Sunday, June 30, 2013


I am a BIG believer in Sunday-Funday's, in fact Sunday-Funday's are my favourite!

               What is Sunday Funday you ask? Good Question. I first came across this in Denver Colorado while there for a friends wedding. Sunday-Funday involved brunch, bottomless mimosas, build your own Cesar bars, hanging out with friends, being outside and doing fun things.

Picture from first Sunday-Funday.
Chelsey and I at a rooftop bar in Colorado

I decided that this fantastic invention (that turns an otherwise dreaded day-before-the-week-begins) should be a regular in my routine. It has since become a tradition between Jeff and I, although it has yet to include mimosas or ceasars...hmm I should get on that!

Summer time allows for the best Sunday-Funday adventures. Some of our favourites to date include:
Hiking over canyon


Walking at the Marina

Lake Hockey

Snowboarding in Lutsen

Lutsen Slides

Sooo much fun!

Like Mario Cart!

Today's Sunday-Funday will hopefully involve paddle-boarding, tennis, rollerblading and margaritas!

What are your Sunday traditions?

Friday, June 28, 2013

Heather's Wedding

Congratulations Mr. & Mrs. Daigle!!

Sorry for my delay in following up. We had a blast last week!  I am still catching up. Heather was the most stunning bride! Thursday night all the bridesmaids slept over at Heather's parents house, we had a nice dinner, played some Heads Up (hilarious iphone game designed by Ellen...d/l it NOW!) and tried to get a good night sleep. The mother of the bride, bride, maid of honour and I didn't sleep a wink, but we were all so excited Friday morning it didn't matter.

You know what's fun? Being a girl and your job for the wedding day is to get your hair and makeup done by professionals while drinking mimosas..ahhhh it was fabulous!
Heather getting her hair did

Nikey's turn for beautification!

 The weather was overcast and a bit rainy, but it totally held out! I cannot wait to see her professional pictures, taken in the country on gorgeous green rolling hills. In the mean time here are some of the pictures me (and Jeff) snapped during the day.

Beautiful bride on our way to the church

Saying I DO!

The Newlyweds Celebrating on the bus!

Amazing group of girls!! SO much fun!

My fiance and Bff Cupcake Fight
 The Newlyweds are currently in Jamaica, likely drinking pina coladas! I hope they are having an amazing time!  Experiencing in all the fun for Heather's day made me even more excited for our wedding! Time is ticking!

Happy Friday! TGIF!

Friday, June 21, 2013

Wedding Season begins - Heather's Big Day!

Today my beautiful friend Heather is getting married. I am so excited for her and honoured to be a part of her special day.

From her bachelorette party!

Wishing you an amazing day Heather, soak up every moment. You are going to be the most beautiful bride! I will share pictures soon. In the mean time, let's take a look back at some fun memories...

Girls Trip to Vegas

Golf Tourney

That time we were in a flash mob....
Themed Parties

Curling bon spiels


Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Green Thumb? - My Garden Project

I am really going to have to do an entire post on my bucket list soon, but in the mean time here is another item I can cross off. I have always wanted to grow a garden. And by this I mean I would like to see something, anything - a single zucchini, a baby pumpkin, a tomato, ANYTHING grow!

Enter Grandma Max. For those of you who don't know her, let me start by saying she is the coolest Grandma ever, (I know that's a big call..but its true). She has more energy then I ever will, she works out harder then I do, shes the ultimate clean eater (beside her obsession with chocolate) and she is one of the most entertaining people you will ever meet - I guarantee it!
Grandma Max

A couple weeks ago she called my parents asking if they had a spot in their yard she could plant some squash (98% of her dinner meals are steamed vegetables, so having a stash of squash is her dream). My parents have no room for a garden, but Jeff has a giant back yard, begging for a garden. I figured this would be the perfect way to get mine started. This is what we were working with:
Cookie Break

After - all planted and ready!
Admiring our work

We planted pumpkins, zucchini, 2 types of squash and for fun we put cantaloupe seeds into Jeff's front perennial garden ("You are growing what in my front yard?!"...he was not impressed. We thought it was hilarious).

Pumpkins are supposed to be grown 1.5-3meters apart....we started out this way then just added more seeds all around. Like I said, we just wanted to get a start, next year we can work on perfecting our art! Starting is the hardest part, so now that's done and we will see what grows.

You better believe I will add pictures as it grows. The pumpkin seed package warned pumkins can grow to 100lbs...I sure hope so!

                                                                 54. Grow a Garden (boom!)

Blog Help - Advice from the best!

I was reading My Keep Calm and Carry On this morning and came across this awesome contest; Katie and her amazing blogger friends are offering 5 lucky readers the chance to win access to their blogging knowledge. I am entering the here's hoping Sunshine & Sugar has a chance to get some much need help and advice!!

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Move Over Martha, Ally's Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake!

Yesterday was my fiance's birthday (boy am I looking forward to not using that word in 6 months). Happy Birthday to my favourite guy!! Hope your birthday is filled with sunshine and margaritas on the rocks! CHEERS!

