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

Picture of the Week #8

Picture of the Week #8

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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We have recently gotten our first little snow fall in Ottawa, ON, but I did not get any pictures of it so I thought I would bring back an old picture with a bit of snow! I love the first snow fall, it gets me all excited for winter! And with winter comes Christmas! haha I know its early, but its the best time of the year!

Have you gotten your first snowfall yet where you live?

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Until next time,

xoxo

Spooky Halloween Tag 2018

Spooky Halloween Tag 2018

Hello friends,

In the spirit of Halloween I thought I would do a Halloween Tag to let you in on a few of my spooky ideas and thoughts! Here it goes!

1. Favourite horror or Halloween-themed song?

One eyed one horn flying purple people eater (click here to listen if you don’t know it!)

2. Name something you wouldn’t want to run into in a dark forest or in an abandoned building.

Probably Lord Voldemort

3. Have you ever played with an Ouija Board?

I think maybe once in like grade 6 but I am not entirely sure if it was real or fake

4. Favourite horror monster or villain?

Cruella Deville (Does she count? lol I love the little Dalmatian puppies)

5. The creepiest thing that’s ever happened while you were alone?

Nothing too creepy has ever happened to me while I was alone actually! Just weird noises but I am sure its all in the head!

6. If you were dared to spend the night in a “haunted house”, would you do it?

Yes I would as long as I could bring my mom with me because I know she would love that! haha

7. Are you superstitious?

Yes in a way I guess. I make wishes at 11:11 and when I have an eyelash fall out? But on the other hand I think black cats are cute and not bad luck so thats my answer!

8. Do you ever see figures in your peripheral vision?

Yes when there are figures there 😂

9. Which urban legend scares you the most?

Not sure if I have really payed attention to any …

10. Do you prefer gore or thrillers?

Definitely thrillers – way more interesting!

11. Do you believe in multiple dimensions or worlds?

Yeap!

12. Ever made a potion of any sort?

When me and my sister were younger we use to mix condiments together and pretend it was a potion…

13. Do you get scared easily?

Yes and no – really depends on my mood

14. Have you ever played Bloody Mary?

Yeah and I was scared at the time but it never worked for me or my friends

15. Do you believe in demons/the devil?

Nah

16. You’re home alone but you hear footsteps in your house, what do you do?

Don’t go check it out like everyone in scary movies does – I call my dad or boyfriend instead 😂

17. If you got trapped in one scary movie, which would you choose?

Does Hocus Pocus count?!

18. If you could only wear one halloween costume for the rest of your life, what would you be?

I would buy one of those giant blow up sumo wrestler costumes and be that

19. would you ever go to a graveyard at night?

Yup and I have lots of times.

20. In a zombie apocalypse what is your weapon of choice?

A samurai sword duh

21. Would you rather go to a Halloween party or go trick or treating?

Trick or Treating 100% (hard core introvert)

22. You’re in a horror movie. Are you the final girl, the first to die, the comic relief, the skeptic, the smart one, or the killer?

The comic relief

23. Do you have to watch something happy after watching a horror movie so you can go to sleep?

I like to try to but usually one movie does it for me and I pass out 5 minutes into the comedy

24. Whilst watching scary movies, are you the person who yells at the characters, the person with their eyes covered the whole time, or the person who falls asleep?

In the beginning I am the person with my eyes covered and by the end I am the one who has finished the popcorn and is snoring.

25. Are you the one who gets scared, or the one who does the scaring?

Well I am not good at scaring people so I guess I am the one who gets scared

26. Favorite scary book?

Don’t have one

27. How old were you when you saw your first horror movie?

I think grade 6 maybe, so however old you are in that grade

28. What was your first Halloween costume?

I can’t remember what my very first one was, but I know I was every kind of witch there was when I was younger so probably a witch

29. What are you going to be for Halloween this year?

An adult 😂

30. If you could have a spooky halloween pet (black cat, owl, bat, rat, wolf), what would you pick?

Wolf – I had a dog that was half wolf and he was the most massive, gentle giant you ever did see.

