Our 3rd Annual Trip to Polarfest 2017 in Selwyn, Bridgenorth, Ennismore & Lakefield

Dorothy & I with our Polarfest HostsAlthough it is not yet ready to challenge Ottawa’s Winterlude or Winter Carnival in Quebec city, Selwyn’s Polarfest is growing and improving each year. Once again, this year, we were fortunate enough to be invited back by David and Judith, our gracious hosts, to check it out.

Our first stop was at the annual sleighride which is held at the Ennismore Community Centre.

Hardworking HorsesOur next stop was at the ice sculptures in Heritage Park in Bridgenorth where, last year, the mild weather almost melted everything away. This year, however, the climate was much more amenable. We learned that the opaque sculptures were made with ice cut from the lake, whereas the clear ones were hewn from manmade ice blocks.Bridgenorth makes a contribution to Canada's SesquicentennialIce Sculptor at WorkAn Ice Sculpted InukshukColoured ice-blocks





Every year when we come for the sculptures, we also drop by our local favourite store Garden Style. As you will note from the picture below they have a fantastic selection of unique items to spice up your home and/or garden

Garden Style

A cute store on Ward Street in Bridgenorth

As mentioned above, Polarfest is a collaboration of several local communities and the main location for the ice sculptures is in Lakefield.

A long and straight road

Lakefield is a short hop from Bridgenorth

Polarfest Ice Sculptures in Lakefield

One of the outstanding ice sculptures in Lakefield

Apart from the events of Polarfest, this area of Ontario has a lot to offer in any season. Below is a sample of what is to be found in and around Ennismore:

An idyllic snowscene

The beauty of winter is all around us.

Burning Houses

The setting sun makes houses across the lake appear on fire!

The grand finale of the weekend is the Polar Plunge which takes place on Sunday afternoon at the end of the causeway in Ennismore. Much as I would have liked to participate, I felt a duty to keep Dorothy company 😉

Polar Plunge at Bridgenorth

Getting Ready for an Icy Dip

Polar Plunge

You can view ALL of the pictures from this great weekend below:

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The King of Trumps

The Saga of Donald

The King of Trumps

There was once a pretender named Trump,
He was both sly AND as dumb as a stump.
Most people believed he could NEVER succeed!
But he’s POTUS now, so who is the chump?

Sure he’s both liar and creep!
Other magnates were NE’ER so cheap
But he pulled wool over eyes
with threats, promises and lies
And now he’s on top of the heap!

But now is no time for tears
and piling on probable fears.
Perhaps he won’t be that bad;
Just an insane passing fad?
After all it’s ONLY four years…

Our Backyard Makeover

Backyard Makeover

Silverstone Interlock Backyard Makeover


Although we have been enjoying it for the last few months now, I finally got around to putting together the video showing our renovated backyard and the process of the construction. The guys at Silverstone Interlock did a great job and made me realize that I would have been insane to even think about tackling it ourselves.

Even though we had several competing bids and Silverstone was not necessarily the lowest, we were nevertheless happy we went with them since they did a very professional job and the results speak for themselves. For those interested, the stone pavers came from Techo-Bloc and were from the Blu 60 series. The large tiles were the Slate Grey, smooth model and the accent stones were Galaxy, Onyx Black.

My biggest misgiving was the Armourstone Retaining Wall, since I had no concept of what this would look like in the finished product but we are very happy with the overall result. Check out the video below for a blow by blow rundown of the entire project.

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A Taste of the Ottawa Tulip Festival 2016

Ottawa Tulip Festival 2016

A carpet of Tulips

Well at least the frost advisory here in Ottawa of late doesn’t appear to have affected the Tulip Festival too negatively. In fact, apparently, they, (the tulips, not necessarily the people), like the cold and the blossoms will last longer because of it. The only problem is that it’s rather cold to spend too much time perusing them.

If you won’t have a chance to visit the festival yourself this year, you can get a flavour of the event from the following video:

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The gift of Scotch can be so much more than a bottle of Whisky!

Scotch Whisky and more especially Single Malt Scotch has become extremely popular lately. I myself only recently discovered the delights of the Scottish elixir. I used to think that Johnny Walker Black was as good as it gets but have come to realize that there is a whole world beyond the traditional blended whiskies.

If there is a Scotch Whisky lover that you want to buy the perfect gift for, then we have got some great suggestions for you that have been personally selected by a self-professed aficionado:

Glenkinchie 12 Year Old Single Malt Scotch WhiskyOf course, the most obvious gift is to actually give a bottle of the Scottish liquid gold itself. However, this might not be as easy as it sounds unless you know your prospective recipient’s proclivities where Scotch is concerned and you yourself are somewhat of an expert on the topic as well. Pictured here is one of my personal favourites and which I did receive as a Christmas gift this year because I specifically requested it. It is a Single Malt from a distillery in the lowland district very close to Edinburgh and has a light and fruity taste. I first tasted this particular Scotch at the Whisky Experience on the Royal Mile in Edinburgh and immediately fell in love with it. However, it would likely not be everyone’s first choice!

