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Island Parent Celebrating

30 Years

The Resource Publication for Vancouver Island Parents

March 2018

pick Your Brain

GVPl’s Reading Quiz & Recommendations

Spring Break Programs

Educational Excellence to the Glory of God



1581 Hillside Ave, Victoria Come and See.

St. Joseph’s Elementary School

St. Joseph’s Elementary School has limited space in all grades (K–7), as well as space in our licensed Group Day Care and Preschool Program. Applications are available on-line or from the school office. St. Joseph’s offers a rigorous academic program in a Catholic Christian atmosphere.

757 West Burnside Road 250 479 1232

Come Grow With Us!


Across the street from Hillside Centre


Transforming disability into ability. At Discovery School, learning disabilities are transformed into valuable skills and abilities. Students work at their own pace in small classes, with focused, individualized instruction. • Experienced, highly-qualified teachers • Ongoing assessment, evaluation & feedback • Improves organizational & study skills • Boost confidence, independence & responsibility • Nurturing environment based on Christian values • For students in grades 1 – 12 • Individual Education Plans • Low student/teacher ratio

Enrolment is limited. For more information or to arrange a tour, visit, call Sherri Ko at 250-595-7765 or email principal@

I belong here, savouring summer. DON’T MISS OUT! Registration opens at 6 am April 4th, online, telephone & in-person Available online for viewing and planning April 2nd. ACTIVE LIVING GUIDE

Effective July to August 2018

Cedar Hill Recreation Centre G. R. Pearkes Recreation Centre Gordon Head Recreation Centre Saanich Commonwealth Place

250-475-7121 250-475-5400 250-475-7100 250-475-7600


44 Spring Is in the Air

Brookes Westshore An independent, co-educational Day and Boarding School for Grades 6 through 12.



  12 Jason Guille:

        On Shame

  Post-Married Mommy

     14 Spring Break

20 Ashley Degraaf:


Is There an App for This?

16 Greater Victoria

   22 Emillie Parrish:

      Public Library:      Pick Your Brain 

Island Parent Notes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6

Brookes Westshore in September 2018

    Cooking With Kids

34 Morgan Fankboner:    Healthy Families, Happy Families

In Every Issue Brookes Shawnigan Lake is Celebrating its Growth and Upcoming 10th Year Anniversary with the Opening of

5 Sue Fast: Editor’s Note 10 Erin Skillen:

Party Directory. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20, 21 Family Calendar. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24

   36 Christina Van      Starkenburg:        Book Nook  

42 Laura Trunkey:  

Family Services Directory. . . . . . . . . . . . . 38, 39

Maternity & Beyond

44 Renee Cenerini:

Preschool & Child Care Directory . . . . . . 40, 41

  Nature Notes

Business & Professional Directory. . . . . . . . . 43

46 Allison Rees: Cut It Out!

• New facilities, new location, same small school community feeling • Located beside Royal Roads University in Colwood • Offering the IB Diploma and BC Dogwood Diploma • Next Information Session: Tues. March 13, 6:30–8:30pm, Westshore Parks & Rec Centre, 1767 Island Hwy Visit our Interim Office location: 2227 Sooke Road

Sue Fast


Island Parent Magazine 830–A Pembroke Street Victoria, BC V8T 1H9 250-388-6905

Linda Frear

RaeLeigh Buchanan

Mark Warner

Office Manager & Sales

Advertising Consultant


Design & Layout Eacrett Graphic Design

Printed by Black Press

ISSN 0838-5505

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Advertising Booking Deadline: March 14

Island Parent Magazine, published by Island Parent Group Enterprises Ltd., is a monthly publication that honours and supports parents by providing information on resources and businesses for Vancouver Island families. Views expressed are not necessarily those of the publisher. No material herein may be reproduced without the permission of the publisher. Annual mail subscriptions (12 issues) are available for $35 (GST included). Canadian Publication Mail Product Sales Agreement 40051398.

On the Cover

Haydn D (4). Photo by Maryam Morrison Photography,

4  Island Parent Magazine


Spring Fling Things To Do

Drop By the Aquarium. If you’re in Ucluelet, attend the Aquarium’s free opening day on March 1, 10am-5pm. Be a Tourist …in Your Own Hometown. From March 2-4, pay $15 and get free entrance to attractions including Fort Rodd Hill, Miniature World and Sidney Museum. Plant Flowers. What better time to plant flowers than on National Plant a Flower Day, March 12? For seeds, visit GVPL’s drop-in Seed Swap on March 3, 17 and 31 from 10am-1pm. Visit Fort Rodd Hill. If it’s a rainy day, step inside the Fisgard Lighthouse at Fort Rodd Hill and play an oldfashioned game of checkers or one of the new video games. Then if the clouds break, there’s room around the grounds.

Stay Up Late & Play in the Dark…before the clock springs ahead on March 11 and the days get longer. Play flashlight tag, glowin-the-dark Frisbee, or stargaze. The next morning: sleep in. Enlist the Neighbors’ Help… and host a community garage sale. Hop On a Harbour Ferry. Take a 45-minute Harbour Tour, a 75-minute historic Gorge Tour, or a hip and a hop on a water taxi. Stops include the Empress Dock, Chinatown and Fisherman’s Wharf. Set Sail to Saltspring’s Saturday Market. Starting on March 26, the Saturday Market is back in business from 9am-4pm, rain or shine, featuring over 140 artisans and food producers—all at the water’s edge. And kidfriendly.

Visit Royal BC Museum. Step back in time and take in the Old Town, the First People’s Gallery, and the ever-popular woolly mammoth, among other highlights at RBCM. Stay for an IMAX movie.

Sue Fast Editor’s Note Pick up a copy of Island Parent Teens. On stands now—and filled with valuable information, insights, and resources, along with words of wisdom/frustration/elation and support, Island Parent Teens will give parents of little ones a glimpse into the future. You’ll find articles on helping your teen write an effective resumé, navigating relationships, talking about substance use, and how to survive learning to drive. Island Parent Teens is free and available at rec centres, libraries, schools, health units and most places you pick up Island Parent.

Creating beautiful smiles New patients always welcome Call or email us today and our dental team would be happy to assist you with an appointment

Westshore Dental Centre

Mon – Thurs: 7:30 am – 7:30 pm Fri: 7:30 am – 5:00 pm Sat: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm

152 – 2945 Jacklin Road  •  250-474-2296  •

March 2018  5

Island Parent Notes Visit a CRD Park

Check for asbestos and other hazards before you start renovating

Before you swing a hammer, hire a qualified professional to test for asbestos and remove it safely. Learn how to properly dispose of your reno waste to avoid being turned away at Hartland Landfill or private facilities. Find step-by-step guides, checklists and more at or contact the CRD at 250.360.3030.

Choose from a full slate of fun and informative CRD Parks programs this month. Follow a CRD Regional Parks naturalist up Mill Hill, on the prowl for Rascally Raccoons (Mar 3, 10-11:30am), a guided walk for all ages at Mill Hill Regional Park in Langford; the birds are busy at The Best Nest (Mar 11, 10-11am) a guided walk for kids five and under at Francis/King Regional Park in Saanich; solve riddles to find clues hidden along the trail at Mystery Creature (Mar 19, 10:30am-noon) an all-ages guided walk at Coles Bay Regional Park in North Saanich; a honey of a program fit for the royalty of the insect world, Buzz About Bees (Mar 21, 11am-2pm) is an all-ages drop-in event at Francis/King Regional Park in Saanich; if you’ve always wanted to birdwatch, now’s your chance at Beginner Birding Basics, a guided walk for ages 8 and up at Witty’s Lagoon Regional Park; search for giant gastropods at Ugh! A Slug! (Mar 25, 10-11:30am) a guided walk for all ages at Devonian Regional Park in Metchosin; learn about the natural history of the black bear at Bear Necessities (Mar 27, 1-2:30pm), a guided walk for ages 5 and up at East Sooke Regional Park; take part in the Amazing Race (Mar 29, 11am2pm) at Elk/Beaver Lake Regional Park in Saanich; something fishy is going on at Salmon Saturday (Mar 31, 11am-2pm), an all-ages drop-in event at Charters Interpretive Centre (off Sooke Rd in Sooke). To find out more and to pre-register (required for some programs), visit (link to Spring Nature Outings brochure).

The Kids Conference in Nanaimo

Divisions 3–4 years old 5U (Blast Ball) 5–6 years old 7U (T-Ball) If you live in one of the following areas:

Burnside/Gorge | Esquimalt Tillicum | Saanich Vic West | View Royal

Register Now! 6  Island Parent Magazine

7–8 years old 9U (Tadpole) 9–10 years old 11U (Mosquito) 11–12 years old 13U (Peewee)

Come explore the third annual Kids Conference on Saturday, March 10 from 9:30am-4pm at Vancouver Island Conference Centre, 101 Gordon St in Nanaimo. The Kid’s Conference was created in Nanaimo so that parents and children in our community would be able to discover and learn about resources available to all. The Kid’s Conference is focused on bridging the gap between all economic backgrounds, and promoting a future for all children. Featuring entertainment, speakers, vendors and more. Admission is free. The goal of The Kids Conference is to promote knowledge, inclusion, discovery and support. For parents and children 12 and under. For information, visit

32nd Annual Pacific Rim Whale Festival

Join the fun on the shores of Vancouver Island’s wild west coast at the 31st Annual Pacific Rim Whale Festival (PRWF) from March 10-25. Celebrate the arrival of upwards of 20,000 grey whales—often traveling within viewing distance of shore—on their northbound migration from the Baja Peninsula to Alaska’s Bering Sea and beyond. Throughout Tofino and Ucluelet and around Pacific Rim National Park you’ll find an array of events. Bring your pets, favourite dolls, outrageous costumes or your float, and join the Parade of Whales and Wonders (Mar 10, 10:15-11am), sign up for the 22nd annual Chowder Chowdown (Mar 18, 11:30am-2pm), get creative at the Sea Creature Cookie Decorating event at Common Loaf Bakery (Mar 19, 3-4:30pm), drop by Maritime Kid’s Day featuring Bobs & Lolo (in Tofino at Tin Wis Resort on Mar 21, 1-4pm; and in Ucluelet at Ucluelet Community Centre on Mar 22, 1-4pm), among other family-friendly events. Many of the activities are free, with the purchase of an PRWF Events Button. It’s an all-out celebration of our coastal lives, featuring grey whale and marine life education, inspirational talks and interpretive walks, children’s activities, culinary events, First Nations cultural workshops, and more. For more information, visit, e-mail or phone 1-250-726-7798.

You’ll learn ways to initiate the conversation with your child, ideas on how to help them find their passion and ways to support them as they get involved in causes that matter to them. Partial proceeds from this event with go to the Cridge Centre for the Family. This event includes a one hour talk and 30 minute Q&A. Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door. Stay for a reception celebrating the launch of Casap’s and Robert’s new book, On Our Street: Our First Talk About Poverty, hosted by Orca Book Publishers and FamilySparks at St. Michaels University School Chapel, 3400 Richmond Rd.

Festival Nanaimo

Festival Nanaimo, a multi-dimensional community festival, is back this March with fun events for the whole family. For starters, the festival has a lineup of eight Festival Nanaimo “Signature Events” at venues all around the city—from concerts to theatre, food tastings, cycling and walking tours and sporting events. Arrgh mateys. Grab your eye-patch and your sword for five days of bucaneering shenanigans at PirateFest. The Purple Pirate

is back. Bring the family for a fun all-ages adventure as award-winning children’s performer Dustin Anderson sails back into Nanaimo for a show at the Port Theatre during PirateFest 2018. Country Club Centre is PirateFest Headquarters from March 23-24 with free activities all week. PirateFest Day is officially on March 24, starting at noon with a parade downtown, prizes and activities at the Nanaimo Museum, the Harbourfront Library and The Port Theatre. For more information, visit

Tillicum LEGO Mania Challenge

Come and join the 9th annual Tillicum LEGO Mania Challenge March 24 and 25 at Tillicum Centre. Registration is underway. Over 100 contestants, ages 5–14 years will be showcasing their LEGO masterpieces for a chance to Win LEGO prizes. The theme this year: Sports and Recreation. Meet LEGO Certified Professional, Robin Sather, and watch him build a giant scene using LEGO bricks. Children under 14 years who are not contestants will have a chance to try out our mini build area. The Victoria Lego Users Group (VicLUG) will also be on hand with some of their fun

Raising Global Citizens: Inspiring Your Kids to Give Back

“Don’t ask kids what they want to be when they grow up. Ask them what problem they want to solve,” says Jaime Casap, Google’s “Education Evangelist.” It’s easy to become self-focused in our selfie culture, especially for our kids who are growing up in it. They can feel helpless in the face of so much bad news in the world. Rather than giving in, how can we help our kids push back against the negativity and learn to create positive change? Join Casap and child psychologist Dr. Jillian Roberts on Tuesday March 13 from 6:30-8pm in this one-time-only talk about how we can empower kids to become socially-conscious global citizens. Encouraging kids to make a difference isn’t just good for the world around us—it also builds your child’s resilience, outlook and self-esteem.

March 2018  7

Year-round Getaway on Mayne Island with direct daily ferries from Swartz Bay

9 housekeeping cottages perfect for family getaways

250-539-2463 • 1-877-535-2424

LEGO creations. Prizes will be awarded for the top three entries for ages 5-8 years and 9-14 years on Sunday, March 25 at 2pm. More prizes will be given out during LEGO Trivia on Sunday, March 25 at 1:30pm. Drop by the lower level of Tillicum Centre during regular mall hours and see an exciting LEGO exhibit. Entries are limited to one LEGO display per child and must be registered by March 15. For more information, visit

Nanaimo’s New Indoor Skating Rink

Last month, Vancouver Island’s largest shopping centre, Woodgrove Centre in Nanaimo, opened the doors to a new indoor skating rink. From now until April 1, guests can enjoy the unique experience of skating indoors on synthetic ice. All proceeds will go to the Nanaimo Child Development Centre (NCDC), which has a 50-year history of empowering children in the community with special needs. Admission is $3 per person/15 minutes; Toonie Tuesdays and Thursdays, $2 per person/15 minutes. One hundred per cent of proceeds will be donated to the Nanaimo Child De-

velopment Centre. For more information, visit

Teen Writing Contest at GVPL

Enter Greater Victoria Public Library’s Teen Writing Contest. Categories: Short Story: Grades 7-9 and Grades 10-12. Poetry: Grades 7-9 and Grades 10-12. Random: Grades 7-9 and Grades 10-12. What is the “Random” category, you ask? Writing in any format that is not a poem or short story. This is where you can enter your graphic novel, your zine, your original song lyrics, your screenplay, a personal essay, your blog, your best tweets… If you are not enrolled in a grade as defined, your entry can be considered based on your age. Entrants must be born between Jan 1, 2000 and Dec 31, 2005. Submissions must be your own work and not have been published elsewhere (submissions that you wrote for a school assignment are accepted and encouraged) and must be received no later than midnight, March 26. Short stories or other forms (such as essays) must not exceed 2,000 words in length. Entrants must have a valid Greater Victoria Public Library card. One entry per category per person.

