muchmor Discover Your Canada
issue 35 Oct 08
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A warm welcome from Brandon Churchill - the polar bear capital of the world. Explore Swan Valley, Manitoba Costa del Sol - an ideal winter destination Travel insurance - plans for every need
British and living in Canada? What happens to your state pension?
Recipes - anyone for Pumpkin? Unusual jobs Do you have what it takes to be a cadet? Coping with grief Rural Nova Scotia Real life relocation stories - plus muchmor...... subscribe online at www.readmuchmor.com
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From the Editor We are now officially in the autumn or fall season and this means that we all need to start thinking about winter. In this issue we look at how you can prepare your home for winter by doing a few chores now. If the thought of winter fills you with horror then how about taking a look at our new travel section. This month we look at the Costa del Sol in Spain and next month we will be taking a look at the southern United States. If you are a snowbird, you will want to read this. Back to this month and we visit Manitoba with special features on Brandon and Swan Valley. These are great locations to visit or even to relocate to. One place in Manitoba you might consider for a visit but perhaps not as a relocation option is Churchill - the home of the polar bear. Read all about this fascinating place and of course these wonderful creatures. In our Working Life department we start a new section about unusual jobs. If you or someone you know has an unusual job why not get in touch so we can feature you in the future? We have a special feature for our readers who originate from the United Kingdom but now reside here in Canada. Do you know that will happen to your UK state pension? We speak to Tony Bockman, Chairman of the Canadian Alliance of British Pensioners and the International Consortium of British Pensioners for important details about this. If you are one of our younger readers or a parent with children then you might want to read our article on the Canadian Cadets. This can be a terrific avenue for young adults to experience the role of the Canadian Forces without any costs to parents. You can choose Air, Army or Sea Cadets so as you can imagine there is plenty to keep you occupied. Well, I will keep you no longer. Read onâ€Ś.
Jane Toombes Editor
Contents Motoring 38 39
New cars on the block The mystery of the roundabout
Kidzone 40 43
Discover Canada 4 8
The polar bear capital of the world From a warm welcome to welcome home - Brandon, Manitoba Come explore the Swan Valley region
Do you have what it takes to be a cadet? Top kidsâ€Ś.
Moving to Canada 44 47 48 50 52
Your British state pension and living in Canada Have you talked to us lately? Immigration news update Rural living in Nova Scotia Real life - Playing catch up
Health & Wellness
54 55 55 56 57
The Costa del Sol, Spain
Lifestyle 24 26 29
Anyone for pumpkin? Are you living in the best place? Top Canadian...
Working Life 30 32 33
The slightly unusual The Power of Women Exchange 10 craziest excuses for being late
Travel insurance:plans for every need
Natural cures help for allergy treatment Smoking trends in Canada What is glutathione? Coping with grief Hair loss linked to thyroid disorders
Home & Garden 58 60 62 63
Tile offers a way to add personality to your home Million dollar homes Top wallpaper myths debunked Prepare your home now for the winter ahead
4 Discover Canada
The polar bear capital of the world A fantastic place to visit, Churchill, Manitoba will offer you an experience of a lifetime - the possibility of seeing polar bears in their natural environment.
Discover Canada 5 Hudson Bay coastline
The polar bear population in Churchill,
Ecophysiology are both large research centres located in the town. Manitoba of around 1,200 outnumbers the The population is split almost equally human population which according to the between white Canadians and Aboriginal 2006 census was just 923. Chipewan and Swampy Cree. There are also The town is one of the most southern a small number of Inuit in the area. English is areas where polar bears can exist year the main language spoken in the town. round. Because polar bears tend to live in Churchill was first used as a hunting area remote, inaccessible places, the fact that for early Inuit people and these sites can still they can be seen so easily in Churchill be seen at the Seahorse Gully site on makes it one of the best places in the world Churchill’s West Peninsula or along the to observe these remarkable creatures glacial kame at Twin Lakes. leading to its nickname of “Polar Bear In 1619 Jens Munck, a Danish navigator Capital of the World.” sailed to the area from Europe in two ships Churchill is located on the shores of with his crews. However, that winter was Hudson Bay and is connected to the rest of Canada only by rail or air. It was named after very hard on the team and only Munck and two of his crew survived (64 perished) and John Churchill the 3rd governor of the the following year they returned to Europe in Hudson Bay Company and the Duke of one of the ships. Marlborough. The town acts as a hub for In 1717 the Hudson’s Bay Company many Northern Manitoban communities and has a diverse economy. Tourism is one of the established a trading post along the Churchill River. There they built a stone main economies within the community, but fortress to secure control of the fur trade mining, forestry, trapping, transport and which was named Prince of Whales Fort. In fishing also play their roles. 1782 the French took over the undermanned Churchill is the main transportation hub fort but following a smallpox epidemic and a for the area with the busy Hudson Bay Rail Line, an airport and the only inland saltwater harsh winter the fort was deserted and the Churchill fur trade as good as ended. port in Canada. Many of the goods which Over a century later Churchill was once are needed in Canada’s far north come into again in demand and in the 1920’s the Churchill before being sent onto various destinations. The Churchill Northern Studies Hudson Bay Railroad and the Port of Churchill were constructed. This led to Centre and the Institute of Arctic
churchill becoming a major outpost almost overnight. In 1942 Fort Churchill was established by the United States Air Force and after WWII Canada and the United States jointly sponsored a training and experimental centre. During this period weapons and equipment were cold weather tested and cold weather fighting tactics took place. During the 1950’s the Churchill Rocket Research Range came into existence launching rockets and conducting experiments on the northern lights and the ionosphere. Over the next thirty years over 3,000 sounding rockets were launched. Fort Churchill was a thriving military community during the 1950’s and 60’s. The base was decommissioned in the mid 1960’s and is now the home of the Churchill Northern Studies Centre. The 1970’s saw a major redevelopment of Churchill with new facilities and the development of the tourism industry.
Tourism Tourism is one of the biggest industries in the area and most months of the year offer something special for visitors. Most visitors either fly in from Winnipeg or catch a train at Thompson and arrive by rail. You cannot drive to Churchill as it is only accessible by rail or air.
6 Discover Canada
Remember to pack the right clothing for your trip as the average winter temperatures are a mind-numbing -27℃ and in the summer months reach the dizzy heights of 12℃. During the summer months between May and August, Churchill is a mecca for bird watchers. Over 270 species have been recorded here such as the Pacific Loon, Horned Grebe, American Bittern, Tundra Swan, Blue-winged Teal, Northern Pintail, Northern Harrier, Osprey, Horned Lark and Yellow Warbler. During July and August thousands of Beluga Whales can be seen along the Churchill River as they arrive to calf. This is a major spectacle attracting tourist from all over the world. Various companies in the area run boat tours into the Churchill River allowing tourist to see the whales up close. Hudson Bay Helicopters offers several Beluga Whale tours and seeing a pod of whales from the air is an awesome sight. The Hudson Bay itself is part of Nunavut, not Manitoba and the indigenous population do still hunt the whales, however there are still nearly 30,000 Beluga Whales to be seen along these shores. If you especially adventurous you can kayak with the whales. The Beluga’s are very curious and friendly and are known to swim alongside kayaks so this gives the tourist the ideal opportunity to see these stunning creatures close by. If you want to get nearer still then how about snorkeling with the whales. Some companies offer this activity which allows for a unique experience for any tourist. During the winter months tourist look to the skies as the Aurora Borealis or Northern Lights dance across the sky. Although the Northern Lights can be seen all year round, the clear winter skies offer the best opportunities to see them. By getting away from other light pollution areas, including the moon you will have a much better opportunity to see them at the full glory. Because night photos are notoriously hard to capture it is recommended that you bring a tripod with your camera so that you can capture the phenomenon clearly. TIP: Digital cameras seem to capture better images of the Aurora than traditional film cameras. We have all seen the stunning photos of the Aurora Borealis but nothing compares to seeing this spectacular display in person.
However it is the months of October and November when over 12,000 tourist flock to Churchill to see the Polar Bears. During the winter the Hudson Bay freezes up and the bears make their way to the area to wait for the freeze which will then allow them to return to their hunting grounds and hunt for harp seals. A deserted beach known locally as Polar Bear Alley is a favorite for these big lumbering bears and many tour guides will take you along this route. The bears tend to bed down between the rugged rocks so never be tempted to venture here without an experienced guide. Many tours are available including the famous tundra buggy tours which allow tourist to board large modified busses and safely observe the Polar Bears. Be warned it is not unusual for the bears to come right up to the buggy or even climb the sides of the buggy. You can also take helicopter tours such as those offered by Hudson Bay Helicopters. There are several options available, but their most popular tour is a 60 minute tour to Cape Churchill where during October and November they can almost guarantee Polar Bear sightings. You may also get to see mouse, fox, seals and caribou. If you plan to visit Churchill at any time you are advised to book well in advance as accommodation and tours are limited. If you are planning a trip during Polar Bear season then booking at least a year in advance is advisable. Accommodation, tours, train seats and flights get booked quickly. It is also advisable to book through an organized package tour as these companies can book all parts of your trip together so you can be sure not to miss anything out. Whilst in Churchill you should check out the Eskimo Museum, one of the oldest museums in Manitoba. It was first set up in 1944, but has since grown and is now housed in a building that was purpose built in 1962. The museum has many artifact from Inuit life, some dating back over 3,500 years. Many items of Inuit art are displayed including over 850 carvings and sculptures. The museum is free to visit, but donations can be left which go directly to the operation of the museum. Cape Merry National Historic Site can be found to the west of Churchill and is managed by Parks Canada. Cape Merry was originally established as a fur trading post by the Hudson’s Bay Company in 1717 and is named after their deputy governor John Merry. You will see a cannon battery here where a stone wall used to protect
Polar bear tours
Discover Canada 7
Sign in Churchill cannon from enemy fire. It was set up to prevent enemy occupation of Cape Merry. The Cape has great views of the Churchill River and it is a great place to watch the Beluga Whales. Apart from the views it is also a great place for wildlife, especially birds. The Prince of Wales Fort, also managed by Parks Canada is another Hudson’s Bay Company trading post established in 1689. The Fort took over 40 years to build and is in the shape of a star. The outer walls are 11 metres thick and 6.5 metres high and originally forty cannon were mounted along its length. The Churchill Northern Studies Centre was established in 1976 and offers Learning Vacations for tourists. Several five-day courses are offered and are led by professional scientists and researchers. During the course you will learn about the culture, history and wildlife of Churchill. You will stay at the centre which is located 23 km outside of town in dormitory style accommodation. Programs include birding, arctic wildlife, beluga whales, botany, northern lights, astronomy and polar bears. You are advised to book early. Some other interesting things to see would include the ship wreck near Bird Cove a few km east of Churchill. The MV Ithica was a British steamship originally built in Quebec in 1922. On September 14th 1960 whilst traveling to the Rankin Inlet in Nunavut it encountered gale force winds and was grounded when the rudder broke.
Eskimo museum The wreck now sits for all to see surrounded by water when the tide is in but high and dry when out. If wrecks are your thing then you will also want to check out the crashed C46 aircraft which lies along Hudson Bay. She is called Miss Piggy because she carried huge amounts of cargo including pigs. The aircraft crash landed in 1979 and has since become a strange tourist attraction.
The Town of Churchill Whilst in the Churchill area you will want to know exactly what the town itself has to offer, after all this is where you will be staying. As you would expect there are a number of hotels and bed and breakfast establishments to cater to the thousands of tourists who visit every year. They vary in price and amenities so check that the place you plan to stay has the facilities you need such as Internet connection. There are also a number of restaurants and cafes to cater to most culinary tastes as well as bars for evening entertainment. The Town Centre Complex was completed in 1976 and is where you can catch a hockey game, go swimming or curling or take in a film at the theatre amongst other things. The complex is also home to the Town of Churchill municipal offices, a school and the hospital. If you want to shop whilst in the town then you will not be disappointed. Apart from shops that cater to the residents such as Home Hardware there are plenty of gift shops offering everything from jewellery to clothing, fur products to native arts.
Put your ad in front of 50,000 people for as little as $199 per month for quarter page advert Contact email@example.com or telephone 1-613-396-5531
As you can see whatever time of year you visit Churchill there will be plenty to keep you occupied - just don’t forget your camera!
Polar Bear Facts • Polar Bears are the largest land carnivores in the world. • The Polar Bear diet consists mainly of seals but they will eat Beluga Whales, walrus and other animals too. They are also partial to birds eggs. • Polar Bears have a layer of fat (blubber) up to 12 cm thick. • Polar Bears have two layers of fur to help with insulation against the cold. • Only pregnant female Polar Bears hibernate during the winter, other bears remain active. • Polar Bears are meticulous when cleaning themselves as wet and dirty fur offers poor protection against the cold. • Bears spend around 8 hours asleep in any 24 hour period, but also nap regularly particularly after eating. • The scientific name for Polar Bears is Ursus maritimus, which means "sea bear." • Polar bears can run as fast as 40 kilometers per hour, but only for short distances. • Adult males can weigh up to 1,500 pounds (680 kg) • Females weight between 330 and 550 pounds (150 - 250 kg). • Females start reproducing from around five years of age. • Polar Bear fur is not actually white, but transparent with a hollow core which reflects the light. • Polar Bears have black skin
8 Discover Canada
From a warm welcome to welcome home
Brandon in January
Close your eyes, picture a vibrant, growing city nestled in the scenic Assiniboine River valley, surrounded by alluring landscapes, rolling hills, enormous skies, quaint towns and unspoiled countryside. Welcome to Brandon, a city of promise, in which our children wish to stay and raise their own children. Brandon is a welcoming community of approximately 44,000 people that offers the opportunity and sophistication of metropolitan life minutes from quiet country living. As Manitoba’s second largest city, and the service centre for 180,000 people, Brandon boasts amenities, services, educational and employment opportunities generally found in much larger centres. Though Brandon presents all the diversity and conveniences of a larger centre, our primarily English speaking city has remained a close-knit community that looks out for one another. Located in the southwest corner of Manitoba, Brandon is within a short drive of Manitoba’s abundant natural landscapes, wildlife, rivers, lakes, parks and forests. With approximately 70% of Manitoba’s farmland located within a 100 km radius of Brandon, alluring landscapes are as much a part of Brandon as city lights. Brandon is near some of Canada’s most amazing natural attractions including The Spirit Sands, a prairie desert phenomenon, and the spectacular Riding Mountain National Park. Brandon covers an area of 75 km² and
is located at the junction of major highways and rail services providing access to Eastern and Western Canada, Northern Manitoba and the United States. Brandon lies 197 km west of Winnipeg and Manitoba’s International airport, 121 km east of the Saskatchewan border and 100 km north of the United States border. A low crime rate, affordable housing, clean water, fresh air, student oriented education systems, abundant recreational and cultural opportunities create an enviable quality of life for our residents. As a sports oriented city full of top-notch recreation facilities with everything from skiing to soccer to equestrian sports, a truly amazing community spirit is found throughout the City. Whether you are planning a visit, or considering relocating to Brandon, we would be happy to assist in making your plans. From a warm welcome to welcome home, you belong in Brandon.
Tourism / Events Brandon’s central location and reputation for hospitality create an ideal setting for hosting major events and serving as a hub for day trips within the region. With close to 1300 hotel and motel rooms, over 100 restaurants and a variety of attractions, including two Manitoba Star Attractions — the Riverbank Discovery Centre and the Commonwealth Air Training Plan Museum,
Brandon alone warrants a few days to explore. Brandon offers free outdoor musical performances during the summer months, a diverse offering of concerts at the Western
Brandon Facts Population June 2006: 41,511* Trading Area Population: 180,000 Median Age: 37* Median Family Income: $60,167* Number of Dwellings: 17,920* Number of Businesses: 2,000+ Average Unemployment Rate 2007: 5.1% New dwelling units 1999-2007: 2,369 MLS Residential Property Sales 2007: 1,191 Average rental vacancy rate 1999-2007: 1.0% Average House Price: $136,000 (2007 BREB)
10 Discover Canada
Fishing & Water Sports Manitoba Centennial Auditorium and is home to the Art Gallery of Southwestern Manitoba, featuring national and international exhibitions and works by regional artists. In addition to international and national events hosted frequently, Brandon offers numerous annual events that include the Dakota Nation Winter Festival, Lieutenant Governor’s Westman Regional Winter Festival, Brandon Jazz Festival, the Royal Manitoba Winter Fair, Manitoba Summer Fair, and the Brandon Folk Music and Art Festival to name a few. More information can be found at www.tourism.brandon.com.
Climate Brandon has four very distinct seasons that all offer their own unique beauty and recreational opportunities. The summer season ranges from May through September with daytime temperatures from 12ºC to 26ºC. The months of November through February usually have considerable amounts of snow and temperatures well below freezing. Snow usually arrives in November and disappears in April, although these times can vary. The area enjoys over 2,000 hours of sunshine per year.
Economy Brandon was destined to become the hub and service centre for Western Manitoba from its inception when it was selected as the divisional point for the Canadian Pacific Railway, a role that Brandon not only embraced but has excelled at. During its first
Housing year of existence, Brandon was often referred to as the “Wonder City of the Northwest” because of the rapidness of its development. Today, Brandon continues to be known as a city of opportunity that capitalizes on its unique strengths. With innovation and foresight driving the economy forward, Brandon has evolved from the early days as a service centre to a diversified and important contributor to the Manitoba economy. Today, Brandon continues to serve as the education, health, retail, service and entertainment centre for the southwest Manitoba region. Significant economic generators within the local economy include: farm fertilizer production, manufacturing, pork processing, metal fabrication, trucking as well as Federal, Provincial and Municipal government and higher education including a university, community college, emergency services college and private vocational colleges. Brandon is fortunate to have a varied manufacturing base. While the Agriculture community has a strong impact on manufacturing, products and services are diversified sufficiently to allow the economy to remain stable despite peaks and valleys in the farm economy. Brandon’s largest manufacturing employers are Maple Leaf Pork, Koch Fertilizer Canada, A.E. McKenzie Seed Company, Behlen Industries, Inventronics, Canexus, and Wyeth Organics.
Housing Manitoba’s housing costs are amongst the lowest in the country, which means that owning a home or condominium in Brandon
is easily within most people’s reach. In the first seven months of 2008, Brandon’s average house price was approximately $147,000. Brandon has a variety of housing options in all price ranges and types. For those that prefer to live in a rural setting, there are acreages, hobby farms and homes located minutes away from Brandon in the rural municipalities of Cornwallis and Elton. Brandon has close to 7,000 rental units of varying types including mobile homes, apartments, vertical townhouses that have their own entrances and a small yard, duplexes, which are two homes that share one common wall but otherwise are totally separate from one another, a limited supply of single family homes, all offering varying sizes and price ranges.
Health As a medical referral centre for Western Manitoba, the medical services available in Brandon are extensive. Manitoba is proud of its quality, public funded health care system available free of cost to all residents including landed immigrants, refugees and those on foreign worker permits provided they have a Manitoba Health card. The city also offers a full compliment of dentistry, eye care and rehabilitative services. The Brandon Regional Health Centre provides a full range of health related services for Brandon and Western Manitoba residents including a 24 hour, 7 day a week full service emergency department, acute care, outpatient care & clinics, extended care, ambulatory care, rehabilitation services and a full range of diagnostic services
Discover Canada 11
Brandonâ€™s Recreation Facility Inventory Athletic court (indoor)
Basketball courts (outdoor)
Bowling alleys (5 & 10 pin)
Cross country ski trails, groomed Curling rinks
Field hockey pitch
Fitness centres (indoor)
Indoor ice rinks
ambiance. Assiniboine Community College is home to the Manitoba Institute of Culinary Arts featuring a state-of-the-art teaching kitchen, Master classroom, majestic Grey Owl Dining Room and a Culinary Theatre. Manitoba Emergency Services College and private vocational schools are committed to meeting the learning needs and career aspirations of all students.
