What a Wonderful Woooooorld…

5.12.2010 | 2 Comments

What a world we live in! In the past week I have had an email from my friend who is traveling in Chile, an email from my brother who is wandering around Nepal with his lovely girlfriend, and this morning I received a phone call from my pilot friend who was walking around Hong Kong between flights.

Ducklings happily invaded the Delta Hospice, a friend of mine found a nest of baby bunnies in her yard (thankfully before the dogs did!), and HER friend watched as a baby cow fell off the back of a truck at a stop light (he’s ok!).

You just never know what to expect from day to day, do you? Thankfully, I am now fully prepared to capture whatever life throws my way – everyone, meet Gary.

That’s right, Gary is my new Handycam! As many of you already know, the Nikon D40 met with its sad fate while I was hiking up The Stawamus Chief trail. I knew I had to replace my camera, but wanted something different this time. I have a good point-and-shoot, so since Ali and I figured that we needed to do ‘video diaries’ while on Kili, a Handycam was the way to go.

Why is it named Gary? I have no idea. It just is.

So anyway, now I am going to spend the next 15 years trying to figure out how to use the thing. I am not what one would describe as ‘tech savvy’, and can become easily confused when I attempt to use my blender. And NO, my blender does not have a name. That would just be silly, now wouldn’t it? Sheesh… what kind of weirdo do you think I am!?

And so, with that fabulous news, I bring you ANOTHER Kili Gala Raffle prize that will be available to win at the June 5th Kili Gala… The Kili Gala is the fund raiser that Ali and I are throwing at the Ladner Community Centre on the evening of June 5th. We’re going to have drinks and dancing and a fab raffle draw in an attempt get closer to our goals of raising $10,000 for our respective charities (mine is The Delta Hospice Society, and Alison is raising funds and awareness for the Heart & Stroke Foundation). Tickets are only $20, and 100% of net proceeds will be going to charity, as Ali and I are paying for our Kili trip out of our own pocket. SO COME ON OUT!

Sami Christanson is an incredibly talented artist and designer. I met her a few years ago when I saw her work displayed at the Ladner Sunday Market. I loved her style and wondered if she would be able to paint a portrait of my dog Jake, who had recently passed away. She did. Incredibly well. So well in fact, that I cried and cried and cried when I saw the painting for the first time. She captured him perfectly. And so the next year I asked her to paint a portrait of Luna… AMAZING. Now, keep in mind, Sami is only 21 years old. Can you believe that?! All that talent stuffed into such a young person. She’s just going to get better and better…

Aside from being talented and just totally awesome, Sami is also very generous. She has donated TWO paintings to the Kili Gala Raffle Draw! So, on June 5th, you have an opportunity to get an original Sami Christianson piece of artwork. Seriously… this chick is going places. I just know it. Your grandkids are going to sell her paintings to an art dealer in 20 years and make a bajillion dollars. Mark my words, Sami is going places…


Short attention Sp- oooooh… kittens!

5.10.2010 | 3 Comments

I’ve come to realize of late that I have a rather limited attention span. I’ll get these great ideas, stick with them for a week or so, then get really bored and walk away. I’m essentially a toddler in my spare time.

I’m going to move to the UK! YAY!

*looks up info, does research, has conference call with potential employer in Wales, gets everything ready to go*


I’m going to take martial arts! YAY!

*Researches which discipline I’d like to practice, scouts out the nearest facility, pays for a month’s worth of classes, attends two weeks of said class*


I’m going to take up oil painting! YAY!

*Buys paints, buys canvas, buys brushes, buys small easel, paints 127 paintings in 3 days*


So, there it is. I’ll admit it – I’m flaky. I get an idea, try it out, then ditch it. It’s like having one-night-stands, but with leisure activities. “Don’t worry baby, I’ll call… you know I respect you…”

But then here’s the thing: I CAN’T DITCH KILI! (Not that I want to!) It’s just that… well… I’ve always had to have an ‘escape route’, you know? For example, I have to drive to parties by myself so that I can leave when I want to. I have to be able to get out of any situation at any time, or I feel trapped and anxious. Sometimes I get freaked out at the start of yoga class because I know once that door is locked, I’m in there for that hour and a half, no matter what!  But this Kili thing – I can’t shake it! There’s no escape. There’s no leaving early. There’s no subbing in some other poor sap to climb for me. It’s all ME.

