30 Before 30

Now that I’m nearing my quarter century birthday I’ve decided to lay out 30 things I want to do before I hit the big 3-0. This means I’ve got about 5.08 years to tackle some major tasks!

I was inspired to make this list by Katie over at Live Half Full, and I even borrowed a few of her ideas! I thought it was a great way to identify some things I want to accomplish in the future plus I’m all about lists.

30 Things to Accomplish Before 30

1. Visit two new continents.
2. Improve my cake baking and decorating skills.
3. Grow my own food!
4. Take Mango About Town to the next level.
5. Remodel the bedroom: new bed, new dresser, and some art.
6. Run a half marathon.
7. Publish a scientific paper as a first author.
8. Have a place to call home for more than one year.
9. Be spontaneous. Not everything in life should be on a to-do list.
10. Create a fitness routine that works for me.
11. Obtain some more letters behind my name: MSc and PHEc
12. Go back country camping.
13. Stock a 9-Bottle Bar
14. Climb another mountain.
15. Meet some blends!
16. Go back to Italy and visit the places I didn’t get to.
17. Own a Kitchen Aid standing mixer.
18. Own a high powered blender.
19. Visit new places in the province: sand dunes, waterfalls, hiking trails.
20. Present at a major scientific conference.
21. Visit two new American cities (Short list: Portland, NYC, Nashville, Chicago, Boston)
22. Go on an all inclusive, relaxing vacation.
23. Master pastry making.
24. Seriously consider leaving the province if the opportunity presents itself.
25. Try new foods and cuisines.
26. Work and relax smarter.
27. Send Christmas cards to my friends and family. Everyone loves mail.
28. Keep in touch with friends more.
29. Master Italian.
30. Give more hand made gifts. They require more thought and effort.

Let’s chatSomething I missed on the list? Have you accomplished anything on this list? What do you want to do/what did you do before you turn(ed) 30?

Friday Favourites + Weekly Reads

Short weeks are fantastic! I’m so well rested, I got so much done in 4 days, I ate so many fries and gravy, and I made great Gilmore Girl progress; this week couldn’t have been better. Ok, maybe an ultimate win could have made it better… 

This weekend I’m headed off for some more rural adventures so with that I’ll leave you with some favourites + reads and we’ll chat again next week! Adiós!

Ps Happy Long Weekend American friends!


I’m officially a Professional Home Economist! You can all refer to me now as Melissa, PHEc. Just kidding (kind of..). But wait, what is a PHEc?

It’s sprouting season at the Mango house. Again, when Mr A is away Melissa plays (with food).

Sprouting Mung BeansSolid weekend at the lake, despite the snow. Long weekends are the best.

Going to Montreal! I can bet this will be a reoccurring favourite until the middle of June when we get back. I’m very excited to eat all the delicious food and see all the pretty things.


Meiji Sushi, again + a Martini

Homemade chicken noodle soup 110% from scratch, and it was damn delicious.

The aforementioned fries and gravy x 3. Funny enough I have no photographic proof.

Homemade chickpea + spinach curry

Sprouts! They are so cute and so delicious. Everyone should try their hand at sprouting.

Weekly Reads

I’m linking up with Heather, Jill and Clare today for some Friday shenanigans.

Let’s chatWhat should I try sprouting next? What are you up to this weekend?

Weekend Snapshots

Happy Monday! It’s a long weekend in Canada (thanks Victoria!), so my weekend isn’t really over yet. I wanted to drop by with what I’ve been up to so far and also some exciting news!

Friday night Mr A and I hit up Nuburger + Banana Boat for date night. He was leaving early the next day on a work trip so we wanted to have dinner together before he left.

Nuburger SmakshotWe both had the Smakshot Burger, which featured Smakdab Mustard and was for the playoffs + all the fries, of course. It was fan-freakin-tastic (so was the St James Pale Ale). We also Snapped a nice ice cream cone photo outside of Banana Boat – who wants to be SnapChat friends!?

Banana BoatSaturday morning I hit up an 8am Moksha Flow class because, well I was up already. I then made the trek to Stonewall to visit the McLeod Tea House for lunch. I had peach apricot tea with egg salad and broccoli cheddar soup.

Lunch at McLeod Tea HouseAfter that we made the trip north to visit the family. We saw a meeting of pelicans (yes, I made that up), watched movies, and cuddled with the pups. Oh, also it snowed.

Weekend at the LakeThe rest of my holiday Monday will be spent getting home, maybe hitting yoga, and doing a little food prep for the week.

Now for some exciting news: Mr A and I are officially going to Montreal! Send your shopping, eats, and touristy suggestions my way! I can’t wait to have smoked meat + bagels for every meal.

Today I’m linking up with Erin for Weekend Snapshots!

Let’s chatWhat is a group of pelicans called anyways? How do we feel about snow in May? What were you up to this fine long weekend?

Friday Favourites + Weekly Reads

Wooo! It’s time for a much deserved long weekend and I’ll be headed out to the lake! In typical May long weekend fashion it’s supposed to rain the whole time, but I’m not going to let that stop me from having an awesome time with my family and my puppies <3

I’m spending tonight with Mr A (maybe some NuBurger will be involved) and I’m hitting the road Saturday afternoon. For now, I’m going to leave you with some of my favourites from the week & maybe I’ll be on the blogging ball and catch up with some Weekend Snapshots next week.

I hope you all have a fantastic (long) weekend!


I bought myself some pretty lilies for our table! Crossing things off my spring bucket list.

LiliesMy new Fabletics are on their way here and need to be picked up! If you’re interested in checking Fabletics out, feel free to use my referral link!

