A Travellerspoint blog

May 2016

Week 17

This week has been so HOT! You can certainly notice the change and how the spring weather has rolled in so quickly. I swear last week it was snowing....!! All the winter gears have been put to the back of the wardrobe and light cotton items have come forward. PHEW!!

This weekend has been race weekend in Ottawa. Downtown has been manic. The 5 and 10km races were set for Saturday and the 21 half and 42km marathons were set for Sunday. During the week there was talk of them being cancelled! We had to walk through town to get home Saturday evening. It was madness and took about an extra 20 mins as streets and bridges were shut off!! Turns out the 9 am races had been postponed to 7.30 pm due to the extreme heat. Imagine running a race that late! Sunday's weather looked dicey - with lightning bolts and big clouds on the weather app - but it turned out OK and the marathons went ahead at normal time.

This week I tried some peanut butter coconut flour bikkies. Wouldn't recommend! Its like the feeling in your mouth when you eat a dry weetbix!!!
However the PO has been contracting me to look after class birthdays including cards and cake. Tomorrow is Jeremy's and so his GF has told me that his favourite cake flavour is carrot. Got my super duper recipe messaged to me from back home, hope its a winner! (even though I wont be able to try any!)

We called in to get an iced coffee Friday as a treat after our Naval test. The coffee shop within Nordstrom had a candy area attached with these gorgeous little perspex boxed lollies. Total rip off but very cute! My favourites were the ice cream cones and baby and mama pigs. They had these giant flowers on the wall and the girl told me they were made from paper. So crafty!

Ottawa Fashion: not leaving much to the imagination!

Saturday it was time to head to the Great Glebe Garage Sale - http://ottawacitizen.com/news/local-news/the-hunt-for-the-great-glebe-garage-sale-bargain - if you watch the video you can see the madness. It is a yearly garage sale which has been going on since 1986 and is the biggest garage sale in North America!! It was huge, down lots and lots of residential streets. People just set up tables and blankets on their front lawns. I was there from about 8.30 - 10 am and by 10 I had had enough of the crowds. I walked and walked (10,000+ steps) and only covered about a third of the whole thing!!!

Even a band playing while walking round..

An umbrella.. made from umbrellas!

An old sewing machine desk and an adding machine.

Spot Paddington!

Bikes for Ryan.

Giant chair!!

So many different things than what NZers have in our backyard sales.. lots of hockey sticks, hockey pads, roller skates, ice skates...
90_IMG_9250.jpg IMG_9236.jpg

Little kids have lemonade stands with cookies and muffins - even these cuties had a stand 'Macaroon 5' with macarons and dance music!!!!
90_IMG_9242.jpg90_IMG_9244.jpg 90_IMG_9252.jpg90_IMG_9249.jpg

It was so hot and Starbucks' new passion ice tea's subtle FB advertising got me. I got one (with no sugar) and it was heaven! They keep the key for the loo's behind the counter so the homeless people dont use it all the time.

I went to the Capital Pop Up Craft Market late morning. I thought it opened at 10 am, but it was actually 11 am so arrived a little bit early. Lucky for me, the first 25 people in the door got a cute goodie bag!! Filled with brochures, lip balm, a badge and bath salts.

Heaps of talented and crafty local people selling clothing, jewels, fudge and wooden pieces.

The most exciting thing was the frozen custard from Merry Dairy. Like ice cream, just custard!! Def not on the diet but I was dying from the heat and couldnt resist a mini pop for $1!!
90_IMG_9265.jpg IMG_9263.jpg

Views from the air tunnel facing down Rideau. Our apartment is the last big brown building that you can see, on the left!

LCBO Rose display.

Saturday afternoon we headed round with snacks to Nick's apartment so he could teach us a few more things about Ground - which is the hardest exam and the one most people fail. Nick has a wealth of knowledge and he has been army for 7 years. He hooked up the powerpoint to the TV and then we moved on to recce flash cards. Such cool kids!!!

Want to visit here before I leave - "The Tea Party"

Rideau Street Ambassadors.. I wonder what they actually do?

