Monday, March 31, 2008

Banana Creme Delight

I needed a potluck contribution for Kelsey's birthday brunch. What to bring? Same old standbys? Nope. I tried something new. I found pictures on Jess' flickr stream and decided to approximate what I saw. It was easy, simple and incredibly delish. All I had to do was make up a {lame} name.

Banana Creme Delight
  • layer bottom of 9x13 baking dish with graham crackers
  • cover with sliced bananas
  • cover with banana pudding {I used the stovetop Jello Banana cream pudding and pie filling}
  • cover with a layer of real whipped cream
  • garnish with crushed graham crackers and extra banana slices
It tastes better if you make it the day before, that way everything has a chance to set.

Weekend Post Mortem

Sorry for the late post today, the boss is out of town, and that can go one of two ways. Today, it went the bad way... Luckily, my weekend did not.

Friday night was just for us. We hopped into our jammies, ate some pizza, and watched movies. We watched Enchanted, which we actually BOTH liked, and Amelie, inspired by Ali's week of posts {now two - hurrah!}

LB had to work both days this weekend, which was a bit of a downer, but I made the most of it. Did some cleaning around the house, managed to get to the grocery store with my rhubarb "glam cart" {that's what we call it} which was probably one of my favourite gifts of all time {no pics unfortunately...} The most exciting thing about all of that was that it meant that the sidewalks were clear enough to pull a cart full of groceries with me! Then I walked over to Little Italy and met LB for a snack and cappuccino at my favourite cappuccino spot in town, the Pasticceria Gelateria. This was followed by girly time and dinner with Laurin at our favourite burger joint, the Works. We had milkshakes and burgers and dished. After dinner, we headed to Bridgehead, for after dinner coffees and to sit in the lovely candlelit environment created by Earth Hour.

Sunday, I took Siobhan out for her birthday brunch at {where else?} Stoneface Dolly's. We had a lovely time and a great walk in the sunshine. Sunday afternoon was Kelsey's birthday brunch, where everyone outdid themselves with potluck contributions. Then off to my parents' for prime rib dinner. It was incroyable!

Friday, March 28, 2008

Earth Hour

Tomorrow night, March 29, is Earth Hour. Between 8 and 9 pm, your time, turn off all power sources in your home. Make it fun - plan a candlelight dinner, go for a walk, have freinds over and play board games by candlelight while listening to the hockey game on a hand crank radio - whatever floats your boat and reminds you to conserve energy. For the record, I'm not unplugging my fridge. It would take more power to start it up again.


At the turstfund party, LB and I both snapped up footwear by Tretorn. Their shoes are incredibly comfy, and stylish! I got a pair of their skerry puddle jumpers, lined with fleece, so that I can wear them through this awkward spring transition we are having. And what's cheerier than a bright pair of pumpkin boots struttin' down the street?

LB however, was far more sensible and picked out a pair of sneakers to replace the Adidas he wore at our wedding three years ago. His are made from recycled sails, so they wipe clean and offer some water resistance. I cut off his head - I'm terrible!


On Wednesday night, LB and I had the opportunity to attend a fabulous party thrown by the equally fabulous Stuart and Stephanie over at Trustfund. The party was to celebrate the boutique's three great Swedish brands - nudie jeans, Tiger of Sweden, and Tretorn. To get in, you had to say your favourite things about Sweden. I listed more than one: - the clothes, the language, the sensible approach to design and living, the welfare state, etc... Here's the lovely Tretorn display: {I'm so jealous of that hutch!}

The party itself was catered by the Swedish embassy, with the Swedish Ambassador to Canada hanging out in the store all evening, shaking hands, promoting Swedish clothes. The meatballs were incredible, as were the traditional gingerbread-y cookies, and the lingonberry juice cocktails were delish, garnished with, you guessed it, Swedish Berries! Nothing was left unattended, the mood was fabulous, the music great, even LB had a good time {and that's saying a lot, as fashion parties are not his scene}...

This was my attempt to convince LB that we needed to buy a jack spade colour dipped tote. Clearly, he's skeptical...

Thursday, March 27, 2008


This might be one of the funniest clips I've seen in a long time. With lines like "Estrogen Esther" and "knish in the oven", how could you not love the Jewish version of everyone's indie darling Juno?