Favourite: Starting Ultimate Frisbee this week. Not favourite: having a hybrid panic/asthma attack in the middle of the field. :|

New Toms! Florals are my fav.

Floral TomsParticipants! Participant recruitment for my study has been picking up lately and I couldn’t be happier. Yay for science!


Cupcake and candy bar at the Human Ecology Grad.

Cupcake and Candy BarBrunch at Promenade. That raspberry jam <3

Brunch at PromenadeChicken, chicken, and more chicken. Dinner + leftovers from my mom’s 9lb chicken. The thing was massive. #eatlocal

Sautéed shrimp + pasta. Gettin’ our omega-3’s.

Shrimp and PastaHoney Nut Cheerios. Yes, you read that right – they make a delicious bedtime snack.

Weekly Reads

I’m fully aware that I’m about three weeks behind in blog post reading but I want to make sure to show off and share all of the posts that really strike me as being awesome + informative.

Linking up with Heather and Clare for some Friday Shenanigans.

Let’s chat!What are your weekend plans? What’s your favourite bedtime snack?

My Favourite Foods: Honey

I love honey, especially local honey. It absolutely has a permanent home in my kitchen and I go through jars like no one’s business. Honey has favourite food status in my kitchen, and today I’m going to tell you why.
MFFHoneyI buy 99% of my honey locally (the other 1% is usually not by choice) and I think that buying local honey is amazing for more reasons than you may think:

  • You’re supporting the local economy and local farmers!
  • You get more product variety: buckwheat honey, creamed honey, creamed honey with various flavours added (lemon, cinnamon, etc.)
  • It tastes better than the stuff from the store!
  • AND the honey farmers often sell other bee-related goodies like candles!

Check out my awesome honey collection:

Honey Collection

Honey has several uses including: Sweetener in recipes, sweetener in hot tea, and eaten by the spoonful (in my kitchen anyways).

Here are some of my favourite recipes featuring honey:

Whole Wheat Honey Oatmeal Bread

Freezer Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups

No Bake Almond Butter Chews [I use honey instead of brown rice syrup]

Honey Storage: I keep my honey at room temperature or in the fridge. If you find your honey getting hard and crystallized you can warm up your jar by running warm water over it or in the oven (in an oven safe container) at a low heat. Never microwave your honey to make it soft because it will ruin it in the long run!

If you’re looking for more information The Kitchn has a great resource about honey colour and purchasing honey.

You can check out some of my other favourite foods here: oats, eggs, black beans, hemp hearts, and eggplant.

Let’s chat! – What’s your favourite use for honey? Do you buy local honey?

Friday Favourites + Weekly Reads

Happy Friday! It’s been a while since I was able to get one of these posts out, but that’s good for you because now I have lots to share!

Let’s get right into some favourites from the past week (or so)


Buds on my orchid! I received a beautiful orchid last summer and I’ve managed not to kill it thus far. It must really like me because it grew a new stem and at least 7 flower buds.

Stay-cation! This past weekend Mr A and I celebrated our anniversary in style with a stay at Inn at the Forks and a massage. It was so nice to just remove ourselves from life for a night and enjoy each others company and a bottle of champagne (!). Crossing things off my Spring Bucket List.

Inn at the ForksMoksha membership. I have been LOVING my Moksha membership (hot yoga). I know that I really enjoy going to classes so finally decided to take the plunge on the membership. It makes me feel powerful and amazing.

Wine and Cheese Party. While the party was intended to be delicious and fun, it was also a going away party for a co-worker, which was sad. It’s a really good thing there was a lot of wine and cheese around.

Patio Weather. Although that has come and gone now I sure enjoyed it while it was here.

5 (ish) THINGS I ATE

Apple tart. You guys. I made an apple tart, and it was amazing.

Apple TartBread from Tall Grass Prairie + KRAFT peanut butter & honey. treat yo self to the extra sweet stuff sometime.

Toast and PBSausage board at SMITH – 4 types of sausage, spicy lentil and pita, HB eggs, tomatoes, olives, and pickles.

Sausage Board at SMITHBBQ’d Brats from a local butcher + grilled eggplant. Holy dinah, that is all. First BBQ of the year!

First BBQWeekly Reads

I’m linking up with Heather and Clare today for some Friday shenanigans!

Let’s chat!Have you ever taken a vacation in your own city? What’s your favourite cookbook?

Ladies Night: Wine and Cheese Tasting

A few coworkers and I got together over the past week to indulge in a wine and cheese tasting. The two most organized of the group (of course that includes me) planned the menu and wine pairings to a T. We used the Dairy Farmers of Canada cheese book as a guideline and today I’m going to show off the amazing-ness that was our cheese and wine party.

Wine and Cheese Menu

All cheese flights were served with a variety of sides including: baguette, fresh berries, dates, dried apricots, dried cherries, olives, preserves, cucumber, apple, and walnuts

Flight one:

Cheeses: Baked brie drizzled with honey + Havarti + Colby

Wine: Pinot Noir Rose (Cono Sur Bicicleta)

Wine and Cheese Flight 1 Flight two:

Cheeses: Boursin Cranberry & Pepper + Gorgonzola + Aged Cheddar

Wine: Sauvignon Blanc (Tabali)

Wine and Cheese Flight 2Flight three:

Cheeses: Camembert + Fresh Herb Havarti + Jalapeno Smoked Gouda

Wine: Malbec (Bousquet) + Syrah (Le Versant)

Wine and Cheese Flight 3

My favourite cheeses had to have been the aged cheddar and the brie, and my favourite wine the Malbec.

Let’s ChatHave you ever done a wine/cheese tasting? What’s your favourite kind of cheese?