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THE Local Guide for Active Urban Families May 2011


Two Moms, Two Babies, One Family

Camp Guide, Part 2: Day Camps Pets, Travel, Nutrition and more...!

Happy Mother’s Day! May 2011


the smart choice in education enriched curriculum individualized reading, writing, math, science, computers, music, arts, French, sports, drama, yoga, dance specialized programs traditional 3 year cefa™ Junior Kindergarten program for 2-3, 3-4 and 4-5 year olds; cefa baby™ for 1-2 year olds excellent faculty cefa™ certified teachers also licensed in ece and trained in montessori and reggio. Loving and nurturing teachers inspire children to learn using exclusive cefa™ educational methods and games full day or part-time school on-site chef, classrooms of 12-16 children, cinema, circus, art room and art gallery West Vancouver 2008 Park Royal South 604.913.7713 Canada Way 4970 Canada Way 604.299.2373 Langley 100-19950 88th Avenue East 604.881.2332 North Vancouver 402-935 Marine Drive 604.929.2332 New Westminster 725 Carnarvon Street 604.777.0053 White Rock 15300 Croydon Drive 778.294.2646 Richmond 10811 No. 4 Road 604.275.2332 Vancouver 2946 Commercial Drive 604.879.2332 Kingsway 4021 Kingsway 604.568.8808

604 708-CEFA (2332)

Established in 1998




May 2011


Your Passport To Summer $45.00!

Fun for “Kids” ages 4 - 15 for only days of adventure July 1st – August 31st! Including September Dates!

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A different & unique event/activity every day of the summer!

Railway awly’s; West Coast Playland; Crash Cr ; Burnaby gy um of Anthropolo Heritage Park; Muse Gulf of ; rm Fa re nt neybee Ce Village Museum; Ho Maplewood e; tional Historic Sit Georgia Cannery Na iry Da res Ac or a Tour; Ald Farms; Rogers Aren eatre Th ; ey Pr of ds Bir ge Centre; Raptor Rid re Railway; anley Park Miniatu Under The Stars; St hop; Harbour seum; Opera Works Vancouver Police Mu t goes on! Cruise… and the lis

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Fill out the form or go online at: for more information as well as Membership Application. Please Print Clearly Child’s Name ________________________________ Age _______________ 2nd Child’s Name _____________________________ Age _______________ Address____________________________________ City _______________Postal _____________ Phone # ____________________________________ Parent’s Signature _____________________ (add more names on separate sheet of paper) limited Memberships Available!

Visit our website: or call “hotline” @ 604-983-9799


May 2011



THE Local Guide for Active Urban Families May 2011

Two Vancouver Moms Talk Shop

May 2011

Top Story Camp Guide, Part 2: Day Camps Pets, Travel, Nutrition and more...!

Happy Mother’s Day! May 2011


On Our Cover

Mom Tannis, with daughters Camille (seven), Manoe (five) and Denae (five months), is ready for Mother’s Day! Photographed by AG Photography Gina Spanos |

From the Editor 8 Editor’s Note 10 Contests 12 WCF Presents 30 Where to Find Us 30 Community Calendar


Horses, pups and dealing with loss.

Features 14 17 18 19 21 22 23


Mothering Is… Pets The Perfect Pup Pets To Ride or Not to Ride Pets Losing the Family Pet Camp Guide, Part 2: Day Camps! Family Travel Kid-Friendly on the Sunshine Coast Family Travel Surviving Airport Security with Kids


27 27 29

WCM Profile Two Moms, Two Babies, One Family WCM Events

Follow us on Twitter! 6

12 15 16 26

WestCoast Finds Finds for Mom, Camps, Travel and More! Health Farm to Table: Keeping Food Close to Home Parenting Staying Sane at the Table Reading Corner Surviving Motherhood in Stilettos, Local Growers & Holy Pets!

In Our Next Issue Sign Up for Our Email Blast And get Exclusive Access to Online Contests Latest Finds & Deals Special Offers Event Listings …and much more!

