T Cafe

With the increase in reading material from school comes another cafe review! I'm really enjoying these, it's a bit of an excuse to get out and try different places that I've been meaning to go to but haven't made it to yet...

Today I ventured out to Bloor St, partly to buy a text book from Book City and notebooks from the Outer Layer, but also to go to a cafe. I'd heard of the T Cafe, and had obviously seen it since it stopped being the local diner spot Dooney's. My friend Victoria would go frequently before she moved back to England, so it is to her that I dedicate this cup of tea!

I had a mango tea 'on the rocks', which is a fancy way for saying iced tea. It's a sweet idea really, and perfect for this time of the year. You get a whole carafe of iced tea, there are four flavours to choose from and you can get them sweetened or not. The specialty teas were a little more expensive than at other places, but I have a feeling they may come by the pot, meaning you get more than usual. This must still be explored. They are also apparently starting to serve brunch on Saturdays and Sundays as well, which is excellent since with Mel's Cafe gone, there really isn't a place to go other than Future's. Their selection of gourmet sandwiches sound delicious!

I got through the first 20 pages of the 54 I have to read by Thursday, which is pretty good. I have loads of time tomorrow to finish up my summaries and such.

You can see the battle between summer and fall in the tree that shades the patio, the tips are just starting to show red. I had a few leaves fall on me while I was sitting there. It made me really want to finish my knee highs, so I got a few rounds in on that too.

All in all a really well rounded cafe, with free wifi, comfortable seating inside and out and friendly staff. The prices are only a little high, but you do get more than other places, so perhaps it evens out.


A Grand Day Out

Do you ever have one of those weekends, where everything just seems magical? Where things fall into place; you know the ones, the weather puts on a good show, all your friends are there and everything is just right.

I had one of those weekends, courtesy of my friend Clara and her family. They host a big family/friend reunion every weekend on their property out in the country. It's a potluck, so there was amazing food as far as the eye could see. Well, it was more like five tables, but still, that's a lot of food!
There was music, though I forgot to take a picture of that. Clara is on the right and is probably reacting to her parents, who were making an announcement of some kind. It was wonderful to get to know her and Hayley better, and to meet all sorts of other new people as well. Like Clara's identical twin Mally, with whom I was able to confirm that yes, Natalie does sound surprisingly like Mallory, as I spent the whole weekend mistaking one for the other!

Hayley had a little song and dance routine with my one finished knee sock while I worked on the second one. I can't wait for them to be done!

I also learned that excellent fruit cake may be kept at the bottom of one's freezer for 25 years and still taste good. This cake was from Clara's parent's wedding and unearthed this weekend to celebrate the birthday of it's baker, Clara's Aunt. I think the trick was how much liquor was in the recipe.
I spent the night and just had the loveliest time. There was swimming and loads of tea and dessert and games all night long. I hardly knew what to do with myself when I got back to the city Sunday afternoon! That didn't last long as I remembered that it was the Cabbagetown festival. A quick streetcar ride later and I was hanging out with my cousin Katie, and her friend Nora, where we sampled jam.

Ate gourmet marshmallows covered with Rice Krispies and chocolate on a stick.

My friends Matthias and Andres were busking for the day, so when they were done we went out for a celebratory Indian food!

Phew, what a weekend, no wonder I fell asleep as soon as my head hit my pillow!



I have very little patience anymore for York University. After four years and a fair amount of money one would think that a certain amount of attachment would develop. Unfortunately I feel like one half of one of those strange emotionally abusive relationships. You know the ones, where your friend is sticking it out even though there is no apparent reason to stay. Yet she is able to see no fault, all those irritating horrible things are endearing and that's just his way, and it was only that one time and yadda yadda yadda. Strikes only happen once every three years, luckily they canceled my program in my last year, and that hour long commute isn't that bad...

I've long since woken up and smelled the coffee, but yesterday was the icing on the cake. I had an 8:30am class, a five hour break, then a 4:30pm class, two hours off, and a tutorial at 8:30. I am fully aware that this is a crappy schedule, however it was the only way I could get two classes on one day and avoid having to go up twice. This is my problem and I know it. Yesterday however, what was bad got worse. I went to my 8:30 am class and loved it, the prof is going to be awesome, the assignments are great and there is only one text. We got out early, which was expected as it's the first day, and I proceeded to bum around for 6.5 hours. I knit, I ate my lunch, I had a smoothie, I thought about a new pattern and how I would write a post on how to survive commuting to York, and all the things I take with me. I took pictures. I bought the text for the afternoon class and read half the first article.

Then, at the appointed time, I went to class. I read the whole Now Magazine, I pulled out my sock and knit some more. I chatted to the girl next to me. At about 5pm it became painfully obvious that I had wasted my time. While I was certainly in the right class, and so were the other 75 people waiting in that room, it appeared that the prof was not. No one knew where he was. No one had been emailed or otherwise contacted about why he was not there. One thing was certain and it was that there would be no class that day.

