Dogs, Dogs, Dogs…..

….what’s more entertaining than a dozen super energetic Super Dogs?

In the summer I saw, for the first time, the Super Dog Show at the CNE. I was sitting pretty far back from the arena and I didn’t have my zoom lens with me so most of my shots were distant and often not very focused. It was also very dark in the arena and the dogs were highlighted with special lights and spot lights.

A couple of weeks ago when I went to the Royal Winter Fair with my father, he really wanted to see the Super Dog Show, so I went again. It was very different this time. It wasn’t dark, we sat much closer and I had my zoom lens with me. It was, however, still difficult to get clear shots of the dogs because they moved so quickly through the race course.

Here are a few shots that I managed to get that I’m somewhat happy with:

These last two shots are probably my favourites.

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Share Your World – November 6, 2017

….thanks Cee for hosting Share Your World

Would you rather take a 2 week vacation with an organized tour or take a cruise of your choice?

Sometimes I think I would like a two week vacation with an organized tour, especially in an exotic place where I don’t know the language. China and India come to mind. On the other hand, I’m far too spontaneous and I’m somewhat adventurous and I think I’d like to organize some of my itinerary. I see benefits to both ways of travelling.

Did you like swinging as a child? Do you still get excited when you see a swing?

I did like swings but I was wary of going too high. I still get that sick feeling in the pit of my stomach when I see children soar to the max.

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What is the most important thing that you ever learned ? (I bet it’s not something you learned in school)

In my 20s I learned that not everyone will like you and often the reasons are not clear. The hardest part is to except it and get on with your life. Focus on those who love you and don’t try to change for people who don’t.

What inspired you or what did you appreciate this past week?  Feel free to use a quote, a photo, a story, or even a combination. 

Last week I went to a wedding and met up with old friends of the family. When we first came to Canada my parents knew few people but my father’s good friend and his wife, along with their 4 year old son arrived before us. As their family and ours grew we were almost like cousins. Carlo was my godfather and my father was godfather to their third boy.  In my family there were three girls and they had four boys.  On  the weekend the second son’s youngest boy married and we were invited. Everyone still calls my Dad, Onkel Heinz and they were thrilled to be able to finally introduce their children to us. It was so nice to put faces to all the names we’ve heard over the years.

The next day we celebrated my oldest daughter’s birthday. It was actually the day before but because of the wedding we delayed the celebration by a day. We met at Barque’s for brunch and then went back to Andrea’s and Josie’s place for cake.

On Monday my 91 year old father wanted relive some memories of his past by visiting the Royal Winter Fair. As a boy he grew up next to a farm and helped tend to some of the animals. Last year I went there with my youngest daughter, Gaelan and her daughter Winnie who was only one at the time.

It was wonderful seeing the joy my father got out of such a simple excursion. We started off watching the horse jumping competition and then walked through the barns where we saw cattle, sheep and pigs. We strolled amongst the prize winning vegetables and fruits and then we went to the food court and had some lunch.

After a meal of fish and chips we headed towards the President’s Choice Theatre to watch the Super Dogs show. We arrived a bit early so we also took in the Medieval Times presentation. My dad loved both shows and was so impressed that he felt that it should have been televised. I explained to him that the Royal wants you to go there. If it was on TV people wouldn’t need to attend.

Texture

….those of you who are acquainted with my art know how much I love texture

Rhinos and elephants have the most interesting hides. They are thick, rough and lined with intriguing patterns. I couldn’t help myself when I saw this rhino family at the zoo last week. I just had to take some shots and the back ends were particularly textural.

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Halloween at the Zoo

….it started out chilly but when the sun came out the layers came off

Going to the zoo during the week on Halloween had its perks. There was lots of parking, the line-up to get into the zoo was very short and we didn’t have to push through crowds of people to see the pandas. The downside is that a lot of the refreshment stands and rest areas were closed. The mono-rail wasn’t operating and some of the animal enclosures were closed.

We arrived late morning and we needed to bundle up to stay warm. Out came the hats, gloves and scarves. As soon as we entered the grounds we could see that staff had made an effort to decorate for Halloween.

