Archive | Orillia

Out To Lunch

We are about to embark on the 2500-kilometre drive back home, hauling our new (to us) three-person (or two people, and a dog) pop-up trailer and all the boxes pulled out of my mom and step-dad’s basement plus a few extras (my grandma’s strawberry cream-and-sugar set; my late aunt’s three-tiered cookie tray; the 1970’s yoghurt […]

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Climate Change

Today is the third day of rain since J. and I arrived in central Ontario. When we took Mowat for a walk this morning, we could smell mould on the forest floor, and up the street, the house on the corner is covered in overgrown ivy. It’s like a rain-forest here, compared to the dry […]

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Travels with Swarm

THIN AIR was absolutely fantastic! Such an amazing opportunity to meet readers and writers and literature lovers, including a group of keen creative kids at Vincent Massey Collegiate. The questions they asked after my reading there were better than some posed by adults. I anticipate a few new writers will be emerging out of this […]

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Home from Former Haunts

J. and I came back to The Pas from Ontario a few days ago after being away for nearly a month. With two animals in the car – our senior, asthmatic cat and our 11-month-old puppy – we traveled over 2,500 kilometers both there and back, driving through Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, the edge of North […]

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July Appearances in Ontario

I’m thrilled to be part of the brand new Lakehead University initiative that gathers people for summer programs in arts, culture, and community. In partnership with the Leacock Summer Writers’ Festival, I’ll be offering a course on dealing with the anxiety that inevitably emerges when one tries to create. Believe me, I’ve had lots of […]

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no more teachers, no more books

Today is the last day of school in my neck of the woods. And what that means is that my dear husband will soon be wandering around the house, watching DVD episodes of long-cancelled TV shows in the middle of the afternoon and generally attempting to find something to do. By August, he’ll be hanging […]

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happy birthday, queen victoria

Here in Canada, despite our long-standing sovereignty, we continue to celebrate the birthday of royal monarch Queen Victoria. Known affectionately as May 2-4 (get it?), the long May weekend, which just passed, always reminds me of those oh-so-brief relationships that peppered the tedium of high-school. You know the type. For weeks before actually getting together, […]

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fungal tree

a turn around the garden of grant’s woods

This Saturday, J. and I took advantage of a break in the rain to head out to Grant’s Woods, a 52-acre section of forest protected by the Couchiching Conservancy, a land-trust organization that oversees the maintenance of several important acreages in and around Lakes Couchiching and Simcoe. With Ollie on leash, we wandered the 1.5 […]

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last call for sugar shacks

Maple syrup season is almost over, which means that the sugar shacks will soon be closing their doors. Luckily, this spring, the members of my family who are based near Shaw’s Sugar Bush (watch the video about how do what they do), a 104-year-old maple syrup farm down the 14th Line, near Orillia, finally followed […]

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the dog days of winter

A hint of spring arrived this Sunday. The sky was blue and the bright sun ate away at our – no exaggeration – six-foot snowbanks. We decided to take advantage of the weather by heading out into one of our local public forests, for a turn around a ski-trail. This plan immensely pleased a certain […]

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