June It’s All About Dads! Summer Party Guide! Summer Learning WestCoast DAD The New Dad

May 2011


editor’s note Photographed by eclipseph

The phrase “working mother” is redundant. ~ Jane Sellman (American writer)


have often wondered what it would be like to be a full-time stay-at-home mom, rather than a “working” mom (let’s face it—all moms work). Judging by what I experienced during my maternity leave, it’s not that much easier, and, in fact, seems to give fewer excuses opportunities to get away from the offspring. I truly love what I do and who I get to do it with (that sounded better in my head). However, on certain days—and in certain moods—I look longingly back at those sometimes-quiet days when the only deadline was making sure to take a bathroom break before the baby woke up. Surprisingly, many career women and mompreneurs seem to feel the same way. We like being at home with our kids and working from home when possible. Despite the constant juggling act, the occasional interruption of “Mommy! I have to go POOOO!” during important conference calls, and absolutely no benefit plan, we wouldn’t think twice about going back to our full-time work-outside-the-home situations. This leads to an interesting conclusion. Mothers in the 50s and 60s were chained (you know, by social conventions, not actual chains) to their kitchens and roared their delight in shaking them off during the 70s. Moms in the 80s and 90s tried be all things to all people, and us? As we enter the teens of this century, what are we looking for? We’ve read a lot about work-life balance, living each moment, not sweating the small stuff, etc. But what does it all mean? Are we now aiming to be Zen masters with black belts in yoga, and a 25-hour work-week (for which we naturally receive full-time pay) that is perfectly synchronized with our kids’ schedules?


It turns out our goals are exactly the same as those of mothers two and three decades ago. We are still striving for perfection in whatever we undertake, whether it’s our careers, our kids or the mathematically-adjusted duvet on the bed. We don’t get paid for all that extra effort, so why do we do it? Love? Competition? Feelings of inadequacy? In honour of Mother’s Day, I would like to propose something a little different. Instead of striving to be the modern-day Martha Stewart-meets-Kim Kardashian, why don’t we strive to do—nothing. And as much nothing as possible. Imagine, a whole month of doing very little housework, chauffeuring, and anything else you can think of. Just do the bare minimum, and play hooky on the rest. If you can’t handle a month, try a week or even a day. And then use all that spare time to do—nothing. You don’t even have to read a book. Just get comfortable with yourself again, and enjoy the luxury of doing less. How Zen is that? Wishing you all a lazy—and happy—month,

13988 Maycrest Way, Suite 140, 2nd Floor Richmond, BC V6V 3C3 Tel: 604.249.2866 Fax: 604.247.1331 | ­Publisher Andrea Vance Managing Editor Anya Levykh Art Director & Layout Krysta Furioso Accounts Receivable & Bookkeeping Jennifer Brulé Administration / Editorial Assistant Jennifer Bruyns Advertising Inquiries | 604-249-2866 For distribution inquiries, please contact Jennifer Bruyns Contributors: Cassandra Anderton, Jillian Derksen, Sara Dimerman, Sean Heales, Claire Newell, Angela Poon,Gina Spanos, Diana Wursten, Angela Zimmerling, WestCoast Families (WCF) is an independent, regional parenting publication. As the Lower Mainland’s prime resource for happy, healthy & active families, WCF provides informative and relevant content. All contents copyrighted ©. Written permission from the publisher is required to reproduce, quote, reprint or copy any material from WestCoast Families. PUBLICATIONS MAIL 40027247 Published nine times per year in British Columbia, Canada. Total circulation: 50,000 For queries about editorial submissions, please view the contributor guidelines on our website. To submit a community calendar event or share your feedback, please email

May 2011



Enter to win any of these great prizes online at!

WIN! A Three (3) Night Family Stay at a Cottage in Sun Peaks (Value $1,000) This high-end, stand-alone four-bedroom fully-equipped chalet sits next to the 3rd hole of the golf course, is walking distance to the village and has a picturesque view of Sunburst Mountain. House sleeps up to 10 people. Features include full kitchen with granite countertops and stainless steel appliances, 3 TV/DVD combos, two gas fireplaces, secure two-car garage, private hot tub, washer/ dryer and is pet-friendly! Prize package includes a three-night stay, as well as two days of lift tickets for two adults and two children (for hiking/bike access) from Sun Peaks Resort. For more info, visit and search for “Fairway’s Cabins and Cottages—Cottage 14” under Accommodation.

Deadline to Enter: May 31, 2011

WIN! The iPad 2 from Digital Media Academy (Value $520) Use this 16GB version (with Wi-Fi) to develop killer apps, shoot HD video, take photos, make notes, create music on Garage Band, check email and keep in touch with your friends and family through Face Time and your favourite social networks. Digital Media Academy offers unique, high-tech summer camps for ages six to 18 that combine hands-on learning with a sophisticated, safe and positive environment. Learn about 3D modelling, robotics, game design, film and music video production, digital art and photography. Please Note: Prize does not include Smart Cover.