Indoor swimming pools
Outdoor ice rinks
Outdoor swimming pools
Pool Hall & Billiards
There are over twenty licensed daycares
Running track (outdoor)
and nursery school programs that provide care for children between 12 weeks and 12 years of age in Brandon. In addition to the licensed daycares and nursery schools, there are close to one hundred licensed home daycares.
Seasonal ice pads
Volleyball courts (outdoor)
Brandon University including standard and specialized X-rays, ultrasounds, electrocardiography, MRI and CT scanner and laboratory services. The Brandon Health Centre has 344 hospital beds and there are over 100 physicians and specialists with admitting privileges at the Health Centre. Several large family practice medical clinics offering specialties such as allergy, cardiology, general surgery, internal medicine, obstetrics, gynecology, orthopedics, nephrology, pediatrics, psychiatry, thoracic and vascular surgery, and urology are found throughout Brandon, along with smaller clinics, many of which offer walk in service. There are a variety of physicians welcoming new patients. Fire, police, ambulance, and medical air evacuation are all readily available within Brandon.
Education As the second largest city in Manitoba, Brandon offers excellent educational facilities that include a publicly funded school system, a University, several colleges and private vocational schools. In Manitoba post secondary education is not part of the publicly funded Manitoba Education System so students are responsible for their tuition and book costs. Brandon University offers graduate and undergraduate degrees in a personalized learning environment. The University is home to the renowned school of music and serves as a magnet for a diverse range of musical talent in the City. Many of the local musicians perform in several restaurants that have incorporated live music into their
Brandon has a diverse faith community with over 40 places of worship and over 20 organized religious affiliations. With Brandonâ€™s growing cultural diversity, several places of worship offer service in languages other than English.
Recreation and Leisure Brandon is a sports oriented city full of topnotch recreation facilities, Brandon has everything from skiing to soccer to equestrian sports. Additionally, the city is home to diverse arts and cultural offerings, featuring visual exhibits and drama and musical performances in a variety of genres.
Walking trails (paved) Waterslide indoor public
38 km 1
A diverse offering of concerts are available at the Western Manitoba Centennial Auditorium and the Art Gallery of Southwestern Manitoba features national and international exhibitions and works by regional artists. The city itself is great for the outdoor enthusiast with an extensive trail system that ranges from natural river bottom forest to paved, lit walkways and links to sports venues, downtown shopping and dining. The Assiniboine River Corridor stretches 17
12 Discover Canada Skating
km through Brandon and is the ideal setting for canoeing, water sports, fishing, picnic spots and a host of other activities. Multiple indoor fitness centres offering a full range of services and equipment as well as personalized trainers are located throughout the city for the convenience of residents. Several racquet ball and squash courts, an outdoor running track and numerous indoor and outdoor swimming pools including a waterslide and an Olympic sized pool are readily available in the city. Hiking and cycling are extremely popular in Brandon and the nearby Brandon Hills. Brandon offers a nice mix of man made and natural scenic trails perfect for walking, hiking, biking, rollerblading, horseback riding, skiing and snowshoeing. For those that are a little more adventurous, there a variety of more challenging recreational opportunities offered in Brandon; pilot lessons, parachute jumping, and an indoor rockclimbing wall to name a few. Golf is another sport that is extremely popular. Brandon offers multiple 9 and 18 hole golf courses and driving ranges, each offering it own distinctive feature or flare. For those that like a bit of variety, over 30 beautifully groomed golf courses are located in southwestern Manitoba, a short distance from Brandon.
Fun in the sun
Brandon street in fall
Services Flowers at the Pavilion
Brandon boasts an excellent array of shopping facilities with two major shopping centres that together offer shoppers over 100 shops and services, a power retail centre that offers over 30 shops and services including national chain box stores, chain department stores, and a mix of smaller unique boutiques and shops. The city is home to a variety of major grocery stores, health food outlets, butcher shops, florists and bakeries. Brandon has well over 100 restaurants ranging from fine dining experiences to casual patios and unique, cozy cafes, offering something for all tastes and budgets. There are seven different financial institutions represented in Brandon with 17 locations spread throughout the City.
At the end of the day, one of Brandonâ€™s greatest assets is the balance between profit and personal reward. Imagine taking no more than 15 minutes to get to and from work, no matter what time of day, or where you live in the city. Come for a visit, and you may decide that you belong in Brandon. By Brandon Economic Development
Jogging on Rosser Avenue
Resources The first website listed below contains a comprehensive relocation section as well as information on immigration and a multitude of useful links. www.econdev.brandon.ca www.brandon.ca www.tourism.brandon.com
Discover Canada 13
BELONG 4HE WAY YOU LIVE YOUR LIFE IS AS IMPORTANT TO YOU AS THE PEOPLE YOU SHARE IT WITH
ÀÊÜ>ÀÊÜiViÊÌÊÜiViÊ i]Ê ÞÕÊLi}ÊÊ À>`°
14 Discover Canada
Come explore the Swan Valley Region of Manitoba
Discover Canada 15
Freedom… that is what you will find in the Swan Valley, Manitoba. Freedom to live your life in a safe, clean environment that provides a balanced lifestyle for discovering, experiencing and exploring. It’s also a wonderful place to visit with views to enjoy, activities to engage in, and friendly people to meet. Nestled in west-central Manitoba, between the heavily forested Duck and Porcupine Mountains, the Swan Valley region is surrounded by nature. It has abundant natural resources, fertile soils, a favourable micro-climate and a relaxing and rewarding quality of life. Located approximately 370 km (235 miles) from the capital city of Winnipeg, it offers the peacefulness of a rural area with urban amenities. The diverse geography of the Swan Valley covers over 5,500 km² (2,200 mi²), and ranges from rolling green hills and level fertile plains to rugged rock outcroppings and heavily forested prairie mountains. These mountains are home to the highest point in the Province of Manitoba; Baldy Mountain at 832 meters above sea level; the Swan Valley is at 335 meters. This varying landscape supports a variety of wildlife and vegetation. The region experiences a high rate of heat units meaning there is sunshine hours every day in every season. This results in hot summers and bright winter days. Built on a strong history of agriculture and forestry, modern amenities are plentiful in the Swan Valley. This allows the 12,000+
residents to experience both business and personal success. This spacious area also provides an invitation to live life to its fullest. From large yards to small hobby farms, you can choose what suits you and your family the best. Regardless of where you live, you will have the great outdoors at your doorstep and clear blue skies overhead. You are invited to come along on this narrative journey and to feel the energy of the people, land and the opportunities that wait newcomers and visitors alike.
A quiet community in the southern part of the region, the Village of Benito is a welcoming community with a health centre, public school, recreational facilities, industrial properties, a business community and easy access to the Duck Mountain Provincial Forest. The peaceful, community-minded Village of Bowsman is 16 km (9.6 miles) north of the Town of Swan River. It offers easy access to all parts of the region and has strong community involvement in many local organizations and projects such as the community-owned grocery store. The fertile land in the rural municipality Communities… experience the (RM) of Swan River surrounds these wonder communities and provides the production base for the majority of the agricultural land The Swan Valley is a ‘Community of in the region. Access to nature is a key Communities’ whose strong heritage is quality of the area and the RM hosts grounded in family values. Each area has its numerous lakes, trails and recreational sites own unique identity that it contributes to the including Thunder Hill Ski Lodge. overall character and wonderful quality of In the beautiful RM of Minitonas, life found here. successful grain and mixed farming Whether the charm of country-living or an operations produce a variety of crops in urban setting is what you are seeking, the addition to livestock. Many non-farm Swan Valley offers a balanced lifestyle with acreages offer a peaceful setting as the affordable and quality services to provide for district is adjacent to the Duck Mountain your everyday needs. Provincial Forest. Located in the heart of the Swan Valley is the Town of Swan River. As the largest Lifestyle… feel the energy community, it is a bustling centre offering business, service, health, educational and government services. It is home to a wide The well-maintained road system and trails range of organizations, and several annual in the mountains, provide easy access to events are held here throughout the year. shopping, recreation and nature. The region is also served by courier, daily bus, taxi
16 Discover Canada services and charter services through the local airport. Worship needs are served by the eight denominations and 20+ churches present in the Swan Valley. They offer numerous opportunities for fellowship and participation in the local communities. Housing costs are modest with the average 3-bedroom, 1,400 square foot home available for $80,000 to $90,000. Most urban homes have large yards for gardening and relaxing with friends. In the countryside, there are hobby farms in addition to agricultural-based properties. Health care is provided through a $33 million regional hospital constructed in 2005 and through other health facilities. Life flight service (air ambulance) is used to transport patients to centres outside of the area in extreme emergency situations. Several doctors, including specialists, look after the health needs of the residents along with dentists, optometrists, chiropractors and alternative health practitioners. There are excellent learning opportunities for both the young and mature student with public, private and adult education programs. This includes a French Immersion school, private Christian schools, access to post-secondary programs, and English as a Second Language courses. The high school serves the entire region and provides a unique and advanced learning environment as both an academic and technical school. In addition to traditional studies, the following courses are offered: business and marketing, food services, electrical, family and community services, cosmetology, environmental management, music, mechanics, computer technology, and visual communications. The weekly Star & Times keeps people informed on news and local events. Several radio stations can be heard in the area, including the local FM station which brings a local flair to the airwaves with a focus on Swan Valleyâ€™s people, places and happenings.
Recreationâ€Ś explore the beauty Nestled between two provincial forests, the local connection to nature is very strong. There is an abundance of pristine lakes, resulting from large blocks of shattered ice that were left behind from the wave of glacial ice that once filled the Swan Valley. Now people enjoy scuba diving, sandy beaches, boating, camping and numerous other activities in these ancient waters. There are also flowing rivers, lookout sites and trails to explore. The possibilities to discover and experience the beauty of this diverse area are endless. The golf course in the heart of the region is an excellent walking course that is open to the general public and is currently being expanded to 18 holes to add further enjoyment for the golfing enthusiast.
Canoeing is a great way to see the Swan Valley. Take a day to travel along one of the many canoe routes, and stop for a picnic lunch along a secluded beach. Enjoy the diversity of the area and go rock climbing in the morning, horseback riding in the afternoon, and berry picking in the evening as the sun slowly sets on the distant horizon. The clear night time sky allows fantastic views of the stars and during a clear fall evening you may be blessed and be able to watch the dancing lights of the aurora borealis (northern lights). The natural beauty of the area is the perfect backdrop for winter recreational activities. Hundreds of miles of groomed trails extend beyond the boundaries of the Swan Valley across rolling plains and through forested areas. These same trails can take you cross-country skiing to a favourite spot for a family bonfire. The picturesque Thunder Hill provides several downhill runs for both skiers and snowboarders while others simply enjoy a hot cup of cocoa while looking out over the peaceful Swan Valley from the Ski Lodge. The arenas in the area are also kept busy with figure skating, hockey, and recreational skating. Curling is another popular ice sport with youth to seniors keeping the curling rinks busy. For spectators, the Swan Valley Stampeders Junior A hockey team keeps the energetic fans cheering for their home team. Summer brings baseball, volleyball, basketball, swimming in one of the community pools and stock car racing. The new Rotary Sports Park was built to accommodate the growing interest in the high-spirited game of soccer. The trails at Thunder Hill host the Tread the Thunder mountain bikers during the warmer months. Other sports include martial arts, gymnastics, dance groups, and walking programs. The area is rich in parks and playgrounds. The Legion Park, found along the river that meanders through the Town of Swan River, has the highly popular Rotary Pathway to Living â€“ a year round walking path used by all ages. There are also many opportunities to meet great people and get involved in the community with organizations and clubs for all ages. There are service groups like the Rotary, Kinsmen, Lions, and Elks, and special interest organizations focusing on horticulture, community development, drama and art to name a few. Youth options include Air Cadets, 4-H clubs, sporting teams, gymnastics, dance, curling and a Boys & Girls club. No community is complete without its share of special events, and the Swan Valley is no exception. The most notable event is the exciting Northwest Roundup and Exhibition, a rodeo and fair held the third weekend in July that attracts people
Discover Canada 17
Northwest Roundup and Exhibition from across the country. There are trade shows, talent shows, a Women’s Wellness event, craft shows, farmer’s markets, harvest festival, parades, musical shows and so much more.
Business… achieve your dreams An independent region, the Swan Valley has a thriving business community of individually owned, franchised and chain store businesses offering a wide selection of goods and services. The region takes pride in being able to meet the needs of residents and visitors alike. The main trading area is 30,000+ who support the 400+ businesses present here. Availability to services is key to ensuring a high quality of life and once again, the Swan Valley delivers with an excellent selection of financial, legal, trades and other professional services. Several provincial and federal government departments also have regional offices in the area. For the entrepreneurial spirit looking for the excitement and freedom of owning a business, there are opportunities to purchase an existing business or to start and grow a new business that meets personal interests while filling consumer needs. Whether you require financing, property location assistance, staff training, or an opportunity to network with other businesses, the Swan Valley will support you in achieving your business dreams.
Industry… build your future A successful local economy built on agriculture and forestry was established by the first European settlers, with manufacturing and tourism following as natural developments.. The thriving agriculture sector plays an important role in the continued growth and economic health of the region. The natural forestation contributes to both soil and water conservation and to the range of rich soils which provide for excellent farm land. The area enjoys the second highest crop productivity in the province and has never experienced a total crop failure. The considerable amount of livestock in the Swan Valley and increasing value-added activity in u-pick farms and on-farm manufacturing, illustrates the area’s diversified base. Tremendous forest reserves in the region also contribute to the continued prosperity and economic health with more than 600 people employed in this industry. Key industry participants are Louisiana Pacific, producing oriented strand board, and Spruce Products Ltd., producing dimensional lumber. The non-timber forest products industry is also gaining strength with all natural products whose ingredients are found in the local forest. Manufacturing in the Swan Valley began with forest products and has expanded to
include metal fabrication, customized industrial and agricultural equipment, woodworking, cabinetry, and concrete products. Most products are destined for provincial, national and international markets including the United States, Australia and Europe. Historic success and future potential make development in this region a natural fit. Tourism is a growing sector as the region is able to offer visitors and residents amazing, untouched natural resources to be experienced at any time of the year. In addition to all the abundant nature mentioned earlier, there are breath-taking views, national parks, geo-caching sites, abundant flora, fauna and wildlife. For the adventurer interested in exploring some, or all of the region, a self-guided ecotourism tour book is available. The tourism booth is a treasure-trove of local information of things to see, so visit next time you happen by.
For more information on the Swan Valley, visit www.SwanRiverManitoba.com or contact the Swan Valley Enterprise Centre at info@SwanValleyCanada.com or call (204) 734-3417.
The Swan Valley… it’s the Natural Choice.
The Costa del Sol an ideal winter destination
We are now getting to that time of year when many Canadians think about where and how to spend winter. Whilst the vast majority of Canadians stay in the country, some decide to spend the harsh winter months in warmer climes. So, where to go? There are so many places these days that are relatively easy to get to that the choice can seem overwhelming. Many Canadians decide to go to Mexico, Arizona, Florida or the Caribbean, but there are many other beautiful worldwide locations to choose from. Many Europeans have already discovered the delights of southern Spain, particularly the Costa del Sol area. Extending along 150 kilometres of the Andalucia coast it is the year-round holiday destination for thousands of tourist every year. Renowned for its beautiful sandy beaches, stunning mountains and excellent weather the Costa del Sol has much to offer. If you want the hustle and bustle of the city then look no further than Malaga. If the beach resorts are calling out to you then Marbella, Fuengirola or Torremolinos may suit. There really is something for everyone from the laid-back traditional Spanish villages like Mijas to the hip and trendy Puerto Banus.
Getting there Malaga is the major international airport in the Costa del Sol, however there are
currently no direct flights from Canada. Depending on which airline you use you will have to connect in places such as Paris, Madrid or London. Flight times vary depending on route but expect at least 14 hours from Vancouver and 12 hours from Toronto. You may choose to book your travel itinerary independently or use a travel service. If you book independently you will need to take into account flights, transport once in Spain, accommodation, tours etc. If you want the easy option you could book a package which should include all these things.
Malaga Malaga is the capital of the Costa del Sol
and the largest city, home to around 600,000 people. Most visitors use Malaga as simply a place to land at the airport before traveling onto other destinations within the Costa. However, the city has a lot to offer the visitor and no visit to the Costa del Sol should be completed without at least one day spent in the city. The city is a contrast of old and new and one minute you will find yourself wandering down a narrow street surrounded by whitewashed houses and shops strewn with bougainvillea, the next moment in a busy When to go street surrounded by modern stores, boutiques and trendy cafes. One of the main considerations when In the centre of the city you will find the deciding when to visit the Costa del Sol is pedestrianized area known locally as the the weather. During the summer months the Larios. Here you will find all the designer temperatures rarely fall below 30℃ with very shops and boutiques you could wish for. At little rain fall. The winter months also see the top of the Larios is the Plaza de la very mild temperatures with the average Constitución, the main square where events January temperature being around 16℃. take place throughout the year. During the There are around 5 rainy days during Christmas period a huge Christmas tree is January on average. March and April will see erected with decorations and festivities. The temperatures rising to an average of 22℃ square is also the location of the Larios and less rain. Once you get into the summer Hotel which is where you need to be if you months (June - September) the temperatures are a star gazer - that’s the Hollywood type regularly reach the 30’s and rain is a rarity. of star! The months of October, November and Malaga’s most famous son is Pablo December will see temperatures slowly fall Picasso and you will find his work displayed from the mid 20’s to the high teens with in many galleries including the Museum of increased likelihood of a few rainy days. Fine Arts. You can also visit the house where he was born located in the Plaza de Mercad.
20 Travel Torremolinos
You can see details of his life and work and it is free to enter. The Picasso Museum houses 155 of Picasso’s works, many of which were donated by his daughter-in-law and grandson. The works are in chronological order and include the portrait of his first son: Paulo con gorro blanco (Paulo with a white cap). Malaga Cathedral is worth a visit whilst in the city. It was built between 1528 and 1782 and although it should have been built with two towers, due to lack of funding only one was actually built. Inside the cathedral you will see influences of both the Baroque and Renaissance styles with the choir stalls designed by Luis Ortiz. Pedro de Mena then carved the 40 statues of saints which sit behind the stalls. In total the cathedral has 15 chapels and 25 alters. There are many beautiful art works within the building including a weeping Madonna sculpture by Pedro de Mena. You will also see two seventeenth century pulpits made of pink stone which are quite spectacular. Another landmark in the city is the Plaza de Aduana, a fortress dating back to the 700’s. You will find the fortress itself as well as beautiful landscaped gardens with fountains and terraces offering stunning views of the harbour and city. You will not want to visit Malaga without exploring the Alcazaba. The city’s most ancient monument Teatro Romano is located here and dates back to 100 B.C. A part of its proscenium, an entrance gallery, traces of the orchestra and a large part of the cavea (16 metres tall and with a radius of 31 metres) have been preserved. Its stone was used for the construction of the Alcazaba and for the foundation of the Casa de la Cultura (House of Culture), a building that was torn down in 1995 to restore the ancient monument. The Alcazaba itself dates back to the eleventh century and it was used as a Muslim fortress before being conquered by the Christians and then serving as a residence for Catholic Monarchs and Felipe IV. It was designated a National Monument in 1931 when restoration began.
