Fun in the Sunshine Coast

view of Georgia Strait
View from the terrace
Not really in the mood for out-of-town trips lately, but my dear 🐻, suggested a short getaway in one of the Islands of British Columbia.

Me: "Okies my dear 🐻, all the planning!"
🐻: "Challenge accepted."

One day, he said that he is looking at Sechelt, and wants my input in choosing our accommodation. Soon we found ourselves a good catch in AirBnb.

Friday, just right off from work, my dear teddy bear picked me and with no time to waste, we zoomed to Horseshoe Bay, because of my dear fiancé's superb driving skills, we managed to catch the ferry right on time😝!

Reminders: You don't need to ferry reservation; just plan ahead and arrive early at the terminal!

Catch of the Day Sechelt
Watch out of the fish sign!

Catch of the Day Cottages...and it's indeed a catch!

It's my first time staying in a log cottage, and it looks like exactly what I have in mind - like the one in old fairytale illustrations, rustic, charming, but it's equipped with modern appliances to fit modern living needs.
There's terrace garden outside, nice patio where we can enjoy the gorgeous view of Straight of Georgia; sometimes cruise ships can be seen passing by according to our host.

Sechelt Cottage
Our Cottage!
After few minutes of rest, we started exploring the town and noticed instantly how quiet it is for a Friday evening, a stark contrast to the hustle and bustle of big city during weekends, it's a nice short escape from the chaotic feel of the city; we stopped at a liquor store to grab ourselves some drinks to enjoy our evenings with. 
We watched the sunset in the garden terrace, we were hoping there's a luxury cruise ship passing by to watch. Theres none but the gentle sound of the water rushing to the rocks was enough to sooth our tired body, then call it a night.

Saturday in Sechelt

smoked salmon buildings
Smoked salmon bennies waffles
My teddy bear chose Gourmet Girl @ Pier 17 for breakfast. Conveniently located beside the Davis Bay, their waffles were very good starting meal for a busy day.
berries and cream waffles
Berries and cream waffles 💖
We started our day walking along Davis Bay, while reminiscing our recent trip in the Philippines, we reminded each other that this would be one of our countless great memories together and there will be more to come.
Being raised from the east, now based in the west coast and had a chance to travel around the globe, I am glad that I experienced immersing in the waters of the east and west part of the Pacific Ocean, It's like listening to a story from opposite perspectives.

I started beach combing right away and found myself some nice  treasures --- sunbaked driftwoods for my air plants (see photo below); the shores were covered with pebbles and there are stacked rocks on display which inspired me to make my own, although I am no master of stone stacking but I added a playful touch on mine:

balanced pebbles
Make it stylish!
One of the suggested activity by our cottage host was to check out the Farmers' Market, the biggest on the Sunshine Coast.
Sechelt farmers market banner
Sechelt Farmers' Market banner

shoppers in Sechelt farmers' market
Morning shoppers in Sechelt farmers market

It's my first farmers market outside Vancouver, and was looking forward what their market has to offer. I noticed right away the abundance of art works made of beached trinkets, can't help admiring them that I admit that I splurged a bit 😉 and bought something for my mom back in the city. 
dried lavender
Dried lavenders
Aside from artworks, there's plenty of local produce, preserved fruits, and baked goods; we were intrigued by the melonpan being sold by one of the vendors as it resembles concha,  my 🐻's favourite bun. We were both too full to try all the goodies, we told ourselves that we will be back in Sechelt farmers' market anytime soon.

Two Birthdays And A Wedding

"I am very sure Canada as a Cancerian is a very caring country, she welcomes everybody with open arms, encourage their growth, watch over her people's well being...."

Vegan cake
Vegan strawberry vanilla cake

<---this is a very beautiful strawberry vanilla cake from Edible Flours, unfortunately because of extreme warm weather during its transport it kinda affected its presentation...😓

I made a promise to myself to not fear aging; I just turned 35 recently.

The same age of the lead character of one of my most favourite TV series to watch back when I was in Manila. The show is about the complicated and exciting personal lives of four ladies in the big city in the States, the lead character is a writer, has a weekly column, and loves her designer shoes, but she doesn't seem happy.

