Wednesday, December 31, 2008
The Boomchix are another of the emerging country bands out of Vancouver – it seems like Calgary crossed the mountains.This is a group which has reached back to an earlier time for the roots of their music, but have managed to nicely adapt the older style to something current. By bringing the past to the present they have a rather unique sound which still has more of a country heart than does most of the country getting airplay on public country radio today.The sounds of the Boomchix comes from the vocal efforts of Janice Dunbar and Barb Wilkins, who are strong individually, but truly shine when they come together on harmonies. Dunbar for her part plays guitar, while Wilkins adds mandolin, which is a must for music with the roots this band has.Together these gals are wonderful. I love songs such as 'Til the Searchin's Done, The Edge, Bliss and Let It Go, all songs which should make it to radio but probably won't.This is where country belongs. The Boomchix know enough about country to be true to the style, yet are wise enough to use elements of rock, well controlled in their application, to enhance the music, not take it over. Too much country today is rock in an ill-fitting country disguise. This is not that. This is country, pure and simple, it just knows enough to draw the best from the past and the present while keeping it real.
Country fans you have to check them out
- CALVIN DANIELS -
Review first appeared in Yorkton This Week newspaper Jan.2, 2008 - Yorkton, SK. Canada
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
The fridge is full, the liquor cupboard is full, we have a stack of rented movies and the snow is almost touching my ass.
Yes, this snow thing is for real.
We will also have to miss our Christmas day dinner with my family in Chilliwack tomorrow afternoon.
There's nothing to be done, no one to whine to and we all agree that it's not safe to travel. When you think about it, we are only stretching out Christmas and learning how to spend Christmas a different way. We will still get to have those special days only on a different date.
Christmas is going to be different this year, celebrated on a day other than Christmas, but that's okay. The important part and the thing that makes it Christmas is being with the people you love.
Right now I am with my beloved, I am warm, I am safe and I am thankful.
Merry Christmas Everyone!
Monday, December 22, 2008
Turns out our car does really well in the snow, I didn't get stuck at all.
It was a beutiful, snowy cold night but it was calm and clear, and I dressed warm enough.
I didn't get sick! I popped a couple of Gravol natural source ginger pills and they seemed to do the trick so I won't be getting on a boat without them ever again.
SM's bosses are super nice people and they brought their adorable 30 month old daughter and his co-worker was a nice fellow too.
I stepped out onto the front of the boat and took this photo of the Captain. We found out as we were leaving that this gentleman played "the engineer" in the movie Das Boot. Cool.*
After we ate we all sang Christmas carols together. Twenty five strangers singing Jingle Bells and Frosty The Snowman together.
It was nice.
*could be bullshit
I took these photos from my deck last night just before the sun set. This blue colour is exactly what my camera saw. I love this shade of blue, so serene. I am officially snowed in, even my day with T has been cancelled due to snow. Our staff wasn't able to make it in today so Lorna has opened the shop, I'm heading over there to hang out in case anybody wants to spend some money.
I had a sleepless night last night and an early morning because it was time for the annual fire alarm inspection in our building. Ear splitting alarms going off every 5 minutes made me feel like I was slowly being driven insane.
I am a big believer in leaving the car parked when things get this hairy, none of the side streets have been plowed or sanded in Vancouver and we are talking about at least a foot of snow and impossible to navigate side streets.
There is only one problem with that theory, tonight is Superman's staff party and they have chosen to have a dinner cruise. I'm having a hard time getting my head around this one for a couple of reasons.
First, I need to pick him up at work and drive us to Granville Island to get on the boat.
Second, what the heck am I going to wear?? It's going to be freezing cold and slushy so warm clothes and boots with a good tread I guess. Not so elegant.
The third and most troubling issue is, I get sick on boats. The last time I went on a dinner cruise I ended up throwing up for about half of the 3 hour tour and then coming home and throwing up so hard I thought I was going to die. Motion sickness is the bane of my existence at times. I love the water and boats don't scare me or anything but I get so seasick I just feel like I want to jump overboard.
Tonight I will be taking Gravol and I am going to see if I can find some of those wrist bands that are supposed to help with my nausea problem.