Deadline to Enter: May 31, 2011

WIN! One of Two (2) Day Out With Thomas Family Prize Packs! (Value $170 each)

WIN! The MEC Happy Trails Child Carrier Backpack (Value $110)

West Coast Railway Heritage Park 39645 Government Rd, Squamish June 4, 5, 11 & 12 Enjoy a magical day with Thomas and all his friends, when you and your family get to experience Day Out With Thomas! Includes family four-pack of tickets, train ride and many other Thomas activities, lunch vouchers for four people, and a $50 merchandise voucher for the giant Thomas merchandise tent with special items available only at this event. |

The MEC child carrier features a full backpack suspension system with padded hipbelts, and shoulder strap attachments that are good for user up to 183cm tall. Rain/sun hood, fleece-covered five-point child restraint harness straps, and diaper bag that clips off to become daypack included. For children up to 23kg.

Deadline to Enter: May 31, 2011

Deadline to Enter: May 20, 2011

WIN! One of 10 Family Passes to the Advance Screening of Kung Fu Panda 2! (Value $50 each) In Kung Fu Panda 2, the latest 3D animated family film from Dreamworks Animation, Po is now living his dream as The Dragon Warrior, protecting the Valley of Peace alongside his friends and fellow kung fu masters, The Furious Five. But Po’s new life of awesomeness is threatened by the emergence of a formidable villain, who plans to use a secret, unstoppable weapon to conquer China and destroy kung fu. Po must look to his past and uncover the secrets of his mysterious origins; only then will he be able to unlock the strength he needs to succeed.

For the most part, wind turbines appear to us in magazine articles or on television documentaries perhaps. But very few people have seen a wind turbine up close. And, until now, almost nobody on the planet has been able to say they’ve been inside one—let alone that they’ve been to the top of one. On The Eye of the Wind turbine tour, an experienced guide will lead you on a mountaintop excursion culminating in a breathtaking visit to the top of the turbine. Inside the world’s only elevator-accessible wind turbine with a clear glass viewPOD, stand in awe of 360-degree views as you come within metres of the massive rotating blades and face the future of responsible energy. Don’t forget to check out the EPIC show May 13 to 15 at the Vancouver Convention Centre! |

Deadline to Enter: May 10, 2011

Deadline to Enter: May 31, 2011

May 21, 10:30am in Burnaby


WIN! A Grouse Mountain “Eye of the Wind Turbine” Family Prize Pack from EPIC Sustainable Living Expo (Value $300)

May 2011


wcf presents

EPIC: The Vancouver Sun Sustainable Living Expo Vancouver Convention Centre West May 13-15 Western Canada’s largest smart lifestyle consumer tradeshow and eco-marketplace returns for its fifth year. EPIC features hundreds of companies and products to help consumers live, play and work in a more sustainable way. Over 300 exhibitors provide consumers with a wide variety of the latest high quality, stylish sustainable products and services; with everything from food to fashion, weddings, home décor, health and beauty, transportation and more. This year’s EPIC Main Stage speakers include the entertaining commentary of Canadian television and radio personality George Stroumboulopoulos, who will provide his unique perspective and opinion on the environment and what it actually means to “live sustainably”. Don’t miss the EPIC KidZone, Wellness Spa and EPICurean Food Corner too! Buy tix online and save! See website for hours and ticket prices.

Surrey Children’s Festival Surrey Arts Centre and Bear Creek Park May 26-28 More than 18,000 people – children, parents, families, school groups – will be inspired by incredible performances and educational hands-on activities at the 7th Annual Surrey Children’s Festival. Celebrate our rich and diverse cultural heritage through performing and visual arts experiences.

westcoast finds

Cool Finds for Mom, Camp, Travel and More!

Colourful Grass Eco-Friendly and Vegan Footwear! Started by a Vancouver Island mom, these shoes are made from sustainable, ethicallysourced, recycled and recyclable materials, and the only footprint they leave is one of style! Vandana ($78) and Alice ($75) styles pictured here. App Started by a traveler weary with bus tours and bulky maps, offers customizable walking tours for over 180 cities around the world. Explore everything form pub crawls in Dublin to fashion boutiques in Buenos Aires. Each city walking tour comes with several self-guided tours, including visits to popular attractions as well as more offthe-beaten-path destinations. Plus, this app doesn’t require an internet connection once downloaded, so forget those roaming charges! $2.99-$4.99 per city on iTunes.

Luxe’s Modern Mom and Daughter Designs This local design company has made “matchymatchy” cool again with this simple and elegant necklaces. $78 each. View entire collection online.

This simplified line utilizes multiple twisted strands of gold and silver to create various designs. Prices vary.


Can’t face camping without your morning shot of triple-java? Handpresso’s Wild Dome Pod Espresso Machine may look like a bike pump, but it makes a mean espresso, and because it works on pressure, no batteries are needed. $110 at MEC.