At the age of 35, my love life is something I wish for everybody to have: sweet, uncomplicated and hopefully lasting, our wedding is coming this November. My favourite accessories are my shawls and I'm looking forward to the time where I am going to have a few designer shoes. I don't have a weekly column, but WEGO is where I share all of my joyful experiences in my travels and my life here in a Vancouver. 

Paper bags of goodies
My special birthday tea & birthday specials from The Body Shop
It's quite unfortunate that there is lack of appreciation for getting older. We generally dread it. When we were kids, we all look forward for our birthdays, then once we become adults, we eventually stop mentioning our age and we never mentioned our birthdays at all.

Our reasons are understandable. 

I am trying to change the way I think about aging. I figured that it would be better to start earlier by welcoming each number as another friend; a friend that will tell you that more good things are coming.

Seafood Pasta
My birthday dinner in Joe Fortes

How did Emily celebrated her Birthday?

When Emily Goes Out is all about celebrating my life experiences. Working on my blog is a celebration, my happiness and my way to constantly remind myself that there is something to be rejoiced about. 

WEGO is still 6 months young and there still so much to learn on how to be a better blogger; but to my delight, my blog was recognized by fellow blogger a few weeks ago! I went out to treat myself a little and inspired me to keep on blogging even though life has become a bit more hectic

Last Day Of Being 34 

The day before my big day I booked a nice afternoon tea in Pâtisserie Für Elise with my sister, as we are both fan of afternoon or high tea. 

Afternoon Tea
Layers of goodness!

Heritage House Vancouver
Cute house in the city 💖

<---This house has been in Vancouver
since 1893!

I had Darjeeling tea to paired it with this --->
and also came with quiche

Entering Pâtisserie Für Elise is like being transported to a different time! The venue is a Queen Anne style heritage house, with all things pink and girly interiors.
La vie en Rose! 💓

After our afternoon tea bonding time, my sister brought me one of their flavoured loose leaf tea (Crème Brûlée) as a treat. Feeling guilty after the treats we spent the night walking around Downton Vancouver, and took advantage my birthday discount from The Body Shop.  

It was a great day, why not celebrate now when technically it's already my birthday in Manila!

Enter 35

And on the big day, my dear 🐻 planned everything, he kept it as a surprise! I was spoiled by my dear 🐻 by buying me a nice purse for my everyday use, which i received several complements!
We went out for a walking tour around Downtown Vancouver, and get to know the early history of the city's red light district. I have already been to others walking tours in Vancouver, and i enjoy every single one of them, I find it very educational and i appreciate the visual and sometimes interactive aspect of it while listening to the stories of the tour guides about certain places.

My fiancé knows that I love seafood especially oysters that he brought me to Joe Fortes for dinner, and their Lobster Oil--it is something to die for and it's not safe for dieters!
I indulged myself with oysters, by ordering the fried and raw oysters; the raw one for myself and the fried oysters to share with my dear fiancé. Oysters is one of the food that he finds threatening as he is not a big fan of seafoods. (but i kinda make him learn to eat sashimi though...)

Joe Fortes lobster oil
Joe Forte's complementary bread and Lobster Oil 
Raw and fried oysters
Raw and Fried Oysters for me to enjoy! 
...and oh  I got myself a free drink from Starbucks!...and i will write something about my Starbucks experience really soon...

Starbucks Frappuccino
Free frappuccino from Starbucks

WEGO Blogger Recognition Award

Emily in Camellia Tea and Coffee
Celebrating my recognition in Camellia Tea & Coffee
When Emily Goes Out  have been nominated for Blogger Recognition Award by Navneet Sandhu Brar of Virtual Orchards. This recognition is one of the best Birthday gifts ever, which is coming this weekend :)

Virtual Orchards is a collection of Navneet and her contributors' articles about living an enriching and beautiful life. The writers inspires their readers to grow spiritually and be the instrument of positive change to everybody even though life can be unfair sometimes.
It's a blog made out of love of sharing all things beautiful like my blog When Emily Goes Out.

