How to Hire a Fee for Service Lawyer without a Retainer in Toronto

January 26th, 2017

Unbundled services, A la carte services and Limited Scope reatainer are the three search terms you need to know if you are trying to hire a lawyer to help you with only certain parts of a legal matter, without a hefty retainer.

This is a common way of doing business in the US and is slowly, and I mean slowly, gaining popularity in Canada.

If you’re like me, you might have a need for these services, but don’t know what to search for. I searched for days and days trying to find help, using the best terms I could muster. I tried; Lawyers who work a la carte, fee for service lawyers and probably “No retainer lawyer”.

I’m here to tell you: the search terms are “unbundled legal services” and “limited scope retainer” and it means that you will be self-represented, but a lawyer will help you – for a pre-determined fee, usually payable up front – draft a letter, craft a defence, strategize for trial etc…You pick the service. You agree on a price. It’s revolutionary.

Here’s a good article:

And here’s a good guy:

You’re welcome! Spread the word.


Panda Bears and Prime Ministers

October 19th, 2016
a tale of two prime ministers

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau vs former Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper holding pandas.

Mexico City Launches Video Web Series With Celebrity Designer Genevieve Gorder

April 16th, 2016

Travelers today demand rich, authentic cultural experiences rather than simply ticking landmarks off their sightseeing checklist. To showcase the city’s flourishing design scene and breadth of offerings available to sophisticated, culture seeking travelers, the Mexico City Tourism Trust (Fondo Mixto de Promoción Turística del Distrito Federal) partnered with celebrity designer Genevieve Gorder to launch a video series highlighting her picks for design tips, trends and treasures in Mexico City.

The six-part series immerses viewers in local cultural vignettes as Gorder shares her favorite places to shop, stay, find inspiration and source authentic design pieces in the Mexican Capital. Viewers follow along on the HGTV star’s journey as she meets with up-and-coming designers and brings her interior designer’s eye to the artisan creations available in shopping hotspots.

Her onsite interviews and expert tips educate viewers on the products, places and experiences that are both distinctive to the destination as well as position the capital city as a forward-thinking international design hub. From colorful, open air markets abundant with traditional Mexican creations, to upscale boutiques offering the latest international trends, Mexico City is truly a top design city.

Engaging with consumers around their passions, like design, is an important way for Mexico City to ignite the curiosity that ultimately leads travelers to the destination. The series is hosted on, the official Tourism Promotion Partner website, as well as the @MexicoCityLive YouTube and social media channels. To view the videos, visit

Through her videos, Gorder educates viewers on experiences available to travelers of varying interests, including:

La Ciudadela
This open air market in the heart of Mexico City brings together traditional tourist souvenirs and artisanal products from all over Mexico. Here, Gorder expertly navigates the treasure trove to find eclectic decorative items that demand a story. Zeroing in on hand-painted figures and hammocks, Gorder provides viewers with a bit of history, a dash of geology, and some practical design tips. For more information visit

Onora Casa
Located in Polanco, the heart of upscale designer and home décor shopping, Onora Casa brings centuries-old techniques to high end home design. Gorder talks with New York City transplant and Co-Founder Maggie Galton about her vision for rescuing traditional methods, and reveals the true craftsmanship behind the sophisticated textiles and housewares. For more information visit

La Metropolitana
Gorder takes viewers behind the scenes at La Metropolitana, a burgeoning furniture design firm that is transforming Mexican design and redefining what “Made in Mexico” means. At the factory, the young owners discuss their process before heading to the showroom where visitors can find a piece to take home with them. For more information visit

Blend Concept Store
Blend is a concept store and designer showroom dedicated to selling the latest designs from Mexico. Viewers follow Gorder as she shops her favorite trends and Mexican designers. For more information visit

Hotel Carlota
This design hotel is one of the newest hot spots in the city. Gorder explores the property’s distinct architectural and decorative elements with Javier Sanchez, the architect behind the project, who has led the design with his firm, JSa Architects, from inception to creation. For more information visit

Claudia Fernández Vintage Furniture
An artist, philanthropist and vintage furniture dealer, Fernandez is an expert of all things midcentury modern design. Gorder gives viewers VIP access into her appointment-only showroom filled with treasures from this iconic period, from intricate light fixtures to bar carts.

Mexico City is the country’s premier tourism destination, welcoming more than 12.5 million visitors a year. As the number one destination on The New York Times “52 Places to Go in 2016” list, there’s never been a better time to visit. The ancient capital offers a vibrant, contemporary culture that combines pre-Hispanic, colonial and modern influences that span nearly seven centuries. With more than 150 museums, 100 contemporary local art galleries and 30 distinct architectural and historic sites, the city is a mecca of fine art and treasures that speak to its vast history. The Mexico City Tourism Promotion Fund (Fondo Mixto de Promoción Turística del Distrito Federal) supports and enhances city tourism. For more information, news and updates on travel to Mexico City, visit and follow us on Facebook (, Twitter (@MexicoCityLive) and Instagram (@MexicoCityLive).

Simple Guacamole Recipe

April 16th, 2016

Guacamoli recipe


4 avocados
4 Tbsp. lemon juice
½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. black pepper
¼ tsp. garlic
1 medium tomato – seeded and diced

Cut the avocados in half and remove the pits.
Remove the pulp with a spoon and put into a mixing bowl.
With a fork, mash the pulp until it has a coarse texture.
Add lemon juice, salt, pepper, garlic, mix well.
Stir in tomato.