God, I just can't understand why we couldn't go to a nice restaurant.
Wish me luck.
Friday, December 19, 2008
I must also point out that there really isn't one photo of me singing that is nice. I always look like I'm about ready to call the hogs when I sing and there is nothing pretty about that. I am glad that I've had my dental work updated and switched over to white fillings for the most part because I tend to open my mouth so wide you can really get a nice view in there. Ah well, it aint always pretty but it usually sounds alright.
Boomchix is playing a big New Years Eve show at The Princeton Pub again this year with Wichita Trip, (that's Superman's band) and The Burrs, (that's Janice's new band). We sold the event out last year and had a great time playing the show so I am looking forward to it. I'd rather be on stage at the stroke of midnight than almost anywhere else.
Today is a beautiful day, the sun is shining and it's really cold so the snow is staying. That never happens here, usually it snows and then it turns to rain and we're up to our asses in slush. I like this weather but it's drying my skin out.
Happy Friday Ya'll and don't forget to moisturize!!
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Holy crap! We are finally getting our winter and it's a doozie. We are supposed to get about 10cm today, it's really sticking right now and the temps are supposed to go down to -15 by the weekend. I work about a block away from my home so no snow day for me but it still remains to be seen if my staff will make it in from the West End. Oh ya, and customers, sure hope they come and shop. If I had one thing to say about shopping this season I would say do your best to spend your money in the small businesses in your neighbourhood. They depend on you to survive in times like this and offer a great selection of interesting and unusual wares. I know it's tempting to spend all your Xmas money at a one stop WalMart or Costco but save a little for your local. We need you. Okay, that's the end of my public service announcement.
We had a big party to go to on Saturday night and spent Sunday relaxing and recouping so all in all the weekend was too quick and before you know it Monday comes around.
I spent Monday with my ill friend T. I took her to some appointments and we had a wonderful day. She was suffering from some pretty major pain as I was taking her around and it was so hard to see. It's just very difficult to see someone you love suffer. I am so grateful to share these days with her though, they are precious to me. Funny thing, Mondays I am all there with T and so productive in her home and anything she needs I will do happily and easily. Tuesday is a different story, I am in a daze, I find myself staring into space or simply tuning out and basically not functioning very well. I feel nervous, scared and depressed but it's deeper than that. I know why it is happening and I think it's appropriate to the situation so I am just allowing myself to feel it. What else can I do?
So now it's Wednesday and it's a new, snowy day to enjoy. I love the snow and the feeling of being snowed in. Leave your car at home and go for a walk in your neighbourhood.
Stay warm people.
I'm going to take a picture out of my window right now and will make it the header for this post.
Friday, December 12, 2008
So, I'm not blond anymore.
I went in for a much needed haircut today and what I was left with was a little bit of blond tips and the rest of it was my natural colour. You know my natural colour, "Field Mouse No.9", it's not so great. With the blond tips it looked a lot like a bad Frost and Tip, remember those? I can't go all bright blond right now, I'm too pale and I like to wait until summer to do that. My stylist just looked at me and said, "You need to go brown!" I just couldn't leave it the way it was so I went and picked up a box of Coppery Brown and this is the result. I'm not 100% happy with it because the blond tips sucked up extra dye and look almost black. The colour of my "virgin" hair is quite nice though so hopefully as things fade a little it will blend in more with the tips. I retrospect, I remembered my stylist saying I should buy a "golden-brown" and I bought the "copper-brown". Maybe I should have gone golden but I've had problems with that in the past. I'm still in that stage where I catch sight of myself in the mirror and kind of scare myself.
So, I'm not blond anymore.
Holy crap! It's really coming down out there. I know this causes a lot of problems for a lot of people but I still love it when it snows.
Superman was really in a pickle about weather he should walk or drive when he was leaving for work this morning so I just called him to ask what he chose to do. It was raining when he left and I went back to bed for a bit and now it's crazy out there. If you live, or have ever lived in Vancouver when it snows you will know that I am not exaggerating. Right now the streets are full of inexperienced snow drivers and there will be trouble.