Cover Photo Contest For the 2018 Family Summer Guide or Kids’ Guide to Victoria & Vancouver Island Send us a colourful, clear photo of your kids or family enjoying a summer moment on Vancouver Island, and it may end up on the cover of this year’s Family Summer Guide or Kids’ Guide. 1st Prize: Main cover photo on the Family Summer Guide and $100 Gift Certificate to the business of your choice on Vancouver Island. Runners up: five or more runners up will receive two IMAX tickets and their photos will be featured on the cover of either the Family Summer Guide or Kids’ Guide. Only digital submissions will be accepted. Send a maximum of three photos of medium or higher resolution (preferably 2–3MB). Photos must be colour shots of children or families in Vancouver Island locations. Contest is open to Vancouver Island residents only. No professional photographers, please. Entry deadline is Tuesday, April 9, 2018; winners will be notified by email by Monday, May 14. Winning photos become the property of Island Parent Magazine.

Send entries to: 8  Island Parent Magazine

Winners will be selected by April 30 or earlier. Judges will be from a panel made up of library staff, local writers, and teens from GVPL’s Teen Council. First prize: a $100 gift certificate to the store of your choice. Runners up in each

category will receive a $25 gift certificate to any store. Winners and their writing will be featured at a Teen Writers’ Reception in May, date TBA. For more information, rules and submission guidelines, visit gvpl. ca/audiences/teens/teen-writing-contest.

Annual Writing & Art Contest for Youth 13–19

Youth from around the globe can now enter their finest poems, short stories and art for a chance to win prizes and publication. The contest is open until March 15. Visit to read the full guidelines and submit online. Every entry is considered for publication, regardless of results. Every entrant receives a one-year subscription to the Claremont Review (tCR), an international writing and art magazines for youth in the world. Poetry: up to 3 poems per entry free verse, haiku, haibun, sonnets, free form, prose poems, concrete poems and mixed-genre welcome. Art: up to 3 pieces per entry drawings, paintings, photographs, graphic art, mixed media welcome. Fiction: 1 piece per entry, up to 2,000 words, flash, postcard, short fiction and mixed-genre welcome. General Guidelines: entrants must be between 13-19 years old on the date of the entry and may be from anywhere in the world. Entries must be in English and will be judged anonymously and on merit. Do not put your name on the poem, story or artwork and submit only previously unpublished work (on a personal blog or social media page is okay). Enter as many times as you like, in any category. Shortlist and winners will be announced in May. 1st, 2nd and 3rd place and honourable mentions published in fall 2018. Each person entering will receive a one-year subscription to tCR. All entrants considered for publication regardless of results. Entry fee is $25. For information and to register, visit

March 2018  9

Spring Break Camps at GNS

Dirty Little Secret


GNS is pleased to offer fun and exciting weekly camps to families during the upcoming Spring Break. Play a favourite sport or try a new one, get sorted and make a wand, or conduct science experiments, all while having fun and making new friends! Monday, March 19 to Friday, March 23 Mini Olympics Camp for children in Junior Kindergarten to Grade 6 Harry Potter Camp for children in Grades 4 to 6 Monday, March 26 to Thursday, March 29 STEAM Camp for children in Junior Kindergarten to Grade 6

Visit to register. Glenlyon Norfolk School

Spring Break

at the

Cowichan Estuary Nature Centre

10  Island Parent Magazine

have written previously about the immense difficulty of processing the loss of half of your kids’ childhoods when you split with their other parent. I’ve spent hundreds, if not thousands, in therapy working that one through. While there will likely always been a sense of guilt for me around that, I will admit there is something to be said for only being a hands-on parent half the time. My co-parent and I split each week because our kids are still pretty young and a full week feels too long to be apart. This will likely change as they get older and divest interest in us to focus more on friendships. For now, Mommy and Daddy still get top billing, so we alternate every three or four nights. We share family events and activities together even when it’s not “our day” to have the kids. But for three or four nights each week, one of us has a home to ourself. And while some parents might be horrified at that thought, I have to admit there are upsides. On the days I’m away from my kids I get a lot more done. A lot. More work, more hobbies, more sleep, more time with friends and more “me” time. I generally do what I want when I want. And I clean my house efficiently with absolutely no one running around behind me making new messes. When I’m not with them, I do my best to be the woman I want them to see as a role model—successful, happy and centred. I nearly always at least talk to them every day, but that’s not the same as being a mom on the front lines 24/7. So on my days apart I am refueled, energized and feeling that, though like I can’t do it all and I still struggle, I’m doing my best most of the time. And then, after a few days apart, I miss them. Deeply. We’re thrilled to see one another and start our “single mom” days together. And I am ready for them. I am able to focus on them, prioritize them and

have the energy it takes to parent them solo. I cherish our time together, make time to snuggle together at the beginning and end of each day, and look forward to taking care of them after days alone. On these days, I do my best to be the mom I want them to have, one who’s loving, patient and engaged (though I’ll admit, patience is still very much a challenge). Here’s the thing though—you don’t have to go through a separation or divorce to experience some of the upsides of part-time parenting. Providing your partner with a

Erin Skillen Post-Married Mommy degree of autonomy to do the things they love and see people they care about, without you, can be magical (if reciprocal). Getting a babysitter at least once a month so you can take kid-free time together may take the edge off your regular routine and allow you to reconnect as a couple. Breathing—as an individual and a couple—is necessary and powerful. Without it we lose our connection with our partner and ourselves. We suffocate, perhaps even atrophy, and resentment accumulates on whatever remains. We met as individuals and then chose to become a couple and have children (maybe not in that order). Most, if not all, of us did not choose to sacrifice ourselves completely and become identifiable only as someone’s mom or dad. We all have interests, passions and needs and part of being a family is supporting one another in the pursuit of happiness and fulfilment. If we can’t breathe, we can’t be the best version of ourselves. We want our children to be healthy, happy and accomplished. We deserve that for ourselves as well and they deserve that in their parents. So yes, I have a dirty little secret. Sometimes being a part-time parent is incredibly hard. But sometimes it inspires me to a degree that wouldn’t have been possible as a full time mom who couldn’t breathe.

An experience that lasts a lifetime! SAVE

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Leadership • Summer Camp • Rentals

Erin Skillen is the co-founder and COO of, an education company that helps parents navigate the toughest job in the world. She’s also a mom and a bucket list slayer.

Register or Call Today! • 250-743-2189 •

March 2018  11

Wensley Family Realtors® Trusted from generation to generation

Born and raised in Victoria, Paula is a REALTOR with a long, successful family background in the industry. She has the experience, energy and enthusiasm necessary to assist you with all your Real Estate needs across the South Island.

Paula Wensley

Office: 250-388-5882 Cell: 778-678-7387


Family Discovery Days Self-guided: 10am-5pm March 23, 24, 30 & 31 Special Programs March 20 & 28 + 27 & 29 Miners Cottage | Coal Geology Kids Drop-in Activities 10:00am - 2:00pm March 21, 23, 28 & 30 Shipwrecked ~ Coal Miners Museum Olypmics & More! Admission by Donation 250.753.1821 ~ 100 Museum Way

12  Island Parent Magazine

On Shame


he year my best friend was killed in a work accident, my son was two, his mother and I around 22. As underskilled young parents, we had our share of breakdowns, but I was certain that we could get through anything and would be together as a family until death. I never thought the death that would be the beginning of our end would be someone else’s. We were so young then, with so few life skills. We didn’t have the tools to navigate the immensity of my mourning, manifesting in prolonged sorrow and withdrawal. Within months of my friend’s passing, our relationship ended. We did the best we could at the time—neither one of us was to blame. Shame, however, is a different story. Amidst sadness, anger and confusion, I moved out from our shared home and began to awaken to this new parental context. Suddenly I was a part-time dad which, in my mind at the time, meant utter loser. While my mourning for my friend remained present and real, it was cleaner, simpler. I had no guilt mixed into my sadness. My failure for my family, though, was a different type of devastation. It was my fault. I was supposed to have the skills to make it work. I was supposed to be able to communicate better. I was supposed to wake up with them every day and take care of them. I was supposed to find a way. My own father left when I was an infant, and chose not to be involved in my life. Largely driven by my experience of abandonment, I had grown up clear about one thing: when I had a family one day, we would be together forever. My identity as a man had become deeply interwoven with my “success” as a parent and family man. I was clearly insufficient in the one domain that most defines manhood. To my despair, I had become the vision I had of my own estranged father, an incompetent bumbling half-man. As it goes in life, my story began to drive my behaviours. Though it was not a “truth” that I was a failure as a result of my nuclear family ending, believing I was a failure was debilitating. Convincing myself that I was bereft of manhood had a very real impact on my relationships with my son and his mother. It impacted me everywhere. A year later his mother was in a new partnership, which came packaged with two young daughters. Shortly thereafter, a nice home, dogs, minivan—and a new baby on the way. The fulfillment of the family I hadn’t been able to provide was now complete. I felt a deep resignation into my self-created irrelevance. I

lost sight of where I fit into the equation. My shameful younger self with pre-existing ideas about family and failure decided they would be better off without me. I withdrew. Looking back, it’s amazing to me how much my story that I was a failure led to actually

Jason Guille failing, and not the other way around. Connecting with my son meant I had to work with his mother, and in every phone call there it was—my part-time-dad-ness. I was a diminished version of myself, ever present to my own shortcomings, both real and perceived. I arrived to each conversation self-berating, and behaved consistent with that—tentative, curt, indifferent, irrelevant, bitter, fearful, shameful. I don’t envy her having to deal with my lack of presence, groundedness, consistency, and belonging, my deficiencies further amplified by our mutual frustration and righteousness. I spent many years of my son’s youth feeling certain that I didn’t belong, my guilt compounded by not being able to be the dad I’d hoped to be. By the time I began to transcend my failure story a decade had passed. I had been intermittently involved in my son’s early life. The years since have been a process of slow repair, rebuilding and reconnecting through the distance I had allowed to be created in our relationship. It has now been 20 years since my nuclear family’s nuclear meltdown, and although I’m a vastly different human than I was, I can still tap into my shame. Everyone involved suffered, too, all inside of a myopic vision of how it is “supposed to go” and my inability to adapt to a new reality. Today, my son and I are great friends and love spending time together. While we continue to deepen our connection and practice our communication, I know our fragmented history may forever impact our trust and depth. Still, I learned long ago that I can’t live in a state of shame and love at the same time. Only one of these feelings has a home here now.

Jason Guille lives and plays in Victoria, where he runs a social enterprise providing video livestream services and spends his recreation time making music, kayaking and in nature.


Building Enviromental Stewardship


nvironmental stewardship refers to the responsible use and protection of the natural environment through conservation and sustainable practices. A key goal in the St. Margaret’s Strategic Plan relates to global and environmental stewardship. Our educational programs have an international and environmental focus. SMS facilities support the inclusion of environmental sustainability principles into curricular, co-curricular, and student life programs. Some of the areas that have been recently adressed include: • Conservation of energy, water and other resources • Reduction of emissions • Environmental education and awareness • Environmentally responsible acquisition (purchasing) • Green Technology A number of environmental stewardship projects have also been integrated across grades and as part of the important work championed by the Environmental Club (Grades 7 - 12). The early years’ facilitate an annual beach clean-up to make an impact in the local community. St. Margaret’s School is a leader in early childhood education and their innovative spin on Nature Kindergarten called OWL (Outside While Learning) is central to all levels of early primary at the school. In fact, St. Margaret’s has taken outdoor learning to a higher level. Not limited to Kindergarten, outdoor experience is an integral part of the curriculum from JK to grade 12. This connection with nature is essential to the school’s commitment to STEM education and inquiry-based learning. As the Head of School, Cathy Thornicroft, puts it, “SMS students learn about natural science, geography, environmental studies, outdoor skills, team-building, and adventure living.”

ST. MARGARET’S SCHOOL Confident girls. Inspiring women.

JK – Grade 12 (Boarding: Grades 7–12) 1080 Lucas Ave, Victoria March 2018  13

Spring Break Programs Ah, spring—a time of blossoms, breezes and Spring Break. There’s lots to do during the break as you’ll see from the following listing. For more information on any of these programs, please refer to the ads in this issue (Ad Index on page 43). Have fun in the—dare we say it—sun!

Sat. March 17 | 1pm VIU’s Malaspina Theatre

We acknowledge the financial assistance of the Province of British Columbia

Tickets $12 each or two for $20 250-754-7587 | Mid Island

Are You New to the community? A new parent? A new business owner?

Contact Welcome Wagon Today! Nanaimo 250-756-9794 Or online at:

14  Island Parent Magazine

Join us this Spring for inspiring art classes and camps in the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria’s (AGGV) Studio! Connect with cool new ideas, techniques and experiment with the creative process. Classes are for a wide range of ages and inspired by Gallery exhibitions featuring; Water + Pigment + Paper Experiments in Watercolour from the AGGV Collection. Register online: learn/aggv-studio, in person at 1040 Moss Street or by phone: 250-384-4171 For more information email: See you in the Studio!

This spring the City of Victoria offers a range of programs for everyone. Looking for ways to keep the kids busy and active over Spring Break? Try Horseback Riding Camp or World Cup Soccer Camp. There will be Spring Break Fun Swims daily from 1-3:30pm. Mom and Dad why not hire a personal trainer while the kids are in the pool? You can find more information on all our programs and services, as well as drop-in schedules, at or by calling 250-361-0732.

