A Short Visit to Wine Country

after the shock of losing my Dad and having to deal with the immediate paperwork we decided we needed a break

We were surprised that some of our favourite places outside the city were booked in the middle of the week, even during COVID. Toronto and the Greater Toronto area has more restrictions in place because of higher positive test cases so I guess people were looking for places, like us, to get away to.

We finally found a great old mill that was converted into an inn in the outskirts of St. Catharines. It was very close to all the places we wanted to visit and it had a fantastic restaurant on the premises. The Stone Mill Inn was located in a once very industrial area and my husband immediately recognized it because one of his father’s favourite drinking establishments was just around the corner. That’s a story for another time.

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We had dinner at the Italian restaurant in the Inn that evening and were pleased and relieved that the place was not busy. All the safety protocols were in place and the servers all wore masks. The food was fantastic.

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We decided to forgo the outlet mall on our first full day of exploring. We headed straight for Niagara-on-the Lake and made our first stop at the Wayne Gretzky Winery. A lot of wineries are now expanding their inventory to include beer and spirits and interestingly enough it was the whiskey here that we preferred. I’m not much of a whisky drinker but I loved the salted caramel whiskey. I guess some people would argue that salted caramel is an abomination to that classic spirit but it was flying off the shelf.

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Our next stop was the old town of Niagara-on-the-Lake. We walked down the main street and browsed through some of the stores and of course we had to stop in the local bakery and pick up my husband’s favourite pastry, eccles cakes.

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Back to the Inn for another amazing meal and more adventures the next day……..

End of Part 1.

A Photo a Week Challenge – Stacked

…thanks to Nancy Merrill for hosting A Photo a Week Challenge

Share Your World – Week 42

…..time to put on my thinking cap to answer Cee’s Share Your World questions

What would be your preference, awake before dawn or awake before noon?

I don’t like sleeping in that late. Sleeping in for me is 8:30. If I can squeeze in enough sleep I’d prefer waking before dawn.

If you could choose between Wisdom and Luck, which one would you pick?

I would choose wisdom. With wisdom one rarely needs luck.

If you were given the opportunity for free skydiving lessons would you take them? Why or why not?

I’m not into skydiving. I’m afraid of heights. I don’t even like roller coasters. It’s the first drop that scares me, after that I’m okay.

Is the glass half empty or half full? What is in the glass?

It’s all about perspective. If I’ve poured half a glass, it’s half full. If I poured a full glass and I’ve sipped half of it, it’s half empty. What’s in the glass? A good red wine, of course.

This glass is just empty.

This glass is just empty.

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 that my husband’s ordeal with surgeries and hospitals is finally over and knock on wood, he’s good to go for awhile.

I’m looking forward to a successful book fair at school. It starts on Monday and goes till Friday. I’ll be busy but it will be worth it. The kids love it and are so excited about opening day.


Up 4, Down 4

….an update on my weight loss journey

Before I left for Calgary I was hoping to maintain my weight and not gain weight over five days.

The optimum word here was ‘hope’. Weight loss is never about hope. It’s about ‘doing’. I didn’t go to Calgary with the plan to not eat dessert, not drink wine and not eat bread and pasta. Instead I went with the notion that I could eat everything but in moderation.

That was all fine and well but the missteps started right on the plane. I had a least 3 drinks. I passed on the bread but I ate the rice and the ice-cream. I did pass on the potato chips but I didn’t turn down the dark chocolate. When we arrived at my sister’s place the wine came out almost immediately. Her husband cooked us dinner. Pasta with seafood. My weakness.

The next day we met my friends at the local conservation area where an art exhibition was on display in the learning centre. Afterwards we stopped by their house and I picked up dessert to have with coffee. Of course they had also picked up dessert. I should have declined but no I had a bit of all the desserts.

This is pretty much how the entire 5 days went. Very little exercise, lots of wine and good food. It shouldn’t have been a surprise when I gained 4 pounds. So much for maintaining my weight.

Since I’ve been back I’ve eaten much better. I’ve had salads pretty much every day for lunch and then again with dinner. I’ve been trying to drink a lot of clear tea during the day and not eat at night. I think in the last 10 days I’ve had only a couple glasses of wine and I’ve turned down sweets at school most of the time. It’s taken 10 days but I’ve finally dropped the 4 pounds that I had gained.

The challenge now is to stay on track with the healthy eating plan and watch the weight come off. The weather is beginning to turn around and hopefully I will be able to get out and walk. I’ll report in again when I’m down another pound or two. The journey continues.