Monday, March 19, 2018

January 2018 - Snippets

We are mid of March and I wonder where did January go?

Having fun with my coffee cup sleeves collection.

Visiting a friend's home and finding my old slippers I left there...still waiting for me.

Grateful for these 2 cuties from friends.

A buffet dinner at an Amish restaurant where the quilts were so gorgeous.

Friday, March 16, 2018


Collingwood, Ontario
February 8-10, 2018

Collingwood is our go-to place whenever we just want a short road trip. It is a mere 2.5 hour drive from Toronto, it is familiar and it has the urban amenities with old town feels.

Rounding up the usual suspects :
Heavenly Cafe'  for tea and sweets upon arrival.

 After a relaxing massage at LivingWater Spa, Truffle Mushroom then Chocolatissimo at Lakeside View Grill. 

Millennium Park at -13 deg C

At the Blue Mountain Village after the Sunset Grill breakfast.
Breakfast courtesy of son who won the $50 gift card.

Collingwood Terminal

The Bear Estate at Living Water Resort.

Take it easy on yourself. 
Whatever you do today, let it be enough.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

My Driving Life - Road Trip 1

Scarborough to Collingwood, Ontario
3 hours each way
Feb 8 and 10, 2018
(All photos taken by hubby)

I miss taking road trips - be it short or long. I love my home but I also love being on the road. Scenic routes of wheat fields, barns and old towns are my high. So we ventured on a short road trip with me behind the wheel - all the way. Collingwood is a short 2.5 hours from Toronto, it is a place familiar to us and we have a free 1 night stay in the resort courtesy of our son. Perfect!!

We started along Kennedy Road up to Bloomington, then Hiway 6, 31, 400, 18, 42 and finally 26. We  avoided the highway and took some deserted side roads with hills and valleys. We passed by 2 round-abouts which scared me because you have to be careful to yield and watch incoming traffic. Going back from Collingwood we took a different road - highway 89, 27, 9, 31 and 6.

Thoughts and Lessons learned on this road trip.

  • As a new driver, I did not get to enjoy the road sights. Nor did I enjoy music or good conversation.
  • I have to own my space on the road. Hubby keeps reminding me I should stay on my lane.
  • There are too many road signs I have to read/notice. Follow the lane, merging lanes, speed limits.
  • To ingrain the habit of looking in all the mirrors, double check before making a lane change, making proper light signals.

My Favorite expression on this trip.

What?! 80 km/hr again? 

The trip made me re-think of the 5 major points a driver should know as emphasized by my driving instructor.
  • Get the big picture.
  • Keep your eyes moving
  • Drive with 101% focus and concentration
  • Keep distance
  • Communicate
It was a good first try. More practice needed.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

My Driving Life - Snow and Slush

December 23, 2017

Survived 45 minutes of driving in uptown Toronto with freezing/rain and snow! It was not as bad as I thought. In fact, I liked it more because there was no pressure on me to drive fast and keep up with the speed limits. Everyone was driving slowly and cautiously.

Roles have changed as hubby is now navigator and I am driving.

Sometimes good things fall apart so better things can fall together.
~ Marilyn Monroe

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

My Driving Life - On My Own

And so I now have a driver's license and technically I can drive away. But in reality that is not true with me. I may have passed the test but I am still not confident to drive on my own. Right after I passed the test I went for a 2 week vacation and when I came back - the routine was the same. Hubby drives wherever I want to go. It never occurred to us that I should take the wheel once in a while. The hubby driving is always very convenient.

A year after I had my official license I am back to square 1. This time however is for reals. I have to drive now - if I need to get anywhere. The first time I had to pick up my son at the nearby corner I could not imagine what I was doing. We arrived that is all I knew about that day. After that day I swore I will be driving.

The month of November 2017 was all practice driving on weekends and some week nights. The hubby was beside me all the time and I am bombarded with instructions, reminders, a list of my errors. December 2017 the hubby left for a 3 week vacation. YAY! Finally, it is my time!

The first time I drove on my own was on early new year's day. It had to be new year's day and early for lesser traffic. Drove around the nearby strip mall, practiced parking on the deserted area, drove around several blocks in our area and did it twice. When I noticed more vehicles in the road, I headed home and parked.

Second time to drive on my own was to drop something at a friends' home. I mapped out my route, got out of the garage alright. Not even 500 meters from my place a portion of the road was closed. Darn! I only know of one way to get there. I had to do a quick detour and parked in the nearby strip mall. Then the windshield got foggy and blurry. I had no idea how to get rid of the fog! I thought I must park somewhere so that the sun will evaporate this condensation. I also thought there must be something in this car I have to push to get rid of the fog - or I will return home and abort my plan altogether. Search and push buttons. It worked. Now to re-map my route (hoping for lesser left turns). I made it with 3 left turns!!! Drop the item at my friends' place, did a 3 point turn and headed back home with again 3 left turns. Whew!!

Third time to drive on my own was to drop items at the nearby Salvation Army - an activity that needs to be completed before the hubby arrives. This seems to be an easy run - but it was a work day with normal number of vehicles along busy Kennedy road. It was a successful drive except that I had a little difficulty parking with snow, mud and water. Did not dare go to any other place afterwards.

Straight roads do not make skillful drivers ~ Paulo Coelho