Things I’m loving this week

The ATO and The CRA

This week I’m loving the ATO (Australian Taxation Office)  and the CRA (Canadian Revenue Agency).  Weird right and not something you hear often, someone actually loving two of the most hated government agencies.

Having previously been a small business owner the ATO would often be a name muttered under my breath along with several expletives in the same sentence.  What has brought on this sudden love fest?

Well, when you leave Australia as a permanent resident before the end of the income year (1st July to 30th June) you are able to lodge an early tax return.  In our case, the tax year starts 1st July and we left Australia in October so a large % of the tax paid in those 4 months is being returned to us.  We have been able to submit the return before the financial year actually ends in July.  Thank you Australian Government!

The Canadian Tax year is 1st January to 31st December and so when the Canadian filed his Canadian return having only worked for one month the tax was also returned to us.  Thank you Canadian Government!

Win/Win and a windfall that will only happen once and then next year we will be back to cursing them both.

** Disclaimer, please don’t take any tax advice from me or for that matter any kind of financial advice.  If you recall in my previous blog post I dropped out of Vege Maths for dummies in high school and paid $54.00 for a tiny piece of salmon at the markets last week.  The 9-year-old would be much more qualified to give financial advice than me.

Anyway, because I’m such a financial whiz,  there is only one thing to do with this lottery like win and that is to blow the lot on our latest addiction, Lobster Rolls!!!

Where can we find a plethora of Lobster Rolls?   Well, New England of course!   We are hitting the frog and toad and heading on a road trip this weekend to Cape Cod and Martha’s Vineyard.  I am so excited, I plan on going on a seafood binge-fest and only dining on Lobster, Lobster Rolls, Lobster Legs, Crab Cakes, Crab Legs, Clam Chowder and the odd Lobster Bisque for good measure.   I plan on returning to Toronto in a Lobster Roll coma.

Bliss and hopefully not an inch of seafood extender insight.

We are catching the car ferry from Cape Cod, Massachusetts and so out of safety concerns if I see a single Kennedy getting on that ferry we will miss it and get on the next one.

It’s a part of the States I’m yet to visit and think we should before that border wall goes up between Canada and the USA.

The Canadian’s Employer

Loving them because they hold season tickets for the Baseball and we scored the work tickets for the game tonight.   Blue Jays are playing like crap at the moment but I’m looking forward to some lips and ass hole hot dogs for dinner.  Love me some delicious mystery meat and maybe a brewski or three.

The Weather

After a slow and then stop start Spring (we even had snow flurries on Sunday morning) the skies are now blue, the temperature is rising and the trees are green with leaves again.

I had hoped to see the Cherry Blossoms in High Park but the trees have been acting Cray, Cray due to the all over the place weather.   Yesterday the 9-year-old and I did get to see the beautiful blossoms at Osgoode Hall.  I’m not sure what kind of blossoms they are but they look amazing.

osgoode hall blossoms 4

osgoode hall blossoms 5

If you follow me on Instagram I am also loving the spring flowers in planters around the city  and have been doing a bit of flower spam posting on my account #planterboxspam

It blows me away the amount of bulb’s flowering at the moment in downtown Toronto.  In parks and gardens, planter boxes outside apartment buildings and office blocks, hanging baskets and planters on patio restaurants.  I have even spotted flowering planter boxes on the road between the cycle tracks and the footpaths.  The colours are just gorgeous.


Dog Feeder

Downtown Toronto has a huge homeless population and many of the homeless living on the streets in our area seem to have dogs.  More often than not they own multiple dogs.   I have often wondered how they care for the dogs when they don’t seem to be doing a very good job caring for themselves.   Today I saw a guy that drives around and in the boot of his car, he had giant plastic tubs with dry dog food, dog toys and I think worming tablets etc.   He just looked like a regular Joe driving around and stopping when he spied a homeless person with dogs to give the dogs a feed or anything else they may need.  Just outstanding!

What are you loving this week?

Follow me on Instagram for upcoming Lighthouse and Lobster Roll Spam!



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  • joannesisco

    I like the sound of your week! Two tax refunds (2!!!), an upcoming vacation, free Blue Jay tickets, and the Mother Nature in a hurry for everything to bloom and look gorgeous. Make sure you’ve bought your lottery tickets. It appears you’re on a lucky streak 🙂

  • Maple Bacon Please!

