Saturday Sun 12.09.2023

Created by Laura Wright
A head-on shot shows a holiday evergreen planter against a brick background outside. The planter features green and little pod/shell/mushroom ornaments.

Hello and welcome to the weekend. I’m still going with the vertigo unfortunately, but have been experiencing some improvement! It’s kind of a float-y/wavy feeling that is totally bearable in most situations. Just no heavy machinery operating for me! I also find that lots of screen scrolling is not exactly the best thing.

We’re having a pretty low key weekend over here–a game night with friends, some nice dinners at home, a bit of holiday baking (puffed rice treats, sugar cookie bars, chocolate chip cookies, and thumbprints), and lots of rain in the forecast. What’s a holiday treat that you find yourself making every year?

I hope that you’re keeping well and looking after yourself these days. Catch you back here soon ♥️

5 Things I’m Reading:

  1. The Art of Hibernation
  2. The Quiet Thrill of Keeping a Secret
  3. How A House Fire Taught Me To Live With Less
  4. Rizz, the word of the year, explained
  5. Why We Need Community Now More than Ever

5 Things I’m Enjoying:

  1. This episode of Are You Ready (the podcast from Joanne Molinaro aka The Korean Vegan): Is Veganism Doomed?
  2. Morels is such a fun 2-player board game! All centered on the acts of “foraging” and “cooking” mushrooms.
  3. Drizzling so many things with this Spicy Maple. I love that it also has a bit of tang to make it extra complex. Everything from Stoke is a winner. For my local Niagara people, I highly recommend checking them out at De La Terre!
  4. Nothing to link, just loving fresh ginger tea and find that it’s extra calming and centring with the vertigo stuff. I just chop up a root and boil it in a pot of water with some lemon slices for about 10 minutes. Strain and enjoy!
  5. How I used to think animals lived when I was little

5 Questions:

  1. Your go-to vegan meal when hosting skeptical non-vegans?
    For something more involved, I love the Mushroom & Beet Bolognese. It has such a great depth of flavour, loads of umami, and it’s also super comforting. You can also make the sauce ahead, which is great for entertaining. I like to use the pre-cooked beets by Love Beets for this because it makes the prep easier, but also the colour is a bit more muted. For something simple and weeknight-appropriate, these Spicy Maple Tofu Bowls are a hit.
  2. Suggestions for easy holiday apps that aren’t all pastry and cheese?
    I have lots! A dip is pretty much always a winner in my books. My favourites are: Vegan Caramelized Onion Dip, Spicy Vegan Artichoke Dip with Kale, Roasted Carrot & Harissa Chickpea Dip, and for non-dip options: Avocado Tartare, Papaya Salad Rolls and Vegan Stuffed Mushrooms with Pesto Cream.
  3. Any tips for year end burnout? Just feeling so, so drained.
    One thing that has really helped me over the years is saying no more often, but more importantly practicing your “no.” Maybe you don’t have the capacity for another gathering, gift exchange, extra responsibility on your plate etc. Some of these things are non-negotiable in life, but over time I’ve realized that plenty of them are! When the holidays start creeping up, I practice my “no.” That can take the form of a canned email response in my notes app that just needs a little personalizing depending on the situation or maybe it looks like practicing in the mirror if it’s going to be face-to-face. At my core, I do believe that you don’t always have to provide justification for saying no to things. But in some instances, it just feels right and goes a long way in preserving/nurturing a relationship. All the meditation, exercise, and healthy eating in the world will not matter if your plate is constantly overloaded.
  4. I just bought the espresso machine that you have! Any tips/resources for beginner baristas?
    I learned everything that I know about using this machine from Reddit! I worked as a barista ages ago, but that experience was not 100% applicable with the Breville since it’s designed for home use. The r/espresso and r/coffee subreddits are goldmines of information and firsthand experience. Some quick tidbits from my own experience: fresh beans from local spots are always better (I keep the grind size at 7-8), the quality of your water makes a difference, and you have to tamp a lot harder than you think (15 lbs of pressure).
  5. What is your favourite easy comfort food?
    Comfort food for me is about the taste as much as the process of preparation. Usually I want it to be straightforward, satiating, and relatively quick. My go-to is a simple pasta with spicy marinara (store bought!), sautéed bits of veggie sausage, and chopped broccoli rabe. The bitter, spicy, and tomato-y trifecta always really hits for me, and it’s ready in 20-ish minutes.
09/12/2023 (Last Updated 07/03/2024)


  • Laura

    Hi, I wanted to let you more that I got the same juicer you have (with the discount) and I’ve done a couple juices so far. Thanks for the recommendation! I made one juice that had carrots, beets, celery and chard and the texture came out kind of fibrous. Is that common with this juicer in your experience?

  • Sophie

    ooohhh which Breville espresso maker do you own? I’ve been contemplating a Breville purchase but haven’t worked up the nerve to invest in one yet.

    • Laura Wright

      Hi Sophie!
      I’ve had the Breville Barista Express since 2018 and I still love it. The price has gone up considerably since the time that I purchased it though. I would be looking at other options if I was getting an espresso machine now. It’s important to know that this machine is manual in all aspects, so making coffee is a bit of a “ritual” that takes longer than machines with automatic features.

      • Sophie

        Thanks so much for this info, very helpful to know!!

  • Sherryn

    Laura, you give so much warmth & goodness to my little corner of life — the Art of Hibernation piece was such a salve. It’s been a really really rough couple of years and I have felt bad about staying in bed so long in the mornings. Now I know these are comfort months & I’m going to embrace them (and your spicy maple tofu bowls ). Happy Holidays to you & yours. ~S.

  • Jeannie

    Hi Laura, Thank you for another great Saturday Sun – I always look forward to reading them. I’ve had vertigo a few times due to BPPV. The last time, for quite some time after the BPPV had resolved, I continued to experience dizziness, unsteadiness and feeling like I was on a rocking boat. Apparently this is due to the brain first of all adapting to the actual BPPV, then taking time to re-adapt once the BPPV has resolved. My symptoms lingered for quite a while, so my doctor recommended vestibular rehabilitation therapy – a type of physio to help with vertigo and balance issues. It requires a PT who has special training in this type of therapy. I went for the physio and found it helped immediately and all symptoms resolved fairly quickly. I hope you feel better soon!

    • Laura Wright

      Hi Jeannie!
      Thanks for sharing your experience with me. I’m experiencing a lot of the same things you describe and am starting vestibular rehabilitation therapy next week :)

  • Emily

    I love these newsletters! They are great for the people that are taking a break from Instagram but want to stay connected to their favorite food bloggers

  • Jan

    Have you been doing the Epley maneuver? Is it BPPV?

    • Laura Wright

      I have been! Going to a Vestibular rehabilitation therapist next week though :)

  • Sarah Fabian

    Hibernation, denning, and hygge go hand in hand, and I love it in this season of life! P.s. I hope vertigo isn’t a permanent thing and that you heal quickly.