I get on the plane

I get to the mountain.

I summit.

It scares the living daylights out of me. There’s no escape.

You know, I should probably stop reading Papillon right about now. I have *got* to stop reading non-fiction!

Anyway,  let me take a moment to divert my attention and reveal the next Kili Gala Raffle Prize that will be available to win on June 5th at the big ‘ol fund raiser I’m doing for the Delta Hospice Society…

Ahhhhhhhh, perfection. What other name have thee? Oh sweet, sweet perfection, I know you thus: La Belle Auberge. Yes, that’s right, Bruno and Tobias have donated a $50 gift certificate to the best restaurant in the entire universe*.

So, if you’ve got a special occasion coming up, or if you just want to treat yourself and/or a loved one to a wonderful evening out, drop your raffle tickets in for the gift certificate to La Belle Auberge. I promise I won’t touch them. I won’t throw your raffle tickets away and keep only mine in the box… maybe… ok, ok, I’ll try.

…sort of.

*Yes, it IS the best restaurant in the entire universe.


My Knees are My Friends

5.09.2010 | 1 Comment

First and foremost: HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!!  xo

I love you, mom!


Yesterday I had a scary thing happen. No, it wasn’t when I updated my iTunes and it promptly deleted my entire music library, although that too was scary. Although that was pretty gut-dropping-‘NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!‘-type scary, though…

Yesterday I was walking the dogs in the park, and having a fun ol’ time, when out of nowhere an uber-exctited dog came running up to play. This is not a problem, as the more the merrier, really. As the dogs were all running around in circles and acting like idiots (as dogs do so very, very well), the new uber-excited dog wasn’t looking where he was going, and ran right into me. He was going at top dog-speed and slammed right into my knees.

Now unfortunately for me, I wasn’t paying attention, and to make things worse, he hit me from the FRONT. My knees hyper-extended BACKWARD, and I fell to the ground with a stomach-lurching, nausea-inducing pain.

I was fine after a few minutes, but it got me thinking: what if I hurt myself before I get to even GO to Kilimanjaro? What if I’m hiking and I trip and sprain an ankle? What if I fall into some random cactus garden, and get infections from the bajillion little pokey-spikey things that jab into me? What if my toes explode off for no apparent reason? These are all valid concerns!

The really freaky thing is that I haven’t ever broken any major bone in my body, and I fear that the Law of Averages is catching up. I’m going to have to be very careful. Maybe I can make a deal with The Gods of Unbroken Bones…

Dear handsome, intelligent, all-knowing, fantastic Gods who are really, really cool,

Please don’t let me hurt myself before I go to Africa. I have a mountain to climb, and it would really suck if I hurt myself before I went. You can have me fall down a flight of stairs as soon as I get home in September if you like, just please, PLEASE let me make it to Kilimanjaro unscathed.

Thank you,


Hope that works.

And now, for the Kili Gala Raffle Prize reveal of the day: In honour of Mother’s Day, I happily tell you about this prize that is available to be won at the June 5th Kili Gala fundraiser for Delta Hospice*.

Bobs & Lolo are a super cute singing/dancing duo ‘who are dedicated to connecting kids to the natural world with music, movement and make-believe. Sharing musical stories that engage, inspire and educate, they teach kids to care about themselves, their neighbours and the planet’. They have graciously donated a wonderful DVD and CD set to the Kili Gala, and we have taken the opportunity to pair it with a $40 gift certificate to Buttercups Childrens’ Boutique in Ladner. This is a GREAT raffle prize for the mom who needs to get out and go shopping after getting a kids’ song stuck in her head at breakfast.

Best of luck at the Kili Gala Raffle Draw, and remember: I love you…

*To purchase tickets to the Kili Gala, just contact me through this site or go see Michael at Open Space Yoga, or Wade at Evolutions Hair Design!


