You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘Vancouver’ tag.

I was running late. Had to drop off a costume to Sanctuary first and then whip over to Costco for some chocolates. I thought it would be nice to be able to offer visitors a treat when they stopped in to chat. I had put together a little slide show loop of pics from photo shoots, and had that on the end of my table playing on my laptop. The other end of the tabel had a list I had made up of all the retail locations where you could buy Cairns Technical Gear, some brochures and business cards. In the centre was a sample of the Cairns Full Protection Lap Blanket for wheelchair users and the Cairns Rain Protection Apron for scooter users.

I was a little disappointed by the location of my table. It was in the middle of the east side of the room, and because there was a projection screen in that corner, the lights were off. This wasn’t an issue for any of the tables around the outside of the room because they had spot lights aimed at their tables. In between presentations they would turn on the ceiling lights and cast some light onto my table… this is where the bowl of chocolates come in….

...all that glitters... and smells like chocolate...

I had some past customers come by to visit me and see the new product, which was a real pleasure for me. One of the customers who dropped by already owns two of the Cairns Full Protection Lap Blankets, one in each colour. It was the first time that I met her and it was such a treat. She was using her red one that day.

See how dark it is?

She was the second customer, that I had not met before, who approached my table for a chat. I just love that part of the Abilities Expo. I get to meet the people after they’ve been using the product for a winter and find out what they think, get their views and talk about new ideas.

I even had someone I’d been chatting with on Twitter come by and introduce himself. He writes a cool blog ‘Priority Seating’ about accessibility on transit in Vancouver. His Twitter handle is @nextstoporbust, if you’d like to join him. It’s so nice to be able to put a face to a name.

I had Rina Liddle and Prophecy Sun stop by from LiddleWorks to chat… we would be meeting up again later in the week to do a photo shoot.

Me and Rina

Me and Prophecy Sun

The afternoon was a whir of visitors and lots of people that came by 3 and 4 times to grab one of the chocolates. It was fun to watch as some people would saunter by for the 2nd time and act like they didn’t notice the bowl, only to turn back and grab a few more for later.

The entertainment was really good. The CanDance Team performed to a number by the Black Eyed Peas. And there was also a singer/guitar player that I really liked, Glenn David Loft. I’ve looked all over for the info and can’t seem to find it. Here’s a picture of him. If anyone knows his name, let me know in the comments.

For the last month I’ve been trying to find an active, younger guy who would like to assist me in my design process. I’m designing a pair of adapted street-wear pants that would be appealing to younger hip guys, that don’t want to look like they’re wearing adapted pants. Then, from across the room I spotted the best looking man I’ve seen in years. I started having one of those moments where I was thinking…”I can’t approach him… he’s WAY too good looking”. I’m glad I did because he was not only interested in helping me, but, he was full of ideas and enthusiasm. I’m looking forward to having the time to work on this new project.

Our friends Ken and June showed up for a chat as well. They have modeled for us in the past and are much fun to chat with. They have both been so supportive of what I’m doing.

Ken and June

The afternoon was a whir of visitors and lots of people that came by 3 and 4 times to grab one of the chocolates. It was fun to watch as some people would saunter by for the 2nd time and act like they didn’t notice the bowl, only to turn back and grab a few more for later. Can’t wait til next year. It’s a great event that ConnecTra Society puts on at the Roundhouse in Vancouver.

Advertisements

I was at a dance class last night.  At the beginning of the class one of my amazing teachers humbly asked us to each tell our name and one thing we love about Vancouver. Having only a few seconds to think about it, compounded by the fact that I was feeling a bit down in the dumps at the moment and adding that it was pouring rain outside… I said “My name is Leslie and I love the rain”.

Truth is, I do like rain. Do I love the rain, though? Not as sure. I just couldn’t think of anything else at that moment. And, that is why these rituals are so very important. By the time everyone else had said what they love, I too was reminded of some of the blessings I have derived from living in Vancouver. Yes, it does rain. It rains because Vancouver is in a would be rain forest. It would be, if all the trees hadn’t been removed over 100 years ago. In fact, it was once part of one of the very few temperate rain forests on the planet. This rain that creates months of ‘dull’ is the same rain that gives us the lush seasons filled with green and flowers that no one else in Canada can enjoy in the same abundance. This is the same rain that washes our dust away and keeps our Vancouver sparkly for all to see. Anyway, it’s all good if you have good rain gear.

