First Photo Blog

Heres a look at Niagara Falls over Easter long weekend, March 2018.

IMG_1095♦ Niagara Falls, Canada

IMG_0994♦ Skylon Tower, Niagara Falls

IMG_1030♦ Casino Tower, Niagara Falls

 

Here are photos taken by yours truly on Victoria Avenue & Clifton Hill.

IMG_1042Upside Down house, Victoria Avenue

IMG_1034Street-view, Victoria Avenue

IMG_1044Street-view, Victoria Avenue

IMG_1081Ripley’s moving theatre, Clifton Hill

IMG_1049Street-view, Clifton Hill

IMG_1078Frankenstein house/Burger King, Clifton Hill

IMG_1061Wizards Golf/Ripley’s Believe It or Not Odditorium, Clifton Hill

IMG_1077Ripley’s Believe It or Not Odditorium, Clifton Hill

IMG_1054Pirate’s Cove mini putt, Clifton Hill

IMG_1055Pirate’s Cove mini putt, Clifton Hill

IMG_1068The HillBilly’s, Clifton Hill

IMG_1070SkyWheel/Strike Rock N’ Bowl/Boston Pizza, Clifton Hill

IMG_1074Dippin’ dots, Clifton Hill

 

IMG_1091♦ Niagara Falls, Canada

 

 

 

 

 

Family Day

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I remember watching the news, hearing a new holiday was going to be added to the calendar. After some research to remind myself, this holiday was set to take place for the first time in February 2013. I’ll never forget how my family spent their first Family Day.

It was a Monday many years ago. We celebrated our first Family Day at IKEA. We arrived early for the breakfast as they only served it between 9:30-11 a.m. My parents enjoyed going to IKEA for breakfast because it was cheap and we had a big family, making this normal for us. After breakfast, we shopped around for things my parents wouldn’t ever buy. However, we never left IKEA empty-handed.

For the rest of the day I don’t remember doing much. In the evening, dinner was made and we came together as a family to eat. When Family Day first started, it was recognized as a statutory holiday (holiday recognized for federal employee’s), leaving businesses to remain open as if it was a regular day. Over the years, it has become a public holiday and tons of businesses are now closed.

Experiencing Family Day through-out my late teenage years towards early adulthood, had become taco day/night. It became a tradition but eventually that also became old…

Over the last couple years, Family Day has become a day to rest. I’m not sure how I got to this point but it has become a day of doing absolutely nothing with or without family.

I’ve thought about starting new traditions to celebrate Family Day, but still haven’t gotten around to it. An ideal Family Day would consistent of hanging out with close family and friends, playing games, talking, drinking, laughing, and sharing old memories.

What are your thoughts? How do you guys celebrate Family Day?

 

Buying a camera

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 I spoke a lot about wanting a camera to family and friends. I always said I wanted one but never really took the time to look into how much they cost and what different types of cameras had to offer. I will say, I visited a Best Buy around Christmas time of 2016 and briefly inquired about a camera on display but, the employee wasn’t helpful… At all, which eventually discouraged me.

Before studying journalism, I knew at some point I would be taking a photo course because journalist often take photos for news or other stories. This is something I knew for sure. What I didn’t know was, I was walking into a course that REQUIRED students to own their own cameras. The professor made it clear we wouldn’t be successful in the course if we didn’t own cameras, well in so many words. Our campus does have an option to rent equipment where students can borrow things like cameras but the rules are strict and I prefer to own my own things in school. I’m sure many of you can relate.

I remember gasping as my professor spoke. I wasn’t at all prepared to purchase this camera I had been speaking about for some time now. 

When I came home that evening I began looking up different types of cameras. I wanted to get something that wouldn’t be too complicated to use as this would be my very first “high techy” camera.

The first website I went to was Amazon. With the boom of the amazing Amazon website, its great customer service and my ‘accidental’ prime membership, I always check their website first. However, nothing really caught my eye on Amazon. I then went to Best Buy as recommended because they usually have “great deals” on electronics. Also, with the rise of one and two-day shipping within Canada, it wouldn’t be a terrible idea to take a look at what they had to offer.

The Best Buy website is extremely easy to use and finding the cameras they sell came up instantly after typing ‘camera’ in the search bar. I came across the canon rebel T6 which looked really fancy when I took a closer look at it. Then, YouTube to look at what people had to say about the camera.

When the camera arrived, timing was perfect. I was at home minutes away from getting ready for my only class of the day, which ended up being cancelled =). By this time, I was excited and couldn’t wait to see what it looked like (pictures can sometimes be deceiving). The box was neatly packaged and wasn’t missing a thing! I looked up a beginner video on YouTube for the rebel T6 and was ble to learn how to use the basic functions on the camera. The videos were really helpful.

What are your thoughts on buying a camera, especially beginners?

These are some of the first photo’s taken on my Canon Rebel T6.

