Boulevard Magazine Central Island - Summer 2022

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Puffy sleeves, full skirts and wild west fashion

GET YOUR BRAIN IN GEAR The growing interest in brain health


Echos of tradition in sleek new build

Jump into bed with us.

Come see us at Uptown

Upper Level, Uptown Mall, Victoria 250.597.7378 •

2022 VW TAOS now available!


elcome the newest entry to our growing SUVW family, the all-new 2022 Volkswagen Taos. Our smallest compact SUV is more than big enough for all your adventures, with precise Germanengineered performance and a wide range of distinctive features. Like you, no matter what life brings, Taos is always game. Now in stock at Harbourview VW in every trim level and color! Come in for a test drive today!

4931 Wellington Road Nanaimo | 250-751-1221





Photo by Lia Crowe

By Angela Cowan

Kyla Decker, of Renu Laser & Skin Care, on location at


Yellow Point Lodge.




WALKS + WINE Travels in Madeira By Suzanne Morphet

By Sarah D’Arcey


GET YOUR BRAIN IN GEAR The growing interest in brain health By Jane Zatylny |

By Ellie Shortt

Wild West fashion at The Hatching Post


NOURISH YOUR NOGGIN Creating food for the brain

Echoes of tradition in details-rich new home

On the Cover





SPECIAL SECTION The Influencers By Lia Crowe, Don Denton & Angela Cowan








EDITOR’S LETTER The best way to give a speech (in writing)

18 24


By Susan Lundy

By Angela Cowan



By Lia Crowe

Curated with care: Maison Cookware + Bakeware


By Sandra Jones

Calm horizon By Janice Jefferson







NARRATIVE March of the critters

By Sean McIntyre Niki Parker



Go west coast

True colours: Pipi Tustian

By Susan Lundy



By Susan Lundy



BUSINESS CLASS Take cover: Budget Blinds By Sean McIntyre

On the move By Kaisha Scofield |

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contributors “I adore more traditional designs



and so it was a treat to feature Ann-Marie and Jason’s home. Not only does it have beautiful elements—that kitchen!—but it’s set on a gorgeous small acreage, which fit the farmhouse perfectly. And with two kids myself, I definitely appreciated how Ann-Marie chose durable, wear-friendly materials!” Angela is a Victoria-based freelance writer and editor whose stories have appeared in Boulevard and Tweed for the last decade. She also works with individual and corporate clients to develop marketing, promotional and training materials, and recently began leading writing workshops for both new and experienced writers. Find her at

“For this issue's fashion story,


I went back to my roots, having grown up on a farm in the interior of British Columbia. We packed up our fashion trunks and headed west to The Hatching Post in West Kelowna. It provided our fashion story with the optimal saloon backdrop, with femininity and flair shining through.” Sarah is a celebrity fashion stylist and is known for her exceptional creativity and attention to detail.


C E N T R A L I S L A N D L I F E AT I T S F I N E S T SU M M ER 202 2

BOULEVARD GROUP Mario Gedicke PUBLISHER 250.891.5627 MANAGING EDITOR Susan Lundy ASSOCIATE EDITOR Lia Crowe CREATIVE DIRECTOR Lily Chan DESIGN Michelle Gjerde Tammy Robinson Kelsey Boorman ADVERTISING Mario Gedicke Vicki Clark Andrea Rosato-Taylor CONTRIBUTING Angela Cowan WRITERS Lia Crowe

Sarah D’Arcey Janice Jefferson Sandra Jones Susan Lundy Sean McIntyre Suzanne Morphet Kaisha Scofield Ellie Shortt Jane Zatylny



Darren Hull

“Madeira surprised me in the best


of ways. For an island less than half the size of Maui, it offers a fascinating variety of experiences, along with a culture all its own. This unique sense of place and fierce independence comes from being cut off from the European mainland for centuries, yet being located on the trade route of early explorers. Its gentle subtropical climate is a bonanza.” Suzanne is a journalist who focuses on travel writing. She loves to discover places that are off the beaten path, but deserve to be better known.


DISTRIBUTION 604.542.7411

Victoria Boulevard ® is a registered trademark of Black Press Group Ltd. All rights reserved. No part of this magazine may be reproduced without the publisher’s written permission. Ideas and opinions expressed in this publication do not necessarily reflect the views of Black Press Group Ltd. or its affiliates; no official endorsement should be inferred. The publisher does not assume any responsibility for the contents, both implied or assumed, of any advertisement in this publication. Printed in Canada. Canada Publications Mail Product Sales Agreement #42109519.

Tel: 250.381.3484 Fax: 250.386.2624

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ILLUSTRATION Sierra Lundy CIRCULATION & Marilou Pasion




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“Thank you Nanaimo,

Furniture & Mattress Destination

for Shopping Local!”






Sleep Gallery




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It’s worth the Drive to Dodd’s! 4900 Uplands Drive, Nanaimo


WE’VE GOT INVENTORY! “You Want It! We’ve Got It! Come Get It!”

Gordy Dodd, Founder


the best way to give a speech (in writing)

It was a grand, glitzy night at the annual Ma Murray newspaper awards gala in May, especially when Boulevard took gold in the best magazine category. However, although editor of the magazine, I was okay to not be there. I’ve been to many awards galas over the years and I know well the dread I feel watching winners traipse up to the stage—often in challenging high heels—pluck the award from the presenter and, worst of all, lean into the microphone and give a little thank-you speech. During that lead-up time, which often occurs over dinner—to drink or not to drink?—I’m at about 40/60: 40 per cent it would be cool to win and 60 per cent I don’t want to go up onto that stage and give that speech. It’s not that I’m a coward exactly: I’ve white-water rafted; I’ve flown in a plane with the door off (to get better photos); I’ve even signed up for sky-diving at least twice in my life before finding my brain and un-signing myself; I’ve flown in an ultralight contraption. I like wild-sailing seas and fast motor boats. But public speaking and I aren’t on good terms. I think my abhorrence of it reaches back to childhood when I blushed so easily, even the thought of blushing made me blush. I grew my hair long so I could tilt my head forward and cover my flaming cheeks. I wore a red sweater, hoping people would think my scarlet face was merely a reflection of the wool. All through school and university I sat at the back of the class, avoiding teachers’ eyes. In a high school course that required an oral presentation, I created a slide show and spoke in the dark. I don’t know how many university courses I dropped to due to their oral component. Ironically, in my final semester of university, I was stuck in a class that required a presentation. I decided to skip the oral presentation and forfeit the marks by merely neglecting to sign up for a time slot. Unfortunately, the professor discovered me on the second to last day of my undergrad experience. He squinted at me, looked slightly perplexed and asked when I would be honouring the class with my oratory presentation. “But I’ve gone four years without having to do this,” I told him. “Too bad,” he said. I believe I became a writer so I would never have to give another speech. At first, newspaper-award winning was fun. In the early days, winners walked up to the stage, retrieved a trophy and walked back to their seats while people applauded. Scary, but not terrifying. This all went downhill in the mid-’90s at my first Jack Webster awards gala—an exclusive, high-stakes event, featuring all sorts of famous-faced media people. I watched with mounting alarm as winners accepted their awards, pulled little bits of notepaper from pockets and gave Oscar-style speeches, thanking everyone from their moms to their pet parrots. I suddenly, adamantly, did not want to win. But—god help me—my name was called and up I went, any coherent thank-you speech turning to mush in my mind. I accepted my trophy, leaned into the microphone, choked out a simple, “Thank you very much,” and headed off the stage. (Later—once the drinks were flowing—people said my speech was the very best of the night.) Over the years, I’ve had to give other speeches. There have been book launches, a wedding toast, another Webster gala. It turns out I’m actually not bad at it. But I’m quite happy to see photos of my Ma Murray-award-winning colleagues, standing on the stage with publisher Mario Gedicke at the microphone. (Congrats to all the winners, especially those with whom I work daily on Boulevard: Lia Crowe, Don Denton, Lily Chan, Michelle Gjerde and Tammy Robinson.)

Susan Lundy Editor Susan Lundy is a former journalist who now works as an editor, author and freelance writer. Her latest book, Home on the Strange, was released earlier this year via Heritage House Publishing.

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Showroom hours: 10:00 - 16:00, Monday to Saturday CALGARY EDMONTON WINNIPEG TORONTO MONTREAL OTTAWA




From working in aesthetics to being a flight attendant, Niki, who is also the mother of two teenage daughters, has found herself working with her passion for home decor. In describing how This & That came to be, Niki says, “After 10 years in Vancouver, we moved back to the island and I worked casually at Sartorial Boutique. Shortly after, the idea for a fashion truck came to fruition. In 2017 we launched Haute Wheels Mobile Boutique and in December of 2019 the space next to Sartorial became available, so I decided to open This & That, essentially an extension of what the truck offered. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Haute Wheels has been in hibernation, but will be back at the Nanaimo Night Market this summer.” And what aspect of Niki’s work gets her the most fired up? “While living in Vancouver, we renovated numerous homes, moving 11 times! So I’m very passionate about home decor and [helping to] personalize your space.” Asked to describe her style, Niki says, “My home is very eclectic. For example, a neutral palette with lots of white and subtle pops of colour, but we also have a disco ball in the front entry. Fashion-wise, I’m pretty casual; jeans, T-shirt, sneakers. I have yet to meet a romper that I didn’t like. I love to accessorize.”

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Last book read: Becoming by Michelle Obama. Currently reading: Untangled by Lisa Damour. Favourite day bag: Sticks & Stones belt bag and Neverfull tote. Fave jewellery designer: David Yurman. Necessary indulgence: A good moisturizer, like Midnight Paloma Everyday Moisturizer. Scent: Pomegranate Noir by Jo Malone London. Must-have hair product: Ouai Leave In Conditioner. Piece of art: Ettiquette Spiked Heart. Era of time: 1970s. Favourtie cocktail: Paloma. Favorite city: Los Angeles. Flower: Peony. Favourite place in whole world: My home.

250-586-1111 | 5-220 Island Hwy W, Parksville |

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design notes

Calm horizon


By Janice Jefferson, Modhaus Design


hese soft earthy hues have me dreaming of warm evenings with pastel-sky sunsets. Natural sand colour with hints of lavender and peach calm my soul—it's chill and relaxing. Add these elements to your surroundings to calm your mind and heart.




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1. Escape—Howe Sound 36x72 by artist Corrinne Wolcoski, Oceanside Art Gallery, $5,400 2. Moscot Sun Eyewear, Goo Goo Googles Optical, $300 to $500

3. TER1060 Lilac Nubuck Gadea, Cardino Shoes, $209 4. KASEBERGA Cool Basket, IKEA, $50 5. Metronome Rug in Camel, Block Shop Textiles,, $266


6. Mirror With Laurel Leaf, This & That, $145 7. Chenevard Damson & Magenta Quilt Designers Guild, Pots & Paraphernalia, *call for pricing 8. Wonderland by Annie Leibovitz, Bolen Books, $100 9. Barefoot Venus Coconut Kiss Bath Oil, Sutubra Beauty, $20

10. LOLL Picket Outdoor Bench in Sand, Gabriel Ross, $1,619

11. Heim Moon Bloom, This & That, $25 7.




11. |

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well and good



on the move 14 |


Stay healthy this summer with a movement-based holiday WORDS KAISHA SCOFIELD

We are lucky enough to live in a province that is packed full of world-class activities that will keep you entertained while keeping you active and supporting wellness.


h, summer: long lazy days at the beach, slow evenings around the campfire, carefree floats on the lake and idle hours in the hammock. The ease of summer can be wonderful, but it can also be a time when positive movement and nutritional habits are tossed out the window. It’s easy to understand why. Summer schedules are more relaxed, days are longer, and there are opportunities for physical and nutritional compromise around every corner—cowboy coffee by the beach, weekends of day drinking and s’mores-infused camping trips. It is, however, possible to achieve summer bliss without completely losing track of your health. We are lucky enough to live in a province that is packed full of world-class activities that will keep you entertained while keeping you active and supporting wellness. Here are a few summer vacation ideas that offer adventure, movement, relaxation and fun.