Chef’s Wheel App

Sugar Baby Retro Looks for Mom and Kids Tiffany Twist Line Debuts for Mother’s Day

Espresso-on-the-Go from Mountain Equipment Co-op

Designed by a BC mom, these pretty-as-pie aprons are a nifty throwback to June Cleaver and the age of kitsch. With “party” and “retro” designs for all ages, you might be looking for an excuse to get in the kitchen! Starting at $49.99.

Convert over 250 ingredients into any measurement you need, use the oven chart to convert Fahrenheit into Celsius or Gas Mark, read tips on proper cooking methods for chicken, pork and more, and peruse the substitution guide and Grandma’s Measurements to bring those old recipes up to date! $0.99 on iTunes.

Did you know we’re online? Read our current

issue from your laptop, iPad or even iPhone! Just visit us at and click on the cover image! You can click through on any highlighted link, including ads, to read more!

Zox of the Forest Why hire a clown when you can hire a ZOX? Playful skits, theatrical storytelling, animal puppet characters

& interactive guitar sing-along songs.

Zox is perfect for children’s birthday & Christmas parties too!

David Cooper (604) 710-4234 |

Onya Bags

the plastic bag alternative! From pouch to bag experience

Onya Bags are made from soft, silky, strong parachute materials. They are small, light and conveniently pack into their own pouches, clipping onto your handbags, belts, key rings... with handy carabiners.

May 2011


wcf feature

What is Mothering... By Jillian Derksen


othering is…

Growth, it is becoming more than you thought were, overnight. It is digging deep. It is putting your kids first (most of the time). Advocating on your child’s behalf even if you’ve been a total wimp your entire life and never once stood up for yourself. You will do it for your kids and you will surprise yourself. Feeling a terrifying amount of love for another human being, “like watching your heart run around outside your body” (Elizabeth Stone).

Crazy love and devotion to a human being who screams at, pukes on and demands things from you constantly. Learning to ask for help and realizing your strength in being able to do so. Telling the truth even if the truth isn’t what people want to hear.

Late nights and early mornings and giving more than you knew you had in you to give, and being happy to do it (mostly).

Pregnancy, labour, birth and the rest of your lives together.

Vulnerability at its most fevered pitch. Mothering expands your world and helps you to gain new perspective on everyone you meet.

Most of all, mothering is the way your heart feels like it will explode every time your little person shines that big bright smile your way.

Endless giggles with funny little people that you didn’t even know most of your life but who will dominate your mind and heart for the rest of it.

Jillian Derksen is a registered nurse and mother of two children (ages five and three) who works with post-partum mothers and babies.


Farm to Table Keeping Food Close to Home


health By Angela Poon

or many parents, it can be a challenge just to get dinner on the table each night. Throw in some kohlrabi and a pound of mustard greens, and it can seem nearly impossible. But for a growing number of Lower Mainland families, the rewards of eating locally are worth the occasional edible conundrum. These families are taking part in an alternative food network known as community-supported agriculture (CSA). A concept first designed in the 1960s in Germany, Switzerland and Japan, the idea took root in the United States in 1984, and has since grown throughout North America. This socio-economic model of agriculture and food distribution calls for a community of individuals to buy shares in a farmer’s operations in advance of their growing season, providing a direct connection between producer and consumer. While farmers have a committed group of members who share in the risks associated with a non-commercialized farm, such as bad weather or pest infestation, shareholders are given access to fresh, organic, and local produce. “CSA programs are a way of involving people in the great bounty and in the risk,” says Emi Do, CSA Coordinator for Vancouver’s Southland Farms. “They help smaller farmers establish themselves, and at the same time help engage consumers in food production.” For many CSA members, learning about how food is produced is just as important as the food itself. Most farmers offer their members the chance to visit their farms, and some even encourage pitching in. “I like to communicate to my members: ‘I am your farmer, this is your land,’” says Stephen Gallagher, owner and farmer of Langley’s Nathan Creek Organic Farm. “We have many members whose kids grow up weeding and playing in the trees. It helps connect families to the reality that most people have lived for the last thousands of years.” For Vancouver parents Aaron and Kveta Rose, participating in a CSA program helps them see the bigger picture behind the food on their plates. “It makes you think about where your food comes from and all the hard work that goes into producing it,” notes Kveta. “Basically one farmer works to produce food for all of the families in [our] program, so every bite we eat is connected to his hard labour.” Another learning opportunity for new members is the produce itself. As CSA farmers grow produce best suited to the west coast climate, members receive a pre-selected collection of produce each week that includes a healthy amount of salad greens, root vegetables, herbs, and beans, among more basic fare such as tomatoes and cucumbers. “The program really stretched our adventurous eating,” notes Michelle Hiebert, who lives in Abbotsford with her husband and two teenaged sons. Joining the Skeeter Farm CSA program for the first time last summer, Hiebert was surprised to find produce such as grape leaves, garlic shoots, and ground cherries in her produce box. “We didn’t start off with common vegetables, and I worried what I was going to make. But my kids loved it and were quite eager to see what was going to be in the bag each week. It was fun, and it was more of an adventure than anything else.” According to Do, members tend to learn about new kinds of vegetables for the first time through CSA programs because local grocery stores stock the same basic vegetables year round, cutting out a lot of the diversity that actually exists in produce. “CSAs are an opportunity to learn about new foods and to have a varied diet,” she notes. “Produce like kohlrabi, sprouting broccoli, bok choy, and mustard greens are all incredibly nutritious.” The Roses see the program as an opportunity to teach their young son Owen to have a healthy attitude towards food. “The diverse food forces you to be more creative and excited about cooking,” notes Aaron, who, along with wife Kveta, participates in a weekly communal meal where friends take turns dreaming up epicurean delights with each week’s