As I was on the phone to SM he told be the snow wasn't sticking on the roads yet. I thought I better step out on the patio and check for myself. Bad move. I stepped out in my bare feet and whoops! straight down onto my ass, phone went flying, didn't get hurt just wet and cold and a little embarrassed.
Smooth move Ex-Lax.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Holy Cow! I woke up to a blank screen and a cryptic message on my laptop and things did not look good. I did everything it asked me to and nothing was working. I had a corrupted file or something and it was round and round on the Vista train there. Scary. Eventually I called support at the company that I bought it from and talked to a nice man there. As I was telling him what I had tried it suddenly started working. I told him he was super good at his job and said goodbye but not before learning that the place I bought my computer is no longer in business and that my warranty was up. I feel so unprotected and I think I need to take her in for a check up and make sure everything is working properly, in the meantime I will start dumping anything important onto my external hard drive just to be safe.
Yesterday was a nice day. I was able to cut through my sad feelings and get on with it. Lorna and I did some Christmas shopping for our staff and I found some super cute ornaments that I will give as gifts and some to keep for myself. I also bought a scent diffuser that smells like a fresh Christmas tree. Really. It doesn't smell like one of those tree shaped things you hang in your car at all. Really. This weekend I will go down to the storage locker and find our cute little tree and the rest of our decorations and get some spirit going on around here.
Yesterday evening I went for dinner at a local bistro in honour of my friend Robin's birthday. Happy Birthday my friend!!
This morning our shop was featured in a Vancouver Sun article about shopping local!
It's so encouraging when local media promotes neighbourhood shopping. It's a great idea to hit some of those areas for shopping and support small businesses like our shop for instance, a person could shop there for all kinds of things. We carry beautiful clothes and fabulous accessories and lots of fun gift items. If you ever thought you should pop in and check it out I would hope that you might do it now. Support your local!
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
One of our closest friends has recently started palliative care at home, she's so very sick and it's impossible to accept. Monday is the day I go and spend with her. We talk and I clean and tidy and sometimes cook and we visit and catch up and gossip and sometimes we cry. I love these days and I feel like it's a special gift, being able to spend time with her, I am so grateful.
It's when I don't see her that the anxiety and the deep sadness starts and it's getting harder and harder to surmount. There's not much else to say except, 2008 has not been a great year. It's all been pretty tough, marriages ended and lives ended and some things felt harder than they needed to be. I am an optimistic person and I'm good at looking on the bright side most of the time but I'm still waiting to see the bright side here. She's my friend and she's a wife and she's a daughter and she's a mother and it doesn't matter how many times I say it's not fair it keeps getting worse.
Sorry for the sad post.
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
Yes, I cut and pasted the above from Lorna's blog because that's exactly how it happened. You can link to her blog by clicking the above paragraph.
Monday, December 8, 2008
That's a picture of our car at a somewhat busy intersection in Vancouver. This is the exact spot that our alternator shit the bed. It completely died on me, the radio shut off and not even the headlights worked. It was 12 midnight and I was just coming home from my girlfriend's house after an unusual weeknight consoling session. About 1/3 of the way home the battery light came on, then the ABS light came on. When I got to about 2/3 of the way home all the lights on the dash lit up and then she died.
I jumped out of the car and over to the sidewalk so I could call BCAA and direct confused drivers around the car so they could make their left hand turns. I was scared but it wasn't raining, it wasn't terribly cold and I had a well lit doorway to stand in while I waited the 45 minutes until the tow truck came.
By the time the tow truck showed up no less than 6 people had slowed down or pulled over to ask me if I was okay or if I needed any help. SIX PEOPLE! They were all men and I didn't get the impression that anybody was being creepy or trying to pick me up. They just wanted to make sure I was alright.
Thursday, December 4, 2008
Today, business and pleasure took Lorna and I into beautiful Steveston Village . We had a not too bad lunch and even a nice spicy Caesar to celebrate Lorna and G. closing on their new house. Congratulations guys! After our lunch and a meeting with our friend/advisor Karin we took a walk in the village and checked out a few of the shops.
