The Best Markets and Blog Parties

Hello and welcome to Weekend Coffee Share #5! I’m glad you’re here. Please come on in, help yourself with a cup of coffee, or tea, or hot chocolate at my coffee station, and let’s chat.

1. The Best Indoor Food Markets

One of my recent bicycle rides was to St. Lawrence Market, which was constructed in 1803, and was named the best food market in the world by National Geographic in 2012.

The St. Lawrence Market Complex consists of the South Market (Main market), the North Market (Saturday Farmers’ market), and St. Lawrence Hall (Offices and rental venue).

St. Lawrence Market, Toronto, Canada since 1803.
St. Lawrence Market, Toronto, Canada since 1803.
St. Lawrence Market doors.
St. Lawrence Market doors.

St. Lawrence Market reminds me of the Great Market Hall or Central Market Hall, the largest and oldest indoor market in Budapest, Hungary, built in 1897.

Great Market Hall, Budapest, Hungary since 1897.
Great Market Hall, Budapest, Hungary since 1897.

Both markets have similar interior layouts. St. Lawrence South Market has two levels: The main and lower levels of St. Lawrence South Market contain over 120 specialty vendors, known for the variety and freshness of their fruit, vegetables, meat, fish, grains, baked goods and dairy products, as well as for the uniqueness of the non-food items for sale.

Side view of the South Market two levels.
Side view of the 2-storey St. Lawrence South Market.

The Great Market Hall has three levels: Most of the stalls on the ground floor offer produce, meats, pastries, candies, spices, and spirits. The second mezzanine floor has eateries and tourist souvenirs. The basement contains fishmongers, vegetables stalls, and a few specialized butcher shops.

Inside the Great Market Hall.
Inside the Great Market Hall.

Both St. Lawrence Market and the Great Market Hall are amazing indoor markets to explore, browse or buy and savour fresh food.

Now that we’ve got our fresh pastries from the market, let me tell you about my upcoming guest post and my blog party wondering.

2. Guest Post

I’m excited to share my guest post titled 21 Quick Ideas To Find Calm in 2021 on Min’s Write of the Middle blog on February 8, Brisbane time, in Australia. Min is passionate about health and well-being, self-investment, and mindfulness. Her Gems of Zen series is about lifestyle choices to achieve a sense of Zen.

I’ve known Min in the blog world for some time now as we both link up with some of the same blog parties. I’d like to thank Min for the opportunity to share my ideas on her blog. It’s cool that my blogging voice gets to travel to Australia before I visit the country IRL. See how blog parties open doors to new adventures?

3. What Attracts You to A Blog Party?

Coffee Share party #4 was well-attended with 35 bloggers. Thank you for your participation! Now that we’ve had four blog parties in January, I wonder what attracts bloggers to a blog link-up. Is it simply a nice place to hang out with other bloggers or is there more that attracts you to it? Such as:

  • The blogs at the link-up.
  • The dates and time when the link-up is open.
  • The new visitors and comments that you receive.
  • The reciprocity among participants: You visit a blog, leave a comment, and the blogger visits your blog.
  • By word of mouth from a blogger you follow.
  • The host’s responsiveness to reply to comments on his/ her blog and leave comments on your blog.

Perhaps the best blog parties are those that keep bringing you back.

Your turn

I’d love to hear your comments on:

  1. The best indoor markets.
  2. Writing guest post.
  3. What attracts you to a blog link-up/ party.

Linking with Life This Week, The Weekly Smile, Thursday Doors.

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129 thoughts on “The Best Markets and Blog Parties

  1. leannelc February 5, 2021 / 8:26 am

    Hi Natalie – those indoor markets look amazing. In answer to your question about what attracts me to blog parties, the answer would be that I prefer parties that attract other bloggers who I can relate to and whose blog posts I’m interested in reading. I don’t do many parties anymore because the reciprocity just isn’t there llke it used to be. Blogging for me is about connection and engagement and I’m only interested in parties where that happens – if people are just dumping and moving on, then it seems a little pointless to participate.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie February 5, 2021 / 9:22 am

      Hi Leanne – Relevant blog content, engagement, and connection are definitely important factors to attract me to a blog party, too. As a host, I try to maintain these factors with the Weekend Coffee Share link-up. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

      Like

  2. Erica/Erika February 5, 2021 / 8:52 am

    Your post looks so nice, bright, fresh and welcoming Natalie. πŸ˜€ The heading photo is great! I have driven by the St. Lawrence Market, yet never stopped in. Wow, about the Great Market Hall. Even though it is big, it looks like a fun place to poke around. I will look for your guest post on Min’s blog on the 8th. I really like a blog party for all the reasons you mentioned. I can only join in on certain weeks, because I want to be able to connect with everyone at the party. On the weeks I do not link up, I still visit the bloggers. You are wonderful, Natalie, with your positive, enthusiastic welcome to everyone.πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie February 5, 2021 / 9:31 am

      Thank you, Erica/ Erika, for your comment about my post. I play with free templates from Canva and post different photos because I like variety and colours. St. Lawrence Market is a fun place to browse and pick up fresh food.

      I understand that you can only join in the blog party on certain weeks. There are lots of interesting things to do aside from blog parties, and not enough time to do them all πŸ™‚ I always appreciate your encouragement and support. You’re a true gem and amazing blogger friend.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Erica/Erika February 5, 2021 / 12:07 pm

        Interesting how you mention the photos, Natalie. I am not happy how my photos turned out in my last post. Re: advice I received, I generally use the new editor and go back and forth between Classic and New to set up photos and captions. My preview looks different than my published. I will play around with this. I also like playing with Canva. Thanks for your kind words. ❀️

        Liked by 1 person

        • Natalie February 5, 2021 / 1:11 pm

          Erica/ Erika, I used a Canva template for the square photo at the top of this post. I use the block editor exclusively for all my blog posts and just insert my photos where I want them. My preview and published versions are the same. There is always something new to discover during the blogging process and that’s good for our brain πŸ™‚

          Liked by 2 people

          • Erica/Erika February 5, 2021 / 7:22 pm

            Thanks Natalie, I suspect now it is where I place my captions/descriptions of the photos. I don’t like the words on top of the photo. I will make it work better in future. I sometimes make things more difficult than necessary. You have given me hope. lol πŸ™‚

            Like

            • Natalie February 5, 2021 / 7:29 pm

              LOL, I’m less dedicated to formatting my photos and blog posts. I use the free templates whenever and wherever I can, and accept the “that’s good enough for me”.

