wine weekend

One night when I was around 11 years old, I heard a steady knocking coming from our basement as I got ready for bed. I don’t know what spooky things I was expecting to find, but I do remember holding my breath as I tip toed down the stairs.

It was just my dad hammering some DIY-wine bottle racks together; nothing frightening (although, I guess Dad with a hammer could be a bit of a scary sight). Thus my first exposure to wine appreciation was at home—kid-Katie thought white wine was pretty tasty, but red was revolting. Am happy to report that my taste buds have evolved.

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champlainI’ve always liked my home town, but after spending a summer as a tour guide on Parliament Hill a few years ago, I think I truly fell in love with Ottawa. I spent my days trying to show off the city to visitors from near and far — how could I not be smitten with the capital as well?

I was thrilled last summer when I had the opportunity to take over Ottawa Tourism’s Instagram account for a weekend, and I was thrilled again when they asked if I’d like to be their first “local expert” featured in their new #OttawaInsider series. Click to continue reading…

Capital Staycation: Ottawa, je t’aime

Mosaika on the Hill; Friday fun at Sidedoor; Maman; Notre Dame

Mosaika on the Hill; Friday fun at Sidedoor; Maman; Notre Dame

We’ve been called coma city and the town that fun forgot; a dull government town, and we won an award for Canada’s most boring city (from a Toronto group, duh). All that, of course, is silly and way off. We Ottawans might have a little chip on our shoulder when it comes to our city’s reputation, but we know how vibrant the capital is.
View from the Peace Tower; the beautiful Library of Parliament; under the tower's clock; the locks at the Rideau Canal

View from the Peace Tower; the beautiful Library of Parliament; under the tower’s clock; the locks at the Rideau Canal

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“Gin-stagrams” [G&T sorbet]

Spotty lens, Seattle scene

Spotty lens, Seattle scene

So one day, I’m strolling through a surprisingly balmy Seattle park, and the next I’m running back inside for an extra layer as I rush off to my first day of school. One day I’m sipping on cool, boozy sorbet, and the next I’m craving the cozy familiarity of a pumpkin spice latte. Excuse my Ottawa Valley girl talk, but like, woah. …Where was the transition between seasons? Not that I’m relegating G&T slushies/sorbet to the summer months, but for now they will probably be saved for rare, special homework-free weekend celebrations. G&T It feels like I’ve been (happily) on the go since I returned from Spain, and I was tiring myself out (happily) traveling before that. So I really cannot complain, but as I start getting lost in readings, labs, and field work things might start slowing down and you might see a little less of me around here as I try to focus on that school work. However before I go, I’m excited to tell you guys that I’m the “official instagrammer” for Ottawa Tourism this weekend! You can follow along on my staycation adventures in the capital at @kshap17 and @ottawatourism. Are there any Ottawa moments you think I should share with the social media world??G&T slushieAnd lastly, of course, this awesome gin & tonic sorbet. A fool proof recipe that can be found over at The Boys Club. If you’re a fan of the classic cocktail, then this is for you. Enjoy the taste of summer a little longer. Cheers, and happy weekends. xo
(This one is dedicated to my girl, Dylan– happy belated birthday!)20130905-221529.jpg