Rly? Ya Rly!

5.08.2010 | 2 Comments

As a way to relax after a long week, I booked myself an appointment for a massage with Laura at Better Still Day Spa. Best. Idea. EVER. I am SO relaxed. Laura really is fantastic… I can’t wait to go back. I need a pedicure in the worst way.

Ali and I received confirmation yesterday from our Professional Mountain guide that he’s on board to drag our butts up Kili. Ok, maybe he didn’t say that exactly. However, he *did* tell us to go hike The Chief and The Grouse Grind more often. I think he’s spying on us somehow. Thankfully he didn’t mention anything about our post-hike snacks.


It’s ok Mr. Kili Guide, we’re going to be in GREAT shape when we get there, we promise!!


Speaking of being in shape, how about I reveal yet another raffle draw prize that will be available at The Kili Gala on June 5th?

Quick recap for those of you just joining us: Kili Gala on June 5th at the Ladner Community Centre (where the evil wonderful outdoor pool is) – a fundraiser benefiting the Delta Hospice Society and the Heart & Stroke Foundation. Tickets are $20 and can be purchased by contacting me through this site, or you can go to Open Space Yoga or Evolutions Hair Salon and purchase them there (cash or cheque only, please)… DJ, dancing, snacks, drinks, entertainment and a FABTASTICOUS raffle draw!!  100% of net proceeds go to charity, so come on out and have a great time for a great cause!

Ok… here we go…

The Kili Gala raffle draw will have three gift certificates from my FRIKKEN RAD personal trainer Cara Thien!


Yah, you heard me… THREE.



No, really?


Cara is a dedicated, passionate and skilled trainer who knows exactly how to get you looking your best. She has her own in-home studio in Tsawwassen where she holds group training classes, does one-to-one personal training, and she also creates meal plans, on request, for clients that want to look and feel their best. She’s the greatest. I mean it.

The gift certificates that she’s donating are worth over $300, and even if you DID have to pay that amount, it’s totally worth it. But hey, lucky for you, these prizes can be yours if your $2 raffle ticket gets pulled at the Kili Gala.

You want to get in shape for the summer?  This is your chance. Come to the Kili Gala on June 5th, and throw some raffle tickets into the draw for this really, really, really… ummmm… really, really smashtastic prize.


(I totally love this photo of Cara, don’t you??)


Here’s the Rub…

5.07.2010 | 0 Comments

Last night I went to my first ‘Slow Flow’ yoga class at Open Space. I usually practice the more physically demanding Hatha Yoga, but my hips just can’t take it. Michael suggested Slow Flow instead, and man, was it great.

Speaking of hips, Michael suggesting stuff, and greatness…

I had my first appointment with Physio Flo yesterday morning! Florence MacDonald-Bain of Tsawwassen Sports and Orthopedic Physiotherapy (on 12th Ave) is pretty much the raddest physiotherapist on the entire planet. I think. I mean, I haven’t been to Uruguay, so maybe there’s someone there that’s better, but I doubt it. She has some sort of freaky physiointuition thing going on, and  can somehow figure out exactly where to jab her thumb, or apply pressure. Next time I go there, I’m going to bring her a cape. She totally deserves one – she’s the Super Hero of the Physiotherapy World. I’m seeing her next week, and I’m looking forward to it… that’s weird, isn’t it?


Last night at yoga, a lovely woman came running up to me and said, “I saw your friend today!!”

Now normally I would be confused as to who she was talking about, but given that I have had someone else say THE EXACT SAME THING to me this week, I knew who she was talking about: one of my fabulous sponsors – Laura at Better Still Day Spa.

Turns out that people are flocking to Laura’s Day Spa in Ladner, and are leaving there feeling pretty darn fantastic. I love to hear that! I’m a big proponent of people feeling relaxed and less stressed, and I really do think Laura has the best place going for that. AND in all of Laura’s awesomeness, she has made a commitment to donate all of her tips for the month of May to the Delta Hospice Society! THANK YOU, LAURA!!

