Tag Archives: Sunday

Rock Dunder

This weekend, we went on a drive along Hwy 15 to a little place just north of Seeley’s Bay called Rock Dunder. We’ve been going on short drives every weekend lately, and with the beautiful weather we had, it was necessary that we spend some time outside. Part of the Rideau Waterway Land Trust, Rock Dunder is a wonderful place for a hike.

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We’d already gotten a few pointers from those who had gone before us (i.e. the turn off is really easy to miss, so if you pass the Morton sign, you’ve gone too far), so we were pumped and ready to go. Upon first arriving at the site, it was pretty unassuming. We parked in the tiny lot (which was at full capacity with about 10 cars), made sure we had our sunscreen, and headed off.

We walked along the Cabin trail (green on the map) – a really easy stroll through some wood, towards the water. Arriving at Cabin 1, we encountered two nice ladies who doused themselves in Off! Unfortunately, we were not as prepared. More on that later.

This is where we begin the Summit Loop (orange on the map). Between Cabin 1 and Cabin 2, the terrain gets a little more hilly, but there are a number of lookouts where you can take a rest. This also comes with a number of beautiful views of the bay and the lucky individuals who happen to have cottages on the surrounding land.

The last leg up to the lookout was fairly strenuous, with lots of climbing and some pretty steep sections. We attempted to run up some of these parts, only to leave ourselves quite winded. As we got closer, the land levelled out, and when we happened upon the large sheets of rock, we knew we had made it.

The view was incredible, and we certainly didn’t mind sharing it with the dozen or so people that were also at the lookout.

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There were people having picnics, others doing wall climbs, and still others just taking pictures or resting. It felt like we were on top of the world.

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Though we had been instructed (prior to the day) to return the way we came, we decided to venture out and finish the rest of the loop. This is where things went south.

This stretch of the loop back to the parking lot was longer…and muddier…and full of mosquitoes. It alternated between wooded areas and open rock faces, and there were definitely many sections that we ran through to avoid the bites of some blood-sucking companions.

So, an hour and 5.2 km later, we were back where we started. Granted, we were definitely more tired, and our shoes looked much worse, but it was a good time. We even left them a donation.

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So, that’s that for Rock Dunder. We rewarded ourselves with some ice cream, and resolved to come back again (with Off!).

 

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Chez Piggy

As much as it is nice to eat in for brunch like we shared about a little while ago, Kingston is a city that has no shortage of delicious places to eat out. Though we are trying to find more spots on the west end of town to dine at, there are tried and true establishments that remain in the downtown core.

This past Sunday, we went with our friends Gary and Joyce (their suggestion!) to Chez Piggy. Tucked away in a courtyard off Princess Street, this two-storey restaurant is absolutely quaint. We were seated upstairs in the loft, and throughout the meal, I dreamed about what it would be like to have a home that had as much character as this place. Kelvin and I had been to Chez Piggy together once for their Table d’hôte, and I had been once for a work lunch, but never had we been for brunch.

And let me tell you – Chez Piggy did not disappoint.

Gary and Kelvin both ordered the eggs benedict (sorry we didn’t take any pictures, and I couldn’t find the right ones online). I normally don’t like eggs benedict, but I would’ve eaten all of this. The eggs were just firm enough, and the sour dough didn’t get soggy at all.

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Joyce and I both got the undone omelette (I got this photo off the internet…I forgot to take one). Because we are both not a fan of runny egg yolk, we asked for them to harden up the sunny side eggs, which they did a wonderful job of. The manchego was the perfect cheese for this, the arugula was a nice touch.

The icing on the cake? The homefries. I kid you not, those homefries were delicious. With crispy onions scattered amongst them, this was the perfect complement to our eggs.

We finished our meal fully satisfied, evidenced by our clear plates and beaming faces. The portions were just right, and reflective of the price. This is a definitely a place I feel confident recommending.

Brunch

Usually Sundays are our unwind day. We’ll go to church in the morning and then we have small group or a Bible study at night. Those 6-7 hours in between are some of the most relaxing and, often, productive times that we have to do stuff around the house. Lately, and by lately I mean the past couple of months, we’ve been finding ourselves eating out for brunch quite a bit after church.

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Now that Gary and Joyce are regularly attending our church we’ve had some additions to the brunch table and we decided that we should try to eat in every so often.

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This past week we had our weekly brunch at Pat’s place. There was this crazy smorgasbord of waffles, breakfast casserole, bacon, fruit, and of course a cheese platter! Since joining our new small group at church I’ve realized how awesome cheese+fruit platters are and so at every “home” brunch I’ll try to put a simple platter out. I also tried making sangria for the first time. It did not turn out great. In hindsight I should have put more fruit juice (maybe try a lemonade next time) and less wine. Oh well!

Eating in Ottawa

A few weekends ago, a friend and I drove to Ottawa for a nice day trip. We headed straight to IKEA for some interior inspiration – for her new apartment, and for our too-small office space. It was wonderful, and I have my eye set on some vika alex desks and grundtal rails. We were starving and ate a quick meal of meatballs at their restaurant before blazing through the store.

Really wanted these sheets, but Kelvin was not so enthused by them

Now, as much as i love IKEA swedish meatballs, I must admit that they don’t leave you full for very long. We consulted my trusty urbanspoon app (thank you iPhone!) and settled on Oz Kafe for our dinner plans. We had some time to stroll along Elgin Street (though it was more like puddle jumping…in the rain), have a quick drink at the Lieutenant’s Pump, then hop over to the restaurant for their dinner service that started at 6 pm.

Now let it be known that for the most part, Kelvin and my dining experiences in Ottawa have been hit and miss. Some of the restaurants we’ve tried have been pretty brutal, including this one place in the market. That being said, we have found a few gems (ZaZaZa Pizza in the Glebe and Murray Street Grill and Side Door in Byward Market). Oz Kafe is a place that I will definitely be bringing Kelvin to next time we are in town.

On Sundays, they have only their snacking menu, which is a selection of food from their regular menu, plus a few specials that they add in. My friend and I ordered four dishes to share, and it was an explosion of delicious flavour with some Korean influence. We loved their Oz Poutine, which was a really interesting twist on the regular poutine, using scalloped potatoes and old cheddar (we got it with the duck). We also ordered the Taipei corn (grilled, spiced, with crushed peanuts…delicious) and the Beef Tataki (seared beef with two different dressings, which was still nice, but the least impressionable of the four dishes). The heartiest of all was their “Seoul Food”, which I venture to guess is a staple in their menu. The Korean version of a Mexican taco, this dish utilized (butter?) lettuce leaves as a shell to wrap up juicy sirloin strips, pickled veggies and kimchi. Spicy paste optional.

What makes this place amazing is their value (all this for under $30 including tax and tip) and their ability to serve such delicious food without making you feel like you’ll have a heart attack. It’s clean, refreshing, and definitely a place I will visit again.

Oz Kafé on Urbanspoon