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Kate is launched at University of Manitoba – Aine at Nova Academy by Ann Treacy
September 1, 2018, 6:30 pm
Filed under: Winnipeg

­­It took a week in Winnipeg but we are on the road and Kate is now settled in her dorm and I’m so excited for her! The University of Manitoba is a big enough place. It’s not the size of the Twin Cities University of Minnesota campus, but it certainly compares to any University I’ve visited. And it is bordered on one side by the Red River, so it’s a pretty campus too.

Kate has her own room and she’s in a girls’ dorm – or at least the girls’ side of a co-ed dorm. And she’s with a lot of the international students. She is in the University One program, which means she hasn’t chosen a faculty/major yet. She’s good at a lot of things so making a decision may be difficult.

In our week in Winnipeg we got to visit Lily. In fact Lily had me on her radio show. (You can access the archive from Aug 31.) The good news is that we did an awesome 90 minutes on songs about places. I included many Minnesota bands, since I’m forever the Minnesota music pusher. The bad news is that 90 minute show didn’t get recorded. But we went back and did about 50 minutes, which did air.

I got in some good walks with my Dad (aka Grandpa) including a visit to the Assiniboine Park, which I think it lovely. And we (Kate, Lily, Grandpa and me) ate at several very nice restaurants in Winnipeg. If you ever need a recommendation, you know where to come!

And if this week wasn’t exciting enough  – Aine started high school at Nova. I was able to see her off – but she’s spent the week with grandma. So far though, she seems pretty happy with her choice and we’re so happy that she got into Nova. (It’s a lottery to get in, and initially she was on the wait list – but we got the good call a month ago that she was in!)

Intergenerational trip to Winnipeg – lots of art, walking and heat by Ann Treacy
June 23, 2018, 3:45 am
Filed under: Winnipeg

This week we took a trip to Winnipeg – Aine, Kate, me, Grandma and Grandpa. We went to check in on Lily and bring her home. And we went to check out University of Manitoba for Kate. (She is starting there this fall.)

It was great to see Lily and her apartment, which she took great care to clean for us!

Lily lives in the West End of Winnipeg – which has one of the largest collections of murals. I learned through the beauty of Google that the murals focus on heritage, local heroes, culture, community, commerce and cuisine. They do spruce up the area, which is pretty mixed. Lots of students and I’ve noticed community services and shelters in the area too.

I did a walk through St Boniface. I hadn’t been through that area before. In fact, I hadn’t actually crossed the bridge before. There is a gorgeous cathedral in the area with many very cool statutes and tombstones.

Otherwise there was a lot of walking and spying of lots of art in the city. We saw Indian City play at the Human Rights Museum for Summer Solstice and went to a Farmer’s Market. Otherwise it was a lot of getting to know Winnipeg.

34 hour trip to Winnipeg – Lily’s digs, CKUW and the Jets by Ann Treacy
May 9, 2018, 7:53 pm
Filed under: Winnipeg

We had the quickest international visit ever this week – Grandpa and I brought Lily and her roommate back to the University of Winnipeg. (We are super thankful to have a grandpa that would drive so far so quickly!) First – the rumor of it being cold in Canada – wrong. It was 86 degrees, which was a pleasant surprise. Second – it was really fun to see how well Lily is doing in Winnipeg. I’m so proud of her!

We got to see her apartment. It’s definitely a place for students but a nice place. She has her own room and it’s big. And there’s a fire escape-type porch on the roof. She has two roommates right now – and a big fat cat. They’re done a nice job decorating the place, including some really awesome art by Lily. (I snuck a couple pictures of her art here – without permission!)

I got a fun tour of the U of Winnipeg radio station, where Lily has a regular radio show Friday afternoons (2-3:30). They have about 32,000 CDs/Albums/cassettes and add about 1,000 each year.  Turns out they don’t have a lot of younger students with shows so that made me especially proud of her show.

We had a nice dinner with grandpa and got to walk by a number of Lily’s regular haunts – her yoga place, her old job, her current job, favorite restaurants. At night Lily and I took a walk around town. Turns out there was a Jet’s hockey game. Wow! There were thousands of fans happily watching. Well, happily at the start, kind of sad at the end of the game.

The city had set up 6 (or so) giant TV screens set up around town in a spoke a wheel pattern near the hockey arena. And they hosted a “white out” – which means everyone dressed in white. Apparently it costs the city $60,000 – but it a great investment for local businesses. My favorite moment was the guy (post loss) who chucked everyone on the arm and say – we’ll get them next time. The game tied up the series. I think the final game is tomorrow night.

Lily starts first year at University of Winnipeg by Ann Treacy
September 3, 2017, 2:12 am
Filed under: Canada, Winnipeg

This week grandpa and I dropped Lily off to school at the University of Winnipeg. It’s kind of amazing how excited you can be for someone else. Lily is so ready for college. She’s going to rock it. She’s going to love it!

She’s so brave. She went assuming she’d know no one. Turns out she knows one person and I think she’s grateful for that. She’s taking Rhetoric and Communication. Classes don’t start for a few days. She would prefer if they would have started a week ago. You know that feeling that you just want the start to be over.