Well I hope you enjoyed that Halloween tag and now I tag all of you to answer those questions on your own blog or in the comments below! If you have your own Halloween tag already up, link it in the comments so I can see your answers!

Also, let me know if you’re dressing up for Halloween this year or what your kids are being! Cute kids are the best when they come to your door to get candy haha just adorable!

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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

Exploring Haunted Houses at Saunders Farm!

Exploring Haunted Houses at Saunders Farm!

Hello friends,

Todays post will be about what I did this past weekend! It was full of fun Halloween festivities – the best kind of festivities at this time of year!

Friday morning I bought tickets for my boyfriend and I to go to Saunders Farm the following night. He had gone there years ago when he was younger and has been talking about it since we moved to Ottawa – so I knew we had to go! To be honest, I wanted to see what all the hype was about. I have only ever been to something like this once when I was in grade 7 with my best friend at the time. It was in Fort McMurray, so it was a lot smaller then Saunders Farm!

Since we arrived at the farm I could see there were so many things to do! Even though I bought night tickets, I made my boyfriend come early because I wanted to do the mazes haha like a little kid. I have no shame – they were the best part in my opinion! They had lots of mazes to pick from too. They ranged from ones for little kids to a very intense, hard, and long one! We ended up having to sneak through a hole to get out because the mazes were closing and we couldn’t find our way out! haha

They also had playgrounds for kids and a massive bouncy thing in the ground for them to jump on – it looked like lots of fun!

The sunset was also beautiful on Saturday night. The colours became more vibrant and intense as it set.

We left the mazes and headed to the scary stuff! The lines were huge so we only had the chance to do 2 things before I was completely frozen because it was around 0 degrees Celcius and we were outside for 3 hours! The first one we went through was called The Coven Witch Trail – it was almost dark by the time we got in and to be honest it was scary. It would have been even better if we had waited until it was fully dark out, but like I said the lines only kept getting longer! The second we went through was called The Barn of Terror. The first one we went through ended right by the entrance to this one so we decided to wait. The line did not look long at first….

As we walked past the hedges and get into the real line we see how long it is. After about 10 minutes of waiting we hit a sign that says 30 minute wait from here. I thought … okay I can do 30 minutes. It ended up being a 1.5 hour wait! Barley moving and freezing because we weren’t moving around. This is what killed my mood – if they know its going to be that long of a wait at least don’t lie on the sign! Anyways, I found The Barn of Terror a bit disappointing in the scare factor, but the makeup and decorations were amazing!

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Once we finished up at the barn, I was frozen! We ended up grabbing some hot chocolate, to warm up my hands, and a few homemade treats to go! As soon as we got in the car, which we forgot where we parked it so finding it was an adventure in itself, we cranked the heat and headed home!

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The next day, Sunday, was pumpkin carving day! I talked my boyfriend into buying a pumpkin when we went grocery shopping – I coaxed him by saying I would cook up the pumpkin seeds! It took us a while to pick out what we wanted to carve into it. Eventually we decided to google pumpkin carving ideas and we came upon a Harry Potter one. We felt like we were in one of the Harry Potter movies while going through those mazes made of hedges, so we thought it was a good fit! And now because I am an artist (LOL) I drew it out. I got to carve the scar and mouth while the boy claimed the eyes.

The pumpkin seeds I roasted were cinnamon brown sugar flavour. To create this master piece you have too:

  1. Pick out seeds & clean them.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  3. Melt 1 tbsp butter in a bowl. Then mix in 1.5 tbsp brown sugar and 1 tsp of cinnamon.
  4. Toss the seeds in the mixture and then spread them out on a lined baking sheet.
  5. Place sheet in oven and bake for 15-20 minutes. Taking out to flip (or stir around) half way.
  6. Let cool on baking sheet – then eat!

The recipe is so simple and they turned out delicious! Its perfect for a first timer like me!

All in all, we had a great festive weekend. Ending with the best sweet treat ever for this time of year!

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Sorry for the quality of the pictures by the way, they were taken on the iphone!

Have you done anything Halloween related yet this year? Have you been to a haunted house or carved pumpkins?! Let me 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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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