August 25, 2014

Oh Canada: Toronto

Happy Monday! Did you have a good weekend? We stayed at home through most of it still trying to recover after our trip. Maybe we should go on a resort vacation for a change, so that we actually feel rested and refreshed afterwards, rather than deal with sore muscles and sleep deprivation days later. Frankly though, I can't imagine myself lying on the beach for days doing absolutely nothing, when I could be exploring new places instead.

We finally started looking through some of the pictures we took in Canada. Though many of them didn't turn out as good we wanted because of the bad weather or harsh sunlight, we still found quite a few we wanted to share. This set we took during our very brief stay in Toronto. We spent one night in this multicultural city on the way to Quebec, and then once more on our way back. With only a couple of hours to spare we decided to simply walk around and get the sense of the neighborhoods we stayed in.

{Gotta love that little beaver plaque above the door.}

We spent the first night in the Cabbagetown neighborhood, which we really enjoyed. I fell in love with their beautiful Victorian style homes, but even more so with their luscious front yard flower gardens. I've never seen such a wide variety of flowers in people's front yards in a big city with this type of climate. I couldn't help but dream about having my own little secret garden one day.

{Flowers, flowers everywhere!}

So many homes in Cabbagetown have window boxes, which make these historic homes look even more warm and inviting. Can somebody start this trend in Chicago, please? We really don't see them here often enough. It's the simplest, least expensive way to add some charm to a house that needs a little facelift.

{I sure wouldn't mind living here.}

{A typical scene.}

One amazing thing about these dense, overgrown gardens is that they attract butterflies. This particular yard had a whole group of them flying around happily from one blossom to the other. What a magical place!

{Same building, different doorways.}

{Small in size - not in charm.}

{Ontario peaches anyone?}

Walking around the neighborhood we wandered into the Church-Wellesley Village, where we were greeted by rainbow colored pedestrian walks and matching street signs. We also stumbled upon a small fruit stand that carried something rather special - currants. And not just one kind, they had all three varieties: red, white, and black. What's so special about currants you may be wondering. They're not particularly tasty on their own, but it's something that my grandmother used to grow in her garden when I was a little girl. My cousins and I used spend hours picking them off the bushes every summer. Then these bucket loads would be turned into sweet, delicious preserves that would be enjoyed with bread and milk all trough the winter. In my 13 years spent in Chicago I've never seen these berries at any store or farmers market. What a delightful surprise, Toronto!

{Walking on rainbows.}

The second night we purposefully chose our Airbnb accommodations in a different part of the city - Little Italy. We didn't have time to try any restaurants or check out any stores (there are so many great ones), except for Eweknit. It wasn't part of our plan, but I was lured in by the window display, and oh my, what a knitter's paradise I found. Since I'm used to buying my yarn at a general craft store (and being constantly disappointment by their offerings), this was almost too overwhelming.

There's yarn in every color of the rainbow and the best part - every one I checked was made out of 100% natural fibers. Try to find that at Michael's.

They have a great selection of fun fabrics as well. I wish I had more time to look though it all.

{How do you choose just one?}

{Love the use of humor in the traffic signs here.}

So long, Toronto! Hope next time we get to know you a little better.


  1. Oh man! It is such a shame you didn't stay longer. We could have met for drinks and dinner : (

    You choose some really cool neighbourhoods. I used to live in the Annex, not too far from Honest Eds. Now I live 20 minutes outside of the centre of Toronto in Mississauga.

    Church St. Village is such a fun place too. I haven't been to Cabbagetown for a while.

    Really you need to make a trip and just spend a week in Toronto : ) Next time right? And I'll show you all around. If you're coming on your own I've got a little guest room that'd suit you just right I think. Might be a bit tight in the single bed for both of you though ...or not...ha ha!

    Wonderful photos.


  2. Canada is a very pretty place (however I may be a little biased as I live there). These are such beautiful photos! I am glad you had a good trip!!

    Lauren xo
    Sophisticated In Style

  3. Beautiful pictures! I've lived in Montreal for a long time where a rivalry with Toronto. I was shocked at the incredibly vibrant neighbourhoods and independent shops when I finally got there a few years ago!

  4. You always travel to the most charming places! I am obsessed with all of those flowers! I agree—more people need to start putting window boxes on their houses. I also love the wild growing gardens; I am a huge fan of that free, organic look. Oh I know what you mean about being so tired after a trip. Dan and I are always on the move when taking trips (big or small) and never really rest. We always need a vacation from our vacation :/ Anyway, looks like you had a lovely time. Always love seeing photos from your travels! xo