Andorra Lodge, Temagami Review

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Andorra Lodge, Temagami ON http://andorralodge.net/

Have you ever been to a place and thought this is a dream come true? Have you ever dreamed of staying in a cabin out in the woods with the natural sounds of the forest bringing peace to your busy and hectic life? This was a dream come true. We discovered this oasis nestled in the Temagami area called Andorra Lodge.

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Barbara and Gerhard Kleinboeck: Owners of Andorra Lodge.

Barbara and Gerhard Kleinboeck, the owners of this great place, have become close friends over the last 15 years we have  vacationed here. Their hospitality, great cooking and hard work put into making the cottages pristine and super comfortable will assure your stay is memorable for years to come. You’ll be hard-pressed to find even a summer resort that compares.

We often count the days leading up to our week away from the hustle and bustle of the big smoke of Toronto. Some people take trips to tropical destinations all over the world. We feel the small amount of money we spend at the lodge is a steal for the quality you get in return. I wouldn’t even bother looking anywhere else… this is it!

Let me begin by telling you a bit about the cottages. They are sturdy log cabin style cottages with the interiors master crafted by Gerhard himself with solid wood trim, walls and ceilings. Even some of the tables, benches and bedframes are hand built out of wood. It’s amazing! You have all your amenities for a comfortable stay. The kitchen has a full size fridge, gas stove, coffee maker, toaster and all the quality dishes and utensils you need to cook your gourmet meals. If you don’t feel like cooking you have to take advantage of Barbara’s cuisine. Her German background comes through in the delicious meals she can prepare for you. The beds are very comfortable spacious and super clean with all the linens you need. My Finnish background really got excited when I found out they had an outdoor wood burning cedar Sauna with the lake just footsteps away for a refreshing dip to cool off.

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A Lovely Deck, a Cedar Sauna and beautiful clean cottages, what more can you want.

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Tuula and Paul Redditt from Brampton ON

If you’re more of the outdoorsy type there are limitless places to venture off on day trips hiking and kayaking. Or maybe you prefer the motor boats to travel the large expanse of Net Lake fishing or you can even rent a canoe for a quieter trip on the lake. I have to tell you there are some BIG fish out there! Check out these bass that we caught. There are lots out there so come prepared with live bait and your favourite Rapala lures. The kayaks provided are free to use on the lake or river. They are perfect  if you want to take the family out to some smaller lakes exploring. Very pretty scenery with waterlilies and birch trees shading you from the hot sun.
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If you are the type to just sit back with a glass of wine on the Muskoka chairs or chaise lounges on the beach reading your favourite book while the men are out fishing you can do that to your heart’s content. Time goes by slowly here and there is never any rush to do anything. You can finish off your day roasting marshmallows at the bon fire on the beach. When it’s time to sleep you can be rest assured  peace and quiet from the surrounding forest and the rustling of the leaves in the nighttime breeze. This is our natural oasis nestled in the North called…  Andorra Lodge.

Thank you Barbara and Gerhard for sharing your little slice of paradise!

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Tuula Redditt “My Grass Roots”

This blog is a story about “Simplicity” and how less is more and how in life the simplest of details can be most beautiful.

When I was in art college 30 years ago we had an assignment in research drawing that required us to bring a drawing that we made in of nature and the teacher would critique it. The morning of my class while having breakfast I decided what I wanted to draw. That week I learned how to do a 30 second blind contour drawing where you didn’t look at your paper at all while drawing. Instead you focused on looking at the image you were drawing and blindly letting your hand move around and through the image without lifting your pencil off the paper…in 30 seconds. I decided I would draw a blade of grass. It was so simple yet beautiful with it’s slender blades.

As we arrived in class I was reluctant to put my picture up because everyone had put so much effort into drawing every little detail of a tree or bouquet of flowers. My drawing stood out like a sore thumb and I could hear chuckles from the other students. As the teacher examined the drawings looking closely at all the details an just walking past mine barely glancing at it…I had an uncomfortable feeling.

The teacher began by congratulating everyone on a job well done. He began by saying,”Out of all the beautifully detailed drawings we have in front of us there is one drawing that stands out. This one.”

As he points to my drawing I try to hide. The teacher then points out that the reason why this one is my favorite is because of it’s simple beauty and that sometimes the simplest of drawings can be the most beautiful. He asked who drew this and I raised my hand and the other students no longer chuckled.