              Liked by 1 person

  3. Jill Weatherholt February 5, 2021 / 10:32 am

    The indoor markets look incredible. I love your photos, Natalie! I could spend hours inside. They reminded me of a similar market place in Baltimore, Maryland at the inner harbor. What’s a party without a lot of good conversation! Have a great weekend!

    Like

    • Natalie February 5, 2021 / 11:13 am

      Jill, You said it so succinctly “What’s a party without a lot of good conversation!”. I agree. I haven’t been to the market place in Baltimore. Now that I think about the markets in the US East Coast, the Reading Terminal Market in Philadelphia and Faneuil Hal market place in Boston are incredible, too. Have a wonderful weekend!

      Like

  4. trentpmcd February 5, 2021 / 10:35 am

    That market looks great! As a kid, we went to the West Side Market in Cleveland all of the time. I know it is still there, but I haven’t been there since I was in elementary school… More recently, I went to the market in Philadelphia (I don’t remember the name). It is a great place!
    I have done guest posts and enjoy doing them. Usually it is pretty much for promotion. I allow bloggers to do guest posts on my blog, but admit that it hasn’t happened often (a handful of times, usually part of a “blog hop”). I should get more on, but…
    As to link-ups (I think of blog parties as one-offs, but that may just be me…) Most of the link-ups that I do are writing challenges. To me, they are fun. They help me sharpen my skill. It’s very interesting to see what others have come up with. And it is nice to get feedback. I have come up with some of my best ideas from the challenges…
    I do like the more social kind as well, but don’t participate in many. As to the coffee share, I first did it in August 2014 when it was a one off. A small group (a brother and sister team at first, then one or two others) did a share every week and opened it up as a one-off “blog party”. It was so successful, that they made it into a weekly link-up. I joined the linkup in October of 2014. At that time I shared almost nothing about my personal life on the blog. The coffee share was my outlet for that side. And, in ways, that continues to be it. I do write some personal posts, and the Weekly Smile has made me open up that side even more, but the coffee share is the place where I just chat about me.
    I was shocked to discover how social blogging was. I am social on more “business” type of posts, and on other people’s “business” type posts, but the coffee shares are one place that is almost 100% social. As i said, i do participate in the occasional one-off type of blog party, which are nice social events, but the coffee share is the main outlet. And it is a nice community. I belong to a few blogging communities, with a lot of overlap between the groups, and like them all, but there is something about the constantly evolving coffee share group πŸ™‚

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    • Natalie February 5, 2021 / 11:34 am

      Trent, Yes, the Reading Terminal Market in Philadelphia is a great place. Your comment reminded me of my visits to that market and Faneuil Hall market place in Boston. I usually go to the main market in each city I visit.

      I seldom write guest posts on other blogs: 5 times in 4 years of blogging, and they’re all for bloggers that I’ve been conversing with for a while and on topics that come from my personal experience.

      I agree with you that blog challenges are fun and they sharpen our skills. I started joining photo challenges. They make me look at things differently and stretch my creativity.

      I want to thank you for the history of Weekend Coffee Share. I joined about a year ago when Alli was hosting and had no idea how the weekly link-up started. I wonder if the original coffee share bloggers are still blogging. I’m glad you’re participating in the weekly coffee share and sharing about you with us.

      Liked by 1 person

      • trentpmcd February 5, 2021 / 1:09 pm

        Yes, that’s it, the Reading Terminal Market. I love Faneuil Hall, but it is very different, mostly prepared food. I’ve been to an open air market close to it that was nice.
        I might put a little history into my chat tomorrow morning…

        Like

        • Natalie February 5, 2021 / 1:26 pm

          The Reading Terminal Market is a “real” market with fresh produce from farms and market stalls. The food there was pretty good and reasonably priced, too.

          Liked by 1 person

          • trentpmcd February 5, 2021 / 7:02 pm

            Yes, that was what I liked about it and the market in Cleveland. And though I love Faneuil Hall and Quincy market (I live close to Boston), they aren’t the same.

            Like

  5. Laurie February 5, 2021 / 11:50 am

    Thank you for sharing the photos of St. Lawrence Market. I am going to show it to my hubby, who loves architecture. I can’t wait until we can travel again so we can visit some of the places I see in blogs, including yours. Toronto is easily driveable for us. there is a farmer’s market (Central Market in Lancaster, PA) near us that was built in 1889 and is also very beautiful. If you ever visit, I would be happy to take you there.

    I think what attracts me to blog parties is the community that each one develops. I try to think whether my posts would fit in or not. I am enjoying this new addition of yours very much. There are a lot of posts I like to read and I know many of the bloggers from other blog parties. And I have made some new friends too! Thank you for hosting.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie February 5, 2021 / 1:36 pm

      Thank you, Laurie, for your kind offer to take me to the market in Lancaster. Built in 1889, it would have a lot of history and interesting architecture. I look forward to the day when it’s safe and open to travel again. St. Lawrence Market and its neighbourhood are great for browsing, eating, people watching, strolling, etc.

      Thank you also for sharing your thoughts on blog parties and this link-up. I’m glad to hear you’re enjoying Weekend Coffee Share and have met existing and new friends in this space. That’s what I hope to facilitate every weekend.

      Like

  6. Ally Bean February 5, 2021 / 12:31 pm

    I’m glad that your blog link-up is a success. It can be fun to meet people through them. I know I have.

