Feel-good Flowers

Flowers have an immediate positive effect on our mood.  How can you not smile after receiving a fresh bouquet?  Participants in studies have reported feeling less depressed and anxious with a higher sense of enjoyment after receiving flowers.

I notice that my mood picks up when I admire fresh flowers or stop to smell the flowers on trees such as lilacs.  That is why I signed up to receive a farm fresh bouquet delivered to my door starting next week from a local company called Bear’s Blooms.

Which brings me to this question…

The Victoria from Bear’s Blooms Website. Roses, Alstroemeria, Tulips and Solidago.

If you could choose to be any flower, what would you be?

I think a Sunflower.  If not, then a Daffodil.

Sunflowers symbolize adoration, loyalty and longevity. Much of the meaning of sunflowers stems from its namesake, the sun itself.

The iris (Iris xiphium) symbolizes hope, cherished friendship and valor and is the inspiration for the fleur-de-lis. A gift of iris bulbs brings hope with each returning spring.

Daffodils: These bright blooms have been named the number one flower for enhancing people’s moods. Yellow is a color that is often associated with happiness, so it comes as little surprise that a vase brimming with beautiful daffodils will instantly

from the website:   bearsblooms.com    Use code DEBBIE 5088 to get $15 off your first order.

perk up your day!

Happy Weekend Ahead.

 

SHINE ON!

SuperGoop! Sunscreen

The forecast calls for Sunny Days aheadat some point in the very near future.  So we need to be prepared to protect our skin.

Photo: D. King

It’s confusing when you consider all the various products out there… but let me simplify choices for you by sharing my new favourite sunscreens.

All by SuperGoop!

Something light that won’t interfere with makeup application and also works as a primer, something for when you’re being more active and something for a subtle glow.

Supergoop! debuted in 2007, with its Everyday SPF 50, and almost immediately won the American Academy of Dermatology’s Gold Triangle Award for Sun Safety Education. Since then, the company has expanded into a range of sunscreens for children and adults, and even recently launched eye shadows containing SPF.

Holly Thaggard, Founder and CEO of Supergoop, is based in San Antonio, Texas, and is considered the Norma Rae of Sunscreen as she’s dedicated 12 years to skin cancer prevention.  Tennis Pro Maria Sharapova is a co-owner of this growing company.

Sunny, cloudy, stormy or clear…no matter the weather, all forecasts call for SPF!

I’m convinced you’re going to LOVE these choices.

Where to order:

https://supergoop.com/

Also sold at Sephora

May Days

What’s not to love about May

May brings promise of brighter days ahead, spring flowers, a few showers and a general lightness of being. Something we need right now is Optimism.

Here are a few things I love about MAY.

Sunday, May 2nd, was the first day of our local Kitsilano Farmers Market.  Shopping fresh and prepared local food products are always a feel-good source of groceries for me and many other locals.

Open May-October, this weekly market offers locally sourced produce, artisanal crafts & food trucks.

This cute little trailer is a food truck.

Odd Society is Makers of Fine Spirits. Now that’s the spirit!

 

 

 

And fortunately we’ve come to a “Dead End” here at this booth.  Forbidden Fruit Winery
In Full Bloom
My friend Tammy alerted me to a local floral delivery company called “Bear’s Blooms
Located in Kits, and starting at $39 per delivery including shipping, they’ll deliver a unique locally grown fresh selection as often as you’d like!  Once a week, once a month….whenever.
Your selection will be handpicked and delivered right to your door, fresh from local farms!  You can sign up on their website here…

Only problem is I’m not sure whether I want to go with Alma or Cecilia.  Holly and Julia are pretty nice too.  Such a dilemma!

Cecilia
Alma

Then there’s…Crafted Vancouver 2022 

Feast Food events feature foraging, harvesting and food preparation demonstrations & workshops, walks & talks and more. The true meaning of hand-crafted food.

https://craftedvancouver.com/

Today (May 3rd) is Layla’s fifth birthday!  Happy birthday little one.  We’ve got a fun filled packed day ahead.