When Emily Goes Out and tells her story

My blog is my testament of every celebration, of all things that I only dream about when I was growing up in Manila, from going to hip coffee shops/ food joint to travelling to other places I only see on tv or read on magazine.
It's a proof that everything is possible when you have a vision of what you want to be. Lately I decided to write with the encouragement of my dear husband-to-be🐻, every great experience that I had, to also remind myself that life had been kind to me and continuously presenting me new experience that I will cherish. 

Searching for the next batch of nominees

Words of wisdom to other bloggers

Be Authentic. Be honest with ourselves about what blogging meant for us. So many of us want our blog to be the source of our income, and that is ok. Me too...someday, it would be nice, but I seem to notice that in order to bring the cash in we may need to blog something that doesn't necessarily represent who we really are, ending up not enjoying the process at all, and that is not what i want WEGO writing experience to be.
With money or no money, I decided to have a time of my life whenever I am sharing my experiences, and just have faith that opportunities will present itself.

Connect with fellow bloggers, participate with any activity that has to do with networking when you join support group for bloggers; there are so many of them on Facebook alone.
Respect the rules and give positive feedbacks to other bloggers.

Day Trip in Naritasan

Our 2017 Philippine vacation had at least 30 hours of layover in Japan, a country that fascinates me for a long time. To make our brief visit to the anime land worthwhile we really did our research thoroughly and worked around from our hectic flight schedule. 
Mt. Fuji from plane
First glimpse of Mt. Fuji

Airport locker in Narita
Airport lockers in Narita International Airport
Coming from Oyama Station heading to Narita Airport; we woke up early to avoid the rush hour of Tokyo's transits. It was a hectic ride; several transfers and relying on transit workers for directions. 
Once we arrived in the airport, we placed our luggage in a locker, had a quick Starbucks breakfast and waited our tour guide from Narita Rainbow Tours in the designated meeting place.

Few hours in Narita Airport and want to do something cultural?

Akane showed on-time, warm greetings were exchanged, she gave us a brief information about our trip was about, and we hopped in to our train heading to Downtown Narita.

Naritasan Omotesando -- a charming shopping spot

Omotesando, Narita
Lines of shops on the way the temple

The road leading to the historic Naritasan Temple (Omotesando) was filled with rows of shops and restaurants, according to our guide that the road has been busy for centuries; the pilgrims would stop by these shops on their way to the temple and later on tourists came as well. 

The side street of Omotesando is decorated with sculptures of Oriental zodiac, i regret that i was not able to take photos at least one of them 😒. Some shops were setting up, some were closed. Akane was enthusiastic introducing us to the shops' products: from rice crackers, bbq eel (the area's specialty), pickled vegetables and interesting kitchen gadgets; she was very informative about which shop offers samples and which one are popular.
We saw a stand that sells dorayaki--- a small pancake filled with red bean! My 🐻 bought one for us to share; for someone who is used to having sweet bean for a treat, this one is has a subtle sweetness into it and i can taste more of the red bean—it’s soo yummy!

red bean dorayaki
Red bean dorayaki

Flying with ANA

ANA in YVR airport
Our plane approaching
All Nippon Airways claims to be the inspiration of Japan. If that's the case, I hope they are inspiring other airlines too.

I have flown back and forth between Philippines and Vancouver a couple of times and ANA is the first airline company that had me looking forward for my next flight.

All smiles service ANA attendants
ANA attendants
I am impressed with the quality of their service. ANA attendants seem to have a genuine grace and warm smiles as they serve the passengers, they were attentive and very organized and their flight meals are 👍.

We flew economy class this time and we are looking forward to the opportunity to fly business and first class in the near future. 

My flight with ANA economy class provided me a service that is more than I expected. 

I was in total heaven when I found lullabies and music-box-style tunes in their media selections--they read my mind--I need those kinds of music to combat my fear of turbulence😓.

We were provided with a bottle of water and a bag of rice crackers with mixed nuts as soon our airplane stabilized in the air, and this was followed by another round of refreshments in a few minutes. Then less than an hour after the second round of refreshments, our meals were served.

