MUN Botanical Garden

Have you ever heard the saying “You look but you don’t see”? I find I have done this a lot in St. John’s. I think you get comfortable in the areas of town you usually frequent and you live life repetitively. And in doing so, you miss so many opportunities to really enjoy the little things this city has to offer and maybe some big ones too!IMG_6239

Yesterday, I came across a small ad for the MUN Botanical Garden on Mount Scio Rd……now there’s somewhere I hadn’t been in a long time. I often drive by it but never stop. But this week, they are having free lunchtime seminars from 12:00 to 1:00 pm covering a host of topics, so off I went today to learn all about composting!

 

What a great little seminar. In one hour, I learned all I needed to know abIMG_6231out making my very own compost and the benefits it would bring to my garden. Plus, it turns out that years ago when the city and MMSB joined to promote composting with a reduced rate on bins, it was a bit of a disaster as people didn’t understand how to compost and ended up creating smelly bins that attracted rodents. Now, they require you participate in an Information Session like I did today before you are allowed to purchase a bin and today, plus other days this month, they are selling them at a reduced rate to participants. The traditional bin you can purchase at the reduced rate of $40.00, is on the Lee Valley Tool site for over $150.00, now that’s a deal.

I am an avid gardener and am always open to learning something new, especially as our province provides gardening challenges. The thought of turning my household garbage and garden leaves into rich soil has me inspired and I have purchased the traditional compost bin and the new model, The Tumbler! I was impressed to discover that the whole of the Botanical Garden has been created with their own compost. Now there’s something to aspire to.

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The traditional compost bin

For the rest of the week, the topics include:

Tuesday: Plants for the Sensory Garden, Wednesday: Choice Vegetables for a Newfoundland Garden, Thursday: Vermicomposting, Friday: Planting a Hanging Basket.

Great time, short and sweet but very well done and easily fit into a lunchtime slot if you are pressed for time. I highly recommend.

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Who would have thought this was once wild woody forest. Still asleep but signs of spring are there!

Rate: *****

Cost: Nil

Do something spontaneous!

Sunday morning, nice and easy, no deadlines, no rush. It was a beautiful sunny day and I thought “What a perfect day to spend in the garden…I’ll just browse the internet while I drink my coffee”……. And there it was. An ad for a new nail salon.

Have to say, I amIMG_6046 a sucker for being pampered, who isn’t? So off Carol-Ann and I went to Nails Time.

It was your typical quick and easy salon but I have to say, I was impressed with the quality of the service and the friendly staff. We both had a manicure and pedicure and as “first tiIMG_6047me visitors” were given a complimentary paraffin treatment. They possibly have the best selection of polish I have ever seen and our services were extremely well done. Seated in a massaging pedicure chair, beIMG_6044ing given a hot stone massage as part of the pedicure, I thought I was in heaven!

The salon is very clean and tidy and it is evident they are taking precautions to ensure the services and equipment are clean and sterile.

Lawn? Was I going to rake the lawn? Oh well, I guess there’s always tomorrow!

Rate **** 1/2

Price ***IMG_6049

The Fifth Ticket

Once known as The Social Club, the Fifth Ticket claims to have a brand new vibe with the same great food offering more selection.

St. John’s only Piano Bar, the Dining Room and the Chef’s Table for private 5 course meals, all combine to provide “internationally inspired comfort food.” IMG_4921
downloadFriday night, April 1st is Comedy Night featuring “Dont Panic: A night of Story-Telling, Song, and Stand-Up.

Carol-Ann and I will be there, stay tuned for our review!

Tickets $10.

171 Water Street. St. John’s

 

Flower Studio Spring Bulb Workshop

I am quite remiss in posting….I apologize, life just seems to hurtle along at breakneck speed sometimes.

The lateness though, has no reflection on the absolutely wonderful time I had at the Flower Studio’s Spring Workshop…it was pure heaven!

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If you’ve never been to the Studio….go….. even if it’s to just walk in the front door and breathe in the absolute bliss of a zen moment. It’s in a class of its own which you feel as soon as you walk through the door. Classic, edgy and creative IMG_5546design oozes from the decor and into the limitless floral arrangements that surround you. Accents and unique indoor/outdoor garden suggestions will tempt you or at least inspire you.

The evening workshop (7-9 pm) was an intimate group of 5 and hosted by the Studio’s owner and Principal Designer and his Guest Designer, Nicholas Smith who had flown in from Toronto to give the seminar. Nicholas demonstrated 3 completely different types of floral designs using a myriad of flowers and accent pieces and went into amazing detail on the intricacies of each type of flower, its requirements and particular characteristics and why something worked and why it didn’t. I don’t consider myself a novice in flora but I learnt A LOT!

