Saturday, October 19, 2019

THANKSGIVING WEEKEND WALK

This picture looks like a painting to me. 
I have woken Rob up at 3am to go looking for Snowy Owls. I get him out of bed in the middle of the night to look at the moon or try to find shooting stars. Luckily for me, he always obliges my quirky requests. So last weekend when I woke up early and asked in the dark if he wanted to get up for an early morning nature walk, I knew he would.

I love Fall, and I could feel it's arrival last weekend. I wanted to be out as the sun was rising and enjoy the fresh, crisp Fall air. We went to our regular Sunday morning nature walk spot, and it wasn't hard to notice that Mother Nature was putting on a colourful display before her Winter slumber.

Click on the photos to enlarge them.
The ground was covered in frost as we arrived.
I liked the shadow effect here.
The Sumac turns such a lovely red.
Rob picking apples for our furry backyard friends.
Such a peaceful place.  
This picture does not do this beautiful tree justice.  
I walk here is always a great start to our Sunday.
For the first time, I can honestly say I took all the photos in this blog. I was testing out a little Nikon camera Rob's Dad gave us. It's smaller then a cell phone, but take lovely pics!

Monday, September 30, 2019

ROB'S 50TH BIRTHDAY WEEK

Rob had his big 50 and we took a week off to celebrate!
Rob and I had the week of September 15th off work. We usually try to take this week off for vacation, but this year it was a little more special. Rob had a milestone birthday, and I wanted to make it memorable.

On the morning of Saturday, September 14th he was presented with a letter. This letter let him know that we weren't only celebrating his birth "day", but his birth "week", and everyday we were on vacation, during his morning coffee, he would be given a gift.
First gift of his birthday week, a raptor encounter at Mountsberg Conservation Area.
Rob enjoying some one on one time with Octavius at Mountsberg. 
Sunday Sept. 15th, his actually birthday was a pretty busy one. We met our friends at Black Angus Steak House for a delicious brunch. His parents and niece came over in the afternoon for birthday cake. And that evening I had set up a bit of a surprise. There was a WWE pay-per view on that evening, and our plan was to watch it. What he didn't know is that I had invited some friends over during the wrestling event. He was quite surprised when friends started showing up on a Sunday evening!
Black Forest, his favorite. 
Monday and Tuesday were mainly spent at home. We did run a few errands, and had a lovely dinner at a new favorite restaurant, Toast On Bloor, Tuesday evening. 
We enjoy our quiet days at home and the wildlife that visit our backyard.
Wednesday we finally used one of Rob's Xmas gifts. I had bought him a gift certificate for a VIP tour of Soper Creek Wildlife Rescue.  This visit deserves a blog of its own, so not going into details about our visit here.
Rob with one of the educational animals, an opossum.
We decided to make an overnight of this outing, and stayed in the beautiful little town of Coburg which was only another 40 minutes away. We stayed at Woodlawn Inn and I know this won't be our last visit there. Lovely, large room, big comfortable bed, and a delicious 5 star quality food in the dining room.
Woodlawn Inn
After breakfast and a morning walk we headed back to Toronto.
I lost count of how many Monarch Butterflies we saw, they were everywhere!
We had a beautiful morning walk before heading home.
We did have one stop in mind on our way home, Deadly Grounds Coffee cafe in Oshawa. We had tried their coffee at Fan Expo this year and loved it. When I found out they had a horror themed cafe, I knew we'd be checking it out eventually. It will be a regular stop when out that way.

Product available inside the cafe. We both enjoyed a coffee while there.
Purchases from our visit to Coburg and Deadly Grounds. 
Friday we joined friends for breakfast at Toast on Bloor and ran some errands.

Skunks are regular visitors the entire month of September, but Rob enjoyed having the extra time to take pics.
Saturday we met friends for an early dinner at Cactus Club at Sherway, and celebrate 3 September birthdays!
We had a new yard bird on Saturday, Chestnut-sided Warbler.
Sunday was mainly spent at home as Merry had her annual check-up, and because we have to medicate them for appointments we like to be home to keep an eye on them.

Rob with Merry on his birthday.
It was a fantastic week for us both!

I had friends ask what the daily gifts were, so here is the list:

Saturday- Raptor Encounter at Mountsberg.
Sunday- Bottle of JD and a comedic book about being 50.
Monday- Bulk Barn gift card and a bag of his favorite chocolate from there.
Tuesday- Body wash and new body sponge.
Wednesday- Raccoon T-shirt.
Thursday- Tim Horton's gift card.
Friday- Breakfast at Toast on Bloor.
Saturday- Bottle of  Salted Caramel liquor from Coldstream Clear in Nova Scotia.
Sunday- OLG scratch tickets- Pack of Classic Xtra.

Next to the JD, I think this Tee was his favorite gift. 




Tuesday, September 17, 2019

DESTROYER - TOTK 2019

Destroyer entertaining at "Taste of the Kingsway", Sept. 8th, 2019
September 8th, 2018, Rob and I attended "Taste of the Kingsway" for the first time. It was a beautiful Saturday afternoon, and we went for one reason, to see the ultimate Kiss cover band, Destroyer. We had a grand time. When we heard they were playing again this year we knew we were going to attend.

Sunday, September 8th, 2019, as we were walking towards the stage where Destroyer would be performing at 4:30pm we hear someone calling Rob's name from across the street. Three friends that Rob hadn't seen since high school, Cecil, Robin and another Rob. Awesome surprise for Rob and we enjoyed the Destroyer performance together.

Robin and I rocking out a little closer to the stage. 
Talking to "The Demon" (Moe) after the show.

Robin with "The Spaceman"(Michael).