She & Him

I am in lalalalove with the she & him record. Zooey Deschanel and M Ward, together, makes for a combination of dreamy proportions. The entire album is beautiful, haunting but cheery, basically a low-key feel good record that you can't help but smile as you listen to. The version of You Really Got a Hold on Me is so good that you can't help but sing along...and then, right at the very end, she comes in with this beautiful version of Swing Low, Sweet Chariot that just about takes your breath away. It's beautiful, sweet, sad, all of the above...

{photo via}


The lovely Daphna found me this bright and cheery apron on esty. While I adore aprons and was half tempted to click on the buy button, it also really made me just want to get out my sewing machine. I could make this pretty quickly and with my own lovely fabrics...

from retromama's etsy shop.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Favourite things: LL Bean Boat and Tote

I've decided to start running a weekly feature on some of my most favourite things in the world. To kick things off, I'm starting with the iconic LL Bean Boat and Tote bag. When I got married, I gave each of my bridesmaids one with their initials monogrammed, and filled it with all kinds of goodies. It is the perfect bag. I use it for the beach, the market, travel, the office, and it always looks appropriate and stylish. And the price- you can't go wrong! I recommend sticking to one of the more classic contrast colours though, like the black, navy or red. It has more staying power that way. And it's never out of style...

Update: In response to Belette's question, I recommend the large size with short (regular) handles. I find it the perfect size, it even fits legal folders for work! I also have mine done with the plain monogram, no serif, no diamond pattern, no italics...

More giraffe prints

You might remember that I posted about a pair of giraffe shoes that has been making me want to break out the visa, well now kate has gone and made an even more beautiful pair. The balance of black and white and the pink lining made me gasp.

Always a good message

From our favourite people. Who else would send a nice public service message while selling bags than kate spade?

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Bedroom envy

I'm in love with this room, belonging to Erin of design for mankind. I love the blue and black together with lots of white to keep it bright, the romance of it all, and am very jealous of the fab plates. I also really like those little bedside tables. And I'm a sucker for any pic with a puppy in it...

{picture via design sponge}

Weekend Post-Mortem

This was a craaazy 5-day weekend for me, that was so much fun but so exhausting! I love Easter weekend though, it's always fun to have a long weekend with tons of treats!

Thursday, I spent the day running errands and cooking, in preparation for LB's little birthday party. I say little because I couldn't handle the thought of a big blowout in the new house, just not there yet, so we had about 16 people over for dinner, snacks, drinks, and cupcakes. Of course, I forgot to take pics because I was doing 6 million other things - but it was a night centred around LB's favourites: we had BBQ hot dogs and sausages, a make your own panini bar, lots of apps, and peanut butter cookie cupcakes.

Friday, we got up and I made LB Brazilian French Toast for his birthday brunch {when you have a husband who makes people brunch for a living, it's hard to top what LB can already make!} Luckily, the toast was beyond delicious, and we ate ourselves silly. A quick lunch with Daphna, then LB and I curled up and watched Southland Tales. Now, I love Donnie Darko oh so very much, but this one's a little too messed up for words. The most random cast ever, a frustrating ending, but we both still enjoyed it. We then headed to mom's for Good Friday baked beans and coleslaw {no meat - that's how Grandma always did it!} and had some family time, after which we all hunkered down and watched No Country for Old Men. I've read the book and watched the movie, and LOVE both.

Saturday, I got my hair cut. Much shorter than I wanted, but I like it. I think. Then we made all of our appetizers for the big dinner, and headed back to mom and dad's. Since we were 17 people, I made a veggie tray, a shrimp tray, pita and tzatziki, and this incredible cheese ball from Martha. I made half for Thurs and half for Saturday, and it was all gone. We ate turkey and BBQ lamb, and celebrated Mom and LB and Shiv's birthdays. LB and I even slept over at mom and dad's, just for fun.

While we slept, the Easter bunny came, so Sunday morning was filled with candy, but we managed to stop it while I made lemon ricotta pancakes for everyone. I added blueberries to the batch and highly recommend it. We watched Margot at the Wedding, a good but not great film by Noah Baumbach. If you loved the Squid and the Whale as much as I did, you might be a bit disappointed, but still in love. Jennifer Jason Leigh is incredible. Then I went home and napped a bit, and we all went cross country skiing for the evening.

