Sunday, June 29, 2008


Next to Victoria, Vancouver is a favourite city of Meredith and I. We love just going in for the day and hanging out. Saturday, June 28th we did just that. Our first stop was in the fun, funky shopping district of Kitsilano. I`ve driven by there many times but never stopped. Saturday was a perfect day for shopping. We didn`t buy a whole lot but we had a great time exploring all the shops. Book stores, chocolate shops, clothing botiques and more. We also stopped in at Capers market and while I was drooling over the cheese, one of the staff gave us a sample of this one. Yes, you read that right ``Drunken Goat`` Goat`s Milk Cheese. It`s a wonderfully smooth cheese that has been soaked in red wine which gives it a burgundy rind. Yummy.

After shopping we walked a couple of blocks to Kitsilano beach where we had a picnic lunch. For some reason, I didn`t take any pictures (aside from the one of the cheese which I actually took at home)

After our picnic we headed over to Robson Street for more shopping. Mere bought a dress at the Gap and I got a cd at HMV. We had drinks at the Cactus Club and then decided to get out of the city. My solution was to drive up Burnaby Mountain. There is a *beautiful* view of the city and the inlet there. It gives a great apprecation for Vancouver as a port city.

So there, nothing earth shattering, just another pleasant day enjoying one of the best cities in the world :)

Friday, June 27, 2008

CP Spirit of 150 Rail Tour

This year British Columbia is celebrating 150 years as a Crown Colony. There are many events being organized around the province and the first one I was able to take in was the CP Spirit of 150 Rail Tour.

From the website: From June 12 to July 6, the CP Spirit of 150 Rail Tour will visit British Columbia communities along the Canadian Pacific route. The tour is co-sponsored by Canadian Pacific, which will operate, staff and maintain the train.

The CP Spirit of 150 Train includes the vintage CP 2816 Empress Steam Train and support cars, two vintage passenger coaches, a vintage business car, a heritage baggage car converted into a travelling museum and a vintage stage car.
The train rolled in to my hometown just before 5pm on Thursday, June 26th. It's previous stop was the town where I work so I actually got to see it travelling between the two. (That's the picture above, the train merrily steaming it's way across the flats. I took it while I was stopped at a red light.)

The train was in town from 5-9 and I spent the first two hours of the evening volunteering at the BerryBeat Festival booth (BerryBeat is next week. Watch here for updates :)) The best part about being in the booth was that I had a front row seat for the stage show. Unfortunately I didn't think to take pictures :(

After my shift in the booth Mom and Dad came down and we toured the museum car together.

The museum car will feature a compact version of Free Spirit: Stories of You, Me and BC, the BC150 exhibition currently on display at the Royal BC Museum. A stage show and costumed performers depicting some of B.C.’s most entertaining and notorious historical figures will help bring history to life.

There was looooong wait to get on the museum car and frankly, I was pretty underwhelmed by the display. There were a few neat things though. Right is a copy of the original declaration establishing BC as a crown colony.

This picture shows the infamous "Flood of '48" when the Fraser Valley was covered in water. (It's a big historical deal around here)

The train is CPR's Empress 2816 Steam Locomotive
CP's 2816 is a class H1b Hudson type locomotive built by Montreal Locomotive Works in December 1930. The CP Empress is now the only surviving H1b Hudson and is one of only a handful of preserved and operating CPR steam locomotives in North America.

Initially the locomotive ran westward out of Winnipeg to Calgary and eastward to Fort William, Ontario (now part of Thunder Bay). Locomotive 2816 then moved into service on the Windsor-to-Quebec City corridor. Its last assignment was at the front of a Montreal-Rigaud commuter train, making its final revenue run on May 26, 1960. Having logged more than two million miles in active service, 2816's fires were extinguished.

It's an impressive machine. Note that the wheel is taller than my dad!

They also had this engine which Google tells me is a "Passenger Extra 1401 South", the Canadian Pacific's luxury passenger train.