Posted by emdaisy 17:33 Archived in Canada Comments (0)

Week 16 & Long Weekend in Kingston!

Another week down, another busy week, learning all things naval, finishing air and starting the ever anticipated... ground!! Dad went to Whenuapai Base Auckland on Monday - how ironic that the first time he's been since I was posted there, I am a million miles away in Canada. Here is he posing with a C-130 Hercules from 40 Squadron.

I tried a few new recipes in the week, cauliflower crust pizza and seed bread. Recipes are both linked on my FB.

A few presents from some of the guys at work. Ive been busy clearing out the apartment and getting souvenirs ready for people from work. Glad I bought so many things over!

Friday called for an early finish and if it was off on a long weekend adventure to.. Kingston! My warrant works in both Ottawa and Kingston, so has a military apartment in Kingston. He was heading home to be with family for the long weekend so we swapped keys and the place was mine! I caught the VIA Rail train out early Friday evening, enroute to Toronto but I got off at Kingston.

Pitstop in town to get wine and cheeses, the lady at LCBO had never seen a NZ licence before. She thought it was such a novelty. She had to get the official book out with all licences from around the world to check that everything was all legit. I passed! And a bottle of Villa Maria was only $16 CAD. far cheaper than the $50 paid earlier in the year at the Six60 Concert at Villa Maria Winery itself... ay Ryan!!!

The apartment was super flash, but really an old folks home disguised as an apartment.

There was a games room, cinema room, common room, library, gym, but the best part was the views from the Pent House!!

I used the indoor pool and sauna at the neighbouring apartment which you are allowed to via key access. The outdoor pool wasnt yet open, but it was 26 degrees so Im thinking it must be opening soon...

This 'condo' was part of a huge development out this way, and the third identical building was being built off in the distance. From the PH you could see a game of grid iron!

Fort Henry http://www.forthenry.com/ was a great place to explore. Great views over Lake Ontario, St Lawrence River and the Cataraqui River. So much history, was cool looking at all the married quarters, dining halls and underground bunkers. We got to see the washrooms, kitchens and underground tunnels.

They had a live fire and drill display, I thought these must be members from the Royal Military Collage (RMC) next door and so was feeling rather sorry for them getting yelled at and working on the weekend. I got chatting to one of the girls, turns out they are all actors, mostly university students earning some money over the summer!! Couldn't believe it, as the drill was near perfect.
90_IMG_8961.jpg90_IMG_8955.jpg IMG_8944.jpg

The gift shop had some funny things for sale..

More views..

Had fun looking around the local craft and farmers markets. So many delicious baked goods, veges and flowers for sale.
IMG_8801.jpg 90_IMG_8802.jpgIMG_8804.jpg90_IMG_8803.jpg90_IMG_8805.jpg90_IMG_8806.jpg

Mum I want you to start making some of these cool succulent things.

Lots of shopping up and down the main street 'Princess Street', lunch for one at a lovely Greek place, and sugar free chocolate 'Mia Gelato' as a treat down on the waterfront.

So nice to just chill and look out at the marina.

I was set up with his military friends, who took me in both Friday night when I arrived and then invited me back for more drinks and food on Sunday afternoon. They sure do know how to cook. So many delicious recipes including a delicious cheesy baked artichoke and spinach dip that blew my mind. I introduced them to the 'selfie stick' and they loved it. They got right into the swing of things and started giving it a real go!!!! Thank you for your hospitality ladies, so glad to have met you!

I saw 3 squirrels over the weekend. This one popped out when we were eating dinner in the backyard! Lots of signs for deer but I never managed to spot one.

I did the cruise around the 1000 Island's http://www.1000islandscruises.ca/ which was awesome - I managed to choose the best day, beaut weather and really calm sailings. Great views over all the islands, half which are owned by Canada and the other half by the USA. Some people have exclusive islands and it just looked like paradise. You could even hire an island for summer BBQ's! #lifegoals

We passed another boat - this one did a cruise with lunch. It was super full but always pays to read the reviews on trip advisor...