Malaga has many beaches and one of the most popular due to its location along the city front is Las Acacias Beach (Playa Las Acacias). The sand is yellow-grey and comes with many facilities including water sports, sun beds, showers, children’s playground, disabled access and life guards. La Malagueta Beach (Playa La Malagueta) is a man made beach in the centre of Malaga equipped with sun beds, showers, disabled access and life guards. The sand used to make this beach was imported from the Sahara Desert.
Marbella Known as Spain’s answer to St Tropez, Marbella is a luxurious resort surrounded by high quality golf courses and beautiful sandy beaches and the backdrop of the Sierra Blanca mountain range. One of the most popular places to visit is Old Town (Casco Antiguo) where you will find lots of small shops and boutiques surrounded by whitewashed houses. Old town is the location of Orange Square (La Plaza los Naranjos) which dates back to 1485 and has gardens of beautiful flowers and orange trees. In its centre is a bust of King Juan Carlos I. The Church of Saint Mary dominates the square and is home to the most important church organ built in Spain in the last 125 years. It is made up of 5,000 pewter, copper and wooden pipes, four manual keyboards of 56 notes and a 36 note pedal. Also located in the square is the Town Hall which was built in 1568 and contains the original Council Chambers. In the chambers you will see carved ceilings an murals dating back to 1572. If you want to chill out by the beach then Marbella has 26 km of beaches just for you. There is also the popular promenade which features many bars and cafes. Of the many beaches in Marbella Nagueles Beach (Playa Nagueles ) is very popular and is one of the largest. Here you will find 2,500 metres of grey sand beach flanked by the promenade. It has facilities such as water sports, sun
beds, showers, toilets, windsurfing and has life guards and police patrols. El Fontanilla Beach (Playa El Fontanilla) is one of the closest to Marbella town centre and is therefore very popular with tourists and locals alike. It has many facilities including sun beds, water sports, toilets, showers, life guards and disabled facilities. There are also plenty of beach front cafes to keep you supplied with drinks and snacks throughout the day. Another popular beach is Casablanca Beach (Playa Casablanca) which is 1,500 metres of golden sand located between Marbella and Puerto Banus. It has the same facilities as the other beaches mentioned. Golf is a very popular pastime in Marbella for both tourists and locals alike. There are fourteen golf courses in the municipality offering year round enjoyment. One of the best courses in the area is the Las Brisas Golf Club located in Nueva Andalucia just outside Marbella. Another top class golf course is the Flamingos Golf Resort found between Marbella and San Pedro with stunning scenery and views. One of the few pay and play courses available is the Santa Clara Golf Club close to Marbella town centre. If you want to play some golf whilst in Marbella, or indeed anywhere in the Costa del Sol then you are advised to book in advance, although many clubs do not allow booking more than seven days in advance.
Puerto Banus The town of Puerto Banus is located just west of Marbella and no visit to the Costa del Sol is complete without visiting this prestigious location. This is the place where the rich and famous come to be seen. Puerto Banus is a port and you will find hundreds of luxury yachts moored here. You will also have plenty of trendy bars, clubs and discos to visit along with many boutiques aimed at the wealthy clientele. The nightlife in the area is second to none and amongst the many restaurants, bars and clubs you will also find a casino and multiplex cinema.
Travel 21 Castillo de Colomares, Benalmádena
This is the ideal people watching location where you can just sit back and chill out watching the world go by. As with everything here the beaches and golf courses are second to none
Torremolinos Years ago Torremolinos was regarded as
the poor-mans Costa del Sol with its cheap and tacky image. It was often the destination for party-goers which led to its gradual decline in popularity with families and couples. These days however the town has been revitalized and has become a popular and attractive resort it its own right. The town is located just 12 km from Malaga and so is easy to get to from the airport. Torremolinos has been re-modeled and is now popular with both tourists and Spaniards. There is a great sea front with six spotlessly clean beaches with golden sand. In fact the beaches are the main attraction of this resort. One of the most popular beaches is Playamar beach where there are many beach front cafes, water sports, sun beds, showers, playgrounds, disabled access and life guards on duty. El Bajondillo Beach is another popular beach offering all the facilities of Playamar along with sailing, diving an beach volleyball. If you want a more laid back beach then you might choose La Carihuela Beach which connects Torremolinos with Benalmádena. It can be busy at peak periods it is also used by many locals including older men who frequent the beach to play dominos and boules. Again there are all the major facilities including beach front cafes, sun beds, water sports, disabled access and life guards. Shopping is also another good reason to visit Torremolinos where you will find a mixture of large stores and small shops. There is a pedestrian area called Calle San Miguel which forms the main artery of the town. Here you will find many shops and cafes. Another popular area is the district of El Bajondillo, an old fishing village. The pretty streets are lined with market style kiosks and restaurants. This is a good place to pick up souvenirs. Torremolinos does not have the historical sights associated with many of the towns on the Costa. Its main attractions are its beaches.
Benalmádena This popular town is just a few kilometres from Malaga and its 30,000 resident are boosted each year by an additional 70,000 tourists. The town is sandwiched between beautiful beaches and the Sierra de Mijas mountains and retains it natural charm
despite its bustling tourist trade. The Castillo de Colomares (Colomares Castle) is a popular tourist attraction that was built between 1987 and 1994 to commemorate the discovery of America. It is a very ornate and strange building merging many architectural styles together. It is surrounded by beautiful gardens and is adjacent to the Jardín de las Aguilas (Garden of the Eagles) where you can see regular falconry displays. La iglesia de Santo Domingo (the Santo Domingo church) is another popular attraction dating back to the seventeenth century. Unfortunately nothing of the original structure remains as it underwent such massive reconstruction but it is still an impressive building. It is also an excellent place to view the magnificent surroundings and sea views. The Museo Arqueológico (Archaeological Museum) has the best collection of preColumbian art in the whole of Europe. The beaches are another reason to visit Benalmádena and one of the most popular is Santa Ana Beach. This is a man-made beach with over 500 metres of shoreline and gets very busy in the summer. It has many facilities including water sports, sun beds, toilets, showers, disabled access, life guards and police patrols. Although not a large beach the Torre Bermeja Beach is well located and has lots of facilities for all the family. It has a children’s playground, football pitch, beach volleyball, watersports, windsurfing,sailing, fishing, sun beds, toilets, showers and life guards. It is also accessible for disabled visitors. Many cafes and bars surround the beach and it has a car park close by. If you want to try something a little different how about the Benalnatura Beach. This is a nudist beach accessible by the A7 road. It is set in a small cove giving it privacy but it can get very busy so you are advised to arrive early to get a spot on this small beach. At the other end of the culture scale is the amusement park called Tivoli World. The park has over 30 rides and attractions as well as live shows, music and restaurants. You can purchase a general ticket for €6 or for €12 you can purchase a Supertivolino ticket which allows unlimited access on to most rides (subject to age and height restrictions). Some activities require additional payment such as Go Karts, Bumper Boats, remote Controlled cars etc. Check out the website for more details.
Mijas Pueblo If you are in the Costa del Sol you should visit the mountain village of Mijas. It is known as one of the finest “white villages” in Andalucia and is full of old world charm. It sits over 400 metres above sea level offering spectacular views of the surrounding area. The beautiful narrow cobbled streets take you back in time and make it a favorite
Mijas Pueblo for artists and photographers. The village manages to retain much of the traditional Andalusian way of life and you will find many shops selling paintings, prints and pottery by local artists. The streets are set at different levels and you will have to navigate steps and slopes as you wander round the village. You should try to navigate as many streets as possible as they each have their own charm and quality about them. One of the best ways to get around is by local taxi. As with everything in Mijas this is not your usual taxi but a traditional Spanish donkey. You can either ride the donkey or choose to be pulled by the donkey in a small carriage. Plaza de la Paz or Peace Square is where you can relax and soak up the atmosphere at one of the local cafes or bars. Another popular chill-out spot is La Plaza de la Constitucion in the centre of Mijas. Here you will find a beautiful fountain carved by Galiano along with lots of cafes and shops. The Santuario de la Virgen de la Pena is a statue carved into the rock by Mercedarian friars in the seventeenth century and is a tribute to the patron saint of Mijas. It dates back to 1586 when it is reported that an image of the Virgin Mary appeared at this spot. Soon after, an image of the Virgin was discovered, hidden for 500 years in a recess in the tower. You also might want to visit the Bullring (Plaza de Toros) which was built in 1900. It is unusual in design and has an oval ring surrounded by a quadrangular exterior. Along the walls are unique ceramics depicting the fights of some of the best matadors to have performed here. There is also a Bullfighting Museum at the bullring.
Fuengirola Fuengirola is a very popular destination on the Costa del Sol being only 25 km from Malaga. It has evolved from a small fishing village to a large cosmopolitan metropolis. One of the main attractions in the city is the Castillo Sohail, a castle that has been destroyed and rebuilt many times over the centuries. It is a fortress surrounded by four square towers, all of which have been restored and converted into a large open air auditorium and museum. The monument stands on a hill and is a
Castillo Sohail Fuengirola huge part of the Fuengirola landscape. It is the location of many festivals and theatre productions during the summer months. At the very centre of Fuengirola is the parish church Nuestra Señora del Rosario Coronada located in the Plaza de la Constitución. The building has a very ornate interior as well as baroque facade and is a popular place for weddings. The History Museum or Museo de Historia houses many artifacts from past civilizations including the Visigoths, Carthaginians and Moors. You can also experience a virtual tour of the history of the Castillo Sohail as well as a look at the fishing history of the area. Fuengirola is well known for its beaches, indeed it has over 7 km of sandy beaches and a sweeping coastline. The area is also known for its water sports and amenities, so you will always be able to find something to suit your tastes. Las Gaviotas Beach is centrally located and gets very busy during the summer months. It has many facilities including a children’s play area, sun beds, toilets, showers, boat hire and local restaurants, cafes and bars. One of the most popular beaches is Los Boliches Beach which is also the largest in the area. It is centrally located so has all the amenities of town as well as sun beds, children’s area, water sports, volleyball, toilets, showers, disabled access and life guards. If shopping is more your thing then check out the area around Plaza de la Constitucion where you will find designer boutiques as well as popular chains. The sea front is also a good spot for the more expensive Spanish style clothing. One of the newest shopping attractions is the Miramar shopping and leisure centre, opposite Castillo Sohail. It is a large, three story mall offering everything from clothing to furniture. One of the most popular family attractions in Fuengirola is the zoo which has undergone extensive refurbishment. Once a small zoo with tiny cages for the animals it is now a “full-immersion zoo” giving the animals as near-to-natural habitats as possible. The changes were made after the zoo was taken over by the Rain Forest S.L. who spend over 8 million Euros renovating it over three years. The zoo has over 1,300 animals representing over 140 species.
Puente Nuevo bridge, Ronda
Ronda Ronda is one of the fastest growing towns in Andalusia but retains much of its old world charm and is quite beautiful. It is seated in the Sierra de Ronda mountains and has a spectacular 100 metre plunging river gorge El Tajo that splits the town in two. The magnificent Puente Nuevo bridge connects the two sides as do two other bridges. The Nuevo bridge, or new bridge was built in 1735 but was destroyed by flooding six years later. The rebuilding of the bridge started in 1751 and was completed in 1793. It was designed by Juan Martín de Aldehuela who received much praise for its design. Today the central arch of the bridge houses an interpretive centre dedicated to his work. Ronda is famous as the birthplace of modern bullfighting. Each year in September you can experience the Feria Goyesca where bullfighters and spectators dress in the manner of Goya’s sketches. The Plaza de Toros (bullring) in the town is now a museum dedicated to bullfighting. The town itself is divided into three distinct areas: the Roman area known as la Ciudad (the City), the barrio del Mercadillo (Mercadillo neighbourhood) which is the business district and the barrio de San Francisco (San Francisco neighbourhood) which is to the south and dates back to the sixteenth century. Because of how the town is structured the majority of homes do not have gardens and so locals and visitors alike use the Alameda del Tajo, a large park area for family gatherings and general relaxation.
Cueva de Nerja (Nerja Cave)
Ronda is full of architectural delights and is a must for history buffs. Other places of interest include the Baños de los Arabes (Arab baths) which is one of the best surviving examples of Arabic water baths in Spain built in the 11th century. Close to the bullring you will find the Merced Carmelite Convent where in the twelfth century, monks living here made up one of the most influential mendicant brotherhoods of the Middle Ages. In the mid 1400’s nuns also became affiliated with the order, eventually taking over and are still there today.
Nerja The town of Nerja is about 50 km from Malaga at the eastern tip of the area known as the Costa del Sol. It is flanked by the Sierra Almijara mountain range and the old quarter of town is virtually unchanged from centuries ago. In the heart of the town is the impressive Balcón de Europa or Balcony of Europe. It is a magnificent promenade on the edge of a towering cliff with sweeping panoramic views of the town, beaches and the Mediterranean sea. However it is the Cueva de Nerja (Nerja Cave) located just three kilometres from the town centre that tourists come to see. The cave was first discovered in 1959 and is the most important natural cave in the region. It holds a wealth of archaeological relics and some spectacular stalactite and stalagmite formations. Some of the paintings and prehistoric remains are over 20,000 years old. It
is designated a National Historic-Artistic Monument. There are four galleries open to the public: Belén (Bethlehem) where you will find ceramics and the Cromagnon Man museum, Fantasmas (Ghosts) so called due to the shapes formed by the stalactites, Ballet where music and dance festivals are held and Cataclismo (Cataclysm) where you can see the scattered pieces of the columns on the floor where an earthquake once destroyed it. It is in this chamber where you will find the largest natural column in the world. It is eighteen meters thick and 49 meters high, and is listed in the Guinness Book of Records. Over half a million visitors descend on the cave every year.
As you can see there are lots of options open to you when visiting the Costa del Sol. Whether you want a bustling city atmosphere or a laid-back beach or even prefer to explore some natural (or unnatural) wonders then this area of Spain has it all. It also has a great climate whatever time of year you choose to visit.
Useful websites: www.andalucia.com www.costadelsolspain.org www.visitcostadelsol.com
Anyone for pumpkin? Itâ€™s Thanksgiving time again and so we thought we would furnish you with a few pumpkin recipes to try out.
Pumpkin Soup Ingredients: 1420 ml chicken stock 9 g salt 980 g pumpkin puree 1 g chopped fresh parsley 160 g chopped onion 0.4 g chopped fresh thyme 1 clove garlic, minced 120 ml heavy whipping cream 5 whole black peppercorns
Heat stock, salt, pumpkin, onion, thyme, garlic, and peppercorns. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 30 minutes uncovered. Puree the soup in small batches (1 cup at a time) using a food processor or blender. Return to pan, and bring to a boil again. Reduce heat to low, and simmer for another 30 minutes, uncovered. Stir in heavy cream. Pour into soup bowls and garnish with fresh parsley.
Pumpkin Gingerbread Ingredients: 600 g sugar 235 ml vegetable oil 4 eggs 160 ml water 1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree 4 g ground ginger 2 g ground allspice 2 g ground cinnamon 2 g ground cloves 440 g all-purpose flour 9 g baking soda 9 g salt 2 g baking powder
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease two 9x5 inch loaf pans. In a large mixing, combine sugar, oil and eggs; beat until smooth. Add water and beat until well blended. Stir in pumpkin, ginger, allspice and cinnamon. In medium bowl, combine flour, soda, salt, and baking powder. Add dry ingredients to pumpkin mixture and blend just until all ingredients are mixed. Divide batter between prepared pans. Bake in preheated oven until toothpick comes out clean, about 1 hour.
Pumpkin Stew Ingredients: 905 g beef stew meat, cut into 1 inch cubes 45 ml vegetable oil, divided 235 ml water 3 large potatoes, peeled and cubed 4 carrots, sliced 1 large green bell pepper, chopped 4 cloves garlic, minced 1 onion, chopped 10 g salt 1 g ground black pepper 1 (14.5 ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes, chopped 15 g beef bouillon granules 1 sugar pumpkin
Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Place beef in the saucepan and cook until evenly brown. Mix in the water, potatoes, carrots, green bell pepper, garlic, onion, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer approximately 2 hours. Dissolve the bouillon into the beef mixture. Stir in the tomatoes. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Cut top off the pumpkin and remove seeds and pulp. Place the pumpkin in a heavy baking pan. Fill the pumpkin with the beef mixture. Brush outside of the pumpkin with remaining oil. Bake in the preheated oven 2 hours, or until tender. Serve the stew from the pumpkin, scraping out some of the pumpkin meat with each serving.
Pumpkin Pancakes Ingredients: 250 g all-purpose flour 40 g brown sugar 9 g baking powder 5 g baking soda 2 g ground allspice 2 g ground cinnamon 0.9 g ground ginger 3 g salt 355 ml milk 245 g pumpkin puree 1 egg 30 ml vegetable oil 30 ml vinegar
In a separate bowl, mix together the milk, pumpkin, egg, oil and vinegar. Combine the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, allspice, cinnamon, ginger and salt, stir into the pumpkin mixture just enough to combine. Heat a lightly oiled griddle or frying pan over medium high heat. Pour or scoop the batter onto the griddle, using approximately 1/4 cup for each pancake. Brown on both sides and serve hot.
Club 26Sequoia Lifestyle
Are you living in the best place?
Where are the best places to live in Canada?
Ottawa - the best place to live in Canada
27 Lifestyle Victoria British Columbia. The second best place to live in Canada
Top ten best places to live in Canada 1. Ottawa, Ontario 2. Victoria, British Columbia 3. Fredericton, New Brunswick 4. Kingston, Ontario 5. Levis, Quebec 6. Moncton, New Brunswick 7. Winnipeg, Manitoba 8. Burlington, Ontario 9. Halifax, Nova Scotia 10.Vancouver, British Columbia
There are many ways in which we define a “good place to live” and these reasons can vary from person to person and family to family. For instance a couple in their thirties with children will want a location where their children's needs are catered for: good schools, activities, sports etc as well as somewhere they can earn a good income. By contrast a retired couple may want peace and quiet, good weather, great healthcare, local amenities and so on. We all want something different from life so how do we begin to determine where the best places to live are? Moneysense recently produced their third annual list of Canada’s Best Places to Live report based on 154 communities throughout Canada. Each community was assessed on 16 different indicators with a maximum of 104 points available. The sixteen indicators included weather, real estate, household income, unemployment rates, crime rates, health care, education, transportation and growth rate of communities.
Although some communities fared better in some indicators than others, overall the winning community was our country's capital Ottawa (75 points). In second place was Victoria B.C. (67 points) and coming in third was Fredericton, NB (66 points). But before we all start arguing abut these findings lets look a little closer at the results.
Weather First we will look at the results regarding our weather. This was broken down into several areas, but when it comes to the number of days with rain or snow Okotoks in Alberta came in first place with 94.10 annual days with rain or snow. Both Cranbrook, British Columbia and Lethbridge, Alberta showed under 100 days of annual rain or snow. At the other end of the scale Prince Rupert, British Columbia came in last place with 239.70 days with rain or snow. St. John’s and Corner Brook in Newfoundland and Labrador and Terrance, B.C. all had over 200 days each.
Lifestyle 28 When we look at actual precipitation the least can be found in Whitehorse, Yukon with 267.40 ml/year and the most once again in Prince Rupert with 2,593.60 ml/yr. Quite a difference. If the cold bothers you then you might want to make your home in Powell River, B.C. where during the average year only 31.50 days go below 0â„ƒ. Vancouver comes in a close second with 35.40 days below zero. However if you love the cold then a move to Thompson, Manitoba might be on the cards where you can experience 239.90 days a year below zero.