Meals from YVR to Tokyo (Haneda)

Flight meals dessert from yvr to haneda mario gelati
Gelato for dessert (above)
(right) baked beef patty and potatoes
edamame and tamagoyaki,
mac and cheese with salmon,
pickled vegetables
multigrain bun, butter and cream cheese.
flight meal all nippon airways

all nippon airways meal yvr to haneda
My Teddy Bear's meal.
Hot drinks are offered after the meal and the choices were: coffee, black tea, and green tea. I am glad that they make sure that passengers are hydrated during the long flights.

Our breakfast: (Beverages not shown)

flight meal breakfast all nippon airways
Yogurt, cheese in a multigrain bun and apple slices

My Narita to Manila flight meal:

all nippon airways meal from narita to manila
Beef Sukiyaki with tofu and egg slice, cold noodles (sauce provided), vegetable salad with soy and citrus sauce, and chocolate cake for dessert.

My Narita To San Francisco flight menu and meals:

ANA menu
ANA menu from Narita to San Francisco flight

All Nippon Airways Flight meal from Narita to San Francisco
Chicken and mashed potatoes with noodle, sliced fruit, vegetable salad and dinner roll with butter and cheese
All Nippon Airways Flight meal from Narita to San Francisco
Second option menu, mixed veggie and chicken on rice, cold noodles, macaroni with smoked salmon
All Nippon Airways Flight meal from Narita to San Francisco
Our breakfast before landing in San Francisco Airport: Pancake, egg, sausage, and broccoli with mixed fruit and yogurt

I encouraged my dear 🐻 to apply for loyalty miles in ANA by registering our miles from our 2017 trip. We are planning to go back to Japan someday and for sure we will be flying with ANA again.

ANA, you inspired me to travel more!

Few words from ANA's spokesperson 😃:

(My) Mon Paris in Burnaby

Eiffel Tower
I consider Paris as one of my favourite cities, and she probably has a piece of my heart. I remember the summer 2011, where my sister and I visited Paris.

Late last year, while walking around the neighbourhood, I passed a place that has a potential spot among my “favourites”; I noticed the illustration of an Eiffel tower with a heart on it as a logo —it send the message to me clearly, the logo is something I can relate to, the love of city of Paris; then there’s the word “pastries” - now that’s the magic word! But the sign also said: Coming Soon—that got me curious and swore that I will come back once this place is ready.

When Emily comes back:

We were in the early steps of wedding preparations: there’s checking of venues, searching for possible caterers, and recently checked a place where we where considered for our wedding favours. There’s a lot of things going on that I forgot about the heart on an Eiffel Tower logo.

One rainy Friday afternoon, my other partner in indulgence, my sister decided to meet up. She mentioned this new bakery that she wanted to try out - - -Mon Paris

The place with the heart on a the Eiffel Tower logo! I didn’t really see the the whole name the first time I passed by it. I am thankful she mentioned this place and I was so excited to finally have the chance to try it!
cheesecake and st. honore
Our first order from Mon Paris

Inside Mon Paris we were greeted by the decadent displays of chocolate Easter eggs, croissants, and other pastries. 

We were completely hypnotized by all the goodies, they are all talking to us: “try me, buy me, try me…”, it is a small place and we felt the only unoccupied table will be gone as soon another customer shows up, so we grabbed the table and proceeded ordering right away.

Easter  egg chocolates
Easter chocolate special

Warning!!! Not safe for dieters!!! (NSFD)

We both ordered London Fogs for a drink; it has few pieces of lavenders floating which we found it cute; we had a hard time deciding which sweets to order with our tea as they all looked tempting! 

While ordering I kept glancing at display of the rows of the colourful chocolates beside me; they all looked elegant. 

Row of chocolates
Mon Paris chocolates

That’s when I decided to choose Mon Paris chocolates for my wedding favours! My sister seems to think that it’s a great idea and volunteered to cover the wedding favours as her wedding gift for me. 
The owner of Mon Paris Chef Elena Krasnova, was present at that time, me and my sister discussed with her that we’re very interested ordering boxes of chocolates for my upcoming wedding.