    After you started this I went back into my blog archives and discovered that before Alli it was Diana at Part-Time Monster who hosted this event. That was in 2015. In other words, you’ve inherited something a long time in the making– and varied as the people who have hosted it. Cool, huh?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie February 5, 2021 / 1:41 pm

      Oh wow, Ally, thank you for looking up your blog archives and sharing another piece of the Coffee Share history. That’s really cool to know. I looked up Diana at Part-Time Monster. Her blog is there with infrequent posts. I may send her a message to say hi and invite her to join the link-up.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. msomerville2014 February 5, 2021 / 12:39 pm

    Hi Natalie, I don’t travel around much, but the first place I thought of was the Market at Inner Harbor in Baltimore, MD. I haven’t been there in years, but the sights and the smells were wonderful. I think all of the reasons for participating in link parties you mentioned are true. I have met and connected with new people just in the last 3 weekend Coffee Shares. Time is a factor. Erica/Erika amazes me with her dedication. I have yet to read every post, but in every party I participate in I try to read and comment on between 6-8 and share as much as I can. there are some posts I read and appreciate but would not necessarily be appropriate on my FB page but I try to share 3, including the host’s as that is usually encouraged. If I have misunderstood the etiquette someone please tell me. I don’t want to be a drop and run bloggeor(: Also, interest is important too, my writing would not appeal to everyone, and vice versa, but boy, what a joy blogging has been and continues to be for me. It is the community connection most especially and the many things I have learned from others. Thanks for hosting. Blessings, Michele

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie February 5, 2021 / 1:53 pm

      Hi Michele, I was in Baltimore a long time ago and the weather that weekend was stormy so I didn’t get to see the market. I hope for a next time.

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts on blogging and the Weekend Coffee Share link-up. I’m glad you’ve enjoyed both and have made new blogging connections. I greatly appreciate your participation and like reading your posts.

      I understand time is a factor and don’t expect everyone to read every post or comment just for the sake of commenting or to share on social media. Some Coffee Share participants have a day job, young family, etc. and we all have other commitments. As long as each of us makes a sincere effort to read and comment, our collective efforts will make the Weekend Coffee Share worth returning.

      Liked by 1 person

      • msomerville2014 February 5, 2021 / 2:16 pm

        Thanks very much Natalie. My “weekend work” and the coffee share are concurrent, but worth making time for both. It helps to not have to read everything. I don’t always read responses to posts, yet there can be a real richness there. Depending on your interests, there is so much to see at Inner Harbor. It has been years, as I said, but the National Aquarium is there and also the Science Center. When my step children visited every summer, it was a great place to take 5 pre-teens, early teens. Our “five” My three and his two were 9-12 years old when we got married! Also the USS Constitution was docked there, so lots to see. Though sadly, not inexpensive and there is a large zoon in Baltimore too, not very far from Inner Harbor. Blessings, and thanks again, Michele

        Like

        • Natalie February 5, 2021 / 5:51 pm

          Thank you, Michele, for the info on Inner Harbor. All the major US cities along the Eastern seaboard are interesting to visit, so much history and lots of things to see and do.

          Liked by 1 person

  8. rawsonjl February 5, 2021 / 3:02 pm

    The only indoor market I know about near us is Faneuil Hall in Boston. My husband and I used to go there to see comedy shows on the top floor.

    Like

    • Natalie February 5, 2021 / 5:53 pm

      Joanne, Faneuil Hall in Boston is very nice. I visited Boston a few times and liked the city.

      Like

  9. Jo February 5, 2021 / 4:34 pm

    I love a good indoor market – and will seek them out. Melbourne has 3 really good ones, but the ones that stick out for me from travels are the markets in Lyon and Dijon in France. I’ll link something up over the weekend.

    Like

    • Natalie February 5, 2021 / 5:56 pm

      Jo, Yes, Lyon and Dijon, the centres of gastronomy in France. Amazing country, amazing cities. I look forward to your post at the link-up.

      Like

  10. Dan Antion February 5, 2021 / 4:38 pm

    The door from St. Lawrence Market is amazing, Natalie. I like that you compared it and showed us one from another country. I love big indoor markets,. We don’t have one around here, but I’ve been to ones in other cities and I always enjoy looking around.

    As for blog parties – I love the conversations, the shared experience and meeting new people. Guest posts…well, I’ve been burned. I am very cautious.

    Like

    • Natalie February 5, 2021 / 6:02 pm

      Dan, These two markets have striking similarities. They’re both big indoor markets, really great for browsing and buying fresh food at reasonable prices.

      I’m curious about your guest post “burnt” experience. If you’ve written about it, please let me know the link so I can learn from it. I seldom write guest posts, only 5 in 4 years, and for bloggers I trust.

      Like

      • Dan Antion February 5, 2021 / 6:16 pm

        I haven’t written about it. There were two, when I had my technical blogs. One was when I let someone do their own post, and they took a very different path than what we had agreed upon. It wasn’t offensive, but it was critical of some people I would have not chosen to offend. The other was a guest post I wrote. It was all fine, but the blogger changed directions later and I found myself attached to a blog I was no longer fond of.

        I should have been more careful in the first instance. I should have insisted on reviewing the material first. In the second case, I had no way of knowing what might happen.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Natalie February 5, 2021 / 6:26 pm

          Oh, I would be burnt under those circumstances, too. For the guest posts I wrote, the host bloggers sent me the preview versions. The change of blog direction is something I haven’t thought of. Thank you, Dan, for sharing your experiences.

          Liked by 2 people

  11. midlifestylist February 5, 2021 / 5:28 pm

    Hi Natalie, we have a market on the Gold Coast that is indoor/outdoor, the Carrara Markets. It’s been around for a long time. We also have many outdoor markets.

    I love linkups and share parties that attract similar bloggers to me. I’ve tried some that have blogs that don’t interest me so I move on. I love the community of bloggers. My trouble is time. Like many others, you need to commit a fair bit of time to reading and sharing. But it’s a great way to get readers to your own blog.

    Thanks for hosting the linkup, regards Christina

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie February 5, 2021 / 6:07 pm

      Hi Christina, The Carrara Markets sound great. We have outdoor farmers’ markets from late May to October here but they’re not as big as St. Lawrence Market which also holds farmers’ market on Saturdays.

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts on blog parties. I’m also selective with which blog parties to join and stay. Time is a factor for sure.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Janis @ RetirementallyChallenged.com February 5, 2021 / 5:34 pm

    I remember spending quite a few hours enjoying the St. Lawrence Market when we were in Toronto several years ago. We have a lovely public market (mostly food oriented) not too far away but I have no idea if it has stayed open during Covid… I sure hope so. Some of my favorite indoor markets are those we’ve found in Mexico. Such a feast for the eyes and nose!