Jeff's favourite dessert is a chocolate peanut butter cheesecake made by a local restaurant, so I thought I would try and make it for his birthday dinner tonight. After researching recipes and reading countless reviews, I give you my version of Martha Stewart's Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake.

Note: I have never made cheesecake before; I am lactose intolerant so I selfishly tend to only bake things I can devour, but for his birthday I decided to make an exception....


  • Vegetable-oil cooking spray
  • 1 cup finely ground chocolate wafer cookies (I used Oreo Cookie Crumbs)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate (55 to 61 percent cacao), finely chopped
  • 3.5 packages of cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • Pinch of coarse salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate (61 percent to 70 percent cacao), finely chopped (3/4 cup)
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1 tablespoon whole milk (I used 2 creamers I took from work)
  • 2 teaspoons light corn syrup


  1. Crust: Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Wrap bottom and outside of a 9-inch spring form pan with a double layer of foil. Coat bottom of pan with cooking spray, and line with parchment. Spray parchment.
    Tin Foil Wrapping
  2. Stir together cookie crumbs, butter, and sugar in a medium bowl. Press mixture firmly into bottom of pan, and bake until firm, about 10 minutes. Let cool completely in pan on wire rack.
    Cooked Crust
  3. Filling: Melt chocolate in a bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water. Let cool. Beat cream cheese with a mixer on medium speed until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Reduce speed to low, and beat in sugar in a slow, steady stream until combined. Beat in salt and vanilla until thoroughly combined and completely smooth. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until combined after each addition (do not over mix).

    I am a messy baker...
  4. Divide cream-cheese filling in half. Stir peanut butter into 1 half; stir melted chocolate into other half. Ladle 1 cup peanut butter filling into center of crust, and tap pan gently on counter to settle. Ladle 1 cup chocolate filling directly on top of peanut butter filling. Repeat, then switching to half-cup amounts, continue to ladle fillings into crust, alternating them until all of each filling is used.

    Ready for the oven
  5. Bring a kettle of water to a boil. Set cake pan in a large roasting pan, and transfer to oven. Carefully pour boiling water into roasting pan to reach halfway up sides of cake pan. Bake until cake is set but still slightly wobbly in center, about 1 hour 20 minutes.(In convection oven mine only took 1 hour and 5 mins)

  6.  Let cool completely in pan on wire rack. Refrigerate cake in pan until cold, at least 6 hours, up to overnight. Before unmolding, run a knife around edge of cake.
  7. To make Glaze, melt chocolate and butter in a bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water, stirring until smooth. Remove from heat, and stir in milk and corn syrup. Use immediately.Pour glaze over top of cake, smoothing with an offset spatula and letting it drip down the sides.

I added some fresh flowers for decoration and candles for the bday boy! He was pretty excited :)
The cake was a HUGE hit, absolutely delicious. I give this recipe 5 Stars***** I will be making this again! Next time I would double the crust and make it thicker, as well as add 1/4 cup more peanut butter.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Wedding Plans - Wedding Wednesday Update

Our wedding seems very far away (December 28th) and yet the year is flying by. I am in the middle of the planning stages, sort of in a lull or maybe in the calm before the storm. All of the big things are booked, or planned, its a million small details and maybe some bigger ones left. I will share my journey and to do list, if only in hopes to inspire myself.

Its funny, I LOVE planning, planning and organizing are my favourite things to do, however when it comes to our wedding plans I am just so excited for the day that all the small details seem overwhelming/unimportant. I think my subconsious is however concerned worried about each and every detail and that would be the cause of what I like to call "weddingmares". Can anyone relate to these? They are always some version of our big day but nothing is done, we forgot to ask people to do speeches, had no M/C....I wake up in a panic haha This is natural right?!

Our theme is winter I hope we get a very white Christmas this year or at least a very white December 28th!

Here is where we are at so far...

The moment that started it all - Right after Jeff proposed

Set a date Dec. 28 2013

Book Church
Book reception venue

Book photographer

Book videographer

Book music (Jeff's list)

Ask wedding party
                                      Create wedding website *almost done will show you soon*

Register *Just about finished!

Book florist

Buy wedding dress

Book ceremony musician
                                               Engagement Photos (happening this weekend!)

                                                         Engagement Party Invitations

Select & Order bridesmaid dresses

Select and order groom & groomsmen attire

Select and order flower girl dresses

Purchase veil and accessories for dress

Book cake baker

Cake Tasting - can't wait!

Buy cake knife & server

Order save the dates   

Finalize guest list

Send save the dates - July

Book officiant

Pre-marital counseling

Order guest book

Hotel room blocks

Hire calligrapher

Wedding  announcement

Find wedding shoes - cant wait to wear em!!

Find wedding jewelry - need earrings!

Find garter

Book makeup artist & hair stylist

Menu tasting

Hair & make up trial

1st dress fitting

2nd dress fitting

Create/Order  ceremony programs

Order invitations (found them!)

Mail invitations

Rehearsal dinner?

