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Tag: Toronto

Legoland – It’s Our Turn Now!

Lego is truly a toy to entertain across the generations. I love watching my three boys – the dad, the teen, and the schoolager all bonding over their building projects. Actually, our Lego collection itself spans the generations, including bricks that Hubs played with as a boy, right up through sets bought for the boys over the last couple of decades. When a new set or series is announced, I think Hubs is even more excited than the 7 year-old.

Resort Village LEGOLAND Feriendorf, Günzburg, Germany - Booking.com

For grown-ups like my big boys, LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Toronto will be holding a series of adult only evenings, beginning on May 29, 2013. For these events, the centre will open its doors to give adult visitors a chance to leave the kids at home and reconnect with their own childhoods. In conjunction with Superhero movies like Iron Man 3, Man of Steel and The Wolverine coming out this summer, the first adult only night will be Superhero themed.

Adult night will take place from 6:00 – 9:00 pm, and tickets can be purchased online for $15 or at the door for $19. In addition to the café and LEGO shop, guests will have access to the LEGO Factory Tour, MINILAND, Kingdom Quest laser ride, Merlin’s Apprentice and the 4D Cinema. LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Master Model Builder, Graeme Dymond will lead building challenges throughout the evening. Each of the activities in the attraction will be set up to win prizes, including a Superhero scavenger hunt in MINILAND, Kingdom Quest High Score Challenge and a Superhero vehicle building competition at the Build and Test racetrack.

Adult Night’s will also feature fun, interactive games and photo opportunities. On May 29, there will be a costume theme and all guests are encouraged to come dressed as their favourite superhero and take action shot photos in front of a green screen to win a prize! Voting for Best Dressed and Best Builds will take place at 8:00 pm, with winners being announced at 8:30 pm.

On the grown-up event dates, LEGOLAND Discovery Centre will be open to the public during the day, with the last admission being at 4:00 pm, and adults’ night beginning at 6:00 pm. Only those 18 years of age or older will be granted access after 6:00 pm.

I’m not sure the costume theme would appeal to Hubs or the Teen, but the chance to get kid-free access to the Legoland Discovery Centre for an evening of building certainly would. These evenings will provide a wonderful opportunity for any grown-ups without kids to experience the Centre, as unaccompanied adults are not normally admitted.

Find Your New Best Friend – Mega Pet Adoption Weekend in Toronto June 5-7 #adoptlove

Just look at that face! How could I not fall in love at first sight! This is our precious pup, Maxi. Regular readers will know her well. We adopted her through the OSPCA 2 years ago, and she has become an integral member of our family. She is loving and playful, and sometimes a little skittish. She likes to visit the off-leash park to make friends with other pups, and she loves to sneak into the laundry room to eat the cat’s dinner. Like everyone, she has a mix of good and bad traits ??

101 Best Friend Quotes - Short Quotes About Best Friends

Maxi had been surrendered to the OSPCA because her owners could no longer care for her. We visited because we were looking to fill a hole in our family. It was a match made in heaven.

Pets have always been important to me, and I adore having my furry babies in my life. If you are in the GTA and ready to make the commitment to a new four-legged friend, I strongly encourage you to check out the Mega Pet Adoption Weekend happening Friday-Sunday this week at the CNE grounds.

In its second year, this event is hosted by the Toronto Humane Society and Toronto Animal Services, proudly sponsored by PetSmart Charities of Canada and PetSmart, and will involve a number of animal welfare agencies from across the GTA. For just $25 you can bring home a new family member who will be spayed or neutered and vaccinated. Standard pet licensing fees apply to City of Toronto residents.
“Each year more than 15,000 animals enter GTA shelters. During these three days we hope to find 600 of them new forever homes. Anyone who is considering adding a pet to their family should join us and see for themselves the amazing animals available for adoption,” said Barbara Steinhoff, Executive Director, Toronto Humane Society.

What: Mega Pet Adoption Weekend
Who: Adoptable pets from local animal
welfare organizations, including Toronto Humane Society and Toronto Animal
Services

Spokespeople from PetSmart
Charities of Canada and PetSmart will also be on-site

When: Friday, June 5 – Sunday, June 7,
2015

10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Where: Queen Elizabeth Building on the
grounds of the Canadian National Exhibition

 

“Adopting a new companion is a rewarding decision, one that will bring a lot of joy and create memories to last a lifetime,” said John DeFranco, President, PetSmart Charities of Canada. “Through partnerships, such as those with the Toronto Humane Society and Toronto Animal Services, we’re able to find forever homes for even more pets.”

