Award-winning chocolate chip cookies, learning how to use a typewriter, and ANOTHER race!

July 27, 2009

My weekend with my grandparents in their beautiful little beach town in Ontario was wonderful. The last few days, for me, have looked something like this:

– got lost while using a GPS. Well, we didn’t exactly get lost, but the GPS wanted us to take the scenic route to Port Elgin, gravel back roads and all. I liked the nice little adventure, but it was a good reminder that technology doesn’t always know best. Sometimes reading a map is your best bet.

– went for two runs (20 minutes and 45 minutes)* and a few long, much-needed after-dinner walks.

– ate 3 pieces of angel food cake, 14 (or was it 15? I lost count) chocolate chip cookies, 4 blueberry muffins, 7 biscuits spread with butter, and 2 (3?) blueberry/cherry tarts in addition to bowlfuls upon bowlfuls of fresh strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries. And steak. And roast chicken. And cold pork sandwiches. And mashed potatoes. And piles of raw vegetables. It was an eat-a-thon of the best sort. And my grandma’s chocolate chip cookies won an award 5o years ago! Obviously, we had to indulge in a few more cookies after hearing that news and seeing her first-place ribbon.

Devin eats a cookie:


Sagan eats a cookie (surrounded by desserts. Yum):


– finished reading The Angel’s Game. Carlos Ruiz Zafon is an excellent author and the book is brilliant (his writing is beautiful, and I’m not just saying that because he hails from Barcelona a.k.a. the city that holds my heart), but it’s a very disturbing story all the same.

– enjoyed a couple old movies, The Third Man (which has been a favourite of mine for a long time) and Monsignor Quixote (the book of which I’ve read but had never seen the film version. The movie made me just as teary-eyed as the book did. One of the best stories ever written. Graham Greene, you complete me).

– wandered and drove alongside the shore in between bouts of rain.

– engaged in many a political/philosophical/rhetorical conversation with my grandparents.

– assisted my grandma with cooking delicious food.

I loved the visit. My cookbook collection has expanded from the couple that my grandma has given me- her entire basement seems to be lined with cookbooks; it’s a foodie’s dream. A writer’s dream was also had: my grandpa pulled out his old typewriter and taught me how to use it.


I adored typing on it. I will definitely be investing in one of those in the near future. Something like that would be so much fun for writing my novel!


And we spent much of our holiday laughing together:

P7250925How was your weekend?

* The main reason for those runs was because one race this summer was apparently not enough! Almost immediately after we had finished the first race, my friend Richard (the one that I ran the 6k with) suggested we sign up for a 9k race that is scheduled for August 8th. For some reason I happily agreed to it. I’m excited! It will be very challenging, I’m sure. The 6k that I ran was actually closer to 6.5k because of the trail that we were on, and I think that my usual runs are close to 8k, so I should be able to run 9k without too much difficulty. But it definitely will not be easy! And that’s the point of a good challenge.


  1. I love the fact your grandma cooks such beautiful food but obviously has no weight issues – good food is it’s own reward.

  2. Cool typewriter! It would be so neat to type on something so mechanical rather than electronic for a change.

    As for internet directions…they have gotten me lost soooooo many times. Once, they told me to make 2 U turns in a row, effectively keeping me heading in the same direction on the same road. What was that about? Needless to say, I took those steps out…lol!!

  3. What a fun weekend 🙂 My son asked me the other day what a typewriter is (he’s 8). I thought it was funny that he had no idea!!

    On my vacation recently our GPS saved me. I get so confused in Boston & it would just turn me around if I went the wrong way (which was often!)

  4. Great post, Sagan! A little bit of modern technology (GPS) mixed with a little bit of old-fashioned technology, some exercise and terrific food thrown in….. sounds like a well-rounded weekend! 🙂

    Love the pictures – your grandparents look very cool!

    (Were your fingers sore after typing?)
    I learned to type on a typewriter similar to the one in the pictures, and I still have it. Tried it out not long ago and realized how much difference there is between that and the computer keyboard.

  5. I was in a friend’s car last year and he said when he first gave his mother a lift after getting SatNav fitted, she listened a few times to the voice saying ‘turn left at the next roundabout’ etc, then said to my friend: “Do they employ a person for every single driver? How does she know when you need her?” LOL.
    Your grandparents look great and as Sue says, it’s always good to come across people who just enjoy cooking and eating food without it having gone all complex on them. Plus I bet that when their grandaughters aren’t around they don’t do quite so much baking!
    That’s good news re the 9k run. keep us posted. I’ve just signed up for the Great South Run, 10 miles (about 16k I guess)- in Portsmouth on 25 October. My training schedule started today and have just worked out that by the time it comes round I’ll have run 224 miles! My feet are breaking out in blisters at the mere thought, but it’s all in nice easy stages. I’d never have thought of signing up for it if it weren’t for your blog. So thank you! And the National Autistic Society, that I’m asking people to sponsor my run for, will also be very grateful when I tell them 🙂

  6. Your grandma is some cookie! What a wonderful weekend you guys had, beautiful!!

  7. Have you read Shadow in the Wind also by Carlos Ruiz Zafon? It is one of my all time favorite books! I hadn’t heard of the The Angel’s Game, I’ll have to check it out, is it new? I’m so behind on my leisure reading 🙂

  8. Your grandparents look so kind and sweet! Glad you had a great time with them. And congrats for signing up for the next race!! I can’t wait to hear how that one goes, too. You’ve caught the bug!