We are rich with stunning ocean vistas and wild beaches here in BC, but too often we are unfamiliar with the vast and mysterious waters that surround us. A great way to become one with the ocean is to take a kayaking trip alongside Pacific Rim National Park, in Northern Barkley Sound and Clayoquot Sound. Whether you are a seasoned paddler or still getting your sea legs (or arms, in this case), this adventure has it all. Paddle through the shores surrounding Tofino or Ucluelet, exploring the Broken Group Islands, ancient First Nations villages and old-growth forests. Many tour companies offer a variety of outings from quick day trips to epic five-day adventures. These are the gains: kayaking works your arms and shoulders but is also an incredible way to build core and back strength. Spending time on the water is one of the best ways to boost mental health and wellness; the sound of the waves, coupled with the salty air and motion of the water can provide mental clarity and peace of mind.


We are spoiled with incredible skiing opportunities in BC, and when the snow melts those hills turn into topnotch hiking destinations. Spend a weekend in Whistler and Blackcomb, exploring the stunning glacier-fed lakes in Garibaldi Provincial Park that boast water so blue it has to be seen to believed. Or head to the beautiful Taylor alpine meadows with awesome mountain formations like The Chimney, found on Black Tusk hike. This area offers everything from challenging multi-day hiking trips and mountaineering to smaller day hikes with stunning waterfalls. These are the gains: any walking activity is beneficial to your legs, hips, glutes and core, but alpine hiking takes things to the next level. Working under strain, with a backpack and/or at higher altitudes challenges your body (muscles and cardiovascular system) in a way that you won’t experience in the gym. Alpine hiking is a great way to combine adventure with physical activity.


Yoga retreats abound in BC but there is something extra special about Savasana on the Gulf Islands. The Salt Spring Centre of Yoga is a non-profit facility that is one of the longest running retreat centres in the province. Its annual Community Yoga Retreat is a popular multi-day, family-centred event that includes activities for kids, evening events, food and, of course, plenty of yoga. Yogis can choose to camp on the vast property or rent a private or shared room in the main centre. There are yoga retreat centres all through the Gulf Islands that offer single- or multi-day retreats. These are the gains: yoga is full-body training for every level. The various styles and poses allow for excellent movement and stretching of the big and small muscles of the body. Because of the extensive breathing and mindfulness |

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Strap on your hiking boots, fill up your water bottle (don’t forget your electrolytes, and get your body and mind into nature. practised during yoga training, physical and mental strength are perfectly combined. A yoga retreat is an ideal holiday for someone who is looking to boost their physical and mental health while also engaging in some deep self care.


If you are looking for something extreme, there’s nothing better than skydiving over the Pacific Ocean. Skydive Vancouver Island, located just outside of Nanaimo in Nanoose Bay, will take you 10,000 feet into the sky where you will tandem jump and enjoy a 200-kilometre/hour free-fall for 45 seconds, before your guide pulls the chute that will sail you back to earth. If the thrill of jumping out of a plane isn’t enough, the views from the sky of Comox and Cowichan Valley, Mount Baker, Mount Arrowsmith and Barkley Sound will blow your mind. This adventure is one for the bucket list. These are the gains: the majority of growth in this experience is mental, the importance of which can not be understated. Bravery and self-reliance are huge parts of training, for sport and life. It is safe to say that jumping out of a plane, while several thousand feet in the air, can provide a new perspective.


The Okanagan is famous for its wine, and for good reason: it has more award-winning wineries than anywhere else in BC. What do you do when there are so many amazing wineries in one place? You go on a tour, but not just any tour. These tours are by bicycle. Throughout the Okanagan there are companies offering wine tours via manual and electric bicycle. These tours often include delicious picnics, extra activities like hiking and, of course, wine. These are the gains: cycling is one of the most efficient forms of movement. Your leg and glute muscles are definitely doing the bulk of the work, but cycling involves participation from the entire body, including the mind. Road cycling is an excellent way to combine motor and cognitive training because of the necessity for the collaboration of physical and mental movement, navigation and coordination. The best way to experience the beauty of British Columbia is by getting into the wilderness through nature and movement-based holidays. There are endless possibilities and incredible companies and guides ready to take you on the adventure of a lifetime. So strap on your hiking boots, fill up your water bottle (don’t forget your electrolytes, and get your body and mind into nature.

Designing Kitchens for your Lifestyle

5144 Metral Drive, Nanaimo 164 West Island Hwy, Parksville 250-585-5059 16 |




Photos courtesy of

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But as we undertook our journey in late April—amid typical west coast sun-rainsun weather—we were astonished by the array of new-to-us sights and experiences.


ake the Pacific Marine Circle Route, add in a passion for nature, a need for relaxation and a palate that’s craving divine flavours, and you’re ready for the Spirit Loop—a driving tour that explores the Vancouver Island communities of Langford, Sooke, Port Renfrew and Malahat. This is a well-loved route that my husband and I have traversed many times. But as we undertook our journey in late April—amid typical west coast sun-rain-sun weather— we were astonished by the array of new-to-us sights and experiences, and elated by the Spirit Loop’s celebration of everything west coast. It’s tough to decide what stood out the most. Was it the views? Because they were spectacular. On our first evening we dined in the newly renovated Masters Lounge at Westin Bear Mountain Resort, gaping at the expansive edge-of-the-mountain view as seen through the retractable glass roof and walls above and beside our table. Then there was the inky ocean vista from the rocks at Sheringham Point Lighthouse in Sooke, and the mesmerizing, top-of-the-world scene from the Malahat SkyWalk. And almost capping it all was the view from the window-encased bathtub at the Malahat’s Moon Water Lodge, where the sight line extended up and down Finlayson Arm. In the distance, we could see the hive-like structure of the Malahat SkyWalk jutting out from the trees; and it was here in the morning that the sunrise stretched pink fingers from the horizon straight into the room. |

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Highway near Port Renfrew.

So the views stood out, definitely. But the hikes were great too. At Sooke Hills Wilderness Trail in Langford we followed an easy-to-navigate path through a dense thicket, where the sun shone on lichen-draped trees and it felt like an enchanted forest. The trail led us to a waterfall-viewing platform and a suspension bridge. Later, we strolled the windy-sunny-rainy Whiffin Spit in Sooke, then scrambled down a hillside path to the Sheringham Point Lighthouse, wandered the rocky beach in front of our dockside cabin at Wild Renfrew, and explored the beautiful blossoming trees in the orchards at Merridale Cidery & Distillery in Cobble Hill. But perhaps most surprising was our hike along Sombrio Beach—a surfers’ paradise near Port Renfrew—where we followed directions just off the beach to an absolutely spectacular waterfall and water-carved canyon. Food and drink options on the Spirit Loop also stand out as highlights, starting with our impeccable dinner at Masters Lounge, where a three-course meal paired with wine by master sommelier Bipin Bhatt had us swooning over both the flavours and the artistry of the presentation. Elevated even higher by the view, it was a royal feast. Bridgemans Bistro, nestled along the Mill Bay shoreline at the foot of a marina, was also a revelation. Views from the floor-toceiling windows, the chill atmosphere and excellent food will, going forward, forever command a Mill Bay detour from Highway 1. It claims to pay homage to the blue-collar sensibility of the hardworking, adventurous bridge worker, offering “dishes that are imaginative yet grounded in the unique hard-working communities we serve.” At House of Boateng in Langford we met chef-owner Castro Boateng and got the story behind his restaurant’s menu, which merges flavours of West Africa, the Caribbean and Pacific Northwest cuisine. (More info below.) Not only did we relish our breakfast here, we walked up the road to Castro’s store and purchased a bottle of HOB hot sauce. Recommended! We also found spirits on the Spirit Loop, first at Sheringham 20 |


Sherringham Gin.

Distillery in Sooke, where we sampled the distillery’s unique westcoast take on gin, liqueur and aquavit. Divine. At Merridale, we discovered that in addition to producing a full line of ciders, Merridale was one of the very first craft distilleries in BC. We ended up tasting a flight of spirits and a flight of ciders, and headed home with a bottle of Rumb—a very tasty rum-style spirit made with honey instead of cane sugar. Our tasting took place in a beautiful indoor setting but (had the sun been shining) we could have sat outside in the picturesque orchard picnic area. Accommodations? Options are plentiful, and all our overnight spots were pet-friendly. Our experience included a spacious, upscale room at the Westin Bear Mountain. (While the rooms are lovely now, they are all scheduled for renovation. New owners at the Westin are renovating much of the hotel, and if the new Masters Lounge is any indication, the results will be spectacular.) In Port Renfrew, we stayed at Wild Renfrew in a sweet two-room cabin accessed off a dock and in close proximity to great food at the

Food and drink options on the Spirit Loop also stand out as highlights.

Castro Boateng.

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Renfrew Pub. We spent our final night at Moon Water Lodge, and while the location just off the highway on the Malahat might not be optimum, you can solve the problem by hopping in the bathtub, drinking in the views (and perhaps a glass of something bubbly) and forgetting all about everything else. The final stop for me on the Spirit Loop left me in excellent spirits. Back at the Westin Bear Mountain, I stepped into Amatista Spa and slipped into the velvety world that is their signature West Coast Body Wrap, using award-winning BC-made Beauty Through Balance products. This luxurious, detoxifying body treatment features Pacific seaweed, sea salts and pure green tea, as well as a Canadian glacial mask, with ingredients harvested from the mountains on Vancouver Island. The experience was so deeply relaxing, I drifted into a light sleep, dreaming I was wrapped in a cocoon, while my face was gently rubbed and my scalp massaged. A true west coast experience and a perfect conclusion to the Spirit Loop journey. (To learn more or watch a mini documentary on the Spirit Loop, visit





We had so many amazing feasts on the Spirit Loop, but a meal at House of Boateng is really something special. There is a lot of love and creativity here, with West Coast flavours enhanced by an African influence. Take the highly-popular Hippie Bennie, which has an African-style chickpea base with a hollandaise sauce featuring wild BC mushrooms and nettle. I’m not generally a big breakfast person, but my gluten-free, dairy-free vegetarian African Bowl (jollof rice with Senegal flavours, pickled vegetables, scrambled eggs and smoked eggplant puree) was so good, I may have to change my morning ways.

Our pet-friendly, two-bedroom cottage at Wild Renfrew gave us lots of space to spread out. It was comfortable with a seaside, west-coast vibe, a full kitchen and space outside on the deck to curl up, drink a morning coffee and watch the play of the ocean. The Renfrew Pub, located on the same property, is a waterfront restaurant and homey gathering place, obviously popular with locals. The menu has many good options, and our selections were delicious.





Malahat SkyWalk starts with an easily-accessed 600-metre “TreeWalk” through a beautiful arbutus forest. It leads to a gentle-elevation spiral ramp that winds upwards 32 metres to a sightseeing lookout. The views are spectacular, extending over Finlayson Arm, Saanich Peninsula, Mount Baker and distant coastal mountains. There’s also a cool slide to zip back down on, and construction is underway for a nearby food and picnic area. This is a world-class attraction, and definitely worth a visit.

Merridale Cidery & Distillery creates delicious and intriguing ciders and spirits that are handcrafted sustainably with integrity, curiosity and care at a beautiful family farm. Here, you’ll find a cidery, distillery, eatery and tasting bar, all located amid grassy knolls and a gorgeous wooden building. The landscape—with its apple orchards and lush picnic area—produces an immediate exhale. This is a place to relax, linger and savour the flavours of cider, spirits and excellent food options. We can’t wait to go back.


New world. New challenges. New learning. |

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true colours

The creative world of Pipi Tustian


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hen Pipi Tustian says art is in her blood, she means it. “When I was young, I didn’t even know that it was being creative, I just thought everybody lived that way,” she says. “My parents weren’t traditional artists in the sense of being painters or writers or playwrights or anything like that; they were an immigrant family coming from the war-torn country of Latvia. They were just so happy to be here, however, we didn’t have much.” Ever-present in her childhood home was the whir of a sewing machine, where Pipi’s mom sat nearly every morning to create or mend clothes for the family. Each piece of fabric, Pipi says, came to embody a chapter of the family’s past. This growing collection of symbolic day-to-day items blended the family’s Eastern European heritage with a new identity at the eastern edge of the Canadian Prairies.

