I had a WONDERFUL weekend !! Charlie & I went to Toronto. The "official" reason was bead business. The "unofficial"? FUN!! We did do the bead business and it was great. My supplier had a small bead show set up of Unicorn beads from California. They were amazingly beautiful - they almost seemed luminescent. So I gathered up some of those, visited the Swarovski Room for another little bundle, then off to the warehouse for a few hours of shopping. By 1pm I was OUT OF ENERGY !!! We had slept for 3 hours then had driven to the airport. By the time I finished shopping we had already been up for 12 hours and hadn't eaten for 8 ... no wonder the energy level was low !! So we subwayed our way to the city, checked in, and went to eat. Then we visited all the wonderful Christmas sites.
This was the Swarovski Christmas Tree at the Eaton Centre. It is breathtaking !!
Then we went to see the windows at The Bay. There was a Santa's workshop, a series of Christmas story windows, and a series of fairy windows. All incredible !! Then up to one of my favourite places on earth - CHRISTMAS STREET at The Bay !! Room after room of Christmas decorations all in various themes. The variety is amazing and the details are fabulous.Then we hiked around the city seeing all the various sites, bought a few gifts, and went back to get ready for our big event - the tree lighting at Nathan Phillips Square.
This was an amazing evening. It is right in front of City Hall and there are all sorts of little booths set up. We watched the skaters on the outdoor rink, bought hot chocolate (and a monkey hat for Charlie - he looked so cute !!)and just took in the atmosphere. Then the stage lights came up. The first act was a funky choir who got the whole crowd going. Then a number called "We Must Be the Light". During that song, the switch was thrown ! The 300,000 lights on the magnificent tree lit, as well as 1000s of lights on the trees, rink, fences, walls, ... everywhere !! It was wonderful. Then the musical acts came on - Toya Alexis, Alex Cuba, Serena Ryder (one of my favourites !!) , and the Canadian Tenors. Imagine being in a crowd of thousands of people, all nationalities of the world, and we are all singing Feliz Navidad. It was surreal !! The Canadian Tenors sounded like a choir of at least 50 instead of the 4 that they are. Their Christmas Carols had us all singing. But there was more ... the FIREWORKS !!! Burst after burst of amazing colour ... waterfalls of golden lights, sprays of electric colours... oh ... so beautiful !! The fireworks were set off from the top and front of city hall including 2 men with pinwheels of pyrotechnics strapped to their backs who descended the building while lit !! The crowd went crazy for those two brave souls !! The fireworks just built and built with soaring music - the crowd was ecstatic !! It was one of the most beautiful shows I have ever seen !! By the time we went to bed, we had been functioning on 3 hours sleep for 21 hours... a bit tired !!
The next day was The One of a Kind Gift Show (more sock monkeys & Damn Dollies for the collection !!) and then a bit more shopping including Propaganda on Yonge and That Paper Place on Queen. Then sadly, we had to say goodbye to the city and head to the airport. Little did we know ... our flight - and everyone else's - was cancelled. So an extra night at the very posh Sheraton ($11 for a bowl of oatmeal !! And no, we didn't eat breakfast there ...) and home on Monday.
All in all , a great Christmas treat !!!