Monday was the day to be tired. I puttered, cleaned, napped, and just generally recovered from the weekend. LB treated me to my favourite fajitas at Lone Star for dinner, and then we finished our discs from Season 2 of Big Love - I'm so addicted to that show it's not even funny!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Favourite Things: Skiing and Fondue

Our family decided to have our gigantic 18 person dinner on Saturday night of the long weekend, so that my cousin could travel home on the Sunday. That left Sunday evening free for one of our favourite things in the world: cross-country skiing up to a chalet in the Gatineaus, and then making a delectable dinner of pates, cheese fondue, and delicious desserts. You've earned it after all that time! And although you can't really tell, I'm sporting my new REALLY short do in this photo! We even got LB out on a pair of snowshoes, though he's finally decided that he's willing to give skiing a try! YAY!

Tara Cares!

Who doesn't love getting a package in the mail? Especially an unexpected one... My dear friend/cousin Tara sent me an incredibly decadent care package to help me out in my new job. All of these products are specially designed to enable me to provide advice in the most senior way possible... All from SOMA chocolate in Toronto, we have chocolate shortbread, orange rind dipped in chocolate, and Mayan hot chocolate - WOWZAS! Everything was incredible, and I truly feel better able to do my job as a result... Thanks Tara, you made my day!!!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Happy Birthday LB!!!!

I couldn't imagine a better partner in life. A best friend, a husband, a true partner. And we laugh every day. Even when there's nothing funny. Especially when there's nothing funny. And he cooks. And cleans. Much love.

ps- dear ottawa senators: could you please win for LB's birthday? That would be just super.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Looooong Weekend!

I'm taking tomorrow off. It's LB's birthday, and I'm spending the day prepping for a little soirée that I am throwing for him. Baking cakes, cleaning house, making Easter baskets, cooking food, and getting my haircut!!! I'm so excited to have a five-day weekend at my disposal; can't wait to hear all about yours!

{Image via}

Tuesday, March 18, 2008


Here's the newest member of our family, Cheyenne. Her parents, Kristie and Eric, are pleased as punch and love her to bits. How could they not - look at those eyes! those cheeks! that hair! Here she is in a lovely little outfit that LB and I picked out, with her new buddy Sophie.

In the Trenches

There are few things that I love in life as much as a well-made, well-cut trenchcoat. Price is not necessarily the issue, it just needs to be a good colour, and wear really well on the body. My current personal favourite is from Old Navy {I bought it last year}, although I do dream of one day owning a Burberry trench... However, I was in Schad last week checking out the new mackage spring line on Laurin's recommendation, and came across this fabulous "Lucy Lu" trench they've done for spring.

In this case, price is part of the issue, but Mackage makes such incredible coats {I have a winter one} that they are well worth the investment. And they're fabulous Canadian designers!

My Sweet Home

Well, I bought it. I came into some money selling my clothes at my favourite consignment store, making just enough to offset this lovely piece of art for our home. I don't often buy pieces like this, I usually inherit or find pictures and paintings and make use of them, so I'm particularly excited about this one. I can't wait until it arrives!!!

Home Sweet Home

Breath of Fresh Air

Based on the success of my first Mrs Meyers order, LB and I decided that it was going to be one of our little indulgences in life. We tend to scrimp on groceries and home stuff in general, so to have the house smelling so wonderfully fresh and clean, it is worth the extra money to us.

Yesterday, I worked quite late, waited for the bus forever, and ended up arriving home an hour later than anticipated. I was in a grumpy mood, somewhat alleviated by the fact that I could smell the roasted chicken LB made from the front step. Even more exciting was the fun little box of goodies that had arrived from Mrs Meyers - I ordered their rhubarb spring cleaning kit, and YUM! It smells incredible. LB likes it better than the geranium, but unfortunately, it's only a limited offer. I'm on the fence - they both have their merits, the rhubarb is a spicier, more subdued scent...

Monday, March 17, 2008

Weekend Post-Mortem: Double the Curd!

