livingfamilytravelmediahome decor

2011: The Year That Was (Part 1 of 2)

I'm going to be self-indulgent here and look back at the year that was on Coffee with Julie ... perhaps I'll learn something or perhaps I will learn that I need to learn something in 2012! January 2011: The new year started on a very high note when I found out that Coffee with Julie had placed 2nd and 3rd in two Canadian Weblog Awards. Then I started a thread of posts on over-consumption (I had so many other posts I wanted to write about on … [Read more...]

Giveaway: Tickets for Svengali Ballet at National Arts Centre

"Svengali: A person who manipulates or exerts excessive control over another." The origin of the word we know commonly know as "svengali" is actually from a novel published in 1894 by George Du Maurier. In it, a singer named Trilby is captured by an unsuccessful musician, Svengali. Svengali manages to live a life of luxury by keeping Trilby under hypnosis, performing concert performances and living as his slave. In 1931, this same plot line … [Read more...]

Ottawa’s New Ikea: Bigger Isn’t Always Better

People go on and on about how much they hate Walmart and how evil it is. But you rarely hear the same people talk about Ikea with the same vehemence. I even checked: Google results for "I hate Ikea" are 13 million, where as "I hate Walmart" delivers more than 58 million results. And we all know that Google knows everything. After making my first visit to the largest Ikea in Canada, I find this rather perplexing since I would much rather shop … [Read more...]

The largest Ikea store in Canada


If you don't live in Ottawa, you might have missed the breaking news: we have a new Ikea store. Not just any Ikea store, mind you, but the biggest in Canada (for now). 427,000 square feet. There was quite a bit of real excitement in Ottawa about this new store, as well as some manufactured excitement (like the press release warnings that traffic on the Queensway would be slow due to opening day, but in actual fact, numbers for the store … [Read more...]

Worried about the waistline this holiday?

I definitely need to lose a few pounds. But I'm not crazy enough to think that's going to happen over the Christmas holidays. The sheer amount of food and temptation at this time of the year is enough to put even the most disciplined any person over the edge! So, in the meantime, I'm going to take solace in these vintage advertisements. Won't you join me? More ads can be viewed (and deeply enjoyed!) over at Babble. … [Read more...]

Happy Holiday Wishes to You!!!

May you be grateful. May you be merry. May you laugh so hard that you pee your pants just a wee bit. image credit … [Read more...]

Christmas Gift Wrapping


I never would have thought of using paper doilies for anything except snowflakes (remember making those as a kid?). But I happened to have seen Guilia's wrapping and then happened to see red doilies in the dollar store. So here is how I've wrapped Stella's teachers' gifts this year. I love how they turned out! If you want to try it, you'll need: Brown paper bags (Michaels) Paper doilies (The Dollar Store) Glue for sticking the … [Read more...]

Super Sweet Christmas Vignette


With my new found love for vignettes, I couldn't help but take notice of this gorgeous little vignette that my neighbour had created in her front hall. It's unfortunate for you that I only have the camera in my BlackBerry and zero photography skills. But trust me, this vignette is so super sweet. What you can't really see from the angle on this photograph is that the wooden frame is actually made specifically for hosting vignettes. I love … [Read more...]

10 Grand Gifts for Kids: $30 or Less!

We all know Christmas spending can easily get out of control. But really, most young kids like a $20 gift as much as a $200 gift -- they don't know the value of money, it's just about having some fun! So, in that spirit, I thought I'd share some gift ideas that I think are "winners" under the $30 price range. Some are products that were sent to me to review and some are simply things I've come across on my own. 1. Walrooz sleds: These … [Read more...]

It’s December. Christmas is now allowed.


This is how I feel about Christmas when I see all the gaudy decorations and hear those brain-screeching carols before December has even hit: Seriously. This ornament is just so perfect (with big props to Coffee with Julie reader Giulia for sharing this with me today!). I am a total Grinch about Christmas in October. And November. Only come December do I feel that Christmas is actually allowed. Thank you very much. But I am not a total … [Read more...]

DIY Design: Suggestions for Painted Wood Furniture?

Full frontal view

I really like the look of painted wood furniture. Hubby, though, loves wood so much that it is almost sacriligious to suggest painting it. However, after forcing him to look at countless samples online, he has relented and said he'll paint some of our wood furniture for me! Yipee! (Here are some of the samples I've shown him: a cobalt blue dresser, this groovy credenza, and for kids' rooms, things can get really fun.) Pretty much everything we … [Read more...]