The Cowichan Estuary Nature Centre is ready for a Spring season full of fun, learning, discovery, and exploring our watershed. Open to the public from 12pm4pm, Thursday through Sunday and every holiday Monday. The Nature Centre has Bring your family to Blue Vista Resort and activities for all ages, including wildlife start a new tradition. Located steps from watching, a microscope station, craft station Bennett Bay and the Gulf Island National for kids, interactive maps, and a touch tank Reserve with its beaches and shoreline where you can get up close and personal walks on Mayne Island, this Tourism BC with estuary creatures. This Spring Break Approved Accommodation has been cater- we will be offering workshops for youth ing to families for over three decades. With and families—check our Facebook Page or nine individualized housekeeping cottages website for more info! to choose from and a quiet lawn with barbecues, picnic tables and a children’s play Winner of BC’s Remarkable Experience area, this small family-run resort invites you Award, the Horne Lake Caves is a natural to join a tradition many families have been jewel and one of the coolest family adenjoying for years. Cabins start at under ventures on Vancouver Island. This park $100/night. Visit for has wild adventure both above and below ground. Start with a video in Canada’s only rates and details. 1-877-535-2424. Cave Theater and then hike and explore the Christ Church Cathedral School’s Sum- crystal-filled caverns. Tours depart every mer Program provides a safe and exciting day, year-round. Prefer your adventures summer for your child. We have a high above-ground? Try a rock rappelling session supervision ratio, experienced staff, ex- designed for beginners. Lakefront camping cursions every day, plus all the facilities and canoe rentals are also available within of Cathedral School. This program runs walking distance. Visit us for Spring Break! from June 25-August 29 and is suitable for ages 5-10. Registration forms available online: 250- SKAM School of Performing Arts offers 383-5125 for details or email luxmundi@ young people with a dramatic interest or passion special programs. Courses and

for all activities. We guarantee our 8 to 1 ratio, offer convenient class times and ensure certified instruction so that your child will excel in a well-structured, fun and safe environment. Visit

Spend Spring Break with West Shore Parks & Recreation. This year we offer a variety of camps at Juan de Fuca Recreation Centre, Centennial Centre and the Neighbourhood Learning Centre at Royal Bay School. Preschoolers will ‘Spring in to Action’ with camps for little chefs and young yogis. School age kids can try something new from Acting and Improv to Art, from Sports Camp to Mad Science. Visit for more, or call 250-478-838 to register. West Shore Parks & Recreation, 1767 Island Highway.•

Bleiddyn del Villar Bellis Artistic Director Fellow & Examiner CSC-CICB Enrico Cecchetti Final Diploma

Kinder Camps Ages 4-6 July 3-6, 9-12pm July 9-13, 9-12pm BOYS CAN DANCE Ages 7-11 - FREE for boys new to VAB! July 9-13, 1-2:30pm

Photo credit: David Cooper

Looking for Spring Break fun? Then try one of our great programs at Saanich Parks and Recreation. We have a large selection to choose from, including computers, dance, arts and crafts, martial arts, sports and daycamps for kids 5-15 years of age. Also, don’t forget about our fantastic fun swims in the pool or Everyone Welcome skates. Whatever you’re looking for, you will probably find it at one of our four recreation centres. Check out Nanaimo Conservatory. Our favorite recreation for more information. rascally pirates are back at work, seeking adventure and treasure on the high seas. St. Michaels University School. A break Join instructor Lindsay Suddaby for a fun- from school does not have to mean a filled week of music theatre during Spring break from learning. When students want Break. March 19-23 2018 (first week of to tackle something new and exciting, our Spring Break) 10am-4pm at the NCM. Spring Break programs offer plenty of ways Pirates aged 8-14 are welcome. Early bird young people can stay entertained. From registration (if received by 1 March): $250. baking to sports to animation, holiday Registration (after 1 March): $350. Class programs are diverse and engaging. The size is limited, so register early. Register Passion Sports team also returns with more by phone at 250-754-4611 or in person at sell-out elite basketball camps. The Spring 375 Selby Street, Nanaimo. Please contact Break Programs at St. Michaels University Shannon Maliteare (NCM Registrar) for School are open to all children in Victoria more information ages 5 to 15 and appeal to a wide range of interests. For information on any of these 250-754-4611. exciting programs, visit our website at smus. The Nanaimo Museum offers drop in ca/spring or call (250) 370-6120. programs for children ages 5-12 and their families during spring break. Admission Spring is all about new beginnings… so by donation. Caregivers must be present. don’t wait a moment longer to learn to play Self-guided Family Discovery days happen music! Playing an instrument is a richly Fridays and Saturdays, March 23, 24, 30 rewarding lifetime asset. Now is the time and 31 from 10am-5pm. Popular drop-in to begin your musical journey at Tom Lee theme programs run Mondays-Thursdays Music Academy, where music is fun and from 10am-2pm: Olympics @ The Museum learning is easy for all ages. tomleemusic. (Mar 19 and 21), Coal Miners (Mar 20 and ca/academy. 28), Shipwrecked (Mar 22), Chewichikan and The Snuneymuxw (Mar 26), Coal Providing a child with a foundation in music Geology (Mar 27 and 29). We also have is one of the most valuable things a parent two special programs running from 10am- can do. At the Victoria Conservatory 12noon this year, where you can explore of Music we sing, we play, from Rock to a real miners cottage or create your own Bach we have fun and this is the best way crystals to learn how coal forms: Miners to begin a lifelong journey with music. Cottage (Mar 20 and 28) and Coal Geology We have awesome classes and individual studio instruction at both our downtown (Mar 27 and 29). and Langford locations. Visit or Recreation Oak Bay is your headquarters call 250-386-5311 for details. Let’s Play! for Spring Break Camp fun! Join us for themed activities, crafts, out-trips, swim- Victoria Gymnastics is celebrating its 39th ming and more. There are so many different year and enjoying the success of its two locacamps to choose from including Movie Ma- tions—downtown and the newest location nia, Byte Camp, Sticks and Kicks, Sportball near Royal Roads University in Colwood. Multisport Camp, and Challenger Camp. We continue to provide quality artistic gymHave a blast at Oak Bay Recreation Centre nastics for boys and girls ages two through with daily theme swims, fun on the ice or adult, beginner through advanced. Our enjoy Specialty, Aquatic and Sports camps. non-competitive achievement programs Check or call 250- provide children with a skill set advantage 595-7946 to find the right camp for you! camps run fall, winter, spring and summer. The studio is highly regarded in Victoria for running quality theatre programming for youth. We offer something for all levels. At the end of each term, students will have an opportunity to perform their work for an audience! Groups are small for quality instruction. For more information, call 250-386-7536 or email kathleen@skam. ca.

2018 Children’s Summer Ballet Camps 250-590-6752

March 2018  15

c. “Think and wonder, wonder and think.” d. “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.” e. “I would not like them here or there. I would not like them anywhere. I do not re you adventurous, creative, curious or an epicurean? Take this quiz to discover like green eggs and ham. I do not like what kind of mind you have, then enjoy reading recommendations for kids and them Sam I Am.” teens from Greater Victoria Public Library’s Collections Services librarians. For more recommendations for all ages, go to 5. If you were an animal, which would you be? Circle your choice to pick your c. Nancy Drew a. Mountain goat d. The Lorax brain. b. Beluga e. Winnie the Pooh c. Cat 1. Your ideal day would be spent: a. working toward a goal, planning an 3. What clichéd expression are you most d. Elephant e. Panda likely to use? exotic holiday, spending time outdoors b. taking an art class, honing your craft, a. Back in the saddle 6. What superpower do you wish you had? b. Back to the drawing board getting lost in thought a. Fly c. reading a non-fiction book, trying some- c. Don’t judge a book by its cover b. Make anything out of thin air thing new, working on a passion project d. Bent out of shape c. Time travel d. helping a friend, spending time with a e. Easy as pie d. Heal yourself and others pet, enjoying the view e. learning about a new friend, setting a 4. What’s your favourite Dr. Seuss quote? e. Make magical potions personal goal, having a delicious meal a. “You’re off to great places! Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting, so 7. Which historical person would you like with a breathtaking view to grab a coffee with? get on your way!” 2. Choose your ideal literary dinner guest: b. “Why fit in when you were born to a. Amelia Earhart b. Leonardo da Vinci stand out?” a. Peter Pan c. Albert Einstein b. Anne of Green Gables

Pick Your Brain


16  Island Parent Magazine

d. Mahatma Ghandi e. Julia Child 8. How would your friends describe you? a. Is a leader; accepts challenges; has wanderlust b. Generates lots of ideas; expresses self; sees connections between seemingly unrelated things c. Asks questions; suggests unconventional solutions; is willing to be wrong d. Leads an active lifestyle; is community oriented; is mindful to self and others e. Has drive, passion and willpower 9. Choose your socks: a. Balloon socks b. Rainbow and watermelon socks c. Space socks d. Orca socks e. Egg socks

Mostly As: Adventurous Mind

There’s no mountain too tall, no ocean too deep, no cloud out of reach. You grab life by the handlebars and ride the trail with vigor and skillfulness—even through the bumps and rough patches. In fact, you LOVE the bumps and rough patches; they make you feel alive, fuel your hunt for interesting challenges, give rise to opportunities to learn off the beaten path. You are great at setting lofty goals, and also at achieving them. You’ll say yes to surfing in Tofino, trying grasshoppers in Chiang Mai and riding a mechanical bull in Dallas. You are not thrown when things don’t go according to plan; learning through experimentation is one of your strengths. To you, mishaps mark the chance to learn something in an unexpected way. Recommended Reads: Kids The Adventurer’s Guide to Successful Escapes by Wade Albert White The Wee Free Men: A Story of Discworld by Terry Pratchett Recommended Reads: Teens I Am Number Four by Pittacus Lore And Then You’re Dead by Cody Cassidy Recommended E-Resource*: Take a chance on a new book with NoveList, which makes reading recommendations based on previous books and authors you’ve enjoyed.

Mostly Bs: Creative Mind

You express yourself best when you create, whether planting dahlias or renovating your kitchen, photographing your hamster or playing electric guitar. You don’t follow a

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March 2018  17

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linear thinking process; you embrace happy mistakes; and you’re known for solving problems with unconventional—but effective—approaches. Your ideas have wow factor. They make people stop and think and say “I never thought of it that way.” You love to laugh, live to love (be it golden retrievers, the Canucks or the colour of avocado), and think there’s no better way to learn than learning through play. Recommended Reads: Kids Frindle by Andrew Clements Emily of New Moon by L.M. Montgomery Recommended Reads: Teens Literally by Lucy Keating Emily of New Moon by L. M. Montgomery Recommended E-Resource*: Embrace indie creativity and stream movies through InstantFlix, which features a wide collection of films from festivals around the world including Sundance and Cannes.

Mostly Cs: Curious Mind

Why do cows moo? What’s under that rock? Why do identical twins have different fingerprints? Questions are your m.o. You turn over every leaf you encounter; you wonder how to reach the stars; and you marvel at science and philosophy and how almond milk is made. Your curiosity makes you a go-getter. You enjoy the journey of searching for answers, and you welcome the unknown, which presents ever more phenomena for you to explore. Your curious mind means you never stop learning; there’s always something around the corner to spark your interest, illuminate your thinking, and change your mind—and you can’t wait to see what’s next. Recommended Reads: Kids Olga and the Smelly Thing From Nowhere by Elise Gravel Book Scavenger by Jennifer Chambliss Bertman Recommended Reads: Teens Heartless by Marissa Meyer One of Us is Lying by Karen M. McManus Recommended E-Resource*: Follow your curiosity and log in to You can take thousands of online courses and watch videos related to photography, travel, leadership, business and more. 119–1591 McKenzie Ave, Victoria

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Island Parent Magazine

Mostly Ds: Healthy Mind

To your way of thinking, a healthy mind and body means a healthy world. You believe every living being plays a role in creating wellness for each other, and you focus your energies on achieving your best self to benefit the world around you. Concern for humanity, animals and the environment are dear to your heart. You thirst for knowledge on how you can help make the world a better place; you see the best in others and encourage them to reach their potential; and you are devoted to healthy, clean and mindful living. Your commitment to balance and respect for others means you are keen to discover new ways to live in harmony and take care of one another. Recommended Reads: Kids Restart by Gordon Korman Out of My Mind by Sharon M. Draper Recommended Reads: Teens All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven One by Sarah Crossnan Recommended E-Resource*: Dive into articles all about the environment with GreenFILE. Get the facts about green living, environmentalism, conservation and more.

Mostly Es: Hungry Mind

Mon, March 12: Savory Wed, March 14: Lakewood Mon, April 9: Saseenos Wed, April 11: Millstream and Previously named Bedtime Shenanigans

Wishart Elem: Date TBA

Join Us!  6 – 7 pm Ready, Set, Read Children ages 0 to 5 years

Join us for pre-bedtime fun! We will be playing games, enjoying snacks, and listening to a few delightful stories and songs. This FREE evening is for children aged 0 to 5 years and their parents/caregivers. Running shoes suggested, wear pajamas if you like. For more info contact

Register for our Spring Term Today! (250) 386-7526

Classes in Drama, Stage Craft, Film & More!

Your appetite for life means you seek out experiences that increase joy, challenge your thinking and increase your appreciation for living. Hungry for all life has to offer, you take in new information by the plateful and thrive on trying to make sense of it. You appreciate the delectable things in life— travel to exotic locales, late-night conversations by the fire, gourmet donuts—and have an insatiable thirst for the extravagant and extraordinary. You foster strong friendships fueled by shared passions, tantalizing secrets and joie de vivre. You can be counted on to laugh a lot, achieve your goals and indulge in all life’s treasures. Recommended Reads: Kids This Book is Not Good for You by Pseudonymous Bosch All Four Stars by Tara Dairman Recommended Reads: Teens North of Happy by Adi Alsaid Mortal Engines by Philip Reeve Recommended E-Resource*: You’ll eat up the information and entertainment available through RBdigital Magazines, which has hundreds of digital magazines. * Log in with your GVPL library card number and password at

Wed, March 7: Hans Helgesen

March 2018  19

Driving with Kids


riving with children has to be one of the worst distractions for drivers, especially on a bad day with crazy, sugared-up or meltdown-central kids. Maybe not so much on a really good day, but the majority of the time, it is. I will never dismiss the dangers of driving while texting or chatting on the phone. I find it as risky as looking for your favourite song on the radio, for example, or leaning down to pick up that piece of muffin that fell by your foot. However, for me, nothing compares to two children freaking out or fighting with each other in the backseat while you’re driving. Imagine high-pitched screaming, one of your kids kicking the back of the driver seat when you’re behind the wheel, your other kid throwing objects, the sound of those objects hitting the door panel, turning around to grab that object and take it away, and some more yelling as a result, say while driving around downtown Victoria, almost turning the wrong way on a busy one-way street, or merging onto the Pat Bay highway during rush hour. Deep breath. Even just writing that gave me anxiety. Even parents with newborns, especially babies who hate being in their car seats and scream bloody murder the entire drive, can relate to this. I can’t count how many times this past year I’ve had to pull over and wait till my children stopped fighting or screaming. Which leads me to some tips and ideas I’ve come up with on how to manage these distractions. • Crank Ob-la-di, ob-la-da (my kid’s favourite Beatles songs) or your child’s favourite tune, to drown out the yelling and distract from whatever is causing the yelling. • Pull over. I know. I already mentioned this, but it’s important. When the youknow-what is hitting the fan, the best solution is to pull over (if it’s safe). • When pulled over, take three deep breaths. Let go of any stress or anxiety. Practice that dragon breath, the breath of fire the yogis do. When you’re feeling calm, then cruise back onto the road. • Try, for obvious reasons, to eliminate objects that can be thrown. Not only is this safer, but you’ll also have less items

20  Island Parent Magazine

to pick up (from the front seat) when they drop them (in the back), which is another huge distraction. • Play travel-friendly kids’ games. For a good while there, Jack, Audrey and I would each choose a colour of vehicle and would get a point for each time we saw that colour on a car driving past us. Whoever had the


Ashley Degraaf Is There an App for This? most points by the time we reached our destination won. Jack always chose white. He’s very smart. Audrey hasn’t quite caught on yet and would often choose pink. Eye spy works well, too. Plus, it gives me a big smile every time Jack says, “Eye spy with my big little eye…” in his cute little voice. • Avoid eating while driving. It helps save on big messes in the car, but more importantly, it’s also less distracting. Just imagine: “Mom, my yogurt tube squeezed out all over my shirt…clean it up now…I need a napkin!” • If you’re travelling far, make sure to break up the trip with a few stops. Whenever I’ve travelled up Island to visit family, we always choose a few pit stops with bathrooms, food and a park so the kids can stretch their legs. • Devices. If you’re like me and have anxiety driving in the city, the best solution—as much I hate how easily my kids can get addicted to devices—is allowing your child to watch a show on the iPad for some quiet time. Jack loves playing “DJ” and choosing songs from my phone and that’s OK with me, although we often end up listening to Fitz & The Tantrum’s HandClap song way too many times. If you have any tips on driving with kids, please email me at ashleydegraaf@ Be safe out there!

