Tag Archives: Vancouver BC

Now That’s A Hot Chocolate


Explore BC : Part 2 : Vancouver

explore bc - vancouver bc roadtrip with the family
Explore BC : Part 1 : From Fernie to Surrey

As soon as we hit the road on Monday morning we were reminded of what it’s like to be in rush hour traffic jams in the city. Morning traffic in Fernie is waiting an extra 30 seconds at the stop sign before you can make a turn…not 15 minutes, Vancouver! It was our fault. We decided to go straight from Surrey to Vancouver Aquarium in Stanley Park in the day time. We discovered the best time to drive anywhere in Vancouver is before 7 am and after 8 pm. Anyways, Vancouver Aquarium was on our list because as soon as Phoenix found out we were going to the ocean she asked “Are we going see a penguin?” …. “Yes, you can.” I said, after I checked the aquarium’s website. I’m not a believer in holding animals in small, unfamiliar spaces but I do love seeing the faces on my kids when they get to see, up close, a sea turtle bigger than their sandbox, a sting ray glide through the water so elegantly and they even had monkeys eating bugs off each other. It’s hard not to want to show those things to your kids.

explore bc - vancouver aquarium - road trip explore bc - sea turtle at vancouver aquarium explore bc - first time in the ocean

Rod was not feeling so good (I think it’s because he hates cities) so we checked into our new home for 3 nights, which we booked through Airbnb. It’s a strange thing moving into a basement suite of a house in Vancouver. It might not sound strange but it felt strange. The whole experience ended up being really great. The owners of the house had two little kids with lots of toys in the backyard that our kids were free to enjoy as well. Sweet! The place was clean and we had everything we would need at a much cheaper cost. I would totally do it again but next time I would try to get a little closer to the downtown core. We were far too south to be able to just walk out the door and explore. That didn’t stop us from exploring, though.

explore bc - spanish banks beach vancouver bc - road trip

The kids and I got in the car, while Rod slept, and I showed them a great spot I used to go to. Spanish Banks. It’s a quieter beach and it was a week day morning, so we had the whole beach to ourselves. The kids ran around and we ate our snacks and played in the sand. It’s all they wanted to do. After Roman went down for a nap, Phoenix and I strolled W 4th Ave in Kitsilano for the perfect birthday gift for Roman. Later that day, Rod put a smile on his face, even though he was still not feeling great, and drove us all to North Burnaby…in afternoon rush hour traffic. It was hard keeping that smile on his face but we were going to see friends so as soon as we landed, a happier Rod returned. The kids weren’t too happy about getting back in the car either and many are we there yets were blurted out. A big part of putting Vancouver on our itinerary was so I could see my friends who I haven’t seen in so long. This meant a lot to me, seeing my old business partner and dear friend Albertine De Leon and her beautiful family…so thanks, Rod, Phoenix and Roman!

By Wednesday Rod was feeling a bit better, enough to get out of the basement suite and celebrate Roman turning 2. For Roman’s birthday we went to Granville Island. Our first stop was the Toy Market, of course. I don’t think Phoenix or Roman have ever seen so many toys in one place. They were in heaven. We bought a few things for the kids and then went upstairs to play in the Arcade. The best part about this arcade is that even our little guys, age 3 and almost 2, were able to play a few games. That’s pretty rare.

explore bc - granville island - market explore bc - granville island toy market - arcade

We tied a birthday balloon to their wrists and dragged them out so we could explore more than just the toy stores. Phoenix found a tree to climb by the market, she can always spot a good climbing tree, and after a quick bite we decided the kids should experience the Aquabus. Rod, Phoenix and Roman got a tour of False Creek and came back as happy as my dad on a golf course, while I ran around the market trying to find snacks for Roman’s beach birthday party that afternoon. It was a smart idea. Our time at Granville Island had to come to an end because naps needed to be taken. This glorious nap time gave me a few minutes on my own in the Dunbar-Southlands area for a nice cup of coffee and some window shopping and I also picked up a beautiful birthday cake for Roman. You can’t have a birthday without cake.