I love trains so it was neat to see these beauties in the downtown.

What happiness looks like

Thursday, June 26, 2008


I didn't plan this but I'll take it.

11:30 - lunch with Meredith at Starbucks. Grande-no-water-no-foam-extra-hot-soy-tazo-chai
1:30 - mid afternoon coffee from a fresh (very STRONG) pot that my coworker made
2:45 - double double from Tim Horton's courtesy of the auditors

That's my first double double ever. I usually drink French Vanilla Cappacino's there. This was good, sweet in a sugary sort of way (obviously since Double Double means two cream, two sugar). The donut didn't help either!

So now I'm on a sugar high and I should have a carb crash coming but will be over-run by the caffeine high. Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

Stuff that doesn't get it's own entry...

As I was coming down the hill on the way to Mike's on Saturday the traffic coming towards me was stopped. The SUV at the front of the line was flashing his lights at me and I realized it was because this momma and her babies were crossing!
I am sporting my first official sign of summer...well...second if you count the burn I got in Victoria. Anyways, the next official sign? BUG BITES! I have a huge one on my ankle. Actually, it might be more than one. It's nasty though and ITCHY!
I met my dad for lunch yesterday and Meredith today. I love meeting people for lunch. It's not a lot of time but it breaks the day up. If you're in the area, look me up!
I got my meet and greet with Dierks approved for the concert in Calgary at the Stampede. I can't wait!!!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Melissa & Jevon

Saturday Melissa and Jevon were married in a simple fun ceremony at Minoru Chapel in Richmond. I drove in with Mike and we found the Chapel relatively easy (there's something about Richmond. I always get lost there. It's very annoying).

Minoru Chapel is very popular for weddings and we saw at least two other brides waiting for their turns. There was also a large graduating class getting their pictures taken in the garden beside the Chapel.
The ceremony was wonderful. It was very simple. Just a brief message by the pastor, the vows, exchanging of the rings and the signing of the registrar. They had a harpist playing and after the ceremony the bells rang out which was a nice touch.

The reception was at the Delf Room in Richmond. They had cream puffs instead of a cake and, since cream puffs need to be kept cold, they actually did the cake "cutting" first! That was different for me but it worked. I've been to so many weddings were the cake was forgotten. This way the kitchen staff had time to serve it and it was enjoyed by everyone when the desserts were put out.

After the cake cutting there were a handful of speeches. Melissa's dad did a wonderful one that had everyone (including himself) in tears. Then Jevon's mom shared some stories and lastly, the maid of honour, Chelsea gave a toast to her friend. After the speeches we had a wonderful buffet dinner and then visited and danced all night. I even caught the boquet (that's the fourth time if anyone's counting)

L-R: Highschool friends forever. Jenna, Heidi, Melissa, Kimberley and Mike.

Three weddings down, one to go, this year.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Don't Blink

Last night I had the priviledge of attending a retirement celebration for two men who dedicated their lives to our industry. I didn't know either of them very well but, as I posted before, one of them was on our board of directors for over 10 years and I have associated with him on a few projects since I started with this organization. Mostly my boss and I were there to represent our company.

Anyways, after a buffet dinner there were a number of speeches and then an open mike time. Every person that got up thanked both of the men for their hard work, dedication, sense of humour and mentoring over the years. They ribbed them a bit and shared stories (some of which were probably best left UN-repeated) but all were shared with lots of respect. There were even a few tears shed and they were all genuine.

After everyone had a chance to share their thank you's, the two men who were being honoured were called upon. The first one was very uncomfortable with public speaking but his words were so heartfelt. Basically he said thank you to everyone for their kind words. Then he paused and said "it all goes by in a blink of an eye. I will miss coming in to the office each morning but I'm excited to experience some new things".

It made me think of the Kenny Chesney song "Don't Blink". But here I was, witnessing it live.

The second gentleman, the one I am familiar with, also said thank you and pointed out that this would have been the 41st wedding anniversary for himself and his now-decesed wife. Everyone choked up and we all raised our glasses in a toast. Very cool.

