Friday, October 31, 2014

Saturday Snapshot

West Metro Mommy Reads

Saturday Snapshots is hosted by West Metro Mommy

September 2014 - Toronto ON

I had heard about this bookshop Ben Mc Nally on Bay St. in the financial district and finally went to check it out. It took all of my self-control not to spend any money! I try to get my books from the library.

Who wouldn't want to spend hours in here?

The sign says "ben mcnally read the fine print".

City Daily Photo - Monthly Theme

City Daily Photo Theme - November

City Daily Photo - Taking you around the world every day.

Posting at City Daily Photo Theme Days.

November's Theme – “LANDMARK”

There are several obvious Toronto landmarks such as the CN Tower or City Hall. I could use the Eaton Centre but I avoid shopping malls at all costs.

This summer we have spent a lot of time around the University of Toronto studying and enjoying the many old buildings scattered around the campus.
This is University College,  stunning building.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Weekend Cooking - Liverpool

Weekend Cooking hosted by

Beth hosts Weekend Cooking where you can post anything food related.

British Isles Friday logo

And over at Joy's Book Blog for British Isles Friday.

May 2010 - Liverpool England

Taking a wander down Memory Lane today.

After checking into our hotel we wandered over to Albert Dock in Liverpool. We settled on The Pump House for a late lunch in the Dock's former pumphouse, originally built in 1870 it has been restored into a public house.

It is a very relaxed pub which gets quite crowded in the evening. We had a late lunch the first day and then returned for dinner the next day.

This was a trio of seafood shooters. Delicious and I am going to copy this presentation.

An Indian Sampler


Club Sandwich

Weekend Reflections

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Posting at Weekend Reflections.

October 2014 - Toronto ON

Victoria College University of Toronto

Look Up Look Down

September 2013 - Columbus OH
The Palace Theatre is a 2,827-seat restored movie palace located at 34 W. Broad Street.  It was designed by Thomas W. Lamb and was built in 1926 as a part of the American Insurance Union (A.I.U.) Citadel (now the LeVeque Tower) complex. Today the theater functions as a multi-use performing arts venue. It is owned and operated by CAPA (The Columbus Association for the Performing Arts).

The Palace Theatre was designed by Thomas W. Lamb in his signature "Adam" style, reminiscent of the 18th century neo-classical work of the Scottish architects James and Robert Adam. The construction of the theater was personally supervised by vaudeville mogul Edward Albee of the Keith-Albee circuit. It opened in 1926 as the Keith-Albee Palace and featured live vaudeville along with silent feature films, an orchestra and a Wurlitzer theater organ.

The dressing room tower in the backstage area was designed as a small hotel, complete with a “front desk,” where performers picked up their room keys and mail. Kitchen facilities and a children’s playroom were available. The dressing rooms are named after cities on the vaudeville touring routes. The under stage room includes an animal shower and small sanitary stable, along with a ramp built for hoofed animals to help facilitate their transport to and from the stage during the Vaudeville era.

The LeVeque Tower is a 47-story Art Deco-style building. Located at 50 West Broad Street  it was the tallest building in Columbus from 1927 until 1974 when the Rhodes State Office Tower was completed. The LeVeque Tower is 555 feet 6 inches (169.32 m) tall, which at the time of its completion made it the tallest building between New York City and Chicago and the fifth tallest building in the world. It was meant to be built exactly one half-foot taller than the Washington Monument in Washington D.C.

Originally, the building's exterior featured a large number of sculptures. However, for legal and safety reasons much of it had to be removed because the terra-cotta began to crumble and fall to the street. Lost sculptures include four 18 feet (5.5 m) eagles at the corners of the building at the 36th floor and four 20 feet (6.1 m) statues of colossus and youth on the sides of the building at the setback of the 40th floor (these were actually removed so Mr. LeVeque could have a view from his office). The spaces left by the departed sculpture serve as the bases for lights used to illuminate the tower.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

My Recipe Box - Pumpkin Coffee Cake

This was a really good cake according to my husband. I don't like anything pumpkin (sacrilegious) other than pumpkin soup. Oh and I do like pumpkin seeds in salad.

I had leftover pumpkin and sour cream so went looking for a recipe which I found on this blog.

I forgot to take a photo!