Sure it rains here, but, only a 20 minute drive gets my daughter to the bottom of the Grouse Mountain Gondola where she can go up above it all and snowboard to her hearts delights. I pick her up and she smells like she was visiting heaven, fresh with ozone, and she has healthy colour in her cheeks. This is the same mountain that we enjoy, as it’s lights twinkle in our night sky. The same mountain lets us know that winter is here, by turning white, and that summer has finally arrived, by turning brown and green. Alway being carefully watched over by the Lions just to the north/west.

The sea air that comes wafting in from the Pacific helps us to keep perspective and to appreciate the water and its great power, as the tides go in and out with the moons. Each changing tide uncovers new hidden treasures. Living on the ocean I have met many people who sail and have even had the opportunity to join some of them on sailing trips. On a sailing trip you may be fortunate enough to spot a whale, a sea lion, or any number of other creatures.

The cultural diversity of Vancouver is just wonderful. With it comes the variety of restaurants, dancing, music and events. Anywhere you go in Vancouver you’re likely to hear a variety of accents, and see different types of dress. When I first moved here, I was fairly closed minded about trying different foods. I came from a small city in Ontario, where the most exotic culinary experience I had ever had was Chinese food from the China Doll Restaurant and Tavern. Now, I enjoy all kinds of foods from every country any time I feel the desire. There are so many great restaurants in  Vancouver, that it’s often hard to choose.

The night life here is really fun too. I saw 3 live bands last weekend alone, and will see Raphael Saadiq tomorrow night. There are all kinds of dance things happening all over the city. I like Cuban Salsa and there’s alway something I can go to every weekend if I want to . The Georgia Straight is a good place to look for up coming events in Vancouver , and it’s free. Often, I can be found enjoying the night life from my apartment. I have a fantastic view of Vancouver from my couch and the lights sparkle and twinkle and help me to remember the huge number of wonderful people and things to do that this city holds.

This is my favourite time of year… the street in front of my apartment is lined in cherry trees that are in full bloom. If it’s a sunny morning you could swear that it had snowed over night, before looking out the window. The light is so white from the blossoms.

Cherry Trees

I live very close to a crow rookery and every evening when the sun goes down the crows flock over my place enroute to their night spot. Crows are such amazing birds. If you head down to the rookery at sundown it’s just like a scene out of ‘The Birds‘. I wonder if Alfred filmed that in a similar area.

 

I probably shouldn’t go ahead and post this because it’s likely that I’ll kick myself for forgetting something. I just write off the top of my head, so, I often miss points that I later wish I had thought of.

Oh, yeah, did I mention the fact that there are bike routes all over the city and that you can actually ride all year round in Vancouver?

This friend, I hadn’t seen in 23 years. I lived in Kingston, Ontario in a past life. This other life, the one that ended 23 years ago, when I loaded my stereo, speakers and albums into the back of my Ford Ranger. I would have brought other things, if there had been room, but, what can I say? Music took priority. Still does today, but, now my stereo would fit into carry-on luggage.

I always had a bit of a ‘thing’ for Don, so when he told me he was coming out to Vancouver with a band that he does sound for, I was a bit anxious and a lot curious. We had dinner plans for the night of his arrival which ended up being just in time for dinner, since they were stuck on the runway in Toronto for 5 hours. It was really great to see Don. After so many years, it was oddly comforting to see him… we had not changed at all… well, we both look 23 years older, but, the rest was the same. We enjoyed a long, relaxing dinner at the Keg, with much, much catching up.

The next day at 1pm, was the Pacific Contact time slot the band had come to Vancouver to appear in. I was excited to see the Abrams Brothers do their thing, and I was not to be disappointed. James on fiddle, John on guitar and Elijah on bass. They performed 3 songs with an amazing level of energy and showmanship.

Don and I sat and watched Flying Bob while the guys got their gear packed up, and then we left and I had the honour of not only meeting the band but loading them all into the back seat of my 2-door Honda Accord … with all their instruments. It was a tight ride back to the hotel, where they went and changed and put their belongings into lock-up for the rest of the day. We loaded back into the car, and I was immediately transformed into ‘Tour Guide Slightly Extraordinaire’.