We were then sent out into the world of choice and selection! What impressed me, was that nothing was off-limits. They had pots laid aside for us to use but if we saw one on the shelf that we liked better, we were more than welcome to use that. There were fresh flowers everywhere, pots and pots overflowed with colour, texture and beauty. We were set free and encouraged to use what spoke to us, inspired us and to just dive in and create our masterpieces.

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I was also very impressed with the quality of the flowers. Not your typical selection of Roses, Carnations and Lilies  in the basic colours but Orchids, Tulips, Orchids, Hyacinths, Gerbera Daisies and  Iris to name a few in the most fabulous colours, shapes and sizes….and fresh!! How many of us have grabbed a bunch of happy looking flowers from the supermarket or like, only to have them a wilting, drab blob the next day. All the flowers we saw looked like they had just been brought in from the garden and in fact, they get daily shipments of flowers that have been picked less than 24 hours prior. My arrangement, 4 weeks old and minus only a couple of flowers, is still beautiful, welcoming people into my porch!

All in all, a great evening! One I certainly will do again and again. I highly recommend you sign up for a workshop but do it quickly as they fill up extremely fast!

My Creation!

Rating:  *****

Price: $$$

 

 

 

2 Legit to Quit

I have to admit, I have never been to an event at the LSPU Hall…..bring on something new to try!

I was surprised and quite impressed with the quality of the Hall. Great seating with a professional stage, acoustics and lighting. A bar off the lobby provided a place to gather prior to the show and a great opportunity to mingle during intermission and after the production.

2 Legit 2 Quit will transport you back to the classically-influenced roots of 2LegitPoster-smaller (1)musical theatre” was the quote. 5 performers made up the cast, each one with their own distinct singing style. Each song was sung with enthusiasm and I applaud the performers for the obvious effort they had put into their production.

But I did find that for me, it was in some way lacking. Was it that the songs weren’t really familiar to me? Was it the style of the music? I love musical theatre and I had expectations of what I was going to see but maybe what I expected wasn’t what the intention of the production was. All I know is I wasn’t “transported.”

I give A for effort but I take a pass on “2 Legit to Quit” but I do look forward to trying something else at the LSPU!

Rating:  **

Single $20

 

Coming this week! Spring Bulb Design Workshop

I don’t know about you but even with the lack of snow, I can’t wait for spring! I’m going to get a dose of it Wednesday night at the Flower Studio’s workshop “Spring Bulb Design”

Woo hoo! I can just smell the blossoms now!! Check back and read my review!

“Our design workshops showcase a variety img_2683 2of design skills taught by Flower Studio’s principal designers or special guest designers from other regions. Classes start with teaching of design principles and demonstrations, followed by participants creating their own beautiful design using the season’s freshest florals and foliages.”

Wednesday, Feb 24th 7:00-9:00pm

 

Best Laid Plans

To garner content for our inaugural post, Carol-Ann and I decided to make a full night of it. Dinner downtown followed by an art unveiling at the Rooms and finishing the evening with the reception after party being held at the Eastern Edge Gallery. Ambitious? Oh yes!

We decided to eat at The Adelaide Oyster House, a spot neither of us had yet visited and all our ‘best laid plans’ came to a screaming halt as we began and ended our night at this fabulous spot. The Adelaide and chef Steve Vardy, have received many accolades since opening their doors in 2014 and for me, it didn’t disappoint.

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I’m all about decor and I loved the industrial lighting with filament bulbs which cast a comfortable yellow hue throughout. The dark wood and brick interior with metal accents makes the small space very intimate yet hip at the same time.

Have a table for two or up to six or sit at the bar in the midst of all the action and enjoy the music which is loud but they offer no apology, it’s as rockin’ as is the pace in the kitchen.

The food is based on small portions, meant for tasting or sharing which allows you to try several dishes and I highly encourage you to! It comes to your table as it is ready and keeps the servers hopping. Every dish we tried was a hit, beautifully presented with a delicious medley of flavours and was just enough that you decide you will definitely be back.  To accompany, the drink offerings included craft beer, well-made classic cocktails and a pleasing wine selection.

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An evening at The Adelaide Oyster House is a great option for a full night; grab a table, have a glass of wine, and spend the night sampling, one delicious plate at a time. Overall, a great night out.

Price point: $120.00 for two which included 4 dishes and a bottle of wine.

Rating: ****

 

The Adelaide Oyster House

334 Water Street, St. John’s NL

(709) 722-2222

Open Tuesday-Sunday 5pm until close.