So after having not gone to school for three months last year because of the TA strike, my prof seems to be a little behind on realizing that school is back on, and that means that he has to show up like the rest of us.

In response I have only this to say....

Dear York,

Shove it.

(un)Love, me.


Following Summer

I've been really inspired by Soulemama's posts about following summer. The idea that these fleeting warm moments are much better spent doing rather than planning. To say 'today I shall do this', rather than 'this might get done later'. To see where the weather, the spirit and the plan takes you, instead of waiting for the perfect moment. This is especially true in these last few days of nice weather, before fall is really upon us. I also have the next three weeks off work at the pool while they do scheduled repairs, so I actually have time to sit back and enjoy some of it.

Don't you just love how the wine matches my almost done sweater?
The last of the blondies, best enjoyed with a cup of tea, in the backyard.
Banana popsicles are one of my all time favourite summer treats. And best of all they only cost 68 cents!
Hanlans Point Beach with some friends to watch the airshow on the weekend.
Dinner outside with the parents. Fresh tomatos, basil and mozarella, grilled chicken, asparagus and risotto.

Perfect summer days!


The Ex

This afternoon I got a phone call from Alexis asking if I wanted to go to the Ex this afternoon. The Canadian Nation Exhibition is the biggest fair in Canada, and the fourth in North America, so says the all knowing wikipedia. It was started in 1878 as an agricultural fair, and is now mostly full of rollercoasters and irritated teenagers who hate their jobs. I'm not a fan of things that go fast, high or upside down, but when she mentioned that it was $5 after 5 and we would really be going for carnival food, I couldn't think of a reason to say no! I had poutine for dinner, and a funnel cake for desert. There was some cotton candy and a snow cone consumed. We rode on the ferris wheel, which is about the limit of my ride capabilities and I knit while Alexis rode the swings. Once we had walked around the midway for a bit we went and saw all the baby animals. So cute!

Everyone agreed that the baby goats were worth the price of admission! It was a lovely way to spend enjoy an evening on the tail end of summer, when every moment seems precious.


Fashion Afternoons

When I got back from the Ella's Uncle this morning, I thought I would take a picture of what I was wearing. The first reason was because I thought I looked nice and the second was because it involved a handknit, and it's always nice to see those in the wild after they've been knit. Not to mention that I've also been reading a lot of fashion blogs recently, thanks to my mom and it's just fun to talk about what you wear everyday! So I enlisted my mom again, who is starting to be my personal photographer. I'm going to have to figure out that whole self timer thing for when she's not around....

The sweater is of course Tempest, from knitty.com. I knit it pretty much exactly a year ago. It's perfect for this time of year, light yet warm and so easy to throw in a bag just in case it gets chilly.

The dress is Garnet Hill, snagged from ebay by my mom a couple years ago. The shoes I got in Paris when in 2005. I only have a few more days to wear them before Labour Day! Also, we shall not discuss how white my legs are. This is what happens when I work in the concret box that is known as the pool. No I am not wearing stockings. The bangles are Banana Republic on sale when we were in New York in the spring.

What's so funny?!
I don't know, but there's a lot of DIY going on chez Tea, while we were taking these pictures my dad was finishing up painting the porch/windows job that my parents started a few weeks ago. Didn't they do a stellar job? It's so good someone in the neighbourhood asked my mom if she would consider doing her porch too! I think mum said no....


Ella's Uncle

Keeping in the theme of yesterday's post, I did indeed go to another coffee shop today. This time I felt like trying out something new, small and independent. I took Suzie (my bike) out and biked along Dundas to see what there was. I knew I had seen some the last time I was along there, so I I took a chance.
The first one I came across was Ella's uncle. They had a sign that said "Don't let the cold and construction harsh your mellow", which amused me greatly, so I popped in.

It's not very big, yet manages to seem very open and welcoming. There aren't any tables, just two bar stool height counters. I sat in the window with my coffee (3.75 for a latte), my report cards and my knitting. It's a great spot to watch everyone go by, and the staff seem really friendly. There was a constant stream of people coming in, and a lot of them seemed to be regulars. I heard one guy order 'the ush' (as in usual, though I have no idea how to spell that, phonetics can be annoying). I love places that are really connected to their location and the people that live near them.

I've almost finished with the calf decreases on my second Lakeside Stocking, which is exciting. At this rate I'll have new socks to wear to school in the fall!

Reports in the Sun

It's that time again, though it's hard to imagine it came up so quickly. It also means that the season is almost over, but I'm still in denial about that one.

So I went to Aroma on Bloor St and wrote my swimming report cards in the sun, with some knitting as motivation. One row for every finished card works pretty well, especially when I save them up and get to do a few in a row. I'm not quite done with them yet, so maybe I'll go to a different coffee shop tomorrow. There are some very cute ones on Dundas and College that I've been meaning to check out.