“It wasn’t just about making the couch match the cushions, there’s a history and stories attached to all of those things,” Pipi recalls. “The house was always filled with all this magic.” Pipi fondly remembers regularly boarding a downtown-bound bus with her mother. The pair would search through Winnipeg’s garment district as though it were a mysterious land filled with curiosities and treasures, the stores bursting at the seams with chiffons, satins and linens. “She would take me by the hand, and we would walk into a building that was chock-a-block full of corduroy and tapestries and bolts and bolts of fabric from floor to ceiling,” she says. “It was like a playground of all my fantasies with the drapery and the touch and the feel and the colour and all of that texture. It was just always there in my life.” Pipi’s love of colour combined with a reverence for repairing and repurposing household objects are major influences in an Eileen Fisher

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Follow us on Instagram @tulipenoireclothing |

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artistic career that spans three decades. For years, Pipi’s unmistakably unique paintings and fabrics—which include cushion covers, tablecloths, dining table runners, napkins, blankets, towels, throws along with much more—have been fixtures at Cowichan Valley shops such as Ironworks Crêperie and Edward Jones in Mill Bay. For the hands-on, do-it-yourself crowd, Pipi offers fabric workshops to small groups and has even launched her very own brand of high-quality fabric paints. Personal commissions are also available for people wishing to commemorate a special event with custom-painted, personalized linens. As COVID-19 restrictions loosen, Pipi continues to grow a strong social media presence predominantly on Instagram and Facebook, where she can keep up to date with her current projects and frequent workshop opportunities. “Creating for me is a way of expressing emotion,” she recently posted on her Facebook site. “From the darkness of grief comes the colours of joy. Life is a roller coaster, and art keeps me strapped in my seat.” She describes her artistic process as a kind of “soul connection” in which her mind is free to pursue a natural flow to create unique shapes and patterns in a generous heaping of colour. Once the idea has sparked the process, Pipi says, she often doesn’t even consciously think about the process itself. “The starting point is a feeling, and then I see how the colours play against each other and what the patterns and shapes are trying to say,” she says. “I can be inspired by nature or even watching a movie. A lot of times I won’t know what’s happening with the plot because I’m looking at how the colour of an actor’s skirt is against the couch that she is sitting on.” Her latest venture is Studio 1867, which she began a year ago with a team of co-creatives in the funky Whippletree Junction along the highway south of Duncan. In a move that harkens back to those same values instilled in her by her mother’s morning ritual at

The starting point is a feeling, and then I see how the colours play against each other and what the patterns and shapes are trying to say.


Immerse yourself in nature as you embark along a 600 metre elevated walkway rising 20 meters through an enchanted forest. Then ascend a circular ramp gently rising to the top of the 40 metre, architecturallyinspiring Spiral Tower lookout. Breathe and take in the beauty.

OPEN YEAR ROUND Just 35 minutes from Victoria



the sewing machine, Pipi hopes to give some colourful treatment to unloved and forgotten furnishings. “At Studio 1867 we’re repurposing the older pieces of furniture that people have sort of loved but maybe discarded in favour of the new things that maybe don’t last as long, even though they are twice as expensive,” she says. “If you have a piece of furniture that you’re wondering what to do with, and everybody does, this is a great option. Everybody has that old piece sitting in the corner that they can’t get rid of because it belonged to grandma or they have an emotional attachment to these things because they’ve become part of the family.” Older furniture, Pipi adds, tends to be more characterful, more unique, and built to last. She says many modern furnishings are less sturdy than those made even a generation ago because changes in the global manufacturing process have prioritized lightweight materials and building techniques to minimize shipping costs. What’s more, Pipi says, refurbishing and reusing furniture keeps bulky household items out of the landfill. Clients upload pictures of their furniture project to the Studio 1867 website, where Pipi and her team reference makeover options from a catalogue of fabrics compiled from designers from around the world. Clients then book an in-person appointment for personalized advice, a chance to feel through fabric samples and search online catalogues for options to bring their project to life. “Just like when I was a kid going into those fabric places, we have that huge number of fabrics, but just not in rolls, now we have them in books and samples and that sort of thing,” Pipi says. The process may have changed, yet Pipi has found a way to keep the magic alive. For more information about Pipi, visit her on Instagram (@pipioriginalarteverydayliving) or Facebook. Details about Studio 1867 are available at




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good taste

Curated with care

Research is a key ingredient at Maison Cookware + Bakeware WORDS SANDRA JONES

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f your mother ever told you that watching television was a waste of time, talk to Julia House, owner of Maison Cookware + Bakeware in Nanaimo. “The Food Network launched when I was in my early 20s and I started watching Alton Brown’s show Good Eats. He had a scientific perspective on cooking and baking that I loved and the nerd in me thought: ‘I can do that!’,” laughs Julia. Suddenly she began making everything from scratch. “That show flipped a switch in my brain. I started by buying a pasta maker and went from there. As my skills grew, so did my need for the right tools.” But those tools weren’t always easy to find. Julia turned to trusted sources such as Cooks Illustrated magazine when she needed to find a specific kitchen tool, but would then be frustrated when she couldn’t buy it locally. “I’d decide I wanted a carbon steel skillet and could order it online, but shipping cost a fortune. Or I’d just pick up a tool locally and it didn’t work the way it should. I wondered why kitchen stores were not doing the research for me. That was when I thought: ‘One day I’m going to have my own kitchen store’.” That dream percolated in the back of her consciousness as she worked at several retail jobs, created a food blog and moved from Edmonton to Nanaimo. But it wasn’t until her then-husband quit his overseas job—allowing her to follow her dream—that she made the leap. “I knew exactly the kind of store I wanted to create because I had been thinking about it for so many years. I had a list of products I wanted to carry because I had spent hours on the internet doing the research and then testing the products in my own kitchen.” Two months after signing a lease on her retail space, she opened the doors. “We opened in mid-October and were open seven days a week. We didn’t take a single day off until Christmas,” Julia recalls. “By that time the store was stripped bare and we had no stock left.” Word spread quickly through social media and word-ofmouth. Julia believes in a singularly simple core philosophy: “Anything we stock has to absolutely follow one rule: If I wouldn’t have it in my own kitchen, I won’t have it in my store,” she says. That point of differentiation results in an exceptionally low return rate of merchandise purchased and an equally high return rate for repeat customers.

Everything we create is 100% gluten free

ome Wtheelcwarm days of summer

413 Fitzwilliam St, Nanaimo Located in the Old Quarter 250-754-7913 • |

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“I knew exactly the kind of store I wanted to create because I had been thinking about it for so many years.” “Our customers tell us that they love to see this kind of quality in Nanaimo and that they come to us for our knowledge and our passion. Our staff has incredible product and cooking knowledge and we love to share what we know. We’ve been able to build great relationships because of that.” Strong relationships have also been built with the more than 60 manufacturers from which Maison Cookware + Bakeware purchases merchandise. “We’ve been fortunate in that our store is often selected to carry prelaunch items and we love getting the cool toys months before anyone else.” One of those items was a bread lame used for scoring bread before baking. “The supplier said he’d turned down other companies but knew we were choosy about what we bring in. We were the first store in the world he agreed to sell his product to.” Store products run the gamut from one-of-a-kind items like a handcarved ravioli tool made in Japan to a Smart Oven air fryer. “We can’t keep this brand of air fryer in stock. I use mine every single day and I’ve cooked everything from pies to chicken in it. It’s faster and more efficient than my full-size oven.” Julia, who follows the foodie world closely, is quick to anticipate

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the needs of her customers, but even she can’t anticipate everything. “The influence of social media is huge and global trends can take off in a day. Two days after we started seeing hot cocoa bombs on the internet, I tried to buy the hemisphere moulds needed to make them. The supplier was already sold out and has still been sold out for nine months.” Of course, also in the category of “unforeseen circumstances” was a global pandemic. “By some bizarre stroke of luck we had always wanted to have an online store,” says Julia. “We had delayed it for years because it takes a long time to populate all of the items we sell, but we were able to launch it six months before the pandemic.” As a result, the store never completely shut down and instead relied on online sales, curbside pick-up and cross-Canada shipping to fill its orders. And then a funny thing happened: “A few people decided to learn how to make bread,” jokes Julia. Indeed, the lockdown prompted a widespread interest in cooking and as people experimented with everything from making sourdough to Japanese souffle pancakes, they turned to Maison Cookware + Bakeware. “There was definitely a shift in the customers I saw during the pandemic. People wanted to support local businesses and were more conscientious about where they were spending their dollars. There are so many small businesses in Nanaimo and we need to keep that vibrancy.” While much has changed over the past six years, Julia’s passion for her business has never waned. “Having this store is more than I ever dreamed and there is no doubt that it’s the best thing I’ve ever done.”

Welcome to your new favourite dining experience! Boasting spectacular ocean and marina views, we’ve crafted a menu that’s just as compelling as our setting.



Boulevard: What’s your most-used kitchen tool? Julia House: Ultimate ladle by GIR. It’s made of silicone so it’s flexible enough to scoop every drop of soup or sauce out of the pot. It also doubles as a measuring cup—I use it all the time. B: What’s your signature dessert? JH: Lemon cream tart. B: And your dinner party go-to? JH: I often have people over for pizza night because I have a Breville pizza oven.

B: Who is your favourite cookbook author? JH: Dorie Greenspan, who has co-written books with Julia Child. I’m thrilled she’s started following us on Instagram. B: Who are your dream dinner guests? JH: Dorie Greenspan, Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively (she loves to bake and I think they’re fun) and Zoë François, who is a baker and cookbook author with her own show on Magnolia Network.

@seascapedining 3521 DOLPHIN DR, NANOOSE BAY (250) 468 0780 |

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hot properties


Approx. 3,000 square feet 3 bedrooms 3 full bathrooms Custom home office Custom media room

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Brilliance by design Sleek, details-rich new home focuses on connection and echos of tradition WORDS ANGELA COWAN




fter spending 15 years building high-quality custom cabinetry for clients’ new homes, Ann-Marie and Jason Fifield of Heronwood Custom Cabinetry at last had the opportunity to use their expertise on their own dream home, and the result is a gorgeous farmhouse with both a traditional and a sleek design that looks out over a spectacular view of Mt. Prevost. |

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Having already undertaken a hefty renovation of their rural home in Duncan, the couple had no immediate plans for building when they purchased the fouracre lot adjacent to theirs five years ago. “It was thick forest, and we basically bought it as an extension for our boys to mountain bike and play,” explains Ann-Marie. She and Jason slowly started building a list of design ideas and drafting some visions for the property. Then, “Just as COVID19 approached, we thought we did need more space and a home office, and we started the process with Pacific House Design,” she says. With two young boys and their dogs running around, high-quality, durable materials were top of mind, as well as making sure the space was as functional as it was beautiful. Completed last July, the farmhouse is bright and airy, its black and white exterior finishes are classic and classy, and its interior design is carefully planned to ground the space with consistency and elegance. A streamlined front entrance offers a simple bench and row of wall hooks next to a double set of floor-to34 |


“Sticking to the style of design throughout the home was important to us. Making sure everything felt connected to the design. Even with my office, it’s green and then my son’s feature wall right above is green. And my other son’s room is blue, and the media room below it is blue.” ceiling cupboards, keeping the line of sight tidy as you move into the great room, where a stunning stone hearth surrounds a wood-burning fireplace underneath a cathedral-peaked ceiling. Turning, it’s natural to keep moving into the kitchen, where a sizeable island of light quartz and natural oak presents a wide space to sit, eat, cook or chat. The home has custom built-ins throughout— shelving flanking the fireplace, at the front entrance, in Ann-Marie’s expertly designed home office—but it’s here in the kitchen that Heronwood’s expertise truly shines, especially in the details.

A furniture kick runs along the inside of the island, making it easy and comfortable to stand and prepare meals. Added panels and posts reinforce the traditional aesthetic, while the light quartz countertops lean more modern and sleek. Satin brass hardware elevates the already elegant white cabinetry, along with the curving two-stage crown moulding and wide window trim. Glass-fronted cabinets run along the top, lit by a soft glow within, while a fully glass cabinet adjacent to the window offers an ideal spot to display favourite dishes.

