This week is my fall break, and Monday and Tuesday Tom had break as well. So since our trip to Athens fell through we decided to head up to Toronto. I have been wanting to go for a while, and since we had the time we decided to go for it. Remembering the family we met at the Peter Whitmer farm I e-mailed them to see if we could meet up with them at church on Sunday. Eric responded:
“It would be better if you come here on Friday Oct. 19 @ night or midnight, or early morning Saturday October20 and stay the weekend until Tuesday Morning.
October 20, Saturday
– Tour Toronto, Burlington and nearby towns
October 21, Sunday
October 22, Monday
– Tour Niagara on the lake and Niagara Falls
– Dinner with the Family to Celebrate Amber’s 16th
October 23, Tuesday
Head back to Cleveland”
So that’s what we did! We had such a great time. Saturday we enjoyed driving through Toronto the city is remarkably clean and I was impressed by the creative architecture. Buildings are going up everywhere, the city is really thriving. After taking plenty of pictures in front of the CN tower, we walked to the ferry and headed across Lake Michigan to Ward Island. We had a lovely picnic lunch and enjoyed the quaint and quiet island. We enjoyed watching the sail boats, playing on the beaches, climbing trees, and park toys, and marveling at the Toronto skyline away from the hustle and honking of the city. The houses were small and nearly storybook like. The air was crisp and clean. We headed back to Birmingham, where they live, to go out to eat at this wonderful Mediterranean restaurant. The food was delicious and the company- sublime!
Sunday, Tom and I played and sang “Our Saviour’s Love” for Sacrament, as the Acorda’s had requested I sing. It went fine, but not fantastic, so I was more than slightly surprised when some 30 people throughthe next two hours came up and complimented me and asked about my training and such. Basically it was probably the kindest ward I have ever visited. I enjoyed hearing the accents from around the world. They have members from Poland, Germany, South Africa, Philippines, China, India and many other countries in their ward! What a wonderful mix. We spent the afternoon, cooking and eating a wonderful Philippine dish, playing games, reading scriptures, and just enjoying the family atmosphere. As we knew we would be leaving before we had a chance to celebrate Erika’s 16th birthday, we decided to make her a cake while she was gone at a fireside. So together Denise, 10, and I made a delicious three-tiered chocolate chip cake. Erika was thrilled and surprised, they don’t traditionally make cakes for birthdays in their house. We played several LOUD games of spoons, and had a beautiful session of family scripture reading.
Monday Erika and Myrna took off work to take Tom and I to this beautiful Town near Niagara Falls called Niagara on the Lake. The weather was beautiful, warm and colorful. The town was filled with interested shops- we particularly enjoyed the fudge shop!
We visited a couple art galleries, and walked along the lake. We visited an old Fort and stopped at some stunning look outs. At that point we split from our new family and headed for the Prime Outlet Malls that they had highly recommended. They are just across the borders in Northern Buffalo. Tom and I spent the rest of the afternoon shopping. Surprisingly we bought a lot. Both of us needed some updates on our wardrobes (Tom not necessarily and update but a wardrobe period- wink wink). I have only been to the outlet malls in North Bend. There were many more stores in this outlet. Our particular favorites were Gap, Anne Taylor, Marshalls, Aeropostale (where I got 4 shirts for under 10 dollars!) and Sketchers. The sales were great and I found it much more exciting to have smaller stores and just more of them. The last time we went shopping it was in a regular mall and I didn’t enjoy it much. Perhaps in a future post I’ll fulfill Mary’s request and show some pictures of my exciting finds. Perhaps.
(To see a few more pictures, we have them posted on a new Album under “Photos”- Enjoy!)