5 Ways To Make Toronto (Or Any Big City) Feel Smaller

Nathan Philips Square at Toronto City Hall
Nathan Philips Square at Toronto City Hall

Ever feel like Toronto is getting too big, too busy, and too hard to get around? Well, you’re not alone. In 2016, the census metropolitan area of Toronto was almost 6 million and is growing at a faster rate than the national average. In fact, Toronto ranks as North America’s 4th largest city in terms of population, according to the Economic Intelligence Unit, after Mexico City, New York, and Los Angeles.

I love living in a big city. There are always new exhibitions to see, restaurants to try, and quaint neighborhoods to discover. In fact, I often feel there are so many options to choose from, and that I miss out on some fantastic opportunities because I just can’t be in two places at the same time!

One of the things that I’d like to share more with you, the readers of my blog, is how to live slow and intentionally. I didn’t realize there was a term for how I like to live. I’m an emotional person, love connecting with people, and tend to overthink things. But I also appreciate all the things life has to offer, the big and the small, the material and the immaterial. I like being alone as much as I like being with others. And, I like walking outside as much as I can, enjoying nature and just feeling a part of the world. Yes, even in a big city, you can experience much of mother nature. Continue reading


Cirque du Soleil and Content Creation

Cirque du Soleil's Luzia at the Toronto Port Lands
Cirque du Soleil’s Luzia at the Toronto Port Lands

Let’s face it: we all crave new content constantly, be it on TV, at the movies, eating out, shopping, or traveling.  Our attention span is low and we want to be doing or experiencing ‘the latest’ – a result of the (social media) world we live in.

Furthermore, with limited time, we are pickier about where and how we spend our dollars and our free time.

Having said that, this week when my daughter and I went to watch one of Cirque du Soleil’s newest shows, Luzia, in Toronto, I knew that the company had to have made some serious changes for me to be impressed.  Cirque du Soleil did not disappoint!

It’s been ten years since we saw a Cirque du Soleil show and a lot has changed.

When we saw Corteo in 2006, it was a show of talent with beautiful costumes. The acts were more classically circus-like with juggling, hand-balancing, vaulting, and tightroping.  This time around, Luzia has progressed to a Cirque du Soleil show with more insightful interpretations and deeper meaning to the acts.

Screen Shot 2016-08-04 at 9.44.49 PMLuzia is ‘a waking dream of Mexico’, focusing on the migration of the monarch butterfly from Canada to Mexico and on Mexico’s architecture, mythology, and climate.  The show has a Broadway-like feel in terms of the costumes and stage sets.  This isn’t your old-fashioned circus, not that Cirque ever was that; it is more about visually understanding the creative nuances via the costumes and acts.  It is also more dance-oriented in some segments with a ballet-like feeling. Continue reading


A Summer Staycation in Toronto

CN Tower, Harbour Front Centre, Rogers Centre
CN Tower, Harbour Front Centre, Rogers Centre

In August 2015, the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) ranked Toronto the 4th most liveable city in the world – a position Toronto has held for several years now.

The EIU ranking is based on 30 factors in five areas and includes stability, healthcare, environment, and education.  Living in Toronto, we know how blessed we are.  So, when my husband took one week off of work, we knew that a staycation would be perfect!

A staycation is a vacation that is spent sleeping at one’s home while enjoying activities that are within driving distance.  Having spent the better part of two weeks in June traveling to four different cities, we were grateful to sleep in our own beds by night while going out by day.

We had three simple goals: sleep in, eat out, and do some tourist-y things!

Although this post is Toronto-based, I am sure that you can find similar activities to fill a day, a weekend or a week long staycation in your home town.  Do a search on local festivals and happenings (blogto.com is my favorite for Toronto).

Continue reading