Nanaimo · Victoria · Courtenay |

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Inside the cabinetry are some of the most interesting features. Beyond the panelled fridge and freezer, several doors reveal ingenious designs. There are rollouts under all the sinks to avoid anything getting lost in the recesses. An appliance lift on one side of the island houses the couples’ stand mixer, at the ready and easily tucked away when finished. The corner cupboard by the large porcelain farm sink is fit with a mechanism that’s half lazy Susan and half pullout, that swings out in a semi-circle and then draws the deep inside shelves out. Even putting aside the charm and beauty of the design, the house is remarkable for having absolutely zero unusable or wasted space in the entire design. Leaning into that efficiency, a butler’s pantry just around the corner also serves as a laundry room and mud room, again utilizing every square foot for the best use. A media room, Ann-Marie’s home office and the master suite anchor the other three corners of the ground floor. Upstairs is the boys’ domain, with two bedrooms—each fitted with a shiplap feature wall to add a splash of colour—a bathroom done in dark honeycomb tile and with a concrete quartz countertop, and an open playroom. “I splurged on the carpet,” says Ann-Marie, smiling. “It’s wool, and I just absolutely love it.” The thick pile underfoot and angled roofline in the boys’ playroom evokes a cosy sense of mountain-top living, and gives the family a touch of familiarity in the new build. “I love it,” says Ann-Marie. “We’ve always had old character homes, so to have this one angled ceiling, it still has that feel of an old home.” Heading back downstairs, especially striking is the collection of lighting fixtures. “I was really particular with the lighting package that we chose,” notes Ann-Marie.


No staining, fading, toxic resins or maintenance


2890 Allenby Road Duncan 250.746.7257 1-877-746-7257

Visit matrixmarble on Instagram



Come and visit our showroom and speak to one of our stone experts

Fabricating quality stone kitchens and bathrooms since 1980.

Outdoor fu rnitu r e has ar rived! New shipment of fountains, fiberglass and ceramic planters. 250 715 7220

Every room has beautiful custom cabinetry. The kitchen turned out beautifully, and the whole house was really well-detailed. The great room chandelier—a beautiful black iron ring studded with exposed vintage-style bulbs—creates a showpiece that immediately catches the eye. But even more impressive is the second chandelier that hangs at the exactly the same height from the outside peaked patio roof. In the afternoon, the pair of lights create a neat mirroring effect; at night, the reflected glow seems to grow, and connects the warm living room to the vast sky and stars beyond. That iron finish is echoed in the dining room fixture, square-edged but with similar bulbs, and ties the two spaces together. Also complementary are the brass-finished library lights atop the built-in shelving surrounding the fireplace and the hanging cone fixtures over the island. Amazingly, the entire build only took about eight months, even in the midst of pandemic delays and obstacles.

Old Farm Garden Stone

Just south of Duncan next to the Old Farm Market 5174 Francis Street, Koksilah B.C. V0R 2C0 |

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“Our high level of efficiency and organization is what allows our company to build houses in a really timely fashion,” explains David Vandine, of Vandine Construction. “We don’t waste time. There’s something happening every day on our projects, and I think I’m most proud of our attention to detail and the high level of quality we give our clients.” “Every room has beautiful custom cabinetry,” he adds of the build. “The kitchen turned out beautifully, and the whole house was really well-detailed. We’ve been using Heronwood for our cabinetry for a long time now, and we definitely recommend them to our clients first.” “Quality was big for us,” adds Ann-Marie. “We wanted less square footage, and with the lighting, plumbing fixtures, the millwork throughout the home, we wanted to get quality in that. And with Vandine Construction, we were so impressed and happy with how they managed the project. They kept our build on time—which isn’t typical in the industry—and we were continually in the loop during the whole process, which made our first build seem achievable.” Doing the build from scratch, she and Jason were able to approach each decision with a great deal of consideration, in part because they had spent so long planning the build. “We were our own designers in the process, so paint details, trim details, our hardware for the doors, everything was really thought out prior to building,” she explains. “Sticking to the style of design throughout the home was important to us. Making sure everything felt connected to the design. Even with my office, it’s green and then my son’s feature wall right above is green. And my other son’s room is blue, and the media room below it is blue.” “I’ve been dreaming since we started our business 15 years ago that one day we’d be the customers,” she says with a laugh. “And it’s exactly what we need.” This beautiful house is heading to the market, and Brian Danyliw with The Agency will be the listing agent.


102-437 Fitzwilliam Street Old City Quarter, Nanaimo shop online at @hoxton.home

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SUPPLIERS: Architect/Design: Pacific West Home Design Interior Design: Heronwood Custom Cabinetry Construction & Interior Finishing: Vandine Construction, Strickland Finishing Carpentry Interior Drywall: Gordon n’ Gordon Interiors Painting: Black Sheep Painting Cabinetry and Millwork: Heronwood Custom Cabinetry Flooring: Hardwood Valley Floors; carpet by Jordans Flooring Nanaimo Tiling: City Tile, Cowichan Tiling Doors: Windsor Plywood Windows: Westeck Windows Lighting: Mclaren Lighting Plumbing Fixtures: Splashes Bath and Kitchen, EMCO Countertops: Flo Form Woodstove: South Island Fireplace Fireplace Hearth/Stonework: Raven Stoneworks Appliances: Coast Appliances Exterior Siding: Joneson Siding and Soffits

Both One And Many. In the Odin® Kitchen Collection by Brizo®, a singular aesthetic finds manifold expression. The streamlined silhouette takes on new distinction with each finish, handle and spout configuration. Embodying both unity and diversity, the collection represents an exquisite multiplicity.

kitchen & bath fixtures



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business class

Tara Anderson.

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Budget Blinds business owners hit ground running to meet growing demand WORDS SEAN MCINTYRE


lasting lesson from the pandemic is the realization of just how important essential service providers are to our broader economy and individual lives. My dad advised relentlessly on the importance of finding a job in a “recession-proof ” sector, and the pandemic era has most definitely highlighted the resilience of jobs in health care, public safety and the grocery store sector, among others. Similar parallels can be drawn in the homebuilding and improvement sector. Not everyone needs or wants an in-home entertainment room with luxury recliners, and heated floors and towel racks aren’t necessarily the right fit for everyone. Nice to have? Definitely, but luxury items will always be overshadowed by basic necessities. This key business principle is well appreciated by Tara Anderson, co-owner of Budget Blinds’ three Vancouver Island locations. “As soon as the sun comes, people start calling us,” Tara says during an interview from her company’s headquarters in the Cowichan Valley. “Everybody is always going to need window coverings.” Even if you live in a rural or remote property, far from the prying eyes of passersby and nosy neighbours, a properly sized and attractive set of household blinds is important. The proper design sets the right tone for your living space, helps control light levels and can reduce room heat on long summer days. So much of a room’s allure is based on the lighting it receives, how that light is filtered, or how it’s diverted. Painting a room or selecting new furniture can set the right tone, but don’t offer the same flexibility that proper window coverings can provide. Likewise, lighting options can conjure a cosy look but often involve complex and costly electrical installations. With the right window covering, Tara says, you can instantly create privacy, control how much light fills the room and generally improve the look and feel of your living space. All with the flick of a wrist. Tara and co-owner David Anderson have owned and operated Budget Blinds locations in the Cowichan Valley and Nanaimo


since 2016, expanding to the Ladysmith location in 2018. The business partners had owned and operated two Budget Blinds franchises in the Lower Mainland prior to their move to the island, eventually selling them in 2021 to focus on the Vancouver Island operations. Looking back over the past five years, Tara says, nobody could have predicted the dramatic changes the island region has encountered since she and her family arrived here from the Lower Mainland. The island’s real estate market has experienced an unprecedented boom as prices for existing properties steadily rise and new builds of all shapes and sizes are ongoing to satisfy the flow of newcomers to the region. The pandemic also had house-bound people staring longingly through their windows at the outdoors. While awaiting an easing of lockdown restrictions, Tara says, many islanders took the opportunity to update and upgrade their living spaces, and window coverings were a popular choice for home improvement projects. “We’ve been booming through COVID,” she says. “People weren’t travelling, but they were realizing what projects needed to be done—and here we are,” she says. “I think most noticeable here [since I moved to the island in 2016] is how much building there has been. We haven’t seen any slowing down and we really appreciate that. For us, we have been very fortunate to have cornered a lot of the builders’ market.” The company’s success goes beyond favourable market conditions. Early on, Tara made a commitment to hit the ground running as a way to introduce herself to her neighbours while spreading word about Budget Blinds. There were Rotary meetings, youth soccer matches, charity golf tournaments, food festivals and so many other mornings, afternoons and evenings devoted to creating the kind of face-to-face relationship that makes or breaks a locally owned, small business. She streamlined the company’s image and strove to make it a household name in homes from the Cowichan Valley to the Comox Valley and beyond. “It really is grassroots marketing because it is the ground-level |

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“It really is grassroots marketing because it is the ground-level stuff that gets you going, and that’s what we’ve been doing for the first four or five years …we were out there, feet to the pavement, knocking on doors, doing door hangers and doing all these things to make ourselves seen and known. And it does help.”

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stuff that gets you going, and that’s what we’ve been doing for the first four or five years. Marketing is expensive and, until we were able to afford the type of marketing that’s required, we were out there, feet to the pavement, knocking on doors, doing door hangers and doing all these things to make ourselves seen and known. And it does help.” Tara says having a local connection is something many people overlook when considering purchasing more generic, mass-produced items from larger stores. Having someone with you who can walk you through the various options related to blinds, shades, shutters and drapes can be a massive help to make decisions a whole lot easier. When a Budget Blinds consultant meets with a client online or in person at their home or office, they discuss details of a given project, sort out the vision and outline what’s possible within a specific budget. When a general plan is created, the consultant whips out the measuring tape to size up the scene before delivering a digital quote on the spot that covers everything from shipping and delivery to installation. “There’s a much bigger selection than people think. Everyone comes in and does the, ‘Oh, it’s just blinds,’” Tara says. “When people are thinking about aesthetics in their home, we do drapery and shutters. It’s not just faux-wood blinds that you slap up. There are many people whose window coverings are part of their decor, and we want to help build that room for them as designers who can help along the way.”

Fashion for Guys on the Move, Qualicum Beach

World Class Couture Brands for Men 138 West Second Ave., Qualicum Beach In the QB Downtown Shopping District


Livin La Vida Local in Downtown Duncan. It’s crazy good here.


hop, sip, and enjoy your way through Downtown Duncan this summer. With a unique and exciting blend of restaurants, cafes, clothing boutiques, gift shops, and more you are sure to find something special in our special slice of paradise! Downtown Duncan is walkable and inviting with a delightful variety of stores and businesses all nestled together in the heart of the Cowichan Valley. In the summertime, locals and visitors alike head downtown to relax in the Station Street Common Park, listen to live music at the 39 Days of July festival, and shop for artisan goodies at the Duncan Farmers Market (on Saturdays).

Consider yourself a foodie? Pho, sushi, bagels, and brisket poutine are all in a three-block radius. Is your mouth watering yet? Treat yourself to hand-made chocolate, freshly baked croissants, and craft beer. For the homebody with a culinary flair, there are a handful of shops fully stocked with kitchen gadgets, pots and paraphernalia to whip up the home-cooked feast of your dreams. Come hungry and leave satiated or inspired for your next tasty adventure! What is on the calendar for Summer events? The Downtown Duncan Business Improvement Area will be hosting the long-awaited return of Duncan Day! This year’s event will take place on July 9th from 10 am to 3 pm in Downtown Duncan, and features an abundance of fun activities and entertainment for the whole family. Snap a commemorative photo at the interactive photo booth, scale a climbing wall, or play a life-sized game of Hungry Hippos – all totally free. At 11 o’clock check out the parade, brought to you by the Duncan Cowichan Festival Society. We are very excited to be able to bring this event back for 2022, and look forward to seeing everyone, and hopefully many new faces.

or @downtown.duncan on Instagram Three Sisters photography

LITTLE BIRD We are proud to feature beautiful creations from a selection of local Indigenous artists & makers! High quality art cards, jewellery, wall décor & useful gifts @ Little BIrd 163 + 165 Station Street, Downtown Duncan Open Mon - Sat 10 - 5 | 250-748-6861


POTS & PARAPHERNALIA Summer with friends! …everything for entertaining! 863 Canada Ave, Duncan | 250-748-4614


Small grocery store offering zero waste pantry staples, fresh produce, organic dairy, local meat and other grocery essentials, as well as a line of homemade frozen meals, soups and desserts.