 

So, are you ready? Your new best friend may just be waiting for you at the CNE grounds this weekend.

Float Your Way to Relaxation at the Rest Nest Float Club

When the stresses of everyday life start to get too much, we may turn to such treatments as massage therapy, or maybe try meditation or yoga. Actually, we should be investing the time and effort to protect ourselves with these treatments and activities before stress gets overwhelming. An ounce of prevention and all that. Am I right? I was recently invited to try out a new, relaxing spa treatment here in Toronto at the Rest Nest Float Club . What is floating? Well, a little bit of heaven is my answer to that.

What I wish I knew before my first float – Palm Ave Float Club ...

 

Floating is about eliminating sensory input to allow total relaxation. Alone in a private pod, within a private room, you float in 10 inches of water and dissolved magnesium salts. There is no sound, and there can be no light. The water is set at body temperature, so you even cease to feel that after a while. No inputs. No efforts. Total relaxation. Sensory deprivation in the best of ways.

The Rest Nest is a brand new location, extremely clean and comfortable, with lots of light and great atmosphere. There is reception and a seating area on the ground floor, with an attendant desk, lounge, lockers, and treatment rooms upstairs. Complimentary tea and water are provided and guests are encouraged to take the time to slowly ease back into their day after their float. There’s even free wi-fi! Rest Nest has three float pods, each in its own treatment room with a private shower. The treatment area is separated from the main room by a closed door to dampen sound, although each room is itself fairly soundproof. This experience is all about tranquility.

Now, I am claustrophobic, so I was initially hesitant to try this treatment. What would it be like in the pod? How hard is it to open? Will I feel trapped? The owner reassured me and suggested that I could always try with the pod open at first and then lower the lid when/if I felt comfortable doing so. I’m trying to test my limits lately (like wall climbing!) so I went for it. And it really wasn’t claustrophobic at all. The pods are quite large and I could sit up comfortably in them with plenty of room to spare. That tiny little opening under the lid doesn’t look like much, but it’s ample for air flow. The lid itself is easy to lift and lower with one hand so I never felt trapped.

The pod is filled with about 10 inches of extremely salt water. You will float with absolutely no difficulty. It feels very secure and comforting. You can choose to float in total darkness, or use one of the softly coloured light options, via a button inside. The pod is also outfitted with a spray bottle of unsalted water and a clean cloth, in case you get the salt in your eyes.The red button in the picture is a “panic” button, just in case you have a problem or start to freak out. It sends a signal to the attendant who will immediately come and check on you. They haven’t had anyone press that button yet though ??

How was my experience? I honestly loved it. I will say though that the first session felt a little strange and it wasn’t so easy to let myself relax. I had one moment of worry, not really panic, during my first visit. I had put the lid fully down after a few minutes, and that was fine. But then I turned out the lights. I felt wonderful, even opening my eyes to fully appreciate the complete darkness. And then I started to THINK. Wrong. This experience is about letting go and clearing your mind and relaxing. And when I started to think, I realised I no longer knew which way I was facing in the pod. Was I near the button for the light? What if I pushed the panic button instead? Could I find where to push up on the lid? All of these thoughts were pretty silly really, because I just had to sit up and feel the curve of the lid to orient myself. I was completely safe. I found the light, turned it on and enjoyed the rest of my session. On my second visit I was much more prepared, and I even managed to reach a sort of trance state in the pod, not quite asleep, but not quite awake either. And in total dark for the whole session.

 

Mentally, the float helped me to empty my mind and give up my stressors for at least a short time. Physically, the float eased my muscle aches, relaxed my body, and gave me an overall sense of well-being. I came out feeling fabulous, and the benefits lasted for days. Honestly, even looking at the image of the open pod above helps me to relax.

Bottom line – this one gets my strong recommendation. But promise me that if you try it, you won’t give up if you aren’t sold after your first float. The experience is so different than anything you’ve likely done before it does take a little adjusting. My first float was great, and I didn’t leave with a negative feeling at all, but it wasn’t all it could be. My second I was able to give in to the relaxation more easily and the experience was incredible.

