Party Time

The first long weekend of Summer is HERE, and though we won’t be escaping to a cottage like so many of our Canadian counterparts, we’re definitely ready to celebrate right here in the city. We decided to throw a lakeside beach staycation at one of our favourite Toronto landmarks, the Sugar Beach! Dotted with white Muskoka chairs and pink umbrellas, there’s no better place downtown to spread out a towel and soak up the sun with friends. Especially when you have VEGAN PIZZA and a BIRTHDAY to celebrate.

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In honour of Canada’s 150th birthday, our pals at Panago created a limited edition Canada 150 box, illustrated by Chairman Ting, and you get to colour it in! Better yet, they also launched a new Vegan Canadian Pizza – with hot banana peppers, sautéed mushrooms, extra vegan pepperoni and dairy-free Diaya cheeze, it’s definitely a pizza that deserves a party.

With our soda pop and pizzas all packed up alongside pool floaties and sparkly flamingo sunglasses, we hit the beach! Has there ever been a better way to celebrate Canada’s Birthday?

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A special thanks to Jeanine and Amy for celebrating with us.

This post was sponsored, but all opinions are my own. To inquire about sponsored posts, please email jess@shineinfluencers.com

Dear DiaryParty Time

It’s scary how fast time is flying lately, don’t you think? Can whoever is holding down the fast forward button ~please~ let go and give us all a break already?!

This past week was the week of my 26th Birthday, and oh boy did it sneak up on me in pretty much every way. I’m the kind of person that plans my birthday months in advance, obsessing over every detail and worrying about every tiny thing that could potentially go wrong. I know it sounds silly, but I literally have nightmares about forgetting my birthday is coming up! I don’t have anything to say for myself, I’ve just always been a very extreme birthday princess.

2016 has been a crazy complicated year for me with a lot of hard work, a lot of emotional ups and downs, and a few challenges I wasn’t sure I could get past. In short, it was weird… so weird! Is this what being an adult feels like – everything just getting so intense and confusing and heavy? I’ve always prided myself on following my heart and living spontaneously, but recently I feel like every decision I make has such a serious impact on the rest of my life. In all honesty, it’s all very terrifying, and if you’d asked me a couple months ago I probably would’ve said I didn’t even plan on celebrating my birthday this year.

Luckily, I have some truly amazing people around me, and in the end I had one of the best birthdays ever (despite my crippling fear of getting older). The amazing team at Nordstrom invited Josh and I to be their guests at Dinner en Blanc, which just happened to be on the evening of my actual birthday. Perfect, right? But wait, there’s more! Revolve sent me the most perfect long white silk dress for the event, and I even found the perfect white fluffy shoes on sale! Very Carrie Bradshaw.

My birthday day itself ended up being a lot more relaxed than usual – Josh took the day off and we just hung around eating brunch and shopping for fresh blooms at the Avenue Rd. flower shops. It may not have been the over the top birthday of my dreams, but it was honestly so nice to have a day to slow down for once! Plus it was topped off with a ride in a vintage rolls royce and the most amazing outdoor dinner thanks to Nordstrom, so I really can’t complain.

But the second day of celebration (yes, there are always at least two) was truly the magical, glittering cherry on top. Miss Thing’s (aka my favourite restaurant in Toronto, hands down) hosted me and a small group of my nearest and dearest for a dinner I can only describe as epic. There was a bottle of pink bubbly, there was a freshly shucked oysters and there was a family-style spread of the best tropical flavours you can dream of. Oh, let’s not forget the crazy pretty cocktail served in a hollowed out watermelon! With each new round of service we were even more in awe, and though we were thoroughly stuffed we ate almost every bite of every plate (including the unreal dessert- you simply have to try the chocolate banana mousse!)

Though we were barely able to get home after all the food, dinner was followed by a party in the park that included a shocking number of wonderful unicorn people, and not one but two vegan cakes from Sorelle & co.

Though getting older came with a lot of pressure and intense feels this year, it also came with a lot of magical moments and the most amazing supportive family of friends that a girl could ask for. Even if I’m anxious about age, I don’t think I’ll be giving up on enchanted birthday celebrations anytime soon!

A special thanks to Miss Thing’s, Nordstrom and Sorelle & co. for making my birthday so sparkly!

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Dear Diary

In case you weren’t already aware, I had one of my best birthdays ever last week.

My amazing partner put so much work into making my day special, and he planned out everything from delicious breakfast in bed supplied by Kitten and the Bear, to my perfect For Love and Lemons birthday dress, and at the end of it all, an amazing “tropical paradise” surprise party in the yard with all of my closest friends. In the afternoon I went on rides and won a unicorn plushie at the CNE (all in a tulle skirt of course) and for dinner I probably drank my weight in champagne. My best friend Sarah even bought me a package to go horse riding with a friend at sunset on the beach, which you’ll surely see tons of photos of when I go with Paige from Bicyclette tomorrow evening!

The result was truly a magical day to remember, and I wanted to share some of my favourite moments with all of you here!

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Morning photos by me, evening photos by Brianne Burnell