A Canada Day and Birthday Celebration Combined

Hello! I hope that Canadian readers had a great holiday weekend, and that American friends are enjoying July 4th.

We had a little “double-duty” get-together on Monday afternoon, to celebrate our much loved longtime friend Leslie, whose birthday falls this week, and also to commemorate Canada Day. The birthday part was a complete surprise to Leslie, which made it more fun. She’s such a caring and lovely person, who deserved to be fêted.

The group was Leslie and her man Niall, our buddy Andrea (who has also become friends with Leslie) and her boyfriend G, and me and Nick.

Some of my favourite stories and photos to see online are ones featuring get-togethers and parties, so, if are are like minded, here are some photos of our gathering.

Nick rolled his eyes when I told him all the serving pieces had to be red and white, to stick to the Canadiana theme, but he’s such a good guy who understands how I feel about things looking a certain way.

We used a combination of thrifted (detailed in this post, this one and this one), vintage and new things.

The solid white Corelle plates are our everyday ones. They’re the first dishes I got for my own home just after finishing university, filled in with thrifted replacements along the way. So, it seems I’ve always collected Corelle. I still pick up the white ones when I find them, but the real thrifted treasures are the printed ones from the 60s and 70s, such as the “Butterfly Gold” side plates we used on Monday.

While all of our more recently acquired tablecloths are from the thrift-store, I just had to have the round cotton red and black buffalo plaid one I spotted on Amazon, so I used some gift money to get it. I’m very happy with it and can envision using it at Christmas and Valentine’s Day, as well, so it’s a new textile that will get a lot of use.

Another new item on the table was the large ceramic soup mug that looks like it has an enamelware finish. It came with a lid and I found it amoungst the regular dishes at Marshalls.

The third new item was the Canada flag tea towel, which I got in Kensington Market, at Eurolins on Baldwin Street. When Leslie saw it she proclaimed her state of “tea-towel envy”!

I also got Leslie’s gift there (seen below) and my maple leaf bandanna, which was an impulse purchase at the register.

So, with the addition of a handmade decoration (made following the how-to in this post), a vintage (Made in Canada!) jar filled with wild flowers and maple leaves from our garden, and some pine-cones I found scattered on the ground under a massive tree the other day, I think we nicely pulled off the Canada Day theme.

The birthday girl …

↑ As mentioned, the kimono robe we gave Leslie was from Eurolins on Baldwin near Augusta in Kensington Market. It came in many different colour combinations, but I think I picked right with the light green. She loves it, which is the most important thing! ↑

The rest of us …

The food …

We had a bbq which Nick manned. We started with grilled shrimp with a dipping sauce, and then served homemade black-bean burgers and hamburgers (made with beef from Sanagan’s in Kensington Market — I mention that because this is such a good shop and I want to give them a shout out. They only offer locally sourced meat from ethical family farms.)

I also made a quinoa, corn, pistachio and currant salad, which everyone enjoyed.

The cake …

My goodness, the cake! It was spectacular! Andrea made it following Martha Stewart’s recipe for “Hummingbird Cake“. The flowers are made of thin slices of pineapple, which she dried in the oven.

The drink …

Leslie (and Niall by proxie) brought over a special bottle of sparkling wine for us all to share. It was “The Silver Line Blanc de Blancs Sparkling” made in the Niagara Region (Canada) by G. Marquis.

Other details …

↑ The maple syrup can is a souvenir from our anniversary trip to Quebec City, a couple of years ago. ↑

Thank you very much for reading. xo loulou

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