Ashley Degraaf is a freelance writer based out of the Cowichan Valley. She enjoys channeling her inner momma while chronicling her daily adventures with her children.

City Centre Park

Live the Lifestyle PARTY HOST INCLU DED!

*Bowling *Playzone *Mini-Golf *Skating * Party Rooms

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GYMNASTICS Birthday Parties


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Our great instructors will treat you to an action packed two hours of fun and fitness in our great facility!




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• Free T-shirt for birthday child, invitations for up to 10 children



• The ONLY Inflatable Climbing Mountain with trampoline in town



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CIRCUS BIRTHDAY PARTIES! Celebrate your special day in a CIRCUS WAY! Experience life Under The Big Top!


Circus Birthday Parties for ages 4 and up • party size up to 14 participants • 60 min FUN circus class in circus warehouse • Beautiful Circus Tent Party Room available for cake/presents • aerial silk, hoop, trapeze, and more! • circus treat for all kids


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778-265-6414 March 2018  21

St. Patrick’s Palate


aint Patrick’s Day is an international holiday thanks to the number of Irish immigrants that have spread across the globe. However, on the west coast of the Canada—far from the Irish neighbourhoods of Montreal and New York—Saint Patrick’s day is not really about Ireland and its patron Saint; instead it’s a chance for university students to drink green beer.

But it doesn’t have to be that way. Like Cinco de Mayo, Chinese New Year and Diwali, Saint Patrick’s day is fun to celebrate with your family as way to learn about a different culture.

Some fun facts about Ireland:

• In the Irish flag, green is the colour of Ireland and orange represents the Unionists

Nanaimo & District Celebrates Schedule of arth M E o Events o r t 2018

of Northern Ireland. The stripe of white in the middle indicates peace. • Saint Patrick is said to have banished all snakes from Ireland. • Though most everyone in Ireland now speaks English, Gaelic is their national language. Similar to French in Canada, all signs, announcements and speeches need to be in both English and Gaelic. • The Secret of Kells is a kid-friendly movie that explores Celtic mythology and Irish medieval history. • The Dubliners got their start playing traditional music in Dublin pubs, which makes them the perfect background music for a Saint Patrick’s Day dinner. It’s great to have children help out in the kitchen. All of these recipes are simple enough for older children to cook themselves. Younger children can help with chopping vegetables and stirring.

h nt

Wa te

* Please register in advance

2018 Water Day

“Nature for Water” Exploring nature-based solutions to the water challenges in the 21st century.

Saturday, March 10:

• Nile Creek Streamwalk Thursday, March 22:

• Nanaimo River Watershed & Water Treatment Plant Tour * • Everyone Welcome Swim (Ravensong Pool) Saturday, March 24:

• WaterSmart Workshop Day (Qualicum) * • Earth Hour Starlight Skate (Cliff McNabb Arena) Tuesday, March 27:

• Englishman River Watershed Family Field Trip * Wednesday, March 28:

• Dive-In Theatre “Sponge Bob” (Nanaimo Aquatic Centre) Thursday, April 5:

• VIU Water Film Night Wednesday/Thursday, April 11/12:

• Nanaimo Water Stewardship Symposium Saturday, April 14:

For more details on the listed events & to register: #water2earth

• Nanaimo Rafting: River (am) & Estuary (pm) * Tuesday, April 17:

• Native Plant Walk * Saturday/Sunday, April 21 & 22:

• Streamkeepers Course (NALT) Saturday, April 21:


Drinking Water & Watershed Protection Program



• Earth Day Community Celebration (John Barsby Community School)

2018 Earth Day "What is the BUZZ about Cross Pollination?"

22  Island Parent Magazine

Irish Stew

This is a simple lamb stew that is a pub classic. Serve it with a slice of buttered soda bread for a warm and filling meal. 4 Tbsp flour 3 lbs of lamb 3 large carrots 3 large onions 1 lbs of potatoes 1⁄2 tsp thyme 11⁄2 cups of stock Salt and pepper to taste (about 2 tsp salt) 1. Preheat oven to 325˚F. 2. Chop lamb into 1" chunks. 3. Place flour in a bag and add in chunks of lamb and shake until the lamb is coated

with flour. Do this in batches so that all the lamb is well-coated. 4. Chop onions carrots and potatoes into large chunks. 5. Heat the stock.

Emillie Parrish Cooking With Kids

1. Hand crush the package of tea biscuits into small chunks. 2. Cream together the butter and sugar in a separate bowl. 3. Melt the chocolate in the microwave. Start by microwaving for 1 minute on high. Stir, then continue heating for 15 seconds at a time, until the chocolate is fully melted. 4. Add the creamed sugar and butter to the melted chocolate and mix until smooth. 5. Mix in the egg and stir to fully combine. 6. Gently fold in the biscuits and stir until the biscuits are fully coated in the chocolate mixture.

6. Place lamb on the bottom of a casserole dish. Layer the vegetables on top. Sprinkle in the thyme and pour the hot stock over top. 7. Cover and cook for 21⁄2 hours, then serve straight from the casserole dish.

Crispy Buns

Every children’s party in Ireland always has a platter of crispy buns to ensure that the children are sufficiently hyper by the end of the party. This recipe is so simple that a preschooler should be able to make this treat with adult supervision. 1 100g milk or dark chocolate bar 1 Tbsp of butter 3 cups of crispy rice cereal (name brand or a knock off)

7. Grease a 7" cake pan. Spread the chocolate biscuit mixture into the cake pan. Try to fill in all the gaps for a nice, even layer. 8. Top the cake with a layer of wax paper 1. Melt chocolate in a double boiler or in the microwave (see Chocolate Biscuit Cake and press down on the cake, trying to flatten it out as much as possible. for instructions) 9. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours before 2. Add the butter. 3. When the chocolate and butter is serving. melted, stir in the crispy rice cereal until all Optional Variations: the cereal is coated by chocolate. Some recipes for chocolate biscuit cake 4. Line a muffin tin with muffin liners. 5. Fill the muffin liners with the chocolate call for almonds, pistachios, pecans, raisins, dried cherries or dried figs. If you want to covered crispy rice cereal. 6. Allow to cool until firm before eating. try adding dried fruits and nuts, simply replace up to 1⁄4 cup of the biscuits with dried fruit and/or nuts. If you want to make your cake even more Chocolate Biscuit Cake Chocolate Biscuit Cake became popular fancy cake, then coat it in a layer of chocoafter Prince William chose it for his grooms late after it has chilled. Melt an additional cake. However, it is a cake that is readily 8 oz of dark chocolate in the microwave available at Farmer’s Markets, bakeries and (as described above). Then pour the melted chocolate over the cake, smoothing it out in most cafes in Ireland. with a spatula. 1 - 200g package of tea biscuits (about 2 cups of crushed biscuits) 1⁄2 cup butter Emillie Parrish loves having adventures with 1⁄2 cup sugar her two busy children. She lives in Victoria and 1⁄2 cup of dark chocolate (about 4 oz) is the author of the fermentation-based blog 1 egg

at Mattick’s Farm

The extraordinary toy shop. The natural way to play. Where learning is child's play!

115 - 5325 Cordova Bay Road Tel: 250-658-2721 |

Humeira Studios • Counselling Services: Individual & Groups • Day Camps: Pro-D days • Life Skills Training • Open Art Studio • Blissful Relaxation Program

Professional referrals required 250-889-1863 March 2018  23

Family Calendar

For calendar updates throughout the month visit

M a r c h Our Generous Sponsors




Nanaimo & Area

and to connect with other families and resources in the Cowichan Region. Free. chow-cooking-classes. 250-748-8506. jennifer@

Victoria & CRD

Saturday Breakfast Club 9:30am at Munchkinland Family Place Enjoy a parent and tot exploration and a Mother Good Morning Storytime Goose circle time. Songs, stories and breakfast. For TUESDAY 10:30am at Sidney/North Saanich Branch Library th Bring your littlest ones to the library for stories, families with children 6 years and younger. Free. songs, rhymes and movement. 0-5 years. Drop-in. 250-248-3252. Nanaimo & Area Free. 250-656-0944. Glow in the Dark Skate MONDAY th 6:30pm at Frank Crane Arena FRIDAY nd Skate in an atmosphere of dimmed lighting and Victoria & CRD special effects. Regular Admission. 250-756-5200. Nanaimo & Area Pro-D Day Swim Dad’s Night Out Skate 1:30pm at Panorama Recreation Home Learners Monthly Meetup 6:30pm at Oceanside Place Arena 1885 Forest Park Drive 1pm at Oliver Woods Community Centre Resource library, gym time, parent support, special Come for a fun-filled swim. $2. panoramarecreation. 830 W. Island Hwy Dads, bring the kids to enjoy a skate together on events throughout the year. $5/family drop in fee; ca. 250-656-7271. the pond. Sponsored by Building Learning Together. $20/year-long membership. nanaimocommunityFree. 250-248-3252. Pro-D Day Skate 1pm at Panorama Recreation 1885 Forest Park Drive WEDNESDAY th SATURDAY rd Come for a fun-filled skate. $2. panoramarecreation. ca. 250-656-7271. Victoria & CRD Victoria & CRD






Vic west toy library 9:30am at HighPoint Community Church 949 Fullerton Ave A volunteer run toy library where parents, grandparents or caregivers can borrow a variety of educational toys, games and play materials on a regular basis. Stock is for ages 1-7 yrs of age. $15/6 months or $30/year. 250-383-6290.

Mon to Fri – March 19-23 Mon to Thurs – March 26-29

Cowichan Valley Chow Down Family Cooking Class 4pm at Cowichan Green Community 360 Duncan St These classes are geared to families who face challenges accessing and preparing healthy meals and connecting with their community. The classes aim to share inexpensive meal plans that yield high nutritional value all while offering participants the opportunity to gain confidence in the kitchen Spring Break Camp Little Chefs Move & Groove Together Spring Into Action Sportball Multi-Sport Sportball Multi-Sport Spring Break Sports Camp Aspiring Young Artist Camp Pottery Camp Acting & Imrov Camp Piano and Singing Camp

K-Gr1 & Gr2-6 3-5 Years 3-5 Years 4-5 Years 3-5 Years 6-9 Years 6-12 Years 6-12 Years 9-12 Years 8-12 Years 7-12 Years

Emergency Preparedness Workshop 1pm at Victoria City Hall Antechamber Are you and your family prepared for an emergency such as a power outage, winter storm, earthquake or tsunami? Learn the hazards that can affect Victoria, what to include in your emergency kits, what you can do to protect your home from an earthquake, and how to reunite with your loved ones after a disaster. Free. 250-920-3373.

Rock Band Camp GROOVE Camp Yoga Camp Outdoor Adventure Camp Horseback Riding Camp Amazing Race: The Engineering of Travel Engineering For Kids-Minecraft: Traveling Into the Future

7-12 Years 9-12 Years 6-9 Years 8-16 Years 6-16 Years 8-12 Years 8-12 Years

Register Today! 250-478-8384 | 24  Island Parent Magazine




you must pre-register by March 8 as space is limited. 5 years and under. 250-478-3344.

Victoria & CRD


Tech Night 7pm at Saanich Centennial Branch Library Create and innovate with DigiLab’s tech toolkit, including Alienware laptops and Spheros. For ages 13-18. Register online or call for more information. Free. 250-940-GVPL (4875).




Victoria & CRD


Cowichan Valley Chow Down Family Cooking Class 4pm at Cowichan Green Community 360 Duncan St See MON 5 for details. Free. chow-cooking-classes. 250-748-8506. jennifer@


Rascally Raccoons 10am at Mill Hill Regional Park A CRD Regional Parks naturalist will lead you on a raccoon trail for a day in the life of these little rascals. Meet at information kiosk in parking lot off Atkins Ave. All ages. BC Transit #53. Free. parks. 250-478-3344. Nanaimo & Area Saturday Breakfast Club 9:30am at Munchkinland Family Place Enjoy a parent and tot exploration and a Mother Goose circle time. Songs, stories and breakfast. For families with children 6 years and younger. Free. 250-248-3252.





Victoria & CRD The Best Nest 10am at Francis/King Regional Park Spring is here and birds are busy. Bring your little ones and join a CRD Regional Parks naturalist to discover nests and look for homes of hummingbirds, robins and more. Children will experience life as a small bird through story time, a forest ramble, and a nest craft to take home. No fee for this program, but

Victoria & CRD

today’s Top 40 tunes? Get your bingo dabbers ready and play music bingo. panoramarecreation. ca. 250-656-7271.





Buck Brand offers more than 10 mouth-watering varieties of handpicked organic citrus, each delivering their own unique burst of flavour. Don’t miss out on these beauties, they’re here for a short time, exclusively at Thrifty Foods.


St. Patrick’s Day Storytime 10:30am at Juan de Fuca Branch Library Enjoy stories, songs and a simple craft to celebrate SATURDAY th the magic of fairies, wee folk and St. Patrick’s Day. For ages 3-5. Register online or call for more information. Victoria & CRD Free. 250-940-GVPL (4875). St. Patrick’s Day Storytime 10:30am at Central Branch Library THURSDAY th See WED 14 for details. For ages 3-5. Register online or call for more information. Free. Victoria & CRD 250-940-GVPL (4875). Story Club 3:30pm at Central Branch Library SUNDAY th Engage with other kids over books, games and crafts. Kids will listen to stories, share their thoughts and Victoria & CRD experiences, and enjoy group activities. Snacks provided. For ages 6-9. Register online or call for more Victoria Children’s Literature Roundtable information. Free. 250-940-GVPL (4875). 7pm at Saanich Centennial Branch Library Celebrate poetry month with author Tiffany Stone, who will play with words and perform her poetry. FRIDAY th Adults and children will be entertained and informed by her lively performance with puppets. There may Victoria & CRD be a poetry writing exercise as well. Held in partnership with the Greater Victoria Public Library, and is Teen Lounge: Music Bingo open to everyone. Free. 250-940-GVPL 6pm at Brentwood Teen Lounge Have an ear for music and know all the lyrics to (4875).

Bring home the sweet taste of SUNSHINE! with Buck Brand Organic Citrus.



Connect with us March 2018  25

Cowichan Valley Duncan Seedy Sunday 10am at Cowichan Tribes Si’em Lelum Gymnasium 5574 River Road, Duncan An event for local gardeners to source locally grown and ecologically sound seeds, garden starts, and perennials, Activities for children and a series of gardening workshops. $2/person. CGC members and children under the age of 13 free. 250-748-8506.