Out Kingsway to Main and then through the downtown East side, through Gas Town and then around Stanley Park. Stopped at the Totem Poles and a super BIG tree. Then, around the park again, since I missed the exit onto the bridge…back around and onto the Lions Gate Bridge, where John did some ‘through the roof’ Vlogging…. U-Turn…. back over the bridge to Denman Street. We parked there and walked to English Bay, where I took this picture of The Band.

 

James, John and Elijah and a bunch of laughing guys

 

We then headed SouthEast and took a spin down Granville, or at least as much of Granville as we were allowed to drive on. We were all really hungry by that time so we headed back to my place for a bit and to pick up my daughter to join us for dinner. Now we had a small challenge… I had to take everyone over to the restaurant in two car loads because it was starting to pour rain, and  we didn’t want to get soaked walking over.

We ate a wonderful burger dinner at Burgers Etc. on Hastings Street, compliments of the boys in the band, then headed back to my place to look at a few photos from 1985 of Don and myself, and  had a few laughs at our expense.

Here we are now… I was going to put a couple of the ’84 shots in but, I couldn’t get my incompetent HP scanner to scan the shots… note to self: never purchase another HP product… EVER!

 

...surrounded by laughing guys...

I then drove the guys back to the Hilton in Metrotown, where we said out goodbyes. It was a really fun weekend and a wonderful visit with an old friend and some new ones. Miss you guys already… hope you picked up some BC gigs while you were here! See you again soon.

 

I’ve been having a really hard time posting anything lately…. I’m always trying to keep it ‘light’ and ‘positive’, so when times are tough, I find myself with very little to say.

Time to lay it all out there… to bare my soul, as they say, or as close as I can get to that.

Last Christmas, my daughter and I kept a really low profile. We stayed home by ourselves. We went out for dinner one night and saw a movie with coupons someone had given us. We put up our tree and enjoyed our new little kitten, who entertained us by running up the centre of the tree, over and over again.

As this year winds down, I’m asking myself, how the heck I ended up here… more broke than last Christmas, wondering how on earth I’m going to pay my rent.  I feel like I worked every second last year and really didn’t have time to even stop to evaluate my finances. I just had to keep moving ahead with my goals with little time to stop and reflect on my personal situation.

I’m just going to start by trying to remember all the things that I did accomplish or put into action.

In the fall of 2009, I started working with Teresa, from Blacklake, who I’ve been working with ever since to establish quality manufacturing for a price that would make it possible to start selling Buggy Bag® at wholesale to retailers.  The manufacturing costs here made the price untouchable at that level, so I was only able to sell  the product one at a time, directly to end users… I wanted more people to be able to find it and use it.

The year 2010 started out with work for the movie ‘A-Team‘, going to a local theatre to fix a velvet stage curtain, and the construction of some Fencing Jackets for the Arts Club Theatre.

Much work with Rina from Liddleworks, and a photo shoot with the lovely Jessie Claveau for our new flyer which Rina designed.

Got my first set of samples back from Hong Kong. They looked pretty good, but, I wanted to make some changes to the fabrics, and components, and see what the prices would be like….shipping costs $350

My generous friends took my daughter and I to Whistler for Easter weekend where I was able to prove to my self that I could still ski. That weekend was such fun!

Went to the Dragon’s Den auditions and was told I didn’t have enough sales to move ahead. That was fine, and it was a benefit to me to work on the numbers etc. with Rina before hand. These exercises always shed light on the value of planning ahead and setting goals. My friend Wendy from PumpEase made it through the auditions, and onto the show which aired in October.

I was contacted by LandMark Direct, who do TV commercials like the ‘As Seen On TV’ ads. I decided to have them make a 1 minute commercial for me that would run in 150 spots across the US. The purpose being to test the market to evaluate where advertising $ are best spent. I sent some samples of the Stroller, Jogger and Wheelchair weather blankets, and the process began.

Received another round of samples from the factory … shipping $340

I met with the SCISN Board for the Rick Hansen Institute where I met with Gary McPherson about designing some custom wheelchair weather protection for him. I made a few sales there and met some lovely and inspiring people. It was through my work for former Vancouver mayer Sam Sullivan, that I ended up there. I had done a custom wheelchair poncho for him in the fall of 2009.