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I HATE POLITICS

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The older I become the more I realize how uninterested I am in politics. I’m sure we understand the purpose of it all but, I just prefer not to deal with it. Elections for Presidents and Prime Ministers takes place every 4 years, which comes around fairly quickly. Leading up to the elections, countries are usually in shambles because citizens and political leaders are campaigning to get votes. The decision we contribute to making is a crucial one, as it helps determine who will represent our country for the next 4 years. Tons of work needs to be done. It becomes chaotic with all the politicians stating why they should rule our country and what they plan on doing for “its people.”

Here at home, we vote for our Mayor, Provincial Premiers, and our Prime Minister. It can be a lot. It all gets so confusing and as a young adult, its hard to keep up with what each candidate is saying and what they plan on doing to make our country better…

Whenever the elections come around I automatically tune myself out. Its overwhelming and it feels like everyone is telling a big lie! In many cases, candidates will speak on the impact they plan on having on our country but when elected, never live up to what they’ve promised… As much as politics gets under my skin, I do take the time to vote for what its worth however; I make my decision on or around the final day after watching countless YouTube videos on debates. I search seeking information on what each political party has to offer. The candidate that speaks to my generation or age group the most, is usually where my vote goes. I often wonder if my vote is ever actually counted or if this is also just a big lie!

During the American 2016 elections, most of us watched a live broadcast of the electoral votes come in between Donald Trump and Hilary Clinton. It was a heated one and I personally don’t feel as if any of the two of them deserved to be in the position they were in. Now that Donald Trump was elected and has moved into his 2nd year of presidency, I think its safe to say he is one of the most covered political leaders ever for obvious reasons and I am tired of it!! 

Even though being in Canada has nothing to do with the American elections itself, its important to stay engaged in whats happening. America is our next door neighbour and some decisions made there can affect our country. 

As a journalist I’m forced to be engaged in the news and hearing just about everything that goes on in the political world and I hate it! I wish we could have trust worthy people representing our countries but then again who can we trust? For these reasons, I HATE POLITICS.

Whats your take?

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Breastfeeding in Public!

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I was scrolling through Facebook a few months ago and I came across a video showing  people reacting to women as they breastfed in public. The video was based on a social experiment that had hidden cameras ready to capture the public’s reaction. I have no idea where this video was filmed but based on how everyone spoke I’ll assume it was somewhere in North America. The experiment was put to the test by having a women carrying a fake baby attempting to breastfeed in PUBLIC as the baby cried. The feedback  was disappointing. As Ive mentioned before, I don’t have children but I can use my imagination well enough to picture a baby crying from being hungry. As a mother, you want your baby to feel comfort.

The Scenario:

In one particular scene a guy was sitting outside in a quiet courtyard.  The mother with the crying baby sits near him. She begins to comfort her baby and prepares herself to breastfeed. The gentleman near by instantly reacts and demands that she goes else where to feed her crying baby, “somewhere more private and not outside”. The mother replies by saying “Whats wrong with what I’m doing? My baby is crying from being hungry”. As they go back and forth the guy becomes more upset. Through-out the rest of the video, I realized this was a big “problem” for many people.

Over the last month or so, Ive read about the breastfeeding in public “problem”. Its been spoken about so many times that I even caught a glimpse of it on the news one day. They were speaking on how the public feels when mothers start breastfeeding in public. According to ‘INFACT Canada’, women have the right to breastfeed anywhere at anytime. This is written in the ‘Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedom’. To add, If you live in Ontario ‘The Ontario Human Rights Commission’ http://www.bfiontario.ca/the-baby-friendly-initiative/protection/breastfeeding-your-ontario-human-rights/ states, “women have the right to breastfeed in a public area, and they should not be asked to cover up or move”.

In America out of 50 states, In 49 of them women are allowed to freely breastfeed in public. After doing some research, breastfeeding is quiet normal all over the world. In some countries some mothers try to avoid breastfeeding in public, but its completely normal.

My opinion…

Some things irk me when it comes to how our world perceives things. I’ve never looked at women breastfeeding in public as a “problem”, especially in a first world country like Canada or America. I truly understand why some might have a problem with women who dont cover themselves while breastfeeding in public but what about the women who are very discreet and private about breastfeeding? The women who actively use family restrooms and other private areas? The women who excuse themselves and find a place away from everyone, why is it an issue? Breastfeeding is a huge part of having a baby and everyone should have the simple respect for women when it comes to this. We’re all humans and its apart of life. Get over it!

Your thoughts?

CrAziEst Time of the Year!

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Its literally been CRAZY over the last few months. 

