Ducks are everywhere and I can’t help but take photos when I see them.
In France, Duck is a very popular food item and at Easter we treated ourselves to a roast of duck stuffed with prunes. I couldn’t bring myself to buying the whole bird at the market. The heads were still attached.
In London we went Clissold Park, in the Highbury Islington area. Here we saw ducks in the pond.
On my first walk when we arrived back in Toronto I walked to the Rotary Peace Park and found this lovely female Mallard who had absolutely no fear of me.
If you wondered if the French celebrated Easter it wouldn’t take long to find your answer. Pretty much every store displayed some kind of Easter decorations and all the patisseries prominently displayed the most beautiful Easter edibles.
With all the wonderful produce and selections of meat Kevin really wanted to cook an authentic French meal. The area in and around Tours is known for it’s pork so after some thoughtful research he decided to cook Medallions of pork in a port mushrooms sauce.
We took a trip to the market and bought the most expensive cut of pork behind the counter. Over at the vegetable stall we picked up mushrooms and green beans and from the wine store we purchased a port and local bottle of Envol wine.
Back in the apartment the challenge began and I mean challenge. We had a two burner cooktop a two smallish pans to prepare a dinner for five.
Before venturing out on this trip I lost 12 pounds. I’ve been walking anywhere from 10 000 to 16 000 steps every day. Both these things are good because the food here is amazing. There are cafés everywhere and boulangeries and patisseries on every street.
Right below our apartment there are at least five outdoor restaurants and across the street there are five more.
The market is about a ten minute walk from our place and it takes us through a lovely treed boulevard.
We’ve quickly learned that a lot of shops and/or vendors here don’t open on Monday and Tuesday, especially smaller places. Larger main stream stores are open all the time. Here are just a few delights from the market.
….I finally got to use all the icing and decorations that I bought in December
Last Christmas our granddaughter from New Brunswick was suppose to come and visit with her Mom and Dad. With the emergence of the new Omicron strain they decided to play it safe and stayed home. In the meantime I went to Bulk Barn and loaded up on icing pouches, sprinkles, mini candies and peanut butter chips because Winnie had requested that we make cookies together.
Last week they finally found some time to visit and they flew to Toronto for four days. Out came the cookie mix, the cookie cutters and all the icing and decorations. It was so much fun until Oma, that’s me, ate the broken hand that fell off the Santa cookie. I was in so much trouble but luckily the trauma passed quickly but I’m not sure that I’ve been completely forgiven. Ouch!
We also got to finally celebrate Gaelan’s 40th birthday in style.
…last Friday a good friend hosted a Ukrainian lunch
Patricia is of Ukrainian descent and loves to share her culture and food favourites with her friends. Last Friday she did just that and asked that we make a donation to a charity of our choice that supports the Ukrainian people.
The table was all decked out with a beautiful table cloth and a wheat sheaf. Before lunch we were treated to kielbasa and slices of buttered rye bread as we got caught up with the comings and going of our lives. This was the first time in over a year that we got together in person.
When we sat at the table we were greeted with a beautiful bowl of homemade borscht, followed by cabbage rolls and pierogies with sour cream and mushroom gravy. The meal was topped off with coffee or tea and poppy seed cake. A lovely meal and all for a good cause.
When I got home I found a charity that was matched dollar for dollar.
One week after Kevin’s hip replacement surgery he decided he couldn’t let Valentine’s Day go by without doing something special for me. So he got on his phone and ordered a special Valentine’s Day dinner that was delivered to the house. It was beautifully boxed and only required some reheating or final minutes in the oven.
I set up the little table in the basement kitchen, where Kevin was recovering, with a cloth and candles. A day earlier I went out and picked up a special wine that Kevin wanted to have with the dinner. Since the beginning of COVID we have had date nights where we would get dressed up and share a gourmet meal at home. Kevin wanted this to be one of those date nights so he insisted on putting on a white shirt and one of his bowties.
It was an amazing meal. There was so much food that we saved our dessert for the next day.
….and in Canada it is Random Acts of Kindness Week
Kevin is back at his drawing board but in the basement apartment and not in his studio. After I did all the cooking for the last 10 days Kevin treated me to a dinner last night that he managed to cook. He’s doing it again tonight. He just can’t help himself. He loves cooking so much that he climbs up the stairs from downstairs. I’m sure that he’s calling it part of his physiotherapy and he seems to be managing well.
On the drawing board, Kevin’s mice returned to celebrate Random Acts of Kindness Day. Did you reach out to someone today to do a random act of kindness? If not, you have till Sunday to do something kind. For that matter you don’t need a special day or week to perform a random act of kindness. Give it a try.