I did a bit of work for a friend who had a contract to do some costumes for the Olympics. Then, an old school friend of mine moved back here from Singapore. She needed a place to land while she settled back into the Vancouver workplace and found a place to live. It was really nice having Kai here for that time and we had many fun times and good meals together. We went to many free Olympic festivities. It was really fun being in Vancouver at that time!

I shortened many, many sleeves for a TV show called ‘Human Target‘, did some pattern work for two local women’s wear designers, then I headed over to my friend Deb’s studio to help her with a bunch of gaberdine 50’s styles she was manufacturing for a TV show called ‘Fringe‘. I think I spent a few weeks over there. Nice to get out of my place… even though my place is like heaven, I still get lonely… I know I talked her ear off… I miss working with people.

Got another set of samples back, decided to focus on just the three main products for now, because of the minimum order quantities. The zippers and fabrics now looked good, but we still have to work on the reflective logo…. shipping costs $275

Found a US Patent and Trademark Lawyer and started to proceed with this process…$2500 later, I find out that even though, I have the trademark Buggy Bag Registered here in Canada and have owned the buggybag.com address since 1998, and I make and sell mobility accessories…. they feel that there will be some ‘confusion’ with the other company that makes shopping cart covers and uses my name only with an extra “g” on the end….I should have applied for the US TM back when this company first offered to buy my URL…. who knew they would just add another ‘g’ to the name. The patent is still in process… and the cost is unknown, but a fair guess would land it in the $10,000 range.

Had Lawyers read contract with Landmark Direct… $500

Found out I need some very pricey licences to be able to sell a ‘stuffed’ article in Ontario, Quebec or Manitoba. One for each province and for each year at $500 each! Ouch, there goes my rent for that month.

Next, I stumbled across a blog written by the mom of a beautiful little guy by the knick-name of Bugg. I was moved by her ability to document their life and the wonderful quality of her blog photos. http://thebuggslife.blogspot.com/ I sent this little guy a Buggy Bag Stroller Blanket to use on his tiny wheelchair. I was so happy to meet this family and help make Bugg’s outings a bit cozier. We still keep in touch and I hope to one day meet them in person.

I then built some leather dresses for the character ‘Ginn’ on ‘Stragate Universe‘, and started working on another dog movie called ‘Treasure Buddies‘ featuring lots of cute children’s costumes, and also squeezed in an alteration of a down jacket for the movie ‘The Big Year‘, hemmed some shirts for ‘Ice Road Terror‘, and a bunch more custom work for ‘Stargate Universe’.

Got some more manufacturer samples still with issues …. shipping $400

It was around this time that I met a great guy by the name of Brian Bell, the founder of Interfit in North Vancouver. Some friends and I went to their fundraiser, which I also blogged about.

Got many different script revisions over this time and finally approved one and then had to get the money together before the commercial production could begin…. $3000

I made 9 pairs double layer fleece leg warmers for Sam Sullivan to give out to his associates, the moved onto yet more alterations for ‘The Big Year’, much more work for ‘Stargate Universe’ and the leather coat I made for ‘Sanctuary‘, which I also blogged about. It was right around this time that I got the sad news that Gary McPherson had passed away.

More one on one work with Liddleworks… business plan.

Got a first copy of the actual commercial. It looked great and I was really happy with how our conversations went. I was so apprehensive about the whole thing to begin with and the amount of $, but, if everything went well we would be getting lots of sales and valuable information about the marketplace, not to mention the commercial to use in whatever way we liked…$3500

More work with Liddleworks… hangtag designs…. three tags with usage illustrations. Had a friend help with the french translations and found a hangtag manufacturer close to the factory in China.

I made a dozen various aprons for ‘Red Riding Hood‘ before starting on the years fun show…. ‘The Fairly Odd Parents’ I always have fun working for Angus Strathie and this show was no exception! Many wonderful costumes for this show.

More work on business plan…more $$$ I owe Liddleworks.

Right after that I had the pleasure of meeting Jim Byrnes and making him a pair of trousers and an overcoat for ‘Sanctuary’.