It was a great show.
This year mark's Destroyer's 25th Anniversary. They are super talented muscian's and put on a very entertaining show. They are playing a club in our area in December, and we all plan on attending.

"Starchild" (Ian), waves goodbye has he heads to his car.





Friday, August 30, 2019

FUN AT FAN EXPO

Rob, Tariq, and I with a few Star Wars characters. 
Rob and I both booked Friday off last weekend to attend Fan Expo Canada. We hadn't been in a few years and were both looking forward to going. I was thrilled to hear Rob's long time friend, Tariq was going to meet us there as it's been years since I'd seen him too.

We didn't do any celebrity photo-ops or panels, but chose to browse the exhibits and displays. We both enjoyed watching a number of children get sorted into their houses by the "Sorting Hat" in the Family Zone.

This Hufflepuff is ready for Hogwarts!
Without a doubt our favorite part of Fan Expo and Comic Con's are the cosplayers. I love seeing the fans dressed up, and so many of them put in such hard work to making some unbelievable outfits. I also love that cosplay organizations like the 501st Legion and Ontario Ghostbusters set up elaborate displays and raise money for charities. 

I found a friendly Storm Trooper!
We met Violet Love in 2014  (click date) when I almost ran her down, I got overly excited when I saw her, as she was dressed as Vampirella, one of Rob's favs. She now has a huge fan base and a booth of her own at these shows, and we are always happy to see her. She remembers us fondly, as it's probably not often a wife is throwing her husband at her for photo ops. LOL! 

Rob with Violet. She makes all her own costumes. 
Tariq was happy to meet "Wonder Woman". 
The Lego creations at this years event were amazing!

Aqua Man!
Rob inside the Millennium Falcon cockpit.
You never know who you are going to see "cosplayed" at these event's and the following are a few of my favs from Friday.

We both thought "Fat Thor" from Avengers's End Game was awesome and unique!
First time seeing a Ghost Rider at one of these events, I was thrilled!
We've seen these Hobbits before, but what an awesome costume!
It was a long day with lots of walking, but so much fun. New discovery this year was Deadly Grounds Coffee which provided a much needed afternoon boost. The blends we tried were wickedly good, and we plan on visiting their cafe when we are on vacation next month.

I also scored a couple original Sabrina comics for my collection! Looking forward to next year, maybe I'll even dress up!


Wednesday, August 21, 2019

THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION


I'm one of those people, that when I fall in love, I fall all the way. Head over heels, passion and excitement fill me. This isn't just for people (my hubby), but also true for my favorite bands, books and movies. Def Leppard, Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings to name a few.

One of the great things about getting so excited about things is you never know when it's going to happen again. Like last Friday, I was home alone, as Rob was still working and I was scrolling movies on Netflix. I noticed The Shawshank Redemption. Rob has mentioned this movie to me numerous times over the last 15 years, but for one reason or another I had never watched it. Time to change that.

I didn't know it at the time I was watching the movie, that a five and a half hour drive away in a place called Mansfield, Ohio, the 25th Anniversary of the movie was taking place. That's where the movie was filmed and still celebrated. You can take the Shawshank Tour, not just on the anniversary weekend, when cast members are there and special events taking place, but any time of the year!

The movie is actually based on a novella that Stephen King wrote in 1982 titled "Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption". It can be found in his collection titled "Different Seasons", which I know I will be getting a copy of.

I fell in love with this movie. Rob and I watched it again together Saturday evening. It's a great story,  full of great lines and Morgan Freeman is incredible in his role.

If you've seen the movie, I know you are hearing this in Morgan Freeman's voice! LOL!

I've already told Rob I want to take a road trip in the coming year to do the Shawshank Tour. I want to sit on the bench with him where Brooks fed the pigeons.

Brook's Bench, where I hope to feed some pigeons next year.


This movie may take place is a dark, dreary prison, where horrible things happened, BUT it's also a place where friendship blooms, good wins, and hope never dies.



Wednesday, July 31, 2019

JULY RECAP

Molly enjoying some leash time in the backyard.
It's hard to believe tomorrow is August 1st. July seems to have flown by. We spent the majority of our free time in the backyard, where most of the following photos were taken. I also attended a concert this month, and we got social one Saturday, and spent some time in someone else's backyard!

Always a joy to have the Ruby-throated Hummingbirds visit.
We had some hot, hot, HOT days in July. Hard to have any energy in the extreme heat. 
Monarch in the garden.
Black Swallowtail and a bee enjoying the "Bee Balm".
I interrupt this peaceful nature moment to attend a rock n roll concert.......

VIP Meet and Greet with Tesla July 20th.
When Brian and I decided to attend the Def Leppard concert in Hamilton this year we did the VIP package for opening act, Tesla, who I have been a fan of since 1986. This was only my 3rd time seeing them, the first time being in 1988 just days before my 19th birthday in Halifax, and then not again until 2015 in Toronto. I don't know if it was the drinks with dinner, but I was pretty calm unlike when I did the VIP Meet and Greet with Def Leppard in Vegas back in 2013. It was great to have a few minutes of music chat with the band, very down to earth, friendly guys, I hope to see/chat with them again.   

Now, back to the backyard.

Papa Cardinal feeding one of his young. 
A clearer shot of them both.
Rob and Merry having a cuddle. 
Rob and I also spent a lovely afternoon in a friends yard in Hockley Valley, where we were treated to some delicious eats and great company. We hear it's a yearly event, and we look forwarding to being yearly attendees.
Enjoying a lovely afternoon in someone else's backyard. 
July was pretty memorable, but I have a feeling August is going to be pretty good too!