This woman who approached me at yoga last night has been going through some stressful times of late, and a lot of that is related to one of her family members being diagnosed with a life-threatening illness. Of course I suggested she go to Hospice, but she was way ahead of me! She was already planning on going there. It’s wonderful to be able to have somewhere to refer people to when they are going through some of the most difficult times in their lives. Hospice just has so much to offer, from counseling to literature, from relaxation groups to a wonderful library… AND they have bunnies!

So, in honour of the lovely woman I met at yoga last night, I will now reveal the next Raffle Prize that will be available to win at the Kili Gala on June 5th – this is going to be a very, VERY cool fundraiser, you know. 100% of net proceeds are going to charity, so feel secure in the knowledge that your money is going to a very good cause. Contact me for tickets!

The next Raffle Prize is yet ANOTHER that I want to win. But since I can’t, I’m leaving it up to you to take this one home: Laura at Better Still Day Spa has donated A YEAR’S WORTH of thirty-minute massages. Oh yes, you read that right. 12 massages are on the table (pun totally intended) at the Kili Gala courtesy of the best massage artist I know. This is a prize worth nearly $500… and Laura DONATED it! Seriously, NOW can you see why I’ve been so touched (pun sort of intended) by the generosity of the people in this community??

So, if YOU want to win a year’s worth of massages, I highly recommend making your way to the Kili Gala on June 5th. Donate to charity, and get massages. Not a bad deal, eh?



Pain for Me, Prizes for You

5.06.2010 | 2 Comments

The good thing about this blog is that I’m not expected to write about last night’s hockey game.  So… I won’t.

The other day Michael was chatting with me about his new physiotherapist. He said that she was really quite an incredible body worker, and perhaps maybe she could be of assistance to me regarding my wonky hips. He told me that she’s got a mondo waitlist, so I should call ASAP to at least get my name in. I’ll probably be waiting a very long time to see her, but that’s ok – at least I’ll get in at some point, right?

So this morning I have an appointment with Michael’s physiotherapist…

And now I bring you Kili Gala Raffle Prize #2…  To recap, I am going to reveal one Kili Gala Raffle Prize a day until the actual Kili Gala on June 5th. The Kili Gala, of coyrse, is the mondo fundraising party that we’re throwing to benefit the Delta Hospice Society. Want tickets? Drop me a line at, or simply contact me through this site…

Kaymaran Adenture Tours is owned and operated by a very great dog named Brodie. He is instrumental in keeping our harbour safe from the evil sticks that float in the river. He bravely jumps in the water and soundly defeats those floating menaces with bravery and skill. And sharp teeth.

I spoke with Brodie about my upcoming Kili Gala fundraiser, and he was keen to help. Right away he told me to contact his best friend Tony, who does all the things at Kaymaran that require the use of an opposable thumb.

Brodie had Tony write out a gift certificate for a free Guided Kayak Tour. I mean seriously – isn’t that totally AWESOME!? Yah, I KNOW! Totally awesome. I wasn’t expecting Brodie to be so generous, but I am so thrilled that he so readily gave such support. GOOD DOG!

So, when you win this Raffle Prize at the Kili Gala on June 5th, make sure you bring a little something with you to thank Brodie, ok? OK!


Brick by Brick

5.05.2010 | 2 Comments

Last night at yoga, it was strongly reinforced that I have limited flexibility.

Ok, I’ll be honest. I am just not flexible.

At all.

But that’s ok – I can do other things! I can probably hold Boat Pose for an hour. That’s gotta’ count for something, right? And I’m sure I can think of a situation where that particular talent could come in very handy. Pfffttt… flexibility. Who needs it!? Not like THAT would ever come in handy or anything.

Aaaaaaaanyway, I’ll just keep going back to yoga and doing my best. Practice is what it’s all about, right? Right!

SO! Today we are ONE MONTH AWAY from The Kili Gala!! Woooo hoooooooooo! Got your tickets yet? Drop me a line, and I’ll bring them, to you – only $20 a ticket, so bring some friends and come on out to help raise some dough for the Delta Hospice Society!

As you may very well know, The Kili Gala is featuring a really fab raffle draw with some great prizes to be won. I have decided that starting today, I will let you in on the secret of ONE raffle prize each day until the Gala on June 5th. That way you can see some of what’s available to be snagged at the Kili Gala. Good idea? I thought so! Heeeeeeeeeeeeeere we go!

I thought I’d open with a doozy. The first raffle prize I want to tell you about comes from my favourite restaurant in Vancouver – The Twisted Fork. This is a FABULOUS French bistro with amazing food, but without the pretension. It is owned and operated by three very gifted friends of mine, and I always recommend that people go see them at Twisted Fork for brunch, dinner, or just drinks.

The brunch, by the way…. SUPERB.

Oh! And one of my favourite things? Corey (the uber skilled –and damn cute– chef) creates a Sunday Night Supper for the end of each week. He creates a home-made meal for all of us who have no special home to go to on Sunday nights, for that all important supper. SUCH a great idea. Lasagna, meatloaf, pork chops… just those fabulous comfort foods, served with a salad, dessert, and a beer/wine. Love that idea!

ANYWAY… Twisted Fork has graciously donated a $100 GIFT CERTIFICATE to the Kili Gala Raffle Draw.

Seriously. $100 to one of the best restaurants in the City. They have a killer wine and beer selection too, so this could be a really, really great night out. Or maybe it could be a brunch for a whole handful of friends. It’s up to you!

Come on out to The Kili Gala, and grab some raffle tickets (a scant $2 each!), and enter to win the Twisted Fork gift certificate. This is one of the ones that *I* want to win, but since I can’t – I’ll wish YOU the best of luck!

…lucky jerk. Hooray for you!


Peace, Love, Eternal Grooviness…

5.02.2010 | 3 Comments

Yesterday Ali and I went to Open Space Yoga‘s 5year Anniversary shindig. Michael had graciously invited us to go and sell tickets to the Kili Gala, and we happily took him up on the offer. When I showed up, Michael already had a little Kili station waiting for me

Awesome, huh!? I borrowed a few of my mom’s rhinos from her collection to add a little African flair, but Michael did all the hard work, and set up a place where I could easily chat with people and accept donations without awkwardness. Thanks Michael!  xo

Open Space Yoga is truly a well-loved place, as is easily evidenced by this photo I took of the studio a mere 15 minutes after the doors were opened.

Lots of people came to help celebrate, and Michael threw a fabulous party for us all. There was a woman doing reflexology, a fantastic array of incredible food by Jini’s Ethnic Gourmet, and there were art pieces hanging on the wall from talented local painters. Oh! And there was a really talented young woman there doing henna!

There were also a couple of very talented guitarists providing background music, and we were all treated to a fabulous belly dancing performance by Fanny, who also teaches belly dance classes at Open Space Yoga! The music snaked its way around the room, and Fanny confidently and seductively showed us her moves…

How does she MOVE like that!? While watching her, I got into a discussion with a couple of women about body image, and how western culture values all the wrong things, making women push themselves to illness trying to be like the ‘ideal’ woman we see on magazine covers. And even if women DO finally achieve that look, are they happy? No. There’s no confidence, no assurance, no peace. Watching Fanny dance was a great way to remind myself to dance to the music, and not to the image. Hey Ali, Lil’ Miss Fat Girl… what do YOU think of Fanny’s performance?

That’s what I thought.

By the way, that little red cup that Ali is holding – this is what’s in it:

I had about 14 cups of it.

Which may not have been a good idea…

…wait. I’m climbing a mountain?! That doesn’t seem like a good idea at all!

But all is well. I snarfed down a few of the decadent desserts that Jini had brought, and the sugar went right to my brain and destroyed that wretched clarity. Thanks sugar!

All in all, it was a lovely afternoon. I spoke with a lot of interesting people, and met with more of the beautiful generosity that this community shares. I had people coming up and giving me whatever spare change they could find at the bottom of their purses and pockets. Every single donation makes a difference, and I can happily, PROUDLY say that $3296 has been raised for The Delta Hospice Society to date. YOU ROCK!! Thank you so much.

And even though I am continually worried about how the Kili Gala will turn out, and I constantly fret over making sure that we get all 250 people through the door, after a day like yesterday, I’m reminded of something that I so often forget to do…

I think I need to take more time to focus on my breathing. It will probably be very beneficial when I’m climbing, considering that I’ll HAVE TO focus on my breathing when I’m climbing. Practice makes perfect, right? There’s something to this whole ‘breathing’ thing. It gives you life, yes. But more importantly, it helps you live. Right eternally-smiling-and-forever-peaceful Buddha?


Happy 5th Anniversary to Michael and to Open Space Yoga – it’s a joy to have you here.


Party Karma!

4.10.2010 | 1 Comment

Ahhhhh, the Kili Gala. Although a wonderful idea, and one that I believe will help to raise a great deal of money for the Delta Hospice Society, it is totally stressing me out.

I am not a party planner. I know some people who are incredible at event planning, and sadly, I am not one of those people. In all honesty, I’d rather climb a mountain than plan an event.

…oh. Right. I *am* climbing a mountain.


As stressful as I am finding the planning for the Kili Gala, I have been overwhelmed by the support of our community. As you may already know, The Kili Gala will have a raffle draw with a whole bunch of really great prizes. Most of the prizes come from local businesses, or from local business owners who have their businesses in another community. The donor list is incredible! Seriously, have a look!

Gift certificates, baskets of goods, golf passes, dinner at fantastic restaurants… it’s all so very, very awesome. And the best part? Raffle tickets are going to be cheap!  My plan was for the raffle to be a big draw, and so far, it’s working out pretty well, I must say!

SO… I think you and your friends have a date for JUNE 5th! Come to the Ladner Community Centre at 7pm and partake of the Kili Gala – have some fun knowing that all your donations are going to a worthy cause. It’s Party Karma!

You can email me at (or just click the ‘contact’ tab) and request tickets. I’ll even hand-deliver them if you live in South Delta!

You can also purchase tickets in person at Open Space Yoga and Evolutions Hair Design in Ladner. Michael and Wade have graciously offered to sell tickets for me, and, well…  I think they’re wonderful for doing so.

Can’t wait to see you on June 5th – considering what we have planned (and what we’re planning on wearing), you’re won’t want to miss this…

*If you would like to donate an item for the Kili Gala Raffle, please send me an email!*


Mission Accomplished!

3.26.2010 | 0 Comments

Hey, remember this?:

My goal for this week: Secure a space and a date for the Kili Gala.


The Kili Gala will be held at the Ladner Community Centre, and the city of Delta is generously allowing me to use the space for an incredibly reduced non-profit rate. They’re also sending me paperwork to apply for a grant to get even that cost reduced to NOTHING. Cross your fingers that there’s grant money left to be had!

The Kili Gala will be happening on Saturday, June 5th, starting at 7pm, and going until about midnight.

There will be door prizes, raffle draws, 50/50 tickets, dancing, drinks, a wee bit o’ food, and some fabulous entertainment.

Tickets are only $20 each, and ALL PROCEEDS go to The Delta Hospice and the Heart and Stroke Foundation. A dear friend of mine is climbing Kili with me, and she is doing it to raise money for the H&S Foundation, so we decided to split the proceeds from this event right down the middle. There will be donation boxes inside the venue if you would like to make a donation specifically to one of those two charities.

We all know that this is a night to make as much money as possible for charity, so come and enjoy yourself, knowing also that you’re doing a very, very wonderful thing. Bring your loonies and your twoonies for raffle tickets and the 50/50 draw!

Tickets will be available soon, and can be purchased at Open Space Yoga in Ladner, or by simply emailing me.

We’ve got a LOT of space in that ol’ Community Centre, so let’s fill it with as many people as we can – tell your friends, tell your family, tell your neighbours, co-workers, hairdressers, massage therapists – tell everyone!

We would love to see you there!