Book Bridesmaids Lunch

Wedding Favours - buy and make

Book transportation (done, Jeff's List)

Buy bridal party gifts

Order gifts for parents

Gifts for flower girls and ring bearer

Bachelorette party

Bridal shower

Purchase wedding bands

Put together picture list for photographer

Get marriage license

Book honeymoon

Music selections to band and ceremony artist

Order thank you notes

Wedding announcement

Seating Chart

Evening timeline for M/C

Write thank you speech

Walk down the aisle & say I do!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Eat Clean 2013

Eat Clean 2013...that is what I declared for my NYE resolution this year. While I would like to think I have dived into that, I have at least stuck one leg in. (The other is up to my waist in peanut butter and chocolate...can't blame a girl!) I have started experimenting with lots of new recipes and try to make sure I at least try to eat clean as much as possible. I am always fascinated with what people eat and new things to try so here is what I found works for me.

I have fallen in love with smoothies as my clean eating breakfast. Turns out, as a reformed extreme picky eater, I find I can swallow just about anything if it is cold and mixed with berries. So here is my current favourite smoothie recipe:
Berry Spinach Smoothie

2 cups frozen blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, strawberries
1 banana
1/2 cup juice (I have tried almond milk - it wasn't delicious and I have tried just water and it was gagable, but a mix of watered down juice is the best). Try to use pure juice ie: orange or pomegranate.
2 Tbsp ground flax
2 Tbsp chia (ground or seeds)
1 scoop of vanilla protein powder
2 cups of baby spinach or as much as you can squeeze in (you cannot taste it trust me!)

Combine in blender and blend! This recipe makes enough for 2 people.
I don't chug mine down so I put it in my Starbucks doubled walled coffee mug (which keeps it cold and drinkable for hours). Keep in mind the chia will turn into little chunks if it sits for long. I realize I may not be making this sound very appealing, but the chia really gives you an energy boost and it is tasty. The best part: As I sit at the office sucking down my concoction I feel the sweet satisfaction that comes from drinking a spinach salad for breakfast. Take that Eat Clean 2013....take that!

I drink this from about 8:00-9:30am and by 9:30-10:00am I am hungry again so enter my favourite tasty treat: No-bake energy bites. I found this recipe from the fabulous Katie over at My Keep Calm and Carry On and made some changes that I prefer, try it and let me know what you think!

1 cup old fashioned oats
3/4 to 1 cup coconut flakes
1/2 cup all natural peanut butter or almond butter
1/2 cup ground flax seed
1/2 cup chia, or holy crap mix
1/2 chopped walnuts
1/2 crasins
1/3 cup honey
1 tsp vanilla

Stir all ingredients together in a medium bowl until thoroughly mixed. Let chill in the refrigerator for half an hour. Once chilled, use an ice cream scoop to form into 1.5-2 inch balls and put into cupcake papers (this makes eating and traveling with them easier).
Store in an airtight container and keep refrigerated for up to 1 week.
Makes about 10-15 balls

Happy Clean Eating!!

Monday, June 3, 2013

My First Post

Hello Blogging World...I have finally taken the plunge to creating my own page. I have been thinking about it for a while; its been on my bucket list, my 2013 to do list and finally my 27th birthday must ! So 4 days following my birthday, here we go!

I have been an avid blog reader for about 2.5 years, thanks to my sister who got me hooked on Pink Lou Lou. Since then I have branched out discovering about 6 blogs I read constantly. I love tuning in to see their stories, their DIY projects and to follow momentous occasions like weddings and pregnancies.  I love the honesty, the sharing, swapping of ideas and good laughs. Also, I think I can safely say I am a more stylish person (not that this was hard) because of the blogs I read. Shout out to all the fabulous bloggers who inspired me to start my own, I hope some of you find this entertaining or useful!

I suppose I should start by telling you all a little bit about myself. My name is Alexandra and I am a 27 year old Marketing Specialist living in Ontario, Canada! I am engaged to an amazing guy named Jeff and we are working on plans for our December 28th 2013 winter wedding!  I an avid baker, an outdoors lover, fashionista wannabe, a snowboarder, a chick-flick lover, wine enthusiast, a Rotarian, a sister, a daughter and wife to be!

The name for this blog came from a sleepless night a week ago. Have you seen this commercial? This was me...being philosophical about nothing as I tossed and turned. I had wanted my blog name to involve "Sunshine" as I love everything it stands for; a sunny day, positivity and happiness. Dare I admit my first email address was sunshine_*insert childhood nickname* I also wanted it to have something to do with baking (I am somewhat addicted to baking, but that's another story) so half asleep I believed I had the greatest blog name of all time....Sunshine & Butter.

Want a good laugh? Re-tell yourself things that seemed like such a good idea when you were trying to fall asleep! I told my (older, creative) sister who is a teacher and she came up with Sunshine & Sugar (much better alliteration) and the reason why I keep her on staff ;)

So here it is my Sunshine & Sugar; My scrapbook and recipe box, my stories and memories. I promise to post regularly, to double check my awful spelling and to do what I can to make this entertaining! we go!