harvest. “We hope this means Owen will be more interested in exploring food, and he’ll pick up on those same feelings.” While the educational component helps draw families in, parents admit it’s the taste that keeps them coming back year after year. Tiffinie Hammerer, a mother of two from Boundary Bay, was shocked at how much better the food from Earthwise Farm is compared to her grocery store fare. “We were big organic consumers already, but the flavours even in organic produce are just not the same as produce from the garden,” Hammerer says. Mission’s Connie Cooper agrees. Even though she grew up on a farm, she hadn’t given a second thought to her adult food habits until friends convinced her to try the CSA program at Abbotsford’s Abundant Acre Family Farm. “We had one big bag of carrots that were so delicious, they were devoured in the first two days!” exclaims Cooper. “Plus, there’s an excitement in eating food that is good and healthy for you.” According to Get Local, a program run by the non-profit Farm Folk/City Folk, which works to cultivate a local, sustainable food system in the Lower Mainland, local produce boasts superior flavour because it’s only picked when fully ripe and is delivered to the consumer immediately. Imported produce, on the other hand, is picked weeks before ripening to avoid spoilage during distribution, and therefore can be lacking in taste, texture, colour, and nutrients. While CSA programs offer many benefits, they do come with some drawbacks. Most CSA farmers only have the growing capacity to produce crops during the ideal growing season—generally from about early June to late October. Although some seasons can continue as late as December and other farmers offer winter box programs, most smaller farms generally provide food for about 16 to 20 weeks each year, ranging in price from $350 to $600 annually. This means CSA members have to look elsewhere for their produce during winter. Do notes it’s important not to abandon food values in the winter. “Remember to look for ecological, sustainable options,” she says. “Try not to buy produce grown in a hothouse, learn about preserving vegetables from the summer, and shop at local farmers’ markets to buy food from organic farmers who have the infrastructure for winter growing.” Other members have found it difficult to collect just the right amount of food each week. Because each week’s portion depends completely on the growing season, some members can find themselves with too little produce, and others with too much. Overall, however, local parents have found the program to be a positive experience for themselves as well as for their children. “We’ve signed up again and we mention it to everyone we know,” says Hammerer. “My kids are trying new things, and as they get older they’ll only continue to become much more adventurous with their food choices.” To view a list of the CSA programs available in the Lower Mainland and across British Columbia, visit the Farm Folk/City Folk website at Angela Poon is a Vancouver-based freelance writer who plans on shopping at her local farmers’ market this summer.

Not ready for a CSA? Try these programs instead! CSA membership may not be for everyone, especially for families who enjoy choosing their produce throughout the year. Not to fear; there are plenty of local, organic options available! • Visit a farmers’ market. Available in most Lower Mainland cities throughout the summer (and some throughout the winter), these events allow consumers to handpick their produce while still getting the opportunity to meet farmers personally and eat local, organic food. Visit • Sign up for a food delivery service. Both NOWBC Co-op and operate home delivery services, offering local food as well as organic food not able to be grown locally (e.g. Bananas), and sustainable kitchen and houseware products. Visit and

May 2011



Staying Sane at the Table How to Dine Out With Your Kids

By Sean Heales


o you ever find yourself daydreaming about that amazing dinner you and your partner had together…just the two of you…so long ago? Do you find yourself walking by restaurants that would have looked so inviting years ago, but now the “Not Kid-Friendly” flag flies up immediately? In some ways it almost seems unfair that once we become parents with young children, we are relegated to the kid-friendly restaurants where a nice glass of merlot is traded for a tablecloth you can colour on, and a delicious crème brulée becomes a complimentary bowl of ice cream served as the bill arrives. The reality is you have two options: Get someone to mind the kids and make that reservation for two. Or…take the entire flock for dinner. The first option does not require a manual and by the time you and your partner decide it’s time to spend the extra money, you definitely need it. The second option doesn’t have to be so daunting as long as you follow some easy steps.