Best Cornbread Muffin Recipe

April 16th, 2016
Cornbread muffin recipe

Cornbread muffin recipe

3/4 cup cornmeal
1 1/4 cups (level) all purpose flour
1 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp salt
2 large eggs
2 Tbsp honey
3/4 cup milk (whole preferred, low fat works) – I used buttermilk
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F)
2. Line muffin pan with liners or use non-stick spray
3. In large bowl, whisk together cornmeal, flour, baking powder, sugar and salt
4. In separate bowl, break up eggs with a whisk. Whisk in honey then milk. Add milk mixture and melted butter to dry ingredients. Stir until just blended. Do not over mix (a couple of lumps are ok).
5. Spoon batter evenly into prepared muffin pan – filling each cup almost full. Bake 17-20 minutes or until tops are set and golden. Cool muffins for a few minutes in the pan and serve warm.

IKEA Announces $99 Flat Rate Delivery in Canada

February 18th, 2016

IKEA Canada announces $99 flat rate delivery for people living inside Zone 1. Simply place your order with an IKEA respresentative instore, jump the queue to pay, and your order will be delivered to you at a convenient time of your choosing.

Great for people who go to IKEA planning to buy a mirror and some towels and end up with a whole BILLY shelving unit and a new sectional sofa.

That would be me. Everytime.

Available at these IKEA stores:

IKEA Boucherville
IKEA Burlington
IKEA Calgary
IKEA Coquitlam
IKEA Edmonton
IKEA Etobicoke
IKEA Montreal
IKEA North York
IKEA Ottawa
IKEA Richmond
IKEA Vaughan
IKEA Winnipeg

We’re not sure what ‘Zone 1″ is, but it has an asterisk beside it, so there must be some fine print. Ask before you buy!

Free Entry to Canada’s National Parks in 2017:

February 18th, 2016

Free Entry to Canada’s National Parks in 2017

Free Entry to Canada’s National Parks in 2017:

Free Entry to Canada’s National Parks in 2017:


To mark Canada’s 150th anniversary, Parks Canada will waive ALL entry fees into the country’s beautiful national parks for the entire year! If you haven’t had a chance to experience Canada’s lush landscapes, this will be the year to do it. Enjoy free entry from coast to coast. Happy exploring!

Mary Poppins Play in Toronto Fall 2015

September 14th, 2015

Mary Poppins has landed in Toronto again – but this time, it’s not the big downtown theatres that are presenting the spectacle.

Win free Mary Poppins tickets in Toronto

If a smaller stage and a more affordable pricepoint are more your cup of tea, check out Mary Poppins at the Lower Ossington Theatre!

Located in Toronto’s West End, Lower Ossington has a great assortment of family friendly plays this season – Joseph, Shrek, The Buddy Holly Story – to name a few.

And ticket prices start at about half the price of downtown’s larger theatres. Expect excellent actors, great costuming and high production values!

My Netflix Won’t Work – It Keeps Stopping

April 29th, 2014

Streaming your Netflix through a blu-ray player like we are?

Does it keep stopping, or cutting out, or locking up like ours does?

Here’s what to do:

Change your Netflix playback settings so you’re streaming less bandwidth.

Here’s how:

1. Login to your Netflix account on your computer
2. Go to your profile in the upper right hand of the home page.
3. On the dropdown menu, select “Your Account”
4. A pop up window will appear. In the “Your Profile” area – choose “Playback Settings.”

Netflix defaults to “Automatic” which means that Netflix will take note of how fast and slick your Internet stream is and will throttle the bandwith accordingly.

In our case, we have a white-lightning fast internet connection, but we’re streaming Netflix through a ho-hum Blu-Ray player – which can’t keep up and is always crapping out. We fixed that with this next step:

5. Select LOW – (Basic video quality, up to .3 GB per hour)
6. Click save, and Bob’s your Uncle.

This will *probably* slow down your internet stream enough for your crappy BluRay player to be able to follow along.

It worked for us. (Of course, it does mean you’re not getting super-crisp lovely picture quality, but it should get you through while you decide what upgrade you need to stream Netflix properly.

BTW, you can also set your preferences here to have Netflix STOP automatically playing the next episode of whatever you’re watching, so you don’t spend all day watching Orange is the New Black etc…

Toronto Outdoor Skating Rinks Open on March Break

February 27th, 2014

City of Toronto thanks Canadian Tire and Scotiabank for sponsoring outdoor rinks

The City of Toronto will receive $270,000 from Canadian Tire and Scotiabank to keep an additional 11 outdoor ice rinks open through March Break until March 16, weather permitting. There are currently 17 rinks open until the end of March Break. Today’s sponsorship announcement brings the total number of outdoor rinks that will remain open to 28.

The 28 outdoor rinks open until March 16 are located at:

Alexandra Park/Harry Gairey
Broadlands Community Centre
Cedarvale Park
Colonel Sam Smith Park
Dieppe Park
Dufferin Grove Park
Giovanni Caboto
Glen Long Community Centre
Greenwood Park
High Park
Humber Valley Rink
Irving W Chapley Community Centre
Kew Gardens
Mel Lastman Square
Monarch Park
Nathan Phillips Square
Otter Creek Centre
Ramsden Park
Regent Park North
Regent Park South
Rennie Park
Riverdale Park East
Scarborough Civic Centre
Sir Adam Beck Rink
Sunnydale Acres Rink
Trinity Bellwoods Park
West Mall Rink
Westway Outdoor Rink

More information is available at: