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Speaking Canadian

July 8, 2017

I’m using the term Canadian English quite loosely here. Canada is a huge country (9.985 million km² to be exact), so while we definitely have our very own variety of English, the same terms aren’t necessarily used in every province or territory.

The terms listed here are what I’ve used growing up in Southern Ontario. I’m not saying they’re never used elsewhere, but they’re commonplace here, and not always understood by our international friends. This is a pretty decent list, but it’s not a complete list by any means.

Pencil Crayons

This is one of those words that pretty much all Canadian English speakers use, and it wasn’t until maybe eight or so years ago when I realized that pencil crayons wasn’t the “norm”. My co-workers in Japan were mostly American, and I can clearly remember the day when we were working on creating something, and I asked them to “pass the pencil crayons”.

The what?” they asked.
The pencil crayons? Is… that not what they’re called?

They pointed between the (wax) crayons, pencil crayons, and pencils, bemused, until I gestured to the box that I wanted. The box of, as they say in apparently most other varieties of English, coloured pencils.

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Canada, Featured

Niagara Falls: What to know

March 25, 2015

It’s finally spring, and the last remnants of snow are rapidly melting away as the city heats up with balmy temperatures that are finally above zero. With the change in season comes one thing in particular to the Niagara region: tourists.

Over the Horseshoe Falls Host to over twelve million tourists every year, Niagara Falls is still one of the most popular vacation destinations. The falls is divided into two sections; the Bridal Veil Falls (the American Falls) and the Horseshoe Falls (the Canadian Falls). Despite my bias being Canadian, our side does have the better view. I’ve spent a great deal of my summers working in the city of Niagara Falls, answering questions and sharing information. It’s easy to find information about the falls themselves, but sometimes those questions which you think would be common sense go unanswered. And hey, it never hurts to ask.

So here are the answers to eleven (or so) questions that I get asked pretty much every summer.
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Blog, Canada

Harvest Spice Tea

January 6, 2015

Even though we’ve passed into the New Year, and are making our way to new seasons and new holidays, if you’re ever looking for a tea that gives you that Christmas feeling, Steeped Tea’s Harvest Spice is perfect for that.

Harvest Spice is a black tea with cinnamon pieces, cloves, and jasmine buds. While the name hints at autumn flavours, I find the cinnamon and clove strongest, which gives it that Christmas taste. It leaves that pleasant tingly cinnamon taste at the back of your throat when you drink it.

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Blog, Canada

Traditional Afternoon Tea

December 17, 2014

Today, I want to talk about the traditional afternoon tea that I went to with my Grammy this past weekend at the Prince of Wales in Niagara-on-the-Lake for her Christmas present. The Prince of Wales is a beautiful old hotel that was established in 1864, and they offer afternoon tea in the drawing room. We had a reservation, and when we got there we were asked if we wanted to sit inside the drawing room or in the solarium. It was a pretty gloomy and chilly day, so we chose to sit in the drawing room not too far from the roaring fire.
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