Wow, is it Tuesday already???

No time for a blog this week, sorry. See you next week. 

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If at first you don’t succeed …

There was a lovely story in Sunday’s New York Times. I laughed out loud when I got to the part where the author wrote, “my mother used to track me down in the event of my untimely murder; lord knows she has imagined plenty of gruesome ends for me. I can’t tell you the number of times that public safety officers showed up on my doorstep in college because I hadn’t returned her calls swiftly enough.”

She could have been writing about my mother.

While she never went so far as to call the police, she did manage to convince a friend of mine to become a search party of one. She (my mother) was convinced — because I’d been working late and was alone in the office — that I’d either been attacked, killed and shoved into the coat closet or was lying helpless, bloody and injured at the bottom of the elevator shaft, the result of an accident involving snapped cables. Yes, Continue reading

Glass half full …

Read this article over the weekend in Maria Shriver’s Sunday Paper. The author is talking to parents about how to raise optimistic children in pessimistic times, but I think it’s a great message for all of us to keep in mind as we navigate our way through life.

Happy Days — http://time.com/5370788/raising-optimistic-kids-pessimistic-times/

 

 

Go on give it a try.

I think this is a message the world needs to hear more now, than ever. So today I’m turning my blog over to Chris Black, “the poet’s poet,” who I’ve been following here on WordPress for six years. Enjoy, and do as the man says: “Smile.”

Today from the Man Shed

Live life with a smile

This will assist you

As you walk that weary mile

A door never closes

But another opens

Live life with a smile.

 

Live life with a smile

Bring happiness with you as you go

That burden may be heavy

Stand upright, face that foe

Turning your back is not the answer

Live life with a smile.

 

Live life with a smile

Learn not to recoil

As you step out into a new dawn

Smile instead of yawn

You have made it through another night

Live life with a smile.

 

Live life with a smile

Although at times it’s burdensome

That cross we have to bear

There is always someone less well off

Their cross they may wish to share

Live life with a smile.

 

Live life with a smile

Spread the happiness within you around

Put a spring in your step…

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Let them eat cake and plenty of it …

Yesterday was my mom’s birthday. I wish the photo was that recent, but both she and her twin sister, with whom she is celebrating, have both passed.

In fact, it goes back quite a while, because my mom moved to Toronto in 2000, after my aunt died. And when this was taken, she still lived in Montreal.

Clearly, they were surprised and happy. They loved birthday parties, everyone’s parties, and particularly their own. And most of all, they loved birthday cake. So I fully expect they had plenty of cake yesterday. And, if my Continue reading

Summer in the city …

The weather’s been so lovely, still hot, but without the humidity, we’ve had much of the summer. Can’t get enough of the outdoors. Last Friday I had to go to the bank and the tailor. Ended up walking for more than an hour, just didn’t want to be inside.

That night I had a fabulous dinner with a friend at an Italian restaurant in Yorkville (CIBO). It’s so interesting, there have been several restaurants in that spot and none of them have lasted that long, but this one is packed all the time.

I had farfalle with shrimp, spinach, capers, and lemon, it was delicious! It’s the second time I’ve had it there and I’ve tried to duplicate it at home. Mine is good, but theirs is better.

My friend had vegetable risotto and she said it was marvelous. Her Continue reading

Creature of habit

I really have no idea what made me think of this particular topic, but once I did, I really got into it and decided to take a closer look at myself. Turns out I have some pretty strange habits:

  • Brush my teeth before washing my face.
  • Shower before brushing my teeth.
  • Eat the same breakfast every day — fresh fruit, plain greek yoghurt, honey, chopped walnuts and a bit of granola.
  • Make the bed before having breakfast.
  • Have breakfast before getting dressed.
  • Dress in the same order — first bottom, then shoes, then watch, then top.
  • Replace vitamins, shampoo, detergent, condiments etc. when I’m halfway through them.
  • Take vitamins in the same order.
  • Empty the bottom half of the dishwasher before the top.
  • Read the Sunday New York Times in the same order — Style section, News, Arts, Sunday Business, Sunday Review, Travel, the Magazine and the Book Review last.

There’s no doubt in my mind there’s more. But I’m not sure I want to know.

Should I be admitting to any of this? Is it time for an intervention? Should I be seeking medical help? Do you feel like coming over to my apartment, throwing everything on the floor and mixing it all up so I’m forced to do it all in a different order (not that I’d blame you if you did, I’m tempted to do it myself)?

Okay, your turn now.

One week later …

This past Sunday I decided, on the spur of the moment, to visit The Danforth, otherwise known as Greektown in Toronto. It was warm and sunny, glorious really, the kind of day that always attracts locals, visitors from throughout the GTA (Greater Toronto Area) and tourists to the Danforth in droves. Not surprising with its abundance of boutiques and family-friendly restaurants and cafes — most with terraces and patios.

But of course, this wasn’t just another summer Sunday on The Danforth. One week earlier, on a beautiful summer night, this lovely, lively, friendly, family-oriented, safe, beloved neighbourhood was the scene of a horrific crime.

As seniors and twenty-somethings and students on summer break and parents with children talked and laughed and ate and sipped and licked dripping ice cream cones, shots suddenly rang out. And Continue reading

Back to doing what I love most …

I’ve been writing a lot lately about cutting back on my television viewing — or, more specifically — the News. So it won’t come as a surprise to hear that in the last couple of weeks I haven’t watched TV at all, and in the last month I don’t think I’ve watched even five hours.

Reading has been a passion my entire life. Even before I could read myself, I loved stories and was constantly bringing either my mum or dad a book so they could read to me. So it’s been disconcerting, and shocking to say the least, to find that in the past year or so, I’ve had a hard time carving off time to read, getting into whichever book(s) I’m reading and actually finishing them.

Too many distractions, I guess. Projects, deadlines, blogging, working on my own book, life, Trump — something’s always gotten in Continue reading

Portugal, India, New York and Oslo in a week

I can see you, sitting there, staring at my headline, saying to yourselves, “that’s not possible, and even if it was, who’d be crazy enough to do it?” Relax, I have no intention of trying it. But my week did include bits of all of them.

It began last Wednesday night when I had dinner with a friend. I don’t know if you’re the same, but I tend to always end up in the same neighborhood when I go out to eat — the one I live in. Why we tend to fall back on what’s familiar I don’t know, but it sure does get boring after a while.

So we decided to venture further afield and go to a little family-run Portuguese restaurant she’s been to before. It’s called Rush Hour and it’s in the west end of Toronto, on Dufferin.

No, I don’t know how a Portuguese restaurant ended up with that Continue reading