explore bc - butter bakery - vancouver bc

We picked Kits Beach as an easy to access place for his birthday celebration and we had such a great time. There were ominous clouds behind us the whole time but they never came near us the entire evening. With dirt in their mouth, shirts and diapers, we said our goodbyes to our friends who we miss so much and went home for one more night in Vancouver. Victoria was calling us.

explore bc - 2nd birthday cake for roman explore bc - roadtrip with the family - roman turns 2 visiting dear friends - dana oikawa

Part 3 : Victoria and The Island

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Airbnb in Fernie

airbnb fernie listings

As I mentioned recently, we are traveling to the coast this summer and, since we’re not camping, we needed to find a few places to sleep (most are with friends along the way) but one stop was giving me a little bit of grief. Vancouver. We know so many people there but no one has room for 2 adults and 2 kids…and then we found out about airbnb. It’s amazing. You can find all sorts of different types of living spaces, including staying on a sail boat, if you like that idea, and we did find a place for us to call home for a few nights at a reasonable price. Then, because I was curious, I wanted to see if there was anything in Fernie. There is! It’s a great alternative and if you’re coming to Fernie, you should give it a try.

Music Break – Hey Ocean

Hey Ocean Logo - At Northern Bar and Stage in Fernie BCHey Ocean in Fernie BC August 2nd, 2011
Hey Ocean
is playing in Fernie on August 2nd at The Northern and I thought this was worthy enough of a little Music Break action.  They’re a fun jazzy/poppy band from Vancouver and I’m pretty sure they’ve been here before but they’re coming back…they must have liked it here.

Here’s a music video for their song Fish. The lead singer, Ashleigh Ball, is wearing feather earrings in the music video…so she’ll mos def fit in in Fernie no probs.

An Ocean Called Brina, I Mean, Owen

An Ocean Called Owen in Vancouver BCAn Ocean Called Owen in Vancouver BC - Laura RemyAn Ocean Called Owen in Vancouver BC - Albertine and BenAn Ocean Called Owen in Vancouver BC - Brina and DwightAn Ocean Called Owen in Vancouver BC - Dana Oikawa and Laura RemyAn Ocean Called Owen in Vancouver BC - Bill and Helen SchenkAn Ocean Called Owen in Vancouver BC - Friends Fly InAn Ocean Called Owen in Vancouver BC - Vancouver Symphony Orchestra
And then they told me there’s no photography allowed. What?!

But the performance and story blew me and everyone else away. It was so special and beautiful and amazing and everyone should have been there with teary eyes like I was.

Music Break – 3 Inches Of Blood

3 inches of blood band in Fernie BC3 Inches of Blood Metal Band in Fernie BC

This one’s for my main man Rodney Brink. Today’s Music Break is with 3 Inches Of Blood “the funnest band you’ll ever see live.” said Rod. This large metal band will singing about Warlocks, Orcs, blood and other hilarious things at Bulldogs on October 9th – If there are still tickets, they are $15 in advance and $20 at the door. Myspace/3InchesOfBlood

Yeah Vacation!

It’s hard to believe we did as much as we did in one week. After going through my photos, there’s no wonder why I’m so tired from my vacation. Fernie to Invermere to Revelstoke to Vernon to Salmon Arm to Vancouver to Whistler, back to Vancouver, back to Whistler and then home to Fernie. phew! But it was a great great great trip. Here are some photos to prove I didn’t just stay home and ignore all my emails.

Yeha Biking - RoadtripFernie to Invermere BC - Bald EaglesRodney Brink and Ella playing in the sun in InvermereTrip to Whistler - Tunnels in the mountainsBig dog and Little dogWhistler Roadtrip - Views From The CarNew Hitch on New Subaru OutbackRoadtrip Across British ColumbiaDry Plants in KamloopsRod and Brina on a roadtrip across BCEnter Vancouver - Kranky CafeDana at Kranky Cafe in VancouverVancouver - Teenie and Vespa HelmetVancouver Baseball Game - Albertine CatcherTrip across BCRainforest near SquamishSquamish Bike TrailWhistler BC - Leroy BrownWhistler Condo - Dinner TableWhistler Patio ChairsWhistler Bike CollectionWhistler - Bike RepairsWhistler Park RestWhistler - Hot Tub PartyBottom of the Bike Trails in Whistler - Village