Wednesday, July 30, 2014

The Ladies who Lunch

This morning I decided to do a little baking. My birthday is coming up this weekend and I have been craving a sachertorte for some time and decided to try and make myself one as a birthday gift to myself. Searching online I found a vegan recipe at Cinnamon Girl's website that looked promising. The site suggested taking a couple of days to prepare the cake, so this morning I made the cake and will tackle glazing and icing it tomorrow. Here's hoping it looks as yummy as this:

For lunch I met Mr.D on College Street so we could walk to our favourite dim sum place Rol San for a light lunch. He has a vacation week off from work and it was the perfect way to spend an afternoon with a friend. After lunch we walked down to Queen Street looking for a new zipper for his bag, then back north through Kensington Market so he could sample some of the wares from the newly opened Bunner's. Ever chance I get I pop into their new store to give them as much business as possible, while sampling their yummy wares. I have always loved their butter tarts, but have since discovered that their banana split cupcakes are just as yummy. A bananay/strawberry cake and creamy centre covered with delicious strawberry frosting and topped with a slice of banana and strawberry, they are pure vegan heaven. Sadly, today they didn't have any the banana split cupcakes so instead I had a chocolate chip cookie while Mr.D sampled some of their other wares. It was the perfect way to end an afternoon lunch. 

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Memento Mori


LUDO by Oll-Iz FMR

Waiting Around

Yesterday I spent all day at home waiting around for a delivery of the deck chairs we ordered at Canadian Tire on Saturday. Although the delivery time was sometime between 1-4, the morning was a washout from an evening of rain. Waiting around I decided to watch Philomena on the Apple TV from the Apple Store. The story is about Philomena Lee, an older Irish woman who decides to search for a child she gave up for adoption in one of the Irish nunneries back in the 1950s. Judi Dench who plays Lee gives another incredible performance that brings you to tears as she searches for her son. In the end she just wants to know if her son ever thought of her and tries desperately to answer this question. It is a heart-renching and beautiful film about love, longing and loss. For dinner I decided to turn some left over sweet potatoes into a version of a Thai pumpkin soup. 

Waiting around all day the delivery guy arrived at the end of our delivery window just 10 minutes before four. The chairs came in large boxes and required a little work. This meant putting two pieces together, but once assembled they looked great on our deck. The table and chairs we previously had were sold on Sunday to someone on Craigslist, helping to offset the cost of the new chairs. The new chairs make the deck feel more open and relaxed, giving us not only a place to sit, but also to lie down to soak up the great outdoors. All we need now is something for a coffee table in front of the chairs. 

Monday, July 28, 2014

Monday, Monday


Thinking About...

There has been a lot of attention in the Canadian news about young Canadians joining foreign groups advocating Islamist violence. Indeed the media has discovered a number of young Canadians traveling abroad who then work with Islamist groups advocating violence, dubbed "terror tourists" by Justice Deena Baltman. 

Last week Mohamed Hersi, a University of Toronto graduate was arrested and convicted using a new Canadian law (Bill S-7: the Combatting Terrorism Act) which criminalizes travel related to participation in terrorist activities. This law instituted by the federal Tories expands the 2001 Anti-Terrorism Act allowing Canadian police to arrest those "leaving or attempting to leave Canada" with an intent to commit terrorism. 

Tories argue that Canadian police agencies need such laws to protect Canadian society from threats that come from within. But do we want to live in a society that defines security by detention, arrest and conviction based on intent rather than action? We have instituted a terrorist watch that is akin to Philip K. Dick's idea of "pre crime" that he outlined in his short story Minority Report. Is it in the best interest of any state to convict based on intent? Is this the best way to address this issue? Would it not be better to discover why young men are drawn to these organizations and try to address their concerns? Is it really necessary for Canada as a state to police their behaviour outside of our borders? Were does this kind of law based on intent end? There is something terrifying about laws that address intent, no matter what that intent is, that leaves me feeling more scared of a government that uses such legislation than any ideas of security or protection. 

A Sunday Walk

Another sunny day, so Mr.T and I walked down Bathurst Street to the Martin Goodman Trail. We decided to head west like a lot of cyclists, runners and others out strolling enjoying a beautiful, sunny day. We made it to the footbridge that joins the trail to Roncesvalles walking across it to Queen Street. At the corner where Queen, King and Roncesvalles meet was an all day breakfast place Eggsmart and we stopped so Mr.T could indulge in some eggs. From there we made our way home walking east on Queen and then north on Bathurst. In all we walked a good 14k and found ourselves tired after arriving home. 

Sunday, July 27, 2014

The Beauty of Decay

When in doubt...

Greg Matthews, Demi-Soloist, Vienna State Ballet

Saturday Shopping

Mr.T emerging from the mists of time @ The Four Seasons

Yesterday after our Saturday morning foray to Kensington Market Mr.T and I went for a walk on Bloor Street. We did a little shopping and then headed over to Canadian Tire to check out some deck chairs for our deck. Currently we have a dining table and chairs, but after dinner at restaurant on the shore of Lake Ontario I fell in love with the idea of having lounge chairs instead of a dining table. Since then I have been looking around for something similar, but the lounge chairs are really expensive. Canadian Tire had a version of them that was cheaper and the set was put on sale on Friday. The problem was how to get these oversized loungers home. At Canadian Tire this solved when we learned they have a delivery service, so on Monday the new chairs will be delivered. 

We then walked down Yonge Street and made our way home via Wellesley. At home we took a giant zucchini and turned it into zucchini patties so that we could freeze them for later. Having some for dinner with some curry french fries. 

Friday, July 25, 2014

Another Walk

Another bright, beautiful sunny day and another day of walking. Mr.T joined me today, walking west on College to the West Toronto Rail Trail. We then walked north on the trail to its end just north of the Junction, exiting onto a street that led to Davenport. We then made our way along Davenport to St.Clair finding ourselves back at the Stockyards. Walking through the shops we then headed south to the Canadian Tire, to check out some chairs for the deck, and then to RONA. The long walk left us tired and so we caught a bus back to the subway station. 

Arriving downtown we were hungry and looking around for a restaurant decided to have a quick lunch at Kokyo. The place was almost empty with no one enjoying the outdoor patio. It turns out there was good reason. For years Kokyo was one of our go-to Japanese restaurants, but the quality of the food and the staff made it today disappointing. Not only did the food take forever, but when it did arrive it had little appeal. Sad, to see what was once a good restaurant slipping so badly. 

Never Doubt Yourself


Don’t second-guess yourself…
via TO Gifs

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Walking & Window Shopping

Another bright, beautiful sunny day and I decided to go for another long walk. Heading north on Bathurst Street at Dupont I decided to head west towards the Junction. At Keele Street I turned north to check out the stores at The Stockyards; RONA, Canadian Tire, Home Depot and across the road in the new Stockyards shopping complex, Home Sense, Winner's, Target and Pier1. Finding myself tired I then caught a bus back to Keele Street subway making my way home.