Carefully selects one of a kind vintage pieces and quality used furnishings throughout the shop. If you’re searching for a statement piece for your home, you’ll likely find it here.

Mon-Fri 10am-5pm & Sat 10am-3pm 360 Duncan Street, Duncan | 250 748 8506

Open Mon - Sat 10am-5pm & Sun 12pm-4pm 250-746-3631 55 Lois Lane, Duncan


WILD Head west this season along the covered-wagon trail as fashion gives a nod to “Little House on the Prairie,” with puffed sleeves and full skirts. Hop on the stagecoach as we head back in time to The Hatching Post’s old-time saloon on Kelowna’s wild west side. PHOTOGRAPHY: DARREN HULL STYLING: SARAH D’ARCEY CREATIVE DIRECTION: LIA CROWE


Ulla Johnson Nerida Embroidered Ruffle Cotton Dress, $774, and Sea Vienne Long Sleeve Eyelet Lace Cotton Blouse, $384, both from Nordstrom Canada; Ariat Women’s Heritage Lacer Boots, $209; vintage gloves and hat, stylist’s own.

Sea Ida Flora Cotton Dress, $585, from Nordstrom Canada; Ariat Round Toe Western Boots, $335.

Costarellos White Maxi Dress, $789, from Turnabout Luxury Resale.

Brixton Joanna Felted Wool Fedora, $80, Simone Rocha Long Sleeve Cotton Shirtdress, $2,410, and Simone Rocha Broderie Anglaise Cotton Shorts, $1,295, all from Nordstrom Canada; Ariat Women’s Heritage Lacer Boots, $209.

Brixton Joanna Felted Wool Fedora, $80, and MUGLER Cutout Gabardine Trench Coat, $3270, both from Nordstrom Canada; Costarellos White Maxi Dress, $789, from Turnabout Luxury Resale.

Simone Rocha Floral Tiered Egg Dress, $2,885, from Nordstrom Canada; Ariat Women’s Heritage Lacer Boots, $209.

Makeup: Jenny McKinney. Model: Nadia de Vos, represented by Déjà Vu Model Management. Photographed on location at The Hatching Post Saloon and Smokery.

Get your brain in gear Brain clinics, qEEG brain mapping and TMS are catchwords of a new focus on brain health WORDS JANE ZATYLNY

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Brain health relies on three pillars: healthy biology through positive sleep and nutritional habits, a positive social environment, and a sense of purpose.


he human brain is the original information superhighway. And like the electronic networks that control so much of our lives, it is unimaginably complex, with overpasses and off ramps, service roads and four-lane freeways, country laneways and congested city streets. Without a road map, we can easily lose our way. Many of us know only too well what a loss of cognitive function can mean. I watched my own mother struggle with dementia following her stroke at age 72. If possible, I hope to avoid the same condition. Given the number of apps, cookbooks and supplements that promise to improve our memory and attention span, I know I’m not alone. According to Psych Central, an independent mental health information and news website, mental health will continue to be a top health trend in 2022 as we move through the third year of the pandemic. “A recent poll by the American Psychiatric Association showed that one-quarter of Americans made a new year’s resolution to improve their mental health in 2022,” they note. The trend, which has been fuelled by the athletes, celebrities, and various public figures who discussed their challenges with mental health over the last year, is leading to a growing interest around brain health. Techniques such as transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) and qEEG brain mapping are gaining momentum, along with the private brain clinics that offer them. What exactly is brain health? A report published last year in The Lancet Neurology proposed a definition of brain health in adults as “a state of complete physical, mental and social wellbeing through the continuous development and exercise of the brain.” “People are realizing that mind and body are very much connected,” explains Dr. Kourosh Edalati, psychiatrist and

TAKE IT ALL IN. From farm-to-table goodness in our Restaurant & Patio, to wine and charcuterie in our Tasting Room & Terrace, summer pairs well with Unsworth Vineyards.


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SIZES XS-XXL, 0-18 250 746 0001 103-80 Station Street Duncan

medical director of Elumind Centres for Brain Excellence, a private outpatient brain health centre in North Vancouver. “We are outgrowing the stigma surrounding mental health…Look at tennis star Naomi Osaka. She courageously talked about her mental health struggles and everyone applauded her.” He adds: “This realization allows us to bring mental health, which was in the background before, to the forefront, without feeling judged.” Brain health relies on three pillars: healthy biology through positive sleep and nutritional habits, a positive social environment, and a sense of purpose. Interestingly, the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated our need for physical, psychological and social well-being, intensifying the interest in brain health. “The pandemic slowed everything down,” explains Kourosh. “It forced us to be much more reflective. Everyone really looked at their priorities and their real purpose of life while they were isolating.”

THE MIND-BODY CONNECTION S hop, Di ne a nd V is i t Dow ntow n La dys mi th A beautiful experience any

time of the year .

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Kourosh, a long-time practitioner of meditation, was first exposed to benefits of the mind-body connection when he was a young immunology student at McGill University. He noticed that certain foods had a major impact on his immune system, not only helping him fend off illness but also calming his mind. “People around me nicknamed me the ‘Zen dude,’” he says. After observing the connection between the domains of biology, psychology, spiritual beliefs and social networks, the psychiatry graduate from the University of British Columbia decided that a more comprehensive approach to healing the brain and the body was needed. In 2019, he opened his clinic, where he offers an integrated approach to brain health.

QEEG BRAIN MAPPING “When I discovered qEEG (quantitative electroencephalogram) brain mapping a few years ago, I saw the connection between biology and psychology beautifully displayed,” says Kourosh. qEEG brain mapping adds a quantitative dimension to an electroencephalogram (EEG) test. It painlessly captures electrical activity in the brain using small, metal discs (sensors) attached to a cap worn by the patient, then clinicians measure brainwaves and compare them against a database of conventionally functioning or “neurotypical” brains. “When we do a qEEG map, we can relate biological processes to the brain’s electrical activity and display the relationship between the psychology and the biology, or lack thereof,” explains Kourosh. “qEEG brain mapping is a very objective process of showing areas of strength and deficiency.” qEEG brain mapping is just one of the services offered at Elumind clinic, where visits begin with a complete therapeutic assessment. “We take an integrated approach with the assessment,” says Kourosh. “We look at every aspect of mental health including the spiritual aspect, make recommendations and then go with our patients’ preferences for treatment.”

Choose the MEWS boutique shopping and dining experience

Dream Homes are our Business

General Contracting Custom Homes | Renovations

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La Stella Trattoria Mobile Cellutions Electric Umbrella • Bistro Taiyo Old City Quarter Law B. Clotheswise Uniforms Aura Arcana Well Being Co. Mad about Ewe • Real Foods

5-6092 Scott Road, Duncan | 250-597-1190 321 Wesley Street |

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TMS is a targeted non-invasive treatment with very few adverse effects that allows us to get to the areas that need better blood flow. TMS (TRANSCRANIAL MAGNETIC STIMULATION)

3392 Norwell Drive, Nanaimo 250 585 1648

During this Health Canada-approved procedure, an electromagnetic coil is placed against the scalp in the forehead region, where it painlessly delivers a magnetic pulse. This pulse is believed to stimulate or inhibit nerve cells in the region of your brain involved in mood, pain and cognitive control. TMS treatments for depression, for example, are typically administered over a six-week period, in five 10- to 40-minute weekday sessions. The cost, which is not yet covered by BC’s Medical Services Plan, is $220 per session for 30 sessions and includes the qEEG brain mapping. “TMS is a targeted non-invasive treatment with very few adverse effects that allows us to get to the areas that need better blood flow,” says Kourosh. “This allows better regulation of neurotransmitter chemicals in that region through neuroplasticity and really alleviates the symptoms the patient may be experiencing.” While the clinic treats patients of all ages except the very young, Kourosh says that the baby-boomer generation has been the most impacted by the lifting of the stigma surrounding mental health. “I now see baby boomer parents supporting young clients to come get help. It’s very refreshing.” He congratulates those who search for ways to improve their mental and brain health, noting, “It’s a courageous journey, but a journey that has absolute wonders embedded in it.” Wherever you may be on your own journey, brain mapping, TMS and other mental health-related services may help you better navigate your neural superhighway.

CHOOSING A BRAIN HEALTH CLINIC A reputable clinic should have a psychiatrist or clinical neuropsychologist on staff to interpret the results of patient assessments and testing. “Many diagnoses share the same symptoms, so interpretation requires a trained eye,” says Kourosh. “For example, anxiety can look like depression, trauma can look like insomnia, and side effects of medication can present as ADHD or other mental focus issues.” A psychiatrist can also clarify what (if any) medications could be useful for treatment, or in some cases eliminate the need for medication altogether by identifying possible therapeutic interventions that will specifically address the presenting issue successfully, he adds. 56 |


The Influencers Meet some of Central Vancouver Island’s top entrepreneurs as they describe the colour of their world and their dreams for the future. Boulevard presents: The Influencers Photos by Lia Crowe and Don Denton Words by Angela Cowan Shot on location at Yellow Point Lodge


hat better place to express the bright and colourful vibrancy of Central Island’s business leaders than set against the beautiful backdrop of Yellow Point Lodge in Ladysmith? The man who founded the lodge, M.G. Hill, wanted his guests to be able to escape urban pressures; he believed Mother Nature is the best landscape architect. The feeling around the property is rustic and natural, and only a small portion of it is developed. Also at the lodge, you’ll find rustic but elegant rooms, activities like biking and kayaking, as well as food options. The splendour of nature at the lodge provided a perfect backdrop for the dynamic business leaders of this area as we asked them to dwell on colour and dreams.

Our world is blue.

Kristen and Karlin Russell Blue will always be our favourite colour. It’s timeless, classic and elegant. We love to wear it and use it in our home. We often remind one another to look out and up—to see the sea and sky surrounding us. Our dream for the next year is to continue connecting with our loyal and supportive community. We are excitedly anticipating the arrival of Kristen’s baby this summer, so this trumps everything to be honest! Owners,

Bayside Goods /

My world is green.

Tamara Passmore Being a business owner and fashion influencer, colour plays a huge role in my life. Green evokes hope and renewal, which are essential aspirations for me as I grow my business. Hope and renewal are also much needed in today’s world, as is a greener world for humankind. Today, the gentle greens of spring announce the promise of the panoply of summer to come: summer colours, summer fabrics, summer weddings. What’s not to love?! Owner, Wear It’s At Boutique /

My world is blue.

Julia House My favourite colour is blue—all shades of blue. It’s just so soothing, whether it’s in my wardrobe or home décor or as the colour for my store. I hope that the next year brings more compassion, kindness and peace for one another. Our world seems so divisive lately, but at the end of the day we are still all just human beings trying our best through unprecedented times. Owner + Founder,

Maison Cookware + Bakeware /

My world is a kaleidoscope of colour.

Carla Samson At Quintessential we see the world through a kaleidoscope of colour! For 17 years we’ve been part of the vibrant and unique Nanaimo downtown core. We’ve evolved into a beautiful boutique serving women of all ages, and now we’ve even expanded to have a tiny bit of home décor, bath and baby products. Our future entails building a wider cross-country audience through our online store and maintaining great service to all our loyal customers. Owner, Quintessential /

My world is dark blue.

My world is a rainbow.

My world is multi-coloured.

Paul Papastavros

Michelle Norris

Paula Pilcher

With all the current events globally, my wish for the next year is peace, safety, prosperity and happiness for all.

A rainbow shows my personality when I’m happy, sad, angry, suffering, crying and having fun. My dream for the next year is to continue making great relationships with my customers and like-minded business owners in my community. Working with businesses to help them grow—and grow yourself—is the best feeling. Everyone wins.

Green represents the outdoors and nature, purple for personal power, red for unconditional love and blue for expansive horizons and unlimited possibilities. My dream for the next year is to grow my networking circle within the Oceanside and Nanaimo communities and to continue towards success and prosperity.

Style Consultants, Budget Blinds / Makeup and hair by Heather Nightingale, using MisMacK Clean Cosmetics Victoria.

My world is ocean blue-green.