Step 1: Plan Ahead Dropping into a restaurant on the spur of the moment without proper preparations can end in disaster. Choose your restaurant, and, yes, it should be reasonably kid-friendly. At the end of the day, it needs to meet everyone’s needs, not just the kids. My wife and I have our regular restaurants that run the gamut from very kid-friendly (lots of props and a serious children’s menu) to casual dining restaurants where the kids can still be mildly entertained and we can feel like adults. We try and mix it up to avoid feeling like we are stuck in a rut. If the restaurant runs a bit light on the children’s entertainment, make sure you bring something along. Just don’t overdo it, as you don’t want to spend your whole evening picking up Hot Wheels and Lego off the floor. Of course, for babies or toddlers ensure you bring all the supplies you might require: bottles, bibs, wipes, snacks, etc. Nothing is more stressful than realizing you don’t have something you need.

Step 2: Arrive Early My wife and I used to work in the restaurant industry years ago and we remembered that there was always a bit of a lull between when a restaurant opened its doors and when the serious diners arrived. Typically, we like to show up at a restaurant between five and five-thirty to avoid the dreaded “Wait List Purgatory.” By arriving early we get right in and to a table before the kids start to lose their focus. Take a few moments to get your kids set up and comfortable. What often follows this is a period of calm where you and your partner can take the time to pay attention to each other. This is the opportunity to have that “How was your day” conversation.

Step 3: Know What You Want As I mentioned, my wife and I have our regular haunts we frequent when dining out with our kids. The kids typically do not deviate from their standard orders—grilled cheese and fries—however, it helps if you have a good idea of what you are going to order in advance, too. Save the dining “experience” for that night out with the reservation for two when you can order some cocktails and peruse the menu without having to pick up the green crayon from the floor. Most restaurants even have on-line menus that can be very helpful for those who just cannot seem to make up their mind. Take a look at the menu before you leave your house and try to have a bit of an idea of what you might want to have. It helps speed up the process a bit and allows you to spend more time paying attention to your kids or each other.


Step 4: Don’t Sweat the Vegetables For some people eating everything in front of you is a mantra heard at most household dinner tables. This can frequently lead to some sort of standoff at home but, believe me, this is not a place you want to go when in public. Remember, dining out for you may simply translate into being fed and not having to do the prep or cleanup. For your kids, it’s an adventure. Ease up on the rules. You will find the evening less confrontational and you will be able to devote that saved energy to your partner. Most kids realize their meals come with some sort of dessert, so this is where they tend to lock their sights anyway.

Step 5: Be Mindful of Other Diners Of course your kids are adorable, but remember that just because you are out with your kids doesn’t mean everyone else needs to babysit or entertain them. Some of those people may be on their “reservation for two” night. That being said, some people can’t resist making faces or waving at your cute kids—especially if they are babies or toddlers. This may even take some of the onus off you to have to micromanage your flock. Just be mindful of the situation. Your kid popping up in the booth behind might be adorable the first few times but try to curb it if it becomes excessive. Remember too that restaurants are typically lively and noisy places and as much as you may think you are…you are not the only one in the restaurant with kids. I’ve been in restaurants where people have apologized to others around for their kids’ behaviour and yet in reality, they were for the most part unnoticed. When you are being hyper-vigilant of your kid’s behaviour, your sense of anxiety will increase dramatically and your evening out will seem like it is moving in slowmotion. Try to relax and understand that your kids are not behaving as badly as you think they are. Others understand your situation and will pay it no mind. Remember that kids feed off the emotions of their parents. If you are stressed and upset, there is a great chance they will become stressed and upset too, and the way they express this is in meltdowns and tantrums.

Step 6: Cheque Please! Towards the end of your meal is when you have likely depleted your bag of tricks for keeping your kids entertained and fed. You may be tired and so may your kids. The food is gone and everything that could possibly be coloured has been. If your child’s meal comes with some sort of dessert, you may want to ask for the bill to come with the sweets. Waiting for a bill runs a close second to “Wait List Purgatory.” Remembering Step 2, you have arrived early, so by the time you are winding down and getting ready to leave, the restaurant has likely gotten busy. All of the attention you were getting when you were your waiter’s only table may be all but disappearing at this point as they struggle to maintain a busy section. Getting the bill along with your desserts or as the waiter has started to clear the last dishes from the table ensures you can make a quick escape before everyone crashes. If you really need to make a fast exit, plan ahead by bringing cash so you don’t have to wait around for a credit card machine. Dining out with a young family should not be something to be feared. I know people who adamantly refuse to go to restaurants with their kids because the stress is too much to handle. I honestly think this is a shame. Just remember to balance your attention to your kids with your attention to each other and be proactive. Approach the situation like anything else you do as parents. You don’t send your kids off to school in the morning without any planning or preparation, so why should dining out be any different? Make sure you take care of your needs as well as your children’s. Relax and enjoy the time out as a family. Order that glass of Merlot, relax, and bon appétit!

