Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Apartment photoshoot preview

My friends and fam have all been asking to see my new pad in Jasper, so I decided, with the help of Ian's camera gear, knowledge and mad skills, that I would have a little fun with the photos. So instead of just taking some straight pics of our apartment, we're giving you a taste of our home life.
Well, sort of anyway.

Here's a shot to peak your interest. Keep your eyes peeled for more in the very near future.

So this is our living room. The puzzle is all Ian. I'm forbidden to place even one piece. The ball of wool is all mine. Although, it appears Ian's allowed to touch that... or throw it.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Unicorns in Jasper

As I was driving away from the scene of a fire at Jasper Park Lodge today, I saw a herd of elk digging through the snow to find something to eat. The sight made me think of this YouTube video, where a tourist thinks he is seeing a unicorn, which is actually an elk.
"I thought unicorn was so extinct, but unicorn live in Banff."
So funny, and so worth watching, even if you've seen it a million times.

Anyway, here are a few photos of the "unicorns" I saw today.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Starting to look like Christmas


The snow is out of control in Jasper. I haven't seen this much since I was a kid living on Vancouver Island. The only difference is, in my hometown, it would rain immediately after the snow storm, so the snow would turn to disgusting slush. Thankfully that's not the case here. And it has me in the Christmas spirit, which means, it has me planning my vacation!

On Monday, thanks to my lovely sister, the planning got a lot easier. I received an invitation to spend Christmas with her, my brother-in-law, his family and my own. So, of course, I immediately RSVPed, which means I'm Kelowna-bound on Christmas eve!

This was my adorable invitation:

With the location secured, now it's time to kick the winter of DIY into high gear. I'm hoping to at least make 80 per cent of my gifts. So that means I'll be spending my evenings with a needle and thread, wool and a crochet hook or felt and a glue gun. Wish me luck!

Monday, November 21, 2011

A delicious weekend

It was a weekend of great flavour. On Friday, Ian and I made Mediterranean chicken with balsamic vinegar, tomato, red onion and feta cheese on top. Along side it, we served quinoa salad with corn, red onion, red pepper, leeks, carrots, lime juice and salt and pepper.
Then on Saturday we made fried chicken and waffles -- one of Ian's favourite meals. It was my first time trying it, and I have to say, although I was a little bit skeptical, in the end, chicken and waffles with syrup and ketchup is quite a delicious meal. Try it! You don't know what you're missing.

Aside from cooking delectable food, it was also a productive weekend. We went out for two hikes, one of which took us to the a gorgeous viewpoint where we posed for numerous photos, including this one:

Behind us is Pyramid Mountain. It was a gorgeous day for a hike with just a few clouds in the sky. It was a bit chilly at first (-20 C), but by the time we reached the halfway point, we were both sweaty and out of breath. It was quite the climb, but so worth it for the payoff of a gorgeous view.

The weekend didn't end there either. I also made some time for crafting. I even finished my first sock monkey! Because I was a wuss (until last night) and hadn't been brave enough to use my new sewing machine, I did all of the sewing by hand. It took me an evening to make (as opposed to a couple of hours), but I'm actually pretty happy with how it turned out.
What should I name him?
* Please ignore the fact that one leg is significantly wider than the other. It was my first try after all. *

To top off my tasty, nature-filled, crafty weekend, I went to Jasper's annual Christmas craft fair, which was totally amazing. There were a huge number of vendors with all kinds of goodies, both edible and non-edible. I ended up buying a pair of feather earrings, a felt change purse, a tortiere and homemade perogies. It was a pretty good haul.
We ate the perogies tonight and they were well worth the $5 for a dozen.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011


I have no new crafts to report on. I've had visitors from Yellowknife sleeping on my couch/futon for the last three nights, so I haven't had much time to do anything besides work and drink beers.
I did manage to accomplish one thing, though. I signed up for Pinterest and even started pinning.
I feel like that site is going to be a major time-suck. But what on the Internet isn't? Right?
Anyway, so far I have been pinning things that I want to craft and things that I would like in my home.
If you want to follow me, here I am!

Since I don't have much to share. I thought I'd take this opportunity to post a couple photos of my gorgeous new home.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

DIY: Autumn-inspired dresser

So I bought a heinous dresser when I first moved to Jasper, with the intention of refinishing it and I finally got around to it this weekend. I spent Saturday evening listening to Risk (an amazing podcast, that everyone should check out) and sanding the crap out of the thing with my first ever power tool -- a palm sander. I went through two packs of sandpaper, inhaled an unfortunate amount of dust (I'm still blowing brown, gritty snot) and found myself sufficiently exhausted by the time the job was done. Then Sunday, I spent the entire day priming and painting.

Here are the before and after photos:

The only thing I wish I could fix is the chunk missing from the corner of the orange drawer. I'll attempt to figure that out asap. All things considered, though, I'm pretty happy with the results.

And that wasn't even the only project I competed this weekend. I also made some cute fridge magnets.

The cloud I found on a blog called Happy Serendipity. It was a brooch, but I thought it would make a cute magnet. To make it, I used hot glue to affix one magnet to the back of the cloud and then another one on each strand of buttons, so it can hold numerous things at once.

The green and orange felt rose buds were on a blog called You Seriously Made That? But they were fish hook-style earrings. I also made some that will become stud earrings, but I thought they would also do well as colourful magnets.

So, that was my weekend. Oh yeah! I also went to see The Mahones Friday night. We even had the band over for a few drinks after the show. It was quite the evening. I didn't end up in bed until 5 a.m., while Ian and the band were up until at least 6:30 a.m. With that in mind, I'm pretty impressed with my accomplishments this weekend. I'd say it was a pretty solid start to the winter of DIY.

Canadian Girl

For the last two years I’ve thought my goal of reporting from every province and territory was pretty unique, but since arriving in Jasper, I’ve realized I’m just one of people many who want to see and experience everything Canada has to offer.
That couldn’t have been more evident than when I interviewed Bonnie Ste-Croix, a folk singer originally from Quebec, but now living in Halifax.
Ste-Croix, like me, has lived all over the country. Before Halifax she was in Vancouver and before Vancouver in Banff, and so on.
When she was planning to relocate to Halifax from Vancouver a year and a half ago, she started thinking about the number of times she’s driven across our great country. With those thoughts in her mind, she had a revelation, “It’s like all of Canada is my hometown.”
And with that epiphany came an idea. Ste-Croix set out to write and record an album that would represent her many hometowns, something she successfully completed and released in September.
Canadian Girl has one song for each province and territory and each of those songs has at least one guest artist from the corresponding province or territory. 
Guests include, Natalie MacMaster (Nova Scotia), ShariUlrich (British Columbia), Stephen Fearing (Ontario), Leela Gilday (Northwest Territories) and Dominique Dupuis (New Brunswick).
Now all of that is pretty cool, but it gets cooler. Ste-Croix went to each province and territory to record the song associated with it. She travelled 7,849 kilometres by car and she took 12 flights, taking her from coast to coast to coast.
This woman is my hero. If I could sing or play an instrument, Canadian Girl would be my dream project.
But since I have no musical talent whatsoever, I guess I’ll just have to stick with my own goal and make my way around Canada as a reporter. The upside of doing it my way is I have more time to really immerse myself into the cultures and traditions of my new hometown.
I just hope that by the time I’m finished my journey, I’m still young enough to remember where I began.