This is in a store called the Prickly Pear. Yup, it's an upside down Christmas tree. I think it's really cute and I love the way the ornaments hang off of it. I was somewhat inspired to decorate our little home this season. Time will tell weather I will actually dig the decorations out of the storage area and put them out. There's probably about a 50/50 chance. I will keep you posted.
I love my little Sony Cyber-shot DSC-t70 . It wasn't expensive and I can carry it in my purse all the time, whip it out for a quick photo before anyone notices and share the photos with you here. I have never had a camera that I actually enjoyed using before this and I am so happy to have found this one.
I found this picture of Superman on Facebook. I LOVE this picture! It's just so rugged and handsome and I love the expression on his face. It was taken in the summer on the deck of The Railway Club and the photographer's name is Marc L'Esperance http://www.luxmatic.com/. It just so happens that Marc also engineered and co-produced the Boomchix album we recorded a couple of years ago. Talented guy.
Anyway, this is the nicest photo I have seen of my man, it's the way I see him all the time. Makes my heart feel all melty.
That's the man I am going to marry. sigh
He looks good as Clark Kent too.
Monday, December 1, 2008
We went on to have a lovely time at the reception and even did a little dancing to the kick-ass blues band they employed. SM seems to have picked up some new moves and was spinning me all around the floor. Fun!
Conratulations Spike and Barry!!
Friday, November 28, 2008
I realized pretty quickly you just read the signs. Keep the gate closed. Stop. Bypass. Up. Down. Press the button and it does what it's supposed to, let go of the button and it stops moving. It all just worked the way it was supposed to.
I find comfort in that.
Thanks to Bear for putting up with us all!
Thanks for the comments on the blog. I think I will keep it as is for the time being, maybe jazz up the layout or change the template. I'm just glad people give a hoot and are interested in reading it. I find it quite a thrill actually.
Have a great Friday ya'll!!
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
I had a great weekend but now all I want to do is sleep. We had a very close friend come into town looking for a "lost weekend" and boy, did we find one for him. Friday night was spent jamming and catching up.He's a stellar bass player and SM and I played in a band with him for almost 7 years and various projects after that. We also shared a house with him for at least as long before him and his lady moved away to Cobble Hill to immerse themselves in the Bluegrass. So we pulled an all nighter on Friday, came home, got some sleep and a late afternoon nap and then off to The Wise Hall for their 50th birthday party. The place was loaded with old friends seldom seen and it was great to be in our old stomping grounds and catch up with folks. After the dance we headed back to J and D's place and started to listen to old recordings that we had made back in the day. We had done a fair bit of recording in different studios and it was a gas to listen to where we were musically when we were so much younger. Eye opening actually.
All in all it made me realize what a long strange musical journey it's been and how important the people I have shared it with are to me. It never ends either. I am still meeting people who inspire me musically and it amazes me how deep my friendships run when they have the musical connection. I don't think this will ever change for me and I look forward to seeing where it all goes.
I am thinking of changing my blog name and format. I find the having to ask a question thing annoying and the title was funny but now it just kind of bugs me. I might be due for an overhaul.
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Thursday, November 20, 2008
I saw this little dog when I was doing business at The Fashion Exchange the other day. The dog is dyed pink. It's fur is actually pink and she's wearing a little pink cardigan, probably cashmere. When her owner saw me pull my camera out she hurriedly put the little fur trimmed parka on the dog. I mean, why am I telling you, you can see how well dressed this dog is. I'm shooting this photo through a glass door.
What do you think that little dog is thinking?
The little bitch has nicer clothes than me.
Tonight we had a dinner party. I made my famous chicken stew with dumplings and it did not disappoint. That meal is always a hit and such a satisfying thing to serve. People always love it and it makes me feel like a rock star in the kitchen. I think one of the best parts is how great it makes the house smell or in our case the apartment and down the hallway. I wanted them to smell the chicken stew as they got off the elevator and walked down the hall towards our door. The first words out of their mouths was, "Something smells goooood." That's my favourite part.
We celebrated a birth and a birthday and we got to hold the baby a little too. She is two weeks old and so tiny and precious. I LOVE holding babies.
By the way, that's a romaine heart, cucumber spears, delicious juicy red pear slices and craisins with a cherry balsamic dressing in the photo above.