    I love typewriters! They are just so much more fun to type on than keyboards. 🙂

  9. Sue- is it ever!

    RickiRae- too funny about the directions. Technology can be so silly.

    Lori- that makes me feel old. At 20. Next thing you know he’ll be asking what a VCR is… hehe.

    Bag Lady- I wasn’t typing on it long enough for my fingers to get sore, but those keys are hard to press down on. People must have had fingers of steel “back in the day”.

    Liz- I’m SO happy to hear about that! Email me the link where people can sponsor you for your run and I’ll post it if you like. That’s wonderful that you’re raising money for a good cause. And 224 miles… am in awe.

    Dr. J- it was excellent 🙂

    Jolene- I have Shadow in the Wind but haven’t read it yet! The Angel’s Game is new and it’s been getting amazing reviews all around. Heart the leisure reading.

    Holly- it’s bloggers like you that have given me the bug!

  10. lol, who can resist grandma’s baking and cooking? I’m so glad you had such a gorgeous and delicious time there! your grandparents sound like such sweeties!

  11. Are grandparents not the best!!!! I love to be spoiled rotten by mine.Your grandma certainly spoiled you with all that food ha! ha!That typewriter sure could be a great inspiration to write a steamy love story LOL!

  12. gotta love the race bug 😉 good luck with the training!! and what fabulous weekend! your grandparents are adorable 🙂

  13. This was just such a lovely post. I know that word is overused, but it really was. How special to spend time with your grandparents and for them to be able to share their lives with you. I don’t have any grandparents around, but I sure wish I did!

    By the way, those cookies looked awfully good! Not that I would eat any of course. . .

  14. My oh my, what a weekend!! I just celebrated with my grandfather for his 92nd birthday, and he’s still going strong. You and I are lucky to be able to still spend time with our elders.

  15. Hey Sagan,
    Awesome – cookies and cake from grandma, does it get any better than that! And how nice of you to spend time with them – I’m sure they enjoyed it very much!!

    Good luck on the upcoming run (you’ll do great!). I was out running this weekend! A 5K race on Saturday and a sprint triathlon on Sunday…followed by a nice long nap! (but no cookies…)

  16. You’re so pretty!

    I think that that kind of eat a thon is the best thing. It’s good (well, yummy) food, with your family, and you enjoy it!

    I want a typewriter too 🙂

  17. Sounds like a great weekend! I’d beg and plead for a cookie but me thinks the customs dogs would eat them 😉 Might need to visit Canada soon! I can’t believe you want to keep running too. Well, yes I can, but you know…funny haha.

  18. Oh your grandparents are so sweet!! Sounds like you had a great time. And now I’m craving your grandma’s chocolate chip cookies!

  19. I also enjoyed The Shadow of the Wind! Great book!

    I’m glad you had a good time! You are looking awesome!

  20. Thanks for sharing your vacation with us, Sagan! I’m so glad you had a great time!

  21. Loved reading about your weekend. I miss my grandma. She calls me her baby since she practically raised me as my parents were busy with their careers. Your grandparents are super cool.

    Looks like you’ve been caught by the race bug. There’s none at my city right now but I’m not letting that stop me from running my own race. Haha.

    The pictures are precious! Especially love that last one!

  22. Burpexcuzme & Nazarina- oh they sure are!

    ttfn300- darn that race bug… it’s so sneaky.

    Diane & Cammy- these kinds of weekends are so necessary for our peace of mind.

    VeggieGirl- agreed- and that their QUALITY is still going strong 😉

    Lance- I’m going to be running lots this week (no cookies required for fuel, haha). That’s awesome that you’re involved in so many races!

    Maggie- you’re so sweet 🙂

    Spring Girl- I know, it really is pretty funny. And yes! Come visit!

    Charlotte- I heart the cookies.

    Hanlie- that ones sitting on my shelf, just waiting to be read…

    Mia- Gotta love the mid-laughter 😉 Your running is so inspiring.

  23. Wow! Sounds (and looks) like a great visit! That typewriter looks awesome btw.

    Another race, huh? What training plan are you following? I’m always looking for new training plans these days! ^_^

  24. What a great post! So lucky your grandparents are still with you – my last grandparent died when I was 19, and I didn’t think to ask all the questions I thought of as I became an adult!

    Simple chocolate chip cookies are the best! 😀

  25. Aw, I’m so glad you had such a good time with your grandparents! Those cookies look amazing 🙂

  26. Just to let you know I gave you the Lovely Blog Award. 🙂

  27. Wow, I haven’t commented in awhile! Yikes. Looks like you DID have a pile of food, heh.

  28. aw! what a great weekend. I wish my grandparents were close enough but I see them only maybe every 3 years!

    I love that Jeff’s g-parents live so close and we see them all the time.


  29. Good gracious! After seeing the spread of desserts on that table, I’m surprised you didn’t eat more. I’m sure I would have indulged in quite a bit myself. 🙂

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