Archive | March, 2012

Saturday in Toronto

31 Mar

I’ve had a lovely day.

I started with brunch at Fresh on Bloor. I had a delicious smoothie called a Swoosh, which consisted of peanut butter, cocoa powder, banana, non-dairy milk, and cinnamon. It was yum. Then I enjoyed a Tex Mex Tofu Scramble. So yum.

Then it was over to Downsview Park to watch Toronto Roller Derby’s CN Power playing in Quad City Chaos.

Such a shame I have to go home tomorrow, I’ve had an ace time (as usual) in Toronto!

Raw Jo Louis XIV

31 Mar

Yesterday I picked up this raw dessert from Noah’s on Bloor. Oh my, it is absolutely deeee-lish!

Outside is a thick dark chocolate shell. Inside is soft with nutty chunks in it, and sweet, but not too sweet. The chocolate shell cracks as you bite into it to yielding fluffy interior. It’s heavenly.

Why don’t we get nice things like this in the UK!?! It’s not fair, but probably a good thing. I would be the size of a house if treats like this were so accessible. ๐Ÿ™‚

Fresh on Bloor

30 Mar

I adore Fresh on Bloor (and that rhymes too!)

I try to restrain myself from eating there every day when I am in Toronto, the food is just soo good.

This trip has turned into a pretty busy one, so I have only managed to eat there twice on this trip so far. I ate there on Tuesday, enjoying a tomato and yellow split pea soup with cinnamon and fennel for lunch – absolutely delicious, and yesterday I ate a late lunch / early dinner there before rushing off to deliver an evening presentation to some parents at a school.

Yesterday I chose a salad to enjoy. It’s funny, but I’ve never had one of Fresh’s salads before. I’m a big salad fan, but I figured salads are easy, I can do them myself (and do nearly every day), why bother with a salad when there are lovely things like Burgers and Dragon Bowls to consume?

Well, I was wrong. Fresh salads are not simple, and they are delicious. I’ve been missing out by ignoring them until now.

I chose to enjoy the Mega Life salad which consisted of marinated tofu cubes, grilled spinach, alfalfa & sunflower sprouts, grated carrot, toasted nut & seed mix and salad greens. I chose to have it dressed with the Tahini Dressing (ground sesame, lemon, garlic and parsley).

God it was good. First off it was vast. There was loads of each of the ingredients, lovely big walnuts (I love walnuts), plenty of tofu, loads of carrot and generous amounts of spinach (yum). The dressing was delicious and worked so well with the salad.

Lets just say I’m a fan.


27 Mar
I’m currently in Toronto: sadly for work rather than play, but there will be a little bit of time for play…. More about that later!

I flew in yesterday. The journey over was ok despite the 2am alarm call and the very short connection at Amsterdam Schiphol airport (less than 1 hour – I nearly had to run to make my flight!) The journey took 7 hours 20 mins and I watched a couple of movies to kill time (Horrible Bosses and Time(??) (that one with Justin Timberlake in – the name escapes me).

I had an interesting time at immigration. The officer took offence to the ‘yellowness’ of my passport photo and I was detained at immigration for a bit whilst they had a good look at my passport. Random, but it wasn’t a problem.

Then it was a case of heading to Loblaws for some groceries and heading to the hotel for a 4 mile leg stretch run and some food before an early night (by which point I had been up for about 24 hours).

Predictably I woke up at 4am this morning – thanks jet lag – so I headed to the gym for a bit and got myself sorted. Now I have a busy day ahead of school visits and dinner with some college counsellors, should be fun and hopefully the jet lag won’t make me too tired!

Yaw Eladseet Episode 4 – Middleton-One-Row to Stapleton

25 Mar

No pictures again! I’m slacking aren’t I?!

Today was part 4 of the Teesdale Way from Middleton-One-Row to Stapleton, and what a day for it. Despite it only being March the weather today was more akin to May, and many a pasty winter skinned leg and arm was revealed as the temperatures rose to the high teens!

Lovely easy walking along the side of the Tees for 10 miles, with lunch at a pub, and post walk drinks at the pub in Stapleton resulted in a fabulous day’s walking, and I’ve even caught some sun!

No walk for me next weekend because I fly out to Toronto tomorrow morning for work, and I will be out there for a week. I am really looking forward to heading out there. Toronto is one of my favourite cities, the people and the food is amazing, and next Saturday I will be attending Toronto Roller Derby’s ‘Quad City Chaos‘, so it promises to be a brilliant week of work (and a bit of play too).

