Happy Easter Weekend

Hello and welcome to Weekend Coffee Share #65! I’m glad you’re here. Please come on in, help yourself to a cup of coffee, or tea, or hot chocolate at my coffee station and let’s chat.

Week 15/ 52

It was a week of sunny days, periods of showers, and above normal temperatures that reached 18C (64F) on Wednesday afternoon. I’m thinking of good things that happened this week.

1. Friendship

One of my longtime friends lives in the suburbs, about an hour drive from me. She had appointments downtown yesterday so we arranged to meet for coffee. It was a happy reunion because even though we’ve been in touch, we haven’t seen each other for over two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Winter aconites – Yellow is often seen as the universal colour of friendship

2. Garden walks

I took several lovely garden walks this week. In any garden, especially in spring, a walk is a sensory and therapeutic experience. At least, I see flowers, hear bird songs, smell the freshly churned soil, and feel the coolness in the air and the warmth of sunlight.

My neighbourhood looks more and more beautiful every day as we get further into spring. Sunlight, rain, and warmer temperatures have sped up plant growth. I enjoy looking out for early spring flowers in gardens. They are emerging and showing off their cheerful colours.

3. Birding

I saw beautiful red cardinals, American robins, European starlings, and red-winged blackbirds. They were all singing their wonderful bird songs. Toronto is on one of the major bird migration paths so we have many bird species year-round. I feel fortunate to hear the sounds of nature so clearly while living in a big city. I also found four new cute birdhouses.

4. Photography

I went through my pictures taken at Allan Gardens Conservatory and had fun creating an Orchid slideshow. I’ve seen most of these orchid varieties in stores, except the Bell orchid tree from tropical Africa. Their beauty brightens my day and transports me to faraway places. Click on the arrows or swipe to see the images.

5. Books

Three e-books that I requested from the library arrived. They were new releases in January and February 2022. Two of the books are from familiar authors, and one is a debut novel from a new-to-me author. I’m excited to read new books and discover new authors. I love my library’s digital services and the convenience of e-books. I keep track of what I’ve read here.

***

That wraps up Week 15 of 2022. In spite of mixed weather, it was a lovely week. Trees are in bloom, birds are singing, good coffee and new books are waiting. I look forward to a relaxing weekend with my family and Week 16 coming up. I hope you have a wonderful Easter weekend.

How has your week been?

Shared with #CellpicSunday, #Lens-Artist Challenge, #PPAC, #SpringFestival, #ThursdayDoors.

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Toronto Music Garden in Winter

Hello and welcome to Weekend Coffee Share #55! I’m glad you’re here. Please come on in, help yourself to a cup of coffee, or tea, or hot chocolate at my coffee station and let’s chat.

Week 5/52

One of Toronto’s gems is the Toronto Music Garden. I wrote about it here. I love that the garden is open year-round with no entry fee. Its location right by the waterfront and next to Spadina Quay Wetlands also means there are always more plants and urban wildlife to see than what’s already in the garden.

Toronto Music Garden entrance in winter
Toronto Music Garden entrance in winter

This winter I had the pleasure to visit the garden on several occasions, with and without snow. The lack of leaves shows off the beautiful shape of the trees and their branches.

Beautiful tree and its branches.
A beautiful tree and its branches

While walking in the Toronto Music Garden, I discovered four charming birdhouses, watched and listened to many birds. The birds were vocal and quick to hide.

I also watched Danielle Hyde, a multi-disciplinary Indigenous artist, @CoCreation_Art, spray painted a colourful park mural on a storage building at the east end of the garden. The mural reflects the garden surroundings: People, plants, flowers, birds, butterflies, ducks, and water.

North side
North wall
East side
East wall – The door lock is between the two red and purple flowers
South side
South wall – The doors are easier to see at this angle
West side
West wall

I look forward to visiting the Toronto Music Garden again in Spring when many beautiful flowers bloom.

How has your week been?

Shared with #ThursdayDoors, #PPAC34, #SundayStills.

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Spadina Quay Wetlands and Fun List

Hello and welcome to Weekend Coffee Share #20! I’m glad you’re here. Please come on in, help yourself to a cup of coffee, or tea, or hot chocolate at my coffee station and let’s chat.

This past week the weather was glorious, lots of sunshine and blue skies with daytime high reached 27C (81F), felt like 30C (86F) yesterday. Since I’ve been cycling, walking, exploring and having fun with photography most days, I have a backlog of things to write up.

Today’s post is about my walk at the Spadina Quay Wetlands and my Spring fun list update.

Spadina Quay Wetlands

Spadina Quay Wetlands is a gem located in Toronto’s waterfront area. It’s a thriving ecosystem full of plants, birds, butterflies, ducks, and fish. It’s complete with flowering heath plants, poplar trees, flagstone paths and a creek. Aside from nature, there is also art.

1. Birdhouse Sculpture

Artist Anne Roberts designed the Birdhouse sculpture on stilts that was installed in the wetland garden. This sculpture recalls the human activities of the Toronto lakeshore at the turn of the 20th century, with warehouses of the Toronto Electric Company, the corner bank, the Sunnyside Bathing Pavilion and clusters of ice cream parlours and boathouses attracting Toronto residents to the lure of the water.

Birdhouse sculpture by Anne Roberts.
Birdhouse sculpture by Anne Roberts.

When the water level in Toronto Harbour is high, water fills up the small creek where the Birdhouse sculpture is located and it’s not accessible to foot traffic. This spring, since the creek has been dry, I was able to visit the sculpture up close.

A bird flying above the towers on the left.
Can you spot the bird flying above the towers on the left?

2. Bright Birdhouses

While walking around the wetland garden, I found these bright birdhouses. They made me smile.

Which birdhouse would you choose?

3. Gosling sightings

Remember I mentioned Lucy the nesting goose and my previous check-in? Her nest was close to the Spadina Quay Wetlands. She delivered five cute goslings.

It was a delightful walk at the Spadina Quay Wetlands. As an urban dweller, I appreciate this green space and enjoy seeing wildlife in their natural habitat.

Spring Fun List – May Update

Back in March, I wrote a Spring Fun List of things to do while in COVID-19 lockdown. Most of my activities are outdoors or online and follow public health protocols so I’ve been checking off a few items in April.

I’ve recently completed two more items (#3 and #7). Here’s my update and contribution to Leslie’s Spring link-up.

  1. Cycle to explore parks, the lake shore, and the city centre: Yes, most days.
  1. Take walks to enjoy nature in Spring and free outdoor public art: Yes, most days.
  1. View Toronto’s Cherry Blossoms and the annual Canadian Tulip Festival: Yes, I saw gorgeous cherry blossoms and tulips in Toronto. I viewed the Canadian Tulip Festival in Ottawa virtually due to the province-wide lockdown.
  1. Meet my family and friends outside: Pending. Starting May 22, outdoor gatherings for up to 5 people are allowed.
  1. Play 9-hole disc golf in a public park: Yes, here’s my intro to how to play disc golf.
  1. Paddle around Toronto Islands: Pending.
  1. Plant a small herb garden: Yes, it was warm enough to plant. A small bed, soil, assorted herbs, sunlight, water, and voilà, a herb garden that is manageable and useful for the next several months.
  1. Read 1 book per week and add to my Books in 2021: Yes, average 1.8 books per week.
  1. Take photos and share my explorations on my blog: Yes, every post so far.
  1. Try a new restaurant take-out: Yes, from Salad King.

So eight done, two to go. I hope to complete the remaining two items in June.

Linked with #LifeThisWeek.

How did your week go? What do you do for fun this weekend? I’d love to hear your comments.

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