    I know right? Fantastic week. Although I have just been phoning around re Travel Insurance and I’m not feeling so lucky about it. I have a pre-existing condition that isn’t usually a problem when it comes to travel insurance and is controlled. I have however needed to change my prescription because the drug I was on from Australia has just run out and is not available in Canada so I was given an alternative. This has happened within the last 90 days and so rules me out with every single travel insurance company I have phoned for my pre-existing condition (even the companies who’s target market is old people)

    Makes me so nervous travelling to the US without full coverage. I would need a winning lottery ticket to pay for a US hospital bill $$$$

  • Lynn

    Wow, sounds like you are on a roll😂! Oh man, I seriously should have been a comedienne. Sorry to hear about the insurance thing. Hopefully pre-existing is nothing serious. Have a fabulous runaway!

    • Maple Bacon Please!

      Thanks, Lynn.

      It’s so weird because I never read the fine print and I’m so glad I did and it was the same on about half a dozen different policy’s I looked into …. sheesh those insurance companies are slippery.

      My pre-existing is totally fine and nothing to worry about but the slightest technicality like changing your medicine in the last 90 days despite your condition being stable rules you of coverage. Stuff like that annoys me because you really have to go searching for it to find it.

      Thanks to my friend Google and way too many hours searching on the net, I have found some insurance at the 11th hour that allows a medicine change over 30 days instead of 90 days.

      The US is the worst … I once had the flu in the US that needed antibiotics and for a Doctors Visit, Chest x-ray and medication my insurance company at the time paid $5000.

      Have a great weekend!

  • Jean Buettel

    Hi Danielle, I am a friend of your Aunt Carol and she put me on to your blog which I have been following for some time. I really got a laugh about the blog you did with the medical system over there. We left Kitchener, Ontario (close to Toronto) about 45 years ago but we keep going back to see family. We were there in March and amazed at the weather still being so crappy. Our Toronto friends organised a surprise lunch with my brother and sister in law at Osgood Hall. The look on my brothers face was great..he thought he was hallucinating because we had talked to him from Australia on Facebook saying the lunch at the Law Society might be a bit stuffy. You know you can go all through the building and get their history. You mentioned the hanging baskets and flowers. Wait until the summer. Every little town has hanging baskets and even more so in BC. they have to make the best of the summer months. I hope you enjoy your summer, Martha’s and get the Blue Jays to get their act together.
    I love your sense of humour and all the effort you put into your blogs.
    Jean from Gloucester NSW

    • Maple Bacon Please!

      Hi Jean,

      Thanks for reading the blog and I’m glad you are enjoying it!

      Everyone told me how much I will hate the weather before we moved but I must be weird because I absolutely love it! Before the move, we had been living in Brisbane for the last 10 years and I told The Canadian I could not possibly spend another summer in the heat.
      I think I am much more of a cold weather climate person (just not extremes like Winnipeg)
      I’m also love having season changes because Brisbane is basically summer all year long. It makes you appreciate each season as they come along.

      Thanks for the tip re Osgood, I will have to check it outside inside, it’s such a beautiful building.

      The weekend after next is Open Doors Toronto where you can do tours and access 130 buildings that are usually closed or off limits. I plan on checking out a few things that weekend.

      Thanks for your message, I love hearing back.

  • Master of Something Yet

    I had the same thing with the tax office when I left work to have our first child but in my case I had to wait. I’d been in a very high paying job so the tax I got back was pretty much enough to go to Japan for a holiday…. (Those were the days when high income earners paid a decent amount of tax. Or, you know, any tax. Or maybe I was just too honest….)

    I am in lobster envy hell. The only time we eat lobster (or rather crayfish) is at Christmas and we buy a teeny tiny one and share it with 15 people. You get a mouthful, basically. I hope you get to eat yourself lobster sick.

  • TheLastWord

    Cape Cod is a lovely place. We were there for my younger brother’s wedding over 10 years ago. Thus, didn’t get to Martha’s Vineyard. I want to go back one of these days, without the social stuff to distract us. I also want to visit Boston and surrounding areas again. I was last there on a day trip around the new year 1995/96. Wow, 20 years ago!!

    Nice to get 2 refunds! Normally, they find a way to extract more from you…. 🙂

    • Maple Bacon Please!

      With a limited amount of time for our break, I had to choose between Martha’s Vineyard or Nantucket and found the decision tough. I would love to go back again and do a trip to Nantucket because it appears to have a totally different look and feel to Martha’s Vineyard despite them being so close.

      We are planning on doing a New England – Boston trip in the fall so we can see the foliage change colours. It has always been on my bucket list.

      • TheLastWord

        Oh, fall is fantastic. I have a brother who lives in Connecticut. I love the area. I’ve been there in all seasons and each time it’s great. Second home for me, almost.

  • pw19

    And with regard to street people and their dogs. It’s something I see lots of in Vancouver too, and it surprised me too. I’m told it’s companionship, and I also know the BC SPCA provides free pet food and care.

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