At the beginning of the night, one of the first people I saw when I walked in to the banquet room was my grade one teacher!!! I was able to visit with her for almost 20 minutes and we caught up. She's still teaching and absolutely loving it. She was an incredible teacher. I still have wonderful memories of that class. I told her that Sara just got married and that I am still friends with Meredith. Both of them were in that class together. It was neat to be able to see her again. Sort of my own "Don't Blink" moment!

Friday, June 20, 2008

I could get used to this

Last night was Melissa's bachelorette party. We met up at The New Revue Stage on Graville Island in Vancouver for a night of Improv. There were two shows starting with "Raiders of the Lost Improv". A semi scripted stage show that incorporated suggestions from the audience. The story line was "Windy Stones" and various other characters searching for the sacred flamingo. They had to get it before the RHINO's (they made that into an acronym) got it and assembled an army of monkeys. It was really well done.

The second act was "Ultimate Improv Championship". It's described as "Vancouver's most dangerous improv is part wit, part fight club. Every Thursday two blood-thirsty teams of improvisers go head-to-head - each team improvising for 30 minutes nonstop. The audience determines who will be the Ultimate Improv Champion, with the winning team returning the following week to defend their title."

The second team was fantastic. They stuck to one story line for the entire 30 minutes and had me doubled over in laughter.

After the show we headed back to Rachel's (Melissa's future sister-in-law's) where we watched "Never Been Kissed", ate pizza, drank pina coladas and did our nails and stuff. It was a late night but it was really relaxed and fun.

Today I have a work dinner thing to go to. Because it qualifies as work time I was able to come in late this morning. It's kind of nice to just show up whenever you want to :D I could get used to this!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Thought of the Day

If you're smoking I'll assume you're on fire and put you out!

That is the sign that Grandma M had hanging in their entry way. I love it :)

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Looking for the silver lining

I lost my library card. I know it's not a big deal in the grand scheme of thing but it's *weird* because I use my library card ALL the time and I have NO idea where it is (which is why it qualifies as "lost") Anyways, I finally broke down and got a new one. Now I think losing my old one was divine intervention.

Our library has an excellent online system where you can view what you have checked out along with due dates, renew items, search the whole catalog and request books and have them delivered to whichever branch you want to pick them up from. It's very convenient and I use it all the time.

The library also has internet access and I've been using it more and more because it's really convenient, especially on the weekends.

For both of these functions you have to log into the system using your library card number and a pin number. I could not for the life of me memorize my last library card number. I tried, I practiced, I couldn't get it so I finally gave up and just pulled it out of my wallet every time I needed it.

This new card though? I had the number memorized the second time I used it!!! It's very logical with lots of repeating numbers. Having the number memorized is so much more convenient and I now no longer mourn the loss of my old card.

Gotta love the silver lining!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Wonderful Weekend

This weekend was exactly how weekends should be.

Friday evening I packed up some supplies and went scrapbooking at Terri's. Most of the time I prefer to work in the comfort of my own home but sometimes you just need to tap into the energy of having other scrapbookers around. I'm slowly working my way through my Philadelphia album and I was stuck. Terri inspired me on a page and now it's "good enough" and I'm able to move on. That is a great feeling.

On the way home I took advantage of the fact that the grocery store is open until midnight and I got my shopping done. It made for a late night but I was so glad to not have to worry about it on Saturday (and to have milk for my coffee in the morning!)

Saturday I got up and went down to the Farmers' Market. They were having a western theme so everyone was decked out in cowboy duds and all the booths were decorated. They also had a local group doing (really good!) Johnny Cash covers and the Rod and Gun Club did "shoot out" demonstrations. A bit cheesy but super fun. My brother Robert called during one of the acts and I told him what was going on. His answer? "You're such a tourist!" I informed him that I was only three blocks from home so it didn't really qualify but, if it did, what's wrong with that?