The trip was great apart from all the tourists - I hate tourists! Which is funny because yes I know I'm a tourist, but I'm a nice, concientious and spatially aware tourist with no children. Everyone loves New Zealanders around Canada and always has time to stop and talk.. even if they think we have Koala's Ill let it slide this time.. There was live jazz musicians playing on the cruise - Dad you would have liked it.

I had to cross the LaSelle Causeway http://www.tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca/ontario/lasalle-eng.html many a time on my voyages from the apartment to downtown Kingston. It was never up, but the ladies told me you can wait for up to 15 minutes while a ship goes underneath!

Another Fort on my way home - Fort Frontenac.

The trolley bus had a hop on hop off tour around town.

The Royal Military College is right next door to Fort Henry. It is the only government owned University in Canada. It sounds like a sweet set up, like basic training but with additional study - all barracks, food, laundry and PT is all provided. https://www.rmcc-cmrc.ca/en There is a huge gym across the road that they students cross by bridge. They just graduated Friday night, and the university students from Queens were gone for the summer which made for a quiet wee town.

Any guesses on what happens in this igloo shaped pillow building..... Soccer!

I would love to live here! These gorgeous house look out and over the lake. So quaint.

Just up the road from these houses is this beautiful old church.

View to the Kingston Military Base.



Before you know it, it was time to jump back onboard and head back to Ottawa and the basement..

Posted by emdaisy 18:10 Archived in Canada Comments (0)

Week 15

The week of the hipster!

It was time to head to ‘Sobey’s’ – a hipster, ‘manbun’ type supermarket as the guys in class call it. It’s pretty much on the way home but I haven’t ever stopped in. Lots of good and exciting things that I haven’t seen before.

The best thing (these are totally not on the diet so I showed ultimate restraint) was the huge and delicious range of cakes. These choc, banana and strawberry beautifully decorated cakes were only $7 (plus tax)! Naughty foods and any luxuries get taxed but fruit and veg don’t.
IMG_8499_-_Copy.jpg 90_IMG_8500_-_Copy.jpg

They also had one of those cool vege salad bars like the Wholefoods Market has. NZ needs to get onto this idea.

Holy crap! This looked good.

Even a pizza making station.

Got this ‘nuPasta’ to try. Angel hair!

One of the guys from work has loaned me his wifes bike. He dropped it to work this week, complete with a lock and helmet so I'm all set to take on Ottawa! First day riding home was a 27 degree sunny day, riding along the river home. So beaut and so hot! Saw a baby goose on my way home.
IMG_8556_-_Copy.jpg IMG_8523_-_Copy.jpg90_IMG_8521_-_Copy.jpgIMG_8520_-_Copy.jpg

Statues, flags and tulips on the way home. The canal has been flooded and there is no ice in sight!

Wednesday night Gem and I were invited out to a friend from work’s place, to check out his wifes sewing room. We got a bite to eat in town first, another all you can eat but this time it was sushi, Thai, Chinese, Korean and Japanese! We were there for about 1.5 hours and no one else was in the whole restaurant! Strange though as the food was good and we didn’t get sick the next day haha.

We caught 2 buses out to Pierre and Claire’s place, to be greeted with the most amazing sewing room I have ever seen. This was a sewing room of dreams! Down in the basement, with drawers and compartments, embellishments, ribbons, threads… you name it! We learnt that Claire had never heard of an overlock but instead Canadian’s call it a surger. Claire specialises in quilts, babies and toddlers clothing, and clowns. Such talent!

Shopping down the Spark Street outdoor mall.
90_IMG_8571_-_Copy.jpg 90_IMG_8573_-_Copy.jpg

Saturday I braved the rain, thunder and lightning to head back to Rideau Hall (Governor General’s residence) to head to the Military Tattoo held in the gardens (which would usually be a beautiful setting, but not with the days weather). There was indigenous dancing, highland dancing, 21 gun salute, drill, Air Force & Army bands, even a few Star Wars themed songs. The area I was first sitting in turned out that I could only see the backs of the performers. I walked over the other side, and up into a fairly empty grandstand, where the lady told me, sorry this stand is reserved strictly for Military VIP’s. I told her I was military, she didn’t ask any questions, and I ended up sitting 3 rows back from the Governor General himself and his wife! He had a person sitting behind him whose job was just to hold an umbrella over his head. Officers were dripping with rank in the stands, I was on best behaviour, but it was the best seat in the house!! Glad I braved it for such a cool experience.