A man I  spent two years trying to forget, suddenly appears in my life again, only to vanish again two months later.

Another photo shoot featuring 5 wheelchair models and one stroller model, a mom and a sweet working dog…$600

Pay for hang tags… $1100

September finally rolled around, the commercial was ready to air, the production was in place and would be ready to ship at the end of Sept. I had to decide where to have the product shipped to, and decided that most of the sales would likely be from the US, so I found a ‘pick and pack’ place in Blaine.

Volunteered at the World Wheelchair Rugby Championships. So fun, met lots of athletes and got to see some of the games.

Commercial aired to no sales and therefore no stats… frustrating, but, must keep looking ahead.

Landmark proposed an agreement to sell the product through catalogue sales.

Lawyer read another contract…. $500.

Chris, my brother and I head down to the ABC Kids show in Vegas to see what the competition is like, what to expect when we go to the show as a vendor, evaluate what kind of a booth we need,  to look for sales reps and get a bit of R&R. We walked hundreds of miles that week and most of it was in the convention centre. We also, visited just about every hotel in the  city, we won $76, and we had some fantastic meals.

Launched new version of the Web Site that has been in the works for many months… it looks great and it’s only Phase I! Was immediately “de-friended” on facebook by the fellow that did the last version of the website.

Went on a sailing trip to Molly’s Reach with some friends, which was another stellar weekend!

Product is ready to ship, need to get financing… bank turned me down… evidently I should have bought an apartment instead of trying to make this great product available… at least that’s what they would have me believe!

Went to a private investor, who saw the real reason I’m doing all of this and wants to help make it happen…. $17,000 debt

Landed the product in Canada and the US and took delivery the same day that we had our Buggy Bag reception for friends, customers and media…$550. Had a blast even though no media showed up, the important people were there. Including David Rountree, who I met when I volunteered at the World Wheelchair Rugby Championships back in September. He brought his ‘Floor-Board‘ for all of us to try. Sylvi MacCormac was a special musical guest at our event, who was also one of our models at the last shoot. We felt so honoured.

Inspected the shipment that arrived here in my living room with Teresa from Blacklake. We realized there was a small QC issue with the shipment and had to look at our options…. do we send them back? I’m totally against that idea. I try a few different methods to deal with the issue and discover that I can solve it 100% with the use of my commercial iron.

One of the perks of working in film is the ‘wrap party’ at the end of the show. I went to 4 wrap parties and a gala benefit for Spinal Cord  Injury. I wore the same outfit to 3 of them!

Got an order for the stroller and jogger blanket from Babies’R’Us… a small trial order for the Canadian web site.

Had to buy a Universal Bar Code number for the company… $500

Dear friend Barbara passed away, which left me in a blue funk for some time. Sadly missed.

More work for  the TV shows ‘Stargate Universe’ and ‘V‘.

Teresa and I head down to the States to deal with the QC issue on that part of the shipment. One day and two very sore backs later and we are back in Vancouver, satisfied that the product is 100% perfect.

December rolled around with no movie or tv work for me, so I started making phone calls. I always said I wasn’t a sales person, but, one call led to another and another and by mid December I had already shown the wheelchair weather blanket to at least 7 places and got it into 4 stores and 10 locations in the lower mainland. This is the easiest thing in the world to sell. It just makes sense because it’s easy to use and  it helps people stay warm. I’ve been focusing on the  wheelchair weather blanket, but, also got the jogger weather blanket into two stores as well.

I read a blog that really touched me and I responded by sending a wheelchair lap blanket to the autor, Patrick, for his wife Patti. The response I got was worth every bit of the hard work I’ve done this year!

I put 2 paid ads on Craig’s List one in Seattle area and one in NYC, looking for commissioned sales reps to rep the wheelchair weather blanket… $50. There may be a few potentials among the responses… I sure hope so. And it looks like I may have a rep in the Chicago area, who is a friend of Teresa’s…. Yeah!

