a peek inside the fishbowl

15 Dec, 2009

Winter Ottawalk

Posted by andrea tomkins in: Misc. life|Ottawa|Photography

Thanks for your kind comments and emails re: yesterday’s funk.

I sat down in the morning and hit a wall. I felt like (and still do, a little) that my blog looks a little too much like this:

Blah blah blah, blah blah blah ME ME LOOKIT ME.
Blah blah blah, blah blah blah ME ME LOOKIT ME.
Blah blah blah, blah blah blah ME ME LOOKIT ME.


It’s still bugging me, but it shouldn’t … because this is what defines a personal blog, right? It’s a journal. And this is my journal. It’s a space I use to sort out my thoughts and ideas and ultimately, I am writing for myself. I also know you’re out there and keep coming back … many many of you … GAH! I don’t know where I’m going with this exactly, so I will just leave it at that. I need more coffee!

Bloggers, do you know what I am getting at?

We’re getting new windows today, most of the ones on the main floor of our house are being replaced so it’s kind of crazy around here at the moment. Suffice it to say that I won’t be getting much work done.

This house was built in 1942/43 and the windows are original. Charming, yes, but they’ve hit the end of their lifespan and they’ve been very hard to maintain. Some of them haven’t been opened in years. I am sad to see them go, but I also can’t wait for them to be done.

The old windows were terrible. There was always frost and condensation on the inside. And if you stood in front of them you could feel the draft. New windows will make a huge difference.

I had the pleasure of tooling around Dow’s Lake with a bunch of local photographers on Saturday morning. BeachMama was there, and many people I hadn’t met before. It was a great group and I’m so glad I went.

I don’t have a lot of opportunities to shoot some quiet winter scenes without THERE ACTUALLY BEING children in them, so this was a welcome change!

Here are a few pics I came home with:

Winter Ottawalk near Dow's Lake and the Arboretum

Winter Ottawalk near Dow's Lake and the Arboretum

Winter Ottawalk near Dow's Lake and the Arboretum

Winter Ottawalk near Dow's Lake and the Arboretum
Check out what some of the other peeps shot at the Ottawalk Flickr group.

10 Responses to "Winter Ottawalk"

1 | Chantal

December 15th, 2009 at 11:03 am


I would love to get new windows. Our are only 15 years old but they are the crappy, builders minimum ones. If only they built windows like they used to, to last. Seriously, you got over 70 years out of the ones you have. That is amazing.

2 | Joy

December 15th, 2009 at 11:37 am


I absolutely adore your blog!!! I check several times per day, to see if you have added to it. And the photos are superb!! You are so lucky to have this talent-i am green with envy (like the Grinch!) Thank you for doing what you do!!

3 | Lynn

December 15th, 2009 at 11:57 am


I love your blog! You are interesting, your life is interesting, and most of all, your writing *makes* it interesting. I can’t count the number of awesome life ideas I’ve gotten from your blog.

I understand what you mean about the oddness of writing about yourself all the time…but seriously, do not stop. You’re like a blogging rock star :).

The pictures are lovely…I especially like the one of the bird.

4 | lacoop

December 15th, 2009 at 1:15 pm


If you didn’t get tired of your own writing once in a while, you would be a certified egomaniac. Self criticism, in reasonable doses, is good for growth. If you have a nagging feeling about the blog, it is part of your subconscious doing its job…you will work it out.

By the way, the windows will be great. If only they weren’t so expensive!

5 | lacoop

December 15th, 2009 at 1:33 pm


p.s. I should have also said you’re site is great! Just in case you just having an early case of the winter blahs. :-)

What is good includes (but is not limited to):
– the layout is easy on the eyes,
– the writing is good (grammar and form),
– the topics are broad and interesting (sometimes too much “mom” blogging but that is only fair since it is probably welcome by many readers),
– the authentic feel of the posts…you don’t sound like you are “staging” anything

There are other blogs with other themes (rants, politics, etc.). They all have their place, just like the variety of books found in the bookstore. Rest assured that while you may be a little tired of hearing yourself, your audience is not. :-)

6 | Laura

December 15th, 2009 at 6:07 pm


I love your blog! I look forward to updates, your stories, beautiful photos and great information. I have learned more about so many wonderful things Ottawa has to offer thanks to you. (and we’ve been living here for 3 years now) Also, you do creative, fun activities with your children and that is inspiring. Everyone has moments of doubt…but I can see from all the comments I am not the only fan out there. Keep on going – you’re doing a bang up job! I look forward to your next post…. Laura

7 | betsy mae

December 15th, 2009 at 6:54 pm


Well said Lynn, I could say ditto and be done but I will ramble instead. You know that I love your blog. I love your blog so much that I can’t believe I’m suggesting this, perhaps you really just nead a break? It’s the time of year that feels so busy, lots of out of the ordinary things to think about, you’re working, etc……etc.etc.etc. Maybe you just need to take a few days ‘off’ from the blog, maybe a week? Maybe two? All of us, your faithful readers need to be understanding of that (and I’m positive everyone will be).

8 | Sharon

December 16th, 2009 at 5:07 pm


I know the feeling. i want to write about my life, but sometimes I would like to get more personal, but then do I really want my very personal life out there. And I feel my life is mundane at the most. I talk about school a lot but who wants to hear about me and school? I post my photos, but even that I don’t shoot as much as I would like.
I was supposed to go on that Photo walk but with the logistics of my life it didn’t happen. I would have loved to have been there.

I love your Blog…I check yours often and love it. Please keep it up.

9 | BeachMama

December 17th, 2009 at 9:39 am


Had a great time touring Dow’s Lake with you, hopefully next time it will be a bit warmer and some Spring flowers will be in bloom.

10 | Amy @ Muddy Boots

December 18th, 2009 at 2:35 pm


I have, like, two seconds to comment, but want you to know that I love your blog too. Seriously, Andrea, it’s great. Keep it up.

comment form:


Stay in touch

Me and my pet projects

Ottawa Bucket list

Subscribe via email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

The Obligatory Blurb

My name is Andrea and I live in the Westboro area of Ottawa with my husband Mark and our dog Piper who is kind of a big deal on Instagram. We also have two human daughters: Emma (20) and Sarah (18). During the day I work as a writer at The Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre. I am a longtime Ottawa blogger and I've occupied this little corner of the WWW since 1999. The Fishbowl is my whiteboard, water cooler, and journal, all rolled into one. I'm passionate about healthy living, arts and culture, family travel, great gear, good food, and sharing the best of Ottawa for families. I also love vegetables, photography, gadgets, and great design.

If you'd like to contact me, please use this form. If you're so inclined, you can read more about me here. Thank you for visiting!


My right hand is actually a camera

Flickr Badges Widget

Connect with me at these places too!

On the nightstand

All hail the mighty Twitter