Dinner out with Matt & Jeremy, they have one week left in Ottawa before heading back to NZ. I told them about the good souvenir shops to head to before they left, knowing that males would have left all present buying till the last minute! Matt had brought the same clothes to Ottawa that I had so I made him wear them for an excellent photo opportunity. This guy was 17 and performing magic tricks and unicycling in front of the restaurant. He had quite a crowd.

The most awesome present wrapping station and cool driftwood fence.

So much FaceTime with Darcy this week!!!!! Even scheduled in some time with mum and dad and got to see dad modelling his amazing new Canadian umbrella hat that I got him. Will be great at the cricket!

Sunday was an awesome hipster inspired day. I biked down to the indoor Tulip festival at the Aberdeen Pavillion, and stumbled upon a farmers market. Heaps of neat things for sale, and I even tried some elk sausages (yum)!

These lettuce boxes were really cool. I would have got one if I was staying longer.

Tulip Festival Ottawa 2016. They have these giant tulips with really random painted designs on them, including cats, paua shell, parliament, and William Kate & Diana! There were trinkets for sale and old ladies painting beautiful canvas’ of tulip photos.
90_IMG_8672.jpg90_IMG_8674.jpg90_IMG_8677.jpgIMG_8680.jpg90_IMG_8681.jpg 90_IMG_8686.jpg90_IMG_8687.jpg

Please do not over-touch!!! Only small bits of touching allowed.

This guy was making water marbling pictures of tulips. I have never seen it being done before, really cool to watch.

There were a few old school military vehicles parked outside, leftover from yesterday’s military show. Always a good time to do a bit of weekend recce!

I tried my first dark chocolate, no sugar mocha. Delish (a real coffee too)! Here’s my hipster basket, complete with bike helmet, kale and leeks. Hipsters at the counter in front of me, decided to pay their whole order in coins. Hipsters!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ramon Davis in younger years?

Biked home along the canal and stopped to take more pictures of tulips along the way. The red and white tulip are a Canadian special! Revisited the lock that Ryan and I put on the bridge. Still there!

Sauna suit – didn’t even know I needed one!

Lamb mince cups with zucchini fritters.

Coconut flour crust chicken pie.

Healthy Ferrero Rocher balls.

Still making everyone at work fat. Lemon ‘7-up’ cake and apple pastries!

Enjoy your week!

Posted by emdaisy 14:58 Archived in Canada Comments (0)

Week 14

Another week down! It’s starting to be the downwards slope towards the end of course and I still have a lot of baking supplies in the cupboards. Time to get crazy in the kitchen! I’m not eating sugar or flour but that doesn’t mean everyone else has to stop too..

Tuesday we had some crazy fog weather where you could barely see a few steps in front. Made for an eerie morning!

At work they are having a ‘silent auction’ fundraiser and asking for donations of household items. They were super keen for some NZ items, so I donated a few kiwiana gift packs – with what they called toque’s (beanies)! I also made 3 cookie mixes in jars which went down a treat with all the males in the basement. There is a spreadsheet where you put your bids into over the next month.

A bit of a quiet week at work, we have moved onto our next topic – which seems to be everyone elses favourite apart from mine.. Aircraft! Overall I’m currently beating all the Canadians and coming top of the class so can’t complain with that (baking must be working)!

Friday night it was girls night and it was a beaut arvo so Julie from course took us out for a stroll to this lake beach called Riverside Park. It was really peaceful and the first time we had seen sand in a long long time! We walked through to Mooney’s Park and then to the Hog’s Back Falls on the Rideau River.
Hogs Back Falls:

We headed back to Julie’s apartment for a spa and then out for tea at the Fox and Feather, a local bar near Julie’s apartment downtown. We stopped to read the menu outside and an older guy who was outside told us that the food and service was really great. Not needing much convincing, we were inside – turns out that he was the owner!