Ok… now it makes sense!  As a single mom, with no financial help from anywhere, I’m just getting deeper and deeper in debt. This year of business has cost a lot. I’m financing my business with my income from film work, my lines of credit and those kind enough to help me.  My coffee maker, my kettle, my watch, a computer, and my hair dryer have all become incapacitated in the last couple of months… not sure if I’m just noticing all of this because I can’t fix or replace them at the moment….but, it just adds to my anxiety levels. I have to keep reminding myself of the quote I put up on my facebook wall a while back:

‎”I do not think that there is any other quality so essential to success of any kind as the quality of perseverance. It overcomes almost everything, even nature.” — John D. Rockefeller

I sure hope that’s true… because my intention is to keep on keeping on, no matter what, because I believe that it is the right thing to do, and to continue to count my blessings.

This year I:

posted 171 times on the facebook fan page….

tweeted 684 times….

wrote 28 blog posts….

responded to 479 emails about the offshore production….

did work for 16 different production companies

responded to 275 emails from Liddleworks….

added a store front to my FB page as a way to sell old stock…

had 750 Buggy Bag units manufactured

took 49 guitar lessons….

spent 60 hours in dance classes….

got to 99% on Brain Challenge….

hugged my daughter 730 times….

toilet trained my cat….

After reflecting on the past year, I know what my blessings are as clearly as I know everything is going to turn out great.

I’m thankful for my daughter, my brother, my parents, my friends, my guides, my supporters, my vision, my health, my atitude, my customers, my humour,  my suppliers, my teachers, my dance partners, my employers, my mentors and everyone who has crossed my path for whatever reason…..please know that every single one of you are responsible for at least two of the things I’m grateful for.

Last Friday I start a 3-day stint as a volunteer for the 2010 World Wheelchair Rugby Championships. It was a slow start of putting promotional packages together and  poking holes in the credential holders and attaching the lanyards to them. It was still fun because the company was good…

Me, two other volunteers and a mountain of lanyards...

This morning started out at the Sheraton Hotel, with me merchandising some swag in the athletes lounge… that was fun. I was to keep the shirts, posters, pins, etc. in order and make sure that any visitors to the lounge had what they needed. I had lots of people come in to buy games shirts and I bought one of the delicious chocolates.

Games shirts and stuff

A few guys from team Sweden came in for a rousing game of foosball.

Foosball

Then, later in the afternoon, they were seen playing doubles tennis…

Doubles Tennis Match

Then there were the guys from the UK that were Rocking out on Rock Band

Rock Band Team GBR

Manni and Ash shot a great game of pool, although it turned out that Ash was a bit of a “shark”… it was a fun game to watch.

Manni and Ash

I met David Rountree, the inventor of the Floor-Board Wii Platform for wheelchairs. This is a really neat thing. The platform is designed to  be seated right on top of the Wii Balance Board. It tips/rocks down at the back as the wheelchair pushes onto it and then it even back out when the chair is perfectly balanced on the platform….Game On!

Original Floor-Board

David demonstrated to me how it worked and showed me how easy it is to slalom…yet later when I tried it myself, it proved to be much more difficult!

Tight Slalom David!

Travis from Canada, Vancouver to be more precise, gave it a whirl too.

David and Travis

From what David was saying, he’s just about to get the 3rd prototype back from the factory, each one better and lighter than it’s predecessor. I can understand what he’s going through, trying to get this great product out and into the hands of people that will use and love it. I feel like we have a lot in common when it comes to moving our products ahead…I have a lot of the same issues when it comes to buggy bag… it’s a long road, but, certainly an enjoyable journey.

David and 2nd prototype

I had such a great day and met so many wonderful people… I can’t wait til tomorrow when I go and volunteer at the Richmond Oval. I’ve never been there before and hopefully I will get to glimpse a few minutes of these sold out games.

Court 1                         Court 2

9:30               1 CAN v GBR 2 USA v GER

12:00             3 SWE v FIN             4 NZL v ARG

These are the games that will be on when I’m there tomorrow…. there will be others, but, not while I’m there. I’ve never seen the famous game of MurderBall played, but, I’m told it is very exciting…. anyway, I will let you know in my next post.

Anyone who lives in a large-ish city probably has a version of what we, here in Vancouver call the “Science Ball”, otherwise known as “Science World” or even the “Giant Golf Ball”.  It’s real name is the “Telus World of Science“… whatever the name, the knicknames are for obvious reasons.

Science Ball

All adults who have gone to visit a science centre with or without the kids, know the torture of really wanting to try the cool things out, but, feeling that they should let the kids go first… usually it’s all experienced through watching the kids.

