….how quickly the weather changes on Christian Island
Being on an island in a large body of water, like Georgian Bay, the weather can change very quickly. A couple of weekends ago the water was dead calm and it was great for swimming. I swam for a solid half an hour. The water had warmed up nicely over the summer but the evenings were getting cooler. The breezes coming off the lake, however, were a welcome change from the stifling heat we had experienced in August.
As the afternoon wore on we could hear the rumblings of thunder in the distance and the big fluffy cumulous clouds were starting to darken.
We managed to get back to the cottage before the skies opened up.
….so the snow is still on the ground
Earlier in the week we experienced a snow storm that broke all kinds of records for November 12th. Usually when snow falls this early it doesn’t last more than a day but there was a lot of it and the seasonal temperatures are well below normal. The seasons are all confused. There are still leaves on the trees but today many of them decided it was time to come down. It’s quite strange seeing leaves on top of snow.
…it’s looking more like January than November 12th
Yesterday the snow started to fall and the temperature stayed below freezing so it didn’t melt. It just kept snowing and snowing and snowing. The leaves are still on the trees, my garden furniture isn’t put away and my snow tires are not on my car. Apparently we’ve set a record for the amount of snow that fell and the low temperatures that we experienced for this time of year.
Today my husband got up early and started shovelling the snow in front of our house and the homes of some of the neighbours and later in the day I had to spread de-icer on the stairs and the driveway. More snow on Thursday.
This last photo is of my snow tires waiting to go on the car but I couldn’t get an appointment until Dec. 11 to have them installed. I made the appointment a few days before this storm.
….to all my fellow Canadians
As far as long weekends go this one was pretty uneventful. Daughter number two went up to the camp to continue cleaning out their cabin that they’ll be living in this summer but they only stayed one night. The black flies are pretty bad this time of year and it was cold.
On Saturday I got some gardening down and cleaned out part of a flower bed and trimmed back the Rose of Sharon and the ornamental grass. Even though it was warm enough to garden without a jacket it wasn’t warm enough to sit outside without a jacket to enjoy a cup of coffee.
On Sunday daughter number one and our daughter-in-law came over to drop off their dog, Olive so that they could camping in a yurt up in Tobermory. While they were there my husband felt well enough to make a fabulous dinner that he had seen on Jamie Oliver’s show, Dinner in 30 Minutes. This is a photo of the salad he made with fresh mozzarella, prosciutto, roasted peaches, olives and salad greens.
Olive seemed to settle in quite nicely and she certainly made herself right at home when her mommies left. Unfortunately night time was a bit rough and I ended up sleeping on the couch with her until 4:30 in the morning and then my husband took over.
Today started out promising but the winds picked up and the temperatures were well below normal. Later in the day I bundled up and took the dogs for two separate walks. Frances would only let me take her around the block but Olive went five times as far. We ended up in Col. Sam Smith Park. The water levels are still high and one of the pathways was completely under water.
No sunburn or tanning this long weekend but the good news is that I walked over 13000 steps today. How was everyone else’s weekend.?
I don’t know why I’m surprised by this. We get snow in April sometimes. Luckily this won’t last long and it will probably be gone later today.
…I’m glad that someone is getting joy out of this crazy weather
Actually seeing this angel brought me joy and it brought back memories of me as a kid doing the same thing in freshly fallen snow. I saw the children who had probably made the angels with their parents when I was walking through the park to catch more ice designs with my camera. It was a bit treacherous because beneath the snow was slick ice. I had visions of falling and sliding down the banks into Lake Ontario. I saw another photographer out looking for interesting shots and he was walking very gingerly over the ice as well.
….it’s sooooo cold
At first it looked like winter would never arrive but then the snow came and the temperatures dropped to -13 degrees Celsius with a wind chill of -20. For my American friends that would be the same as -4 Fahrenheit.