Few drinks and the most delicious chicken greek salad and baked French onion soup. Might have to start making this, it is delicious!!!!

We walked home through town, saw parliament for the first time in the dark. It looked amazingly medieval! (comparison from the next day)

A bit of shopping in the weekend, its funny what you find around the place!

This bookshop was hilarious. The guy behind the counter was very strange, and when I mentioned how this place would cope in an earthquake he didn’t seem to enjoy the joke! Books went literally from floor to ceiling. It was too overwhelming to even know where to start that I couldn’t bring myself to touch anything. Gem did and a small pile of books toppled over!!

Can you see the shark cloud?

Bus travel hit an all time low on Sunday when I saw an old man picking out his nose hairs with tweezers and then blowing them round the bus. I had to walk in front of him to get out the bus back door, don’t think I have ever moved so quickly!!! I appreciate his dedication to manscaping… but time and a place, time and a place!!!!

Posted by emdaisy 15:44 Archived in Canada Comments (0)

Week 13

ANZAC DAY in Ottawa 2016! What a cool thing to be a part of. It was held at the War Museum downtown. In our lovely (so flattering…not) SD uniforms it was onto the bus and down to the museum. It was great to not have to be up and ready for a dawn parade, the Aussies were organising it and so it started at 0900. The service was lovely, the wreaths were beautiful and there were PIES!!! The Canadians were loving them, after they got over the fact that they weren’t filled with apple and berries. There was Vegemite and Anzac bikkies, can’t complain!

Anzac biscuit on ANZAC Day.

Here’s the whole NZ contingent, including the high commissioner – surprisingly a lot of random Navy officers lurking around Ottawa.

Here’s my PO (Petty Officer) isn’t he a doppleganger for…. RAMON DAVIS??????????!!!! I’ve told him he can be my work dad haha.

The War Museum is huge!

It was time to try cutting back on all the sugary treats that Canada has to offer and try a new way of eating – Low Carb High Fat (LCHF). It’s been fun researching, instagramming and pinteresting for new meal ideas..
IMG_8341.jpgIMG_8313.jpg IMG_8291.jpg

99% chocolate and spaghetti squash are awesome.

Making ‘oopsy rolls’, ‘fathead’ crackers and keto cheesecake. Google it, they are awesome!

Our holiday is getting very close, added all the destinations into my weather app on my phone, such a difference in temperature.

Saturday was time to head to Hintonburg to check out a fabric fair. So many cool things, but having limited bag space was a great restraining factor. So many talented and crafty people in one place.
IMG_8263.jpg90_IMG_8280.jpg90_IMG_8281.jpg90_IMG_8282.jpg 90_IMG_8293.jpg

A quick look around the shops and it felt like I was home again!

It was back to the War Museum to have a proper look around. Defence wins = free entry, and the cashier offering to buy me a drink! The exhibitions were really well set out and covered heaps. http://www.warmuseum.ca/

There was a huge open area with an array of tanks, armoured vehicles, field hospital vans, ship deck guns, submarine torpedo's.. you name it! Great for a bit of weekend recognition practice. There was a special concrete enclosed area with a tomb of an unknown soldier and a place to sit and reflect.

Sunday, Gem and I were invited out to brunch to catch up with our Army friends doing another course here in Ottawa. They chose a very hipster joint, which served drinks in mason jars and didn’t serve milkshakes – but did serve booze!

The bathrooms were something off Pinterest – just beautiful, but little did I know a disaster had occurred right under my nose! Cue missing jersey… and upon checking behind the door.. I noticed it had fallen off my bag and was ¾ in the loo.. RIP jersey!!

A fun bit of shopping in the arvo and found this hilarious puffer skirt.. who would have thought!!!

Posted by emdaisy 16:51 Archived in Canada Comments (0)

(Entries 1 - 5 of 5) Page [1]