With the way the weather has been the last few weeks, minus of course, those couple of days when the heat was unbearable, I’ve really been enjoying myself! I’ve been out and about and trying to make the most of the summer.

But before I go into what I've been up to lately, can I just take a moment to rant? Y’all know how hard I’ve worked to not only obtain my local "farmer" status but to maintain it as well. Like I wasn't taking those invite-only Facebook groups lightly, notepads and all. Well, guess what? A family of dedicated squirrels keep digging up my plants! Now I don't know if they're blood relatives but what I do know is that I've been spraying neem oil on the plants to keep them away. And yet they seem to have figured out that once the scent starts to wear off, it’s party time. Every week and a half when I go check on my plants, I notice little heaps of dirt by the plant! And it’s not even like this has happened just once. They stay digging. Like what are they really trying to get up to with my plats? *rolls eyes*. Meanwhile, the chilli peppers are starting to come in and so are the zucchini flowers. Both the tomato and pepper plants began growing in all directions, so I had to reinforce them by using a support cage to keep them straight and somewhat steady. Gardening is actually so much fun! Who would have thought I’d take this much interest in plants?

Which reminds me! Not exactly the same thing, but I spent some time at the botanical gardens on Canada Day with my husband and nephew. It was a good day. In the morning, we visited The Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum at the Hamilton Airport. It was definitely a sight to see, but I was pretty disappointed that it didn’t showcase any people of colour. Like all that aviation history on display and not one person of color mentioned. Extremely disappointing. The staff, however, were nice and there was one in particular that explained quite a bit of the history to us in detail. He was really sweet. So apparently, there is an old 8-seater World War II bomber plane that still flies today! Can you believe it? I think that’s super cool. It costs about $3,600 to fly out for a couple of hours from Hamilton towards Toronto. Quite the price tag if you ask me, but hey, if you’re into planes and you don’t have a mortgage or bills to pay, and you're seriously considering yolo'ing, because, well why not? Then go for it! You'd get the chance to re-live the experience of flying in a bomber plane like they did back in the day.

Following our time at the museum, we found our way to Carlo’s Bakery in Mississauga. It's the family owned bakery featured on TLC’s Cake Boss. Because they didn't have the flavour I wanted, I opted for carrot cake. I decided that I would go back another time to try something else. Darius, my nephew, had a massive cookie and a powdered jelly filled donut, while hubby went straight for chocolate cake. According to Darius, he made the best choice. See, although I love jellied donuts, some that I’ve eaten in the past were overly sweet and didn’t have that perfect balance. For example, if the filling is blueberry, then it would make sense to add mint and lemon to the mix as it gives it that perfect balance. The same goes for a strawberry filling. Adding lemon to it gives it that balanced taste. 

We ended up at the botanical gardens, walked around for a bit and saw the waterfalls. Very beautiful and quite scenic. Later that night, the fireworks down by Celebration Square were great. We parked at our secret spot where we could watch and lounged around by the car. I’m a fan of fireworks, but I’d say the best ones hands down in order are the Detroit-Windsor fireworks and those in New York for New Years or 4th of July, in my opinion. All in all, Canada Day was fun and it was nice to be out and about even though I wasn't trying to celebrate the holiday itself as I see it as being tainted. Just think of the way Indigenious people and people of colour were treated back then. Yeah, no I'll pass.

Anyways, you won't believe it but your girl finally joined a book club! I know, right? I’ve been pushing myself to read more instead of watching all the TV in the world. And you already know I watch basically everything! It’s been a little over a month and I’m happy to say that I finished the first book. Our first in-person meeting happened mid-July. The novel was Lucy Foley’s The Paris Apartment which drew you into the life of Jess, a young woman who moved to Paris to spend time with her step-brother, Ben, only to find out that he had been missing. The ending was not at all predictable but it was a really good read and perfect for a day on the beach or a plane ride. We ate pizza (not the regular pizza either), Tandoori, butter chicken and paneer, finishing off with cookies, chips, cupcakes, caprese skewers! Listen, if I didn't appreciate reading before, I sure do now! It was definitely nice to meet new people in-person and to have good laughs and conversations.

On another note, a new brunch date has been launched! You can now mark August 20th in your calendars and register while you still can as there are only 12 spots available. During the session, we will be covering both online and offline strategies. You can submit your questions prior to the event for me to go through to make sure that I’m answering your questions. You'll also get to spend time with me so that I can provide feedback on your business.

That's it for this newsletter! Thanks for reading up on my rant and sympathizing with my peppermint. Have you subscribed to our Youtube channel yet? You can check out our latest episode of “Ask the Expert” - the funding edition, with guest Jamie Proctor-Boyce from Pocketed. We talk about how your business can access grants from the government and how Pocketed can help with the entire process from discovering to submitting a grant that’s suitable just for you.