½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
¾ cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup sour cream
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder

15 oz can pumpkin I used pure pumpkin
½ cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1½ tsp ground cinnamon
¼ tsp ground ginger
¼ tsp ground nutmeg

5 Tbsp unsalted butter, cold cut into cubes
½ cup brown sugar
⅓ cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp ground cinnamon
½ cup pecans, finely chopped
pinch of salt
powdered sugar

Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 325 degrees. Spray a 13" x 9" baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.
Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, then add the eggs one at a time, mixing each egg in completely before adding the next. Stir in the vanilla and sour cream, then sift the dry ingredients on top of the wet ingredients and fold to combine. Set aside while you prepare the filling.
In a separate mixing bowl, stir together the pumpkin, sugar, egg, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg until completely combined. In a third bowl, use a fork to combine the butter with the sugar, flour, cinnamon, pecans and salt until the butter is incorporated and the mixture is crumbly.
Spread the batter evenly into the bottom of the prepared baking dish and sprinkle about ¼ of the pecan crumble over the top of the batter. Spread the pumpkin mixture over the batter and smooth into an even layer. Use a butter knife to gently swirl the pumpkin mixture together with the batter.
Sprinkle the remaining pecan mixture evenly over the top. Bake 50–60 minutes, just until firm in the center. Remove to a rack to cool slightly, sprinkle the top with just a bit of powdered sugar.

Monday, October 27, 2014

It's Monday! What are you reading?


It's Monday! What are you reading? is hosted by Sheila at Book Journey. For this meme, bloggers post what they finished last week, what they're currently reading, and what they plan to start this week.
My comments are not meant to be recaps of the story lines as I include a link to Goodreads for their synopsis of the book. I am merely stating how I felt about the book without giving any spoilers.

Been a good week of reading, two books I couldn't put down. That doesn't happen too often.


ABANDONED - title?
Thirty Girls


Everybody Has Everything

WOW this book blew me away. While I couldn't love the husband I did so understand the wife and
and her reaction to this life-changing event. yes, they are flawed characters but then aren't we all?

Loved the book. But the last pages rushed the story and left me wondering why it just went
out with a whimper.

P.S. Canadian author and the setting is Toronto.

The First Husband
Annie Adams is days away from her thirty-second birthday and thinks she has finally found some happiness. She visits the world's most interesting places for her syndicated travel column and she's happily cohabiting with her movie director boyfriend Nick in Los Angeles. But when Nick comes home from a meeting with his therapist (aka "futures counselor") and announces that he's taking a break from their relationship so he can pursue a woman from his past, the place Annie had come to call home is shattered. Reeling, Annie stumbles into her neighborhood bar and finds Griffin-a grounded, charming chef who seems to be everything Annie didn't know she was looking for. Within three months, Griffin is Annie's husband and Annie finds herself trying to restart her life in rural Massachusetts.

MEH, nothing special or memorable.

The Good Father
As the Chief of Rheumatology at Columbia Presbyterian, Dr. Paul Allen's specialty is diagnosing patients with conflicting symptoms, patients other doctors have given up on. He lives a contented life in Westport with his second wife and their twin sons—hard won after a failed marriage earlier in his career that produced a son named Daniel. In the harrowing opening scene of this provocative and affecting novel, Dr. Allen is home with his family when a televised news report announces that the Democratic candidate for president has been shot at a rally, and Daniel is caught on video as the assassin.  
Daniel Allen has always been a good kid—a decent student, popular—but, as a child of divorce, used to shuttling back and forth between parents, he is also something of a drifter. Which may be why, at the age of nineteen, he quietly drops out of Vassar and begins an aimless journey across the United States, during which he sheds his former skin and eventually even changes his name to Carter Allen Cash.
Told alternately from the point of view of the guilt-ridden, determined father and his meandering, ruminative son, The Good Father is a powerfully emotional page-turner that keeps one guessing until the very end. This is an absorbing and honest novel about the responsibilities—and limitations—of being a parent and our capacity to provide our children with unconditional love in the face of an unthinkable situation.

My second WOW of the week.
Well written and kept me gripped to the end.  Intense.

Something Happened

Bob Slocum was living the American dream. He had a beautiful wife, three lovely children, a nice house...and all the mistresses he desired. He had it all -- all, that is, but happiness. Slocum was discontent. Inevitably, inexorably, his discontent deteriorated into desolation until...something happened.
Something Happened is Joseph Heller's wonderfully inventive and controversial second novel satirizing business life and American culture. The story is told as if the reader was overhearing the patter of Bob Slocum's brain -- recording what is going on at the office, as well as his fantasies and memories that complete the story of his life. The result is a novel as original and memorable as his Catch-22.

Rubbish Tuesday

Continuing with our travels along Route 66 featuring iconic motel signs and other landmarks.
November and December 2012 saw us taking our first winter sojourn away from cold and snowy Toronto. We drove across from Toronto to (eventually) Los Angeles and back in the spring of 2013. We made many stops along the towns of Route 66 on interstate 40.

Winter 2013 and spring 2014 saw us do the same trip but we took interstate 10, further south from Route 66.

A trip to Chicago gave us another Route 66 photo op.

In earlier years we had taken many vacations in California which also led to some Route 66 icons.

I am enjoying doing these posts as I research the hotels and motels along the way and learn many new things.
Wikipedia is usually my source.

November 2012 and March 2013 - Tucumcari NM

Another visit in Tucumcari known as the Gateway to New Mexico. Some of these photos were taken as we headed eastbound in March 2013.