To this day I use this advice in a lot of my work and the minute I think I need to add more I think twice about what my teacher said.

“Life is like a blade of grass in the morning breeze, reaching up to embrace simplicity.”

Tuula Redditt

My 1st Website Experience

My WordPress Blog Post:
Toastmasters is a great opportunity to talk about your experiences in front of other people. Describing my process in which I developed my 1st website will hopefully help me teach others and help other small businesses develop a web presence. This is how I did it.

Index or Home page: The process by which my site was created was a great journey. I started by taking the template site that was provided, saving the 4 pages to my hard drive along with copies of the portrait graphic and sessions logo. I then replaced elements such as the portrait with my own, the header with our Sky Studio logo embedded into the banner background using Photoshop. I copied and pasted the code from another student’s site that had a banner instead of the default title text and replaced it with my own design. Once the graphical elements were taken care of I replaced the title and body text with my own and changed the background colour for each page by changing the hexadecimal colour codes in each of the 4 HTML files opened up in Notepad.
At this stage I registered and created accounts and profiles for the following Web 2.0 sites: YouTube, Flicker, Facebook and WordPress. I uploaded a short yoga instruction video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EQDv-0jCJUQ . I uploaded photos and created a slideshow that I added to my Flicker account of photos in Hawaii and paintings that I have created https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EQDv-0jCJUQ . In WordPress I created a blog about my Toastmasters experience https://tuularedditt.wordpress.com/2013/01/28/my-toastmasters-experience/
Links page: Once all these were set up I added the code required to link up with each on this page.
Videos page: This is where I pasted the code according to the instructions to have my video on YouTube ready to play.
Images page: This is where I pasted the code according to the instructions to have my slideshow in Flicker ready to play.
Before I began placing my files online I added 3 buttons to link up with my Facebook, Twitter, linkedin and Flicker Photostream page. I also added keywords and descriptions to optimize my site for search engines and crawlers.
Now I was ready to get a domain name and hosting though GoDaddy https://ca.godaddy.com
Testing the pages from my desktop I came across an issue that needed to be resolved before I went further. From each of the pages my links to the other pages didn’t work. After searching through other student’s code that were working I still couldn’t find anything that worked. Posing the question to my instructor she said, “By default the links may be going to the Sessions site and you may need to change them to local links to your other files.”
I found out this wasn’t the issue. Analyzing the code I stumbled across the code identifying the file names for the other pages with the extension .html . My HTML files had the extension .htm . When I edited the code to reflect this, the links worked. Hooray!
Once the files were uploaded again to my host and working properly I was ready to evaluate the statistics. I registered for google analytics to check using my site’s rank, visitor information web traffic.
The last item I did once completing this blog was submit both my blogs on WordPress. I’m sure the rating wasn’t very good because I couldn’t find it.
Plan for my Future Web Presence:
To start the tools that I would like to use would have to be the following :
1) Social network such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to distribute to people I already know.
2) YouTube is a very useful tool to spread popularity of my yoga instruction, inspirational life coach speeches through Toastmasters International which is all over the world.
3) Also art instruction blog pages on  our website which will be used for advertising our artwork capability and past projects.
4) Posting blogs on wordpress with links to my site.
5) Finally a private portfolio site that can be viewed only by future clients on FTP.
I hope you enjoyed my speech today on creating a website and I welcome everyone to come check out mine.
Welcome to my 1st website for “Sky Studio”!
Sky Studio

My Toastmasters Experience

I have been involved with Toastmasters now for over 7 years and the experience has been outstanding. What used to be a shy red faced girl, not able to utter a word in front of a group, now manages clubs all over Brampton and presents inspirational and motivational speeches for groups of over 100 people.
Toastmasters International is a non-profit organization with clubs scattered all over the world. It has helped me professionally improve my communication and leadership skills. It has also helped me step out of my comfort zone and do things in life that I never imagined I could do. It’s an experience that everyone should seek to endeover.

Happy Toasty-time!

In addition to this post here are some links to my
YouTube video and Flickr profile:

Flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/92662549@N03/

Tuula Yoga in Hawaii https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-xs5Nh1Es8w

WordPress https://tuularedditt.wordpress.com/2013/01/28/my-toastmasters-experience/