Employment & Income Next we will look at the more fundamental aspects of living in different locations such as average annual income. If you want to earn lots of money then Wood Buffalo in Alberta could be the place for you. Here the average household income is $139,253. The other communities in the top five are all in Ontario: Oakville, Vaughan, Markham and Richmond Hill all with household incomes in excess of $111,000. Shawinigan in Quebec had the lowest household income of $46,519. Of the bottom five communities three are in Quebec and two in Nova Scotia. When we look at unemployment rates Alberta an Saskatchewan lead the pack with Estevan and Lloydminster in Saskatchewan in the lead with 0.80% and 2% respectively. Okotoks B.C. also averages 2% and Swift Current, SK and Brooks, Alberta averaging 2.2 and 2.6 percent. The highest average unemployment rate was in DolbeauMistassini in Quebec at 16.2%.
Housing A big factor when choosing somewhere to live is the cost of real estate. The cheapest average house prices were found in: 1. La Tuque, QC - $93,923 2. Bathhurst, NB - $97,078 3. Portage la Prairie, MB - $99,650 4. Yorkton, SK - 102,886 5. Timmins, ON - $108,827 The most expensive places to buy real estate were: 1. Canmore, AB - $780,964 2. Squarmish, BC - $586,726 3. Coquitlam, BC - $571,000 4. Burnaby, BC - $571,000 5. Richmond, BC - $571,000
Crime The highest crime rate was seen in SeptIles, Quebec with 6,724 crimes per 100,000 population. Following close behind was Thompson, Manitoba with 5,527 crimes per 100,000 and North Battleford, Saskatchewan with 5,407. By contrast a Quebec community also showed the lowest
crime rate of just 184 per 100,000 population in Saint-Hyacinthe. Petawawa and Centre Wellington in Ontario and Alma in Quebec all showed rates of under 400 crimes per 100,000 population.
Health These days the number of doctors available in a community can be a deciding factor when deciding where to live. Canada is forever being reported as having a shortage of doctors and this can be a particular concern for the elderly and those with children. The most doctors per thousand population was found in Grand FallsWindsor in Newfoundland and Labrador. This community enjoys 4.6 doctors per 1,000 population. Kingston Ontario came in second with 3.9 doctors and in third place Joliette, Quebec with 3.8 doctors per 1,000. The least number of doctors per 1,000 population was in Leamington, Ontario with just 0.6 and Brooks in Alberta with 0.7. Indeed 10 communities had under 1 doctor per 1,000 population: Petawawa ON, Norfolk ON, Estevan SK, Ingersoll ON, Wood Buffalo AB, Chatham-Kent ON, Port Hope ON and Kawartha Lakes ON.
Growth Between 2001 and 2006 the average population growth in Canada was 5.4%. Communities need to see good annual growth but equally too quick an increase can actually damage a community if it cannot keep up with amenities, infrastructure etc that the growth demands. Thus it was determined that a growth of around 7.4% was ideal and communities scored points depending on how far above or below they were from this level. The highest population growth was seen in Okotoks Alberta with a population gain of 46.7%. Brampton and Vaughan in Ontario both saw growth in the 30% range. Prince Rupert British Columbia had the lowest growth rate with a decline of -12.5% population in 2007.
Fredericton, New Brunswick
Halifax, Nova Scotia
For those looking to retire the criteria may be different from other people so MoneySense compiled a top ten list of places to retire to. Victoria, British Columbia came up top due to the great air quality, good weather, number of doctors and low crime rate. Ottawa came in second followed by Kingston ON, Vancouver BC, Quebec City, Quebec, Levis Quebec, Halifax NS, Joliette Quebec, London ON and Moncton NB.
Top Canadian… TV shows 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.
Fringe - 1.53 Canadian Idol (Mon) - 1.46 Bones - 1.45 Canadian Idol (Wed) - 1.37 C.S.I. New York - 1.30
6. 7. 8. 9. 10.
Flashpoint - 1.28 You Can Dance Canada - 1.24 CTV Evening News - 1.22 Law & Order: SVU - 1.21 Big Brother 10 (Thu) - 1.19
CD’s 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.
Death Magnetic, Metallica Not 4 Sale, Kardinal Offishall Viva La Vida, Coldplay Block, New Kids on the Block Lax, The Game
6. 7. 8. 9. 10.
Mama Mia, Soundtrack Little Bit Longer, Jonas Brothers Recession, Young Jeezy All Hope is Gone, Slipknot Enter The Beat, God Made Me Funky
DVD’s 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.
Sex and the City: The Movie (18A) Deception (14A) 88 Minutes (14A) Baby Mama (PG) Leathrheads (PG)
6. 7. 8. 9. 10.
Run Fatboy Run (PG) Made of Honor (PG) The Forbidden Kingdom (PG) Pathology (18A) The Love Guru (14A)
Fiction paperbacks 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.
Book of the Dead, Patricia Cornwell Water for Elephants, Sara Gruen The Book of Negroes, Lawrence Hill Late Nights on Air, Elizabeth Hay Doors Open, Ian Rankin
6. 7. 8. 9. 10.
Friend of the Devil, Peter Robinson Playing for Pizza, John Grisham Mister Pip, Lloyd Jones Standard of honor, Jack Whyte Compulsion, Jonathan Kellerman
Fiction hardbacks 1. The Flying Troutmans, Miriam Toews 2. The Gargoyle, Andrew Davidson 3. The Host, Stephanie Meyer 4. Devil Bones, Kathy Reichs 5. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, Burrows/Shaffer
6. Through Black Spruce, Joseph Boyden 7. The Other Queen, Philippa Gregory 8. Thousand Splendid Suns, khaled Hosseini 9. Coventry, Helen Humphreys 10. The Gypsy Morph, Terry Brooks
30 Working Life
The slightly unusual! This month we start a new series of articles where we take a look at some of the more unusual jobs that people have. So if you have an unusual job or even one that you feel is misunderstood then get in touch. We can feature you in a future issue. When you think of enthusiastic and fun people, Gayle Crosmaz-Brown certainly fits the bill. She is a bubbly woman who is passionate about her work and her enthusiasm for art, design and vintage clothing is very infectious. Her company Crosmaz & Brown Emporium sells vintage clothing and jewellery and here we find out more about her and her business. So Gayle, how did you get into this line of business?
I am a professional artist by trade, but have always, since childhood had an obsession with vintage clothing. I even wanted to be a fashion designer at the start of my art career. I ended up in the visual arts but maintained my love for fashion. Three years ago I opened a retail shop where I started to sell the family collection of vintage and retro
clothing and jewellery, as well as an online shopping web site, www.crosmazandbrown.com. I needed to expand my customer base, so I decided to expand my line, with One-Of-A-Kind Vintage Re-Design Jewellery. This is jewellery made with beads from vintage necklaces with some new beads and findings. Where do you get the clothing, accessories etc that you sell?
I buy my clothing and accessories by invitation, I am asked to come in and shop in other peoples closets or customers will bring me their favourite older and designer pieces to buy or trade. What sort of people buy your products?
All sorts of people buy my clothing, from
www.crosmazandbrown.com Vintage One-Of-A-Kind Re-Designed Jewellery Home Parties jewellery in the convenience of your own home. No last minute panic, no crowds and no worries! I will even gift wrap that special gift for you at no extra charge. Or add to your own jewellery collection. Book Your Own Jewellery Party and receive bonus discounts Party bookings in a 50 mile radius of Campbellford, ON
teens, to young adults, to middle age and seniors, there isn't one set type or age except a need to be creative and unique. I sell to performance artists, people going to a special or themed event or people just wanting to be different from the crowd.
Belleville "Art Plus" I also promote from my online shopping web site. How does your family support you?
My family is always there to help both physically and emotionally, they help me with events and fashion shows and are always on the look out for things for my shop. What is the most common misconception about your business?
The most common misconception about my business is that I am a thrift store. I actually carry only high quality and brand name items. The other misconception is that I am a costume shop, that my clothing is all so vintage that you would only wear it for themed events. But in fact, I carry a large variety of elegant and classy clothing for special events, such as weddings, Christmas parties or any other occasion where you need to dress up, for a fraction of the price. An example would be a $1,000$2,000 designer dress could sell for only $200 or $300. Where do you see your business in the future?
I see my business growing and employing
How do you promote your business?
several of my family members who want to be involved with the business full time. I want to get a larger selection of high-end designer labels to balance my middle-end labels and promoting the business in larger exclusive vintage clothing trade shows.
I promote my
Why not check out Crosmaz & Brown
business by putting on fashion shows, at least one per week. I have home parties to promote my jewellery, in my shop and in other peoples homes. I do trade shows, and business networking organizations, such as "Power Of Women Exchange" as well as consignments in an art gallery in
Emporium yourself. You can find the shop in the lovely town of Campbellford, Ontario or see all Gayle has to offer on her website www.crosmazandbrown.com Why not hold a jewellery party yourself and get quality re-designed jewellery at special prices before they make it onto Gayle’s website for general sale. Also, as the party holder you will receive special discounts. So if you are within 80 km (50 miles) of Campbellford, Ontario give Gayle a call on 1-705-653-0726.
Working Life 31
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Club 32Sequoia Working Life
POWE Chapters Bay of Quinte Meets at the Holiday Inn, Trenton on the 4th Tuesday of each month Registration from 11:00 am. Clarington Meets at Bobby C’s Dockside in Bowmanville on the 4th Tuesday of each month. Registration from 6:30 pm. Durham East Get together at the The Oshawa and District Shrine Club in Oshawa on the 1st Tuesday of each month. Registration from 11:00 am. Durham West The Forest Brook Community Church in Ajax is the location of this meeting on the 3rd Tuesday of each month with registration from 11:00 am. Kingston Join the Kingston chapter on the 2nd Tuesday of the month. Location and times TBC. Markham This chapter meets at Victoria Square Community Centre on the 2nd Tuesday of the month with registration at 11:00 am. Ottawa West Meet at City View United Church, Ottawa on the 1st Tuesday of each month. Registration starts at 11:00 am.
The Power of Women Exchange has announced a series of fall events which help women learn, network and meet new people. The events are titled POWE Fall Lunch and Learn Series and started at the end of September and will run through the next couple of months. During October you can attend the following Lunch and Learn events. Image Impacts Income will be held on October 9th between 12:00 - 1:30 pm at the POWE Boardroom, 110A Ash Street, Whitby, Ontario. Consider this…you have to make a choice. There are two gifts sitting on the table. One is beautifully wrapped in foil paper, topped with a wonderful gold bow and an abundance of trailing ribbons. The other gift is in a brown paper bag with the top scrunched up just enough that you can't see inside. You're not allowed to shake, rattle or peek. You must make the decision in seven seconds based solely on the appearance of the package. Be honest, which gift would you choose? Consider this…potential clients may be overlooking your “gifts” in that first seven seconds. Are you willing to take that chance? What if….you could give yourself an edge in your business by making a few simple changes? Creating professional credibility is critical to your bottom line! The fee for this event is just $10 for members or non-members. However members bringing a guest can attend for free. If you are free on October 16th between 12:00 - 1:30 pm you might want to attend the Learn Communication Styles to Instantly Connect event. This will be held at Elgin Mills Reception Centre in Markham, Ontario. This event will help you learn the communication style preferences to instantly connect with people. Learn to see others by recognizing body movement and other non verbal communication skills. Improve your own communication skills by understanding how you speak, move and interact with those around you. Another event titled Taking Your Business to the World will take place on October 23rd between 12:00 - 1:30 pm at the POWE Boardroom, 110A Ash Street, Whitby. This event is $10 for members and nonmembers, but once again any POWE member bringing a guest can attend for free. Learn how the world wide web levels the playing field between large and small
businesses. It creates opportunity to establish yourself as an expert in your field and build relationships with your clients – but only if you're there. Go beyond a static website and discover the easy, inexpensive and flexible options available to market your business. It's even possible to create new income streams for many businesses. Another important announcement is the confirmed date of the next POWE Conference. This will take place on March 21st 2009 at the Ajax Convention Centre. Full details of this event and all other POWE offerings can be found on their website at www.powe.ca.
POWE Vision Statement The Power of Women Exchange is a group dedicated to offering the tools necessary to assist women entrepreneurs, executives and business professionals to grow both professionally and personally. We accomplish this through our offering of innovative products, services and events to promote business growth that assists women in their journey of discovering success on their terms. POWE offers a safe, nurturing platform for women who are ready to define their path by combining who they are and what they have to offer others. POWE endeavors to be the vehicle for women to expand their businesses using resources provided while educating them that it is up to them to make it happen. POWE empowers women to achieve success. POWE reaches out in our communities to others who are less fortunate by volunteering time, fundraising and assistance where we can.
Working Life 33
10 craziest excuses for being late Rosemary Haefner, Vice President 1. Someone was following me, and I drove all around town trying to lose them. of Human Resources for 2. My dog dialed 911, and the police CareerBuilder.ca wanted to question me about what It's been one of those mornings. You overslept, spilled coffee on your shirt, the kids wouldn't wake up and you left your gym bag at home. Late for work and need an excuse? You're not alone. Sixteen percent of workers say they arrive late to work at least once a week, according to a recent CareerBuilder.com survey. Onein-four of all workers (25 per cent) admit to making up phony excuses to explain their tardiness. Reasons for coming in late varied from forgetting something at home to feeling sick to enduring a long commute. Thirty-one per cent of workers attributed their unpunctuality to traffic, 16 per cent blamed falling back asleep and 8 per cent cited getting their kids ready for school or day care as the main cause. Here are the top 10 examples of the most unusual excuses employees offered their managers for arriving late to work:
"really" happened. My girlfriend got mad and destroyed all of my undergarments. 4. I woke up and thought I was temporarily deaf. 5. I just wasn't "feelin' it" this morning. 6. I was up all night arguing with God. 7. A raccoon stole my work shoe off my porch. 8. I super-glued my eye thinking it was contact solution. 9. I was putting lotion on my face when my finger went up my nose causing a nosebleed. 10. A prostitute climbed into my car at a stop light, and I was afraid my wife would see her and think I was messing around... so I got out of the car. As explanations vary, so do men and women when it comes to being late for work. Males are less prone to tardiness with 41 per cent saying they've never been late for work in their current position compared to 37 per cent of females. Men are also less 3.
likely to lie about why they're late (22 per cent) -- while 28 per cent of women won't tell a fib, either. Most of us make up excuses in fear of repercussions. Forty-four per cent of hiring managers say they don't care if their employees are late as long as their work is completed on time and with good quality but others aren't so lenient. In fact, one-infive hiring managers say they would consider firing an employee if he/she arrives late two or three times in a given year. The key is to know your individual manager's expectations and take the time to learn your employer's culture and policies. Think you're being sly with the excuse you gave your boss? Guess again. While the majority of hiring managers don't typically question the validity of the reasons provided, 27 per cent say most of the time, they don't believe the excuses. Rosemary Haefner is the Vice President of Human Resources for CareerBuilder.com. She is an expert in recruitment trends and tactics, job seeker behavior, workplace issues, employee attitudes and HR initiatives.
Travel Insurance: plans for every need
By Heather Lang
Money 35 You and the family are outside of your home province on a ski trip and you have an accident that requires you to fly home via air ambulance. Who is going to get the rest of the family home? Who pays for the air ambulance? The pride of the family just got a scholarship over seas yipee ! Will regular travel insurance cover them for the years they will be away? Will they remain eligible for their provincial coverage because they have been out of the country too long? Your beach vacation is being interrupted by a hurricane and you are forced to evacuate. Who will help you and who will reimburse you for your lost vacation investment? You have recently moved from abroad to make Canada your new home. The house is fabulous, lots of space and a big back yard but your youngest son has just fallen out of that great tree house out back and it looks serious. The trip to emergency reveals your provincial health plan does not kick in for 20 more days - now what? The folks have come from the home country to see how your new life is going, but they don't have emergency medical coverage outside of their home. What happens if Gramps has a heart attack helping you shovel snow? The answer to all these questions is travel insurance ! From lost baggage to twisted ankles travel insurance has been there for countless Canadian travelers. Now travel insurance has evolved into a multifaceted range of products serving many diverse groups of people regardless of age or travel habits. Anyone traveling for business, vacation or study can find a plan to protect their health and possibly life savings. For the most part travel insurance falls into two main categories: Vacation (single or multi trip ) and Visitors to Canada or Gap insurance. “Don't leave home without it” is the famous tag line for a credit card company but nothing could be truer when it comes to vacation travel insurance. This type of insurance typically offers coverage in three main areas for single or multi trips. Baggage * basic protection against the cost of lost, stolen or damaged luggage usually has a set maximum so if your traveling with very expensive items best check the policy or add an "away from home" rider to your existing home property insurance. Trip cancellation or interruption * helps recover costs of trip cancelled or interrupted by problems at home such as a death in the family, fire or flood of home or if there is damage to your destination because of a natural disaster. Medical* pays for health costs outside of Canada in the event of illness, injury or death. This is perhaps the most important of the three as many people are misled or unaware of the gaps between the actual costs of medical services in other countries
and their coverage from provincial, credit card or employer group plans. A typical bill per day in a European hospital can cost as much as $6,000. A lengthy stay may end up costing you a significant portion of life or retirement savings. All provinces partially cover hospital stays, but have maximum amounts and vary with the type of services they will pay for. British Columbia maximum payout is $75 per day, Alberta $100, Saskatchewan $100, Manitoba $570, Ontario $400, Quebec $100. One common limitation on insurance provided by credit cards is the length of stay outside Canada. Employers plans may set family limits for trip cancellation and most expect you to pay the health care provider first then seek reimbursement. Some patients have been known to take out loans to pay for facilities they have stayed in overseas. Many people also don't realize the same limitations hold for travel in Canada between provinces. Your own provincial coverage may or may not cover all medical expenses occurred in another province. Expatriates who no longer qualify for their provincial coverage or foreigners who reside in Canada but don't qualify for the health insurance of their native country need a more comprehensive type of medical insurance that may or may not be covered by the typical vacation scenario. A top up or an additional policy for medical may be in your best interest. If you are not sure what you are covered for and what the limitations are call the plan provider and find out exactly what you are covered for. The cost of these types of coverages varies widely with all the different coverage types, benefit levels, age, duration of stay and in some cases medical condition. Many medical plans require full and accurate
disclosure in a medical questionnaire and pre-existing conditions are generally not covered. Most plans come with emergency assistance numbers and will help with any and all travel emergencies. You can't be insured against every situation and some insurers will not cover those over 80 years of age or of any age where certain medical conditions apply. If the federal government's Consular Affairs Bureau has issued a travel warning for a location you will not be covered. The same holds for illegal activities. Its vital to go over all the details of your policy before, during and after you purchase and to keep it with you at all times when traveling. Knowing the details of your coverage can mean the difference between a vacation postponed or no vacation at all. This leads us to the Gap or Visitors to Canada policies. These types of coverages typically fill in that gap period from arrival date of new immigrants to the date the provincial health coverage begins and of course visitors to Canada with no other coverage. Canadian hospitals are no cheaper than American or foreign institutions. A downtown Toronto hospital can easily charge $4,000 to $5,000 per day for routine inpatient care. Imagine the blow to a savings or retirement account for a more involved procedure requiring a longer stay in hospital. Coverage for this type of plan is offered in two or three main areas. Emergency medical *benefits provided can include hospital and physician bills, ambulance transportation, professional services such as chiropractor or physiotherapist, emergency dental, emergency return home, bedside companion travel /subsistence, return home of remains, childcare, meals, hotels, phone
36 Money calls , taxi etc. Trip interruption *refund of trip cost should it be interrupted due to a covered or defined event and you are required to return home Travel Accident *a benefit provided for accidental death or bodily injury, usually single or double dismemberment. Coverages are available in a range of amounts from $25,000 to $150,000. Deductibles offered can reduce the premium amount as can a family versus single purchase and some companies offer group discounts. Most companies will have plans to cover pre-existing medical conditions as well as plans that do not. Like other travel plans, premiums will be affected by age and duration of stay. It is best to purchase these types of plans well in advance of your date of arrival so that you are covered immediately. Most programs if purchased on arrival have a 48 hour to several days period before they become effective. One company offers a refund for days not used. For example new immigrants purchasing emergency medical cover for 90 days find out OHIP ( Ontario Health Insurance Program) starting at day 60, a refund for the unused 30 days is possible if no claims are made beforehand. It is important to note that in many emergency plans if something happens, your first call should be to the company provider ( after 911 ) as some will require claimants to pay the first 25% of claims if notified after the fact. As with vacation travel insurance it is wise to go over all the details of the policy before, during and after purchase. Now what happens if your travel agency or travel insurer suddenly goes out of business? In Canada, three provinces have special funds travelers can apply to for compensation of their losses if an agency goes bottoms up. The funds also cover losses if travel is cancelled because the travel provider such as an airline or a cruise line fails. British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec all have such funds and information on claims can be found on these web sites: British Columbia Ontario Quebec Other provinces in the Atlantic and the Prairie regions are looking at setting up similar funds. All life insurance companies in Canada authorized to sell life and travel policies are required to be members of Assuris. If an insurance company fails, holders of its
travel insurance will retain much or all of their protection. If a company becomes insolvent Assuris will automatically transfer your policy to a solvent one and you will be ensured coverage. There may be limits depending on the initial amount of benefit Assuris guarantees you will receive up to $60,000 or 85% of promised benefits, whichever is higher. There are lots of companies to chose from and most now offer the ease of online shopping and buying. Some companies offer unique services such as legal assistance, translation services, lost or stolen credit card replacement, e-mail or home message relay even concierge services (all 24/7) to book every thing from restaurants to tee times. Remember to carefully go over all the benefits offered as not all benefits are the same company to company and at different coverage levels. Keep in mind your travel destination, who will be with you and what you will be doing. Those traveling with a young family for a week will require different benefits from a business person going on a two day conference. Here are a few important travel tips to review before you go. • make a list of all identification, credit card numbers, travel itinerary and insurance information leave a copy at home and with a family member or close friend • make sure you have a valid (at least 6 months before return date) passport and carry it with you at all times • keep a pen and extra cash handy to fill out forms and pay for any extra arrival/ departure taxes or service fees • put bag tags on the outside and inside of every piece of luggage Now book that flight, buy your travel insurance and Bon Voyage! Heather Lang is an independent financial advisor in the Quinte Region of Ontario. Information found in this article provided by AIG Travel Guard, Manulife Travel Insurance and Investment Executives Money Planner 2008-2009 . For more information or if you have questions see www.cedarlanefinancial.com
Protect...Save...Grow Heather Lang, BSc, Agr Financial Advisor www.cedarlanefinancial.com Tel: 613 - 922 - 6699 Fax: 613 - 962 - 6736 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Independent Financial Services company servicing Bay of Quinte Region Eastern Ontario
Club 38Sequoia Motoring
New cars on the block We take a look at what the car manufacturers are promising us in the next few years. Audi
Audi have just launched their brand new A4 and a stunning car it is Following on from the but they are also promising a brand new SUV for late 2008/09 which will be called the Q5. They say it will be one of the most compact SUVâ€™s in its class and one of the most spacious. It will be a 5-seater all wheel drive vehicle. Details of full specs and costs are yet to be released.