Victoria & CRD Mystery Creature 10:30am at Coles Bay Regional Park Solve riddles to find clues hidden along the trail with a CRD Regional Parks naturalist. Then piece the puzzle together to discover who the mystery creature is. Meet at information kiosk in parking lot off Inverness Rd. All ages. Free. 250-478-3344. Living Books 2:30pm at Nellie McClung Branch Library A workshop experience for the young reader, complete with favourite characters, crafts, role play

and movement activities. Experience full-body read- world of your imagination. For ages 10-12. Register ing. For ages 6-9. Register online or call for more online or call 250-940-GVPL (4875). Free. information. Free. 250-940-GVPL (4875). Nanaimo & Area World Storytelling Day 7pm at 1831 Fern St. Splish Splash Swim Myths, magic and mirth. Doors open at 7pm; sto- 1:30pm at Ravensong Aquatic Centre ries start at 7:30pm. Refreshments served. $5; $3/ 737 James St. members. 250-370-2964. A water adventure you don’t want to miss. Lifeguards are going to bring out all the pool toys for you to enjoy. From the rope swing to the snake, to the dino Cowichan Valley ribs, there will be water play for everyone. Regular admission. 250-752-5014. Chow Down Family Cooking Class 4pm at Cowichan Green Community WEDNESDAY st 360 Duncan St See MON 5 for details. Free. Victoria & CRD chow-cooking-classes. 250-748-8506. Buzz About Bees 11am at Francis/King Regional Park TUESDAY th A honey of a program fit for the royalty of the insect world. What’s the buzz about bees—are they really Victoria & CRD good dancers? Join CRD Parks for bee songs, bee crafts, and some bee food to taste. Meet at Francis/ Fun with Drawing and Watercolours King Nature Centre off Munn Rd. All ages. Free. crd. 2pm at Juan de Fuca Branch Library Join art teacher Sandi Henrich for a workshop using 250-478-3344. drawing and watercolour techniques to create a piece of art inspired by the spring season and the Explore Engineering 2pm at Saanich Centennial Branch Library



Which road will take you to your masters’ in Education Leadership at VIU? Weekends/Summer Option:

Six Friday evenings and six Saturdays per semester and one July residency.

Distance Option:

Study online and enjoy two brief summer residencies.

Full-time Option:

Study full-time at VIU for one year. Complete your degree in three semesters.

For more information contact Dr. Rachel Moll, Chair, Graduate Programs 26  Island Parent Magazine

Donna Nelson, 250.753.3245 local 2530

Join an engineer from Engineers and Geoscientists BC to learn more about what engineers do, and participate in an activity. For ages 9-12. Register online or call for more information. Free. 250-940-GVPL (4875). Intro to Arduino 3pm at Esquimalt Branch Library Learn about Arduino, an open-source platform that teaches coding and electronics through easy-to-use hardware and software. Find inspiration in some ready-made Arduino projects and learn to make your own in this two-part program. For ages 13-18. Register online or call 250-940-GVPL (4875). Free.




Victoria & CRD Puppet Show: Elephant and Piggie 10:30am at Sidney/North Saanich Branch Library Elephant and Piggie are in a play. Let the librarians entertain you with a puppet show based on the beloved characters created by author Mo Willems. After the show, stay and make a craft. Suitable for all ages. Everyone welcome. Free. 250-656-0944.

Join us this spring for inspiring art classes and camps in the AGGV Art Studio! Connect with cool new ideas, techniques and experiment with the creative process. Classes and camps are for a wide range of ages and are inspired by current Gallery exhibitions.

REGISTER TODAY AT: 250.384.4171 or in person at 1040 Moss Street For more information about art classes and camps, contact:

Living Books 2:30pm at Central Branch Library See MON 19 for details. For ages 6-9. Register online or call 250-940-GVPL (4875). Free. Lego at the Library 2:30pm at Nellie McClung Branch Library Listen to stories and have fun with the library’s Lego. For ages 7-10. Register online or call for more information. Free. 250-940-GVPL (4875).

Arts • Cooking • Hockey • Swimming • Sports • Tennis • Themes • & More!

Day Camps: Monday-Friday March 19-29

Art Inspired by Spring 2pm at Oak Bay Branch Library Join art teacher Sandi Henrich for a drawing and painting workshop to create colourful artwork inspired by the blossoming of the spring season. For ages 6-9. Register online or call for more information. Free. 250-940-GVPL (4875). Intro to Arduino 3pm at Esquimalt Branch Library Learn about Arduino, an open-source platform that teaches coding and electronics through easy-to-use hardware and software. Find inspiration in some ready-made Arduino projects and learn to make your own in this two-part program. For ages 13-18. Register online or call 250-940-GVPL (4875). Free. Nanaimo & Area World Water Day Swim 1:30pm at Ravensong Aquatic Centre

Oak Bay Recreation Centre 250-595-7946

Henderson Recreation Centre 250-370-7200

March 2018  27

There are over 1,000 foster children on Vancouver Island Can you help just one?

Do you have room in your home and in your heart to help one child? Can you include one more in that day at the beach, the Saturday popcorn and movie night, or the family dinner? There are children and youth on Vancouver Island right now who are not able to live with their families. They need a temporary home, a safe haven where they can stay while they and their families heal and become strong again. Together, we CAN make a difference FOSTER PARENT SUPPORT SERVICES SOCIETY

Call 1-888 1 8881888-922 922-8437 9228437

for more information or to register for an Information Session

For more information go to

737 James St. Join the swim leaders to celebrate World Water Day. Take part in games and activities that will teach you swim to survive skills. The inflatable toys, rope swing, and diving board will be available. Regular admission. 250-752-5014. Spring Break Peculiary Thrilling Thursdays 1pm at Nanaimo Aquatic Centre Burn off some of that Spring Break energy at the pool. Regular admission. 250-756-5200.




Victoria & CRD Alien Escape Room 2:30pm at Esquimalt Branch Library Aliens have taken over the school. You are locked in. Solve clues, puzzles and maps to escape and get to Spring Break. Free. 250-940-GVPL (4875). Explore Engineering 2pm at Bruce Hutchison Branch Library See WED 21 for details. For ages 9-12. Register online or call 250-940-GVPL (4875). Free. Little Lego at the Library 3:30pm at Bruce Hutchison Branch Library Listen to stories and have fun with the library’s Lego. For ages 4-6; parents and caregivers are encouraged to attend. Register online or call for more information. Free. 250-940-GVPL (4875).




Victoria & CRD


Pick up your copy of Island Parent at any Serious Coffee cafĂŠ

Spring into Summer Craft Sale & Market 10am at Wheeley Hall, Esquimalt United Church 500 Admirals Rd Juan de Fuca Arts & Crafts Guild presents its 3rd Annual Spring into Summer Craft Sale and Market. All items handmade locally. Free. Beginner Birding Basics 10am at Witty’s Lagoon Regional Park Have you ever wanted to bird watch? This is a great time of the year for birding, as courtship and territory disputes fill the air with song. Join a CRD Regional Parks naturalist to learn what to look for, and how to use binoculars and field guides. Bring binoculars if you have them. A spotting scope is provided. Meet at Witty’s Lagoon Nature Centre off Metchosin Rd. 8+ years. BC Transit #54 or #55. Free. parks. 250-478-3344.


28  Island Parent Magazine

Nanaimo & Area Starlight Skate 7pm at Nanaimo Ice Centre An opportunity to come out and enjoy soft light “stars” and passive LED glow lights. A great time for couples and families before dinner or that “night out” with friends. Regular admission. 250-756-5200.



TH and Sunday

Victoria & CRD




Victoria & CRD

Individual and Family Emergency Preparedness 1pm at Saanich Commonwealth Place 4636 Elk Lake Drive Emergency preparedness session for individuals and families. Free. 250-475-7140.




Victoria & CRD

• Binocular vision skills (including control of eye position)

Dr. Joslin, Dr. Morin & Associates Doctors of Optometry

Langford: #105–814 Goldstream Ave 250-474-4567 Sooke: #5–6726 West Coast Rd 250-642-4311

New Patients Welcome

Don’t forget to: • Talk with your child about the examination prior to the visit and encourage questions • Make an appointment early in the day so that your child is well rested. • Offer to look at websites such as that have online games to help familiarize them with what will happen during their appointment.

Serving the Families of Vancouver Island for Over 23 Years The Kiddies Store



Yumbox Original (6 compartments) • Five 1/2 cup portions • Dip portion Yumbox Panino (4 compartments) • One 2 cup portion • Two 1/2 cup portions • Dip portion • Leakproof silicone lid individually seals all compartments • Illustrated trays help you pack a balanced and healthy meal • Assorted colours available

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• Movement and tracking


Oat Cakes and Heartaches 7:30pm at 1831 Fern St.

A school-age child’s eyes are constantly in use in the classroom and at play. For school-age children, several different visual skills must work together so they can see and understand clearly:

• The ability to maintain focus and accurately at any distance

Community Palm Procession and Palm Sunday Service 10 am at St. Luke Cedar Hill Anglican Church Cedar Hill Cross Rd. at Cedar Hill Rd., Free. 250-477-6741. st.lukes@ Ugh! A Slug! 10am at Devonian Regional Park Be it a banana or licorice slug, stroll with a CRD Regional Parks naturalist to peek under fallen logs and leaves in search of these giant gastropods that are some of nature’s best recyclers. Meet at information kiosk in the parking lot off William Head Rd. All ages. BC Transit #54 or #55. Free. parks. 250-478-3344.

Did You Know?

• Clear vision (both distance and up close)


Fossil Fair 10am at Swan Lake Christmas Hill Nature Sanctuary 3873 Swan Lake Rd. Who lived here millions of years ago? Dinosaurs, trilobites, ammonites, enormous clams and sharks lived in the ancient tropical coral seas and palm tree forests that covered Vancouver Island. Paleontologists will share their personal fossil discoveries including many from this past year. Bring your family and your own fossils for identification. Kids can follow a scavenger hunt, or make fossil and dinosaur rubbings. Hosted by the Victoria Paleontological Society. By donation. 250-479-0211.


Experience the precision of customized vision

Larch St.

Entrance off Larch St.


March 2018  29

Scottish tales carried over the ocean. Ottawa storytellers Kathie Kompass and Mary Wiggin. $15. 250-370-2964.

Spring Break: March 19 – 28


Avian Antics Noon at Swan Lake Christmas Hill Nature Sanctuary 3873 Swan Lake Rd. Games, crafts, songs, and hands-on activities. Fun for the whole family. By donation. 250-479-0211.

June 25 – August 29 7:30am - 6:00pm

A field trip every day, sports, arts & crafts, and much more! 250250-383383-5125 | 912 Vancouver Street |

Cowichan Valley Chow Down Family Cooking Class 4pm at Cowichan Green Community 360 Duncan St See MON 5 for details. Free. chow-cooking-classes. 250-748-8506. jennifer@




Victoria & CRD Everybunny Loves Easter At Esquimalt and Langford Heritage Branch Libraries Hop over to the library for egg-citing stories, games and an egg-cellent craft. For ages 5-8. 10:30am, Esquimalt Branch; 2:30pm, Langford Heritage Branch. Free. Register online or call 250-940-GVPL (4875). Shadow Puppet Magic 10:30am at Nellie McClung Branch Library Light and shadow come together in enchanting ways in shadow puppet plays. Be awed by the beauty of this performance art, and then learn to create your own shadow puppets. For ages 6-9. Register online or call 250-940-GVPL (4875). Free.

Bring your family to our family. We take care of the necessary details so that you can rest easy in knowing your loved ones are taken care of.

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Dunstan Browne 30  Island Parent Magazine

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Bear Necessities 1pm at East Sooke Regional Park We can co-exist with these magnificent forest dwellers. Join a CRD Regional Parks naturalist to learn about the natural history of the black bear. Meet at kiosk in Aylard Farm parking lot off Beecher Bay Rd. 5+ years. Free. 250-478-3344. Snake Break at the Lake Noon at Swan Lake Christmas Hill Nature Sanctuary 3873 Swan Lake Rd. Games, crafts, songs, and hands-on activities. Includes live animals! Fun for the whole family. By donation. 250-479-0211. Nanaimo & Area Splish Splash Swim 1:30pm at Ravensong Aquatic Centre 737 James St.

A water adventure you don’t want to miss. Lifeguards are going to bring out all the pool toys for you to enjoy. From the rope swing to the snake, to the dino ribs, there will be water play for everyone. Regular admission. 250-752-5014.




Victoria & CRD Calling all Cottontails 10:30am at Central Branch Library Hop, hop, hop on over to the library for stories and songs about bunnies, chicks and everything that makes spring so egg-citing. Make a craft, too. For ages 3-5. Register online or call 250-940-GVPL (4875). Free. Alien Escape Room 2:30pm at Oak Bay Branch Library See FRI 23 for details. Free. 250-940-GVPL (4875). Lego at the Library 2:30pm at Juan de Fuca Branch Library See THURS 22. For ages 7-10. Register online or call for more information. Free. 250-940GVPL (4875). Poetry in Motion At Central and Nellie McClung Branch Libraries Artist Veronika McKee will lead the group to create modern dance choreography using a poem as the framework. Wear loose-fitting clothing and bring a water bottle. For ages 6-12. Register online or call for more information. 9:30am Central Branch; 2:30pm, Nellie McClung Branch. Free. 250-940-GVPL (4875). All that Crawl Noon at Swan Lake Christmas Hill Nature Sanctuary 3873 Swan Lake Rd. Games, crafts, songs, and hands-on activities. Fun for the whole family. By donation. 250-479-0211.



OUTDOOR PROGRAMS FOR YOUNG PEOPLE We teach outdoor and life skills through sea kayaking, canoeing, hiking and skiing trips. Sign-up for our summer overnight programs before March 31 and save. Register now on our website or call (250) 888-1622!

Join us for an extremly fun and exciting summer adventure! SYNCHRONIZED SWIMMING Spring Break CAMP March 26-29 ages 8-12 9am-4pm $195 water & land cap & shirt included

Saanich Commonwealth Place




Victoria & CRD

Meet LEGO Certified Professional builder, Robin Sather, and watch him build a giant scene using LEGO bricks!

Calling all Cottontails 10:30am at Oak Bay Branch Library See WED 28 for details. For ages 3-5. Register online or call 250-940-GVPL (4875). Free. Amazing Race 11am at Elk/Beaver Lake Regional Park Challenge yourself on this skill-testing and fun jaunt through the forest. Drop by any time between 11am and 2pm and get the scoop from a CRD Regional

Register online on February 19th at to be entered into the Tillicum LEGO Mania competition. As a contestant, you’ll have the opportunity to bring in your LEGO masterpiece featuring this year’s theme – Sports and Recreation. Visit us online for more details. SPONSORED BY: LEGO® is a trademark of the LEGO® Group of companies which does not directly sponsor, authorize or endorse this event.

