Ava Grace's Closet: Sheltered in Suburbia : Exploring the City
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Monday, April 27, 2015

Sheltered in Suburbia : Exploring the City

Yesterday was a GOOD day.
I learned a lot about myself. I took a ride down memory lane.
And my sheltered, suburban, we get driven everywhere girls took a real live subway.
And they LOVED it.
As I sat enjoying a traffic-free ride to one of my favourite shopping spots in the city, I realized something. 
Our city is amazing. Our public transportation system is stellar.
So clean you could eat off the floor stellar.
And we don't take advantage of it nowhere near enough.

I grew up in the middle of the city. 
From the age of I can't remember that far back I took public transportation to get to school. 
At the tender age of just 13, armed with the ugliest kilt known to man and a matching forest green blazer, I would take 2 buses, 1 subway, 2 transfers and then walk 4 city blocks to get to get to high school.
Yesterday, as we made our way into the city, the memories of those days came flooding back. 
And while I'm sure I drive my kiddos crazy with my stories, a little part of me swears they love to hear them.

Let's face it.
I know my children are sheltered.
Their entire world consists of maybe, a 5 mile radius around our home.
My Izzy walks across the street to get on her school bus and honestly, I drive her most mornings as it's on my way.
They've almost never seen a homeless person.
They've never experienced the frenzy that is being on a subway at rush hour and having to weave your way through people in hopes of getting out at your actual stop.
And that's ok.
But I think it's time they were exposed. 

Yesterday we walked. We ate. We shopped.
I mean, who could resist that little number above - even when it's not actually for her?
Not so sure she knows that.
We even talked about selling our home in suburbia, getting rid of our cars and becoming full-fledged city girls.
Or at worst, weekenders.

Until the next adventure.
in which I WILL get Julian on a subway. the end.


  1. I miss that aspect of the city. Just jumping on the TTC and being anywhere I want to go easily. We drive everywhere here. Nothing (except the school) is really walkable. And as much as I do love the transition (I mean we have deer in out backyard!) the city still feels like home.

    1. Jane I can so related .. I have been in the country (Caledon) for the past 7 years - and now that I'm back in the city more often, I am definitely feeling the pull to return full time. This past harsh winter has been helping in making the decision to return to city. As tranquil as the country is there really is something magical in the energy of the city... xo

    2. Jane/Celia,

      I forgot how convenient it was! And not having to park in the city = pure bliss.


  2. Love it - I don't take my kids into the city often enough either! You've inspired me - I need to make a date for a day in Minneapolis soon. :)

  3. YEAH!!!! that is awesome ... I can only imagine the observations Miss Ava must have come out with along your adventure. Since spending more time at my Toronto home I have started using TTC - and wondered why in all the years I lived here before I never really used it ( I think 2 or 3 times in 10 years and not by choice). Today, I'm so loving it!!!

  4. hahah you clearly have not commuted in winter and/rush hour :) it is NOT clean! every time I see a smelly homeless person sitting on one of the seats or people allowing their dogs to sit on the seats I vow never to touch any of TTC's seats again heh :) and our system is big embarrassment to the big city that Toronto has grown to be :( it's OK if you are not commuting far daily (my commute to work is 20 mins) but God forbid you're on a Yonge line - power outages between Bloor/Union or Finch/Bloor subways are very much part of our daily life here downtown.. so I'd def count the blessings that you guys don't have to come down here often! phew :)

    1. Ha! Look, we realize we were super lucky to not be travelling in rush hour, no crowds and lots of seating. We also got 2 brand spanking new trains EACH way. Seriously clean. And totally not sure I could do it everyday! Not anymore. :o

  5. fun! I walked home by myself and unlocked my door and stayed home alone for up to two hours at the age of 8!!!!??? I wont even let my kids check the mail with out stalking them from the window lol...the world is a tad bit scarier now...but still...what has suburbia done to us?? i.need.out.of.the.suburbs. also, i want to see those uniform photos....i bet they are great! :)

  6. Dearest Susan,
    Yeah, your public transportation is equal to the Dutch; that I left behind now 32 years ago and at times I really miss it. Carefree and so convenient!
    But not here in our area; there's nothing. In Atlanta you can only ride the Marta underground and some connecting Marta buses but we seldom use it, only if we have guests from abroad so they know how it is like.
    Your girls look quite happy in the city and they will develop a taste for it.


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