October Recap | 2018

October Recap | 2018

Hello friends,

Well, October felt like it came and left in a flash. I actually cannot believe we are already nearing the end of 2018. It feels like just yesterday I was posting my 2018 new years resolutions haha definitely wasn’t yesterday!

October was not nearly as exciting for me as September was. No big events happened and I didn’t try anything too new. School has been getting busier and the assignments are taking longer to complete. A new class actually just started this past week, so that adds even more work to my load (don’t worry it was not a surprise haha we all knew it started half way through the semester). This new class sounds like it could be interesting though, it is based around entrepreneurship, which is something I have always toyed with the idea of. The teacher is a very motivational speaker too – I will keep you updated on whether it turns out to be good or not!

Throughout this semester so far I have realized a few things about myself though. I am not an extremely terrible drawer, just mediocre at best haha and I do not enjoy it what so ever. I would rather be doing data entry then drawing and shading – but you know, now I know! You live and you learn. I have found some of my strengths and also been tested with other areas too.

October brought great fall activities that I haven’t been able to enjoy before though. We had beautiful weather for quite a bit of it and then we crept into the cool and crisp fall weather, which I love. It has rained a lot recently, but we also did get our first snowfall (which is now melted). I did many fall activities and I have realized that visiting a haunted house where the lines are massive is not my idea of a super enjoyable night haha although I am extremely happy we went because it brought me back to the good ol’ days of dating. I felt like we were back in high school – and the hot chocolate at the end to warm me up was the cherry on top of the cake. In October I made my own pumpkin seeds for the first time though and I must say it was quite exciting and delicious!

Anyways to conclude my thoughts, October is over and now we are in November. Not sure how exciting it will be, but I did get my first Christmas ornament of the season today at Costco so that is pretty sweet if I do say so myself.

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How was your October? What was your highlight of the month – mine was taking pictures of the pretty fall leaves before they fell onto the ground where they are now!

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Until next time,

xoxo

The Black & Red Swan

The Black & Red Swan

Hello friends,

Todays post is about an amazing swan we saw while touring around the United Kingdom.

The day started off touring around like most days do when you’re in a new place. It was mid-afternoon at this point and it was a bit chilly and windy! We were walking around in a residential neighbourhood and looking at all the old mansion houses – there were a lot of them! haha

Eventually we came across this really cool house. Not a stone mansion like we have been seeing, but probably my favourite house yet. It looked like a house out of the hobbit movies with a thick straw roof!

It intrigued us so we went up to it. The backyard/side of house was full of thicker brush jutting out in all different directions. We saw that there was a pond in the backyard and there was movement in it! We kept trying to poke our heads over the fence and between the fence to see what was back there. That’s when we spotted the swans. There was a couple white ones but then this black beauty appeared.

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This swan was the most gorgeous swan I have ever seen. Beautiful black feathers with a bright red beak. When it rustled its feathers and raised its wings, lush bright white feathers were revealed. This somehow amazed me even more. Such a beautiful animal.

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It was hard getting any clear pictures because the brush was so thick, but I tried my best haha because my mom fell in love with this little guy. All she kept saying was “take a picture take a picture” and I replied with “I’m trying!” haha it was a comedy show to see.

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Have you guys ever seen a swan that looks like this? Or one that isn’t white in colour? I would love to know in the comments below! 🙂

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Until next time,

xoxo

Thankful

Thankful

Hello Friends,

I know all of you aren’t Canadian, but this past weekend was Canadian Thanksgiving. This day is a time to share with your friends and family and remember how grateful you are for everything you have in life. Even if you don’t have much.

This year I am thankful for:

  • my family & friends
  • new adventures I was able to experience
  • life changes that are making me grow as an individual
  • my  health & overall wellbeing
  • my brain, which is becoming more impulsive and allowing me to get out of my comfort zone

What are you thankful for? ♥

Even though you probably think of everything you are grateful for each day subconsciously, it is important to bring these thoughts into reality every now and then. I find if they sit there in the back of your brain and never get said to anyone they become less present in your everyday thoughts. I have been attempting to practice being more thankful in life instead of just being critical and too harsh on everything that is not perfect at the moment. You won’t look back and think that you were wishing for something else in this moment, you will look back and remember all of the memories and people you were grateful to have in your life and the ones who made the most positive impact on your life.

No one cares if you are a few dollars richer or have accomplished a certain list you have for yourself. Your family just loves you and wants you to be happy. Its about time that we all try to spread more love and joy into everyones lives rather then negativity and competition. I guess in saying this, I am thankful that by nature I am not an extremely competitive person.

I hope you all reflect on what you are thankful for today and every other day of your life. Feel free to share them in the comments below to brighten peoples days  🙂

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Peaceful afternoon walk in Hog’s Back Park in Ottawa, ON.

If you are Canadian I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving with your family and friends. If you’re not Canadian, when do you celebrate Thanksgiving or do you celebrate it at all?!

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Until next time,

xoxo

September Recap 2018

September Recap 2018

Hello friends,

September was a crazy month for me! It began in Massey, Ontario while I was on vacation visiting family. Probably one of the best ways for a month to start! haha Relaxing before the craziness that September was.