From the market I made my way up to the mall where I stopped in at NR to visit my old co-workers. It was nice to catch up with them briefly but I sure don't miss being there, especially on a sunny Saturday.

Next stop was my friend Leah's where we held a surprise birthday party for her. She just had her third baby so her husband convinced her to stay upstairs while we all gathered in her front room. When she came down, we yelled surprise. Of course she promptly started crying but it was good tears :) I stayed there for a few hours and got my fill of babies. There were three under three months!

Sunday after church Mom, Dad and I went to Swiss Chalet for lunch with a bunch of other people. For Father's Day I gave dad an Imax video called "Cosmic Voyage". We saw it as a family *years* ago and Mom and I have been wanting to buy it for Dad ever since because he enjoyed it so much. He was really, really excited to get that It's always nice when you find a winning gift.

As I mentioned in my previous post, Dad and Aaron came over and helped me move furniture and then Mom and Dad stayed for coffee (Aaron left to go to a friends house).

The weekend wasn't anything spectacular but it was a good pace and wonderful. Just like a weekend should be.

Now, if I can just keep my head above water with all the things I have planned for the week, we'll be doing well!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Heidi's Hole

It's official. I have a craft room/ office/ junk room/ happy place now. It's a mess but the bones of it are there and everything that will stay in that room is there in boxes. Now I just have to set it up, arrange it and clean it up so it's functional. I did sit down yesterday and do some scrapbooking though. Even in the middle of the mess. It's a super functional room and I know I'm going to love it!

Pictures to follow when it's presentable and you can tell what is what :)

Friday, June 13, 2008

My Decision Making Process

As I get older (you know, because I'm SO old :P) I recognize that I have a pretty standard decision making process. When I'm given two options I think it over for myself, get as MUCH input from others as possible, mull on it for a day or two (or 60) and then make my decision. This is mostly for big decisions but I do it for smaller ones too. Generally I just need TIME to get used to a new concept.

The latest item that I've been gathering input on is the debate of roommate or no roommate (and BTW, I'd say "housemate but I don't HAVE a house so roommate it will be).

I won't go into detail because it's long and boring but suffice to say, after lots of input, I'm leaning towards no roommate and I'm hoping to take advantage of that decision either this weekend or early next week. I'll keep you posted.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

The Other Side of the Table

Hello poor neglected blog. It's been almost a week since I blogged anything sorry :( So, what have I been up to? Well, this week it's been interviews. Not for me, I've been the one DOING the interviews! It's been an interesting experience. Late last week we got notice that our part time receptionist is going back to school. My boss has been out of town all week but, in the interest of expediency, in her absence, she had my co-worker and I do initial interviews. We utilized the service of a placement agency so that we wouldn't have to do advertising and wait for resumes to come in. Sharron (my co-worker) and I did five interviews this week. Four from the agency and one from word of mouth.

Being on the other side of the table in an interview is very interesting. A lot of "what not to do" stories from applicants being 45 minutes late(!) to not being dressed appropriately, to just things you really shouldn't say if you truly want the job.

The other interesting thing was that both Sharron and I had the same gut reaction to each of the applicants and we agreed on the final "ranking" system that we used to recommend applicants to our boss. My boss and I have second interviews booked for tomorrow and hopefully our gut reaction will be correct.

Interviewing is very time consuming though. I'll be glad when it's over. It's another skill to add to my own resume though...which...I think I'll go update. After seeing the ones I did, I have a few changes to make :)

Friday, June 06, 2008

My first un-supervised pie

I made pie last night. It turned out pretty good if I do say so myself. I've made pie plenty of times before but this was my first time doing it ALL by myself without Mom there to superivise. I did have to go out and buy a rolling pin (do you know how much they cost?!?) but I made the crust according to Grandma M's recipe and I made the pumpkin filling according to Grandma B's recipe. The first one probably could have baked a bit longer. The crust on the second one burnt a bit. It still tasted good though and I'm happy to bring it to dance tomorrow as requested :)

I also made a turnover type thing with the leftover dough and some fruit mix my mom gave me. I'm eating that for breakfast. Yummy!