Ruth Warkentin I am regenerated when I can watch the breaking waves of thwe ocean and I love to meditate on that deeply calming colour. My hope for the next year is to realize my 20-year dream of custom printing my own fabric designs in house. Owner & Principal Designer,

Studio 1867 Design /

My world is the colour of emotion painted across canvas.

Pipi Tustian Each colour holds emotional energy, and when paired with another they become compellingly spirited, creating interest and attention in a powerfully irresistible way. My dream for the next year is to continue to grow, create and collaborate. While still in development, I am most excited to have my printed fabric and wallpaper collection ready for market. Artist /Teacher, Pipi Original Art For Everyday Living / 250.715.6962

Our world is green and blue.

Cheri and Brianne Mactier Our world is green and blue, depicting the magnificent ocean, mountains and forest that surround us. We are grateful to live in of the most beautiful nature spots in the world. Our dream for the next year is helping people experience the happy trails of life on Vancouver Island by making their real estate dreams come true. Love where you live! Real Estate Agents, Mactier Real Estate Group, EXP Realty

My world is turquoise.

Mike Hrabowych Geographically, turquoise represents the West Coast with its blue oceans and lakes and lush green forests (and golf courses!). Symbolically, it represents my values: blue for stability, trustworthiness and loyalty; green for health, wealth and growth. My dream for this year is to find balance between my professional and personal lives, to continue helping individuals, families and businesses with their financial needs while making time to spend with loved ones, and to recharge. Wealth Manager

My world is green.

Aislinn Bissenden The past couple years have been a struggle in almost every way and many of us are emerging with fresh perspective and appreciation. Green is associated with vitality, calm and regeneration. Being in nature is where I go to recharge and find peace. In 2022 I want to continue to help women build confidence and take control of their financial futures by providing education and support around investing. Wealth Manager

My world is blue.

Daniel Martinez Blue is often related to conservative, secure, stable and reliable and—I believe—these words describe me as an individual and the way I approach business. My dream for the rest of the year is for the world to turn more blue! I’m very much looking forward to blue skies in the spring and summer with the hopes that a secure and stable world is ahead for everyone. Wealth Manager

My world is silver.

Andre Sullivan For me, the colour of the year is silver, symbolizing metal of all types. As we move towards more electric vehicles, batteries and the necessary upgrades to our electrical systems, we are going to require much more, and all types of metal. Wealth Manager

My world is blue.

Alena Rankin My happy place is the ocean; it’s where I find peace amid the hustle and bustle of everyday life. My dream for the next year is to focus on all the positives in life among all the negative narratives in the world, and to help others try to do the same. Associate Investment Advisor

Integral Wealth Securities Limited–Member CIPF

My world is every shade of blue.

Miles Anderson From navy to baby and every shade in between, the world of fashion is an illustration of the colour blue because it looks absolutely great on every guy! It goes so well with all skin tones and it’s so versatile. My biggest dream for the next year is to once again travel internationally. With restrictions hopefully behind us, my wife and I are gearing up to see some more of the planet we call home! Owner/Operator, Outlooks Menswear Duncan Ltd.

Our world is green.

Evelyn Koops and George Gates We own a farm, restaurant, bed and breakfast and farm store where we provide as many local and farm-to-table items as possible, either from our garden and farm, or through local producers and partners. Our business is also our home and we are blessed to be surrounded by nature and greenery. Our dream for the next year would be to slow down and enjoy our beautiful property more. Small Business Owners, Farm Table Inn /

My world is green.

My world is purple.

My world is bright pink.

Donna Shaw

Colleen Manuel

Emily Lore

As a mother of two with a passion for sustainable forestry practices and a hobby farm, green is the colour I live in. Green for growth and green for environmental stewardship. Educating the world on the value of a single tree is my purpose. My dream for the next year is to thrive in life and work and help others around me flourish.

Purple is my powerhouse colour. It represents bravery, independence and balance, all things one needs to be a success in this world. Purple drives my passion for life. My desire for the year ahead is to continue helping my clients build and create their dream furniture pieces while finding time for balance and serenity in life.

Feminine, attractive, vibrant. Pink embodies the essence of new beginnings and hope, and the relationship between strength and femininity. Pink is my happy colour; it makes me feel creative. My goal for the next year is to grow professionally and personally while inspiring other women to pursue their dreams and become more self-confident and powerful.

Chief Marketing and Sales Officer

Sales Manager

Design Associate.

Live Edge Design Inc. /

My world is yellow.

Brad Leith Yellow has always been my favourite colour. It evokes light, laughter and spontaneity! The last several years have been difficult for all of us and, as we emerge from them, I’ve been designing and creating jewellery that captures the hope and optimism of spring’s yellow flowers as they bring laughter, good times and a huge sigh of relief. Chief Designer,

Impeccable Jewellery /

My world is red.

Jada Forrest Red brings excitement and energy and is historically symbolic of representing passion. I’m passionate and excited about real estate and how my company is represented in Lake Cowichan. We believe that giving back to our community is equally as important as representing it and welcoming newcomers. Over the next year, I would like to incorporate my passion for design into my real estate services by helping clients prepare and stage their homes for the market. Owner/Realtor,

Countrywide Village Realty Ltd. /

My world is yellow.

My world is turquoise.

My world is blue.

Kyla Decker

Dr. Lucie Gijzen

Dr. Robert Decker

Yellow is sunshine and warmth, and it brightens life. The past couple of years have reminded us that being positive and enjoying the special moments are most important. I hope to continue to bring that same feeling of happiness and joy to my friends, family and clients.

Turquoise reminds me of the sea, which is where I feel the happiest as it is peaceful and calm, and brings back many childhood memories of swimming and enjoying being in the water for hours! In the next year, I wish to continue helping clients achieve their aesthetic goals. Personally, I hope to continue to work on my health and fitness goals, and enjoy quality time with my family and friends.

Blue signifies trust, honesty and loyalty—three things that I value in my personal and professional life. As a pilot, I am happy in the skies. This has been a challenging couple of years for many and having compassion and care for clients has been and will continue to be my priority.

Clinical Director


Renu Laser & Skin Care /

Medical Director

My world is white.

Ann-Marie Fifield I just adore white in design, but I also love it because it’s fresh and exciting. It’s a blank slate that allows for endless possibilities. My dream for the next year is that our clients continue to gather and connect in the beautiful kitchens and homes we’ve helped create. The kitchen is the heart of the home and seeing our clients create new memories in these spaces reaffirms our business is on the right path. My world is blue.

Jason Fifield I love fishing and being on the water. My family and I are so lucky to live where we do. I dream that our family and employees have the space and ability to make time for nature and enjoy all that Vancouver Island offers. I want us all to feel empowered to take the time we need to strike a healthy work/life balance, which allows us to create great work when we’re on the job. Owners, Heronwood Custom Cabinetry Inc.

My world is red.

Tracy Arden I love the colour red! To me, it’s optimistic and bold. My dream for the next year is to hang out in my store and sew beautiful one-of-a-kind designs in gorgeous, sustainable fabrics! Owner, Redefined Clothing Boutique

My world is black.

Julie Hazelwood Black is required to provide all colours with depth and variation in hue. In comparison, an individual can put limitations on their perspective when depth is lacking in their reality. I seek to understand the perspective of my team so I can empower them to achieve their goals. Director of Operations, Fairwinds /

My world is yellow.

Lauren Cartmel Yellow is something I see a lot with the perfect lemon tart, quiche custards, omelettes and our bright yellow espresso machine steaming those perfect lattes. Our dream for the next year is for our busy little restaurant to continue on its successful path, bringing in new faces to try our specialties and check out our beautiful garden patio while the sun is shining and the flowers blooming. Owner, Ma Maison /

My world is black.

Josh Cole Black is the complete absorption of all colour and light. In film we use black to control how the colour looks, and unlike white— which reflects and pushes away colour—black attracts all the colours like a big hug. So in other words, he who loves black loves all colour. My dream for the next year is very simple: for all my friends and family to be safe, healthy and happy. Owner, The Wickertree /

food and feast

Miso Glazed Salmon Brain Bowls.

i Nourish your noggin Ingenious ingredients to create food for the brain WORDS ELLIE SHORTT



t’s 10 am. You’re staring at a computer screen seemingly floating in and out of consciousness as you struggle to type out another report and send off another email. Why won’t the words come to you? Why does your mind keep going blank? Why is your memory failing and your thoughts escaping? You think back to your breakfast of an unremarkable pastry and sour coffee from the anonymous café in the lobby of your office building and wonder, “Could that be contributing to this baffling brain fog?” Endless research, thousands of scientific papers and a seeming consensus across wellness approaches, cultural perspectives and ancestral practices say a resounding yes! Long have traditional communities recognized the power of food for body, mind and spirit, and now western scientific approaches are beginning to catch up with some impressive studies that would humble even the most skeptical naysayers. Specifically, researchers are finding that foods rich in antioxidants and healthy fats, as well as certain vitamins and minerals (vitamin K, folate, and iron, to name a few), provide your brain with energy and aid in protecting brain cells, which may ward off the potential development of certain brain diseases. Equally as important, a well-functioning digestive system is seemingly essential for cognitive health, whereby a number of hormones and neurotransmitters are created in the gut and are then able to enter the brain, which influences things like memory and concentration. With research in areas of chronic and systemic inflammation growing, scientists keep finding evidence to prove that highly processed diets rich in pro-inflammatory omega-6 fatty acids release inflammatory cytokines, which can ultimately damage the brain when in excess, and have been linked to a number of mental and cognitive conditions, including dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. And now you might be wondering, “That’s great and all, but what does all that mean for my day-to-day dietary choices?” Well, if you’re wanting to translate all this biology classroom jargon into a grocery list, I’ve provided a list of some (of many) cognitively friendly foods. I’ve also included three of my personal go-tos for meal time, snack time and drink time, when it comes to brain-boosting deliciousness. |

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Researchers are finding that foods rich in antioxidants and healthy fats, as well as certain vitamins and minerals… provide your brain with energy and aid in protecting brain cells, which may ward off the potential development of certain brain diseases. But before I get into the details, I should take this opportunity to once again remind readers that I am a certified Nutritional Therapy Practitioner and have worked with dozens of clients in clinical practice. I remind anyone needing to hear this that when talking about nourishing foods, it’s imperative to avoid a discourse of guilt, judgment or shame regarding food choices. Similarly, it’s arguably unwise to think of certain ingredients as magical cure-alls for an illness or disease. If you’re wanting to work on something specific when it comes to your diet and wellness, I encourage you to reach out to a certified or licensed professional, understanding that every

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body is different and will require different approaches and paces. With that said, incorporating some of the following foods and recipes rotationally into your routine is certainly not a bad place to start if you’re looking for a happier body and healthier brain. And even if you’re not, at the very least they’ll please your taste buds, as all edible delights should in my humble (and professional) opinion. So with that said, have a look at the following, maybe even try your hand at the recipes on offer, and as you do, take a moment to consider how remarkable these gifts from nature are in all their delicious complexity and yummy nourishment.



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Not only does salmon offer a major hit of protein, which is essential for optimal cognitive function, omega-3-rich foods like salmon have also been shown to increase the efficiency of various brain operations, including improved memory, while also reducing systemic inflammation. In fact, some preliminary studies even suggest that long-term omega-3 supplementation can help prevent and treat Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s symptoms, both of which have been linked to chronic inflammatory damage.


Eggs, in particular the yolks, not only provide your protein-hungry brain with high-quality, easily assimilated protein, they also contain almost unparalleled levels of carotenoids, a type of antioxidant compound that can help protect against oxidative damage to brain cells.


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This nutrient-dense ancient grain is packed with polyphenols, which are disease-fighting antioxidants. Rutin, one antioxidant found within buckwheat, in particular has proven promising in recent studies regarding Alzheimer’s prevention and treatment. Buckwheat is also an easily digestible complex carbohydrate that is also gluten free. With increasing correlations between brain fog and gluten, many folks seeking a healthier brain often benefit from avoiding or reducing gluten in their diet.


Containing both vitamin K and folate, avocados may help prevent blood clots in the brain (protecting against stroke), and help improve brain functions related to memory and concentration. The healthy fats contained within avocado are also some of the brain’s most favoured forms of fuel.