Cadillac Cadillac gave us a preview of their new CT Coupe concept at the various auto shows this year. Although still a concept and as we all know not every concept makes it to the road it will be worth keeping an eye on this model.
Chrysler If you are looking for something a little different and a little greener then the new GEM Peapod from Chrysler might be just up your street. This model is scheduled for production during 2009. This will be an electric car with a range of about 50 km and will have a central console.
Mercedes-Benz The S400 BlueHYBRID is going to be launched in summer 2009 and promises to be the most economical luxury saloon available. The fuel consumption will be 7.9 L/100km with the worldâ€™s lowest C02 emissions.
success of the current Mini range we can now expect to see the new Mini Crossover in 2009. This vehicle will be a four door, 4WD car with four seats. This will also be the first mini to measure more than four metres in length.
Pontiac Pontiac are planning on bringing the truck in line with the car, or is that visa-versa? The Pontiac G8 Sport Truck will have the sporty handling of a sports car with the cargo capabilities of a truck. However you will have to wait for this as it is not expected until at least 2010.
Toyota The new Toyota Venza was unveiled at the North American International Auto show this year and promises to combine sedan refinement with SUV functionality. This vehicle will be sold exclusively in North America.
Volkswagen A potential new truck for late 2009 will be the concept Pickup. This vehicle aims to set new standards in the onetone pickup class and will have four doors and four seats.
We cannot promise that all these cars will reach the road, but some certainly will make driving around a little more interesting.
The mystery of the roundabout
Transport Canada brochure Throughout Canada a strange phenomenon is occurring. Drivers are happily going about their business when suddenly they come across a strange road junction consisting of several entrances and exits and a large round island in the middle. What can this odd thing be? Well it is in fact a roundabout. These junctions are common place in Europe where motorist happily navigate them on a daily basis. One very famous roundabout surrounds the Arch de Triumph in Paris and any non-Parisian is well advised to stay well clear of this huge and confusing road monstrosity. In North America we are only just starting to witness the emergence of the roundabouts in any great numbers. It is true that our neighbours to the south have had the pleasure of roundabouts much longer than ourselves, but even then they are still few and far between. So what are they? A roundabout is an elaborate junction in which traffic flows around a central island in a counter clockwise direction. They are designed to keep traffic flowing in an orderly fashion.
How to use a roundabout When you approach a roundabout you should reduce your speed just as you would approaching a 4-way. However unlike a 4way you do not have to come to a complete stop unless traffic requires you to do so. You should yield to traffic already on the roundabout coming from your left before entering the roundabout. Enter the roundabout when safe to do so and proceed in a counter clockwise direction until you reach your exit. Never stop whilst in a roundabout unless traffic conditions dictate it necessary. When exiting signal to let other
drivers know you are maneuvering and exit at a slow speed. Be prepared to stop for pedestrians using crosswalks. If you miss your exit proceed around the roundabout until you reach it again. Whilst on the roundabout you must be in the right lane. Lets say the roundabout has four exits. If you are taking the first exit you should stay in the right lane, if you are going straight across then you may use either the right or left lanes. If you are taking the third exit you should use the left hand lane and use the left lane of the roundabout until you exit. Do not change lanes whilst on the roundabout, exit from the lane you are in.
Winnipeg and Brandon in Manitoba both have roundabouts as does Montreal in Quebec. The roundabout furthest north is probably the one in Whitehorse, Yukon.
Most confusing roundabout in the world This title has to go to the aptly named Magic Roundabout in Swindon England. It was built in 1972 and consists of one large roundabout surrounded by five smaller roundabouts. This is the Google Maps view of it. Told you itâ€™s confusing.
Why have roundabouts? Many traditional intersections using traffic lights or stop signs are prone to collisions especially as traffic is often moving fast. Roundabouts provide a safer way to maneuver traffic as it is moving much slower and there are no left turns in front of oncoming traffic. They also tend to keep traffic moving better as there are no stop signs or traffic lights which require vehicles to stop. Roundabouts also improve air pollution and noise levels because they do not require vehicles to stop, start, idle, speed up etc. This means less fuel is used and less exhaust fumes in the air.
Where are these roundabouts? There are a growing number of roundabouts in Canada and most provinces and territories have at least one. The region of Waterloo in Ontario currently has eleven roundabouts and more are promised.
So if you read that a roundabout is planned for your area, or you come across one on your travels you will know not to panic. You can also download the brochure detailing how to use a roundabout by Transport Canada at this link.
Club 40Sequoia Kidzone
Do you have what it takes to be a cadet?
For many young people the idea of joining an organized group for fun activities and learning is very appealing. Probably some of the first groups that come to mind are the Scouts and the Girl Guides but how about the Canadian Cadets? The Canadian Cadet Organization (CCO) allows young Canadians aged between 12 and 18 years to participate in organized activities which are both challenging and rewarding in a properly supervised environment. There are currently around 56,000 cadets throughout Canada. There are three units to the cadets: Sea, Air and Army. Cadets can join any unit and take part in local, regional and national activities. As a cadet you are encouraged to be an active member of the community and learn skills such as leadership, teamwork, citizenship and fitness. In turn you will gain self confidence, decision making skills and gain physical fitness. Through the program young cadets learn about the Canadian Forces although there is no expectation to join the military, nor are the cadets part of the Canadian Forces. The CCO is open to both young men and women (aged 12-18) from all across Canada and from all levels of society. The Department of National Defense incurs all costs, so there are no costs to join, no fees and no cost for the uniforms or the training. So this makes the cadets an ideal solution for families on a budget who still want to participate in such activities.
Training During the school academic year (September - June) cadets take part in weekly training, one night per week. There may also be the option of weekend training depending on the unit chosen. During the summer you will be able to take part at one of the 28 summer training centres located across Canada. Depending upon which element you choose to join, you may participate in rappelling, adventure training or survival exercises for Army
Cadets, flying and gliding exercises for Air Cadets, and navigation and seamanship activities for Sea Cadets. All cadets are also provided with the opportunity to participate in marksmanship and biathlon competitions, map and compass exercises, as well as drill. Other activities focus on developing leadership, self-discipline and citizenship skills, including the Cadet Harassment and Abuse Prevention Program (CHAP). Through CHAP, cadets are sensitized to the various forms of harassment and abuse, and their effects. Method of instruction, public speaking and healthy living courses are also practical components of the regular Cadet Program. Furthermore, cadets frequently enjoy sports, environmental challenges, and music instruction (pipes and drums, or band). Each cadet also participates in a minimum of three field exercises per year. Over 23,000 cadets attend national and regional training every summer at one of the Canadian Forces-conducted Cadet Summer Training Centres (CSTC). Many of these programs include activities such as canoeing, camping, hiking, meteorology, sailing and mountain climbing. These courses last from two to six weeks depending on the speciality training chosen. If you are doing especially well you may be chosen to take part in international exchanges. Every year a number of senior cadets are chosen on merit to travel to foreign locations such as the United Kingdom, Japan, France, United States, Singapore or Germany. During these exchanges you will be representing Canada and will take part in training and cultural activities with your foreign cadet counterparts. Other specialized training is also offered for advanced cadets. These include marksmanship competitions both in Canada and nationally as well as parachute courses. Cadets who take part in summer training also receive a weekly training bonus - so you get paid for having fun! If you are 16 years or older and have reached a certain standard
you can choose to become a Staff Cadet (course instructor) at one of the summer centres.
Visions and Objectives The three aims of the cadets is to: • • •
Develop leadership and good citizenship Promote physical fitness Stimulate an interest in the three elements of the Canadian Forces The cadets core values are;
Loyalty - the expression of our dedication to the ideals of the Cadet Movement and all its members • Professionalism - the accomplishment of our tasks with pride and diligence • Mutual Respect - the treatment of others with dignity and equality • Integrity - the courage and commitment to exemplify trust, sincerity and honesty Leadership: Through the cadet program you will learn how to be a fair and responsible leader, take responsibility for your actions and motivate your peers. These skills are not only useful in the cadets but also in all other aspects of your life. Physical fitness: Being healthy and fit is important to all cadets and you will learn how to maintain a healthy lifestyle whilst participating in fun activities. By competing in individual or team events you will learn that sensible living, healthy eating and remaining active are all important factors to good health and fitness. The Canadian Forces: Although the cadets are not part of the Canadian Forces you will learn skills that stimulate your interest in the sea, land and air activities of the Forces. You will learn the history of the Canadian Forces as well as skills such as self-discipline, teamwork, leadership and good citizenship. •
42 Kidzone Sea Cadets As you would expect the Sea Cadets activities revolve around naval pursuits. You will learn about sailing, seamanship, shipboard life, naval communications, boat repair, marine engineering and ship deployments. Additionally you will receive tall ship training and power boat handling. Sea Cadet training is divided into four phases with an additional corps apprenticeship training option for senior cadets. The following subjects are part of the program: • • • • • • • • • • •
Bushcraft Citizenship Drill Marksmanship Physical Fitness Sailing Sea Cadet Routine Naval Knowledge Seamanship Leadership Instructional Techniques
During summer camps Sea Cadets learn sailing and seamanship activities along Canada’s coastline. Sea Cadets can earn a chance to participate in a national sailing regatta or to sail aboard a tall ship. Around 20% (11,000) of cadets are Sea Cadets with around 4,500 of those participating in sumer training. There are four phases to the training offered in the Sea Cadets: Phase 1: Introduction to the cadets, safe handling of a rifle, sailing, camping, sports and community activities. Completing this training is a prerequisite to going to a Summer Training Centre and for promotion to Able Cadet. Phase 2: Advanced shooting, sailing, seamanship, camping, physical fitness, community activities and parade drill. Completing this training is a prerequisite to going to a Summer Training Centre on a Trade Group I course and for promotion to Leading Cadet. Phase 3: Sailing theory, advanced rope handling, leadership skills and community activities. Completing this training is a prerequisite to going to a Summer Training Centre on a Trade Group II course and for promotion to Petty Officer Second Class. Phase 4: In this phase you can become an instructor yourself. Completing this training is a prerequisite to going to a Summer Training Centre on a Trade Group III course or a Specialty course and for promotion to Petty Officer First Class. There is then the option to pursue Phase 5 where you can lead groups on an outdoor adventure weekend, assist in supervising activities amongst many other opportunities.
Army Cadets The Army Cadets is the oldest of the cadets programs with around 35% of cadets belonging to it. Through active outdoor pursuits like trekking, canoeing, rock climbing and survival training, Army Cadets gain valuable life skills, knowledge of themselves and an awareness of their environment. Army Cadets also learn about army traditions and participate in a variety of national and international expeditions that focus on adventure training, like whitewater rafting, horseback riding and canoeing. Army Cadet training is divided into four star levels: Green Star: During the first year you will get basic training in bushcraft, citizenship, drill, fundamental training, leadership, marksmanship, public speaking and map & compass. Red Star: This level includes continued training in the Green Star activities as well as first aid knowledge. Silver Star: At this level you will take on more responsibility, learn leadership skills and teach other cadets all you have learnt. Gold Star: At this level you can become a leader at the cadet corps.
Air Cadets If you choose to join the Air Cadets you will have the opportunity to earn your civilian pilot licence as well as learn about the traditions of the Royal Canadian Air Force. You will also learn how to fly a glider, allowing you to pursue a career in flying or simply enjoy it as a hobby. Air Cadet Training is divided into five proficiency levels, including on-the-job
training for senior cadets. Some of the courses offered to Air Cadets at the local level are: • Aircraft identification • Aircrew survival • Aeronautical facilities • Physical fitness • Drill • Airframe Structure • Effective speaking • Marksmanship • Principles of flight • Radio communication • Propulsion • Navigation • Meteorology During the summer Air Cadets can attend summer training to gain flying and glider scholarships. The Air cadets has the largest proportion of cadets with 45%. Of those around 10,000 attend summer training.
Rewards By joining the cadets you will be rewarded with: • sense of accomplishment • recognition from your peers and mentors • once-in-a-lifetime experiences • life-long friends • a chance to show case your talents and maturity • self-confidence, self-discipline, selfesteem and increased self-awareness • community involvement So what are you waiting for? Join up now.
Top kids stuffâ€Ś Bestselling books 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.
Twilight, Stephanie Mayer Breaking Dawn, Stephanie Meyer New Moon, Stephanie Mayer Eclipse, Stephanie Mayer Treasure Hunters, Smith/Hamaker
Warriors Power of Three 4, Erin Hunter 7. Love You Forever, Munsch & McGraw 8. The Maze of Bones, Rick Riordan 9. Just One Goal, Munsch/Martchenko 10. Starclimber, Kenneth Oppel
DVD rental 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.
Made of Honor (PG) It's The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown The Forbidden Kingdom (PG) The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Beginning (G) The Nightmare Before Christmas Collectors Edition (PG)
6. 7. 8.
The Love Guru (14A) Speed Racer (PG) The Wiggles: You Make Me Feel Like Dancing (G) 9. What Happens in Vegas (PG) 10. Hannah Montana and Miley Cyrus: The Best of Both Worlds Concert (G)
Video games X-Box 360 NHL 09 (E10) Mercenaries 2: World in Flames (T) Soul Calibur IV (T) PS3 NHL 09 (E10) Mercenaries 2: World in Flames (T) TNA Impact (T)
Wii NHL 2K9 (E10) Mario Super Sluggers (E) Siper Smash Bros: Brawl (T) Nintendo DS Pokemon Diamond (E) Pokemon Pearl (E) Diddy Kong Racing (E)
Movies in theatres 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.
Igor (PG) Ghost Town (PG) The Longshots (PG) The House Bunny (PG) The Family That Preys (PG)
6. 7. 8. 9. 10.
Fly Me to the Moon (G) Journey to the Center of the Earth (PG) Kit Kittredge: An American Girl (G) Kung Fu Panda (PG) Space Chimps (G)
Club to Canada 44Sequoia Moving
Your British state pension and living in Canada Are you British but living in Canada. Have you given any thought to what happens to your UK state pension - thought not - read onâ€Ś.
Moving to Canada 45 By Tony Bockman, Chairman, Canadian Alliance of British Pensioners & International Consortium of British Pensioners If you ever worked in the UK and you’re either already in Canada or you are planning to immigrate / emigrate, whether you are young or old, please answer the questions below . . . . •
• • • •
Do you know if you are eligible for the State Retirement Pension (SRP) that you helped fund through yours or your spouse’s National Insurance Contributions (NICs) in the UK? Do you know you can continue to build that pension entitlement, here in Canada, if you’re not yet at retirement age? Do you know how and when to claim your pension entitlement? Do you know that the rules have changed if you reach retirement age after 5 April 2010? Do you know that when you start to receive that pension in Canada, it will be frozen – FOR EVER? If you are already receiving the SRP, and you have not yet emigrated, do you know it will be frozen the day you depart for Canada? Are you already receiving a ‘frozen’ pension and know what is being done to try to remedy that?
If you answered ‘NO’ to any of these questions, the Canadian Alliance of British Pensioners (CABP) can empower you! We can offer advice on how to calculate your eligibility, current or future – indeed, the younger you find out, the greater the chances of accumulating a 100% Pension. And you don’t even have to be British to collect; you just need to meet the requirements regarding residence and contributions to the National Insurance Fund. The most numerous group of people who “miss out” are those who don’t know that they may be able to continue paying contributions from Canada, retroactively and/or going forward, in order to earn themselves an even larger return – and at a much cheaper cost than paying into an RRSP. This can be lucrative for anyone, however the younger the better.
The frozen pension issue – in a nutshell Our number one priority is to achieve pension parity for all recipients of the UK State Retirement Pension, wherever they might choose to live in the world during their retirement years. The points below explain the situation to-date. •
There are 12 million UK State Retirement Pensioners, all of whom contributed to the UK Pension scheme via compulsory National Insurance Contributions. This is similar to the Canada Pension Plan, the value of each pension reflecting the number of years of contributions paid. Of the 12 million pensioners, just over one million live outside the UK. Half of these expatriate pensioners receive the same annual uprating of their pensions as those still living in the UK, while the other half does not – their pensions are frozen simply because of where they have chosen to reside in retirement. Commonwealth nations and British Overseas Territories are home to 98 per cent of “frozen” pensioners, including 153,000 in Canada (plus 240,000 in Australia, 46,000 in New Zealand and 38,000 in South Africa). The UK is the only OECD nation which denies parity to all state pensioners regardless of their country of residence. Financial impact on Canada? Almost one-third of a billion dollars a year, comprised of: • $275 million in foreign pension income withheld from the Canadian economy.