Phew! This was one of those weekends that you love to have, but are pooped when it's over! Friday night started out incredibly, I got to leave work before 5pm {4:45 thank you!} and headed over to my folks' place for my aunt's famous perogies and cabbage rolls! We had an incredible evening, made even more so by the fact that Kristie and Eric brought their new little daughter, Cheyenne. {And of course I forgot my camera! oops!}

Saturday was perfect. Breakfast of incredible scones from the Scone Witch {with non-homemade lemon curd, unfortunately!}, followed by a cleaning blitz, errands, nap time, and then a big engagement party for our friends Kieran and Erin! {And I once again forgot the camera! I'm terrible about snaps...}

Sunday, I was bribed, I fully admit it. LB woke me up at 8 and promised that if I got up, he would bring me to work and make me the special, lemon-ricotta pancakes...with lemon curd! What do you THINK I did? I dressed in a flash and ate those pancakes! And boy, were they ever incredible! Don't bother making them at home, if you're in Ottawa, just head down to Stoneface Dolly's! After a lovely {and much needed!} walk home, I then did all of my prep for the week, and headed out again. It was so sunny, I walked for an hour, soaking it in... Sandra had invited Anne and I over for the second in our series of movies and treats! Yesterday's flicks were Being John Malkovich and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. I hadn't seen either, and was so pleased with both. Liz Taylor and Paul Newman have to be two of the most beautiful human beings on the planet, circa 1958. We had some delightful snacks, some good gossip, and made it home in time for steak and curling on TV with my man. Such a Canadian evening- Alberta beef and the Brier...

Beautiful Paper

I just discovered Sesame Letterpress cards, while browsing over at Paper Papier. Their stuff is incredible, although a little pricy, and apparently Americans can get some of their stuff at Target!

They also have a lovely flickr stream, where I found the pics below.

I scream...

Who doesn't love ice cream? So refreshing and delicious, anytime of day, anytime of year. I'd love to get a set of these lovely maxwell-williams ice cream dishes for at home. I'd serve ice creams and parfaits for dessert at every party. Plus, I'd have an excuse to get those fabulous long ice cream spoons! I found them at Zone in Ottawa, but they should be available at whimsical home stores everywhere...

Maxwell & Williams Ice Cream Sundae Set Of 6 SUNDAE6SET

I also love these, which my cousin has.

Thinking Clearly...

I'm really looking forward to spring, because I will be able to bring out my Chanel naked bag! I bought this purse {although with white trim} in Paris last spring, and I know that it is not everyone's taste, but I absolutely adore it. It makes me so happy when I wear it, in a way that my classic black leather Chanel 2.55 doesn't quite cut it...

I pair the chanel bag with the kate spade hugo guinness poppy tote in pvc with the matching white leather trim, and it's a clear winner!

Kate Spade 'Hugo Poppy - Griffen' Tote

Friday, March 14, 2008

Feeling uninspired

For some reason, today, I am feeling uninspired. I haven't found anything pretty to share with you, I look at clothes and go "meh", so I won't force it and share cruddy pictures with you. I know when to call it a day.

I hope that you all have a lovely weekend!

I've got some good plans, that will hopefully inspire me to come back with an army of good ideas next week!

One thing's for sure, making this lemon curd will brighten my Saturday! {thanks Jordan!}


Good tunes...good times

Great news Ottawa! The New Pornographers are coming to town on April 8th! Tickets are at Ticketmaster and End Hits {and are waaaaay cheaper at End Hits!}
Hope that Neko's playing again this time - and hopefully I'll see you there!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

kate spade

I had a dream last night that I got to meet kate spade. Apparently, my brother, the industrial designer, decided to become a bag designer and was working for kate spade. I come home from work, and they are sitting in my basement {which looks waaaay nicer than mine!}, just hanging out and eating pizza. We start talking, I show her all of my cool stuff, she likes it, and then she just decided that she was bored and called Andy to come and pick her up. And that was it. I don't think that she chipped in for the pizza, either...

I'm officially in kate spade withdrawal. There's nowhere to get ks in Ottawa anymore, thus I am relegated to visiting the website several times a week and sighing. Here are some of my faves for spring...

the fisher island small devon would help with my dual cravings for stripes and animal prints!

the miranda sandals would be great for riding my bike to the market, or for jazzing up a plain sundress...

DIY - but finish it!!!

I'm terrible for starting projects and never finishing them - I started LB's skully sweater over a year and a half ago, I have all kinds of little home improvement projects that are unfinished, and it's starting to make me crazy. I always find something new that I'd rather do, and I'm off on yet another tangent...