As you may or may not know, I went back to school this fall. I registered in a completely different program than I am use to taking. It was, and still is, a scary thing to do but I have survived so far! Science is what I am used too, I have a degree in Environmental Science and what I am taking now is a Design Studies Certificate, which is an Arts program! From my experience so far, I am not sure if it is so much that the art world is extremely different from science or if its College that is so different from University. I think I will have a future post on my views of College vs University. I feel like everyone should understand this difference and the benefits of each before choosing where to attend!

So with being back at school after a year off and still working a part time job with doing homework as well, you can say I am as busy as a bee! Its a lot of work but I am actually loving it. I have always loved the world of design and this design studies certificate is really opening my eyes to all the possibilities that are out there for possible future careers. A lot of people think wow why would you ever take this schooling when you already have a science degree? My answer: because you need a well rounded perspective in life to succeed. Having the knowledge in science, but also being able to understand the creative process is something I wish everyone had the chance to learn.

Anyways, enough with the rant. I also began trying new gym classes in September. I went to my first ever pilates class – me and a bunch of older people. To be honest I thought there would be more people my age there! haha Even the beginner pilates class was decently challenging. I also continued to do my hot yoga practices – something I need to put more time into it is just hard with a busy schedule to fit a gym class in at a certain time, but that is no excuse!

The last thing in September that made my month oh so busy was my best friends wedding! I was her maid of honour and man was it a busy time – I couldn’t even imagine how busy she was. Even though weddings take up a lot of time, are expensive, and stressful – I would not have changed anything. The bride was stunning on her special day and her husband was a mazing at the ceremony. I wish them all the best! Now they are in Vegas! Can you say jealous? haha

The beautiful bride and her amazing husband!

The bridesmaids -such a great group of gals!

My dad who was the behind the scenes photographer with his iphone! haha He did a pretty good job!

The beautiful bride seconds before she walked down the isle!

The beautiful bride and I after I bawled my eyes out after saying my maid of honour speech!

Not to worry folks – these are already posted all over social media haha I cannot wait to see the professional ones! We were outside in 0 degrees Celcius for hours taking pictures in these dresses and open toe shoes!

So Alberta has already gotten snow a few times however nothing has really stuck on the ground.  To be honest I am happy that we haven’t gotten any in Ontario yet! I am ready for fall, but not snow!

Ill update you guys again on how my October month goes if you’d like. I know school is getting busier – the projects are larger and more time consuming every week and now we have extra events to go to as well as a field trip to a museum in Montreal! I also have so many fall activities I want to do too! There is never enough time.

How was your September month? Did you have any big events that happened? Let me know in the comments below 🙂

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Until next time,

xoxo

Picture of the Week #3

Picture of the Week #3

Hello friends,

If you didn’t know I had a facebook page where I share pictures and links to my blog anytime I a new post goes up! You can click the link to like and follow the page if you want! 🙂 https://www.facebook.com/phoenixraayphotography/ 

You can also follow this blog by going to the home page and clicking the 3 dots in the top corner and hitting follow!


Here is my picture of the week!

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If you have been following me for a bit now you know I recently moved to Ottawa! This was one of the views I have seen parliament from when I got lost trying to find a walking trail. Have you ever seen the parliament buildings in Ottawa, ON?

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Until next time,

xoxo

The Importance of Bees

The Importance of Bees

Hello friends,

Todays post was inspired by pictures I took at the mer Bleue Bog (click here to see the post). This blog is a place where I mostly share pictures and stories to go along with it, but sometimes I have to throw a few thoughts and more educational posts out there.

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“Hanging on by a thread”

Bees are amazing. We need them to survive. Have you ever thought about that? Without bees we would be non-existent. Yet, still people think that with all of our fancy technology we are untouchable – wrong.

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Bees are the #1 most important pollinator we have on this planet. Honey bees to be exact. One third of your daily food consumed (if you eat fresh produce … which I hope you do) is pollinated! Now I am not trying to say that only bees do this work because there are others like birds, bats, butterflies, etc. but they are #1.

“The gold metal goes to the bees!”

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Honey bees don’t only play a roll in pollinating our food, but also the food for cattle, as well as items such as cotton! They have an amazing work ethic and we could actually learn a lesson or two from them!

They give us amazing natural beauty and feed us, however we are still damaging their environment day in and day out. Not even thinking twice that if we cause too much damage, we can say good bye to them – our main source of pollination.

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Over the past 50 years, the bee population has been declining because we are ruining their ecosystem, which is their only way to eat. Surprise – they don’t do this pollination work just for us. However, the human population keeps growing and consuming more therefore we have more crops that need pollination. Funny how that works eh?

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Another thing to consider is that there are so many pesticides used now, all of these bees are carrying contaminated pollen. These poor bees are intaking pesticides with their food, which is very sad and hopefully pulls at your heart strings a bit. But oh wait? What does that mean for us? If the pollen they are carrying is contaminated with pesticides guess what the food you’re eating is contaminated with? I will let you figure it out.