Friday night I went with 3 friends to “Science World After Dark“, an evening set up for adults only. They had comedians and even served beer and wine. It was such a fun evening that I will for sure make a point of going next time.

Leslie the "Zen Master"

Here I am pairing off against one of my friends… whoever can push the ball toward the other person, is the more relaxed of the two.  Evidently, I’m the most stressed out of the 4 of us… or just not able to shut off the stuff that’s bouncing around in my brain, because the ball came to my end every time!  The groovy headwear makes this one worth it all though…

This was cool…. it works with two different weighted pendulums that you move with your feet… let them continue to swing with their own momentum, to create the drawing..

Leslie Flying

I know this isn’t the best shot, but, at least it clearly proves that I can fly…

Here, Rina demonstrates her superb powers of attraction….

Apple Hologram

Here I am showing the difficulties involved with Hologram Fruit… it’s impossible to grasp…

seeing double

I also crashed on a virtual slalom ski course at least 6 times and raced in wheelchairs with my friend…(I lost)

Last year a friend asked if I wanted to volunteer for a Vancouver event that helps deserving secondary grads that can’t quite swing the “costuming” aspect of the event. It’s called the Cinderella Project, and yesterday was my second year volunteering as what I like to call a “bird”… although I’m probably the only one that thinks of us that way. You remember in the Cinderella cartoon, where all the little birds flit around her and sew her dress and fix her hair, etc….

I worked with a team of seasoned costume/fashion construction experts. There were about 8 or 9 of us there in the alterations department. The girls would come up one at a time, Deb would do the fitting of the dress and make notes. The dress would then be altered and hung up on a rack where the girl and her fairy godmother would pick it up.

Here I am... looks like I'm just standing around watching Mel work... I'm sure that wasn't what I was doing....

Maybe this was taken just after I melted a hole in that red dress hem with the incredibly hot iron…… I do look rather worried! That was last year. I didn’t burn any dresses this year!

This is a huge event and these kids literally get outfitted from head to toe…. hair cuts/styles, make-up, undergarments, dresses, tuxes, shoes, and accessories.

Then they get a professional picture taken. I don’t get to see many of the guys, because I’m doing the dress alterations, but, the girls are so happy, they glow.

It’s a really rewarding event for everyone that get’s involved. I will be doing it again next year.

Ever wonder what it would be like to audition for the Dragon’s Den? Well, I took the Buggy Bag® Lap Blanket and Stroller Blanket today, and it was a lot of waiting with really cool people.

The day started out kinda funny because I was up until 3:30am fixing up a little mistake I made on the calculations, but I slept really solidly for the whole 4 hours. Got up and got ready for the day… shower, smoothie, and to top it off a Late. Hauled a baby stroller down the 3 flights of stairs at my place, and jammed it and the samples into my trunk along with my file folder including all the stats and info my friend Rina and I had compiled.  Just waiting for my friend, who is also heading down there to do her own pitch.

When she drives up we all leave for downtown Vancouver. I had been given the advice by someone who was on the show last season, not to show up until the time they say….. fine we’ll be there for 11am then. We get there and the room is already packed, which means, we have to wait through 48 other pitches. Red-faced I make the apology to my friend and her model, as I know that if we had come an hour earlier we would have been up in the 1st hour….. who knew how long it would take to get through 45 others. They are all pros working at the CBC, and it did go as fast as humanly possible. We were all seated at tables with our ideas and coffees, chatting about various things. I met some fun and interesting people.

After about 3 hours one of the people that works there came up and asked Wendy what she had and what her sales were last year. She was suitably impressed, as Wendy is the owner of PumpEase hands free pumping bras. http://www.pumpease.com/ they are not only a functional product, but also, practical and fashionable….. and she has sales….. lots of sales.

Then the woman turned to me and asked me what I’ve got. I pulled out the product and she said, it looks like a good product, what were your sales? I told her and she said that I should come back next year when I have greater sales…. I asked her if I would still get to pitch and she told me I was doing that right now! Turns out she was one of the producers…. anyway, that’s a good goal for me and I’ve got a couple of ideas about how to improve the sales…. if any of you also have any thoughts about how I can do that, let me know. It’s a useful and much needed product, and I intend get it out there to the people that need it, in whatever way I can.