• $23 million paid out in federal Guaranteed Income Supplement expenditures to struggling UK pensioners living in Canada. • Cost to the UK government to provide parity to these frozen pensioners? • £470 million this year (2008/09) which is less than one per cent of the NIF expenditure and which the government says it cannot afford because the NIF balance (surplus) is “borrowed” by the government to invest in capital projects like schools and hospitals. • At the end of March 2008, the NIF balance exceeded £46 billion and it is projected to rise to whopping £115 billion by March 2013 (equivalent to over 136 per cent of that year’s estimated payouts). • The Government Actuary’s office predicts that, during 2008/09, the NIF average monthly income will exceed the expenditure by £900 million per month! (adding £10.8 billion to the balance.) Meanwhile, the cost of parity would be less than £40 million per month! • Additional savings to the UK government created by frozen pensioners living abroad? Almost £4 billion this year alone in health and care and other age-related costs which HMG would need to spend if we’d all stayed home. All of the above is based upon information from UK government documentation
What are we doing about this? 1.
The Canadian Alliance of British Pensioners (CABP) has united pensioner organizations in Australia, South Africa and Canada in a consortium which we now call the International Consortium of British Pensioners (ICBP). This has enabled 13 pensioners Applicants (eight from Canada, four from Australia and one from South Africa) to bring a human rights discrimination case against the UK government in the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR). The suit seeks pension parity for all UK pensioners, regardless of where they live. The case has been scrutinized, accepted, prioritized and placed on the fast track by the court due to the advanced age of many of the applicants. Currently, we expect a
46 Moving to Canada
hearing in 2008 with a judgment anticipated in 2009. Our lead council in the UK handling this case is Timothy Otty QC, a leading human rights lawyer. In addition, Phil Tunley of Stockwoods LLP provides probono legal advice to us in Canada, a task he has undertaken for many years. He first handled the case when he was a Senior Partner with McCarthy Tétrault and then transferred it with him to Stockwoods when he moved there a couple of years ago. He was responsible for identifying Timothy Otty as our UK counsel and we are forever grateful for the work Phil has undertaken over the years. On the advice of Counsel, a secondary case has also been filed listing all members of CABP (and the members of each ICBP Partner Organization) as “applicants,” thus ensuring that at least these 40,000 or so individuals will share in the fruits of the decision on the primary suit. This list of “Applicants” is updated with the Court on a quarterly basis, as more and more people become members of CABP and the ICBP Partner Organizations, in an attempt to safeguard their rights. CABP and the ICBP continue to aggressively lobby both chambers of the UK Parliament in order to eradicate any appetite for launching an appeal when the ECHR finds in favour of our applicants and to extinguish the political will for continuing to impose pension freezing. CABP gratefully acknowledges the generous support of the Canadian Government which enabled the case to proceed through the UK legal system in order to get to the ECHR and still stays very much in touch with our efforts and progress
How do we fund all of this activity? I can hear you all asking that question as you read this. It is quite a challenge and we do it all through the generosity of our members, who pay an annual membership fee of $20 (a little more if they are overseas members) and on top of that make voluntary contributions to our Action Fund if they so wish. Each of the other four Partner Organizations makes donations from its domestic funds to what we now call the Consortium Fund, which is used solely to support the costs of our Court case and our lobbying activities in the UK. So the pensioners who are being discriminated against by the UK government are the ones providing the means to fund the activities. This Consortium Fund is managed by CABP and is held in Sterling funds as most of our legal and lobbying expenses are incurred in that currency. Phil Tunley approves all UK legal team
MOVING 2 ALBERTA
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Tel: 001 403 932 5670 Email: Helenparnell@shaw.ca www.moving2alberta.com
expenditures and the CABP Treasurer issues a financial report on the Consortium Fund to the Partner Organization every month.
What do you get for your $20 membership fee? To summarize what’s been said above and in the hope that you are persuaded to join us, here’s what you get for your $20: • • • • •
A date with the European Court of Human Rights. A crack team of lawyers fighting for your rights. The support of the International Consortium of British Pensioners, over 40,000 strong. Advice on dealing with the Pensions Service at the Department for Work and Pensions. Four Justice magazines a year to keep you informed.
Please remember, you don’t have to be a pensioner to join CABP. If you are not yet at retirement age but you live in Canada and intend to qualify for a UK State Retirement Pension, that pension will eventually become frozen, unless we do something about it! If you are already a pensioner living in the UK and you are planning to emigrate to Canada to be close to family loved ones in your declining years, then your state retirement pension will become frozen the day you step on that aircraft or boat, unless we do something about it! Numbers are important to our cause. The more members we have, the louder our voice becomes and the easier it is to attract the attention we need. And if it is less than 15 years since you left the UK, you still have the right to vote in a UK parliamentary election. We can tell you how to do that and our voice then becomes louder through your participation.
Where to find us The Canadian Alliance of British Pensioners (CABP) is a not-forprofit organization registered with the federal government. It is run by volunteers with members and active volunteers across Canada. For more information, call our national office toll-free: 1-888-591-3964; in the Toronto area call 416-253-6402; Email info@BritishPensions.com; On-line: www.BritishPensions.com. At our website you will find links to all of the International Consortium Partner Organizations. These are: British Pensioners Association of Western Canada (BPAWC) British Australian Pensioner Association (BAPA) British Pensions in Australia (BPiA) South African Alliance of British Pensioners (SAABP). You will also find a link to the new International Consortium website there but you can go straight to it through the following link: www.pension-parity-uk.com.
Moving to Canada 47
Have you talked to us lately? Mentoring at Mumford By June can be all that it takes to kick start our guests would coach you. Most of us have an idea or have an Spindloe into a positive frame of mind. This might
• • • •
Are you an expert on relocation Do you have a vision and a purpose? Do you set measurable goals and have a focused action plan ? Do you believe in positive affirmations and self talk?
If you have answered yes to all these questions then read no further as your experience will be totally different to those of you out there who are still struggling with some of the basics. You may already be in a leadership role in your working life or be in a informal mentoring role with family or colleagues, what does all this have to do with emigrating you might well ask? Psychologists say that there is a difference between idly wishing for something and actually wanting something so much you take action. If you are never thinking concretely about your goal you can't take steps to get there. There are many challenges associated with starting a whole new life. You may be feeling down about your present situation in the UK and you may have started the process to turn your life around months or maybe years ago and still feel no nearer to achieving your goals. Many people have expressed their lives as being in limbo and without purpose until they know what is happening with their visas. Some of you out there have paid a considerable amount to immigration consultants and feel that you are not getting any further ahead even with their promises of a new future. Here at Mumford Homestay and Bed and Breakfast, we consider ourselves "experts" at what we do. Well what do we do we ask ourselves. It’s not until after our visitors have left that we have been told what an impact we have made on them. Over the years we have been in contact with many people from all walks of life and in every stage of relocating to Nova Scotia. We have opened up our hearts and our home to newcomers and still we find that a week here at Mumford
sound like a simplistic view. Ask any of our assumption made about mentoring, I myself visitors if they know why they are here and experienced the positive effects of they will tell you.... but they are not at all Mentorship while working in the UK. My boss confident or sure of their own abilities to was a key factor in helping me attain my achieve their goals. Too often we find career goals and in fact was instrumental in ourselves talking with couples that are me removing the blocks that helped me to "feeling down about their prospects" or make achieve change in my life. negative statements regarding their self All too often we have negative self talk worth and have not focused on their goals. which can destroy our self confidence and fill They also refuse to recognize their changing us with an overwhelming sense of anxiety. needs and this will continue to hold them Positive self talk can over time reinforce that back from achieving their goals. Remember self esteem and drive us on to achieve and you are new at this so it is okay to ask for focus our goals. help and advice ! Have you voiced your negative thoughts In life we experience different forms of to yourself lately or do you fill your mind with monitorship it has been proved that if you positive affirmations? select your mentor based on experience and If you are in the first stages of planning resources then you will be more likely to your move to Nova Scotia or in need of succeed. accommodation on your fact finding trip Informal mentoring is the most common contact us - and be warned - we do want form of mentoring that we experience in our you to succeed ! . everyday lives.We became mentors by Contact June e via email at default, because there was nowhere else for email@example.com people to go when they first considered Nova Scotia as a destination. Things were different when we arrived in 1996 but the people that we deal with now are no different to those early arrivals, if anything they are from a different generation of Brits that are more stressed more disillusioned and even more determined to leave. There are many more choices now than ten years Meet us - June & Mark Spindloe online at the Canadian Government’s portal: ago, with internet and www.bfic.net Or email us: advertising you can gain an firstname.lastname@example.org insight into how you will approach your relocation Besides help with purchasing property we can save experience. For some of you hours of research, time and money. you it will be a steep These are just some of the benefits Relocation Nova Scotia clients enjoy! learning curve for others it • Tailor Made accommodation solutions for your Fact Finding Trips and will be a refusal to on landing, choice of B&B or one of our short term rentals. recognize your changing • We will provide meet and greet at Airport when landing with a large enough vehicle for your family and luggage. needs. We can give you the • Meet with professional Immigration Consultant based here in Halifax tools and the positive on your fact finding trip and receive free consultation. feedback to help you on • Foreign exchange specialist will make moving your money overseas easy. Fast Track services to obtain day-to-day banking, mortgages, your way but it’s still up to credit cards and financial services from one of Canada’s leading you, you will have to do the Banks, with a one to one service from your own personal banker. leg work and the research, • Competitive rates for Car Rental, Car Insurance and purchasing a vehicle. you will have to step out of • Canadian Mobile phones, SIM cards delivered to you before you your comfort zone to make land and pay using a UK credit card. telephone calls and attend • Unique women’s network providing friendship and advice. interviews. You are a novice when you first arrive, you have never done Please visit www.relocationnovascotia.com and register. Call June or Mark on 001 902 446 0766 and we’ll call you back. this before if you were in a work situation you would be paired with someone with more experience who
48 Moving to Canada
Immigration news update Staff recruited to speed up skilled worker processing On September 5th Diane Finley, Citizenship and Immigration minister announced funding of $109 million to add processing staff to the Case Processing Centre in Sydney Nova Scotia which will help speed up the processing of skilled worker applications. Over 30 new staff will be hired and trained to work at the new location which will begin reviewing applications in October. “In order to get the people we need to this country, we need to process applications faster,” said Minister Finley. “This pilot is one of several measures we are taking to help reduce wait times overall. By centralizing the intake of federal skilled worker applications, we are alleviating some of the workload in our overseas visa offices. This allows visa officers to focus more on processing applications.
“In addition to improving the way we process applications, this centre will create new jobs in Nova Scotia,” the Minister added. “This is a win situation for Nova Scotians, for Canadians and for prospective immigrants.” This pilot project will be reassessed in eighteen months and will then be adjusted as necessary. Other measures being taken to reduce the processing times include more staff being allocated to areas experiencing long delays and the redistribution of work to offices that are less busy.
Canadian Experience Class now accepting applications Last month we gave you preliminary details of the brand new Canadian Experience Class of immigration. We can now announce that as of 17th September
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applications using this route are being accepted. There is one major change to the original proposals in that graduates and workers who have left Canada, but otherwise meet the criteria can apply via this route. The only stipulation is that they have to apply within one year of leaving their job in Canada. Citizenship and Immigration minister Diane Finley said,“With the Canadian Experience Class fully in place, Canada will be more competitive in attracting and retaining individuals with the skills we need. It, along with other recent improvements to modernize the immigration system, will go a long way in bringing Canada in line with its global competitors while further spreading the benefits of immigration into smaller centres across Canada.” If you want to use this method of application you will need to meet the criteria: • plan to live outside the province of Quebec • be either: • a temporary foreign worker with at least two years of full-time (or equivalent) skilled work experience in Canada, or • a foreign graduate from a Canadian post-secondary institution with at least one year of full-time (or
Moving to Canada 49 equivalent) skilled work experience in Canada • have gained your experience in Canada with the proper work or study authorization • apply while working in Canada – or – within one year of leaving your job in Canada According to the Canadian National Occupational Classification (NOC), skilled work experience means: • Skill Type 0 (managerial occupations) or • Skill Level A (professional occupations) or • Skill Level B (technical occupations and skilled trades) Your application will be assessed on two requirements if you apply as a temporary foreign worker: • your work experience and • your ability in English or French. If you apply as a graduate of a Canadian post-secondary educational institution with
Canadian work experience, it will be assessed using the above requirements, as well as: • your education.
Temporary worker requirements You must have two year full-time (or equivalent) work experience in Canada gained within three years of application.Your work experience must be Skill Type 0, or Skill Level A or B on the NOC. You can check your job at the NOC website here.
Graduate requirements Applications are based on both education and work experience. As a graduate of a Canadian post-secondary educational institution, you must have one year of fulltime (or equivalent) work experience in Canada after graduation. Your work experience must be gained within two years of applying. Work experience gained during your studies does not count toward meeting
the requirements for work experience. Only work experience gained after graduation can be counted. Your work experience must be Skill Type 0, or Skill Level A or B on the NOC. You can check your job at the NOC website here. Education is only assessed if you are applying as a graduate of a Canadian postsecondary educational institution. If you want to apply based on your Canadian credentials, you must complete either: • a full-time Canadian post-secondary educational program of at least two years or • a one-year Master’s program (certificates and diplomas cannot be counted) and an additional year of education, obtained in Canada, before admission into the one-year program (for a total of two years). Full detail of the application process, criteria and requirements can be found on the Citizenship and Immigration Canada website. You will also find application guides and all forms on the site.
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50 Moving to Canada
Living rural in Living rural in Nova Scotia By Donna McNeil, Exit Realty Metro, Halifax Nova Scotia Where you might ask is Nova Scotia? Well, it’s the second smallest province lying on the eastern coast of Canada with a population of 930,000. It’s also a quick 5 hr. flight from the UK, making it a desirable place to live for Brits wanting to exit the fast lane. It offers a gentler, kinder way of life. You may choose to live in an urban area such as Halifax. It’s a lovely oceanfront city and is the capital of NS. Being a small city with a population 370,000 people, it is friendly but also offers the amenities of a much larger city. There are several universities in the city thus the down town core caters to a younger crowd. However, the more adventurous may choose to live in a rural area. You may even have visited and come to appreciate what rural living has to offer such as peace & quiet (no traffic noise ) nature at your doorstep and of course clean air. Let me take you to Maitland! It is an Historic Village lying along the shores of the Bay of Fundy. Once known for shipbuilding, it’s about 1 hr drive from Halifax and 30 min. from Truro. A fair number of artists live in the community now, painters, glassblowers & scrimshaw artists are just a few. It is also home to antique stores, B&B’s, art studios, small shops and restaurants. The local Ladies Auxiliary is alive and active. This summer they hosted Sunday Lunch at the Old Selma Schoolhouse, which is a Designated Historic Property and is now a community art gallery. Having tried one of these lunches I can personally tell you that they
Where you might ask is Nova Scotia? Well, it’s the second smallest province lying on the eastern coast of Canada with a population of 930,000. It’s also a quick 5 hr. flight from the UK, making it a desirable place to live for Brits wanting to exit the fast lane. It offers a gentler, kinder way of life. You may choose to live in an urban area such as Halifax. It’s a lovely oceanfront city and is the capital of NS. Being a small city with a population 370,000 people, it is friendly but also offers the amenities of a much larger city. There are several universities in the city thus the down town core caters to a younger crowd. However, the more adventurous may choose to live in a rural area. You may even have visited and come to appreciate what rural living has to offer such as peace & quiet
( no traffic noise ) nature and of course clean air. Let me take you to Historic Village lying alo Bay of Fundy. Once kn it’s about 1 hr drive from from Truro. A fair numb community now, painte scrimshaw artists are ju home to antique stores studios ,small shops an local Ladies Auxiliary is summer they hosted Su Old Selma Schoolhouse Designated Historic Pro community art gallery. H these lunches I can per they are delicious indee
Halifax Harbour & restaurants
Donna McNeil Exit Realty Metro 2055-1658 Bedford Highway, Bedford, Nova Scotia, B4A 2X9
Cell: 902-222-4937 Fax: 902-835-4539 Email: email@example.com Web: www.100metro.ca Relocation email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Be one of the many families I have successfully helped relocate to the Halifax, Nova Scotia area. Maitland General Store for sale
I can assist from your first fact-finding trip to the purchase of your new home.
Moving to Canada 51
Plaque at historical site
The Neils outside their home
The Neil’s home for sale
are delicious indeed. After several visits there I have come to realize there is a back to the “organic” way of life happening. Maitland is home of the world famous Tidal Bore. Tides here can reach heights of over 50 feet making river rafting along the Shubenacadie a popular adventure for the thrill seeking individual. Small though Maitland is, there are also business opportunities available to those of an entrepreneurial mind set. Presently there is a General Store and a B&B for sale. The Neils pictured sitting on the front verandah of their home, have a small antique shop in their front parlor. Kevin is a retired teacher, a scrimshaw artist and a wood worker. He has made the most beautiful dining room set from birdseye maple. Wood that a friend offered him at a price he couldn’t refuse, he says, as he had his eye on it for awhile. Their house is currently for sale. It’s a gorgeous Heritage House listed at $180,000. Feeling that the house was too large for them, they bought the smaller bungalow next door and completely gutted the inside. It’s being done in a modern style. Nancy states the reason they chose to remodel in modern is because “I didn’t want to live here and pine for my old house next door with all my antiques so we chose to go completely different. Now, will we like the new house? Only time will tell.” It will be easier to look after which is important as they travel to Australia for a few months each winter.
