smaller families, more conveniences, but less time.
We have more degrees but less sense,
more knowledge, but less judgment,
more experts, yet more problems,
more medicine, but less wellness.

We drink too much, smoke too much, spend too recklessly, laugh too little, drive too fast, get too angry,
stay up too late, get up too tired,
read too little, watch TV too much, and pray too seldom.

We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our values.
We talk too much, love too seldom, and hate too often.

We’ve learned how to make a living, but not a life.
We’ve added years to life not life to years.
We’ve been all the way to the moon and back, but have trouble crossing the street to meet a new neighbor.
We conquered outer space but not inner space.
We’ve done larger things, but not better things.

We’ve cleaned up the air, but polluted the soul.
We’ve conquered the atom, but not our prejudice.
We write more, but learn less.
We plan more, but accomplish less.
We’ve learned to rush, but not to wait.
We build more computers to hold more information, to produce more copies than ever, but we communicate less and less.

These are the times of fast foods and slow digestion,
big men and small character,
steep profits and shallow relationships.
These are the days of two incomes but more divorce,
fancier houses, but broken homes.
These are days of quick trips, disposable diapers, throwaway morality, one night stands, overweight bodies, and pills that do everything from cheer, to quiet, to kill.
It is a time when there is much in the showroom window and nothing in the stockroom.
A time when technology can bring this letter to you, and a time when you can choose either to share this insight, or to just hit delete…

spend some time with your loved ones, because they are not going to be around forever.

Remember, say a kind word to someone who looks up to you in awe, because that little person soon will grow up and leave your side.

Remember, to give a warm hug to the one next to you, because that is the only treasure you can give with your heart and it doesn’t cost a cent.

Remember, to say, ‘I love you’ to your partner and your loved ones, but most of all mean it. A kiss and an embrace will mend hurt when it comes from deep inside of you.

Remember to hold hands and cherish the moment for someday that person will not be there again.

Give time to love, give time to speak! And give time to share the precious thoughts in your mind.


Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.

Word of the day: TRUTH

Some people need a high five, in the face. With a chair.

Others, well they just need a clue.

Some people would disagree with me and the method I occasionally use.  However I feel that it’s better to know, in spite of how hurtful it may be as opposed to not knowing at all.  Which is why I generally don’t play the same game that boys generally do. Which is to ignore the person or problem in the hopes that it will go away.  Clearly men who do that, have no balls.  They think that they’re sparing our feelings but in reality it’s just plain insulting and makes us want to plot revenge against your sorry ass.

It takes character and a spine to tell someone how you really feel.  Even if those feelings aren’t exactly nice.  Bottom line is, not everyone is aware of their actions.  They might acknowledge it in their own mind, however it puts a whole new spin on things when someone else has the guts and the integrity to tell you just how they feel.  There ARE ways to do it without being catty, vengeful or mean.  In my opinion, even if you were; I would at the very least respect you for being true to yourself and having the guts to be straight with me.

Which brings me to this:

Eons ago I started talking to a guy for a brief period of time.  Nothing ever came of it, in fact we never did meet.  Recently I got an e-mail from said person wondering what I’d been up to and to be perfectly honest, I didn’t even remember who he was.  I admitted as much because i’m honest like that and he was considerate enough to remind me.  The issue? He did it ALL wrong.  So that being said, I thought that I could perhaps just let it go and move on -OR- I could steer him in a better direction. Maybe.  In any case, I admire the fact that he had the balls to be that honest with a total stranger.  That takes a lot of guts and I admire that.  Although on the other side of the coin, it’s not what you say; sometimes it’s how you say it…


I live in NDG and I think you do as well. Indeed.

