Saturday, January 25, 2014


Deliberating by susanvg
Deliberating, a photo by susanvg on Flickr.
I became a widow last night. No- don't panic - it was part of a murder mystery. I played Mme Leclair, wife of the composer who was murdered in 1764. This is an unsolved case and some young Montreal musicians created a musical murder mystery around the story. This was a concert plus an attempt at solving the crime. - all speculation, of course as no one knows who actually did the dirty deed.

Music by Leclair

What a delightful evening! The music was so beautifully played by Infusion Baroque (Sallynee Amawat on baroque violin, Alexa Raine-Wright on baroque flute, Rona Nadler on harpsichord, and Camille Paquette-Roy on baroque cello). The scenario was written by Rona and Alexa. They all blow me away with their creativity and sense of fun. Brava!

Thursday, January 23, 2014


Sleeper by susanvg
Sleeper, a photo by susanvg on Flickr.
I love to find surprises in my city and I always appreciate finding public art. I noticed these sculptures last week while waiting for a bus and this week chose to go take a closer look. They are in Cabot Square. They are all by the artist, Robert Lorrain.


Oblivious to the frigid temperatures and snow, he sleeps on. I enjoyed walking around the square and discovering these pieces.


I was able to find the title of this one, L'Héroine d'Amérique. She stands at the corner, watching traffic go by.

Detail L'Héroine

I like her attitude. She stands tall against whatever she faces.


This horse looks like he took a mouthful of snow. He seems to be enjoying the weather. These are just a few of the sculptures in the square. I'll have to go back in the spring when some of the titles might be visible.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Online Teaching

photo by susanvg
photo, a photo by susanvg on Flickr.
I had the opportunity to watch my colleague as she taught a math class online. Her students are from across Quebec. The classes are small enough that she has a personal relationship with each student. She teaches (often flipped), mentors and encourages, passing on her love of math. I think I would have enjoyed math much more with a teacher like her, but also with the tools that are available now to play with mathematical concepts: geogebra, gizmos, even spreadsheets.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Dinner for Two

Dinner for Two

I love to sit down at the end of the day to a home cooked meal. Day-to-day cooking gets me down sometimes but I am fortunate in that my spouse and I share responsibilities. Sometimes I cook, sometimes he cooks and sometimes we cook together. Chopping, slicing, and other preparatory work doesn't feel like work when accompanied by conversation. And a few sips of wine help too ;-).

Thursday, January 16, 2014


St-Léon by susanvg
St-Léon, a photo by susanvg on Flickr.
I often pass this church on the way to and from various errands. It's one of many in this city that I have been in because of concerts held there. The art inside is quite astounding. It was done by Guido Nincheri. It includes frescos, carvings, stained glass windows.. I featured it once before here. If you want to learn more about the artist, check out the link from that blog post. To see more of the interior of the church go to Wikipedia.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014


Puddle by susanvg
Puddle, a photo by susanvg on Flickr.
I don't mind winter. In fact I love the bright sunny days and the fresh snow. This has not been the case for this winter. We have had very low temperatures followed by high (for winter) temperatures resulting in freezing rain, ice and then a real thaw. While it is nice to see these reflections and I don't complain about wearing fewer layers it really limits outdoor activities. No snowshoeing, even walking can be difficult as some streets are still icy and a definite lack of sunshine!. Bring on proper winter weather while the calendar says January!

Monday, January 13, 2014


Candlelight by susanvg
Candlelight, a photo by susanvg on Flickr.
This time of year I love the warmth of candlelight. It seems to chase away the chill of winter as it bathes the room in its glow. It makes an occasion of a simple dinner and entices me to linger over a meal. It is reminiscent of a simpler time when people gathered around the light and shared food and stories.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Wine and Whimsy

Relaxing by susanvg
Relaxing, a photo by susanvg on Flickr.
My spouse and I love to go out for dinner and La Gargote is a favourite restaurant. In winter it is cosy and welcoming. Located in an old building in Old Montreal, the restaurant has large wooden beams on the ceiling. A fireplace adds warmth to both the room temperature and the atmosphere. Food is always good and the personnel are always welcoming (the owner remembered us even though we only go there a couple of times a year).

In summer there is an outdoor terasse - a delightful spot and a totally different atmosphere.

Enjoying the Atmosphere

Guarding the spot where the tables once sat was this jaunty fellow. He watches carefully though I think he will be absent when we once again have a summer meal here!

Wednesday, January 8, 2014


Feasting by susanvg
Feasting, a photo by susanvg on Flickr.
I had several layers on as I went out for a walk. These squirrels took advantage of their fur tail coats as they feasted on the frozen fruit that had dropped from the trees.

A Frozen Feast

Feasting is more fun with a friend.

A fur tail jacket

Sometimes it's good to have a wind break along with the fur coat!

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Emily in Winter

Emily in Winter by susanvg
Emily in Winter, a photo by susanvg on Flickr.
No matter the weather, Emily Carr stands here (sculpture by Joe Fafard). It's interesting to see the effect of the snow. Everything is more stark and her features feel harsher. It really shows how lighting can change the mood.

See her in summer

Friday, January 3, 2014

Ready to Serve

Ready to Serve by susanvg
Ready to Serve, a photo by susanvg on Flickr.
Believe it or not, this was made mainly from leftovers. We made a Chinese fondue on New Year's Eve - a great way to slow down a meal and savour every morsel. We had a bit of leftover beef and lots of vegetables. We enjoy cooking together - we chopped and talked and then sat down for a feast.

You may notice a few changes on the blog - I have decided to keep a record of the books I am reading this year - with a few short annotations (there is a link at the top) and this month I am participating in a Mindful Writing Challenge - taking a few moments each day to be mindful about something and write about it. Comments there are welcome too!

Thursday, January 2, 2014

A Cold Start to the Year

Untitled by susanvg
Untitled, a photo by susanvg on Flickr.
Brrr - January 1 and the temperatures keep going down. On Tuesday I bundled up with several layers (long underwear is my friend) and walked to do my errands. With no wind it was bearable, but now...

And Colder

I just checked the weather site.

I don't think my many layers will suffice - too many layers and you can't move fast enough to stay warm! It's cozy in my home - (though I will venture out later by car to play music with friends) with a nice cup of coffee. 

Wishing all my friends, both those I know face to face and those I know virtually through their photographs and words good health in 2014. May you continue to spread the warmth of your friendship!