edmonton blog

The Edmonton Oilers

The Edmonton Oilers spill their fourth hot chocolate in a row and the barista, feeling bad, makes them another one. The Oilers watch with glee as this drink is topped with whipped cream, sprinkles, and syrup before being served. Finally, the barista turns to the counter to take the order of the Buffalo Sabres, who have been waiting at the register for almost 20 minutes.

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How To Be Happy

I’ve had my fair share of bad days this year. As much as I strive to be a happy person every minute of my life, that just sadly is not a possibility. Everybody has bad days. Everybody has days when they feel like their world is falling apart. When nothing feels like it’s going right. When you want to fall asleep for a very long time and forgot about what’s happening around you. 

But these bad days? They’re only days. A lot of these problems that you and I face can simply be fixed by taking a deep breath, looking around and appreciating the world for what it is. I often get caught up in the stress of school. After 12 hours of studying, I inevitably get stuck in a bad mood. I begin to get angry at the world for forcing me to study in an institution where a 4.0 GPA isn’t something that can just fall into my hands. But sometimes, I have to take a step back. I have to make myself admit that maybe studying isn’t the worst thing in the world, maybe compacting all this knowledge in my growing, maturing brain is a valuable thing. Maybe I should be grateful that I’m studying at one of the best universities in Canada and I’m on my way to a fulfilling career. 

Life is no easy task. There’s not one person in this world who lives an easy life and if you think you should be the lucky person who deserves only good days, then I am here to inform you that you’re wrong. Life is hard. Life is challenging, but it’s rewarding in more ways than one. This had been one of the toughest years of my life, but also surprisingly one of the best. I’ve slaved away in the library for weeks, but now I have the good grades to show for it. I’ve had more friend drama in the past couple of months than I’ve had in my whole life. But, I learned the power of friendship. It made me open up my eyes to the realm of forgiving and forgetting and came to realize what’s important in life. With each of the challenges I came across in this past year, I have learnt from them. They have all contributed to my growth. I’m almost twenty, it’s about time I started learning how the real world operates. The real world is not gentle. It’s not nice. You’re going to have to work hard and play hard for what you want in life. But life is a wonderful, magical, extraordinary journey and I wouldn’t change it for anything.    

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“1.push yourself to get up before the rest of the world - start with 7am, then 6am, then 5:30am. go to the nearest hill with a big coat and a scarf and watch the sun rise.

2. push yourself to fall asleep earlier - start with 11pm, then 10pm, then 9pm. wake up in the morning feeling re-energized and comfortable.

3. erase processed food from your diet. start with no lollies, chips, biscuits, then erase pasta, rice, cereal, then bread. use the rule that if a child couldn’t identify what was in it, you don’t eat it.

4. get into the habit of cooking yourself a beautiful breakfast. fry tomatoes and mushrooms in real butter and garlic, fry an egg, slice up a fresh avocado and squirt way too much lemon on it. sit and eat it and do nothing else.

5. stretch. start by reaching for the sky as hard as you can, then trying to touch your toes. roll your head. stretch your fingers. stretch everything.

6. buy a 1L water bottle. start with pushing yourself to drink the whole thing in a day, then try drinking it twice.

7. buy a beautiful diary and a beautiful black pen. write down everything you do, including dinner dates, appointments, assignments, coffees, what you need to do that day. no detail is too small.

8. strip your bed of your sheets and empty your underwear draw into the washing machine. put a massive scoop of scented fabric softener in there and wash. make your bed in full.

9. organize your room. fold all your clothes (and bag what you don’t want), clean your mirror, your laptop, vacuum the floor. light a beautiful candle.

10. have a luxurious shower with your favourite music playing. wash your hair, scrub your body, brush your teeth. lather your whole body in moisturizer, get familiar with the part between your toes, your inner thighs, the back of your neck.

11. push yourself to go for a walk. take your headphones, go to the beach and walk. smile at strangers walking the other way and be surprised how many smile back. bring your dog and observe the dog’s behaviour. realize you can learn from your dog.

12. message old friends with personal jokes. reminisce. suggest a catch up soon, even if you don’t follow through. push yourself to follow through.

14. think long and hard about what interests you. crime? sex? boarding school? long-forgotten romance etiquette? find a book about it and read it. there is a book about literally everything.

15. become the person you would ideally fall in love with. let cars merge into your lane when driving. pay double for parking tickets and leave a second one in the machine. stick your tongue out at babies. compliment people on their cute clothes. challenge yourself to not ridicule anyone for a whole day. then two. then a week. walk with a straight posture. look people in the eye. ask people about their story. talk to acquaintances so they become friends.

16. lie in the sunshine. daydream about the life you would lead if failure wasn’t a thing. open your eyes. take small steps to make it happen for you.”

— Sixteen Small Steps to Happiness

I haven’t done a Make It Yourself Monday for the longest time and this one almost happened out of accident. My friends and I decided that it was the perfect day to bake cookies so we made these delicious S’mores cookies. However, it wasn’t until afterwards, as we were eating the cookies, that I realized I should have taken photos of the process for ze blog. So alas, the next day, we made the cookies again. We didn’t care, the cookies were that good. Seriously, these might be the best cookies I’ve ever had. 

You will need: (for about 25-30 cookies)

  • 1 ½ cup flour
  • 1 ½ cup coarsely crushed graham crackers
  • ¼ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ½ lb butter
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • ¾ cup white sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  • mini marshmallows
  • chunked chocolate

1. Start crushing up 1 ½  cups of Graham Crackers into course crumbs. We used a fancy hammer to crush up the crackers in a ziplock bag, but rolling pins or your fists work just as well.

2. Combine 1 ½ cups of Graham cracker crumbs, 1 ½ cups flour, ¼ tsp baking soda and ¼ tsp salt in a bowl and mix well. 

3. Cream together ¾ cup brown sugar, ¾ cup white sugar, and ½ lb butter (aka a cup of butter). If you are thinking to yourself that this is a lot of butter, you’d be right. These cookies are definitely not healthy, but boy, that butter makes them good. 

4. Combine the dry and wet ingredients until they are mixed well together. 

5. Stir in 1 cup of chocolate chips. We may have added a lot more than 1 cup… I really like chocolate.

6. Drop two ounce cookies onto an ungreased baking sheet and bake in a 350 degree oven for eight minutes.

7. Take the cookie sheet out of the oven and press about four marshmallows and four chocolate chunks into each cookie while they are still soft. 

8. Return the cookies to the oven and bake for an additional 2-3 minutes. 

These are the perfect summer cookies. Nothing screams summer louder than S’mores and cookies combined together. I have a feeling these are the only cookies that we will be making all summer and that is quite all right with me. 

Are you going to try out this Make It Yourself Monday? Tweet me (@whenimolderblog) or Instagram me (@taylorlainee) pics if you do! I would love to see how yours turns out.