The Rest Nest Float Club is located in the downtown neighbourhood of Yorkville, at 21 Yorkville Ave. There are numerous parking garages in the area, including one just down the block. On-street parking is available but extremely limited. The location does offer so many options for lunch or shopping before or after your treatment, so make a day of it if you can. Float sessions are 60 minutes long, and cost $100 per, or 3 sessions for $240. You can also buy a membership with one float each month at a cost of $80 monthly. So the costs are about the same as a massage.

Keep in touch with Rest Nest on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. Happy floating!!

Disclosure: I received complimentary treatments to facilitate this review. All opinions on this blog, as always, remain my own.

HGG2012 – Space Chums (CD)

More fun kids’ music on the gift guide today! Little Boo and I recently had a listen to the new CD from Toronto-based children’s entertainers, the Space Chums!, and I’m delighted to share it with you now.

 

The Space Chums! are Disco-Cosmonaut Nickolai, Space Ninja Linda, Galacto-Fashionista Gussy and Bleep Bloop their robot drummer. They have recently arrived from outer space and are on a mission to discover planet earth with the help of their young earthling fans “who know a thing or two about a thing or three.” Their CD is titled “Blast Off!” and includes 10 high-energy, dance-able tracks. I say we had “a listen,” but actually we put the CD on repeat and listened about 4 times through in the car.

 

Little Boo and I each had our own favourites. I’m a big fan of “Beeble Bop,” which is basically a silly and funny, speeding up song. LB really got into the groovy “Crazy Moves,” acting out the lyrics with his crazy booster seat dancing. “I got crazy arms, watch me dancin’, dancin’. I got crazy arms, watch me dance!” There’s also some fun rhyming action in “Word Wizard,” where Disco-Cosmonaut Nickolai proves his prowess by rhyming even the prehistoric word icthyosaurus. You’ll have to listen to hear how he does it ??

Kids’ music that is fun, upbeat, and pleasing to adult ears is always a welcome addition to our home. Music that gets you moving and grooving together as a family is a great idea for holiday giving. If you’d like to check out “Blast Off!” for yourself, you can stream it on the Space Chums website for a preview. You can support the group and purchase this album online at CDBaby.com, either as a physical copy or an MP3 download. (Songs can be purchased individually as well.) The physical CD comes with a sticker sheet for some extra fun.

 

 

A Giveaway

The Chums have kindly provided a copy of their intergalactic CD (with stickers!) as a giveaway for one of you lucky readers. Entries are via the Rafflecopter widget below and will be accepted until 12:00 midnight EST on December 7. Open to Canadian residents only.

 

Best of luck!

Come Get Creative at the Toronto Mini Maker Faire Sept. 21-22 #MMFTO

Are you looking for something a little different to enjoy with the kids this coming weekend? Well, there’s a really neat event happening in Toronto, at Wychwood Barns (St. Clair and Bathurst – easily accessible by TTC!) The Toronto Mini Maker Faire takes place Saturday and Sunday, September 21-22, and will bring together innovators, artists and hackers from all over the GTA to participate in Toronto’s greatest show and tell!

Home | Tourism Toronto

This interactive event will introduce GTA families to dozens of “makers,” ready to show off their projects and involve you in a variety of activities and workshops. There’ll be robots, 3D printing (even with chocolate!), upcycled creations, scupltures, laser tag, and more. You can see the line-up of participating makers here.

Toronto Mini Maker Faire and Hacklab Toronto paper airplane competition at Pedestrian SundayPhotos by Pam Lau
Do you have a creative kid on your hands? Or maybe you’re a back-yard inventor yourself? This event is for you!
Ticket Information
Ticket prices are currently discounted by 50%, just for a limited time!
Head over today to purchase through Eventbrite!
Adult per day: $12.50 (regular $25)
Student/Senior/Unwaged per day: $7.50 (regular $15)
Child (6-12 years) per day: $4 (regular $8)
Sunday Family Pass (2 adults, up to four children): $30
Children 5 and under are free.

Follow the Faire on Twitter at @MakerFaire_TO #MMFTO, or join them on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/MakerFaireToronto to keep up to date on all the happenings!

Disclosure: I received complimentary event tickets to thank me for helping to promote the Faire. All opinions on this blog, as always, remain my own.