During a recent visit to the area with my business partner Mark Spindloe and his wife June, from Relocation Nova Scotia, we dropped in on new arrivals Anthony Kawalski & Jon Twinley. Hailing from England they bought a house and settled in Selma several months ago. The house they purchased was built on a land grant from the British in 1867, the Parsonage for the Methodist Chapel on the hill. Anthony says on initial visits , “we fell in love with the area, it’s beauty and charm and the friendliness of the people. The magic I haven’t quite put my finger on. Once our offer had been accepted on what we now call the ‘Old Parsonage’, every day that has passed, including closing day (that’s moving in day) wood day (delivery of wood for their wood burning stove), container day, and any other day I can name, we have been made more and more welcome by the local folks. In a short space of time we have made a house into a home and each day we have been rewarded by what the area has to offer. “The reality of life here, is on the one hand we have been offered all that I have talked about, the practicalities sometimes mean that we wish we could be nearer facilities. For example, the day I travelled to Sobeys (a grocery store) in Enfield and checked through $200 of food & realized that I’d forgotten my wallet necessitating an hours round trip to collect it. Upon arrival I was still glad we made the decision to move here. We love Maitland!“
52 Moving to Canada
Playing catch-up Back in 2006 we featured the real-life story of Carl and Debra and their daughter Charlotte. They had moved to Canada in 2002 and after struggling for a couple of years finally moved into their own home. Their story featured in both the June and August 2006 issues. Now we catch up with the family to see what they have been up to since we last spoke to them. Carl takes up their story. Since we moved into our Calgary home in July 2006, we have been busy making it our own. The garden required quite a bit of work as the lawn was patchy and full of weeds, there were no places to put any plants and the sandbox which they left us needed to be removed. The house itself does not have a garage but an area called a drive pad which was Angel also knee deep in weeds.Our neighbour was quite pleased to see us working away at the garden and was overjoyed when I threw out the sandbox. Overall, I had made that many trips to the local dump to dispose of the garden waste I was starting to be recognized! I also had a quick learning curve on the heating systems used here, the furnace required a new motor and being the kind of person who likes to do things himself I had to do some research on furnace maintenance. One piece of advice is always check to see if the furnace filter has been changed regularly, as in our case it had not, which caused several problems and can be quite expensive. By Christmas time the whole place was looking in much better shape, I had painted the downstairs (still have to do the upstairs) and the house became our home. This was our first Christmas in our own home and it felt great! Once winter had passed and spring arrived, we decided to stain the decking area which is quite large, about 25 ft by 12 ft so that took a while. We purchased an outside wooden table and chairs which we still enjoy using in the summer months. By March of 2007, we made an addition to our family, no, not another baby – a cat! We adopted him from the meow foundation which is an animal shelter for abandoned cats. He is a seal-point Himalayan and we named him Monty after a Himalayan cat we looked after in England. We do not let him outside other than on the decking due to coyotes. Cats make a tasty meal for them and can be heard howling when sitting outside late into the evening. I was quite surprised to see one of the animals strolling quite boldly down the middle of the road close to where we live on my way back from the supermarket one evening. One of Charlotte’s friends who lives quite close saw a moose whilst walking her dog with her
parents. It’s times like these that make us realize we are living close to the wild. In July of 2007 we decided to go camping for 10 days to Vernon in British Columbia. It’s a fantastic drive from Calgary to Vernon and is not one to rush. There are just so many things to see on the way. We camped at Kalmalka Lake which is not far from the centre of Vernon and has a great beach. The weather was good as well, 35℃ was very welcome from the -35℃ we endured over winter!. We also did a couple of hikes to Twin Falls in BC (close to Emerald Lake) and to Arnika Lake (close to Lake Louise). Arnika Lake is marked as a strenuous hike and required some determination. The views of Castle Mountain were amazing. Summer soon came and went and it was back to winter again. We went to Heritage Park on Halloween as they have the ‘Heritage Park after Dark’ event which lasts several days running up to the night itself. We decorated the outside of the house with various spooky items and gave out lots of candy. It’s a great way to get to meet your neighbours from surrounding streets. Our second Christmas came and went and when February 2008 arrived, we had cold weather like we had not yet experienced. The wind chill factor dipped below -45℃. Warming up the car was
challenging and even getting to work on the local LRT (c-train) was made difficult due to breakdowns - at those temperatures, things tend to stop working! So it is now summer time, our daughter Charlotte will be starting Junior High school in September, she is now 12 years old. During the summer time when we are working, she spends her time at summer camp which is nonstop fun. The camp is run at the before/after school care community centre in Varsity (in the NW of Calgary) where she has attended for the last 4/5 years. When she starts Junior High, she will be picked up by one of those yellow school busses as she will be too old to
Moving to Canada 53 attend the community centre. She is quite looking forward to that and we are looking forward to not having the expense of day care! The busses pick the kids up at various locations where we live which is really good. This helps reduce the number of individual school runs. For our main vacation this summer, we decided to spend several days back in Vancouver. We used our air miles so the flight was free other than the taxes which amounted to $490. It was nice to go back to Vancouver and brought some closure for us as this was the place where it all began. It was nice to behave like tourists and to have nothing to worry about. We visited Grouse Mountain, the aquarium, Stanley Park, saw the celebration of light fireworks display at English bay and spent a day in Victoria. It was nice to see the sea! Our neighbour looked after our cat whilst we were away which was nice. On our return to Calgary, we were glad to be back, we truly feel Calgary is our home. We had a week back at work and then two more weeks off. We spent a few days at the local outdoor pool, visiting Banff, we hiked up the Centennial Trail in Kananaskis country which is Canada’s highest maintained trail as well as to Taylor Lake which is a few miles east of Lake Louise. The weather was really nice and the temperatures averaged the mid to high 20’s with the hottest being +35℃. The community where we live is called Tuscany and has its own shopping centre. The local supermarket gives out free samples of food which Charlotte loves. She is known by all the staff there and spends lots of time chatting to them every time we go shopping. The centre has its own gas station, hairdressers, video store, vets,
Monty the cat
Charlotte, Debra & Carl hiking in Arnica Lake
doctors, eye clinic all coupled with a great view of the mountains. We are both still working for the same employers: Debra is at the Calgary Health Region and I at Allstream (telecommunications). Even though I only have 15 days vacation plus 2 floater days (floater days are to cover the Alberta only public holidays as the company is Canadian wide), I do not feel in desperate need of a holiday. I get a flex day every 3 weeks and can work from home, usually 2/3 days a week. This allows me to get the usual chores done around the house. Later this year, the C-Train (LRT) extension to Crowfoot which is a large shopping centre will be completed. There will be free parking for about 1,400 cars and is only 3.5 km drive away. This will cut down the current driving distance of about 11 km to Brentwood station which has approximately 1,100 free parking spaces. House prices seem to have leveled off in Calgary. The boom brought with it prosperity but the down side is that
the level of crime has increased. At the time of writing this, Calgary recorded its 25th murder of the year. Gang related shootings seem to be happening more frequently but are generally kept within the criminal element. However, we still feel very safe where we live and safe in going about our daily business. The Calgary Police Service has been actively recruiting new officers for about the past two to three years and people who commit these types of crime usually end up being arrested. On a lighter note Charlotte has just joined Pathfinders which is part of the Girl Guides. We have just bought her uniform which cost about $100 and in October she will be going camping with them for two nights. All in all, we are really happy we emigrated, it has been an adventurous journey and stressful at times, but things have settled down for us and we can relax and enjoy life. Calgary is a fantastic place to live and raise a family. Our next step is to apply to become Canadian citizens. We intend on applying this year.
Carl has set up an online group for people who are looking to move to Calgary from the UK, or who have already done so. Join for free at http:// ca.groups.yahoo.com/ group/UKTOCALGARY/
54 Health & Wellness
Natural cures help for allergy treatment By Sturat Mitchel
be animal fur and dander, feathers, mites, house dust, pollen, cockroach droppings, insect stings, chemicals (like perfumes, and even our everyday cosmetics like The substances shampoos and soaps!) and dyes, known as allergens medication, synthetic fiber, and a huge are what cause variety of food and drinks. To address these allergies in reactions, the first line of defense is individuals who avoiding allergens that cause these allergic are very sensitive symptoms. to them. People's While many think of allergy treatment in allergic reaction to the forms of over-the-counter inhalers, something as ointments and medication, others opt for manifested by inflammation or allergies the more natural way for allergy relief like an occurs when they inhale, touch or eat herbal supplement that would help eliminate something that their bodies are not used to. the sneezing, the coughing and the itching. One out of three people either say that Right within one's kitchen are ingredients to they have a food allergy or that they modify concoct an allergy home remedy without the family diet because a family member is paying for the traditional drugs. Dealing with suspected of having a food allergy. To allergies is a serious matter because diagnose food allergy a doctor must first allergies could be fatal when allergy determine if the patient is having an adverse treatment is not administered immediately. If reaction to specific foods. This assessment you think your allergy is leading to Asthma is made with the help of a detailed patient symptoms you must seek medical advice. history and a diet diary, The next step some When people begin to take the natural doctors use is an elimination diet. Under the approach to allergy treatment, chances are doctor's direction, the patient does not eat they might be embracing homeopathy, a a food suspected of causing the allergy, like disease-treatment system practiced for eggs, and substitutes another food, in this hundreds of years already. Some other case, another source of protein. This forms of natural remedies are: Apitherapy, technique cannot be used, however, if the Applied Kinesiology, Aromatherapy, reactions are severe (in which case the Ayurveda, Biofeedback, Bodywork, patient should not resume eating the food) Buteyko, Chinese Medicine, Color Therapy, or infrequent. Flower Essences, Gemstone Therapy, Other popular allergic causes are pollens Herbology, Iridology, Macrobiotics, from flowers (this can be referred to as Meditation, Music Therapy and springtime allergy), moulds and dust. These Naturopathy. 'triggers', known as potential allergens, may Though there are those who claim that homeopathy doesn't really work, others are quick to defend its efficiency. An herbal supplement is the better option to deal with allergic reactions than those drugs that contain chemicals. There are known cases where certain individuals have allergy reactions to some medications. Others simply don't want pills and injections for their allergy treatment. In this
case, a home remedy allergy treatment would be fine. Using nutrition and vitamin supplements to build up your immunity strength makes common sense. I have found information on a site contributed by Helene Malmsio to be really helpful in learning more about natural cures allergy treatment. For instance, he better your nutrition quality is, the stronger your body becomes to fight off the triggers that would otherwise cause an allergic reaction in the stressed and overwhelmed immune system in the body. Natural herbal supplement for allergies often use the Guarana herb as the chief ingredient to help reduce inflammation, as it has anti-histamine properties and is safe, effective and cheap and does not suppress the symptom of the allergy; rather, it targets the root cause of the problem that leads to the symptoms of the allergy. You can make yourself a strong tea brew from the Guarana herb, either with the plant or from commercially made instant teas, or take guarana tablet supplements. So, natural herbal allergy relief is achieved in a simple and fast way. You can also sometimes get allergy and hay fever relief by having a steam facial, as breathing in the steam helps to clean out the pollens from your sinuses, and the moisture can soothe inflamed tissues in your nose and eyes. Cool cucumber slices or cold wet tea bags can be rested on your eyes to help soothe them. Keeping the house windows and doors closed in Spring time will also help, despite the temptation to let the mild warm breeze air out the house, that breeze will also bring pollen from all the new flowers and grasses. If you need to work outside where you are exposed to the pollens, it would be advisable to wear a filter mask to clean the air you breathe. You also need to consider the other allergy triggers you may be exposed to like house dust, pet hair, chemical sprays and fumes, that need to be eliminated from your environment. There's a range of complete herbal supplement available that are suitable to use as a self care strategy and allergy home remedy. These natural vitamin herbal supplements guarantee effective allergy relief. They can combat underlying problems for allergic causes minus the pills and injections. Do you suffer from Allergies? Come see our natural cures home remedies health guide for Natural Cures Help for Allergy Treatment - all designed to help you feel better and BE healthier today! Help is just a click away. http://best-natural-cures-health-
Health & Wellness 55
Smoking trends in Canada
What is glutathione
The Canadian Tobacco Use Monitoring Survey (CTUMS) have
Simply put, glutathione (GSH) is the body’s master antioxidant.
collected data regarding smoking in Canada for the year 2007. It shows that 19% of the Canadian population over the age of 15 years are current smokers. This means that over 5 million Canadians smoke, the same number as the previous year. More males than females smoke, although the difference between the sexes has narrowed over the years with more females smoking than previous years. On average daily smokers consumed 15.5 cigarettes per day. Approximately 330,000 teenagers between 15 and 19 years of age smoke on average 11.7 cigarettes per day. Male teens smoke 2.4 more cigarettes per day than females. 62% of Canadians reported having tried a cigarette before the age of 19. In the age range of 20-24 years around 25% of the population smokes, a decrease of 2% on the previous year. Of this group 17% smoke daily whilst 9% smoke occasionally. Those who smoked daily, consumed an average of 13 cigarettes per day with males averaging more (14.7) than females (10.8). Along with smoking pre-packaged cigarettes, some Canadian smokers choose to purchase tobacco so they can roll or make their own cigarettes. Among CTUMS current smokers, 11% reported they roll or make their own cigarettes including 4% who do it all the time. When smokers were asked how soon after waking in the morning did they smoke their first cigarette 23% stated it was within five minutes of waking. 36% waited between 6-30 minutes and 60% managed to wait for 30 minutes or more before taking their first puff. The province with the highest ratio of smokers was in Saskatchewan (24%) with the lowest numbers in British Columbia (14%). Smokers in New Brunswick reported the highest number of cigarettes smoked each day (17.3) with Saskatchewan recording the lowest daily average (13.9). Smokers were also asked if they had ever tried herbal cigarettes. Only 4% said they had and only 1% had smoked a herbal cigarette in the 30 days preceding the report. Small cigars are becoming increasingly popular in Canada and of those surveyed 37% said they had tried small cigars with 32% of those aged between 15 and 19 years having done so. Respondents were also asked if they had ever tried marijuana, cannabis or hashish and 39.1% replied that they had. Alberta (41.8) had the highest number of people having tried these substances and Newfoundland and Labrador 32.9% had the lowest numbers. Fifty-two percent of the Canadian population has never smoked a cigarette with more females (57%) than males (48.3%). British Columbia has the highest number of those who have never smoked with 57.1% of the population followed closely by Ontario with 56.1% of never smokers. Quebec at 46.4% has the lowest level of those having never smoked.
It is a small protein produced naturally in our cells when certain required elements are present. It functions both as an antioxidant and an antitoxin and is a major defense system against illness and aging. Our glutathione level actually indicates our state of health and can predict longevity. Although there are more than 60,000 published papers on the beneficial effects of glutathione replacement, it is still largely ignored by mainstream medicine. . In the near future the importance of glutathione will be widely recognized because it has the ability to boost the immune system and fight off the damage of free radicals on the cells. Modern research has shown that individuals who have low levels of glutathione are susceptible to chronic illness. Decreased levels of glutathione can be brought about by continual stress upon the immune system. As we now know, a lowered immune system can bring about illness and disease. This is a ferocious cycle. While you need glutathione for a productive immune system, a weakened immune system hampers the production of glutathione. Glutathione has been shown to slow down the aging process, detoxify and improve liver function, strengthen the immune system, and reduce the chances of developing cancer. Glutathione also works to help improve mental functions, increase energy, improve concentration, permit increased exercise, and improve heart and lung function - just to name a few.
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56 Health & Wellness
Coping with grief
understanding the process
By Ben Anton Grief is a common, expected, and necessary reaction to loss of any kind. Each person will experience grief in a different way and, depending on how well they cope with those emotions, they may have positive or negative long-term effects from their bereavement.
What is Grief? The term grief comes from the Old French word greve which means a heavy burden. Normal characteristics of grief include depression, apathy, lethargy, and sorrow. What is so difficult about grief after the loss of a loved one is that it can renew and manifest again when special occasions or key dates come around each year. Though physical absence is the most obvious reason to grieve, many have a more difficult time getting over the constant reminder that they will never share a special moment or memory with the loved one again.
Responding To Grief The response to the loss of a loved one varies depending on how the person passed way, the relationship between the griever and the deceased, and individual personalities. When a person dies unexpectedly, the grieving process may last longer than the grief associated with an anticipated death. Feelings of guilt and regret are often heightened in situations
where a person dies who one has not spoken to in a long time or where fights were going on. People prone to depression may find the grieving process more difficult than someone with a more positive personality.
Stages of Grief In 1969, psychiatrist Elisabeth Kubler-Ross developed five stages of grief based on her work with terminally-ill patients. The five stages are denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. These stages serve as a good blueprint for what types of emotions people may experience after the death of a loved one.
Grief vs. Depression Symptoms of depression may accompany grief. However, major depression is a psychological disorder that requires longterm treatment and care. Grief is a healthy human response; it should not be treated with antidepressants or medication. Grief can evolve into depression under certain conditions. Anyone suspecting this to be occurring should seek the professional opinion of a psychiatrist or counselor.
Coping With Grief Surrounding yourself with supportive, loving people is the best way to cope with the loss of a loved one. Dealing with grief alone is a dangerous and unhealthy idea. Find a
discussion group or seek out a counselor if you need to talk with professionals and others that have gone through similar experiences. Find a friend to share time with, even if its just watching a movie at home or taking a walk. There is no embarrassment in sharing your time with people that are willing to offer you the support you need, regardless of what form that support takes. Some find that a creative outlet, such as painting or keeping a memorial journal, is a good way to bring their minds out from under the burden of grief. Families often find that creating an online memorial or a memorial scrapbook helps give them a sense of peace as well as a place to always go back to and remember their loved one. Don't be ashamed of whatever form your grief manifests itself in so long as it is not self-destructive or detrimental to your longterm health.
Grief and Trauma It is important to be aware of how trauma may have an affect on the grieving process. Trauma is a disabling reaction to the unexpected death of a loved one that may block or hinder the grieving process and can lead to more damaging psychological problems. If you think you might be experiencing trauma, you should seek professional help. By recognizing your grief and making strides to work through it in a safe and healthy way, your ability to cope with your emotions and move forward will be easier.
Health & Wellness 57
Hair loss prevention better than cure
Hair loss can be defined as the lessening of hair on the scalp. The medical term of hair loss is alopecia, which can be temporary or permanent. Aside Androgenetic Alopecia, there are other forms of hair loss that includes Alopecia Areata (patches of baldness that usually grow back), Telogen Effluvium (fast shedding after childbirth, fever or abrupt weight loss) and Traction Alopecia (reduction from tight braids or ponytails). The problem of hair loss generally occurs with age in both men and women, but it is normally more pronounced in men. One of the best ways to reduce hair loss is stress reduction. Some drugs can also be the cause of hair loss on the scalp and other parts on the body. Apart from drugs and stress, there are other reasons for excessive hair loss. If your hair loss is due to certain medication, you need to consult a physician and ask him to recommend an alternative. These ways to remove hair loss can work for you, but the medical study has revealed the main reason for hair loss, at least 95 percent of the time, is either hormonal or genetic. Hair loss is not common in women, but some of the common types of hair loss in women that includes androgenetic alopecia, also known as female pattern alopecia or baldness. Approximately 95 percent of all cases of hair loss in men are male pattern hair loss. It is necessary to know your specific needs then choose hair treatment which is suited for your hair. Due to hormonal changes linked with pregnancy or menopause can cause hair loss in females. People who have hair loss problems are advised to take care of their hair. For one of the common hair loss problem, male pattern
hair loss is treated at an early stage it would its successful results. be very helpful. Apart from reducing hair fall, Surgical hair transplant: This process hair loss treatments involve aiding growth in involves transplanting the hair follicles in the hair. If internal parts of your body function bald patches. In each follicle up to four hairs well, then your hair would be silky and shiny. can be transplanted. In this treatment, hair is Illnesses also lead to hair fall, but vitamins picked from other areas of your scalp where and minerals help in hair growth. hair is still thick. There are many factors for hair loss that No doubt, the aforesaid processes are includes aging, genetic, stress-related and expensive and most of the people are environmental factors. Age related hair loss unable to afford hair loss treatments. is one of the common factors of hair loss Keeping in mind their requirements, a that takes place when the natural re-growth number of treatments are available at process slows or stops. Remember, affordable rates. For getting hair loss everyone looses and average of 100 hair per treatment at the lower rate, you need to day. Problem occurs when your hair growth make a comprehensive search through the slows and/or stops re-growing. internet. Apart from hassle free and less time Aside these, perming, colouring and consuming, online facility is one of the best bleaching can also cause hair loss. Tight ways to be well educated of hair loss pony-tails or braids can cause hair loss as treatments. these can pull the hair from the roots. So, make an extensive search for getting hair loss treatments, solutions and products. Due to competition in the market, hair loss treatments, solutions and products can be available at affordable rates. Some of the better >¥Yz>®*^^® >¥^¡ NANNIES & COMPANIONS INC. hair loss treatments are *>Ê> i>`ÊvÀÊÞÕÀÊv>ÞÊV>ÀiÊii`Ã° as follows: Bio matrix ÛiÊÕÃÊ>ÊV>ÊÌ`>Þt treatment: Known as * ««iÊÛiÊ >iÃ]Ê+ÕiLiVÊÕÊ*>ÀÃ]Ê hair weaving, the bio
>Ài}ÛiÀÃÊvÀÊÌ iÊ `iÀÞÊ>`Ê-«iV>Ê ii`Ã° matrix treatment 1Ê/ ÊEÊ*,/Ê/ ÊUÊ6 ÊEÊ6 "1/ involves covering the " ÊEÊ-",/Ê/ ,ÊUÊ-1 ,Ê* /-Ê6 bald patch. Nowadays, äxÈÈÈÓÓÓnÊ",Ê£nääÓ£näx this treatment has become popular x£Ê Õ`>ÃÊ-ÌÀiiÌÊ >ÃÌÊ1ÌÊÎÊ7 ÌLÞ among people due to ÜÜÜ°V>À`>>iÃ°VÊÊÞÀ>JV>À`>>iÃ°V
58 Home & Garden
Tile offers a way to add personality to your home
In today's world of personalization, making something "your own" or unique is the name of the game. Consumers are personalizing their fashion, work, religion, education and travel, so it only follows that they want to make their home a reflection of their taste and style. "For centuries, the Spanish have long understood the need to express one's self. Spanish tile designers have drawn on the past and looked to the future to create pieces that will appeal to any and every style. Personalization is very much in vogue, self-expression in the design world has created many eclectic and exciting interpretations of the classics," says Patti Fasan, International Ceramic Tile Consultant. So, how do you insert a personal take on design when using tile in your home? How about constructing a mosaic, adding an insert or punching up your current design with color and pattern? Tile manufacturers from Spain have developed technical methods that make using tile easy and cost effective. Here are some ideas for your home:
Mosaics A mosaic is a picture or design made of little pieces of glass, stone or tile, called tesserae, set into mortar or concrete. Mosaics can be used on floors, walls or ceilings. The overall design created by the tesserae can be geometric or create words and pictures. Tile of Spain manufacturer Onix specializes in recycled glass mosaics and can recreate intricate designs using
small tile pieces. Because of the extremely low water absorption rate of glass tiles, a glass mosaic is a perfect accent for pools and bathrooms. Mesh mosaic options offer an easy way to install tile mosaics in your home. For example, Keros, and Keraben, both Tile of Spain branded manufacturers, have captured the beauty of stone in their tile options. The small pieces are mounted to mesh for easy installation. When installed correctly, the overall effect is a field of individually set small tiles. Another option, Rosa Gres and Halcon, offer a mesh mounted mosaic which is reminiscent of trencadis. Trencadis is a type of mosaic created from broken pieces of tiles, glass or just about anything. Indeed, mosaic art has changed over the centuries. Mosaics today are more versatile, and somewhat more durable, than their antique counterparts, but their beauty remains and is bound to be a great addition to personalizing your home.