    Like

    • Natalie February 5, 2021 / 6:13 pm

      Janis, St. Lawrence Market is open with revised hours and covid-19 safety measures in place. Mexico seems to have a central market in every town that I’ve visited. The central markets are fun places to browse and to buy fresh and inexpensive food.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Jennifer Jones February 5, 2021 / 5:34 pm

    Hi Natalie I missed your guest post on Min’s blog but will pop over today. What attracts me to blog parties is the connection with other bloggers. I do enjoy reading posts from around the world. I only participate in a few blog parties but that is mainly due to time constraints. I like to be able to read and share participating blogs. Very much enjoying #weekendcoffeeshare

    Like

    • Natalie February 5, 2021 / 6:18 pm

      Hi Jennifer, My guest post goes live on February 8th so you haven’t missed it yet. I’m glad you’re enjoying our international Weekend Coffee Share blog party. Like you, I participate in just a few blog parties due to time constraints. I’m also selective about blog “genre” at the party.

      Like

  14. Sue from Women Living Well After 50 February 5, 2021 / 6:50 pm

    Hi Natalie, great to see you as a guest over at Min’s blog I look forward to reading your thoughts on finding calm. I love the Markets of Europe and also the St Lawrence Markets complex looks huge. Thanks for the opportunity to link up at this week’s #weekendcoffeeshare. Have a great weekend. x

    Like

    • Natalie February 5, 2021 / 7:19 pm

      Hi Sue, After my guest post goes live on Min’s blog, I’d love to hear your comments. Thank you for linking up. Have a wonderful weekend!

      Like

  15. Denyse Whelan Blogs February 5, 2021 / 6:51 pm

    Being in a regional area now we tend to have only some outdoor food markets and with COVID even those were cancelled. However, when I lived in Sydney I certainly visited places like Paddys Markets and Parklea Markets. Your city has a great deal to offer. I think I ticked all those boxes about being a blogger who has a link up party herself. I now only share where the host, and at least a couple of commenters, do read and comment. Great points I hope others read too. See you Monday for #lifethisweek!
    Denyse

    Like

    • Natalie February 5, 2021 / 7:23 pm

      Denyse, Blog parties where the host and participant bloggers take time to read and comment give a sense of a caring community. I think we both aim for that. Have a wonderful weekend! See you soon.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Lizl Bennefeld February 5, 2021 / 10:18 pm

    I have been part of the Weekend Coffee Share community since sometime early in 2015. In October of that year, I started a blog on WordPress specifically for my Coffee Share posts. I have enjoyed the camaraderie in the group in general and became friends with many, over the years. As life has changed (health aging, death of parents, retirement, &c.) , my participation has varied, but I have always tried to keep up with the reading. I like getting to know people in-depth, since the Internet is my primary source of people contact. So many, over the years, have died, moved away, moved on…

    The only “food market” I can think of is the organic and specialty foods store, which my mother and I visited since the early 70s, and then when I married in ’92. The owner and his wife were about my age. Finally, the smoke from the wood stove defeated me. There are good selections in the local groceries, which started out as locally owned and maintain good quality. Also the butcher shop near where I used to live.

    The days that I have for writing my Weekend Coffee Share post are/were Fridays and Mondays. Between Saturday’s online courses (occasional), regular Zoom social and co-working meetings, and Sunday Meetings for Worship , socializing, and Business, and the periodic book studies, and catching up with family groupings scattered from Connecticut to southern California. Since the parents died, a few years ago, we’re trying to form and maintain better communications. My sister (in Conn.) and I have similar health problems, traveling to meet is no longer possible.

    I have not thought about writing guest posts. I did in the past have poems published, but I decided that the submission processes ate up too much writing time. πŸ˜€ Getting to the age where really want to go where the joy is.

    Appreciating your enthusiasm and your wonderful posts. So happy that you were able to step in and keep the lines open!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie February 6, 2021 / 9:36 am

      Thank you, Lizl, for sharing your experience with the Weekend Coffee Share link-up since 2015. I’m glad that you’ve made and stayed friends with some of the Coffee Share bloggers over the years, and that the dates of the Weekend Coffee Share link-up work with your schedule. I learned a bit more about the history of this link-up from your comment, too.

      I hear you when you say “go where the joy is”. To be able to write freely is a great pleasure in life. This is one of the reasons I write an ad-free and award-free blog. I’ve written guest posts to share my ideas and experiences on matters that I care about and have only done it five times in four years for blogs that I’ve read for a while. I think of my guest posts as my way of giving back to the blogging community.

      Thanks again for your continued participation at the Weekend Coffee Share link-up. Have a great weekend!

      Liked by 2 people

  17. Sagittarius Viking February 6, 2021 / 2:30 am

    Hi Natalie, great coffee share!

    I do not visit indoor markets so often. St. Lawrence Market looks fabulous!
    I’ve been to a few that I’ve really enjoyed. Oxbow Market in Napa (CA) https://oxbowpublicmarket.com. Chania market, Crete (Greece) is a favourite and considered one of the best in Europe. And then there is one in Gothenburg that I like http://www.storasaluhallen.se (I actually worked at a bakery at the one in Gothenburg for a while. Some 20+ years ago.)

    I think both guest posts and link parties are great opportunities to get your blog out there. When I have time off I participate in more photo linkups, when I have time to be out there taking photos and exchange inspiration with other photographers. Now when I work full time I cannot participate in as many blogging events as I would like. The coffee share is interesting, I feel like it is talking to old friends sort of. I avoid link parties without content that interest me; fashion, shopping etc.

    Have a great weekend Natalie πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie February 6, 2021 / 9:46 am

      Thank you, Maria, for your comment and for your continued participation at the Weekend Coffee Share link-up. I’m thrilled to have blogging voices from different countries and Sweden has been one of my favourite countries.

      The three markets that you mentioned sound fabulous. Like you, I avoid link parties that focus on fashion, shopping, etc. I like how bloggers share a glimpse of their daily life at the Weekend Coffee Share link-up. Have a wonderful weekend!