Of course, you would not usually send a gift of Scotch in the mail and in many, if not most, jurisdictions, you can not have liquor delivered from an online merchant, so perhaps you are looking for something different for your Scotch lover (not Scottish lover)  🙂



The World Atlas of Whisky

The World Atlas of Whisky by Dave Broom

Dave Broom’s World Atlas of Scotch Whisky was another item that we put on our Amazon.com wishlist. There is a dizzying array of self-professed Scotch ‘Bibles’ available online but after a little research we settled on this one! So far, it did not disappoint and it makes a great ‘coffee table’ book! If you want to see some more just enter ‘Whisky Book’ into the Amazon search box in the sidebar and you will be directed to your local Amazon site with all the potential books on display!

Terroforma Whisky Stones

Put a chill in your whisky without diluting the dram of your dreams!

Although you might not want to get stoned drinking your Single Malt, these whisky stones might be just what you need to cool your favourite brew to ‘room temperature without diluting it. I was given this particular set as a Christmas gift this year and have already used them several times. Once again, putting whisky stones in our search box will show you the entire array of product available…



Scotch Whisky Glasses

This was certainly one of the more individual gifts that I received this holiday season and one that shows that you don’t have to spend a lot of money to buy a unique gift. Of course it is probably only appropriate when the giftee has a Scottish handle with a specific clan tartan as is my case. These particular glasses came from the Scottish and Irish Store Ottawa. They are not specifically Scotch glasses but rather for cocktails and hi-balls but I don’t think even the most abstemious Scotch drinker would complain if you served a goodly portion of his or her favourite Single Malt in them. If you are local to Ottawa, you might want to check out these stores since they have much to offer to lovers of Scotland.

Glencairn Whisky Glasses

Glencairn Crystal Whisky Glass (Set of 6)If you want to offer something different and unique but can’t find the Clan glasses featured above you might want to consider these authentic crystal goblets which are identical to those used at the Scotch Whisky Experience on Edinburgh’s Royal Mile. Indeed, we brought a couple of them home from our last trip because when you visit that locale and participate in the Scotch tasting, you are given the glass as a keepsake. I must say that it greatly enhances the enjoyment of tippling a wee dram! Of course there are many other styles available by using the Amazon search bar on the left.



Scotch Whisky Accessories

Scotch Whisky DecanterIf we still haven’t tickled your fancy then perhaps you should take a look at the entire range of other accessories by using the link above or searching on the Amazon site. Whatever you choose, we are sure that your gift will be well received!


Eeny Meeny now available on Amazon and in bookstores!

The Agnostic’s Creed

Eeny Meeny Miney Mo,

Umpteen Deities in a row,

Pick one, pray, and then you’ll know

If He’s the one to smite your foe!

Well, it took much less time than my first publishing attempt, but now Eeny Meeny is available for sale through a multitude of sales channels in either paperback or e-book editions.

Want to know more about the author Click here

See what other authors are saying about Eeny Meeny on Authonomy

If you would like to get your own copy in time for Christmas, here are the links for the different ways that you can get a copy

Amazon.ca – Kindle Edition

Amazon.com Kindle Edition or Paperback

Amazon.co.uk: Kindle Edition or Paperback

Amazon.de: Kindle Edition or Paperback

Amazon.fr: Kindle Edition or Paperback

Publisher Direct: Paperback Edition

You can also order the book from your local bookseller and even ask your library to get a copy in.

Title: Eeny Meeny: Proof that the Gods MUST be Crazy

Author: Roy Wallace

ISBN-13: 978-1481072816

ISBN-10: 1481072811

Published by Wallace Business Group Inc.



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Ottawa Authors and Artisans Fair 2012

Ottawa Authors and Artisans Fair

I hope you won’t judge the quality of my writing by that of my photography. Unfortunately, my BB cellphone is showing its age and just is not up to the task of indoor shooting in low light. However, these shots, poor as they are will give you a taste of the Ottawa Authors and Artisans Fair that took place this past Sunday at the Jack Purcell Community Centre off Elgin Street.
Jack Purcell Community Centre
Unfortunately, the weather did not really cooperate and I entered the building during the tail-end of a nasty bout of freezing rain and wondered how this might have affected the turn-out. It seems that Ottawans in general and perhaps the literary crowd in particular, are a hardy bunch indeed because the place was a hive of activity!

