An escape from the city was needed. Toronto makes me rush all the time – to work, at work, and after work to get to whatever sports game that I have that night. It’s the same thing for Cy, and sometimes the odd night in is a relief – this means lying on the sofa and playing Candy Crush or Plants vs Zombies.
While the drive up to the cottage was long (holy 4 hours), it was completely worth it. We are serious about our cottageing, and it was going to be a stress-free, make up-free, and carefree kind of weekend in Tobermory with our friends, R, O, C, and D.
Look at Cy run, jump and climb his away around Tobermory!
Besides all that running around, we were also able to slow down. Our cottage weekend was made up of so many simple pleasures, like these:
- Waking up to a sunny day and fresh coffee
- Hiking around Bruce Peninsula National Park and seeing The Grotto for the first time
- Eating countless handfuls of chips while watching satellite tv (we don’t have this at home)
- Gazing at the dark skies full of countless stars
- Sharing hot chocolate and popcorn around a fire
And, all of the above is better shared with friends. After all, the cottage isn’t the cottage without friends.
Pinterest was invented for pictures to be taken at The Grange of Prince Edward, a winery about 2 hours east of Toronto. Cy and I snapped away as we enjoyed our “Day in the Life” tour as part of our fun times to celebrate our 2-year wedding anniversary. Really, it felt like yesterday when Cy was doing cartwheels at our wedding reception!
After a breakfast fuel up for our tour (and cartwheels), we were led outdoors to get started. You would think that the owner would be way too busy to take a small tour of four people (Cy, me, and our new and charming friends, T and D) for an entire morning and afternoon. But, no. The Grange of Prince Edward is run by Caroline Granger who is so hands on with her operation of the estate vineyards and winery. She gets and respects the field-to-table mentality with a sustainable spin on it all.
For example, all wine is produced from the on-site vineyards grown free of nasty pesticides – nature helps nature with alfalfa plants used to attract insect pests away from the grapes.
After touring the lush vineyards, we went to an organic chem. lab. Well, it felt like it with the beakers and graduated cylinders when it came to the blending exercise with white wines including Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, and Riesling . After three tries, we perfected something that actually tasted sweet, light and didn’t burn our throats! Caroline said that it was a “racy” wine blend.
Check out our bottles with our homemade labels – Cy and I created the ones with the castle die cuts (such keeners).
Next up was lunch! Chef Kyle prepared a too-cute picnic basket packed to the brim with goodies like with egg salad sandwiches (the eggs were freshly laid earlier that morn!) rainbow beet salad, Seed to Sausage meats and desserts – maple brioche “tim bits” and pear cheesecake with fresh cheese.
The tour continued with a view into the entire wine production process and a wine tasting! I recommend the Grange Fumé Blanc for it’s smokey and fruit taste.
After everything, we were pooped! Thank you, Caroline for your passion for honest-to-goodness approach to “craft” winery that turns the other cheek to the “corporate” ways of producing delicious wines.
NOTE: Cy and I were lucky to have enjoyed this experience as affiliate bloggers for Buytopia! Thank you to Melissa and her team there.
I’m sorry if I didn’t let everyone know, but I was in Vancouver for a one-day work event. The Art of Leadership was held last Thursday, and my coworker/friend A ballz and I were there to take it in. One highlight was watching Susan Cain who first crossed my YouTube screen first in a Ted talk on the power of introverts.
Another highlight was just being home. My entire family lives in Vancouver, and it’s almost a treat to go back due to limited vacation time and the ridiculous airline fees to/from Toronto. This past trip, I went on my own while Cy stayed in Toronto. I spent time with my family and in laws, and even caught some very quick bites with some very close friends.
While I was home, it was comfortable yet strange at the same time. I was surrounded by a once familiar life that I left behind nearly 3 years ago. Meals that my mom would make, the interactions with my family, the smell and taste of her cooking, old clothing from my university days, the neighbourhood that I’ve known so well that proudly boasts one of my favourite bakeries in the city…and more.
Even with all of these things, I was missing something and someone – my home that I made with Cy. It makes me think, what does home really mean to me now?
Back in the Van, Cy and I went to a lot of concerts together. Before we were “steady” (so Saved By The Bell), he asked me to the Weezer concert (2008) which was a whole month down the road. What a tricky situation, where you think to yourself – “are we still going to be together then?!” But, it worked out. I mean, we’ve gone more smokey, hoarse-throated concerts since then.
Now, that we are in Toronto. I feel like we haven’t taken advantage of all the different shows that come into town – or, even the cool, little venues.
Places like Echo Beach, Sound Academy, Lee’s Palace, Massey Hall, The Garrison, Drake Underground and other places that people tell us about.
Finally, we finally did something about it. We got pre-sale tickets today, and I’m excited.
SXSW to Toronto, Ms Mr is playing on May 22nd at Wrong Bar. My ears got a hold of them on a random 8tracks.com playlist (probably something tagged as indie pop and rock). And, I LOVE this duo.
The Ms does the vocals while the Mr does the music.
One of the best part parts? The tickets are only $12.50 (you can get them via Facebook presale today until 10PM via Live Nation with the access code of “ticket” – or, get them tomorrow via Ticketweb). Hello, do it!
Only 61 days until the show.