I’m 33 and younger than you, if my memory serves me correct. No, no it does not.
Probably told you I have not been with many women, so my experience is lacking, but am a great kisser and a huge fan of oral sex.
All guys are alleged to be HUGE fans of oral sex, did you really play that card?  Also, there was a HFMD outbreak at work, my lips have finally lost the $5 hooker appearance but still… 
Definitely would say I’m a giver in that sense. Umhm…  Compensating?
I’m 5’6″ about 150lbs with brown hair and eyes.  So you’re short. Yeah.
I remember you being bigger than me, WTF?!? Um yeah likely because I’m taller than you by several (4 inches) and must resemble an amazonian giant to persons of your height or shorter. 
but we didn’t share much since you were doing laundry… Right. Laundry. The bane of my exsistance!  However I also seem to recall that he didn’t make any effort after that and I don’t chase after people…
That’s pretty much what I remember and probably what I shared with you. Indeed.

If it isn’t obvious already, what I was THINKING is in italics.  However this is my actual reply:

Sorry about the delayed reply, my phone didn’t notify me that there was a new e-mail in this account.  I rarely check it, as I mentioned previously.  That being said:

You’re correct.

If your birthday falls after June 12th you would be younger.
Yes, you did mention that to me previously.  Now I have a better recollection of who you are.
Bigger than you? Wow. Of all the inappropriate things to say to a woman, that would be on the top of my list.
Friendly piece of advice, don’t do that.  I am TALLER than you are & aren’t a skinny bitch either, but didn’t need anyone to point that out. So thanks for that.
Yeah I also never heard back from you at that point and I don’t make a habit of chasing guys around either.  The effort is two fold and goes both ways no?
See what I did there?
So after thinking about this for a while, I thought to myself I’m going to unleash the truth on a few other guys who deserve it   need a reality check.  I’m good like that!

WTF moments…

OK, I love my mom. She’s totally bad-ass and all around awesome.  With one exception: when she calls me at work on a Monday afternoon for two reasons.

  • To let me know that the family dog Belgium had a litter of puppies…
  • To ask for my address & to let me know that I needed to obtain some bank information for a branch that’s close to my work.

That’s it!!!!

Her response to that? Well I wanted to catch you before you left so you had time to head to the bank and you could e-mail me later on when you got home.  It’s called google mom.  You would be AMAZED at the information that you can find online. 😉

Bear in mind I live in one province, mommy dearest lives in another.  So when my mom’s number appears on my phone in the middle of a work day, I obviously assume the worst, have a mini stroke and then pick up the phone.

For that ^ >.<

Also, my cell company… GOOD LORD!

I have a plan that has 10 international buddies which should offer me unlimited calling to ten people of my choosing ALL ACROSS THE WORLD. Hence the term INTERNATIONAL.  So yeah I was a little pissy when I got a huge ass phone bill charging me for calling someone in Nebraska. Three times!  So I e-mail them and this is what the response that I got was:

Greetings Stephanie,

You’ve reached Amanda with Virgin Mobile and I would like to thank you for your patience while awaiting a response. I can certainly discuss your national Buddies. I completely understand where you’re coming from and why you’d like to ensure you’re being billed fairly.

National Buddies are for calling Canadian numbers while in Canada. Being able to call within Canada to a Canadian number is national calling. It appears your service is working perfectly based on the services you signed up for.

I trust this clears up how your Buddies work, Stephanie.

All the best,

Listen up Amanda!

This don’t clear up shit! Why? Because I don’t have the national buddies plan, mine is supposed to be international!  *face palm*

On a final note, I’m going back to school.  I need a permanent code since I didn’t go to school in QC.  So I contacted the government authority that I was supposed to contact, and was a little taken aback by their response:


Thank you for writing to the Ministère de l’Éducation, du Loisir et du Sport. 

In response to your question, we would like to inform you that, in order to obtain a permanent code, you must present your immigration documents to the school where you want to study. They will then send a request to the MELS to have a permanent code assigned to you. However, please take note that, if you have submitted a request for financial assistance to a person responsible for international cooperation programs at the MELS, or to a person responsible for the faculty of graduate studies at your university, he or she will take care of requesting a permanent code for you. In any case, you must wait until you have received your documents from the Ministère de l’Immigration et des Communautés culturelles. 

We hope this information is to your satisfaction. 


Violaine Forget

Dear Violaine,

I’m a Canadian. WTF?!?