We got her settled into her down – a single en suite! We did a quick trip to Ikea of Winnipeg to help fix it up. We got her sorted with a bank and wire transfers. (Pro tip – don’t wire money to people. Double pro tip: if you do and it’s a large sun find a Walmart. They could not have been nicer about helping us despite the fact that it took at least an hour. Yup – the other people in the Walmart line were wishing us into the cornfields!)

She thinks she got a job – not bad for 48 hours in the country. It’s at a hot dog joint attached to what we assume it the college bar hang out. (Pro tip for college seekers: drinking age in Canada is 18.) With reciprocity for Minnesota students the tuition (and board) at U of Winnipeg is not crazy. It includes some great perks – like a bus pass. Yet, it doesn’t include broadband access. (At $30 bucks a month per student I’m hoping the provider will use some of that crash to invest in rural areas!)

The people we encountered were unbelievably nice. Friendly Manitoba is more than a catch phrase.

We already miss her. Lily is the voice of calm and reason. She watches out for her sisters and she is a super pleasant person – especially after 10 am. We are already planning our first visit.

And here are some of our non-school pictures from the trip. Winnipeg is beautiful. Our weather was perfect. Lily may want to look back at this in January.

Last look at Toronto, quick look at Niagara Falls by Ann Treacy
July 10, 2016, 2:11 am
Filed under: Niagara Falls, Toronto

Dad and I took one last walk in Toronto while teen scene slept. We walked from the house to a shore of Lake Ontario. It feels a little bit like Lake Superior in Duluth (if you look at the lake) and like Lake Michigan in Chicago (if you look at the millions of fancy high rise apartments).

We walked by the Hockey Hall of Fame. We walked by a place where Charles Dickens had spent the night. Walked through another campus of George Brown College and the Aquarium, which is supposed to be good.

In short we did everything that made the girls glad they slept in. But I enjoyed it!

Then we drove toward Scranton – our destination for the night. We stopped on the Canadian side of Niagara Falls, because I think the Canadian side is amazing. It was a quick trip but we got some great pictures.

Then we had a quick lunch in NY. Lucia pointed out it was good to be home where you get 412 options on the menu in the restaurant. Now the girls are swimming. Grandpa is in his room. I am enjoying a moment alone!


Road Trip: Toronto markets, colleges and street art by Ann Treacy
July 8, 2016, 10:45 pm
Filed under: Toronto

We’re on a summer road trip; it’s me, the girls, a friend and Grandpa. We spent the first night in Chicago. It was fun to see the cousins. We plowed through the second day to Toronto – with a drive-by sighting of Detroit for me.

I have to start by saying that Grandma found us an amazing place to stay in Toronto via AirBnB. It’s pretty central, very cool and plenty of room for everyone. And the beauty of AirBnB is that you can get some insider tips from your host.

We got in just in time for dinner and had a delicious meal at the House of Parliament – upon recommendation. Granted it was a gastro pub, but it really did have food that was more UK than US – smoked salmon and sticky toffee pudding. Yum!

Today we started the day at the St Lawrence Market. I was expected boutiques or flea market type stuff. It’s really an expanded food market. It was a perfect place for everyone to start getting their bearings.

The Lily and I took the subway to check out George Brown College. It appears to be in a very nice neighborhood – and of course it’s always fun to take an underground. I’m not sure this is top of her list – although Toronto might be. Kate, Aine and Lucia hit the shopping district and we met up with them after our meeting at the school.

Then the older girls hit the streets for more shopping while Aine and I walked back to the house – maybe not directly back. We visited a gallery, checked out the Blue Jay’s stadium and the Canadian Walk of Celebrity, we saw plenty of street art and Aine talked me in to getting her hot chocolate, a muffin and a chocolate croissant.



Art of Winnipeg – museums and murals by Ann Treacy
April 9, 2016, 4:19 am
Filed under: Winnipeg

Winnipeg has a host of great street art. We saw some of it in the neighborhoods we visited – Osborn Village, The Forks and driving around downtown, walking around the skyways and underground and the area around the University.

We also got to see some great art indoors. One treat for me – we visited an on-campus gallery at the University of Winnipeg. There was an exhibit called Cafeteria by Elvira Finnegan and Lisa Wood. .They invited students in to have lunch. The took pictures during lunch and used them to piece together pictures/collages, which became models for drawings. They also maintained the lunch tables and food as part of the installation. I think they used a brine crystallization process to preserve the food.

Then funny enough – I saw another work by Elvira Finnegan at the Winnipeg Art Gallery – a tea cup with the same process. The WAG featured a lot of local artists and a lot of Native artists. There were number of small-ish statues that looked like they were sculpted boxes of stone. The figures are very roundy and have a cute edge to them. They are playful. I’ll just include a couple of examples.

There were a few pictures by KC Adams – she explores a “dualism of human life and intelligent machines, reflecting on her own mixed Euro-Indigenous ancestry and her dependence on technology for communicating and art production.” The series included four pictures of stereotypes of women.

Another favorite was a work by Rosalie Favell – a take on a familiar image from the Wizard of Oz with text from Louis David Riel’s statement – My people will sleep for one hundred years, but when they awake, it will be the artists who give them their spirit back.

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