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For decades and decades now we have known that all these harsh chemicals we have introduced and use in our daily life is harming the environment, yet most people do not think twice about it. Now we 100% know that these chemicals are in our food as well and most people still don’t blink an eye. Insecticides used on crops that these bees go to for food pollute their little bodies and cause premature death. Do you want to eat high doses of neurotoxins? Probably not and neither do the bees.

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So, what can you as an individual do to help?

  • Plant bee friendly flowers and keep them clean! This is an easy and safe way for our bee friends to get the food they need without the chemicals. If you volunteer at a local community garden bed, see if they will let you plant some of these flowers and not spray them with pesticides.

It may seem like something small, because it is, but if everyone would plant some of these in their yard or in a pot on your porch it will make a difference. Keeping them free of pesticides is a huge factor as well. If you are feeling a bit frisky too, try to not use any chemicals on your yards at all! Let me know how it goes!

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I know this was a pretty long winded rant about how important bees are and kind of hinting at the stupidity of humans, but if you enjoyed it please give it a like and a share. We need to raise awareness about issues such as our cute bee friends. Leave me a comment too letting me know if you plant flowers already or if you think you will give it a try when summer rolls around again! Thanks for listening 🙂

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References:

https://www.sustainweb.org/foodfacts/bees_are_important/

https://www.onegreenplanet.org/animalsandnature/why-bees-are-important-to-our-planet/

http://www.edhsgreensea.net/Biology/CCD/CCD_Article.docx

Until next time,

xoxo

Our First Fall Activity! | Apple Picking

Our First Fall Activity! | Apple Picking

Hello friends,

Todays post will be about my boyfriend and I’s first fall activity that he actually brought to my attention… I know eh, what boy brings up fall activities! In all fairness to him, it was a client at his work who told him about it so I won’t go too hard on him!

First Fall Activity of 2018: Apple Picking!

 

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The place we ended up going to was called Log Cabin Orchard. It was only about a 25 minute drive from our apartment at the South end of Ottawa, ON. As we were getting closer to the location, we noticed all these cars lined up along the side of the road. I thought wow this must be a pretty good spot to get some apples!

The first thing you do when you arrive is figure out which driveway to go into! Hint: its the one by the big sign. Then you wander down it and if you are anything like me you stop and take a million pictures of their cute little cabin! (star of my picture of the week last week – click here to see!) Once we made it down, we wandered into the cabin from the back door. That is where you pick out what size of bag you want to fill up with apples and pay for it before you go out picking! They also had a food/drink area outside the cabin where they were selling fresh apple cider and churros!

As you make your way into the orchard area, they also have a little petting zoo for the kids. Even though it was mostly for the kids we checked it out too … always a kid at heart!

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The older man who owns this orchard tells you that you can walk in and follow the orange cones to the trees that are ready to be picked or you can take the tractor ride in! We chose to walk for a bit of exercise on our relaxing/lazier day, but that tractor ride sure looked like fun! Well at least all the kids looked like they were having a good time 😀

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The orchard was absolutely beautiful. Everywhere you looked the trees were lush with all types of apples. It was a very hot and humid day, however when the clouds covered for a bit it was a nice break from the direct sunlight!

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So, I have never been apple picking before but it sure was fun! This is the view you get when you arrive at the trees you’re allowed to pick from. Its amazing how straight the lines of trees are! The first apples we picked were Macintosh. We filled up half our bag with these ones. They were hanging low enough on the trees that you could still reach them – although the ones up higher were bigger!

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Next, we scampered across to the other size where the Lobos were. Now the lower apples were picked over here so they had ladders set up so we could reach the higher ones! And yes, the ladders were the old school wooden ones – very cool.

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It was a bit sketchy climbing up those ladders though because they weren’t the most stable! The apples were calling my name though so we went up anyways – sorry parents! haha we got our apples in one piece I promise!

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Photo credits go to the boy – he took over the camera whilst I was picking!

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We ended up with our bag full right to the top and had a lot of fun doing it! Now we had to walk back to the car with this heavy bag of apples in the +30C heat – safe to say I has a sweat stash going on and the boy was kind enough to point it out.

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In conclusion, I would highly recommend going out and picking some apples this fall! It is a very fun activity to do with yourself, a friend or even the whole family! I know I will be going out picking apples every fall from now on!

Also, the best part about it is that you get to take home and eat these delicious apples! We still have a few left but I have been having one or two everyday!

Have you ever been apple picking before? If you haven’t, would you go try it now? Let me know in the comments below!

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Until next time,

xoxo

Picture of the Week #2

Picture of the Week #2

Hello friends,

If you didn’t know I had a facebook page where I share pictures and links to my blog anytime I a new post goes up! You can click the link to like and follow the page if you want! 🙂 https://www.facebook.com/phoenixraayphotography/ 

You can also follow this blog by going to the home page and clicking the 3 dots in the top corner and hitting follow!


Here is my picture of the week!

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Location: Log Cabin Orchard

To be honest I truly love this little cabin – you will have to wait and see the story behind it in an upcoming post!

What is your first thought when you see this picture? Tell me a little story in the comments below! 🙂

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Until next time,

xoxo