      Liked by 2 people

      • Sagittarius Viking February 6, 2021 / 9:54 am

        Peoples daily life’s are fascinating indeed, especially if they are ordinary people struggling with he same challenges that I am. LOL.

        Liked by 1 person

  18. Debbie February 6, 2021 / 5:32 am

    Hi Natalie, I always learn something from your posts and these markets looks great. I went to some indoor markets in Budapest and I think it’s the one you mentioned in your post, how amazing that we’ve both been there! The age of some of these markets astounds me, as well as the size and architecture. So much history!

    Link parties are fun but only of others reciprocate as the host requests. I always try to visit as many posts as I can and usually leave a comment if I’ve something to add. As others have said before, time is mainly the reason I don’t join too many, and I have learnt to only participate if the topics interest me. The community feel and response is part of why I enjoy blogging so much. Thank you for the opportunity to share and meet others.

    Like

    • Natalie February 6, 2021 / 1:30 pm

      Hi Debbie, Yes, the longevity of these markets, their sizes and architecture are amazing. So cool that we’ve both been to the Central Market in Budapest.

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts on link parties and for linking up with Weekend Coffee Share. The blog topics, comments, and conversations truly make blogging interesting and rewarding.

      Liked by 1 person

  19. Molly Totoro February 6, 2021 / 9:42 am

    As several have already mentioned, I join blog parties for social connection. From past experience, I’ve learned not all blog parties are created the same πŸ™‚ I like the feel of a more “intimate” party with fewer attendees who are willing to share from the heart. At this retirement time of life, I’m looking to connect with others who are navigating these same waters. I think through sharing our experiences, we can learn from one another and encourage each other on the journey. I rediscovered your blog from #MLSTL days and I’m glad to see you are offering a similar connection. I look forward to engaging more with all the participants.

    Like

    • Natalie February 6, 2021 / 1:37 pm

      Welcome, Molly, to Weekend Coffee Share! I agree with you that not all blog parties are created the same. I believe you’re in good company with this link-up. There are several bloggers who are participating and they’re at the retirement time of life. The attendance to the Coffee Share link up usually starts gradually on Friday then builds up through Saturday and Sunday. Feel free to visit different blogs in the link up to meet new and known friends. Thank you for linking up with us.

      Like

  20. SadiRose February 6, 2021 / 9:49 am

    I am attracted to the blog parties because it is an introverts way to feel social. At least for me. I love the markets and your photographs this week. Wonderful as always. Thanks for hosting again.

    Like

    • Natalie February 6, 2021 / 1:39 pm

      SadiRose, Excellent point about introverts’ way to feel social at blog parties. Many bloggers are introverts. I’m glad you like the markets and my photos. Thank you for joining in the conversation.

      Liked by 1 person

  21. Jackie February 6, 2021 / 10:04 am

    I am attracted to blog parties to meet other bloggers with like interests. Photo challenges interest me as well. I love to see what other people are cooking.
    St. Lawrence Market is a favourite of mine, I often go there with my camera and then buy too much to carry!!!
    I love the markets in Asia, so many exotic things.

    Like

    • Natalie February 6, 2021 / 1:44 pm

      Jackie, So many goodies to browse and buy at St. Lawrence Market. I know what you mean by buying too much to carry. The markets in Asia are great, too. There was one that I went to in Bangkok, Thailand where the market was on small boats on a river.

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts on blog parties and for joining us at Weekend Coffee Share.

      Like

  22. Writing Sparkle February 6, 2021 / 10:34 am

    I know that I used to go to a market often with my mother but I was so young I can’t recall the name. I do wonder though if it was the St Lawrence Market. It was a drive for us and it was a huge market so maybe…

    My first post shared with The Weekend Coffee Share was in April of 2016. I had only been blogging for a few months and I was looking for great blogs to follow, places to share my blog and just connection with other bloggers. The Weekend Coffee Share offered all those things and all these years later I still love participating.

    Thanks Natalie, have a great weekend!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie February 6, 2021 / 1:48 pm

      Shari, If it’s a huge market in downtown Toronto, it’s likely St. Lawrence Market. Thank you for sharing your experience and history with Weekend Coffee Share. I’m glad you still love participating in the link up. The Coffee Share community is wonderful. Its longevity speaks volume. Have a great weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  23. Retirement Reflections February 6, 2021 / 12:31 pm

    Hi, Natalie – I love St. Laurence Market but haven’t been there for years. Thank you for sharing it with us. Thank you also for all of the work that you do hosting this Coffee Share. I greatly enjoy following along.

    Like

    • Natalie February 6, 2021 / 1:50 pm

      Hi Donna, We’ll need to make a trip to St Lawrence Market when you visit Toronto. Thank you for following along my hosting Weekend Coffee Share. I’m learning more about its history from the comments today.

      Like

  24. smkelly8 February 6, 2021 / 2:40 pm

    The link party is already closed. It’s Saturday here in the US. Are you in Australia or Asia?

    Like

    • smkelly8 February 6, 2021 / 2:44 pm

      Now it worked. Not sure what went wrong before.

      I love your indoor market photos.

      Like

      • Natalie February 6, 2021 / 5:56 pm

        Glad the link worked and you like my market photos. Plan B is to leave the URL to your post in a comment on my blog.

        Liked by 1 person

  25. Patrick Weseman February 6, 2021 / 11:44 pm

    Those indoor markets look so very cool. I would love to spend a day there. I like link parties were there is a cool vibe. A lot of different posts that I can look at and learn from.

    Thanks for hosting and I hope that you have a wonderful week.

    Like

  26. csuhpat1 February 6, 2021 / 11:44 pm

    Those indoor markets look so very cool. I would love to spend a day there. I like link parties were there is a cool vibe. A lot of different posts that I can look at and learn from.

    Thanks for hosting and I hope that you have a wonderful week.

    Like

    • Natalie February 7, 2021 / 9:25 am

      Patrick, Both of the above markets would keep you entertained and your camera busy for several hours, especially if you visit for the first time.

