Tag Archive | life

Thursday & the things I love today! TILT returns, and so do I.

Well, well. Here I am again, back at the helm! So far June’s been a pretty busy, challenging time for me, so writing even the basics here has not been a priority. I started a new job just at the end of May, and then on the 1st of June we moved apartments. I would recommend to anyone that this is not the greatest idea in the world, but it just kinda worked out that way. At least it’s all out of the way and summer can get on, now!

So to kick off this first TILT of the summer, let’s give some love to my new place! We’re still not fully unpacked and organized, but the important stuff is there, and we have a totally sweet new couch! It’s a nice little one bedroom, north facing, and in the ‘hood with Grange Park and the Art Gallery of Ontario! And I love that it’s such a short walk to work for me!
We’ve spent a lot of our downtime between unpacking playing a lot of Mario Kart 8. Oh man, is it ever fun! I have slowly been improving since I first sat down to play, but Adam still beats me every time. Just like at board games! I can swear loudly a lot more when sitting down to a Grand Prix of Mario Kart 8, though ūüėÄ The best part of the release of this game has been the wonderful video captures and GIFs of Mario Kart TV, showing fantastic driver reactions. Especially Luigi’s death stare. I love it so much.
Toronto is still rockin’ on being a great city for vegans, and this weekend will be no exception! The city’s first vegan pop up market is happening on Sunday June 15th. I am so looking forward to going to an event like this, that I know is curated to contain great vendors, and that I can walk around happy to spend my money knowing it won’t compromise my values. Hoorah! Maybe you’ll come too?
Last of all, I love that the snacks at work contain delicious vegan options, including Cocoa Camino’s wonderful dark chocolate peanut butter bars. Mmmmm. Sugar fuel and happiness.

Not the usual.

I’ve had a tough time motivating to make my ‘usual’ sorts of posts this last little while. I haven’t forgotten about my digital dozen posts, it’s just seemed like a lot of effort to curate them (I am hoping for one tomorrow though). And my efforts haven’t exactly been stellar for throwback Thursdays /Things I love Thursday either. It’s not to say i’m not still trawling my reader for neat things daily, getting nostaglic about the good old times through photos or being happy and thankful for things in my life big & small, I just haven’t had the mental energy to articulate blog-wise about ’em like usual.

However! I haven’t been totally absent, which is nice. I have kept up some content, albeit infrequently, and that’s good! It’s usually a total fall by the wayside for me and blogging. Hence the “I’m not sure what this is about but it’s something” sort of catch up.

Let’s think about recent times.. I hosted a bunch of wonderful vegan ladies for soup exchange (like a cookie exchange, but with jars of soup and way more practical and amazing for winter!) which was really just a lovely sort of potluck and hangout and a great excuse to have a solid pack of wonderful people packed into my apartment. I started back in therapy which I’m hoping will help me enter the new year with a better perspective and arm myself for the next few years of life now I’m settled here and figuring out what I want to do with myself. I’ve gone to the ROM for various reasons (member previews, late night events) and that’s been enriching the museum pocket of my soul (rather large and cavernous). Laughed my way through seats in the splatter zone of the Evil Dead Musical, which has finally come back to Toronto (so much fun!). Brunched at fancy-pants vegan restaurant Grasslands with a few vegan besties, the best way to spend a hungover Sunday morning. Saw the Doctor Who 50th anniversary special in the cinema with my gorgeous friend Jamie, among a crowd of Whovians. Attending the veg book club for the first time, with the added bonus of brunch and great company was wonderful. I’ve been playing lots of board games in general as well, obviously, but having a mini veg-folks game day was great also. Have enjoyed the first bits of winter peering over the horizon, too. Alas none of this recent times stuff involves crafting or creating, which I just gotta get on top of, or being more active/gymming more. Boo.

And among all of that there has been my family downtime, chilling out and recharging with Adam and Jake, nesting and being at home. It’s what I pin my sanity on and would be lost without it, really!

I had a trawl through my phone’s photo gallery to see what I might not have shared (or shared much) over the last bit, so here’s some pictures to wrap up. Thanks for staying tuned.

Woodpile

One of the many soups from the soup exchange! Mmm.

 

Apple fritters @ Grasslands for brunch

Hangover Helper scramble! Apropos.

 

Yarn shopping

Beautiful door at a friend’s wedding venue, Enoch Turner Schoolhouse.

Sometimes I don’t even know what is going on with the strange things people post around the neighbourhood.

And have I mentioned it’s so friggin’ nice at this time of year?

 

 

And with that, I sign off!

Things I Love Thursday!

Wow, where has the week gone? I’ve been meaning to say so many things, post so many photos – but it’s not happened! I hope to queue up some stuff for the days ahead – talking about my residency/job search, maybe taking part in a month long photo challenge, chatting about an exhibit I visited, games I’ve been playing, linking around to some Vegan Mofo stuff, product reviews.. There’s gotta be some space in my brain to churn those out! Until then, here’s what’s keeping me happy.

Postcards! One of my favourite things is receiving/collecting postcards. I’ve posted a small selection of what i’ve got on my walls before, but this week postcards have been happy-making because I’ve been getting them in the mail, another fave thing of mine! From Waterton & Prince Edward Island in Canada, and all the way from the UAE! It’s awesome, and they’re hanging out on the fridge making me wish I was going exciting places to collect more postcards.