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Love is Never-ending

Births, marriages and deaths are arguably the biggest events in many people's lives. In the last three months many of my friends have experienced these milestones.

Three babies have been born to women in my church (and another is due in July).

Three people have passed away. All were older but it doesn't make it any easier. The latest was my dance partner's wife. I'll be going to the service on Friday.

I've been to two weddings so far and I have two more to go to.

I was listening to Brad Paisley's "Time Well Wasted" cd yesterday and I think the words from this song are so appropriate:

Love is Never-ending
Seasons come and seasons go
One day sun, the next day snow
Flowers die and flowers grow
But love is never-ending

You can't kill it with goodbye
It always finds a place to hide
Inside your heart for your whole life
Love is never-ending

(Chorus:)When the lights have all gone down
It'll still be hangin' 'round
Even when you think it's lost, it can still be found
When every memory has been made
And the pages start to fade
And every prayer you ever prayed is heaven bound
When you think the ride is over
You're back at the beginning
Love is never-ending

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Greatest Joy

This comment was posted on Lee's blog

What is your greatest joy about scrapbooking?

For me, it is organizing all my pictures, memrobilia, stories and memories on a page that can sit happily on my shelf. I am a packrat by birth (my mom and paternal grandmother are both horrible so I come by it naturally). Scrapbooking gives me a place to store all the bits I pick up every day and and it gives me permission to throw out anything that doesn't make it into my album. That is my greatest joy.

Monday, June 02, 2008

EAT! Vancouver

I have a bad habit of, when I've attended an event, waiting until I've uploaded the photos before blogging about it. Sometimes, like with this one, I upload the photos and find out that I didn't have half as many as I thought I did, or any really super good ones. Deb has a few from this event but I need to just blog this before it becomes *really* old news.

Saturday, May 24th I met Deb at her house in Vancouver and we took skytrain to BC Place where the sixth annual EAT! Vancouver, Everything Food and Cooking Festival was taking place. I had been once before, with Robert, in 2005 (before I started blogging) We had a blast and I've always wanted to get back. For various reasons, it didn't happen until now.

Deb was a perfect festival "partner". She's adventerous when it comes to food, she appreciates quality products and nifty gadgets and she's comfortable either working the show floor together or separate. The picture of her is when she was trying an oyster.

It's hard to capture the event in words. It's a delight for all the senses though. You get to taste a wide variety of food. Most of the booths have samples that they served up at no charge. Everything from chocolate and home made marshmellows to curries, smoked salmon, tomatoes, different friut juices and anti-oxidant drinks, sausage, chips, ice cream and everything in between. You can also buy food tickets and many of the local restaurants had booths set up where you could buy samples of their menu. The idea of course is to familiarize yourself with different places so that you go visit them later.

The smells are incredible. The curries had the strongest smells but as you'd walk down the aisles, something else would grab your nose and tempt you. It's wonderful :D

For the eyes, there is tons to see. Everything is vying for your attention. The monkey looking things left are completely made of chocolate!

The Food Network, Celebrity Stage has shows going on all day. On the left in this picture is Iron Chef, Rob Feenie. I didn't stay for very long but it's fun to hear what they have to say.

Deb did humour me by attending a seminar by the Canadian Dairy Foundation on CHEESE. We sampled seven different cheeses and learned about their properties and about pairing them with fruits, breads and wines.

There was a section dedicated specifically to pet food and while Deb visited the vendors there, I sampled some wines in the Tasting Pavilion.

Throughout the day you are collecting samples, literature and other bits from the different displays. When you first walk in they give you a bag with items in it (like the rice, tooth past and razors). This is a picture of all the "loot" I cam home with. I told Deb "it's better than Halloween!"

There is an admission fee for the event but if you get a chance to attend, I highly recommend it.
And the best part? I found out that in September they're holding EAT! Fraser Valley!!! I can't wait!