Archive for Life

April 21st, 2015

Cabane à Sucre


When I came to Canada, I was exposed to authentic maple syrup and it’s in a league of its own – delicious! There’s no time for the cheap pretend maple syrup business that I’ve only known my entire life. I’ll just say this… I’ll never buy Aunt Jemima again.


This last weekend I got to experience maple syrup in all its glory, we went to a Sugar Shack (AKA Cabane à Sucre)! The Sugar Shacks are where the sap of the maple tree is boiled and made into maple syrup. Most Sugar Shacks in Quebec are only open during sugaring off season – which is normally the spring.


As promised in yesterday’s post, I want to share some photos from my first Sugar Shack experience!



This is where the magic happens. A friendly gentleman (who knew English fairly well!)

poured the syrup and I wrapped it around my stick and enjoyed every morsel.


The Sugar Shack experience is not just about the syrup, it’s also about a grand spread of food to share family style around the table. There was ham, baked beans, cole slaw, beets, pickles, 2 kinds of potatoes, sausages, dinner rolls, pea soup, 4 types of dessert… and oreilles de crisse.


I didn’t really understand what oreilles de crisse could be as Julie described them to me before we went. Translated they could mean “Christ’s ears” and I was like, what the hell? But really, they are just deep-fried smoked pork jowls. Crunchy salted fat.



The food was delicious and abundant! My favorite part was the maple grandfathers, 

a dumpling covered in the most savory maple sauce!


We ate so much food and still brought a full take home box with us when we left. This was a fabulous experience, but my blood sugar level and waist line could not handle it on a frequent basis.


I hope you have enjoyed hearing about my first experience with the Sugar Shack. I’m off to go help Julie put some stationery packs together for the SSS!

Posted under Life | 2 Comments
December 18th, 2014

I’ll write 36 letters – do you want one?


36 project 1

36 project 2


To summarize:

– I’ll write a letter to 36 different and new people over the next 12 months.

– This is an ongoing project, so you have until December 2015 to participate.

– To receive a letter, you can post a comment below, tell me about yourself (or the person you want me to write to), and ask me a few questions to get me going.

– Another way to receive a letter is to write me a letter!


Please share this with your friends… I’d love to meet and write to new people! Thank you. See you in the mail…

Posted under Life, Snail mail | 27 Comments


My name is Julie and I'm 35.
I live in Québec (close to Montréal) and I speak French.

I write letters, I love stationery and I have a handwriting fetish. I often eat sushi, still feel like I'm 16 and only wear skirts & dresses (with colorful tights when it's cold).

I'm happier with a mind full of ideas, a mailbox full of letters from my penpals, a shop full of stationery, a house full of cats and a day full of hugs.

Read my Top 10 Quirks here.

This is me with my wife,
Denise. We met through the
League of Extraordinary
Penpals and are living
happily ever after amongst
piles of cats and stationery.

Denise blogs here
from time to time and is
the one in charge of the
social media: Facebook,
Twitter and Pinterest.

She's 39 years old,
from the United States,
and in love with me, washi
tape & imperial rolls.

Send your penpal ad & top 10 quirks to:

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penpal of the week