….no White Christmas this year and no snow in site
For some the prospect of no snow this winter would be heavenly but for others like me it would be disappointing. Others just want snow for Christmas and then it can be snowless for the rest of the winter but for many, winter in Canada wouldn’t be winter without a good snowfall or two or three. Those people include skiers, snow boarders, chalet owners and of course children who dream of a snow day when the schools are closed (a rare occurrence in this neck of the woods).
Christmas Eve and Christmas Day were both clear and cold with no snow in site. On the upside there was no wind and it was very comfortable for walking. I convinced my father to dress warmly and get outside for a walk through the neighbourhood on Christmas morning. We donned our Santa hats until my Dad decided his wasn’t warm enough and we took a leisurely walk along Lakeshore Drive and up Ninth Street, which my father fondly calls Santa Alley.
Right now it’s 4 degrees Celsius (39 degrees Fahrenheit) and the high on Saturday is going up to 9 degrees Celsius (48 degrees Fahrenheit). As for snow there’s none in sight until January 6 and then it is only snow showers.
…..why Niagara Falls, of course
Last week my son and daughter-in-law were visiting from London, England. It was a crazy busy week and the nine days that they were here flew by in a flash. Last Saturday we drove them back to the airport.
The first four days, Brendan and Azadeh stayed at our oldest daughter’s place and for the last five days they came to our house. Tuesday turned out to be one the nicest days we had in terms of weather. For most of the day it was warm and sunny and was the perfect day to drive to Niagara Falls. From our place in Toronto it is about an hour and a half drive.
On our way down we ran into a slow down in traffic because of construction. I made a decision and made a detour that took us through some wine country. Bonus! I wasn’t exactly sure where my decision was going to take us but when we arrived in the town of Jordon and right in front of the Cave Spring Wine outlet I knew I had made the right choice. We got out of the car and sampled a little bit of wine (it was just 12:00 noon) and bought a couple of bottles. Everyone enjoyed our little detour.
My Dad joined us for this outing. He’s seen Niagara Falls numerous times so he was more interested in going to the casino. Once we got back on the highway we had avoided the construction and quickly arrived in downtown Niagara Falls. We went straight to the casino, parked the car and dropped Dad off at Casino Niagara. From there Brendan, Azadeh and I walked over to Clifton Hill and down to the Falls.
Clifton Hill has a carnival like atmosphere. We took a few photos but didn’t go into any of the attractions. Here are a few photos of our walk down to the Falls.
The falls of course did not disappoint. Going in the middle of the week is not a bad idea if you can get away because it’s not as busy as it is on weekends. The line-ups for the boats that go right up to the Horseshoe Falls, however, were very long. Needless to say we gave this attraction a pass, especially since we had to be back at the casino to meet Dad in a couple of hours.
When we got to the top of the Canadian Falls we decided to go into the Table Rock refreshment building for a drink and a light bite to eat.
When we were done we only had 10 minutes to get back to the casino to meet Dad. We knew that it would be impossible to walk back in such a short space of time so we hailed a cab and drove back. Sure enough Dad was already waiting for us, right on time. We went back into the casino and let Dad show us his favourite machines. We all played for a little while. I was the only one who lost money.
When we got outside the skies had darkened considerably and we knew we were in for a big storm. I picked up the car and drove back to the casino entrance where everyone was waiting for me. We wanted to go to Niagara-on-the-Lake for dinner so we headed out on the Niagara Parkway. This is normally a beautiful and scenic drive but today we drove through a torrential downpour. Luckily when we got to the historic town of Niagara-on-the-Lake the skies had cleared. We went to the Old Angel Inn for dinner (apparently the oldest inn in Upper Canada). I’ve been there many times so I was pretty sure that the food would be good. It was. When we were done we decided to head back to Toronto so I don’t have any photos of this part of the trip. On the drive out of town we stopped at one more winery but it was just after 6:00 the place was already closed. Oh well, another time perhaps!
If you’ve never been to Niagara Falls you need to visit when you’re in southern Ontario. It is, after all, one of the world’s natural wonders.