Thursday, April 24, 2008

Vancouver Island pictures.

Well, I said I was going to look for pictures of Vancouver Island that would do it justice and I found some!! Obviously I can not take credit for these, they were done by a photographer from Nanaimo here on the Island, but he gave me permission to post them. He has great shots from various points around the globe. He has graciously allowed me to share with you all and even showed me an online tutorial so I can learn how to take shots like this. It won't be for a while because I have to upgrade my camera, which ain't gonna happen until I have a job. HA!

I hope you enjoy these as much as I do and feel free to visit his blog and send him your comments.

Thanks for tuning in...


Granville Island Market, Vancouver

Aquabus, Vancouver

Vancouver at Midnight

Cowichan Bay Marina, Vancouver Island

Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island

Mt. Prevost, near Duncan, Vancouver Island

Sunset over Mt. Prevost

Lions Gate Bridge from Stanley Park, Vancouver

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Earth Day 2008

OK, it's Earth Day and I want to know what all of you are doing about it. It doesn't have to be some grand gesture, just learning something new and applying it to your daily life would suffice. I've been studying up on how to 'clean up' our home, as in removing the toxins that we use to help clean and keep things tidy. I am finding loads of information about natural products that get the job done just as well, or better, than chemicals we've become accustomed to. As an example I am trying out a 90% Water/10% Vinegar solution as a way to rid our yard of unsightly weeds. I'll let you know how that progresses. In the meantime I have listed below some information I garnered from a local magazine called Granville. Read it, check you cleaning cupboards and make your life, and the planet, better.

How many of these chemicals are around YOUR house??

* Used as a solvent in carpet cleaners and specialty cleaners, it can be inhaled or absorbed through the skin and may cause blood disorders, as well as liver and kidney damage, and may also cause reproductive damage on long-term exposure.

Ethoxylated nonyl phenols (NPEs)
* A group of endocrine-disrupting chemicals still used in cleaning products, even though Environment Canada has declared them toxic under the Canadian Environmental Act. Known as 'gender benders', nonyl phenols can induce female charicteristics in male fish, for example.

Methylene chloride
* Listed as a possible human carcinogen by the International Agency for Research on Cancer, methylene chloride, or products containing it, are used as paint stripper. There are no warning label requirements in Canada for methylene chloride, which is sold in hardware and home improvement outlets.

* Either Naphthalene, or another chemical called paradichlorobenzene, is used in mothballs and moth crystals. Naphthalene is listed by California's Office of Environmental Health Hazards Assessment as a substance "known to cause cancer", while paradichlorobenzene is listed by the International Agency for Research on Cancer as a possible human carcinogen.

* Found in common powdered household abrasive cleaners, Silica is made from finely ground quartz. It is carcinogenic when it occurs as a fine breathable dust.

* Used as a solvent in numerous products, including paints, Toulene is a potent reproductive toxin. Toulene is listed by California's Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment as a reproductive toxin that may cause harm to the develoring fetus. Pregnant women should certainly not use products containing Toulene.

Trisodium nitrilotriacetate (NTA)
* Used as a builder in laundry detergents, NTA is listed as a possible human carcinogen by the International Agency for Research on Cancer. It also has an adverse environmental impact because it can impede the elimination metals in wastewater treatment plants.

Source: Labour Environment Alliance Society (

Monday, April 14, 2008

Upper Vezzano, Italy.

Vezzano Alley (Late Afternoon)

Upper Vezzano - Sanctuary of  Nostra Signora del Soccorso (Morning)

These are from an online photographer friend of mine, Paolo in Italy. He takes some amazing shots and I am of the mind to post some from time to time. I'll look for someone with pictures of British Columbia that are just as gorgeous. Enjoy!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Reflection of the day.

So, I had a fairly good day today. Dixon is in Kelowna for three days so I am bonding with the animals. I found a job online that I applied for, fingers crossed.

At 9pm I was sitting in the living room, cat asleep on my lap and the dog sprawled out on the floor, the smooth jazz station gently wafting from the tele as I played solitaire on my i-Pod. Suddenly a song came on that grabbed me by the ears and wouldn't let go - Angel Eyes by KD Lang. Gorgeous voice, superb orchestration, sultry saxophone and elegant strings. When it was over I sprung to the computer and summoned i-Tunes for a search. There she was with that song, part of a tribute album to Ella Fitzgerald. Sixteen songs and a bonus booklet for only $9.99. Beside Ms. Lang there is Chaka Kahn, Diana Krall, Gladys Knight, Etta James, Linda Rondstatd, Michael Buble, Natalie Cole and Queen Latifah! Most are favorites of mine (I swear there is a black woman in me somewhere!!). I simply could not pass up this selection and am now listening to these wonderful voices. Ain't life grand!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Can you get THIS in the US??

Well, I found my dream car du jour - the 1991 Nissan Figaro. These were made in VERY limited numbers, less than 20,000, for the Japanese market only. I found a company in Vancouver that imports them and sells them for $12-13,000. What a bargain!!

Here are some details:

The Figaro was introduced at the 1989 Tokyo Motor Show under the slogan "Back to the Future". It was built by a Nissan special projects group called Pike Factory, who also produced other niche automobiles such as the Be-1, Pao and S-Cargo. Only four colours were available: Topaz Mist, Emerald Green, Pale Aqua and Lapis Grey. The least popular was Topaz Mist, which now has become the most sought-after version.

The Figaro was equipped with leather seats, air conditioning, CD player and a open roof. It was designed by Shoji Takahashi, who won a design competition with the car.

The engine was Nissan's MA10ET, a turbocharged 1.0 L (987 cc) I4.

Only 8,000 were originally available with an additional 12,000 added to production numbers to meet demand.

Now I really have to get a job so I can get one of these! Maybe it's mid-life crisis but I am smitten for SURE!