March 2018  31

Parks naturalist. Meet at Beaver Lake Nature Centre off main parking lot. All ages. BC Transit #70 or #72. Free. 250-478-3344. Colour Me Ozobots 2pm at Esquimalt Branch Library Join the Science Venture team for a Codemakers workshop and explore the science of light and colour by programming mini Ozobot robots. For ages 8-12. Register online or call 250-940-GVPL (4875). Free. Wildflower Walk Noon at Swan Lake Christmas Hill Nature Sanctuary 3873 Swan Lake Rd. A hike up Christmas Hill leaving the Nature House at 12:15pm. Fun for the whole family. By donation. 250-479-0211. Nanaimo & Area Splish Splash Swim 1:30pm at Ravensong Aquatic Centre 737 James St. A water adventure you don’t want to miss. Lifeguards are going to bring out all the pool toys for you to enjoy. From the rope swing to the snake, to the dino ribs, there will be water play for everyone. Regular admission. 250-752-5014. Spring Break Peculiary Thrilling Thursdays 1pm at Nanaimo Aquatic Centre Burn off some of that Spring Break energy at the pool. Regular admission. 250-756-5200.




Victoria & CRD Esquimalt Clothing & Toy Exchange 10am at Wheeley Hall, Esquimalt United Church 500 Admirals Rd Esquimalt Clothing & Toy Exchange is a nonjudgemental, non-stressful, wheelchair & stroller friendly clothing exchange. Please bring a bag and take as much or as little as you want. Kids grow out of clothing so quickly. All sizes, all styles. Free. Traditional Indigenous Storytime 10am at Bruce Hutchison Branch Library Join Surrounded by Cedar Children and Family Services for a monthly storytelling group featuring traditional storytellers, art and songs. For families. Register online or call 250-940-GVPL (4875). Free.

32  Island Parent Magazine

Salmon Saturday 11am at Charters Intrepretive Centre 2895 Sooke River Road There’s something fishy going on. Drop by between 11am and 2pm to check out the demonstration hatchery, see salmon fry, explore along the river and enjoy the displays at the Centre with CRD Regional Parks naturalists. Meet at the Charters Interpretive Centre. All ages. Free. 250-478-3344.

Nanaimo & Area Saturday Breakfast Club 9:30-11:30am at Munchkinland Family Place, Parksville. Enjoy a parent and tot exploration and a Mother Goose circle time, plus songs, stories and breakfast. Saturdays until March 10. Free. Suitable for families with children 6 years and younger. 250-248-3252.


O n g oin g PRESCHOOL Victoria & CRD Baby Time At Greater Victoria Public Library Locations Learn songs, rhymes and fingerplays to use with your baby every day. Drop in. For babies 0-115 months and parents or caregiver. Check for dates, times and locations. Baby’s First Year Mondays 11:15am-12:45pm until June 25 at Saanich Commonwealth Place A drop-in community support for families with babies. Discuss, share and connect with other new parents. Chat about infant feeding, babywearing, safety, postpartum adjustment, sleep and more. Drop in at any point. Bring a blanket your your baby to lie on, or for tummy time. $2. 250-475-7600.

Victoria & Area Spring Break Pet-actular March 17-April 2 at Sidney/North Saanich Branch Library Your library is the purr-fect place to spend Spring Break. Come for a howling, yowling good time. Programs and activities to get your tail wagging. Museum Tots Saturdays 11am at Maritime Museum A weekly program introducing children 2-5 to the fun world of museum learning. New theme each week, allowing children to learn through crafts, play, games, song, and dance. $5/child. 250-385-4222.

FAMILY Victoria & CRD

Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Support Circles A safe, supportive place to meet others in a similar situation and to share information and resources. For information about groups near you, call 250Family Storytime 384-8042. Province-wide toll free information and At Greater Victoria Public Library Locations support line at 1-855-474-9777 or email grgline@ Fun-filled stories, songs, rhymes and puppets. Drop- in. For young children and their families; children under 3 must be accompanied by an adult. Check Parent Support Circles for dates, times and locations. Parenting isn’t always easy. Sometimes it helps to talk things through with other parents. At the Parent SupYoung Parent Weekly Drop-in port Services Society of BC, they believe that every Thursdays 10am-noon at Kiwanis Family Centre. parent is the expert of her/his own family. For more Come and enjoy a hot meal, socialize with other information about groups near you, call 250-384young parents, enjoy a kids’ craft, let your little one 8042 or 1-877-345-9444 or visit explore the fully equipped playroom, or have a look in the ‘free’ store for gently used children’s items Nanaimo & Area and household supplies. Staff available to help with information about relevant local resources, advo- Lions Free Skate cacy and counselling support, help with paperwork, Sundays noon-1:30pm at Frank Crane Arena, and parenting support. 250-382-1004. Nanaimo. Until March 25. 250-756-5200. Cowichan Valley Parksville Lion’s and Save-On-Foods Family Skate Sundays 12:15-1:45pm at Oceanside Place Arena Family Storytime at Cowichan Library, Duncan. Bring A great way to stay active as a family. Children must the whole family for stories, songs, rhymes and fun. be accompanied by an adult 19+. Pond hockey is For ages 0-5. Tuesdays 10:30-11:30am. 2687 James not available. Until March 11. Free. 250-248-3252. St.•

S T A G E S Performing Art School since1980

Call 250-384-3267 Email us at: Or visit our website:

n a D e m Co

s U h t i W ce

• Offering classes for Teens and Pre-Teens in Jazz, Ballet, Lyrical, Tap. Musical Theatre, Acrobatics & Hip Hop, in a non-competitive atmosphere. • Not sure which class to take? Try a Drop-In: No hassle, No Obligation.

March 2018  33

How to Get Rid of Pesky Lice Healthy Families, Happy Families

Child, Youth & Family Public Health South Island Health Units Esquimalt Gulf Islands

250-519-5311 250-539-3099

(toll-free number for office in Saanichton)

Peninsula 250-544-2400 Saanich 250-519-5100 Saltspring Island 250-538-4880 Sooke 250-642-5464 Victoria 250-388-2200 West Shore 250-519-3490

Central Island Health Units Duncan Ladysmith Lake Cowichan Nanaimo Nanaimo Princess Royal Parksville/ Qualicum

250-709-3050 250-755-3342 250-749-6878 250-755-3342 250-755-3342

Port Alberni Tofino

250-731-1315 250-725-4020


North Island Health Units Campbell River 250-850-2110 Courtenay 250-331-8520 Kyuquot Health Ctr 250-332-5289 ‘Namgis Health Ctr 250-974-5522 Port Hardy 250-902-6071


ead lice is a normal part of life and found everywhere, so your children will probably get lice at some point. Try not to google or ask about lice on social media because you might get the wrong information, even if people have the best intentions. It is important to get rid of lice and the best way to do this is by using the Wet Combing Method. For more information go to HealthLink BC File #06 Head Lice and

Did you Know?

• Lice can survive up to three days away from a person’s scalp. • Dandruff, nits (lice eggs) or shells can be mistaken for lice. • Hatched or empty egg shells do not give or spread lice. • Your child might not have an itchy scalp and still have lice • Live lice move very fast so they are hard to see if you don’t check often. • Lice can be spread by adults checking children one after the other at school. • You need to check your family at home weekly when your children are young. • When you check your family weekly you need to wash the comb in hot soapy water between people. • At home, you need to clean the supplies that you used for checking for lice in hot soapy water. • Hats, pillowcases, combs and brushes should be washed with hot and soapy water if you find live lice on your child. • Middle length hair transfers lice the most because many with long hair keep it back • To check for lice you should be using the Wet Combing Method. • You should use lice combs and not nit combs when using Wet Combing Method. Having head lice is a nuisance and hard to get rid of because children share clothes, hair clips/elastics and sit close to each other. This is why lice are most often found near the scalps of three to 12 year olds; they might seem gross but they don’t jump, fly or give you diseases—so don’t worry too much! Having head lice does not mean that a child is dirty, doesn’t clean themselves or is not being taken care of well. Sometimes kids do get lice over again and this can be annoying for everyone.

How do you Check for Lice?

1. Wash and rinse hair. 2. Put enough conditioner on the hair to cover the whole scalp (usually about two handfuls). 3. Use a wide-toothed comb to get tangles out. 4. Begin combing the head carefully with the lice comb. While you are combing over the head, keep the teeth of the comb touching the scalp at all times. 5. Checking can be done with the head forward over the sink, combing from the back of the head to the front, or from a sitting position going from the front of the head to the back. 6. Pull the comb through the hair in one stroke. If the comb tugs, add more conditioner. 7. After each stroke, wipe the comb on a paper towel and look for lice. 8. Make sure to comb the entire head, checking for lice after each stroke. If you find any lice, move onto the Wet Combing Method treatment process. 34  Island Parent Magazine

Wet Combing Method Treatment

1. With the conditioner still on, pull the comb through the hair in one stroke from the front to the back of the head. Keep the teeth in contact with the scalp for the entire stroke. 2. After each stroke, rinse the comb in

Morgan Fankboner C h i l d You th & Fami ly P u blic Hea lth

Matinees for KIDS! March 3 & 4 – 12:45 PM


March 10 & 11 – 12:30 pm


All Seats

March 17 & 18 – 12:45 pm



March 20, 21, 22 & 24, 25 – 12:30 pm


Happy Families, Healthy Families

March 27, 28, 29 & 31 & April 1 – 12:30 pm


warm water. Check the comb for lice before you pull it through the hair again to make sure you do not put lice back onto the head. 3. Keep combing over the entire head until you find no more lice.

.com Student Union Building, UVIC | 250-721-8365

Pirates 2: The Hidden Treasure Our favorite rascally pirates are back at work, seeking adventure and treasure on the high seas! But a mighty storm rolls in and the pirates find themselves shipwrecked on a deserted island – or is it? Will the King of the High “Cs” have a plan to save the day? Through the course of their musical adventures, they discover that real treasure is something they have plenty of…friendship and family. Join instructor Lindsay Suddaby for a fun-filled week of music theatre during Spring Break!

19–23 March 2018 (first week of Spring Break)

10am–4pm at the NCM. Pirates aged 8–14 are welcome! Early bird registration (if received by 1 March): $250 Registration (after 1 March): $350 Class size is limited, so register early! Register by phone at 250.754.4611 or in person at 375 Selby Street, Nanaimo 180118 SMUS_Ed_Ext-IslandParent_ad-4.75x3.pdf 1 1/19/2018 11:19:49 AM Please contact Shannon Maliteare (NCM Registrar) for more information:, 250.754.4611

4. Rinse the hair to remove conditioner. Leave the hair wet. 5. Untangle the hair with a wide-tooth comb to take out the knots. 6. Comb the whole head again with a lice comb, rinsing the comb after each stroke to make sure there are no more lice. 7. Keep repeating the steps every four days for a full two weeks to make sure that new lice are removed as the eggs hatch.

Morgan Fankboner, RN, BSN, MN, is a Public Health Nurse with Island Health. She is part of the Comprehensive School Health team on the South Island


PROGRAMS A wide range of programs for all kids in Victoria ages 5-15, including:

Game Mania Featuring lively group games and student-designed board games.

Passion Sports

Spring Break Elite Camp Five days of intensive basketball skill development.

Spring Time Chefs

Use fresh, local ingredients to make a range of nutritious and delicious recipes.

Visit our website for information on these and other programs:, or call the Education Extension office at 250-370-6120.

March 2018  35

Dreams, Desires & Daring adventures


very year since 1911, women have celebrated International Women’s Day (IWD) in March. After Russian women gained the right to vote in 1917 following a strike, the date was changed to March 8, which is the day we celebrate it still. In honour of IWD we will be looking at books about girls and women this month— specifically girls and women with dreams and aspirations, who go on adventures, and who use their imaginations to find the true potential in everything around them. The first book is The Pink Umbrella by Amélie Callot and illustrated by Geneviève Godbout (Tundra Books, 2018). This romantic tale, originally published in French, is about a young woman named Adele. Adele is the owner of The Polka-Dot Apron, a small café that is the heart of her village. Everyone loves going to visit and chat with Adele, but Adele has a problem. She really doesn’t like the rain, and struggles to get out of bed on really rainy days. As the story unfolds she finds rain gear that is just her size and in her favourite colour as someone decides to help her see the beauty in the rain. The pictures in The Pink Umbrella were drawn using pastels and coloured pencils. The images are full of emotion and help the reader feel like they are visiting Adele’s café and village, or walking through the tall grasses with Adele as she dances along the sea in the sunshine. For ages 6-9. The Branch by Mireille Messier and illustrated by Pierre Pratt (Kids Can Press, 2016) also features the weather. The deep vivid pictures in this tale help bring this young girl’s world to life as children follow the narrator’s attempt to save her favourite branch after it fell during an ice storm. Her mother wants to get rid of the branch, but the narrator pleads with her to let her keep it because “it wasn’t just a branch. It was my branch. The one I sat on, jumped from, played under. It was my castle, my spy base, my ship.” The narrator’s mother relents for a little while, so the narrator stands guard to keep her precious branch safe from the clean-up crews which is when her neighbour, Mr. Frank, notices her. With his help the

young girl is able to find her branch’s true potential so she can play with it forever. For ages 5-6. In Maggie McGillicuddy’s Eye for Trouble by Susan Hughes and illustrated by Brooke Kerrigan (Kids Can Press, 2016), Maggie McGillicuddy is also able to see the potential in the mundane. Although, unlike Mr. Frank who sees the potential for new creations, Maggie sees the potential for trouble. Armed with her knitting needles, Maggie is able to face down any danger, whether it’s the tiger creeping across her lawn or the eagle who is about to attack the letter carrier. After she saves her new neighbour Charlie from real danger, she lets him and Cody Dog share in her adventures as they protect their neighbourhood from thirsty elephants and hungry crocodiles. In order to help children understand what’s real, such as the car, and what’s imagined, like the snake, Hughes asks direct questions like “You see it there, don’t you?” For ages 4-8. Another book that is full of adventures is Lucy & Company by Marianne Dubuc (Kids Can Press, 2016). In these three stories Lucy goes on all sorts of adventures with her animal companions: Marcel the mouse, Henry the rabbit, Dot the turtle and Adrian the snail. Each of the stories helps children learn an important skill such as sharing with others or making new friends. The pictures and the stories can also bring back nostalgic memories from your own childhood, because Dubuc’s style feels reminiscent of Christopher Robin’s adventures with Winnie-the-Pooh. For ages 5-6. The final book for this month is not actually about a female character. If Found Please Return to Elise Gravel, was written and illustrated by award-winning illustrator Elise Gravel (Drawn and Quarterly, 2017). This book gives readers a glimpse into Gravel’s private black book where she creates new characters to love and practises her sketching. As your kids turn the pages, they will be encouraged to pick up a pencil and start drawing their own characters. Gravel even gives her readers some suggestions on

where they can start and teaches them how to draw hedgehogs in four steps. She also shares “a whole page of ugly drawing to prove it’s okay and that it’s not the end of the world” if all of your child’s sketches aren’t pretty. For ages 8 and up. This year’s theme for IWD is Press for Progress, and these books encourage boys and girls to do just that, whether it’s by


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Book Nook

602b Esquimalt Road Victoria, BC 250-217-9433

Open Daily 6am–11pm opening up their minds to imagination, like in Maggie McGullicudy’s Eye for Trouble, or showing them that it’s okay for girls to use construction equipment in The Branch, or encouraging them to make mistakes

Emmanuel Preschool 2121 Cedar Hill Cross Road (by entrance to UVic) Children learn through play in our all inclusive, non-denominational Christian preschool. Great facility; outdoor play area and a gym for rainy day play! Two teachers with ECE certifi cation plus an assistant teacher to help with special needs children. A competent and caring teaching team!