Lastly;  I’ve been working (if you can call it that) on an upcoming podcast with a friend.  We’ve experienced a few learning curves as we go along with designing our logo and website and learning how to edit.  It’s almost at the completion stage now, and once we’re up and running I’ll be able to share it with you.  One thing for sure is we’re discovering people and places and having fun while doing so.

That is the reason why I’ve neglected posting as often as I have of late.  That, and a lack of fashion/film/restaurant openings as you can only imagine.

  But here’s hoping things pick up real soon.

Better Days Ahead

 

 

 

 

Sunday Supplement: Something to Sleep On

Think I’ve solved my occasional sleepless nights with one tiny little supplement called Melatonin.

Taking 3-5mg of melatonin sublingually (I prefer dissolving a tablet under the tongue for faster absorption), along with two Magnesium Citrate softgels before bed has helped me tremendously to having a more restful sleep.

Most people know about melatonin and have most likely either taken it or have considered taking it.  But just in case… let’s have a look at the benefits vs risks.  In general it’s a lot safer than taking a regular sleeping pill if you’re having trouble dozing off.  Plus, it won’t leave you feeling listless the next day.

MELATONIN

Discovered in 1958, melatonin is a potent hormone naturally produced in the body to help regulate our circadian rhythm, or natural body clock. Light is the switch that controls it: As daylight fades, levels of melatonin begin to rise about 2 hours before bedtime, nudging us to become sleepy. In the morning, when light hits the eyes, it signals the brain to halt melatonin production, and we grow alert.

The hormone melatonin plays a role in your natural sleep-wake cycle. Natural levels of melatonin in the blood are highest at night. Some research suggests that melatonin supplements might be helpful in treating sleep disorders, such as delayed sleep phase, and providing some relief from insomnia and jet lag.

Melatonin is a sleep regulator, not a sleep initiator,” explains Michael Breus, author of “Good Night: The Doctor’s 4-week Program to Better Sleep and Better Health.”

Since the 1980s, dietary supplement makers have billed melatonin made in a lab as a promising sleep aid. But its effects on occasional insomnia are not significant.

Take caution (as with taking any supplements in general):

While short-term use (a few months or less) of melatonin is thought to be safe in healthy adults, it can boost blood sugar, so it is not recommended for people with diabetes, Goldstein says. Taking too much can also lead to bad dreams and grogginess the next day, and it can make many drugs less effective, including high blood pressure medications, seizure medications, and birth control pills, Breus says.

Because dietary supplements are not regulated as much as prescription drugs, quality can vary wildly from bottle to bottle. One recent study found that 71% of melatonin supplements surveyed did not contain exactly what they said on the label. Some had more than four times as much melatonin as indicated, and 26% contained the powerful neurotransmitter serotonin, a chemical found in many antidepressant medications.

Like I mentioned above, I think that taking magnesium (and you can also consider Gaba) along with starting with 3mg. of Melatonin will complete your night cycle.  Trust me; I’ve had many sleepless nights.

Melatonin is generally safe for short-term use. Unlike many other sleep medications, with melatonin you are unlikely to become dependent, have a diminished response after repeated use (habituation), or experience a hangover effect.

No; no hangover effect – that comes from something else.

If melatonin for sleep isn’t helping after a week or two, stop using it. And if your sleep problems continue, talk with your health care provider. If melatonin does seem to help, it’s safe for most people to take nightly for one to two months. “After that, stop and see how your sleep is. Be sure you’re also relaxing before bed, keeping the lights low and sleeping in a cool, dark, comfortable bedroom for optimal results.

One more thing.  “Never go to bed mad.  Stay up and fight” – Phyllis Diller.

Sources:

Web MD

Mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle

Hopkinsmedicine.org

 

Café Portrait

Here is where the specific categories I’ve created for this website keep getting blurred.