Our first destination was the panda pavilion. The pandas are on loan here from China and the original two successfully mated to produce two cubs. The young cubs are already two years old and are almost the same size as their parents. In March, Toronto will have to say good-bye to the pandas when they move to Calgary. I was thrilled that I was able to get so close to get some great shots.

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As we walked from the Giant Panda Experience towards the Polar Bears and then to the African Savanna, the sun came out and we shed our hats, gloves and scarves. The pathways are beautifully laid out as they wind through forests of orange, gold and red. There were many interesting animals along the way but this post would be far too long if I mentioned them all. I’ll save that for another day.

Share Your World – October 30, 2017

….thanks to Cee for coming up with more great questions for Share Your World

Where do you eat breakfast?

I usually eat breakfast right here at home. If I’m on the road we often stop at a Tim Horton’s for a breakfast sandwich and if we’re on vacation and staying in a hotel we often eat breakfast in the breakfast room on site.  Other times we like to scope out the local diners because often they have the best breakfasts in town.

Given the choice of anyone in the world, whom would you want have a evening with?

This is a tough question. I can’t think of any one person that I would like to spend time with, except members of my family or close friends. If I were travelling I think it would be fun to spend time with some city officials who would know all the ins and outs of their city.

If you could be a tree or plant, what would you be?

I think I would be a giant maple tree. I would live for a long time and I would provide shelter for many animals. In the summer I would provide great shade for humans to take cover from the sun and give some protection from the rain. In the autumn my leaves would change and provide a glorious blanket of colour in the neighbourhood. When my leaves fall they provide warmth for the critters in the yard and nourish the soil for the following spring.

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What inspired you or what did you appreciate this past week?  Feel free to use a quote, a photo, a story, or even a combination. 

This past week was extremely busy. It started with a wedding in London, ON. for my niece and her fiancé. On Tuesday my sister from Calgary and her husband came to stay with us for five days. The next day we drove downtown and took care of some business that needed to be done for the purchase of a condo in Vancouver and then we proceeded to go to the Danforth so that my brother-in-law could order his Greek sausage. This has become a bit of a tradition whenever he comes to Toronto. After lunch we drove south towards The Beach, a very popular neighbourhood in the east end of the city. We did a little bit of shopping and then headed home.

On Thursday we drove to Hamilton to visit Gaelan, Winnie and Brendan. We headed over to Lock St. where we had lunch at a new Italian restaurant. My brother-in-law couldn’t get over how photogenic Winnie is and took dozens of photos while we were there.

We did some more shopping on Lock St after we finished lunch and then we drove back to  Gaelan’s home and I purchased coffees while the rest went around the corner to pick out a pumpkin for Winnie to decorate with special stickers that I found at Winners.

While we fuelled up with coffee before the drive back to Toronto I helped Winnie decorate her pumpkin.IMG_3842

On Friday we got into the car that Geoff (my brother-in-law) had rented and made the long trip to Merlin where our middle sister lives. Geoff is a great driver but he definitely drives faster than I do. The trip that would take me close to four hours to complete took  just over three hours. My sister, Chris and her husband, Dan, live on a farm and they have quite a bit of livestock. I loved walking around and taking photos of the area and some of the animals.

On the trip back home we ran into heavy traffic around Hamilton because of an accident and it took us four and a half hours. Dad had eaten earlier so the four of us went out for dinner at a local pub.

On Saturday morning I took Cathy and Geoff to a a sample sale in the garment district around Dufferin and Caledonia. We all ended up buying clothes. I found a great outfit to wear to a wedding that I’m going to this weekend. When we got home we played euchre with Dad. My husband Kevin is not into cards, so this was a big deal for Dad.

For our last night together we went to a CD launch for Jay Danley, who I’ve know since he was a small boy and now is Kevin’s guitar teacher. Teaching supplements his income while he pursues his music career. The Jay Danley Band played in a small venue but it was completely sold out. Earlier in the evening we heard Jay being interviewed by Jaymz Bee over at Jazz FM. It was a great evening all round and Jay was on cloud nine with the success of the evening.IMG_3844