Beets are some of the most nutritious foods for the brain that you can eat; they help reduce inflammation, are high in cancer-protecting antioxidants, and help rid your blood of toxins (which can collect in the brain). The natural nitrates in beets actually boost blood flow to the brain, helping with mental performance.

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Along with other cruciferous vegetables like cauliflower, kale and Brussels sprouts, broccoli is one of the best brain-healthy foods out there, thanks to its high levels of vitamin K and choline, which can help keep your memory sharp.


Raw high-quality cocoa is full of flavanols, which have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Studies show cocoa can increase cerebral blood flow and cerebral blood oxygenation, plus it can help lower blood pressure and oxidative stress in the brain and heart.

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With their substantial omega-3 levels and decent protein content, walnut benefits for the brain include supporting memory and thought processing, with recent studies suggesting prevention and treatment of conditions like dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.


Preliminary studies of this blue-green algae hold promising results for conditions like Alzheimer’s and dementia, with one study even finding that a spirulina-enhanced diet given to rats provided neuroprotection with regards to Parkinson’s disease. Spirulina is being explored for heavy metal toxicity, which is a potential cause of cognitive decline, memory loss, and mood and personality disturbances.


Rich in omega-3s, packed with protein and full of fibre, chia seeds are great for the brain, the gut and everything in between. Chia seeds may also help in blood sugar management, which is good news for your brain, as blood sugar spikes have been shown to diminish cognitive function, decrease memory and lead to systemic inflammation in the body.


Blueberries have one of the highest antioxidant levels of all known foods, and also contain substantial levels of vitamin C and vitamin K. Blueberries are especially good at protecting our brains from degeneration, cognitive decline and stress due to their high levels of gallic acid.


Research shows that regular green tea consumption helps limit the breakdown of acetylcholine, the neurotransmitter strongly linked with memory, and drinking green tea also inhibits enzymes known as BuChE and beta-secretase, which are found in protein deposits found in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients.


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Miso Glazed Salmon Brain Bowls Prep time: 30 minutes Makes about 2 servings Ingredients 1 package 100% whole buckwheat soba noodles (about 220 grams) 2 medium-large fillets of wild salmon (I used sockeye here) 3 tbsp Shiro miso 3 tbsp pure maple syrup 1 tbsp plum vinegar 1 tsp tamari sauce 3 tbsp fresh lemon juice 2 cloves garlic, peeled 1 large chunk of ginger, peeled (about 1-2 inches’ worth) 2 small-medium beets, peeled and cut into wedges 4 stalks broccolini 1 large bunch spinach, thoroughly rinsed and dried 2 medium boiled (or “6-minute”) eggs ½ cup edamame, peeled (you can purchase frozen and defrost before using) 1 large avocado, peeled and sliced 2 small-medium radishes, trimmed and thinly sliced 1 small cucumber, thinly sliced Extra virgin olive oil (you’ll need about 1 cup, divided throughout) Optional garnish of sesame seeds

Directions Preheat your oven to 400 F and line three baking sheets with parchment paper (one for the salmon, one for the beets and one for the broccolini). Cook the buckwheat soba as per the instructions on the package and set aside. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the Shiro miso, maple syrup, plum vinegar and tamari sauce until smooth, and set aside one quarter to be used for the dressing. Place the salmon in a medium baking dish and coat evenly with the remaining miso sauce. Cover the baking dish and place the salmon in the fridge while it marinades. *Note: this can be done overnight. Take the remaining miso sauce and combine it in a small blender with the lemon juice, garlic, ginger and 6 tbsp olive oil. Blend until smooth and set aside. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, toss the beets with 1 tbsp olive oil and a light sprinkling of salt and pepper. Place them on one of your pre-prepared baking sheets and bake for 30 minutes until soft and tender, turning once or twice as they roast. Once cooked to your liking, set aside.

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Miso Glazed Salmon Brain Bowls.

Meanwhile, place the broccolini on another pre-prepared baking sheet, drizzle with 1 tbsp of olive oil, sprinkling with a pinch of salt and pepper, and bake for 15 minutes until cooked through and slightly crispy, turning once as they roast. Once cooked to your liking, set aside. Once the salmon has been marinating for at least 30 minutes, place the fillets on the third prepared baking sheet and bake for about 15 minutes until the salmon is tender and flaky when pulled apart with a fork (but not over-cooked and dry). Once cooked to your liking, set aside. In a saucepan over medium heat, sauté the spinach with about 1 tbsp olive oil, and a pinch of salt and pepper until soft. Remove from the heat and set aside. When ready to plate, place a large handful of soba noodles into the centre of two medium-sized bowls. On top of the soba, arrange your broccolini (about 2 stalks per bowl), beets (about 4 wedges per bowl), spinach (a small handful per bowl), a few slices of cucumber, a few slices of radish, one egg cut in half, about a quarter cup of edamame, and a salmon fillet. Drizzle with a generous serving of the miso-ginger dressing and garnish with a sprinkling of sesame seeds (serve at room temperature or cold).

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Coco Spirulina Brain Bars Cook time: about 10 minutes, plus overnight setting time Makes about 16 bars Ingredients 2 loose cups soft, pitted dates ½ cup unsweetened plant-based milk ½ cup almond butter ½ cup coconut oil, melted 2 tsp pure vanilla extract ¼ cup collagen powder 1 ⁄3 cup raw cocoa powder 3 tbsp spirulina powder 2 tbsp chia seeds 1 tbsp cinnamon ¼ tsp sea salt 2 cups old fashioned rolled oats ½ raw walnut pieces ½ cup dried goji berries Directions Grease a 9-inch square pan with a small amount of coconut oil and line with an overhanging strip of parchment paper for easy removal. In a high-powered food processor, blend the dates, milk, almond butter, coconut oil and vanilla until smooth. Add the collagen, spirulina, cocoa, salt and cinnamon and blend until fully integrated. Blend in the chia seeds and oats until well combined. Pulse in the walnuts and gojis until well integrated.





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Coco Spirulina Brain Bars.

Transfer the mixture to your prepared pan, and flatten and smooth down the top with your palm. Allow it to set in the fridge overnight, then carefully remove from the pan (I like to loosen the sides with a dull knife, and then flip it upside down onto a cutting board), peel back the parchment paper and cut into squares. Store in fridge or freezer in an airtight container.

Blueberry Ginger Brain-Aid Cook time: About 30 minutes Makes about 3 ½ cups of mixture that can be diluted with still or sparkling water to your flavour preference Ingredients 1 ⁄3 cup raw honey ¼ cup high-quality green tea leaves Large piece ginger (about 2 inches), peeled and sliced 1 cup fresh blueberries ½ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice Water (both boiling and cold) Directions In a small saucepan, combine the honey, 1 cup water and ginger slices. Bring to a boil and then turn immediately down to a simmer, letting it steep for about 20 minutes. Place the blueberries and one half cup of water in a blender. Blend on medium-high speed for about 1 minute, until the blueberries are completely pureed (it might be a bit jelly-like—don’t worry, this is normal). Steep the green tea in 1 cup of boiling water for 3 minutes (*do not over-steep!). Combine the steeped green tea, honey ginger water and blended blueberries in a large jug or container. Add in the lemon juice and then strain the entire mixture through a fine mesh sieve into another jug or container. Store the mixture in the fridge, pour over ice, and top up with still or sparkling water to your liking.

Blueberry Ginger Brain-Aid.

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Walks and wine in Madeira A visit to the world’s top island destination BY SUZANNE MORPHET



For seven years running, it has beat out higher-profile islands like Hawaii, Fiji and Seychelles in the World Travel Awards, considered the “Oscars of tourism” by the travel industry.


f all the islands in the world, who would have guessed that tiny Madeira, best known for its fortified sweet wine, would become the world’s leading island destination? Yet for seven years running, it has beat out higher-profile islands like Hawaii, Fiji and Seychelles in the World Travel Awards, considered the “Oscars of tourism” by the travel industry. About two hours by plane from Lisbon (Madeira is an autonomous region of Portugal), this volcanic island in the Atlantic doesn’t even have natural sand beaches. So what’s the draw? Partly, it’s the other natural assets—mountains, forests and sea. And partly, it’s because Madeirans have (to borrow from the French) the savoir faire to look after their guests. As they should; they’ve been welcoming tourists for almost 300 years. European visitors first came in the mid-18th century to be cured of tuberculosis while convalescing in the island’s sub-tropical climate. Soon, writers and aristocrats, poets and politicians followed, relaxing in stylish hotels such as Reid’s Palace, where Winston Churchill wrote his memoirs and George Bernard Shaw learned to tango. Even during the pandemic, tourism has continued to evolve, with younger, more active visitors arriving, attracted by outdoor adventures from canyoning (exploring canyons by rappelling and jumping) and coasteering (traversing a rocky coastline by swimming and jumping), to mountain biking and surfing.


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What grabbed my attention when I visited were the almost unparalleled opportunities for walking. First, there are the levadas. These are stone channels built by hand beginning in the 15th century to transfer water from the wet side of the island to the dry side. This vast network is still used today and running alongside each of them are footpaths open to anyone. Then there are other trails that locals created to get around on foot long before roads were built, including shepherd’s trails. “Imagine a big grid over the island,” says Fabio Castro, who traded his desk job to become a certified mountain guide, as we follow a well-trod trail one misty morning. “Trails crisscross it.” Some trails lead hikers to the highest point on the island, Pico Ruivo, at 1,862 metres. Other trails and levadas cut through the Laurisilva—a laurel forest so rare it’s been given UNESCO World Heritage status. The mature, ecologically rich forest is the largest surviving laurel forest in the world. Fabio says there are 5,000 kilometres of trails altogether on Madeira, including 3,400 kilometres along levadas. “You could do 10 days of hiking, staying at different hotels and mountain huts each night,” he adds. My half-day hike with Fabio began along a levada high above a valley dotted with red-tiled houses and terraced farm crops, including sugarcane, once the economic engine of Madeira. Turning off, we follow another trail to a ridge with dizzying dropoffs. The green coastline spreads out before us. Mist swirls and dark clouds gather on the horizon. Far below, waves break against the rocky shoreline. “Smell this,” says Fabio, breaking my nature-induced reverie. “Does this smell like mojitos?” It’s mint, of course, and it thrives in the island’s rich soil, along

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with a Noah’s ark of plants that sailors brought from every corner of the planet during the Age of Discovery. “We have dandelions that look like palm trees,” Fabio laughs after I exclaim over the size of the heathers. Something else that flourishes are grapes, the basis of that famous Madeira wine. A decanter sits on my bedside table at Reid’s Palace, but I didn’t know the story behind it until I went on a walking food and wine tour with Sofia Maul in Funchal, Madeira’s capital. Sofia tells us that winemakers in the late 15th century couldn’t understand why their wine tasted better after it had spent months on ships at sea, often crossing the equator. “At first they thought it was the motion,” and they wanted to duplicate the conditions so they could make it faster and cheaper. “So,” she grins, “you’d have 12 men rocking these barrels backwards and forwards.” When that didn’t work, they tried subjecting the wine to heat and oxygen. Bingo! “And this is why you will never find Madeira wine aging in a cellar,” Sofia smiles as we sip three-year-old medium-dry and sweet wine at Blandy’s Wine Lodge, which is housed in a former Franciscan monastery from the 16th century. “It’s always kept in the warmest rooms in the house.” In the same way tour operators are finding new adventures to keep active guests amused, winemakers are creating new wines. One day we drive to the north coast to Quinta do Barbusano, a winery named for one of the island’s species of laurel trees. Stone walls divide the steep slope into small terraces, where vines grow on overhead trellises. Sheep graze beneath the still-bare branches, eating weeds and fertilizing the vines with their manure. The

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Climbing to one of Madeira’s highest peaks at sunrise is a popular experience. PHOTO COURTESY VISIT MADEIRA

grapes are laboriously picked by hand here, just like everywhere else on the island. Inside the glass-walled tasting room, we sample whites, reds and rosé. “Our soil is volcanic so it’s normal that this composition is transmitted to our wine,” explains our hostess, noting the acidic tones along with the fragrance of apple, pineapple and passion fruit. Later, she suggests a crisp white to wash down our lunch of salty, smoky espetada—beef skewered on laurel branches, then barbecued. After lunch I bask in the sun and admire the extraordinary view. A chapel with a clock tower stands out on a distant hilltop, framed by mountains. It’s a chapel Sofia Maul told us about earlier. “It was built entirely by women,” she had said. “The women promised that if the men came back safe from the First World War, they would build a chapel that could be seen and heard from the whole valley.” Now that I think of it, it’s not so surprising that Madeira has been repeatedly chosen as the world’s leading island. Madeirans, it seems, can do anything they put their minds to. For more information, see 90 |




