Best T.O. Resto (for home-cooking): The Intro

Hey all!

I’m taking a break from the Ideal Vacation series to bring you a new challenge: I’d like to create a series of entries that’ll serve as a resource to find awesome home-cooking restaurants in Toronto, Ontario.  To start off, I’ll pick an area of the GTA, and let you know where my favourite place to eat is, and why.  You can tell me if I’m nuts, or if you know of a better place.

Toronto sometimes gets a reputation for being a bit uptight, and it’s not hard to understand why: costs are sky-high for real estate in this busy city, so you gotta be good to make it.

However, you don’t have to be expensive, posh, or even that great of an atmosphere to have really good home-cooked food.  Although it’s sometimes nice to have a fancy meal out, with so many of us 1st-, 2nd-, 3rd-generation Canadians living here, there’s something to be said for having a meal that reminds us of chowing down at the family dining table growing up.

I have explored some areas more than others, so if your fave spot doesn’t make it here, I might not even know about it!  If you have a suggestion of a place, tell me here and I’ll make sure to try it in the next few weeks.  Also be sure to include your favourite dish, so I can know what to order!

Tonight’s (almost complete) Game Review

Hey, I’m back.

I thought since I’m waiting on the rain delay in the Jays/Orioles game tonight, I can comment about the game last night.

Well, first of all, can I just remind my readers about my suggestion at the end of my post two days ago?

Oh, and one last thing: put Johnny Mac back in!

I’m glad Cito was thinking the same thing, because yesterday he was fantastic as per usual.  Johnny Mac is probably my favourite, or at the very least tied for my favourite Blue Jay, and if you watch Jays games, you already know why.  Johnny Mac does not make the highlight reel, no no.  He IS the highlight reel.  I wish I had the videos of all the games last year that he played, to compile all his incredible defensive plays….. but I fear that compilation video would be over 10 minutes long.  Someone made a YouTube video last year of some of his plays, but frankly when I watched it I thought, “oh, but there were so many even BETTER plays not included in this!”  The video has since been taken off YouTube (aww, spoiling our fun), but I hope one day someone will put up another.  Like I said though, it might take a while to make.

So last night, he did a few things typical of him, and another not so typical.  First, the typical, an excellent grab, preventing a possible double.  Next, the not-so-typical, hitting a 3 RBI clutch double….. 2 outs, bases loaded has been a situation my boys have been struggling with all season, and heck, even last season.  As a reward, Cito put him in to start at short today as well.  I like this attitude; reward for good performance.  Had this been the case last year, he would have started every game.  Some think we need offense more and that’s why he gets taken out of games…… however, I think the team really feels more confident knowing that he’s out there.  I’d like to see the stats on how everyone else on the team hits with him on the field.  I mean, Ecksy is good, but still.  I’d love to see Johnny get more playing time; he’s like a secret weapon out there.  Everyone in the Majors knows and respects Eckstein, but who really knows Johnny Mac — save us Jays fans and maybe a few out there who have done their research?

Another thing: LIND.  Yes, I liked him when he came up to the Majors last year, and was sad to see him sent down when Reed came back — even though I liked Reed too.  I just always had a feeling he’d play a major part in the team’s future.  Now that Cito’s giving him the confidence he needed (knowing that he’s going to play every day), he’s made a stellar performance at the plate.  I know a few games ago they mentioned, since the managerial switch, he’d already racked up 22 RBIs.  Now, that’s a pretty good number for a guy who was just dealing with being up and down constantly, depending on the altered lineups Gibby was juggling.  I’m not saying it’s Gibby’s fault that he wasn’t being played as much as he should’ve been — I do think, though, as I’ve said before, that Cito gives the team reason to play their best.  He inspires them.  They know what he can do.  Some of them haven’t played in World Series games (like Ecksy and Zaun have, for example), so that experience really can have an impact.  This was just what the team needed: a reason to fight.  Why were they having such trouble coming back when they were losing after the 7th inning?  Easy answer would be that they were giving up, which, in turn, means they felt they had nothing to fight with, nothing to fight for.  No confidence and no cause?  Well, no wonder there were no comebacks.

So anyway, go Lind!  I like this guy.  Another under-the-radar guy I’m a fan of: Inglett.  He’s just racking up the numbers.

Apparently the game’s gonna continue at noon-oh-five tomorrow (actually, now today — my birthday 🙂 ), right before the next game at 12:35.  Does that work?  Let’s hope so.  I could really enjoy a birthday having two wins in a day from my boys.

My Spontaneous Field Trip

Today I went to Miller Hall’s geology museum, just for a visit. It’s been a while since I’ve been, and seeing as I pulled another all-nighter last night, it was raining, and the lights looked so inviting, I figured it was about time.

I started off by looking at the selection of rocks and minerals used in Geology class for first year engineers, which involved a little wistful reflection of those times so many years ago when we had to perform all the tests on the samples to determine their properties and later their names. I always have loved Geology, but I was going through so much during that time, I couldn’t even enjoy it then. 😦 I moved on to the end of the hall, where they had a few little samples of random rocks, and then I backtracked to my favourite part: the collection of meteorites. I had my music on high, and just immersed myself. It was wonderful. Peaceful. There’s also the additional effect it has on me, based on feelings I have toward nature (see the post directly below this for more info on that), so it was really a good mental break.
   
I then moved to the main room, where there appeared to be a class trip for some French-speaking kids, maybe grade 5 or so. I turned my music up and toured around, stopping at some of my favourites — the tall amethyst sliced-in-half-geode, galena, pyrite, azurite, the gorgeous chalcopyrite, molybdenum, smithsonite, sodalite, tourmaline, and of course all kinds of quartz….. and yes, I did just go to a random minerals site alphabetically 🙂 There were, of course, many others, but far be it from me to remember what they were. I’m always kind of surprised they don’t have (or maybe I just can’t find it) one of my favourites, lab-made bismuth. I had one once, and it disappeared somewhere, but it had what I just found out is called “hopper” qualities — where basically the mineral forms an empty cube without a top, and then stacks these box-like structures all over itself in really neat designs. It’s also got some iridescence going on, which is always pretty neat. Oh, and there was ulexite, which I love to look at because it has fiber-optic properties. Very cool.
      
I love just going to places like that randomly, it’s so inspirational and relaxing at the same time. It was also nice to see some of the children fascinated in the minerals, while the others ran around yelling. Haha, I guess it brought me back to my youth….. not a bad place to visit every once in a while….. 🙂

They match my personality

I have a particular fondness for animals that are just a little quirky.  Some of my favourite creatures include:

  • sloths
  • lemurs
  • flying squirrels/sugar gliders
  • grasshoppers
  • leafhoppers
  • praying manti
  • caterpillars
  • sowbugs/pillbugs
  • tiny mauve butterflies
  • worms
  • slugs
  • snails
  • frogs
  • salamanders
  • crabs
  • the little creatures inside butterfly shells that bury themselves in the sand when they get washed up on shore…..

The list goes on…..