Browsing archives for 'In the ‘Hood'

Four Years of Santa Photos

9 December 2014 | 0 Comments


Earlier tonight, we took Clara to have her annual photo with Santa. Every year, a wonderful coffee shop in our neighbourhood, Tango Palace, hosts an evening for the neighbourhood. They have a great Santa and encourage you to bring your own camera for photos. They give out candy canes and hot chocolate, and it has a wonderful neighbourhood feel (instead of the expensive and synthetic-feeling mall scene).

I realized this is our fourth year (!!!) with the same Santa, and thought it would be fun to put the pictures next to each other, to compare. Note the photo from last year, when she was so upset by Santa, I had to sit next to her or she wouldn’t allow any photo at all!

I love that Clara is giving Santa the exact same look this year as she did when she was 9 months old.  Side-by-side evidence is below. What a little boss. Thank you Tango Palace – we love being in Leslieville with you.


Super Hip New Store Coming to Leslieville

24 September 2014 | 1 Comment


Ooooooh this is good. The shop next to Leslieville Pumps (at 935 Queen Street East) has had a sign saying “Good Things Come to Those Who Wait” in its windows for a long time. Apparently the wait is almost over, because the new shop, called Good Neighbour, is opening as soon as this weekend (according to blogTO).

The boutique will have a “dedicated mini-store” for the Drake General Store and feature collaborations with Love the Design. Swoon!

Working in Coffee Shops with Friends

19 August 2014 | 2 Comments


I’ve been feeling unmotivated at work lately, and have been procrastinating and slacking off. I think it’s end-of-summer malaise. To shake things up a bit, I wrote to a couple of friends who also work from home, and asked if they’d like to meet up in coffee shops and work there instead. The change of scenery is great, and casually co-working with friends is fun. Today we’re at Brickyard Grounds in Leslieville (pictured above).



Where I’ll Be On Sunday

15 August 2014 | 0 Comments


My neighbourhood, Leslieville, is totally the place to be in Toronto on Sunday. The Leslieville Flea will be on at the Ashbridges Estate, and the Leslieville Farmers’ Market is just down the street.  Hitting up both is always a treat, but this Sunday August 17 is extra special… it’s “BaconFest” at the Farmers’ Market. There’s a competition featuring chefs from the Ceili Cottage, The County General Riverside, Glas, Rashers, Skin + Bones, East Side Social and more. You know where to find me on Sunday!

PS – This is my 800th blog post. EIGHT HUNDRED. Whoa.

So… I Took My Time Coming Back from Break…

15 January 2014 | 0 Comments


I haven’t blogged for a couple weeks, which to be honest, has been kinda nice.  But now I’m back, and I have lots of fun, random stuff to share!

First up… a list of 5 Amazing Transit Hotels (hotels that are in train stations or airports). I would love to go to Hotel La Ferme, in the Charlevoix region Quebec. I would eat cheese and Ian would drink beer all day.

Next up… I can’t wait to check out a new coffeehouse in my neighbourhood, Brickyard Grounds. They’ve had  great writeups in blogTO and Toronto Life, and those Belgian waffles are totally calling my name.

And finally… Clara (who is almost 3!) has started little ballet lessons at our amazing new local play centre, Sprouts. She has proper ballet slippers and everything. It’s so cute I can hardly stand it. Little girls really are the best.

[picture of Clara in her ballet class, above]

Show Your Queen East / Leslieville Pride

2 October 2013 | 7 Comments



2.5 year old Clara LOVES streetcars. She waves at them when they go by, and thinks that riding on one is just about the coolest thing ever. After scouring the web to find TTC merchandise that she would enjoy (like a little toy streetcar), I came up pretty short.  (Hey TTC – TOTAL lost opportunity there.)

So I decided to make a shirt for Clara to show her Leslieville / Queen East streetcar pride. Kinnon sent me an illustration of a streetcar that she made for a poster design, so I added some text and made my own merch using Zazzle.  I think the shirt turned out pretty great (that’s Clara wearing the final product, being a total goof, above).  So I decided to share the design with you all.  You can order the Queen East Streetcar on a shirt, mug, apron, tote bag, trucker hat, button, magnet… the possibilities go on and on.  Check out all your options, and order here.

PS – I just noticed that Zazzle is having a sale today for 20% off all orders if you use promo code OCTOBERSAVER at checkout. Score!

My Favourite Local Flower Shop Won Big!

4 July 2013 | 1 Comment


My favourite local flower shop, Florabunda, won the American Express Neighbourhood Gems contest for best local small business.  There’s a video on the Globe and Mail website all about them, their prize, and some tips for other local small biz owners.  Oh, and Clara’s wonderful old nanny is in the video (she’s wearing a hat).

Congrats Florabunda!  I’ll be by tomorrow to pick up some goodies…

[photo from Florabunda’s Facebook page]

Leslieville Wading Pools and Splash Pads

25 June 2013 | 0 Comments


Doesn’t this humid weather make you want to go play in a wading pool or splash pad?  Lucky for you, I’ve compiled a list of the wading pools and splash pads in Leslieville, complete with their hours.  Download the PDF here.

[photo of Clara enjoying a splash pad during our trip to Montreal last summer]

What’s Your “Go To” Cocktail?

26 February 2013 | 0 Comments




Cocktails are very hip right now.  And no, I’m not talking about martinis – cosmos are sooooooo 2004.  I’m talking about the kind of cocktails your grandparents drink, made from bourbon and whiskey and such.  My usual “go to” is a Dark and Stormy, but last week I was out with Kinnon at Leslieville’s newly opened Hitch (named after Christopher Hitchens, of course), and I tried an Old Fashioned.  It was fantastic – they had it just right.  A little bit bitter, a little orangey… yummy.

Toronto Life did a little feature on Hitch, and so did blogTO.  Doesn’t it look great?  And it’s just around the corner from my house.  My neighbourhood really is the best.

[photos by Jesse Milns for blogTO]

Sticky Toffee Pudding

24 January 2013 | 0 Comments



The recipe for the Ceili Cottage’s sticky toffee pudding is in the Toronto Star today.  Actually, it’s Kyle Deming’s recipe (he used to be the chef at the cottage, and now runs Sausage Partners down the street).  The recipe has been shared before (it was in Toronto Life in 2009), but it’s nice to see it circulating again.  Especially in wintry January, when that stuff would taste soooooo good.