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Sunday, May 20, 2012

The Canadian Tulip Festival

This Mother's Day my family had made plans for my grandparents to come up to Ottawa to see us. They usually don't come into Ottawa too often, so we thought it would be a good idea for them to experience The Canadian Tulip Festival.

The Canadian Tulip Festival is a celebration born out of the Second World War when Canada helped to liberate the Dutch and provided a safe refuge for the royal family. As a show of thanks, the Dutch Royal Family gifted Ottawa with 100,000 tulip bulbs in 1945, and continued to gift over one thousand bulbs each year until 1980.

Over 300,000 tulips are planted for festival which brings in visitors and guests from all over the world. My grandparents had never been to The Canadian Tulip Festival, so we took them to Commissioners Park where some of the best tulip displays are located. The location didn't disappoint; most of the tulips were protected from the wind and in full bloom. As well, the weather was mild which allowed us to stay out for a few hours to take pictures.

I think the grandparents enjoyed it. Afterwards we headed back to our house for some dinner and Mother’s Day celebrations. My grandfather had brought a really rich chocolate cake from Montreal to eat for dessert. We got both mothers – my mother and grandmother – to cut the cake together.

Happy Mother’s Day!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Early Spring in the Ravine

Meet Stef, one of my best friends. She's one of the few reasons that I'm glad to be back in Ottawa at present. 

Stef and I are pretty old friends; we first met in middle school, and became quite close in high school when we started playing on the same ultimate frisbee team. Stef, like me, went to the University of Guelph after she graduated from high school. She helped introduce me to many amazing people in Guelph.

I'm really excited to have Stef for the summer. She's going to law school in September, but in the meantime she'll be living and working back in Ottawa. Stef recently just got back from a long trip spent travelling and voluteering in India (which she blogged here). The two of us can really relate in terms of feeling uncomfortable being back in Ottawa.

Thankfully, Stef is another nature lover and she's always down for a hike or walk outside. We've already started exploring the ravine near my house despite the rainy and wet weather. It's the perfect conditions for me to play with my new camera; there's all sorts of moss and fungus to capture. 

I'm really excited about this duo. Hopefully Stef and I can get ourselves out of the house more often.