A good while ago now I joined a vegan knitting group here in Toronto; I’ve got a little crafting in my bones and I wanted to meet some other lovely vegans. As a result I learnt to knit a little, but ended up learning how to crochet also and loving it even more! I just find it so much easier to grab the yarn and hook and go about something and the motions are much easier to remember. ¬†I’ve tried all sorts of things – hats, scarves, dishcloths, coasters, toys – and learnt a bunch of stitches and combinations along the way which make me feel more confident I could whip something up off the top of my head. Maybe I should give hat making another try!

I love that my garden has been going well! Some hitches to begin with, but great amounts of green abound. ¬†A modest amount of cherry tomatoes, some lovely herbs for dressings and salads, and more red hot chilis than I know what to do with. I’m sad as we go into fall (autumn) that I’ll have to harvest everything down to the nub in preparation for it all to die off in the winter. Booo.

Garden August/Sept

And speaking of fall (autumn) – this is such a nice time of year! I love¬†September anyhow, because it’s my birthday month, but even doubly so now that I get beautiful cooler weather and turning leaves to go with it (rather than albeit lovely spring weather back home, but terrible hayfever allergies, urgh!). September in Toronto is busy as folks squeeze the last bit of summer out of patios and parks and the islands, the Vegetarian Food Festival is on, and TIFF hits town. So much stuff going on! And I’ll be heading to Montreal for the last weekend of the month with my sweetie to celebrate my birthday this year. Awesome.

Enjoy your Thursdays, folks – or Fridays if you’re already on the way into it.

Waiting for change.

“There is nothing permanent except change.” Heraclitus, quoted in Lives of the Philosophers by Diogenes Laertius.

It’s pointless to resist change, it happens around us – most often without us even realising – and before we know it things/people/life is just different. As enduring as change is, it’s always been a challenge for me to deal with. Not the incremental stuff, but the big things that loom or are dropped on top of us suddenly. Whether we’re powerless to do something about it, or we’re the ones making the choices that lead to change.. well, that shit can be pretty tough.

I have changed a¬†lot in the past 15-ish years. I can see it clearly in hindsight, but it wasn’t really obvious to me at the time. The changes that were “Big Things” were always the ones I had to have a very present part in – changing my direction in tertiary studies, changing my life to become vegan, changing from a stable life to uprooting to move overseas to see where that took me, and even more than this. I was so afraid of it all, but none of it turned out for the worse. I wish hindsight had me better prepared for change as it comes up now, heh.

Life this week has been a hovering mess of impending change – I can see all of it will be for the good, but the waiting to see the outcomes has me completely on edge. I’m changing part of my life to move on from a place that’s been very emotionally draining this year. I’m waiting on a change in my status from visitor to permanent resident. Soon we’ll (hopefully!) change from a regular couple to dog parents (yay!). I can’t guarantee when much of it happens, but I look forward to that tipping point where the waiting is behind me and the benefits of change will be reaped.

I feel like bookending this with another quote from a famous philosopher will help sum up where I’m at this morning:

“Ahh, the waiting game sucks. Let’s play Hungry Hungry Hippos!” – Homer (Simpson)

Le Weekend

I feel like it’s been forever since TCAF, but it was only just the weekend gone before this holiday weekend just passed. I think i’m just wavering up and down with social exhaustion/anxiety a bit much to have time swinging by at a usual-feeling pace. I got out and about a reasonable amount this weekend at least, which was great. Lots of good things I can pinpoint when looking back, rather than just feeling overwhelmed with how blah I was at times.

Furthering my quest to make it a nice summer hangout, we got a nice patio set for our balcony; we then got the bikes¬†off the balcony & in riding condition (greased chains, tires pumped etc) which is awesome. ¬†Although, our building’s bike parking is a godawful mess & it’s so difficult to find a good spot to chain up (& having Adam’s bike in the apartment is more than enough already; wish we could get someone with a super ultra great drill to come & attach us a wall-mounted bike rack!).

We headed to the Toronto Islands on Sunday – specifically Ward’s Island, where there’s a disc golfing course. I had some beginner’s luck, but was fairly inconsistent. It was just nice to have a chance to wander around in the lovely outdoors on a beautiful sunny (but not too hot!) day. Even better were awesome wildlife sightings! At one point, searching for a lost disc in the scrub, I spotted a wee garter snake! And toward the end of our wandering, we had an osprey circle nearby & land gracefully in a tall tree near the fairway we were on. I wish I’d managed to snap some photos of that – instead, mostly Island-y stuff.

For lost discs! Ward’s Island, Toronto.

Adam driving down the fairway (spot the disc?)

Some of the rough scrub around the disc golf course, Ward’s Island

It’s gotten thunderstormy this week, but it’s still mostly nice. I hear this summer’s not supposed to be as brutal as Toronto’s last year (but really, i’m grateful summer lasts less than 5 months at a time here!). This week ahead bodes well for good hangouts and trying to get more settled into summer in the apartment. Perhaps a trip to Ikea.. I do also hope that the blogging flows as much as it has been already – it’s still a rocky road to settle back into a writing tone that’s not quite so conversational (like this for instance, seems like an email!) but we’ll get there. I hope to also figure out a little more how I can embed images in a less “long vertical line” & more gridlike, without having to upload them here (all these point to my Flickr account). Suggestions welcome!