Class Opportunities for 2018–2019: Mon/Wed/Fri morning class Tues/Thurs morning class 5 mornings a week

Phone 250-598-0573

and draw ugly pictures in If Found Please Return to Elise Gravel. They all open up your children’s mind to seeing the world another way by normalizing women and girls as main characters.

Christina Van Starkenburg is a freelance writer and mother of two young boys. You can read about their adventures at thebookandbaby. com.

March 2018


Family Services Directory

Community Options for Children and Families offers recreational support groups for Children and Youth age 6-18 who have a brother or sister with a disability. The Sibshop Program allows children and youth to connect with peers who understand what This directory, sponsored by Thrifty Foods, features not for profit it is like to be a Sib. Sibkids (age 6-12) and Sibteens agencies and organizations serving children, youth and families. (age 13-18) are play and activity based designed to provide opportunity for participants to share in a comfortable and safe environment. For further 1Up, Victoria Single Parent Resource Centre (1- help finding a job? Need employees? Contact us info call 250-380-6363 or provides support, education and resources for FREE assistance! 9860 Third St. Sidney. 250for parents in the Greater Victoria area through 656-0134. End Dyslexia. Does your child have trouble reading free counselling, volunteer training, a mentoring or is behind in reading? Is your child bright, but is program for single moms, and a support group for Boys & Girls Club Services offer after-school not learning as quickly as you would like? Get ready dads, as well as a variety of integrated life skills and evening social, educational and recreational for September now with Summer Reading Camps and parenting courses which are open to the whole programming for children and youth at 5 locations from the convenience of your own home! Use community, with fees on a sliding scale. For single (Colwood, Langford, VicWest, Central Saanich and research-based programs with fast, lasting results parent members, the Centre provides free toys and Esquimalt) and summer camps both in Esquimalt while working with award-winning speech-language books, a clothing room and bread pantry. Donations and at our Outdoor Centre in Metchosin. We also of- pathologist, Marlene Lewis, who brings many years of gently-used clothing, small household items, and fer support to parents through our Parents Together of experience and proven results in improving readtoys are welcome. Hours: Mon., Tue., Thu., Fri.: 9–4, program and parent workshops. For more informa- ing for children, teens and adults. To learn more & Wednesdays: 12–7. Location: 602 Gorge Road tion on all programs and services visit or please visit or call 250-474-6368. East. Phone: 250-385-1114. call 250-384-9133. Family Services of Greater Victoria (formerly BC Beacon Community Services is a community- Canucks Autism Network (CAN) provides high- Families in Transition) is a non profit agency that has based, non-profit agency dedicated to helping quality, adapted sports, recreational and social been serving families since 1978. We provide a full people and improving lives on southern Vancouver programs for kids, teens and young adults living range of services to the whole family in supportIsland and the southern Gulf Islands. Beacon thrift with autism on Vancouver Island. Shawnigan Lake: ing their relationship and through separation and shops fund important LOCAL community services Multisport day camp, bike clinics and family camp. divorce. Counseling, mediation, legal information and programs. Beacon also offers: child, youth and Victoria: Swim, soccer, skate and physical literacy. and a range of group programs are available for family services (including the Peninsula Early Years Nanaimo: Swim and physical literacy. Family events children, youth and adults on a sliding fee scale. Call Centre and child care); counselling; employment take place throughout the year! Become a member us at 250-386-4331 or visit We can help. services and training for people of all ages; home for only $25/year at Call support care; volunteer services and opportunities; 604-685-4049, email or HappyBaby Sleep Solutions helps families creaffordable housing/care/supports for seniors and visit for more ate healthy sleep habits in babies and children so people with disabilities. For Home Support, please information. everyone is well rested and happy. Sukkie Sandhu, call 250-658-6407. For other programs: 250-656M.Ed., has worked with hundreds of families locally 0134. CHOICES Adoption & Counselling is a licensed, in Victoria and worldwide. Sukkie is a Registered professional, non-profit agency that provides Clinical Counsellor so the cost of a sleep consultaBeacon Community Services Employment services to adoptive parents, birth-parents, and tion may be covered under your extended medical Programs. Beacon Community Services offers a adoptees. CHOICES arranges adoptions domesti- plan. For more information visit happybabysleepfull menu of employment services on the Saanich cally and internationally. We are committed to pro- or call 250-857-1408 for a FREE Peninsula and Gulf Islands. We’ve been helping viding a comprehensive, client-centered adoption evaluation. Let’s get started! people find work since 1982! Our programs build on service which best meets the needs of everyone a person’s strengths and resolve barriers to finding in the adoption constellation. Please contact us at HeadWay Victoria Epilepsy & Parkinson’s Centre and keeping employment. We also work with our, or call 250-479-9811 supports families living with seizures by offering employer network to support job seekers. Need for further information. parent workshops three times a year, educational

38  Island Parent Magazine

presentations in schools and community groups as well as providing tutoring sessions and one-to-one professional consultations to help your child live up to their highest potential. Keep up to date with the latest research about treatments, lifestyle, and safety issues for your child. We can be reached at, or you can reach the Epilepsy Program Coordinator directly at 250-475-6677. Inter-Cultural Association of Greater Victoria (ICA) is a registered charity and nonprofit helping individuals and organizations to connect across cultures. Programs offered include immigrant and refugee services, parenting programs, employment services, interpretation and translation, diversity workshops and training, English language training, volunteer placements, youth programs and tutoring, seniors groups, and inter-cultural arts programming. Located at 930 Balmoral Road, 250-388-4728 info@,

Unlock the

potential With professional, one-on-one, tutoring. 1-on-1, In-Home, Professional Tutoring Math | Language Arts | Languages | Study Skills | Homework Support Call 250.544.1588 to learn more Enriching Young Minds in Victoria since 2002.

LDABC The Learning Curve (previously The Learning Disabilities Assn.) supports, educates and advocates for children with learning disabilities and related challenges. Individual and group support, education and consultation is available for children, youth, parents, caregivers and professionals. Please visit our website @ or call us for more information or to book an appointment: 250 370 9513. Power To Be inspires people living with barriers or disabilities to explore their limitless abilities through inclusive adventures rooted in nature. With programs for children, youth and adults, year-round adventures include kayaking, canoeing, camping, hiking and more. Visit or call 250385-2363 to learn more. Sooke-West Shore Early Years Centres provide information to families about children and family services, supports, child development and parenting. The Early Years Navigator will assist families with referral information for local early years programming, child care, public health, special needs intervention services, and social supports. The Sooke-West Shore Early Years Centres are hosted by Sooke Family Resource Society and located at the Child, Youth, and Family Centres in both Sooke and the West Shore and can be reached at 250217-9243. Additional information can be accessed at Victoria Immigrant and Refugee Centre Society (VIRCS) supports immigrants and refugees living in Greater Victoria. Services are free and include oneon-one counselling, parent education workshops, youth life skills classes, a preschool program, art therapy, language classes and academic support, employment help, computer classes and fun community events like free yoga, tai chi, dance and cooking classes. Visit us online at or phone 250-361-9433.

maryam morrison Photography

Maryam Morrison | | 250-217-9030 | Facebook: Maryam Morrison Photography

St. Joseph’s Elementary School

For 2018

St. Joseph’s Traditional Values Elementary School - CHEMAINUS


250-246-3191 March 2018  39

PresChool & ChIlD Care Directory ColWooD/lanGForD

Gonzales Co-op Preschool ...................... 250-727-1003 Children use imaginations in a learning through Play classroom and natural playground . Reggio-Emilia inspired, focus is on art, nature and music . Nurturing, highly qualified ECE and ECE assistant . Parent participation options . Allergy aware . gonzalescooppreschool .com .


Licenced group childcare for children ages 12 months to 5 years old. Open 6:30am-5:30pm. Leap Forward Dance School offers weekday and Saturday dance classes for children ages 2 and up. 2758 Peatt Road, Langford


Coastline Montessori Childcare .............. 250-881-6318 Experience an educational hands on learning environment for infants, toddlers and preschool age . half-day program offered . located in langford off latoria Rd . coastlinemontessori@shaw .ca .

CorDova Bay Carrot Seed Preschool ............................250-658-2331 Where children can discover, imagine, construct and learn through play . Wondrous natural playground . carrotseedpreschool .com . Cordova Bay Preschool........................... 250-658-3441 A bright and cheerful parent participation preschool with a philosophy of learning through play . 4 yr olds - M/W/F 9:151:15; 3 yr olds - T/Th 9:15-12:15 . cordovabaypreschool .org .

esQuImalt Ciara Early Childhood Centre ..................250-386-7369 Education and Fun hand in hand! Exceptional care for ages 1-5yrs . Inclusive nature inspired kindergarten readiness program with Christian values . Facebook .com/ CiaraEarlyChildhoodCentre . Island Kids Academy Esquimalt ..............250-381-2929 high quality child care (ages 1-5) . Enriched Curriculum . Includes Music Classes and Character Development using the Virtues Project . Part -time spaces available . Islandkids .ca . La Pré-Maternelle Appletree Preschool .....250-479-0292 A French Immersion Preschool Program. 30 months to school age . licensed Christian centre . prematernelleappletree .com .

Only seconds past luxurious Bear Mountain our highly respected outdoor program will not disappoint! Our “Nurture through Nature” facility is rooted from the Reggio-Emilia philosophies, allowing the children to use their environment as the “third teacher.” Located on 2 acres of forest land, your child will learn and grow in a natural surrounding of tress and wildlife! Newly expanded, we NOW have more spaces available for your Infant/ Toddlers and Pre-Kindergarten aged children. We use the trees from our own property to build the furniture and some of the toys in all three centres. The children enjoy yoga, music, Spanish, signlanguage and an outdoor classroom. In 2016, Lexie Biegun won the BC Provincial Gov’t award of Excellence for Child Care Providers. Please visit our Facebook page for current info and pics.

250-590-3603 Cub House waitlist: 778-432-3600

metChosIn Metchosin Cooperative Preschool ................................ Play Explore learn and Grow in beautiful rural Metchosin . Morning programs available for 3 and 4 year olds . Contact our ECEs at metchosinpreschool@gmail .com . West-Mont Montessori School ................250-474-2626 Exceptional preschool Montessori instruction in a beautiful natural environment . Ages 30 months and up . Providing a balanced approach to incorporating French, Music, Art and Nature . Stop by and experience what it is like to be part of a community devoted to the development of the whole child . Open house: Thursdays 9-11 am . west-mont .ca .

north saanICh In The Garden Childcare Centre ............. 250-654-0306 A GREAT PlACE TO GROW . Offering preschool, full day care, before and after school care for children aged 2 .5 to 12 years old . Open all year . Now offering Infant and Toddler Care .

oaK Bay Emmanuel Preschool ............................. 250-598-0573 Children learn through play in our non-denominational Christian preschool near uVic . Bright attractive setting . emmanuelpreschool .ca .

Child Care

Resource & Referral 40

Island Parent Magazine

Recreation Oak Bay ................................250-370-7200 Fully licensed, ECE Daycare, Preschool and Nature Preschool . Play based, child led learning . Afterschool care available .


• Half day and Full day Preschool Programs • Children’s learning is nurtured and supported through exploration, discovery, play and creative expression 3905 Haro Road, Victoria BC

250-477-3731 Camosun College Child Care Services........250-370-4880 Quality licensed facilities on both campuses providing children, newborn to 5 years, with rich early learning experiences in a learn through play environment . camosun .ca/childcare .

• Licensed 2.5 hr and 4 hr programs, flexible part-time classes • Qualified ECEs offer play-based programs that stimulate curiosity and imagination and support optimum growth and development. Supported spaces available. • Indoor and outdoor programming, community visitors and special activities provide opportunities for learning through play and exploration. 250-360-1148

Island Montessori House ....................250-592-4411 Inclusive, integrated and nurturing Preschool and After School Care programs . lovely rural setting with a focus on nature and outdoor environmental activities . islandmontessori .com . Lambrick Park Preschool & Childcare....... 250-477-8131 Gordon head’s parent-participation preschool and childcare center . Flexible hours M-F 9am-3pm & drop-ins offered . Play based learning and outdoor play . Allergy friendly . Celebrating 40 years . lambrickparkpreschool .ca .

Looking for child care? Need help with subsidy forms? Taking care of children? Need child care training? Your community’s best source of child care information and resources. Victoria & Gulf Islands: 250-382-7000 or 1-800-750-1868 Sooke: 250-642-5152 West Shore: 250-391-4324 Cowichan Valley: 250-746-4135 local 231 PacificCare (Ladysmith north): 250-756-2022 or 1-888-480-2273 Funded by the Province of BC

Oakcrest Preschool................................ 250-472-0668 A welcoming, nurturing environment with a large, bright facility. Learn through play with 2 caring ECEs.

Pre-School Junior Kindergarten 250-479-4532 Educational Excellence to the Glory of God Ready Set Grow Preschool....................... 250-472-1530 Inside Hillcrest Elm. in Gordon Head, we help children transition to Kindergarten. Licensed Preschool with highly qualified, warm ECE. St. Joseph’s Early Learning Centre.............. 250-479-1237 A Christian childcare centre offering daycare and preschool programs for 3-5 year olds. Children learn through playbased and emergent curriculum in a warm and nurturing environment. Wiseways Preschool & Daycare........... 250-477-1312 Established, quality, licensed, Christian centre for 3-5 year olds. Experienced ECEs, cheerful spacious facilities, large playground. Subsidized fees welcome. Call for a tour.