      Thank you for sharing what type of link parties you like. I think Weekend Coffee Share link up is cool and the blogs are diverse πŸ™‚

      BTW, I got your comment from your Blogger account but it went to the Spam folder. Thank you for persevering and writing again from your WordPress account. Have a great weekend!

      Like

  27. Astrid February 7, 2021 / 4:12 am

    Great post! I love linky parties, but particularly those that bloggers join in on whose content I find interesting. I also really love specific theme blog parties, such as yours.

    Like

    • Natalie February 7, 2021 / 9:27 am

      Thank you, Astrid, for sharing your preferences for blog parties. Interesting blog content is king, isn’t it? I’m glad you love Weekend Coffee Share. Have a great weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  28. robertawrites235681907 February 7, 2021 / 4:16 am

    Hi Natalie, thank you for more lovely Toronto pictures. I find them very interesting. I do a lot of guest posts and enjoy meeting new bloggers. I often participate in blog parties too. This time of year is very busy work wise for me so I don’t always have time to read the posts and participate in this sort of activity.

    Like

    • Natalie February 7, 2021 / 9:43 am

      Roberta, I’m glad you find my photos of Toronto interesting because I have more to share in my future blogs πŸ™‚

      Good for you to do a lot of guest posts. Do you do them only for your blogger friends or any blog that has open invitation for guest posts? I find that I have ideas for guest posts but not enough time to formulate them into a cohesive post.

      Do you gravitate towards certain types of blog parties? I’ve participated in a handful of blog parties and have started to step away from the ones that I don’t find satisfying.

      Liked by 1 person

      • robertawrites235681907 February 7, 2021 / 12:34 pm

        Hi Natalie, I love pictures of interesting places so I will enjoy seeing more photographs of Toronto. I recently read a book about the floathouses in Victoria and I found it fascinating. The author previously lived in Toronto and changed her life.

        I do a lot of guest posts. Quite often they are due to invitations from blogging friends I know well, but sometimes I get invites from less well known bloggers to me. I don’t mind. I love people and everything about their lives interests me so I can usually accommodate with a post about places I’ve visited, my writing, my poetry, or even my job.

        If I see a blog party, I often join in. I like to help support other bloggers. I try to remember to pop back and visit other bloggers who’ve left links. I do my best to celebrate the blogging community in the time I have available for blogging.

        Like

        • Natalie February 7, 2021 / 4:25 pm

          Wow, Roberta, you’re an avid writer and blogger. Your willingness to support other bloggers is amazing. I’m glad to have met you via Thursday Doors photo challenge.

          I visited the floating houses in Fisherman’s Wharf in Victoria. They’re very pretty and colourful. Victoria is a picturesque city and its location right by the sea is incredible.

          Liked by 1 person

          • robertawrites235681907 February 8, 2021 / 1:04 pm

            I have heard Victoria is beautiful. The pictures in the book I read were lovely. I am also glad we have met up, Natalie.

            Like

  29. Susanne February 7, 2021 / 4:22 am

    Hi Natalie, I love a good food market!! Yours looks similar to the one we have in Cork city, which is called the Old English market, and opened in 1788. I really miss going there! I wish there was something similar here in rural Cork but at least we have the butcher’s shops, the smaller indie shops and the farmer’s markets and that’s definitely good enough, especially now during the pandemic.
    I enjoy blog parties because it’s a nice way to find new blogs to read and to connect with other bloggers. It has to be a correctly “themed” blog party though, that fits with what you are interested in and the kind of people you are likely to have something common with.

    Like

    • Natalie February 7, 2021 / 9:55 am

      Hi Susanne – The farmers’ market and shops you have in rural Cork sound good. My stay in Cork was brief but I remember spending time walking through the town centre and to the market. I may look through my photo archives to recall my visit.

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts on blog parties. The theme of the party and who participates in it make a big difference to the overall experience. I’m glad you choose to join the Weekend Coffee Share link up. I hope it continues to be a satisfying experience for you.

      Like

  30. Suzanne@PictureRetirement February 7, 2021 / 9:09 am

    Hi Natalie, I love visiting markets when we travel since they are not commonplace in the US. The only one I have ever visited here is the Reading Terminal Market in Philadelphia. It is pretty spectacular.

    Congratulations on writing a guest post for Min’s blog. I was fortunate to have done that with her a while back. I enjoy writing guest posts when the blogger has a specific lean, or subject that they want to share with their readers through another’s perspective. As far as hosting a guest author, I will likely not do that. I love promoting good blogs and I often give a shout-out, recommendations, or link back to specific posts that I think will interest my readers.

    Why link-up parties? First, it is an opportunity to reach new readers who may be interested in my blog. Second, it is an opportunity to discover new blogs that I may find interesting. It’s a win/win for all when new connections have a chance to take hold and grow. I won’t always link-up, but I will scroll through those who have and read what they have to say. I fully read, and eventually ‘follow’ blogs that have engaging content and great photographs. Visually appealing Blogs that inspire, motivate and teach are high on my list of keepers.

    Thanks again for making this link-up possible. I have sorely missed #MLSTL

    Like

    • Natalie February 7, 2021 / 10:19 am

      Hi Suzanne, Yes, the Reading Terminal Market in Philadelphia is amazing. I was in Philadelphia a few years ago and went to that market to browse and have lunches. It’s the type of market that gives wonderful sensory experience and many photo opportunities.

      You’re really good at promoting good blogs and give a shout-out in your posts. I remember reading your guest post on Min’s blog, too. I seldom write guest posts and so far have written just for bloggers I’ve read for a while. The one I wrote for Min’s blog is without me overthinking. Otherwise, it would never leave my desktop πŸ™‚

      I hear you about missing #MLSTL. When it was about to end, if I recall correctly, there wasn’t any offer for anyone to pick up the baton so I didn’t think of volunteering to host. I hope you find some of the blogs you like at the Weekend Coffee Share link-up. I’m glad you join because I see your blog as a gem, both in content and photos, to be discovered by more readers. Thank you for joining in the conversation.