Where do you put coffee and eye candy?

Photo: d. king

Unique, unexpected, creative, inspiring…Art with a side of Coffee.

An establishment like Café Portrait in Vancouver’s West End is so much more than just a place to grab a coffee or croissant. Sidenote: the pistachio croissant is the best I’ve tried.  It’s also a breakfast/brunch spot and an art gallery unlike any other.  The entire café is filled with original portraits on the walls, tables…even in a corner with hoodies and coffee cups available for purchase.

Photo: d. king

Photo: d. king

Photo: d. king

Photo: d. king

Told you so!

https://www.cafeportrait.com/

1120 Denman Street (close to Davie)

 

 

 

LifeStyle: details, details

It’s all in the details

(fyi – no animal was hurt to make these products – not even the tiger rug).
Love these trays – reminds me of another brand I love.

In a nutsell…worldly, mixed up, eclectic, exotic essentials for the home. Even just a little something sprinkled here and there around the home makes one feel more alive.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Elevated Kitsch meets Glamour in a colorful manner.

Photos this page: d. king

https://detailsbymrk.com/

Store location – South Granville, Vancouver.

Optimum Immune Maintenance

Previously on my Supplement Sunday postings I carefully selected and highlighted certain vitamins and health protocols that act as “superstars” in our bodies natural fight against viruses, especially the ones considered to be Covid Combatants.

I’m not interested in talking about Covid anymore as everyone is sick of being bombarded with news and information about it every single day for more than a year now.  With more vaccines popping up, and more people getting them, we will hopefully be able to get back to regular news of the day, other than you know what?

So in the next historical chapter to come, how do we maintain our immune systems for doing so will certainly be key to getting back on track…

I’m very picky when it comes to ingredients in supplements, so I became intrigued when I learned about a new clinically-tested plant sterol/antioxidant supplement designed to help regulate our immune systems.

Celt Immuno-Care is a proudly Canadian patented supplement formulation that “up-regulates” the immune system when it’s under-performing, as so often occurs just before we get sick, while also “down-regulating” when it over-reacts, as occurs when we suffer from allergies.  I’ve suffered from allergies my whole life but I can honestly say that since I started taking Immuno-Care just over a month now, I’ve noticed I’ve had fewer allergy symptoms.

As far as maintenance of good health goes, it apparently also works as an overall super anti-oxidant.

The company states that taking only one delayed-release gel capsule a day is guaranteed to help fight: seasonal Allergies, Fibromyalgia, Eczema & Psoriasis, Chronic Colds & Flu, Painful Joints & Muscles, Chronic Fatigue, Rheumatoid Arthritis,…and more!

While those are some pretty bold up-front claims, one should not automatically dismiss them out-of-hand without investigating the product further. So to know more, visit their website below. There you will find a breakdown of the ingredients – namely their blend of plant sterols (it’s the only “delayed release” plant sterol supplement available) along with their unique blend of a broad spectrum pine bark derived antioxidant combined with an essential fatty acid complex (Cellasate™).  Here’s an excerpt:

THE CELT NATURALS IMMUNO-CARE® STORY: “STACKING THE ODDS”

The founders and developers of Celt Naturals Immuno-Care®, Alan Fergusson and Jack Davidson, have always had a personal interest in healthy living, maintaining a nutritious diet, exercising regularly, and having a spiritual component in their lives to appreciate the beauty around them.

Alan Fergusson, Founder of Celt Naturals, Calgary, Canada, was a downhill skier for most of his life and an avid proponent of living a healthy lifestyle, having spent many years hiking in back country. He participated in 5 and 8K races and ran on most days to keep fit. Originally developed for Alan, the ingredients in Immuno-Care® have been shown to have a remarkable capacity to alleviate many symptoms related to immune system disorders.

Jack Davidson, Co-Founder of Celt Naturals, is an avid long-distance runner of many years.  He has participated in marathons, enjoys cross-country skiing, and participates in most outdoor sports. Jack’s personal interest in health and nutritional supplements began decades ago, when he too used various supplements for the maintenance of good health and overall wellness.