Abbey has inspired me to tackle a few of these existing projects before I try anything else new- she's already tackled two stragglers this year! The goal this weekend is to find those projects, bring them together, and see what's needed to complete them, other than my time and focus.

{Image via}

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Stuck on Stripes!!!

I'm still focused on them - they are haunting me for spring. I bought three striped tops on the weekend, no less. All very plain and classic, but still striped! This scarf from BR would be absolutely perfect- a great way to update the pieces that you already have in your wardrobe...But 68 bucks? nah...wait till it goes on sale {which will likely be soon!} or hit the vintage stores...

The Urge to Clean

Almost as contagious as the urge to purge, is the urge to get your house in order come spring time. Although we just moved in December, there's a lot of little things that need my attention that I've been either too tired or too "I don't care" to do anything about. This guide from Martha might be a handy reference tool for those of you not sure where to start. I've incorporated it into my monster list. But if you break it up over a few weekends, it's really not so bad...

Spring-Cleaning Checklist


LB and I watched the documentary Radiant City last night, an excellent overview of urban sprawl. The city it focuses on is Calgary, but in reality it could be anywhere that suburbs have supplanted careful urban planning with mixed use buildings and mixed income residents. Lots of Canada's foremost thinkers on urban planning and the drivers behind the behaviours that motivate suburban dwellers. Definitely worth the 90 minutes and the 5 bucks.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Holy delicious Batman!

...And nutritious to boot! I don't know if I'm just late catching on, but the Larabars are soooo good! I bought a few varieties at Mountain Equipment Co-op a couple of weeks ago, and am so impressed. Other than the taste, it is the list of ingredients that blew me away: for a flavour called "cocoa coconut", the ingredients are as follows: dates, almonds, walnuts, unsweetened coconut, cocoa. I can pronounce all of those things, unlike some of my other favourite snacks {Diet pepsi and Special K vanilla almond cereal shall remain nameless here...}

Pennant Party!

I love this beautiful strand of Cath Kidston pennants by Paperfish. I think that they would make outdoor picnics, parties, and BBQs just a touch more whimsical. String them between two trees and you've got yourself a stew!


My favourite thing about Sundays, other than the fact that it's Sunday, is the CBC radio show Wiretap. Jonathan Goldstein is one of the funniest people I've ever come across, and his show is a hilarious mix of faux phone calls, short stories, personal encounters, and my personal favourites, retold Bible stories- like the REAL reason that David was able to slay Goliath... If you are a fan of satire, McSweeney's-type humour, with a little sadness and wistfulness thrown in, then Wiretap is for you.

Host Jonathan Goldstein

Weekend Post Mortem: SNOW

That's all it did, all weekend, it snowed. Luckily, I managed to find ways of doing stuff in spite of it. Friday night, I got changed and dolled up at work, and headed over to the National Arts Centre, where I was MC at the 11th Annual MAPA Society Banquet. It was good times - great company, great guests, but since I had been sick all week, a night of speaking made me lose my voice fo sho. I spent all weekend in a scratchy voice that made people cringe. It snowed all night on Friday and Daphna was such a good date - she drove me home in the snow!

Saturday started bright and early. Laurin and I took advantage of a two-hour snow break and had pancakes at Perkins, followed by an hour of bargain shopping at Joe Fresh Style. We managed to come away with some good deals, and not too many repeats between us. Then the family called, and we decided to have a snow day all together, so LB and I hopped into the car armed with movies and treats, and headed over. We watched Eastern Promises, which was incredible, and a lot of bad tv, which wasn't so good. My dad spoiled us all with BBQ flank steak for dinner.

Then the snow got even worse. We couldn't even get up our street on Saturday night, we had to dig some people out in order to get into our driveway. By the time we woke up on Sunday morning, it had snowed a total of 56cm {22"} and everything was blocked! I spent most of the day in the house, puttering, but did manage to trudge to the grocery store and LB and I had fun shovelling together. I've been craving nachos, so we rewarded our hard work with a warm plate of nachos and watched The Englishman's Boy, based on the Guy Vanderhage novel we loved.