      Liked by 1 person

  31. Antoinette Truglio Martin February 7, 2021 / 12:33 pm

    I think the best indoor market I went to was in the Chelsea Market in NYC. The spice vendor, bakeries and amazing olives, pickles and cheeses are all there.
    I love this coffee share because it gives me writing deadlines and removes me from the lists of have-to-get-writing-to-dos for a little while and I get to virtually meet amazing writers.. So, thank you Natalie.

    Like

    • Natalie February 7, 2021 / 4:11 pm

      Antoinette, Yes, Chelsea Market in NYC is great. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on the Weekend Coffee Share link-up. It’s true that the link-up is time-bound (every weekend) so we’d better get on with our writing if we want to participate. The Coffee Share community has been wonderful. Thank you for your continued participation.

      Like

  32. Regina Martins February 7, 2021 / 12:39 pm

    Gorgeous photos and story. I enjoy the weekend coffee share because of the supportive bloggers that participate. They are so much fun. I love reading everyone else’s coffee shares.

    Like

    • Natalie February 7, 2021 / 4:16 pm

      Thank you, Regina, for sharing what you love about the Weekend Coffee Share link-up and for your continued participation. I’ve learned more about the history of this link-up from the comments I receive on this post. I’m glad you like my photos and story. I enjoy reading everyone’s coffee share, too.

      Liked by 1 person

  33. Min Write of the Middle February 7, 2021 / 5:37 pm

    Hi Natalie, I love those buildings and I can see the similarities too! I love markets of all kinds including indoor ones. The first indoor market that comes to mind for me is the Victoria Markets in Melbourne. They are A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. and I love to go there whenever I’m in Melbourne. So glad to see your mention of your guest post on my blog. Thank you so much for participating. I really appreciate it. It’s a wonderful post and I’m sure many people will get some great ideas from it. Have a great week!

    Like

    • Natalie February 7, 2021 / 6:21 pm

      Hi Min, Victoria Markets sound like a must-see in Melbourne. I hope to visit Melbourne one day.

      Thanks again for having me on your blog and for linking with Weekend Coffee Share. Have a wonderful week!

      Like

  34. Thistles and Kiwis February 7, 2021 / 7:51 pm

    Like Min above, the first indoor market that springs to mind is Victoria Market in Melbourne. Ostermalms Saluhall in Stockholm is interesting, and I remember one I went to in Zaragoza many years ago with hams hanging everywhere. And I loved the one on Granville Island In Vancouver.

    Like

    • Natalie February 7, 2021 / 8:14 pm

      Great to have two votes for Victoria Market in Melbourne and Saluhall in Sweden. Yes, I love Granville Island Public Market in Vancouver. Spanish ham is delicious and no wonder Zaragoza has them hanging everywhere. I saw a lot of salami and paprika in the Central Market in Budapest. These local markets are wonderful to experience the local foods. Thank you for joining the Weekend Coffee Share link up.

      Like

  35. Rowena February 8, 2021 / 12:06 am

    Hi Natalie,
    Like Trent, I’ve been doing the Weekend Coffee Share since around 2014 and have been chatting with Trent all that time. I particularly like the Weekend Coffee Share because I like to connect with people around the world and hear about their everyday lives, and visit a whole range of places virtually, which I’ll probably never get to in person.. I also have periods where I’m not well, and so it becomes my social outlet. This has been true during covid as well. I also mainly do writing challenges on the blog. I’ve done one guest post over the years. My blog is now well-established, and I’m no longer concerned about traffic and stats, and am focusing on writing a series of books about WWI. The one thing I’ve found for awhile with the Weekend Coffee Share is that there are contributions that don’t stick to the theme and as such should be deleted. It’s always had the same format and is supposed to be written like you’re having coffee together. I guess in this sense I wouldn’t see it so much as a blog “party” as such, and more reflective. Anyway, that’s how I try to write my posts. I can struggle to read many posts some weeks but my intentions are good. I have teenagers at home, and life is unpredictable.
    Thanks so much for keeping it going. You’re doing a great job.
    Best wishes,
    Rowena

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie February 8, 2021 / 10:27 am

      Thank you, Rowena, for your comment and encouragement. I’m glad Trent and you are still blogging to give me the history of Weekend Coffee Share since 2014.

      Social connections and outlets from blogging are beneficial to our health, especially during hard times like the covid-19 pandemic. I greatly appreciate your participation in the link-up as I know you have teenagers at home and you’re working on your writing goals. Have a great week ahead!

      Liked by 2 people

      • Rowena February 8, 2021 / 10:32 am

        Thanks very much, Natalie. Hope you have a great week too and keep up the great work!

        Like

  36. Deborah February 8, 2021 / 12:07 am

    The only indoor markets I’ve been to have been overseas I think Natalie. Definitely in Italy and (forever ago) when I was in Asia – in Vietnam and Cambodia.

    As for the blog linkups I’m not as organised as I should be at the moment so have been limiting my involvement knowing that reading and commenting on a dozen or so blogs on a Monday is about it for me at the moment.

    Like

    • Natalie February 8, 2021 / 10:34 am

      Deb, Oh yes, the markets in Italy and Vietnam. Different cuisines and foods but both countries offer excellent food choices.

      I understand time is a constraint for everyone. I greatly appreciate whenever you can drop in to comment on my blog. Have a great week ahead!

      Like

  37. Julie February 8, 2021 / 12:38 am

    My favorite indoor food hall t is the one in my city, Los Angeles Grand Central Market. I have not gone all year due to the pandemic but I have placed a few postmates orders to help keep those restaurants afloat. When abroad, I enjoyed going to Pike’s Place in Seattle and Granville Island in Vancouver.

    A few years back I use to invite hobbyist bloggers who worked regular jobs to guest post. I was so tired of seeing my social media feed full of the same people going to exotic places and lunching around like they don’t have real jobs — it was almost becoming toxic where I knew people wanted to aspire to be that. Some people pursued the influencer life but lost a lot of money in the process. My spotlighting on hobbyist bloggers did better than I expected but after a while, I had a hard time keeping it up.

    Like

    • Natalie February 8, 2021 / 10:50 am

      Julie, How great that you have a grand central market where you live. I’ve been to LA several times but haven’t been to its Grand Central Market so need to fix that next visit. Pike’s Place in Seattle and Granville market in Vancouver are both wonderful places to browse and get good eats.