I decide to stay and offer support to Wendy while she waited, and just hang out and enjoy the scene. By now, everyone has been there so long that, there is a much more relaxed feel in the air… almost jovial. By the time Wendy went in with her model Donna, she was feeling pretty good (as she should; she has a great product and it has a certain appeal in terms of  “show value”, if you know what I mean). When they came back they were excited. It was a good experience.

Who knows what the future holds for any of us, but, if we can just take each moment, as it is, and cherish it, it is all good!

Rina at the computer

Rina has been so much help to me through this. She does freelance marketing for small and start-up businesses. She also did the photo shoot with Jessica (see “photo shoot” post) or visit her blog at http://www.liddlethought.blogspot.com/

Dragon's Den Audition Day

from left to right—- Donna (PumpEase Model), Wendy (Owner, PumpEase™),Leslie(Owner, Buggy Bag® Mobility Accessories), with the new Buggy Bag® Lap Blanket…. hot off the press….

Thanks for stopping by, love you guys, Leslie

There was so much negativity whirling around the whole idea of the Olympics here in Vancouver, that as it approached most people took on a typical “what will be, will be” attitude. Now that it’s finished, I can say with pride that Vancouver did a really fantastic job as a host city! Everything about our fine city was just…. well…. better, during the games. Traffic flowed quite well as did the beer and the people that filled the streets and venues. Wonderful art exhibits and performers were all over the place and the atmosphere was electric. But, what really clenched the games for me was the closing day. Imagine me, the hockey antagonist, getting up early on Sunday morning in order to claim my stool at the local pub! It just doesn’t get stranger than that!  And I had fun…. I even followed the game… took the utmost in concentration after the 3 pints, or was it 4?, but, I did it….. It was a great game and something to be proud of as a Canadian. It was really cool after the final goal when the whole pub broke into singing “Oh Canada”…. brought tears to my eyes.  And 14 Gold Medals! Wow…. Good going Canada! …now…. you deserve to be able to show off those giant beavers and moose!

I’m really looking forward to the Paralympic Winter Games! March 12-21  2010         Maybe I’ll even try to catch a sledge hockey game! Wheelchair Curling sounds amazing too.

I’ve been at least a month, maybe even two without pain. It’s funny how you lose track of time when you’re pain-free, but when your in pain, every minute seems to double. I did notice I was without pain and was feeling really good about it. All that ended at about 2am this morning when I was rolling over in bed and realized that, not only was my leg not responding, but the pain was challenging me big time. This morning I couldn’t walk and needed help and my cane…damn! I had plans to do all kinds of things today and now I’m a prisoner in my apartment, wrapped in a blanket, bottle of Advil and cup of tea at my side. Time usually makes the difference, so I guess I’ll just have to resign myself to the idea of “couch begging” Emma to get me stuff and help me. Hopefully I’ll be able to support some weight tomorrow. What happened? oh yeah…. the Olympics are here in Vancouver and Emma, Kai, (our friend) and I went down town. We started in False Creek, walked up through YaleTown, headed down Robson, then down to see the flame at Canada Place. We were just about to head over to the Londsdale Quay, when we heard the announcer say that the wait to get back from the other side on the Sea Bus was 2 hours. We decided to get on the train and go to Granville Island. Had a bite to eat on the Island and then headed home. Our feet were sore from walking all day and we were tired, so it felt great to get home and relax. I knew I had over-done it, but didn’t know to what degree until this morning.

Here’s an x-ray of my left leg.  Two plates and 22 screws. The pain is in my knee area, probably related to the ligament and tendon damage. This happened in 2002. I’ll tell you more about the incident in another post.

my left leg

buggy bag® mobility products

Buggy Bag® Mobility Products is dedicated to helping loved ones stay warm and dry while on the go. Buggy Bag® Stroller, Jogger and Wheelchair blankets protect against the cold and wet, while offering visibility in low light conditions.

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 2,718 other followers

del.icio.us

Tweets

Twitter

Follow BuggyBag on Twitter

Time Lines

December 2018
M T W T F S S
« Dec    
 12
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930
31  

buggy bag®

Advertisements