Friday, March 07, 2008

I heart Campers

I have always had a fond spot for Campers, those zany Spanish shoes. In fact, the first pair of shoes I bought with my first grown-up paycheck were a pair of funky Camper mary janes. Last year, I bought a beautiful pair of Camper twins, shoes that are similar, but not quite identical. I'm hooked on them, and would like another pair for this summer, as they are the perfect marriage of style and comfort. If I had to pick only two, I'd pick the top pair and the bottom ones.

Top, Middle, Bottom


LB and I have already decided that my birthday present for this year is going to be a comfy and fabulous cruiser bike to facilitate my commute to work. There's something way more elegant about riding to work upright, in a lovely printed skirt, with your purse tucked into your wicker basket than arriving clad in spandex and grunting. Yes, I may be getting a lesser workout, but I'll look fabulous while doing so. I think that this vintage Schwinn could be the the ride of my dreams...

More Stripes

Clearly, I'm in love with the grey and yellow combo for spring. I bought a fab Tiger of Sweden dress/top that is a grey and yellow print, I posted about the grey and yellow sweater jacket from the GAP, and I keep fantasizing about this skirt from jcrew. Do I need it? Absolutely not. Do I lust after it? Absolutely.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Spring WILL come

And I need to be ready! Now that we have a yard, I can finally have a composter of my very own, instead of transporting buckets of smelly stuff to my parents' to use theirs... I've decided to get this one. I know that it's far more expensive than the ones that the city used to provide, but it's rolling, so you never have to stick your body in it and shovel - you just turn the handle and everything mixes for you!

Rolling Composter - Gardening

Cordon Bleu I can Afford!

Another piece for my Ottawa readers today - The Cordon Bleu academy, known for its incredible {and veeeerrrry expensive} Signatures Restaurant, is opening a Cordon Bleu bistro. This is where the students will work once they have spent nine months at the academy, and the price for a three-course prix-fixe will be $24.95. That's right - for a Cordon Bleu-prepared meal!

I'm very excited, it opens April 3, and only seats 30 people. I've got to reserve FAST! For more details, see this article from today's Citizen.

Le Cordon Bleu Signatures Restaurant

New Stores!

Just wanted to share some good news that Laurin flagged for me, and that I was able to confirm on line. Ottawa will be getting Sephora, Coach and Lucky Brand stores, between June and September 2008, all at the Rideau Centre. Like we were having trouble spending our hard-earned money as it is, right?

Wednesday, March 05, 2008


I just finished reading Peter Walsh's book It's All Too Much. I really really enjoyed it. Because unlike other books/mags/articles that deal with clutter and personal organization, this one talks about the reasons for which we accumulate so much clutter. It also goes into detail about how to move past it, well beyond just cleaning out a closet or organising your files, but more about how you want each room in your house to work - and what's preventing you from achieving this.

I took his clutter quiz and I won! I scored a 1, which means that I am clutter free, but that doesn't mean that I don't have to be vigilant. Don't worry Peter, I will be.

Sick Day

So my sick day yesterday happened to coincide with LB's one weekday off. While I felt bad for cramping his style, I didn't feel bad that he was there to take care of me. We watched Little Miss Sunshine and Election, heckled Oprah and Dr Phil, he picked up my favourite chinese take out for me {hot and sour soup will cure what ails you!} and just generally catered to my every whim.

Oh, did I mention that he feels really guilty because he is the one who got me sick? :)
ps- We got the new bed!!!! It's a cloud!!!!


I'm so so sorry for my absence yesterday - I didn't even feel well enough to write you that I'm sick. Today's another day, so I'm going to try again, but I may be a bit light on the posting today.

Monday, March 03, 2008

Spring brights

I've got bright spring jackets on the brain. This orange one from BR is waaay nicer in the store than online, and it reminds me of the Cherbourg coat from jcrew that was so popular around the holidays. I need to figure out how to incorporate a bit of orange into my wardrobe. I have a lovely orange Cole Haan purse from 5 years ago that I'd like to bring into my spring look.

I dream in stripes

I keep wondering about this cardigan from the Gap. I keep looking at it, but have yet to try it on. I think that it would be a lovely weekend piece, almost a jacket of sorts, that would look perfect with jeans and a white tshirt, but also great thrown on over a dress, almost as an after thought, but clearly well planned...