      Atm, aside from blogging one post per week, I stay away from other social media platforms. I hear you about the toxicity and see how “fake” things can get. I prefer to spend my time on something real and healthy.

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts and linking up with Weekend Coffee Share. I greatly appreciate your participation while you manage a day job and a young family. Have a calm week ahead!

      Like

      • Julie February 8, 2021 / 11:10 pm

        Thank you, Natalie. I think the times I could have spent on social media scrolling have now gone to blogging and commenting on blogs haha.

        Like

        • Natalie February 9, 2021 / 8:10 am

          Julie, if blogging gives you a positive feeling and opportunities for interesting conversations and new friendships, it’s a good sign to stick with it πŸ™‚

          Like

  38. dprastka February 8, 2021 / 1:29 am

    I’m nearing the very end of the weekend and the very near end of your lovely blog post comments! I’ve been reading everyone’s comments (after reading your wonderful post!) and liked many (and was going to just like them all!) Such wonderful participation! ❀️ I read on one comment that there are bloggers that drop and leave, and oh dear, I don’t want to be one of those bloggers. I have trouble in my busy schedule to read all the blog posts each weekend. I’ll try and visit more as it truly is fun to connect. I will do my best! Beautiful market, such rich history!! Thank you for hosting, you are amazing and do a WONDERFUL job! πŸ’–

    Like

    • Natalie February 8, 2021 / 10:56 am

      Diana, The comments have been amazing. Thank you for sharing your thoughts about the link-up and encouraging me with your kind words. I greatly appreciate your participation in the link-up and your sincere connections. Have a calm and beautiful week ahead!

      Liked by 1 person

  39. Sammie @ The Annoyed Thyroid February 8, 2021 / 1:41 am

    Ah this post brings back so many happy (and delicious) memories of our time in Toronto and in particular, St Lawrence Market. I just remember everything being so tasty! And the pierogi from European Delight among many other yummy morsels! As for the blog party, primarily I like to support the host but only like to jump in if I know I have the time to visit other blogs and “circulate.” I hosted a link up for a few years and so I really appreciate the work that goes in behind the scenes so thanks for hosting!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie February 8, 2021 / 11:03 am

      Sammie, You have excellent memories. The perogies, yes! How long was your visit in Toronto? I’m so glad you discovered and enjoyed the good things Toronto has to offer.

      I didn’t know you hosted a link-up for a few years. It’s my first time hosting the weekly Weekend Coffee Share link-up. So far, I find it adds some admin tasks to my blogging. If you have any tip or warning for me, I’m all ears πŸ™‚

      I appreciate your honesty that you only jump in a blog party if you have the time to visit other blogs. Have a great week ahead!

      Like

  40. 3sistersabroad February 8, 2021 / 7:00 pm

    I love markets indoors/outdoors – can take my dogs. Europe has some amazing indoor markets so much food and drink to taste. Im not fond of markets that are bric brac I mean they are ok as long as there is some great local food wine and coffee.

    Like

    • Natalie February 8, 2021 / 9:22 pm

      Bree, Yes, the local markets where locals go, not just tourists, are great to browse and buy local food at reasonable prices. Thank you for dropping by. You’re welcome to join my Weekend Coffee Share link-up any week.

      Liked by 1 person

      • 3sistersabroad February 8, 2021 / 9:24 pm

        Thank you 😊 I was going to then started having issues with laptop. Question is it on what you do the coffee share link or any post I do?

        Like

        • Natalie February 8, 2021 / 9:28 pm

          The topic is open, some bloggers write about their week, others write about what they’re doing or what’s on their mind. It’s like a coffee chat with a friend. Your post can be written on any day then link on weekend (from Friday 8 a.m. to midnight Sunday night Toronto time).

          Liked by 1 person

            • Natalie February 8, 2021 / 9:30 pm

              You’re welcome. Feel free to browse the blogs that linked up this past weekend to give you a sense of the topics. Hope your laptop issues are resolved and you consider joining us this coming weekend.

              Liked by 1 person

              • 3sistersabroad February 8, 2021 / 9:31 pm

                I hope so too Re my lap top thank you I will check them out

                Like

  41. Sanch @ Sanch Writes February 10, 2021 / 3:55 am

    A bit late to comment this week. Lovely photos and tours of Toronto as always – I can’t believe I never visited those markets when I was there. It looks lovely! As for link parties, I like finding new bloggers I could possibly connect with. Keep up the good hosting work! It’s hard to host a link-up!

    Like

    • Natalie February 10, 2021 / 8:21 am

      Thank you, Sanch, for your encouragement about my hosting role. Now there is at least one place you haven’t visited in Toronto. Perhaps next time when it’s safe to travel again. Have a great week!

      Like

  42. Denyse Whelan Blogs February 10, 2021 / 7:33 pm

    Thank you for linking up your blog post today. Next week’s optional prompt is 7/51 Self Care Stories #1. 15 Feb. In this one, I am using the new category in my blog called Ageing Stories because it was a good fit. Look forward to seeing you there too. Denyse.

    Like

    • Natalie February 10, 2021 / 7:39 pm

      Thank you, Denyse. I look forward to seeing you at the link-up.

      Liked by 1 person

  43. Coffeeandcream February 12, 2021 / 9:42 am

    Those indoor markets look great! I have a local one where I live called St. George’s market which I love to visit!

    Like

    • Natalie February 12, 2021 / 10:23 am

      Thank you for your visit and comment. I hopped over to your blog and St. George’s market in Belfast. It looks like a great market, similar in age to the Great Market Hall in Budapest. I hope you consider joining my Weekend Coffee Share link-up any week.

      Liked by 1 person

  44. Jody Scott-Greer February 12, 2021 / 7:59 pm

    WOW! What a stunning market which I would LOVE to explore. There’s nothing better when travelling, than visiting the amazing markets in new locations.

    Like

    • Natalie February 12, 2021 / 8:08 pm

      Jody, Yes, these markets are good places to mingle with local people and buy fresh food at inexpensive prices. I usually go to the local market when I travel to a new location.

      Like

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