Saturday, December 4, 2021


Front St. West Toronto ON

December 2021 - Toronto ON

Saturday was our wedding anniversary and I received a gorgeous flower delivery from John.

I visited with a neighbour-friend and we really liked the Christmas cushions in the lobby.

Almost there!

It was our usual Saturday of reading, watching shows/football, just relaxing.

We woke Sunday to a sprinkle of snow, although the news (doom and gloom) had us under a weather advisory of 5 cm snowfall with poor driving conditions. And it did continue to snow!

But the forecast (in C degrees) is still looking mild for the week.

Monday I awoke to this. The snow was quite wet so it clung to the trees.

WOO HOO they finally opened the tunnel again!

Taken from the Harbourfront streetcar heading to Exhibition Place as I had timed ticket to the One of a Kind gift show.

The streets on the Exhibition grounds are named after the provinces.

Princes' Gate 

Proof of vaccine and government ID required before you presented your digital ticket. No food or drink samples were allowed. Cashless payment only.

Walking through to the hall, this is the X Hotel.

Don't be deceived, it was very busy. I have gotten so used to not having crowds around me that this was a bit painful. People were not doing any social distancing and the booths were right on top of each other.

None of my photos actually show how crowded it was. 

These cushions vibrate when you sit back on them.

Displays were grouped by category, fashion, food, art, jewelry, crafts.

I was almost tempted to buy one of his Toronto cushions or prints. 

He does a series with gnomes! Photo from his website.

There was a lot of interesting food booths.

I was going to grab a bite, they had several food trucks and booths with a myriad of food selections. It was very crowded (again it doesn't appear to be). I checked and all the tables were full (it was 12:30). You had to decide what you wanted, go to a bank of tablets in the middle, place your order and then stand in line. offered cheesemaking kits that sounded interesting. They are gluten-free (they also offer a vegan kit), you simply add the milk.

Tony Taylor Art  I love his art.

The Enercare Centre is a huge convention centre with over 1 million square feet.

I only bought food! He did a good job selling me on these. They are frozen!

Tuesday was rainy/snowy morning as I headed downtown. It was really quiet on the streets.

I needed a new header photo.

Royal York Hotel Thirsty Elf pop up cocktail bar.

Our beloved Starbucks is up for rent. We don't love Starbucks but it sure was convenient having this location right outside our bus stop, especially in the winter. But we also enjoyed their summer patio while we waited for the bus.

Wednesday we were up at stupid o'clock (6:45) as a guy was coming to repair John's exercise bike.
We walked over for 10:30 mani-pedis.

We took the 4:20 shuttle downtown and then walked up to Nathan Philips Square, or City Hall. And the snow is already gone! 

The free skating rink (skate rental is free also) is back at Union Station.

Part of $ShowLoveTO

We walked over to Brookfield to see the lights at night, we were here last week for lunch.

From outside.

The last time we were here was 2019 and it was more of a market.

City of Toronto's description:
Cavalcade of Lights, from November 27 to January 2 at Nathan Phillips Square. This year, the reimagined festivities will be different, transforming City Hall and its surroundings into a dazzling wonderland each night from 5 to 11 p.m.
The City’s glittering tree and skating events return plus – new for this year – mesmerizing light installations inspired by cultural festivals from around the world. Explore tunnels made from thousands of energy-efficient bulbs, discover glowing ice sculptures in an enchanted forest and watch as beams of light animate City Hall like never before.

Unlike last year, timed tickets were not required.

Explore??? They had fencing all around, with gates. Do they open them up?

Ahhhh, the power of technology! This the back of the sign, so I flipped the photo. The old city hall (clock tower) is really on the left.

Thursday got booked the golf simulator and then went for his booster shot.

Friday I did a quick run to Longo's for some fruits and vegetables. A lot of things were on sale so we are going to head back on Saturday morning. Cracker Barrel cheese had $4 off, pork ribs were also $5 a pound off, ice cream for $3.99, onions and carrots 2 bags for $3, prime rib also $5 a pound off.

On my way back to the bus they were handing out samples at Union Station, vodka!

November's crossword puzzle stats, John pulls ahead once again.

Saturday we had our anniversary dinner, tomahawk steak, baked potato and stir-fried broccolini, cabbage and onions.

Sunday lamb shanks from the market. I used my standard Lamb Shanks in Guinness with onions, carrots and celery and used the slow cooker. I served mashed cauliflower on the side.

Monday leftover steak and salad. I made a new biscuit recipe with almond flour. Biscuits were good, the recipe only makes 6, so perfect for a meal and no leftovers.

Tuesday I wanted burgers and I made potato salad to go with them.