With the ever-increasing number of viruses, and their ability to mutate at a much faster rate than in the past, it has become increasingly important to maintain a strong immune system. Celt Naturals Immuno-Care® is an all-natural daily supplement that supports and maintains a healthy immune system.

While Immuno-Care® was originally developed to assist with serious illness, Celt Naturals emphasizes that it is not a cure.  However, it is a natural and effective immune system regulator that can help you “stack the odds”… in your favor by accessing available resources, whether traditional, alternative, physical or spiritual. It all begins with taking control. While the road of natural and alternative treatments is much less travelled than of conventional approaches, more and more people believe a natural approach to healing is an option well-worth exploring.  

FIORE

This Italian restaurant in the heart of South Granville has it all.

and wine be thy joy

As their website points out, FIORE is part casual trattoria, part Italian wine shop and part charming market You can grab a bottle from an extensive collection of Italian varieties and go, or make a reservation to eat there (when indoor dining is allowed again).

I took my sister for her birthday to their sister (ha, ha – no pun intended) restaurant FIORE FAMIGLIA at their Kits location so we could enjoy a nice heated patio.  Although at first we went to get a bottle of beautiful organic Northern Italian wine from the S Granville location to bring with us. Wine that you cannot buy in a regular wine shop or liquor store.  It was excellent.  Smooooth!

tasty bowl of warm olives to start

We shared pappardelle with braised short rib, sundried tomatoes, arugula, garlic cream, parmesan +fried shallots.  AND; roasted butternut squash ravioli with tomato beurre blanc, toasted pine nuts, friend sage + pickled apples.

The food was truly outstanding.  Service and presentation too – I’m talking about you, Jacob!

Finished with moist Olive Oil Cake with fresh berries, whipped cream + sprig of mint.

We’ll be back!

Photos: d. king

Vista D’Oro

A day trip to Vista D’Oro Farms & Winery in Langley, B.C., is like taking a step back in time.

Tamara and I met with Patrick, a winemaker with old-world techniques, who introduced us to the farm overlooking the vineyard and an amazing view of the Golden Ears Mountains. Hence, the golden view or, for those with an Italian influence, Vista D’oro.  Now there’s a name!

Patrick in the tasting room

We toured the barnyard complete with resident owl and elegant chandeliers.

Then over to the antiquated boutiquey tasting room where we got to try a flight of five varietals from heritage orchard fruits and vinifera grapes all grown on the property. All available for purchase in the Farmgate shop in the form of either wine or preserves.

Speaking of preserves…do you know that there’s 101 uses for their preservatory preserves?  I cannot describe them all in this post but I’ll give you a few samples.

I was already familiar with the ones sold at our local wine + cheese shop and used as a staple either on their own, or added to a cheese platter (2 uses right here, you’re welcome!).  The fig + walnut wine was my go-to for a long time but I hadn’t had it for a while.  I left with another jar and one peach with jalapeño  + tequila which was excellent and for the first time I tried the small batch mango-lime salsa. I added it to a burger last night and let’s just say the burger was much better for it.  They’re all excellent. Tamara left with the Driveway. No; not the actual driveway…It’s a bottle of red wine called “Driveway” (one of 3) but that’s another story.

Vista D’Oro is also famous for making delicious fortified wines such as the 2015 Walnut Wine and 2007 D’Oro Vin de Garde (with notes of current and butterscotch). We always learn something new.  Patrick referred to the apple cider as apple wine.  In the style of Normandy to Brittany, France – that is the correct name.

Ciders with names like “smoked tea” and plum brandy are seasonal and will be available soon. 

 

 

Which means we’ll have to come back.  I Look forward to that.

 
Charlie + Layla gave the place two paws up!

Photos: d. king

Header: taken from website      Owl: taken from Vista D’Oro Instagram Account