Tacos, Listelos, Insets and Borders Little pieces of tile can make a huge impact. Tacos, for example, are small decorative pieces usually just an inch or two across. When strategically placed in a solid field, they can add visual interest and contrast. Tacos come in solid or decorated options and can be set next to another tile or within a tile. Long, thin pieces, called listelos, are available in metal, ceramic and glass. Listelos can be used to frame a mirror,
create a chair rail or to simply add a personal touch. Listelos offer a unique way of mixing design elements. Try combining a metal listelo with stone inspired tile for a contemporary twist on a classic look. Or, mix a glass listelo with concrete inspired tile to give a clean, modern edge to a space. For a one-of-a-kind custom inset, manufacturers from Spain are using water jet technology to add graphic design into tile. This allows designers to create a logo, geometric shape or even text. Apavisa and Rosa Gres are manufacturers who use this technique to create unusual and exclusive motifs. A decorative border can make a personal statement in just a little space. A brightly colored and patterned tile can be used to highlight a special architectural detail of a room or even make ordinary detail pop. The Carey Series from Guibosa presents Crema and Cafe colored field tiles. The decorative pieces feature a modern graphic pattern perfect to use as a focal point to jazz up a room. Tile can also be reminiscent of a time gone by, a unique decor trend that has recently been popularized. Ticsa is a Tile of Spain manufacturer that takes inspiration directly from old-world influences. They are masters of handmade terra cotta tiles that include mosaic designs and hand painted decorative pieces. No matter what design you choose, tile can be a way to make your home unique to you. For more about tile produced in Spain, call (305) 446-4387 or visit www.spaintiles.info. Courtesy of ARAcontent
Home & Garden 59
Helen Parnell Tel: 403-932-8888 www.moving2alberta.com MLS: C3340604 City: Calgary
Price: $318,500 Bedrooms: 2
Province: Alberta Bathrooms: 2
This end unit town house is located in the heart of Mckenzie Towne within walking distance to all amenties. This home offers lots of upgrades Oak kitchen cabinets, island w/eating bar & paddle fan over kitchen nook, Tile entrance, stairs and bathrooms, "Lauzon' Red Oak pacific natural hardwood throught out, Custom linds & Kitchen curtains , Impressive Pewter & Crystal Chandelier in the 10 ft. entrance. Duo-vac vaccum system, upgraded appliances, ADT security system. The upper floor has two bedrooms with walk-in closets and ensuites, Private fenced front yard with concrete patio double attached garage and more.
MLS: C3339815 City: Cochrane
Price:$670,000 Bedrooms: 2
Province: Alberta Bathrooms: 3
How much better can this get than your own private park as you sip coffee from your deck (duradeck/glass rails) or from the sunroom/green house that is heated and has automatic water system. This bungalow walkout features infloor heating in the lower level, kitchen, foyer and bathrooms(high efficiency boiler system). The hardwood flooring is thruout main level plus tile in kitchen & bathroom, foyer and lower level. The home has vaulted ceilings, three bedrooms, two more down. Another 3pc bathroom, built in oak cabinetry in family room, painted ceilings thruout,sound system RI, There is oak package in kitchen with new appliances & quartz countertops.
MLS: C3307045 City: Cochrane
Price: $555,000 Bedrooms: 5
Province: Alberta Bathrooms: 2
BEST OF BOTH WORLDS, 2 HOMES IN ONE, RARE LEGAL SUITE. Live up and rent down. This unique walkout bunglow in a cul-de-sac location has a rare LEGAL 2 bedroom suite in the basement with own private entrance and patio. Rental income from this suite can be used as income when appying for a mortgage. The main entrance has a great slate floor and den/home office. Upstairs you have a good size kitchen with island come kitchen table. Family room has cosy fireplace already fitted with wood surround. There is also a formal dining room or this could be the home office! hardwood flooring throughout.
MLS: C3313479 City: Cochrane
Price: $599,000 Bedrooms: 4
Province: Alberta Bathrooms: 2
What a walkout bungalow! This house has recently been renovated with new paint throughout. Upon entering you are welcomed by a bright clean house with the MOUNTAIN view right from the new front door! The main level features the kitchen with tons of counter space, new stove, and light fittings, corner pantry, all black appliances and rounded high breakfast bar. There is also a private den/office and large mud room. The large Master Bedroom has a spacious 4-piece en suite with soaker tub and walk-in closet. The main level boasts incredible windows that allows lots of natural light.
MLS: C3345205 City: Cochrane
Price: $369,900 Bedrooms: 4
Province: Alberta Bathrooms: 3
Easy walking distance to downtown and all stores from this good bungalow facing onto a small green park and a cul-de-sac. Owner has upgraded roof to metal, windows have all been metal clad on exterior, new laminate flooring in eating area and kitchen, both main floor baths have all upgraded fixtures and even the lino is new, new lighting fixtures, new instant hot water tap, new furnace, new fence in back yard, driveway and sidewalk have been coated with aggregate finish and the list goes on. The lower level is developed with 1 bedroom and a den that can be used as a bedroom, a 3 piece bath, a bar, a laundry room with cupboards and a sink and a huge rumpus room. This home is made for families and you can move right in.
60 Home & Garden
Million dollar homes We thought we would take a look at some of the most expensive homes on the market today. Although most of us would have to win a rather substantial lottery in order to even consider any of these, it is interesting to see how the other half lives.â€?
This impressive property is for sale in Burnaby, British Columbia for a cool $25,000,000. For that tidy sum you would get a 14,611 square foot home with five bedrooms and seven bathrooms on a 1.3 acre private and secure estate. It also boasts a tennis court, racquet ball court, swimming pool and a self-contained caretaker suite. If you fancy putting in an offer then you will need to contact Sothebyâ€™s International Realty.
This five bedroom, four bathroom home sits of 466 acres of Alberta countryside. The home is 5,700 square feet with stunning mountain views. Amenities include a indoor swimming pool, hot tub, golf green, tennis court, BBQ room, trout ponds, fishing cabin and a cowboy and indian movie set with fort! It also has a 2,000 sq ft lodge, hired help residences and lots more. Contact the realtor for more details or to offer the $12,500,000 asking price.
This property located in Caledon, Ontario sits on 150 acres of rolling hills. The impressive 28,000 square foot home has 11 bedrooms. Extras include a nanny suite, exercise room, hot tub, indoor pool, steam room, ponds, tennis court, clay shooting course and other buildings. If you have a spare $24,000,000 the why not make an offer to the agents?
If you have $11,000,000 to invest then why not consider this beautiful property near Montreal. It has a magnificent view of Lake of Two Mountains and sits on 2.5 acres of stunningly landscaped gardens. The house has 13,500 square feet of living space with six bedrooms and four bathrooms. Extras include a swimming pool, gourmet kitchen, solarium and a guest cottage. Contact the agents for more details.
Home & Garden 61
Now we have seen the most expensive properties that Canada has to offer now we will look at more slightly less expensive homes. They are still million dollar properties but just a little cheaper!
If you want to live in the Winnipeg area of Manitoba then you might want to consider this 9,000 sq ft property on offer for a cool $3,250,000. It sits on 1.7 acres of manicured landscaped gardens with a rock stream and sport court. It has five bedrooms, six bathrooms and has been extensively renovated since its original construction in 1935. The Century 21 realtor will be happy to hear from you.
With stunning views at Hunts Point in Nova Scotia this 5 year old property will set you back $2,950,000. It has four bedrooms, three bathrooms and over 5,000 sq ft of living space. The property comes with 390 feet of ocean frontage and has its own heated pool. Why not make an offer?
This amazing property near Prince Albert can be yours for $2,600,000. It offers three bedrooms and the home comes fully furnished with an art collection. This is a waterfront property with a pool. The home is 7,400 sq feet and is located on over 5 acres of land. Features include a boat dock, landscaping, billiards room, library, home theatre room and mechanical room. See full details here.
This magnificent mansion is located in St.Andrews in New Brunswick on five acres for $1,750,000. It has eight bedrooms and eight bathrooms with over 6,000 sq ft of living space. The best feature has to be the panoramic views over the ocean. If you want to make this your new home then contact the agent.
62 Home & Garden
Top wallpaper myths debunked For many homeowners, the word "wallpaper" conjures images of messy installation and time-consuming teardown. But you might be surprised to know that modern wallpaper technology makes it easy to add this decorating touch to your home. The professionals with the Wallcoverings Association bust the top wallpaper myths:
Myth: Wallpaper is stuffy and old-fashioned. Reality: Wallpaper may be old -- it's been around at least since the 1600s -- but it is very much fashion-forward. In fact, the fashion industry itself has embraced wallpaper by splashing vivid patterns in major advertising campaigns and in fashion features in magazines like Vogue.
Myth: Wallpaper is limiting. Reality: Just the opposite is true. There are no rules. You can mix two or as many patterns as you want, in a single room. New York design firm D'Aquino Monaco hung 27 wallpaper patterns throughout a four-story stairwell in a New York town house. Why not hang a pattern or striped wallpaper horizontally instead of vertically? There is no limit to the imagination.
rooms appear more expansive. On the other hand, a very small pattern in a large space can become more of a texture than a pattern and lend the room an intimacy that might otherwise be lacking.
Myth: Hanging wallpaper is timeconsuming and labor-intensive. Reality: New technology is making wallpapers simpler to hang and remove, and even easier and less messy than paint. These easy-hang wallpapers are known as non-woven and high-performance wallpapers. Installing easy-hang wallpapers is even quicker than painting, which requires smoothing the wall to perfection, applying at least two coats, and waiting hours or days between steps -- whereas wallpapers have always been a great solution for problem walls. These wallpapers adhere to walls with magnet force, yet are easily repositionable. Non-woven wallpapers do not expand or contract, so there's no need for "booking" the wallpaper, or folding it for a few minutes to let it expand. Once it's up, what you see is what you get, as seams won't ever separate.
Myth: Wallpaper is not ecofriendly. Reality: Wallpaper is typically made of
Myth: Wallpaper and modernism paper, which is renewable and biodegradable. Other options are made with don't mix. Reality: In the last decade, America has had a love affair with modernist design. But minimal modern interiors often look too sterile to live in comfortably. The solution can be found in graphic wallpaper on an expanse of a single wall. Interior designers also like to juxtapose a very traditional pattern such as a floral or chinoiserie -- often in vibrant, updated colors -- with clean, contemporary furnishings.
Myth: You can't hang art on wallpapered walls. Reality: As long as there has been wallpaper, serious art collectors have lined their wallpapered walls with art. With its repeat pattern, wallpaper is designed as a background, to lend a unifying structure to a room. Even if it's a bold design, wallpaper complements -- rather than competes with -- art.
Myth: Large-scale patterns are for big rooms and small patterns for tiny rooms. Reality: While large-scale patterns look gorgeous in rooms with exceptionally high ceilings, they can also make smaller
grasses, sisal, rice, cork and parchment. Most wallpaper inks are water-based with very low V.O.C. (Volatile Organic Compounds) emissions -- significantly lower than paint -- and are very environmentally friendly.
Myth: Wallpaper is hard to remove. Reality: Steamers, strippers and chemical solvents are a thing of the past with today's more technologically superior papers known as non-woven and high-performance wallpapers. They require nothing more than a quick tug at a corner and an entire sheet is down in seconds.
Myth: You can't wallpaper over old wallpaper. Reality: Indeed you can, if the old paper is flat. In fact, you can cut the time of installation in half if you go this route. Bear in mind that it won't work if the old paper has an embossed texture or if you test it and find that the old paper will bleed through the new sheets. A pigmented wallpaper primer is a must before you start the papering process. Courtesy of ARAcontent
Home & Garden 63
Prepare your home now for the winter ahead We all know that winter is just around the
Insulation should not be restricted to walls and lofts but also to plumbing. Any pipes in cold areas should be insulated to prevent heat loss. Never run pipes outside as they may freeze causing untold damage and resulting in large repair bills.
corner but did you know that there are things you can do now in the autumn which will help reduce your heating bills as well as make your home warmer during those winter months? Depending on whether you have a new home which meets the current efficiency standard or an older home which has lots of potential for heat loss how you prepare will differ. However all homeowners should take the time to check their homes now in order to benefit during the winter.
Plumbing Apart from insulating pipes you should also check for leaks. Any leaks found should be repaired to prevent damp. Make sure any gaps around plumbing fixtures are sealed such as around he base of a toilet or sink. This will not only prevent damage to floors and ceilings it will also cut back on drafts. You might want to consider installing a dehumidifier which will remove moisture from the air. This will not only reduce the likelihood of any damp or mould forming it will also make the air you breather better quality.
Windows and doors Windows and doors hold the greatest potential for heat loss in the home. You should check all your windows and doors to make sure they all close correctly. If necessary make those little adjustments, lubricate hinges, tighten screws etc. Check the caulking as this can deteriorate over time especially with extremes of temperature. Re-caulk if necessary as this will prevent heat escaping from those little gaps. You might also want to add weather-stripping to doors and windows. These are strips of insulation that can be placed around the edges of windows and doors to prevent heat from the house escaping. This is a very cheap and effective measure. You might also want to use draft stoppers along the bottom of doors. If you have older windows that are not double glazed you might want to consider buying insulation kits from your local DIY store. Various options are available to suit most applications and these can help to keep heat in during the winter and out during the summer.
Chimney If you have a chimney make sure you get a certified professional to check it out before using, likewise a wood stove. Make sure there are no birds nests or debris in the chimney or flues. Keep chimneys well insulated and recirculate heat throughout the house by way of fans.
Heating and cooling Make sure you get a certified professional to check your heating system before winter use. All heating and cooling systems should be checked annually.
Exterior Get your furnace checked before winter
You will also want to check the exterior of
your home before the winter sets in. Check evestroughs for debris, particularly for leaves during the fall season. Keeping them clear One of the simplest and most effective ways to keep your furnace working efficiently will ensure that any water in them will flow freely. During the winter months the is to change or clean your filter regularly. If your filter is dirty or clogged with dust then it evestroughs should also be clear of ice build will be forcing the furnace to work harder and up to prevent damage. If you have an outside tap then you should thus cost you more to run. Keep all your registers clean and free from remove any hoses that are attached and drain the tap. Insulating the tap is also a dust by vacuuming regularly as this will not only make the air in your home cleaner it will good idea to prevent pipes from cracking. Cover your air conditioning unit with an also mean your system is working better. Make sure all the ducts, pipes etc that run insulating cover to prevent winter damage. You should also walk around your home to around your home are properly sealed and make sure that caulking round windows, insulated where necessary. If you havenâ€™t already got a programmable vents, doors etc are intact and repair as necessary. thermostat then you should invest in one. The money will be well spent as you will be able to regulate the temperature of your Roof home at any given time. You should set the thermostat to be cooler during the night and Make sure your roof is fit for the next winter. warmer during the day. Not only will this Check shingles to make sure none need make for a more comfortable living repairing. If snow and ice are able to get environment it will cut down on costs. under shingles it can result in damage to the
interior of the home which can be very expensive to repair.
Insulation around the home is vital to keep
heat in during the winter and out during the summer. Key areas to check are loft areas where heat can escape through the roof and interior walls that connect with outer walls or cold zones such as a garage.
By taking some simple inexpensive steps now, you can prevent major repairs later. You will also improve your own comfort levels and be in a better position to tackle those hard winter months.
Club& Garden 64Sequoia Home
Carol Brough - Sales Representative CENTURY 21 Lanthorn Real Estate Ltd., Brokerage* 102 Main Street, Picton, ON K0K 2T0 Tel: (0) 613-476-8039 Email: email@example.com
MLS: 2082916 City: Picton
Price: $389,900 Bedrooms: 4
Province: Ontario Bathrooms: 3
Century home on 21 acres, large custom built eat in kitchen [with Swiss flair]. Original woodwork, trim, hardwood floors and beautiful wood staircase and railings. Year round stream and spring fed pond [170' x 55']. Inground 32' x 16' pool, 2 barns plus machine shop with hydro. Perfect spot for horses. Virtual tour: http://www.Obeo.com/464995
MLS: 2085960 City: Picton
Price: $399,900 Bedrooms: 3
Province: Ontario Bathrooms: 2
Unique 4 year old custom built, bright, open concept home with commanding view of Smith's Bay and convenient waterfront access. Many exciting features include living and dining area with vaulted ceiling, skylights, gas fireplace and three sets of French doors opening onto a wrap around balcony overlooking the bay. Main floor family room, stunning kitchen with island. Full basement with 9' ceiling, double car garage with loft plus single carport and triple parking. Close to marina and vineyards.
MLS: 2081104 City: Adolphustown
Price: $259,900 Bedrooms: 4
Province: Ontario Bathrooms: 2
Hobby farm for horses. Newly renovated home on hill top. Original hardwood in living and dining rooms. All new windows (2007). New flooring in kitchen and bathrooms (2008). Main floor laundry and walk out to deck. Hill top views of orchard and Adolphus Reach from front porch.10+ acres with two quonset huts. One is used for stable for horses. 100' x 125' riding ring plus 4+ acres fenced pasture. Virtual tour: http://www.Obeo.com/464998
MLS: 2081511 City: Athol
Price: $649,000 Bedrooms: 2
Province: Ontario Bathrooms: 2
Custom built home on 2.73 acres with approximately 190' of waterfront on East Lake. Laminate, ceramic tile and carpet floors, 11 sets of French doors and double hung windows. Large living room with propane fireplace, ensuite bathroom with heated floor, 6' x 8' walk-in closet and claw foot slipper tub. Minutes to Sandbanks, wineries, local artist studio. Outbuilding has potential for studio. Virtual tour: http://www.Obeo.com/464859
Published on Oct 1, 2008
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