Wednesday the plan was pizza at Libretto's, our normal gluten-free pizza place, but when I went to make a reservation they had a note on their site that "due to the pandemic and world wide shortages they could not guarantee they would have their Italian gluten flour available" so we cancelled.
Instead we had lamb rogan josh curry. I had made lamb stock from the shank bones from the weekend. I made a lemongrass coconut rice as well. plain rice. The coconut rice was too wet to be edible.

I made gluten-free lemon bars. I think the crust could have been baked longer, it was good but I think I would use graham cracker crumbs instead. I don't think the lemon set as well as it should have either.

Friday steak with fully loaded baked potato.


I found an Irish police procedural set in Galway and am totally enamoured with it. Prime only has two seasons although four were made.

John is currently watching Mayans M.C.


Read the latest Soups and Stews from BH&G.
Some ideas based on recipes in magazine

I also borrowed The Poke Cookbook. I am a HUGE fan of poke/ceviche but John is not, so I wondered if I could find one that he would like. NOPE.

I fell in love with Charles Phan The Slanted Door Vietnamese recipes. As a bonus it has a great cocktail section and fabulous ceviches.
Cabbage rolls with tomato garlic sauce wow I could use cabbage as dumpling covers!
Crispy crepes with shrimp, pork and bean sprouts gluten-free as rice flour is used! 
Mussels in red curry 

I received a free advance issue of American Express Best 100 The Cooking Issue.

When I started reading The Lost Hours I wasn't that impressed but then WHOA it turned into a really good thriller! However, some of her rambling paragraphs with "he and she" could leave me confused.

I know I am going to enjoy, a new to me author, Jo Baker from the start of The Body Lies.


  1. Wow Toronto is looking so festive! And you got way more snow than we did. Happy anniversary!!! I'll have to see if I can find that BH&G issue from the library. We love soups and stews. We love lamb anything. I'm making a lamb keema tonight, in fact. I have THE LOST HOURS on my list -- I'll remember that slow start if/when I get to it.

  2. I would like to eat at Vagabondo’s.
    Happy anniversary! Your meals sound great!

    Oh, I’d love to see Single-Handed! I’ll see if our library can get it.

  3. Sorry this is a generic message, but it's all I could pull together. Late Thursday as I headed to the basement, I caught my sleeve on the railing and lost my balance. I fell down 13 of the 14 steps to the basement floor. I laid there for what seemed like hours, but in reality was probably little more than 20-30 minutes. When I was able to get up, I realized I had hurt my back enough that all I could do was lie on it. I have trouble sitting or standing. I hope you understand.

    If I normally visit you every day, I hope/plan to feel better by Monday. Thanks for your support and understanding. PLEASE, NO SYMPATHY. It was my own stupidity. Happy belated Anniversary, Jackie. Great snow shots.

    1. Oh no!! I left you a get well note in your blog comments.

  4. Toronto really looks like an exciting place. I hope the omicron variant doesn't derail all the fun activities.

    best... mae at

  5. I laughed and cried at the same time when I read the caption about Omicron.
    Throw a few unmasked into the mix of a crowd and I'll be out of there.
    Funny to see poinsettia in full red leaf in Canada at the same time as they are everywhere here for Christmas.
    So you have my skill of not showing people in crowded places. How do we do it?
    We can't see Christmas light shows here until after 9pm. That is about the latest we would now ever be coming home from a dinner out.

    1. Thankfully, no one can be unmasked at any time in an indoor situation. Luckily most of our night displays start at 5, as it is darkish by then. So even if we see the displays and grab an early dinner we can catch the last shuttle at 9 and be home in 15 minutes.

  6. I haven't yet been ask for proof a vax. The "One Kind Gift Show" sound interesting. My oldest son is fan of lemon bars.
    Coffee is on and stay safe

  7. Happy anniversary Jackie! I was at City Hall and they did open the gates for people to enter the Light tunnels. Thank you for linking up with #weekendcoffeeshare.

  8. Wow, busy week. I am always amazed and delighted with the photos of Toronto, although I do not live in a large city, the social vibe is always alive. And Happy Anniversary to you both.

  9. Look at that beautiful snow! Though I can't imagine actually living in it, walking in it, wearing coats and warm things all the time. Still, it's beautiful.

    Love the light show. I'm glad you were able to go and take photos to share with all of us.

    Happy anniversary, Jackie!

  10. I love your rich weekend postings and the mouthwatering meals. You live life at full tilt and more power to your elbow. Nostalgia creeps in at all my old stomping grounds in Toronto. I too hate crowds but it is inevitable at popular events like the One of a Kind. Happy anniversary!

    I jot down your book recs and series.



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