April 17, 2014

Some pictures from my little trip to Boston! 

It was really charming and quaint, with adorable accents. 

If you didn't already know, I love libraries.

Big fan of old buildings too. 

With the cutest window boxes!

Public Spaces

And little boutique shops with cute window displays.

Highlight for Don? The USS Constitution, which is still in service!

Lisa, Tom, and I are obviously doing our part to serve the naval fleet.

And then we represented on the destroyer too.

Walked all along the freedom trail, but really needed a pick me up in the afternoon. That's what cafés in little Italy are for, right?

More shiny sights.

And a rare photo of Don and I together on vacation! Thanks, Lisa. 

We also ate lots and lots of oysters. 

It was a beautiful city that I would definitely go back to, perhaps in warmer months when things are a little greener? I imagine it's very photogenic in the late spring/early summer.

T'was a good time that I am missing already!

My Gang(s) of New York

April 15, 2014

With all my photo editing, I thought I'd share some non-phone photo snips of the big apple and Brooklyn with you. Really, it was just me going to visit Dan & Leanne, but, we were lucky to run into lots of friends and have them around for major league fun times. 

Jaimen and Nick!

And Claire & Lisa

The subway takes us to our adventure destinations!

Played lots of arcade games and used up all my friends' quarters.

Eating brunch

Hanging out at museums (in this case it was Leanne on the 4th floor of the New Museum). Later that day we also went to go see the Earth Room.

 Considered making custom muppets for Dexter and Alice.

It was too rainy and then windy for us to go sailing, which was our plan. But we made due one afternoon by taking rowboats out in Central Park.

Don was the most coordinated and powerful at rowing (he sails).

Leanne and I… didn't do quite as well.

There was lots of relaxing, too much food and wine, but much quality time all around.

Flashback Friday!

April 12, 2014

I've been so thrilled to be back with the kids this week! I keep grabbing them and making them hug and kiss me, ignoring their squirming to be free from my clutches. 

Even finding this face-down floor crying pretty humorous! 

I mean, it's tough facing life's disappointments, right?

Sometimes you just have to have a good cry.

Dex isn't crying, but is definitely getting dramatic about having his photo taken. I was pleased to see the shirt we picked out for him fits perfectly. He's such a handsome little dude.

Alice has been helping me out with catching up with friends. We had the pleasure of her trotting up and down 124 Street, getting extremely dusty and dirty, while we had our warm drinks and treats.

Just because of logistics, we were at city hall more than usual this week. Alice is really into tortilla chips and struts around like the boss of snacks.

 She also sandwiched herself between the front door and the screen door.

In non-child-related news, I was at the Pilgrims Hospice shooting some footage for one of my little videos. I'm honourary chair of their Walk in My Shoes Gala and wanted to create something for our guests to see the Pilgrims Hospice through my eyes. Here I am with Marion, the founder!

I didn't know much about hospices until recently. They're so underfunded, and provide essential services like supporting those with progressive life-threatening illnesses (and their families). So let's say you're a caretaker for someone in your family who has a progressive life-threatening illness. Pilgrims' day program gives clients a chance to gather and hang out over lunch and social activities while their caretakers take some rest, or run normal errands like... getting groceries. You name it.

It's also a place that provides counselling and assistance to the bereaved. It's not very vogue to talk about dying, but it's a reality for everybody and the families they leave behind. I really admire the work at Pilgrims Hospice, from their staff to their warm volunteers. And I'm really excited about helping promote their cause!

One of these evenings I was mountain biking to the opera.

I let my friend borrow the prettier bike. Although, my ugly Kona (mountain bike) is still my trusty friend and I love her.

However, once the snow is gone I'll take every Pashley ride I can get! Spring has started to timidly emerge for Edmonton, but it's still cool enough to need some tights or socks to get through the day.

I took the Pashley over to our neighbouring wine bar, and it was 10 minutes door to door. Can't wait to report this to my neighbours as we plan our summertime pilgrimages to Glass Monkey!

All and all super busy as usual, especially now that the snow is gone. Lots of things coming up with volunteer work, year-end for my students and general planning for the warmer months. I am now obsessed with getting our little trailer ready for camping fun times:) Hence my unearthing some things in the garage this weekend.

See you on the other side!

Madama Butterfly

April 9, 2014

It was the first bare-legged ride of the season… and it was absolutely glorious! 

My darling Amor and I rode to see Edmonton Opera's Madama Butterfly. Being her first ride in a dress, I let her have the Pashley. 

Amor was a bit nervous about riding, but when the theatre is only 12 blocks away you don't walk, wait for the train, or deal with traffic. You RIDE!

As for the production, it was wonderful. I've seen Madama Butterfly at least twice before last night (so many years of opera I've lost count), and once was even in London. Anne Sophie Duprels basically sung the whole show and was remarkable. The best Butterfly I've yet to hear and see, hands down. 

My sister, Sable, also happened to be in the chorus! I was so proud and happy to see her in her geisha get up during intermission. 

If you're in Edmonton and free tonight, grab yourself a last minute ticket! It will be worth it, for some of the most beautiful opera out there. 

I'm sure you'll have even more fun if you get to cruise past all the parkade congestion too. 

Tee hee!

Boston & Cambridge

April 8, 2014

I'm back! 

After the train stations and airports, then the subsequent arrival home with laundry and grocery shopping - I've finally had time to sit and blog again. Phew. 

I was visiting friends in NYC over the spring break! Since I frequent the big apple, I now try to tack on a little side trip via train to a nearby-ish area. Last year it was Philly, this year it was Boston & Cambridge. 

Boston is beautiful! Something about red brick brownstones look a little more charming than brown brick brownstones (in my opinion). I was coming down from a weekend of intense walking and dancing all night, so my first day continuing to walk all around Beacon Hill and surrounding area was more icing on the cake. 

I'm a sucker for libraries and in particular, reading rooms. The Boston Public Library is gorgeous and grand.

 Amidst all our wanderings, it was necessary to get provisions for the hotel.

And when in Boston, one has to eat oysters.

B&G was a really good time - I also had a lobster roll.

The next day, we did The Freedom Trail backwards, and started out at the USS Constitution.

I got to ring the bell to signal 14:00. It was very loud.

Meandering and walking all over, eventually landed us on the green line for transport to our dinner destination.

 Dan & Leanne sent me recommendations to go to this amazing Boston version of elm café. Mike & Patty's. The sammies are made with love and are oh-so-delicious.

I also took a coconut doughnut to go, which I later ate at the MIT campus. Took a little student-led tour of Harvard too. Both campuses are totally unique from one another. The Harvard experience was focused a lot on history whereas the MIT campus tour (again, just a student-led thing) was focussed on student life, multi-disciplinary opportunities, and innovation. 

I want to be a student at MIT! 

Though somebody is going to have to tutor me in the calculus. You know, the basic entry-level one. 

Our lodgings in NYC didn't have bath tub soaking, so when I saw that the rubber duck was perched on top of my Boston hotel tub, I went for it. Minor reprieve for my tired walking feet. 

Then it was the Acela back to NYC where I proceeded to consume more calories than I could walk off. The amount of food and drink was appalling. Turns out I have no self control when it comes to bakeries and Empanada Mama

More on that later! 

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