What’s Been Happening | January 2023

The last Friday of January is a good time for me to reflect on what’s been happening and what I enjoyed during the month. January has been a calm and joyful month in lots of ways.

Exploring Outdoors

I enjoyed time in nature – always a happy time for me. Outdoor cycling and walking supplemented my indoor fitness routine. Toronto has experienced relatively mild temperatures throughout January and just had a major snow storm on January 25.

A glorious winter day
Canada geese having a snack
Beautiful blue space
Resilient Hellebores flower in winter
Snow on tree branches
Holly berries give a pop of colour
Snow on evergreens

Socializing, Art and Culture

I celebrated New Year’s Day and Lunar New Year’s Day with my family. Good food, good company, and twice in three weeks, what not to love? We all hope for a year of good health, peace and joy.

I also met up with friends for a few fun outings. Outing #1 was to the Bentway Skate Trail which is under the Gardiner Expressway, a major road in Toronto. On display at the skate trail is artist Shellie Zhang’s Beacons installation of five colourful flame-like features that light up at night.

Outing #2 was a nature walk and coffee catch up in the downtown core where I photographed Thing’s End sculpture by artist James Carl. I love the crafty title, the unique design of a rubber band and the soft blue colour.

Thing’s End, 2012 by James Carl

Outing #3 led to discoveries of public art in Chinatown.

Blogging

My blogging and hosting the weekly Weekend Coffee Share (WCS) linkup has been going well. Thank you to all who have shared updates, comments and/ or photos from around the world. Here’s the links for January’s posts in case you missed any and want to catch up:

For more blogging fun, I’m linking up with #WBOYC hosted by Donna, Sue, Jo and Deb.

Reading

This month I enjoyed discovering four new books and three new-to-me authors (Mandel, Patchett and Picton). While all four books are very good, the most delightful is The Knighton Women’s Compendium. It was published on January 4, 2023, set in Australia, and told from a child’s point of view.

  • The Glass Hotel by Emily St. John Mandel
  • The Light We Carry by Michelle Obama
  • Bel Canto by Ann Patchett
  • The Knighton Women’s Compendium by Denise Picton

What’s the best book you read in January?

Weekend Coffee Share

I’d love for you to share what’s been happening, simple joys from your week and/ or favourite public art photos from around the world in the comments or Weekend Coffee Share linkup #104 InLinkz below.

Please note that starting in February, I’ll end the WCS linkup on Sunday at 5 p.m. Toronto time. The start date and time stay the same. This change should not affect regular participants since all add their links on Friday or Saturday and before 5 p.m. on Sunday. If any blogger wants to join in after the linkup is closed, feel free to leave me a comment with the link to their WCS post or a pingback. Thank you.

Happy February!

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Amazing Walks and Art in November

Hello and welcome! I’m glad you’re here. It’s week 48 in 2022 and I’m hosting Weekend Coffee Share (WCS) linkup #98 which includes the Photographing Public Art Challenge (PPAC). Feel free to link your WCS or PPAC post to this post. Come on in for a coffee or tea and let’s chat.

This weekend is a good time for me to reflect on November and my 2022 focus on Health, Home and Leisure. The first half of November was filled with wonderful bike rides, hikes and walks thanks to well above average and record-setting warm temperatures (daytime high 25C or 77F on November 5). The second half of November brought wet snow on November 15, cooler temperatures and the start of festive events.

Here’s my monthly recap for November.

1. Health

I hiked in High Park and along Grenadier Pond a few times. High Park has all sorts of trails to explore. Flat and easy trails as well as long hills, steep staircases, winding trails through woods with more challenging terrain. On each hike, I used all my senses to connect with nature and immersed in the beauty around me.

2. Family

My family and I picked a beautiful sunny 18C (64F) day to stroll along the water’s edge from Kew Beach to Woodbine Beach and Ashbridge’s Bay. A few days later, we had our first dusting of snow that signaled the transition from Autumn to Winter. I took a few ‘fresh snow’ pictures before it all melted.

3. Friends

A friend and I enjoyed wonderful walks at Evergreen Brick Works. Evergreen Brick Works was a clay and shale quarry for one hundred years. The 16.5-hectare (40-acre) area is now a thriving green space, with ponds and many varieties of nature trails to explore and wander. We love seeing turtles, fish, grey herons, ducks and beaver dams in the wetlands.

Evergreen Brick Works connects to Moore Park Ravine so we walked in the stunning ravine as well. Tall trees tower above and envelope us while leaves crunched beneath our feet. We feel fortunate to have such beautiful green space right in the heart of the city.

4. Photographing Public Art Challenge

Here’s a sampling of public art at Evergreen Brick Works.

My favourite is Legacy (the mud beneath our feet) sculpture by Dave Hind. It’s 10′ x 10′ made by reclaimed steel, aluminum and wood. A.P. Coleman’s legacy as the geologist who put the North Slope of the Brick Works quarry on the map is represented in a sculpture depicting a pair of his boots.

Legacy (the mud beneath our feet) sculpture by Dave Hind, 2010

5. Blogging

Photography – I posted square images with a brief caption on four Wednesdays in November. It’s my way to support Becky at The Life of B blog while participating in her Walking Squares and other photo challenges. These posts have the #photography tag in their titles.

Weekend Coffee Share – On November 11th, I started hosting both Photographing Public Art Challenge (PPAC) and Weekend Coffee Share (WCS) under the weekly WCS linkup. I’ve included the links for November’s posts in case you missed any and want to catch up.

December schedule – Please note the following:

  • December 9: Linkup #99
  • December 16: Linkup #100
  • December 23: No linkup
  • December 30: No linkup

I’ll repeat this announcement on December 9th and 16th since some bloggers don’t participate every week. I’ll be taking a break in the last two weeks of 2022. After the holidays, I’ll resume the Weekend Coffee Share linkup on January 6th, 2023.

I’m grateful for all the good things that happened in November. Happy December!

Linked to Ju-Lyn’s #TheChangingSeasons.

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