Page Bank – Brancepeth – Holywell

18 Mar

No photos today, but we did a glorious 9 miles in blissful spring sunshine, and finished off this easy walk with a drink in the Whitworth Hall Hotel.ย 

A week in the Lakes

16 Mar

I’ve just got back from a lovely week’s walking in the Lake District. I have the post holiday blues now. I don’t really want to be back thinking about all the things I need to do before heading to Canada next week Imagefor work.

So, after a delightful weekend with the Darlington Dales and Hills, and magnificent weather, I moved into the fabulous vegan B&B at Fox Hall, Kendal. I always enjoy staying there: Chris and Sylvia are lovely and friendly, can’t do enough to make your stay comfortable, the accommodation is lovely, food amazing, and the place is immaculate. I can’t fault it. ๐Ÿ™‚

Mum and Dad were in the caravan about 10 miles away so on Monday morning I drove down to join them and took them on a moderate 8 miler near Ambleside. This was a bit too much for the two of them (and the Imagedog) and by 2/3 of the way around they were pretty worn out. However, they plodded on and were rewarded at the end of the walk with a trip to Chesters by the Riverย at Skelwith Bridge. They do the best coffee, and the cakes (I am reliably informed) are delicious, although sadly not vegan so I didn’t get to sample them.

The rest of the week I took them on rather easier walks, and we always finished the day at Chesters so that I could have a coffee (or 2) and they could eat a huge slab of cake! Every day except Wednesday when fellow DD&H-er Sean drove over to the Langdales and we did Crinkle Crags in unbelievably thick cloud (which was a massive shame because we didn’t get to enjoy any views after all our hard work). I did take Sean to Chesters though so he could demolish a massive slab of Battenburg cake, so even though the views were non-existent, the walk was enjoyable and the post-walk treats made up for it. ๐Ÿ™‚

This morning I decided to have a day off walking. The weather was poor, it had started to rain after it being dry all week, the visibility was awful, and after 6 days walking I figured I deserved to have a day off, so I drove from Kendal to Keswick rather slowly enjoying the rainy views and stopping for a mooch or a coffee and the whim took me.

I’m now home, with the washing machine on it’s third cycle, and the holidays seem a long way away already. They were ace though.


11 Mar

This weekend I’ve been in the Lake District with my hiking group.

We arrived on Saturday morning at YHA Borrowdale, checked in, and then headed out for a short walk up Castle Cragg. We got back at 2pm so got a quick shower and changed and went into Keswick for the afternoon.

I had an early evening meal at The Lakeland Pedlar, a vegetarian cafe. I had yellow split pea soup and salad, which was delicious! It even came with a warm slice of wheat-free bread.

We then spent the rest of the evening enjoying Keswick’s pubs.

After a reasonable sleep at the hostel we set off on Sunday morning for a walk up Loughrigg Fell from Ambleside.

The weather was glorious: beautiful sunshine and fabulous clear views. It could almost be summer and it was such a contrast from last weekend’s blizzards!

This evening I’m staying in Fox Hall B&B, a lovely vegan B&B in Kendal. I stay here about once a year and always I’m completely spoilt by the owners. It’s such a pleasure to stay here.

Tomorrow I’m still in holiday and I’m looking forward to more fabulous walks in the Lakes!

superbad superbugs

6 Mar

superbad superbugs.


4 Mar


The Darlington Dales and Hills Ramblers headed north today to take in a circular walk from Alwinton in Northumberland. Now, whilst this was an Alwinton Round it wasn’t THE Alwinton Round (I did all 20 miles of that a couple of years ago on a stinking hot day and it nearly did me in!) This was a 10 mile circular taking in 3 hills and a lot of gorgeous Cheviot hillside.

The weather, however, was vile. We arrived and within 5 minutes of starting the walk we were walking in a blizzard. So we had snow in our faces, and snow under foot, which was slippery, and for some reason seemed to want to ball up underneath my gaiters.

It stayed like this for most of the walk, particularly on the higher hills, but it made the views pretty spectacular. Coupled with this we had the sound of explosions from time to time as the red flags were flying and the military were out practicing on the hills on the other side of the Coquet River.

By the time we were heading back to Alwinton, the weather had decided to stop snowing, and it felt a little warmer. The views were lovely of the hills with their icing sugar tops.

I think Northumberland is picking on me. It’s SO SO beautiful up there, on sunny days, with faultless views for miles and miles,ย yet whenever I lead a walk up there the weather turns nasty. I thought, with the glorious weather this past week, that we were sure to have a fabulous day for walking today. Who could have expected snow in March?! Crazy: I thought spring had already arrived seeing as it was 17 degrees Celsius on Tuesday.

Still, it was a fantastic walk. Perhaps next time I lead a walk up there for Darlington Dales and Hills the sun will shine.