SIDNEY Positive Path Early Learning....................250-655-7244 Located near the library and Sidney School, our program has earned a stellar reputation for quality child care and is growing as fast as the children we care for. Space is available for your child to embark on a journey of active exploration and discovery, enjoying a natural outdoor playground and an expansive indoor learning space. Experienced educators foster a lifelong quest for knowledge and guide children with Christian values and virtues.


v Comprehensive programs for Preschool through Grade 8 v Delivering academic excellence through music, dance, drama and visual arts v Outstanding educators, locations and facilities 250.382.3533 Licenced group childcare for children ages 1 to 12 years old

Castleview Child Care............................. 250-595-5355 Learning Through Play & Discovery. Licensed non-profit, ECE staff. Since 1958. Morning or full-time care. Centennial Day Care............................... 250-386-6832 Exceptional childcare and education 35+ years. Nature inspired, play based program. NEW central, “green” building. Christ Church Cathedral Childcare and Junior Kindergarten.......................... 250-383-5132 ECE and Specialist teachers provide an outstanding all-day, licensed program for 3–5 year olds. Spacious, renovated facility with a huge backyard in Fairfield. Nightingale Preschool and Junior Kindergarten Ltd....................250-595-7544 We offer education through creativity and play, providing rich learning experiences through a well sourced and stimulating indoor and outdoor environment. Early years reading programme. Arts/Drama programme. Rainbow Express Daycare....................... 250-382-2314 A nurturing environment for children to learn through play and discovery in a natural setting. ECEs and specialist teachers. Close to city centre. Ross Bay Preschool.................................250-383-7445 Our positive and supportive program motivates children to learn, discover and grow through play. Contact us for a tour of our little blue school! The Sir James Douglas Playschool.......... 250-389-0500 Fun, creative and educational ECE program for 3-5 year olds to grow and develop life long skills. Come play and learn in our bright and modern centre in Fairfield. Victoria Montessori................................ 250-380-0534 Unique, innovative learning environment combining the best of Montessori and Learning Through Play. Open yr. round. 30mths–K.

VIEW ROYAL Island Kids Academy View Royal.............250-727-2929 High quality child care (ages 1-5). Enriched Curriculum. Includes Music Classes and Character Development using the Virtues Project. Part -time spaces available. View Royal Childcare...............................250-479-8067 Preschool structured, high quality childcare. Victoria Conservatory of Music classes. Part time spaces available. 2.5-5year olds. View Royal Preschool..............................250-479-8067 Exciting inclusive program in a safe and exceptional care environment. 3-5 year olds. Outside play and themes enrich this program. Full/part-time spaces available.


International Montessori Academy of Canada................................................. 250-737-1119 Offers an enriching environment for preschool children 2-4.9 years with potty training. Nurturing young minds, keeping the spirit free. Parkside Academy..................................... 250-746-1711 Providing high quality early learning and care from infancy to 12 years of age, in a stimulating, respectful, nurturing, nature based environment with fully educated and passionate early childhood educators. Visit or find us on Facebook. Queen Margaret’s School.......................... 250-746-4185 Early Childhood Education Program. Co-ed nurturing curriculum to develop the whole child. Healthy snacks and lunch provided. Queen of Angels Early Learning Centre...... 250-701-0433 Our Centre is a lively, happy place for 3-5 year olds where children are encouraged to be confident, independent learners in a nurturing and safe environment. Sunrise Waldorf School Preschool..............250-743-7253 In a warm environment, this nature and play-based program enlivens and nurtures the growing child.

Chemainus St. Joseph’s Preschool..............................250-246-3191 An enriching preschool program allowing children to grow as individuals in a safe and nurturing Christian environment.

Nanaimo Aspengrove School.................................. 250-618-2201 Aspengrove School in Nanaimo, an independent school offering Junior Kindergarten for 3 & 4 year olds. Play-based learning, rooted in the same International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum taught in our Kindergarten-Grade 12 classes.

Qualicum Beach Children’s Discovery Centre.....................250-752-4343 A nurturing, safe and creative learning environment. Licensed preschool, group care and out of school care. Early Childhood Educators. childrensdiscovery Little Star Children’s Centre.....................250-752-4554 Mother, Daughter owned and operated. Earth friendly preschool education inspired by nature. Infused with fun and creative daily yoga practices! Licensed group care. Enthusiastic ECE instructors.

Port Alberni John Paul II Catholic School.....................250-723-0637 “Where children grow and learn through play.” We provide a program that will inspire development physically, socially, emotionally, cognitively, creatively and spiritually.

Offering Before & After school care for Vic West Elementary School Open 6:30am–5:30pm 250-590-2722

949 Fullerton Ave

March 2018  41

Royal Visits


The Island’s Hidden Jewel

Visit us for Spring Break!


42  Island Parent Magazine

Open Year Round

Ranked #1 on TripAdvisor

ometimes, the Queen of England visits our house. The first time, Angus was five and we were reading Roald Dahl’s The BFG as our bedtime story. It is my firm belief that you can’t read aloud Roald Dahl unless you “do the voices”—which means a nasally, grating voice for the Grand High Witch (The Witches), the booming sneer of Ms. Trunchbull (Matilda) and of course a prim British accent for the Queen in The BFG. Angus loved the Queen from the first moment she arrived on the page—he was so taken with her that I could get him to do things he wasn’t particularly keen on as long as she factored into the plan. It was the summer we were trying to teach him to ride his bike, which involved a lot of bending over and turning the pedals ourselves as Angus complained. “I think,” I said one afternoon, “that we should bike around Vic High.” Angus flatly refused. “I think,” I tried again, “that we should bike around the castle and peer into all the windows to find the Queen’s bedroom.” And so we did. Angus was so excited about searching for the Queen that he asked to repeat this activity the next day, and the next. It was shortly thereafter that the Queen took a trip from her castle to visit Angus during bath time. I should first make it clear that I am not one of those parents that does Halloween. I find it stressful enough outfitting my child for that holiday and am unwilling to spend time and energy disguising myself. If Mike and I are invited to a costume party, I will immediately come up with a dozen suitable cop-outs. The Queen looks exactly like I do. The only difference between us is her rather bad British accent. The Queen’s visits correspond with me stepping out of the bathroom during bath time. Seconds later she appears to chat with Angus. Then she leaves and I come back. Sometimes it’s weeks between visits, and sometimes she comes a few days in a row. The novelty has not worn off as quickly as I imagined it would for Angus. Or for me. Because the thing is: Angus tells the Queen things he doesn’t tell his parents.

Angus talks a lot at home, but he has favourite topics. Currently his favourite topic is Guinness World Records: the different records that have been set in the past, which record book he discovered each nugget of information in, and whether these records are ones he intends to break himself. One day he will blow the biggest bubble gum bubble and become the world’s oldest

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bodybuilder. He wants the largest collec- Phone: 250-590-4460 tion of something—no current preference Grooming: 250-590-5803 Call 250-589-9995re Today: as to what—but I’ve told him he can’t begin Royal Oak Shoppinga,Cent #106–751 Goldstream Avenue BC V8Z 6L8 #104–4475 Viewmont Ave, Victori work on this record until he moves out of th4 ma our tiny townhouse. What he doesn’t like talking about is school. Every so often he’ll share a tidbit. He came home one afternoon and recounted the life story of Rosa Parks, he taught us how to say “Year of the Dog” in sign language. He Every month at you can enter to told us that in a recess game of “restaurant” win great prizes! he was fired for breaking a dish. But ask a question and he’ll generally shrug and Prizes include: change the topic. Believe me, I’ve tried a lot of questions, open-ended conversation starters like: “what was your favourite part of the day?” or “tell me something funny that happened.” No go. The Queen is a different story. She can One entry per family per week. Check out the prizes ask Angus who he played with at recess, and enter the contests by visiting and who he sat beside at lunch. She can ask him to explain the rules of a particular playground game. She can even ask him what he’s learning in math. All information provided to the Queen is provided willingly, and in great detail. I wish Angus was as communicative with Furever Clean....................37 Saanich Recreation..............3 Toying Around................... 23 Art Gallery of me as he is with the Queen of England. I Greater Victoria.............27 Glenlyon Norfolk School.... 10 School District #62............ 19 Vancouver Island wish that when I asked him what he was Psychological Services....9 Blue Vista.............................8 Horne Lake Caves.............42 Serious Coffee.................. 29 learning about in math he’d say something Victoria Acad. of Ballet...... 15 Brenda Bonde....................44 Humeira Studios............... 23 Skam School of other than “Ugh! Math!” I wish when I Performing Arts.............. 19 Victoria Bug Zoo............... 30 Brookes Westshore.............4 Kaleidoscope Theatre.........9 Browne & Associates........ 30 Kool & Child........................ 18 Smart Tutor Referrals........ 39 Victoria City Rowing Club...17 asked him how school was he wouldn’t Camp Pringle...................... 11 Lifestyles............................ 16 St. Joseph’s...................... IFC Victoria Conservatory........45 say: “Do you know the name of the man Lions Baseball Assoc...........6 St. Joseph’s Chemainus... 39 Victoria Symphony.............46 Camp Qwanoes who holds the most World Records?” But Cathedral School.............. 30 MacDonald Realty.............. 12 St. Margaret’s..................... 13 Victoria Synchro................. 31 VIHA...................................34 Cinecenta.......................... 35 Momease......................... IFC St. Michaels University at least I happen to have a royal ally in my School........................... 35 Vintage Retro Fair..............44 City of Victoria.................. IBC Mothering Touch..................7 hunt for information. All I can say is: long Nanaimo Conservatory..... 35 Stages........................33, IBC VIU..................................... 26 Cowichan Estuary live the Queen! Nature Centre................ 10 Nanaimo Museum.............. 12 Swan Lake..........................45 Water to Earth Month........ 22

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Laura Trunkey is the mother of the amazing Angus, and the author of the story collection Double Dutch (House of Anansi, 2016). Find her at

CRD......................................6 Discovery School............. IFC Dr. Joslin............................ 29 Emmanuel Preschool.........37 Foster Parent Support Services........................ 28

Oak & Orca...................16, 38 Pacific Christian............... IFC Pumpkin Pie Kids...............42 Recreation Oak Bay...........27 Royal BC Museum............... 11 Saanich Dental................... 18

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March 2018  43

Spring Is in the Air …and on the ground

A No more tears, no more tangles, no added chemicals. Nature’s Haircare for the entire family

s I write this article, it is still the gloomy dark days of January. It’s been pouring rain for the last week, the skies are still pitch black when I get up in the morning and dark by the time supper is on the table. It can be hard to believe that spring on the Island, with all the life and renewal that comes with it, is just around the corner. In fact, by the time this article hits the stands, many of our native shrubs and perennials will be in full bloom! Christmas Hill, here in Saanich, is a feast for the eyes in early spring. If you’ve stopped by during the winter you’ll have noticed that the lower portion of the hill stays vibrantly green with a lush growth of

Next up is the dainty, purplish sheen of the Satin-flower who inspired some rather poetic words from L.J. Clark in 1973 “…a slope covered with these sprightly bells, sensitive to every whisper of wind, is one of the floral delights of early spring.” The cheery little purple heads do indeed bring a sense of hope and possibility as they appear among the brown and slumbering remnants of other grasses not yet awakened to spring. If you also notice some splashes of yellow accompanying the Satin-flower, you are likely seeing the aptly named Spring-gold, another gem in the native flower collection. Then the carpets of white take front and centre stage. These showy, large petals, arch

ferns, mainly licorice ferns. These will turn brown and wither as the days get warmer and drier, giving way to the many native perennials that burst out of the ground with their colourful spring show. There is actually quite a sequence to the performance with the earliest performers being the dainty, white, fairy-like flowers on the Indian plum shrubs. While lovely to look at, these little gems have a rather unusual—and somewhat unpleasant in my view—odor, being described as something between watermelon rind and cat urine. The flowers disappear to give way to small peach-coloured fruit which ripens to a bluish black. While tempting to sample, these little plums are quite bitter with a large pit, better left to the birds!

back to form an elegant bowed head with mottled pale green leaves around the base of the stem. One likely theory about the name, Fawn lily, comes from this mottling, much like the speckling on a new fawn’s tawny coat. In other areas you may also see some pink Fawn lilies. Finally, the show reaches its pinnacle with an explosion of bluish-purple from the Camas which has lain dormant since last summer when dry summer winds blew and rattled the dried seed heads to release their tiny treasures. Spring is the Camas’ time to shine with numerous bluish to purple flowers boldly emerging from one tall stem. While these days we mainly savour the visual delight provided by this lovely plant, it is important to note that the bulbs of the

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44  Island Parent Magazine

Camas were an important staple food for the many indigenous peoples of our area and even beyond, as it was traded outside our region. It’s important to note that not all the performers who appear on Christmas Hill

Renee Cenerini Nature Notes are welcome. Some introduced and invasive species also come onto the scene and must be dealt with in order to prevent a total takeover. These uninvited players include Scotch broom, English ivy, Spurge-laurel and Common periwinkle to name just a few. Rest assured that the staff and many

Each note, a new friend to play with

volunteers work hard to not let them steal the show. While the spring scene is spectacular, it is somewhat short. Many of these native plants have adapted to our dry summers by disappearing back underground, their bulbs lying dormant until next spring when the performance starts anew. So get out there and enjoy the show!

Renee Cenerini is the Program Manager at Swan Lake Christmas Hill nature sanctuary and is looking forward to leading a Wildflower Walk during spring break in March 2018 (and saying goodbye to the winter blahs). Please see for more information.

Classical Roots Contemporary Reach



Inspire your child’s love for music with these fun, interactive, and educational classes. Age-specific sections embrace all facets of music education in an atmosphere of joy and discovery.

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VCM.BC.CA/FUN March 2018  45

Lower the Bar W hat were your expectations of parenting before you had kids? Did you scoff at the spoiled brats in the mall swearing your kids would never act this way? Did you believe with the right amount of patience, guidance and love that your kids would in turn listen to you, be caring and show consideration for others? If you still expect this now that you have kids, you might be feeling huge amounts of disappointment. It might help to know that your expectations

46  Island Parent Magazine

are not realistic no matter how amazing you are! Parents often set the bar too high and that in itself creates power struggles. There aren’t, and shouldn’t be parenting strategies that make children act like adults. Kids do not always listen, they do grumble about having to do chores and they do not feed the dog unless they are nagged. Normal kids don’t sort and organize their lives the way adults would like them to because it requires a more mature brain. As for high moral values, it takes all of childhood and then some to get to a place where they can sincerely treat others with genuine kindness. Accepting this can lead to more peace and a sense of appreciation rather than disappointment. Adjust your thinking and you might be surprised to discover that while kids will be kids, they are also more likely to cooperate when they feel encouraged and when they believe that they are measuring up. Challenge your thinking. My kids don’t listen. Are you actually looking for obedience? Is your speech aggressive? Do you nag? Nagging teaches kids not to listen to your pleasant tone of voice and instead trains them to wait

for the frustrated, angry voice. Do you talk too long or describe concepts that your kid can’t understand? My kids have a lousy attitude when it comes

Allison Rees Cut It Out! to helping out. What is your mood when you ask for help? Are you consistent with your expectations? Do you expect kids to respond cheerfully when asked? Perhaps you think you shouldn’t even have to ask, they should just do it. At some point that may happen but kids don’t normally think like this. They also prefer company if they are doing chores. Choices help a lot, too. Ironically, lowering the bar raises success. Kids feel motivated by the hope of success rather than a fear of failure. Adjust your thinking and you’ll feel better too.

LIFE Seminars has two books available, Sidestepping the Power Struggle and The Parent Child Connection. See

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Spring/Summer Registration opens March 9 Crystal Pool and Fitness Centre 2275 Quadra Street 250.361.0732

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March 2018 Island Parent  
March 2018 Island Parent  

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