Dates for Derek and I have changed over the past 3 years or so. Maybe evolved is a better way to put it? At the beginning Derek would bring me to his baseball and hockey games (trying to impress me I assume) and then we would hang out in a parking lot drinking lukewarm cans of Coor’s Light with his team before heading to some dive pub for greasy food (I hope he didn’t think this impressed me!)
When things started to get more serious he pulled out the big guns and started taking me to fancy restaurants, days at Le Spa Nordik, and surprise one-night get-aways. I’m not going to lie; I loved all of those fancy dates, but I loved it even more when we began to get more comfortable with just hanging out and watching a movie, going for a walk, or meeting up over our lunch hour downtown to catch up and people watch.
Valentine’s Day is one week away, so we have been chatting about what we should do together. I play ball hockey the evening of the 14th so we decided to celebrate early and do something special together this weekend. After work, on Friday, we are planning to skate Rideau Canal and check out Winterlude. Skating on the canal is one of my most favourite winter activities. We have been twice so far this year and I’m hoping to get out 8 more times to make it 10. I’ll keep you posted if I reach my goal. It’s easy for us to get in a quick evening skate since we work and live so close by.
We also wanted to make some plans for Saturday during the day. We were thinking of using the gift certificates Derek got me for Christmas for Bleu Spa – it’s a newer version of Le Spa Nordik in Cantley, Quebec. I’m anxious to check it out but honestly am not feeling too hot in a bathing suit these days, so I’m saving it until the effects of Christmas wear off. Derek, being a typical man, told me that I was stupid but that I looked awesome, and then agreed to let me choose something else.
Guess what I chose?! An afternoon of furniture shopping!!!
For some, this may seem like an odd way to celebrate Valentine's Day, but to me it's perfection.
Side note: when I was single, one of my favourite ways to spend a weekend afternoon would be to grab a coffee and browse the furniture stores downtown in the Market. I would roam the stores, imagining my favourite pieces in my dream home while at the same time eavesdropping on couples who were furniture shopping together. I would hear them discuss their likes and dislikes about couches and tables and how it would fit in their new condo. I would long to join their conversation, or better yet, have a partner of my own to join me in my hunt for the perfect desk. I know - this was sort of creepy. Thankfully I now have my partner, Derek, so I don't have to live vicariously through the strangers in EQ-3.
I'm pretty sure Saturday afternoon furniture browsing is not one of Derek's top ideas for a good time, but it's Valentine's Day, which means he has to humour his future wife.
I've made a list of stores I would like to visit. For the most part they are stores which I have never been to before. I'm really looking forward to discovering some hidden gems and getting inspiration!
Here's my list (in no particular order):
- Funky Furniture Ottawa - mid century used furniture (my new obsession)
located at 185 Eddy Street in Hull
- Mikaza - husband and wife owned, specializing in modern furniture, lighting and décor
located at 120 du Portage in Old Hull
- The White Monkey - vintage and retro furniture and accessories from the 50's, 60's and 70's
located at 395 Gladstone Avenue in Ottawa
- Found Design - vintage and mid century modern design
located at 164 Elm Street in Ottawa
- Green Light District - unusual furniture and accessories from markets across the world
located at 223 Dalhousie Street in Ottawa
- Blueprint Home - fresh, elegant and modern furniture
located at 1301 Wellington Street in Ottawa
- Alteriors - contemporary furniture and lighting
located at 1304 Wellington Street in Ottawa
I'm pretty excited, as you may be able to tell! We are planning on heading out around 11am, grabbing a coffee and beginning our adventure on the Quebec side. All the stores are located pretty centrally so we won't have to do too much driving.
Some items I will be looking for specifically include
- stools for our kitchen island
- chairs for our living room
- a coffee table
- a desk for the bedroom
Here are some pieces of furniture I really loved from browsing the stores' websites:
1960's teak lounge chairs for the living room from Found Design
awesome bench for the entrance from Blueprint Home
great stackable stools for our island from Blueprint Home
love this desk for the bedroom from Mikaza
floor lamp from Mikaza
Once the summer and nicer weather hits I am looking forward to scouring garage sales, antique auctions and flea markets. But until then I will enjoy these heated stores and hopefully leave with some great ideas and maybe a deal or two!
Am I missing any must-see furniture stores in Ottawa? If so, please fill me in. And what does everyone else have planned for the big V-day?