Although I joined the Ottawa Independent Writers Group some months ago and have followed its Ottawa Meetup and Facebook pages with some regularity, this is the first event that I actually attended, having been too busy putting the finishing touches to my most recent publication: Eeny Meeny – Proof that the Gods MUST be Crazy.

Ottawa Authors and Artisans Fair

The first thing that struck me about this gathering was the sheer breadth and depth of the talent pool here. Almost every imaginable genre was represented from autobiography, local history and travel on the non-fiction side, to sci-fi, fantasy, detective, thriller, erotica and exotica and children’s book in fiction. If you could not find something to tickle your fancy here, you must be dead from the neck-up!

The second most noticeable facet of the meetup was the outgoing nature of almost all the exhibitors who were willing and eager to discuss the details of their work in a low-key non-threatening manner. Once they learned that you were a writer yourself, they were usually more than ready to share any hints and tips they deemed might be useful.

Deux Voiliers Publishing

All in all, this was a pleasant and informative experience and I will endeavour to become more involved with this group in future and will definitely be an exhibitor next year.

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Eeny Meeny: Proof that the Gods MUST be Crazy at home on Authonomy!

Many of my readers will already be aware that I have already published a cookbook, The Un-Cookbook: The Art of Cooking without Recipes, that is available in both hardback and softcover through booksellers and online as well as through the Kindle bookstore. N.B. Don’t forget that this makes a GREAT gift for Christmas or for any other time for that matter! (shameless plug 🙂 )

To quote Monty Python: “And now for something completely different!”

Eeny Meeny: Proof the the Gods MUST be Crazy

I am in the process of finalizing my second foray into the publishing world with the introduction of my newest work: Eeny Meeny: Proof that the Gods MUST be Crazy

This work is a witty, lighthearted and sometimes irreverent look at world religions, their foibles, idiosyncrasies and pitfalls through the eyes of a self-confessed and perhaps reluctant agnostic.

Here is a brief synopsis of the book:

After years of deep thought and consideration, I would wager that if God does indeed exist, He (She or It) must surely have a devilish sense of humor! The only thing that seems reasonable, for my part, other than total random chance, is that God was suffering from ennui and required some new distraction for a few thousand years! And thus, He established the game of ‘humanity’. Inside this work, through use of both comedy and rationality, you will be called upon to perhaps rethink your relationship to your God (or Gods) and learn why, if one tries to use reasoning and commonsense, most religious doctrine starts to topple like a house built on sans. If you are among those not sure enough of their own beliefs to risk shining the spotlight upon them, you should probably NOT go any further . If, on the other hand, you are ready to have an open mind, you may find some new questions to your answers! This work is a sometimes serious, but more often humorous collection of my personal musings, experiences and deductions on the subject of religion. I hope that you accept it in the lighthearted manner that it was conceived and written..


Although not quite ready for publication, I have uploaded a significant portion of the text to my new favourite site: Authonomomy.com. The entire book should be ready for publishing within the next couple of weeks (just in time for Christmas?!). In the meantime, you can whet your whistle and read the first few chapters by clicking on the book image!

Update: As of Dec. 2nd, Eeny Meeny is now available for sale on both Kindle as an eBook and through CreateSpace as a trade paperback:

Kindle Version is available until Jan 1st 2013 for just $3.99 after which the price will be $5.99 (Still a bargain!)

Paperback Version is just $9.95 until Jan 1st 2013 after which it will be $12.95 (Still less than 10 cents a page!)

Watch this page for details about Amazon and Bookseller availability!


Travel Photo Journal: Wittdün auf Amrum, Germany

I first visited Amrum in 1972 as a teenaged student and was immediately captivated by its unique nature. Since I was there working for the summer in the youth hostel, I got to know the island and its idiosyncrasies very well.

I have since revisited a couple of times, most recently in 2003 when these pictures were taken. Most of the island is made up of sand dunes, which are officially protected, since erosion is a serious problem. In the winter, this is a pretty desolate place since tourism is the island’s main source of business and only a few hardy locals live here year-round. Wittdün, in the south is the main settlement but there are two other small villages, Nebel, somewhat in the centre, and Nordorf, as its name suggests, on the northern tip towards Westerland.

If you get the chance, I highly recommend a visit


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POTD: Winter is coming to Ottawa, Canada

Winter is coming to Ottawa, Canada. Whether we like it or not, we might as well get used to it and find the beauty in it!

The shot above shows that you can find beauty in the most amazing places if you keep your eyes open! This picture was taken with my (now long lost) Nokia N8 Cellphone.

This reminds me of a ditty that I learned as a child:

Whether the weather be fine,

Or whether the weather be not!

We will weather the weather,

Whatever the weather,

Whether we like it or not…..

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