Lens Artists Photo Challenge – Creepy

…thanks to Leya for hosting this week’s Lens Artists Photo Challenge

Many of these photos were taken at art galleries in London, England and here in Toronto.   Others are from the Toronto zoo and from the Highgate Cemetery in London. The one of my son-in-law is a selfie he took because he knew he was being followed by that fox. Being followed by a fox is the creepy part for me not my son-in-law.IMG-0331



Friendly Friday Photo Challenge – Design

thanks to Snow from The Snow Melts Somewhere for hosting this week’s Friendly Friday

Design is everywhere. We often travel far and wide to capture beautiful design elements in architecture when there are wonderful design elements right under our noses here at home.

Design in London, England


Here at home and in the neighbourhood


WPC – Tour Guide of Toronto

….thanks to Word Press  for a theme close to my heart

People always ask me if I’ll move away from Toronto when I retire. I can’t imagine living anywhere else right now. I live in the southwestern area of Toronto more commonly known as New Toronto or South Etobicoke. I love being 15 minutes from downtown (depending on the time of day) and being able to take advantage of all the city has to offer. On the other hand, I feel blessed to live where I do. A century ago people used to travel to this neighbourhood from downtown because they had cottages here on the lake. A few of those old structures still stand today but they are quickly being eaten up by renovators who appreciate the value of the land.

My father recently moved back here after living in Oshawa for 20 years. He feels like he’s come back home. Nothing beats the view of the city skyline that I see everyday at the bottom of the street where I’ve lived for 39 years.


I love the nature trails and beautiful parks that you can find all over the city. The big one in my neighbourhood has wonderful hiking and biking paths that wind through Colonel Samuel Smith Park and the Humber College grounds. Part of it is a naturalized area with a pond in the middle and Lake Ontario at the south end. We have more wildlife here than we do at my cottage. It’s not unusual to see coyotes, foxes, beavers, turtles, o’possums, racoons, skunks and the occasional deer. We have birds and waterfowl galore. In the summer many people come to the park to take advantage of the beaches that line the eastern side of the extension to get relief from the heat or to paddle or kite surf.

If you’re not into nature the city offers the best in museums, art galleries, aquariums, recreational sports and the best restaurants.


Thursday Doors – January 25, 2018

….thanks to Norm for hosting Thursday Doors

On Wednesday of this week I went on a little road trip with my husband to Collingwood. He had an appointment with a client and he invited me come along to keep him company on the two hour drive there and then home again. It was a beautiful day and the drive was easy.

As we got further north the countryside was almost magical. It looked like they had a dusting of fresh snow that coated all the trees and the snow itself was still pristine white. Luckily the roads had been cleared and driving was pretty uneventful.

Collingwood is very much a tourist town, with cottagers in the summer and skiing in the winter. The population is only about 18 000. The Main Street is where most of the shopping and restaurants are but I’m sure that somewhere in Collingwood there are malls and box stores and fast-food restaurants. I was happy to be dropped off on the Main Street while my husband drove to his appointment.

I spent most of my time browsing through the stores, checking out the art gallery, photographing the store fronts and enjoying a coffee at one of the local coffee shops. The downtown area has been designated provincially as a historic site and many of the storefronts have maintained it’s original architectural features. Two of the older buildings house the municipal offices and federal government offices.

Many of the stores still had some Christmas decorations in the windows and on the sidewalk. I loved the art on the exterior walls and I can imagine that in the summer when the trees are adorned with their leaves that walking along here is very pleasant.

I met my husband in a lovely coffee shop called the Espresso Post. While I waited I enjoyed a flat white and sketched in my drawing book. I loved the feel of the place with it’s heavy sturdy tables and chairs and high ceilings. When my husband arrived he also ordered a flat white and then we walked down the street to a restaurant called Sol Kitchen. It was recommended to me by the ladies who owned the art gallery called Butter Art Gallery. It was a great recommendation. The food was excellent and there was art on all the walls from local painters. My kind of place.

Share Your World 2015 – Week 20

…..thanks Cee for four more thought provoking questions

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

I learned early on in my adult years that not everyone you meet will like you. The first time I discovered that someone really didn’t like me it took me for a loop. I get along with most people so when someone dislikes you for simply being yourself it can be somewhat hurtful. I don’t let it bother me anymore and figure that the problem lies with them.

I also learned that friends you make in school won’t necessarily be your friends later in life and sometimes if you’re lucky you can rekindle old friendships as you get older. In recent years I’ve been fortunate to be able to do that.


What feeds your enthusiasm for life?

I love to learn and try new experiences. I get joy from reading, doing art, teaching art, taking photographs and spending time with family and friends.

What’s your most memorable (good or bad) airplane commercial or private flight?

My most memorable airplane flight took place last year when my brother-in-law treated my middle sister and me to a complimentary flight, first class, to Calgary. The seats were comfortable, the food was good and our wine glasses were never empty. The flight took place on Air Canada.

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If you were a great explorer, what would you explore?

I would explore all the great museums and art galleries of the world. That of course would take me to the most amazing cities in the world as well so I would check out all the historic sites and local markets and artisans.

Bonus question: What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up?

I’m grateful for spending an interesting day in Hamilton last week. I discovered a whole slew of interesting stores, restaurants and galleries in my daughter’s new neighbourhood. I can’t wait to go back and check out some of these places more closely.

I’m grateful that my husband’s biopsy went smoothly and that there weren’t any complications. The results were inconclusive so we have to wait for another test.

This week I’m looking forward to watching the girls play in their soccer tournament and meeting the author that I booked for the students’ activity day. Forty students met their goal of reading at least ten books in the last five months and earned a special day where they are excused from class to attend a drama workshop and bookmaking workshop, are treated to lunch and in the afternoon spend time with one of the authors whose book was nominated for the 2015 Forest of Reading Collection. It should be a lot of fun.

I’ll end with some photographs that I took the last few days.

My Year of Art in Photos – Part 2

….continuing with the writing challenge

April & May – students creating masterpieces for the Fun Fair Silent Auction

June – Painting My Garden – an on-line course, my birch tree painting on wood and warm-up contour drawings for the first Summer Art Camp assignment

August – Summer Art Camp kept me very busy

Thanks to Word Press for this challenge. Stay tuned for part 3.



My Year of Art in Photos – Part 1

….this week’s Word Press writing challenge is to create a photo essay on any subject that I feel passionate about

I love art. I create art, I teach art to children and I go to art galleries. Here’s my year in art.

January – Children’s art and assignments from Faces 101 (on-line class with Carla Sonheim)

February – my pottery, collaged faces, children’s collage fantasy art, trip to the AGO

March – Student abstracts. weaving, portraits and my abstracts, owls and indigo tie dye creations

Stay tuned for parts 2, 3, and 4