We were absolutely impressed with our orders; the presentation is sophisticated, the taste not too sweet; Chef Elena mastered creating masterpieces from blending all the different flavours and textures.

St. Honore
St. Honore

Mon Paris Strawberry cheesecake
Strawberry Cheesecake

Enjoying our dessert I thought about grabbing several pieces of Mon Paris goodies for my teddy bear’s upcoming birthday, but I can’t wait for few more weeks so before we left, i grabbed a box nine of chocolates for my 🐻 to enjoy.

Crusing? Are you on board?

Cruising is not for everybody, from someone who loves being in the water or anything seascape, I understand how uncomfortable it would be if Mother nature decides to rock our watery cradle as we sleep along the way---not fun at all. But all the amenities and activities in the ship helps to alleviate your insecurities in travelling the waters.
Deck of Pacific Princess
I am grateful to experience cruising from my previous job. My Alaskan cruise left me with great experiences one of them is i get to participate in a champagne fountain, and the great deals in the ship's stores helped to jump start my other hobby: Collecting crystal figurines (Photos will follow up soon).
Here's some of my photos from my trip in Alaska cruise via Princess Cruises.

Greetings from Skagway
Servers, chef and cooks doing their presentation, for our last night of cruising
Passing through the Great Glaciers
Bye Ketchikan!

Morning Wisdom From Jethro's

WARNING!!! Not safe for dieters!!! (NSFD)

My gastronomical Guru, Denny's taught me that "Anything can be solved over a stack of pancakes". Then Jethro's Fine Grub came along with a sign with bold statements that caught our eyes:

Jethro's Fine Grub sign (back)
Jethro's Fine Grub sign (front)

Not really in the mood for having bacon for breakfast, but it gave us an impression that they take their bacon seriously. That's good sign.

It was a weekday so there was no long line up which regularly happens in several popular brunch places in Vancouver area during the weekends.
We have a table ready and the service is fast; the attendant gave us a Mexican hot sauce right away which I really appreciated. I always ask for hot sauce when I go to brunch places. They also regularly check if we need our coffee refill.

Smoked Salmon Benedict vs. Apple Cobbler French Toast

There's a lot of great choices from their menu; it took me awhile to choose between Smoked Salmon Benedict and Apple Cobbler French Toast that I forgot to take a photo of their menu. I decided to order the Smoked Salmon Benedict instead of the other, and my 🐻 ordered The Gold Rush.
At that time we were not really in an adventurous mood (but would be ordering Crab Cake Benedict next time we visit)

While waiting for our order, I enjoyed the funny illustration on their wall. For sure it's an offensive joke for vegans and animal rights advocates, but I can see the humour in it.
Jethro's Fine Grub indoor display
Bacon is all that matters!

My dear 🐻's facial expression was priceless when he saw his's huge! He was speechless for few minutes. I gladly proceeded to enjoy my Benedicts and shared some of my hash browns with my dear 🐻. I am also having some bites of the yummy huge pancake.
I remembered messaging my sister about wishing she's with us, we need reinforcements 😂! I even saw the customer's order beside us, french toasts--- and the slices of each toast were thick!
Jethro's Fine Grub Benedict and Gold Rush
Serving comparison

Jethro's Fine Grub Smoked Salmon Benedict
My order: Smoked Salmon Benedict
Jethro's Fine Grub Gold Rush
And his order....The Gold Rush

What's in The Gold Rush? A giant pancake stuffed with banana, pecans, streusel and caramel. Topped with whipped butter and more caramel, pecans and streusel!

We  both enjoyed it (I actually loved it) but we couldn't finished it. One of the attendant provided us a take-out box with an instruction on how to reheat our generous leftovers.

Want to accept the challenge?

Jethro's Fine Grub has two locations: the Dunbar location and the Fraser St. location, so there are two battlefields to choose from:

Jethro's Fraser Street Location

Next time, we will be bringing an army to share the giant pancakes with. I guess from their sign it might sound like having too much of good thing is great, but the real joy is sharing it with people who are special to us.

Half eaten giant pancake Vancouver
We need another empty tummy to help us...