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Aaron Gray, vice president of La-Z-Boy Vancouver Island, has spent just about his entire life in and around the furniture industry. He recently relocated to Nanaimo to get back to the family business—Aaron’s family has owned and operated Vancouver Island’s La-Z-Boy locations for more than 20 years. “I’m helping [my father] run the day-to-day business here,” says Aaron. “I had a tenure with La-ZBoy, so it was an obvious fit.” “Being centrally located is amazing,” he adds. “You can go to the mountain, you can hop on the ferry to Vancouver, and you’re never far from a hike or a walk. Every month I find something new that I’m into.” After working for La-Z-Boy corporately for the last decade, being back in a role that’s on a more intimate level feels like coming full circle. “I worked in the family business from when I was about 13 to when I was 20, and then I moved to Toronto to try and get away from it,” he says, laughing. He went to school for art and graphic design in his early 20s, but found he kept being pulled back to the furniture industry. “You’re merging everything from industrial design to fashion,” he says. “It’s everything. The build quality of the furniture, the actual wood and the tacks, as well as the fabric and design. It’s a merging of worlds for sure.” He loves the travel, the trade shows, the unique challenges and the melding of form and function. “It’s a fast-paced industry and I thrive on change. And I saw that it put food on my family’s table growing up, so as far as following in my father’s footsteps, I have this love and respect for this industry,” he adds. WORDS ANGELA COWAN

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I worked in the family business from when I was about 13 to when I was 20, and then I moved to Toronto to try and get away from it.


You’re given $1 million that you have to spend selfishly. What would you spend it on?

I have this idea of renting and furnishing a room in an old five-star hotel in Paris: getting room service, throwing parties, drinking nice wine and dining at cafes. In my mind it’s a Wes Anderson movie with a Serge Gainsbourg soundtrack. Just pure escapism. And it would end with the hotel manager politely informing me by folded note that I no longer have credit and need to vacate the room immediately.


Pet peeves?

Baseball hats in restaurants. Why grown men don’t see a problem with this and insist on sitting down to a nice meal with a baseball hat on is beyond me. I’m not a crazy stickler for manners, but this one takes the cake.


The 7 Sins ENVY:

Whose shoes would you like to walk in?

Alex James, the bassist from the British rock group Blur. He lived life in the ’90s unapologetically as a rock star and then retired to a farm in Oxfordshire as a cheesemaker. Both of his lives are incredibly glamorous in their own ways. There’s something about living out a romantic existence as an artisan in the English countryside, making a product you’re passionate about. I would gladly trade my skinny jeans for wool and a pair of wellies.


What is the food you could eat over and over again?

I love eating out and when I travel I base my stops around restaurants I want to try. To choose one food though, it would be anything Italian. It’s a cuisine based on the simplicity and quality of its ingredients.

Where would you spend a long time doing nothing?

My bed. I feel at this stage in my life I’ve gotten to understand the pleasure behind having a nice mattress, perfectly weighted duvet and a solid pillow. Saturday mornings are the best. My girlfriend and I sleep in, drink a pot of coffee and watch English football.


What is the one thing you’re secretly proud of ? A few years ago I restored a 1966 Vespa in a ground-up build. I literally knew nothing about mechanics, and while old Vespas are about as complicated as a lawnmower, it was still a challenge for a guy who didn’t have a clue what a carburetor was.


What makes your heart beat faster?

I’ve played in bands since I was a teenager, and there is nothing that makes me feel more alive than playing a show. It’s nerve-wracking but at the same time full of this allconsuming excitement. Anything can happen: equipment can break, the bar could be empty or packed, pints can fall and fry electrical’s the organized chaos that gets my adrenaline flowing. |

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It wasn’t until years later, when a bat became trapped in our second home and my younger daughter began cooing at it that I realized these little guys are actually adorable—kind of like hamsters with wings.


et me warn you about the term rustic. A “rustic” home may conjure winter scenes of soft-alpaca-sweater-clad couples sipping mulled wine in front of a crackling fireplace, or summertime visions of lazy days spent lounging outdoors on a backyard deck—perhaps the deck is waterworn and slightly haphazard, but still worthy of a photo shoot for Country Cottage. These images are not entirely false, but let’s do a reality check: hours of back-breaking wood splitting and wood stacking will quickly temper a wood-heat love affair; that deck likely needs a visit from a gazillion-dollar-an-hour carpenter, and be damned if all that cosy ambiance doesn’t just make every little creature want to live in that house too. My first house on Salt Spring Island was an early-century log cabin, and it embodied the term rustic. Belying its picturesque exterior were the various creatures that marched in and out of it, depending on the season. These included ants in the spring, hornets in the summer, mice in the winter and periodic bats year-round. We received much advice on ways to evict the hornet tenants. Calling pest control might have been the optimal choice, but we were young and broke and willing to try any suggestion, including dangling a fish head over a jar of water. The the only casualty here was the sweet scent of the room. But one night, when some 20 hornets clustered together for a snooze in the crease between the wall and ceiling, Derrick, my husband of the time, said, “Here’s our chance. We’ll vacuum them up.” The “we’ll” actually meant “he’ll” because I watched the entire exercise from a small crack between the comforter and pillow. As soon as the nozzle hit the cluster, the hornets

spewed outwards and voiced their anger by loudly buzzing around the room. The next scene (observed from my pillow fortress) involved Derrick jumping about, Electrolux nozzle extended. It seemed to work! And while we didn’t usually vacuum the house at midnight, living in a rustic home sometimes called for the unorthodox. (And, honestly, now that I knew the vacuum was a weapon of mass destruction, I couldn’t wait for the flying ants in the spring.) The attic-residing bats in the log cabin only dropped by once in a while, making a distinct soft flapping sound as they fluttered into the bedroom through an open French door, and sending us diving for cover under the duvet. Derrick, who as a youth in the late ‘60s had long curly hair, once had a bat get caught in his thick locks. He was quite terrified of them and he instilled the same fear in me. Hence the ensuing scenes of us hiding under blankets, running about the house opening doors and windows, trying to shoo out the unwelcome bats. (It wasn’t until years later, when a bat became trapped in our second home and my younger daughter began cooing at it that I realized these little guys are actually adorable—kind of like hamsters with wings.) In selecting our second house, we carefully avoided the word rustic. However, on an island of misfit homes—many constructed over several years, with addition built upon addition and where the level of completion depended on how quickly the money ran out—there was bound to be issues. Salt Spring homes that aren’t rustic are likely quirky. This means you might have to walk through one room to get to another; curtains might replace doors on bathrooms; and potholed driveways often rival BMX racing tracks for negotiability. |

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And, honestly, now that I knew the vacuum was a weapon of mass destruction, I couldn’t wait for the flying ants in the spring.

And either way, as homeowners of either rustic or quirky, everyone dreads the arrival of city-dwelling visitors. Once, I was preparing for two visitors from Calgary. Things were going quite well on the clean-up end of things (a bout of insomnia the night before had produced a clean fridge by 4 am), and I even got the sliding bathroom door working. But drama was inevitable. Two days before the two sets of fancy city shoes were set to cross the quirky-country threshold…the bird arrived. Although by this time I’d lived in the house for decades, it was somehow still a surprise every spring when I heard the early-morning thunk on the guest bedroom window. Reflective glass drew at least one randy bird each year, and upon seeing its reflection, it struck the window with force and then happily bounced up and down the length of it for a loud half hour or more. This early bird rose with the sun—arriving about 10 minutes earlier each morning—until its cheery crash hit at 5 am and resonated throughout the house. It was preferable, I guess, to the woodpecker, which for several mornings one year, mistook the gutter outside our bedroom for a tree trunk. But my current husband Bruce’s favourite time of the year was the annual march of the ants, which started in the early spring with a regiment of tiny sugar ants and moved into an army of larger black ants. As explained by one of my friends, who lived in a rustic and quirky home and knew about such things, the ants merely come and then they go; they are on the move and the house just happens to be in the way. The march of the ants took place for just a few days, but Bruce’s aversion to anything that crawls is strong enough to be amusing, so at least there was that. And, of course, when all else failed, there was always the vacuum cleaner.

Tale of One Urban Creek

An informative and interactive Art Installation The Tale of One Urban Creek

July & August 2022 The Tale of One Urban Creek July & August 2022 The Tale of One Urban Creek An informative and interactive Art Installation

An informative informative and An and interactive McMillan Arts Centre, Parksville, BC CANADA interactive Art Installation Art Installation Christopher SMITH * Robert HELD * Haa’Yuups

Kelly CORBETT * Deborah FREEMAN * Jesse RECALMA 2022 an Arts Centre, Parksville,July BC& August CANADA Nelson SHAW* David MACKENZIE July & August 2022

JULY 2 – AUGUST 28, 2022 ARTS CENTRE stopher SMITH * RobertMCMILLAN HELD * Haa’Yuups Christopher SMITH * Robert HELD * Haa’Yuups Kelly CORBETT * Deborah FREEMAN * Jesse RECALMA Nelson SHAW * David MACKENZIE

McMillan Arts Centre, Parksville, BC CANADA 133 McMillan Street, Parksville

In our tradition of creating installation art with aFREEMAN message, I RBETT * Deborah Jesse28, RECALMA July 2 -* August 2022 am pleased to welcome you to experience The Tale of One Urban Creek. This astounding exhibit is an exploration in glass, Nelson SHAW* David MACKENZIE MCMILLAN CENTRE Christopher SMITH * Robert HELD ARTS * Haa’Yuups photography, acrylic and steel art mediums of the beauty and

In our tradition of creating installation art with a message, I am pleased to welcome you to experience The Tale of One Urban Creek. This astounding exhibit is an exploration in glass, photography, acrylic and steel art mediums of the beauty and fragile nature of our special urban places. Focusing the artistic narrative on Parksville’s Shelly Creek, these amazing local artists bring their incredible talents to create an exhibit that will showcase the story of one of the last local waterways that bears salmon and trout populations and what we can do to sustain and even enhance them for future generations to enjoy. Jennifer Bate, Executive Director, McMillan Arts Centre

Kelly CORBETT * Deborah FREEMAN * Jesse RECALMA McMillan Arts Centre, Parksville Nelson SHAW* David MACKENZIE

fragile nature of our special urban places. Focusing the artistic narrative on Parksville’s Shelly Creek, these amazing local artists bring their incredible talents to create an exhibit that will showcase the story of one of the last local waterways that bears salmon and trout populations and what we can do to sustain and even enhance them for future generations to enjoy. Jennifer Bate, Executive Director, McMillan Arts Centre

Y 2 JULY – AUGUST 28, 2022 2 – AUGUST 28, 2022 Glaskrafter Art Glass


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Mill Bay Centre

We have it all – and more!

250-743-5500 | 2720 Mill Bay Road, Mill Bay |

behind the story

Zimmermann Dancer Glitter Tulle Peplum Blouse, $2,060, and Zimmerman Dancer Ombré Check Wide Leg Silk Pants, $925, both from Nordstrom Canada; vintage belt, stylist’s own.

Welcome to the wild west! The fashion story in this edition of Boulevard takes a step back in time, courtesy of The Hatching Post, located in West Kelowna. Dubbed “The only brewery and smokery parlor on the west!” the authentic saloonstyle ambiance at The Hatching Post provided the perfect backdrop to stage our shoot. PHOTO BY DARREN HULL

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2022 Lincoln Corsair



Experience Lincoln with a unique and personalized extended drive. Discover personalized services to make ownership truly effortless, including Pick up and Delivery, 24 hour Lincoln Concierge and the Lincoln Way App. Scan the QR Code to book online or call the Concierge directly at (250) 824-0816.

3851 Shenton Road, Nanaimo I 250-824-0816 I HOURS OF OPERATION: MON-THURS: 9:00 AM - 7:00 PM FRI-SAT: 9:00 AM - 6:00 PM DEALER # 10401