I’m sure we all have a date or time in our minds as to when we slowly start accepting the fact that summer is coming to an end … In Toronto, summer usually winds down when the National Exhibition opens its gates for the last bit of fun the summer has to offer. The Ex usually opens the last 2 weeks of August, which is right before school starts and closes its gates the day before school resumes. The Ex is famous for its huge play-ground with games, rides, food, tons of different attractions, and just all around fun. Typically, when this time of the year comes around, this in my opinion indicates summer is finally coming to an end…

During this time of the year a lot goes on. Students of all ages are getting back to school shopping done, some students are preparing themselves for school out of town, some students may even be returning from vacations but most importantly parents are losing their minds trying to prepare themselves for the new school year; which automatically makes things 100 times more stressful.

Teachers and students are nervous, some are excited, maybe even anxious …  It’s just extreme pressure for just about everyone. Even the average Joe who works 9-5 is worried about how he’ll beat Toronto’s rush hour traffic. This time of the year is just draining. It takes a lot out of us but once the school year is on its way, the rest of it is smooth sailing, until chaotic Christmas comes around.

If you live in Toronto, or a big city that shares identical experiences in terms of timing and weather, embrace it! It wont be here for another couple month’s. Winter is coming…

Uber Baby sitting

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We all have a general idea of how Uber works right? You open an app on your phone, then select a car to pick you up and it takes you where ever you want to go! Not to mention all transactions are done through the app. Yeah, it’s truly an amazing app
that has become super addicting to us today. The prices are reasonable and the drivers take you where ever you need to go without a hitch or a glitch… Now don’t get me wrong, I know Uber has its flaws and all but I think this method is extremely useful as compared to official cab companies. Cab companies over charge you before you can even get into the cab, they never have debit machines and they’re always so… I don’t know… Off?! Uber has most definitely become a thing here in the city causing some to use it multiple times a day. I would think its one of the most affordable transportation services that takes place within the city other than public transit. All in all its an amazing app.

To continue, Some genius thought about having a babysitting app that is similar to Uber… Obviously in terms of how it works.

While browsing through Facebook feeds I came across a video that was broadcasted on Global News. Immediately this video caught my attention mainly because of its caption, “Datenight Babysitting”. I should start off by saying I’m not a parent as yet but I’m positive I have a general idea of how exhausting children can be. Wanting alone time, or in need of a break is completely understandable. Children have TOO MUCH energy and alone time is greatly appreciated, but an app that randomly selects a babysitter to watch your children? Doesn’t it seem a little weird? Let me not take a big shit all over this app before I explain what it really does…

Surely, this app was created for parents that OVERLY appreciate that alone time and have no issue paying up some extra cash for an experienced person to watch their children. The app is used by selecting a babysitter who is local. Now, normally these “babysitters” are University or College students, ECE Qualifiers (Early Childhood Educator’s), high school students and so on… Not bad, huh? To use this app as the ‘babysitter’ you must complete a babysitting course that cost around $65 and that’s it … You don’t need ANYTHING ELSE! However, the course teaches you everything you’ll need to know from, what do to in emergency situations, how to interact with different aged children and how to safely take care of a small baby. Parents then select the babysitter to do an interview via video call where they can better see if the person is fit to watch their child/children. The babysitter also has the option as to whether or not they want to work with this family. Babysitters have access to checking the parents references and linked in profiles to help them better make a decision. After the interview has taken place and both parties have agreed, parents then select the date they want the babysitter and how long they want the babysitter for. Prices go anywhere from $10.50-$15 hourly and an extra $5 for using the app. Payments are done through the app with a credit card which means no payments are received in person unless it’s a tip.

My Opinion…

Listen guys, I can understand why this might be a great idea and it being handy for some parents but I had no idea parents would have random people babysitting their children, and I’m not speaking about a trained professional such as a teacher or daycare worker, I’m talking about someone you randomly met through an app. It’s just so hard to believe any parent would want to leave their small child or children with a random person even if they’re qualified through this app. I remember babysitting at a young age and I’m sure some can relate to this… We didn’t really require much but whoever we were babysitting for we either knew them, knew of them, our parents knew them, they were kids that lived in the neighborhood or our granny and grampa knew them. I mean someone close to you knew of these children and that’s how the transaction was done.

Nevertheless, this app is pretty interesting. It’s now extremely easy to get someone out to your home without having to call everyone you know. The fact that these babysitters don’t have anything else to show for is the only part that makes me worried. No background check or CPR training required? I was always under the impression that parents were picky when it came to someone caring for their little ones and I’m not saying parents that use this app aren’t but its shocking that parents have become so trusting. The world has become such a dangerous place and you can’t just trust anyone, okay! Doesn’t it scare you just a little bit that a stranger is in your home caring for your child/children while you’re out enjoying alone time, having fun or doing whatever it is you do? It just seems a little selfish to me. Needless to say, I’m sure some parents will religiously use this app. They should have some type of limit on the app like no more than 3 times a month. I assume after using this app parents will eventually get to know some of the babysitters?.

What are your thoughts?