pet feature

The Perfect Pup By Diana Wursten


cute, huggable, kissable puppy is something you dream about but never really expect to get. Then one evening after supper your mom says, “OK, listen to me, please. After all your wheedling and begging and whining and complaining, Dad and I have decided the time has come for a puppy. We will go check out a litter of pups tonight and pick out a female. It will be your job to take care of this pup.” What a surprise! How do you take care of her? When your little bundle comes home, she will be scared at first. Everything will be so strange to her. She may have a bad case of the shakes. Gently pat her and whisper in her ear. Keep things quiet. It would not be a good idea to invite all your friends and cousins over that first night! After your pup has stopped shaking, offer her a drink of fresh water in her brand-new water bowl. If she drinks for longer than ten seconds, immediately bring her outside where you want her to do her “job.” You can then start the house-training part. Most puppies are easy to house-train. As soon as you let your pup down on the grass in the backyard, she will probably crouch down with her hind legs and pee. Wait quietly and when she is done, pat her head behind her ears and praise her a lot. Tell her what a good puppy she is. Make your voice sound happy. Pups love to hear your voice be happy, and she will remember. Next time you bring her to that place, she will pee again. The same rule applies when she eats her puppy food. Within ten minutes, bring her outside; and she should do a poop for you. Praise her like anything. Again, make your voice sound happy. When it’s time for bed, be kind, but firm. Put a large fluffy towel in the crate with her so she can snuggle. Remember, she has always had her brothers and sisters to snuggle with. Put a ticking alarm clock under the towel. It will sound like her siblings’ heartbeats. Have some music softly playing to help calm her down. After you have done what you can, kindly say goodnight, shut off the light, and go to bed. If she starts to whine, put your pillow over your ears. The most important thing is to be consistent when you are teaching your puppy. If you catch her chewing your favourite slippers, tell her “NO” in your most stern voice and put the slippers out of sight. The next day you may catch her chewing your pesky sister’s slippers. Resist the temptation to let her eat them and be firm with her exactly as the day before. Put the slippers out of sight so your puppy (and your pesky sister) cannot see or reach them! Before you know it your pup will be twelve weeks old and ready for her second shot. Don’t worry, she’ll be fine. Remember, she already had a shot when she still lived with her mom. After the visit to the vet your pup may need some extra sleep. This will give you time to relax for awhile, too. She sure keeps you busy, doesn’t she?

When your pup is about five months old, you can start training her with hand signals and treats. A command should be short—usually one word— accompanied by a hand signal. For example, when you say “sit” you need to put your open hand down towards her with your palm forward. The twelve basic commands you can teach your pup are: Come; Sit; Stay; Wait; Down; Stand; Okay; No; Off; Leave it; Drop it; Heel. Get a puppy training book with lots of pictures that show you how to hand signal. You can buy one at your pet store or go to the library. For training purposes, the best treat for your pup is a piece of hotdog wiener. Your mom probably puts leftover ones in the freezer beside the orange juice. Cut the wiener into pieces as big as the nail on your pinky finger and put them in a sandwich bag in your pocket. Feed one treat when your pup obeys; she will love them, and you. Keep up your hard work; and soon she will be a perfect, huggable, kissable pup. Then all your earlier wheedling and whining and complaining pays off. You will have the best pup in the world!

Resources • How to Raise the Perfect Dog: Through Puppyhood and Beyond by Cesar Millan. • Before and After Getting Your Puppy: The Positive Approach to Raising a Happy, Healthy, and Well-Behaved Dog by Dr. Ian Dunbar. • Train Your Dog Like a Pro by Jean Donaldson. • The Ultimate House Training Guide by Mark Edwards. • SitStayFetch by Daniel Stevens. Helpful Site:

May 2011


pet feature

To Ride or Not to Ride T

By Angela Zimmerling

he rocking horse has long been outgrown and summer vacation trail rides just aren’t enough. Your child dreams of winning rosettes in the horse-show ring, galloping along a summer trail or simply spending quiet hours in equine company. They want to learn horsemanship; they want to learn to ride. For parents with little or no equine experience, the notion of finding a suitable facility can initially seem confusing—even daunting. But with a little bit of research and foot-work you’ll find a place that meets your needs. “Due diligence and homework,” Wendy Sewell, Manager of Coaching and Education for British Columbia Horse Council (HCBC) stresses. “Parents should observe some lessons, talk to other parents. Call Horse Council to get more information.” HCBC is a provincial sport organization that covers a variety of equestrian concerns including coaching and competition. “It wears a lot of hats,” Sewell says. She says that parents should look for barns and coaches who have equine industry insurance. Riding coaches and instructors should also have been certified. In Canada riding instructors are commonly EC (Equine Canada) and/ or CHA (Certified Horsemanship Association) certified. Sewell says that when parents hire a certified instructor they can be certain that “the coach has gone through a learning process and can teach to the industry standard.” A certified instructor will also likely have completed some first aid certification and have undergone a criminal record check. She says parents should walk through the facility. The horses should appear clean and healthy. Their coats should be shiny and the animals should seem curious, alert and friendly. Parents of children enrolling in riding programs will usually be asked to sign informed consent forms. Sewell advises parents to look the forms over carefully. “Do not sign a waiver that takes away the right to sue. Legally you can not sign away your child’s rights.” Any form signed should simply be an acknowledgement that “you are aware of the risks.” Young children (under five years of age) should not be in group lessons. Lessons for older children should not contain more than five students. Ultimately, the child should be learning and having fun. Parents need to take their cues from their children. Wanda Robinson, whose daughter Nicole, 15, has been riding for two years, agrees that parents must be aware of their children’s fluctuating interests. “We take it one day at a time.” Robinson says. She says Nicole originally just wanted


to “be around horses. She did some volunteering (at a local stable) and she just fell in love with horses. A lot of kids miss out because of the cost,” she continues. “People need to understand riding doesn’t have to be expensive.” In fact, many people learn that there is a great range in the price of riding lessons. The cost of riding lessons for beginners can range from $25 to around $50 dollars depending on the facility. Some facilities will allow an older child to work in the barn in exchange for lessons. Like Sewell, Robinson says parents need to do their research. “The environment has to feel alright. Talk to other parents, evaluate it all and choose what suits your philosophy.” Tara Lumb, owner/manager of Willow Acres (a South Surrey equestrian centre), says when parents come to her barn she will first talk with the parents to get a feel for what the parents and child are looking for. “Are they looking for a trainer who is soft and encouraging, do they want to show? I need to know how I can best match them.” She says parents should ask questions when they are looking for an equestrian facility and a coach for their child. “Parents should think about it first. Ask questions.” Lumb adds that parents do need to understand the commitment required for equestrian sports. “Rushing in and out [of the barn] is not teaching the child to care for the animal. Parents have to let the child spend time with the animal.” Once children have learned to safely handle a horse, she allows them to spend a lot of time brushing and bonding with their lesson mount. Lumb also stresses that a barn should feel safe and, like Sewell, recommends that coaches are certified. She says that equipment for the new equestrian need not be expensive. Rubber boots with a one-inch heel and comfortable pants (no sweat-pants) are sufficient for beginning riders. A properly fitting riding helmet is mandatory. “You don’t have to spend a fortune, because you don’t know if they’re going to want to continue and they’re still growing.” she says. “It is rewarding watching kids with the horses and the instructors—seeing the confidence progression from week to week. We have kids with learning disabilities, kids who volunteer. There are kids from all walks of life. With horses, there’s no discrimination.” For more information on Horse Council BC, visit For horse leadership programs for girls, check out

help me sara!

Losing the Family Pet By Sara Dimerman


nyone who knows me can attest to my being a cat fanatic. My younger daughter Chloe, and her friends, often play a game where they go around the house in search of cat paraphernalia—not hard to find—and then will share the number count with me. At last count, I believe we were up to over 250 cat-related items. But I would gladly give every piece of cat paraphernalia away in exchange for more time with either of my two live cats. Slinky and Cadbury have been members of our family for fourteen and thirteen years respectively. When Cadbury came to live with us a year later, Slinky welcomed him. They became soul mates. And it was comforting to know that on days that we were all out of the house, they had one another. On days that Talia or Chloe were upset or angry at us, they confided in Slinky. She listened to them patiently, purring against them, loving them, and us, unconditionally. Slinky’s slow decline was barely perceptible. It’s only in retrospect that we think back over the past few months and realize that Cadbury was sometimes alone, looking for extra attention as his partner spent more and more time sleeping and less time frolicking with him. I guess we didn’t notice it so much because sleeping is part of what cats do and somewhere in the back of our minds, we knew that she had become a geriatric cat. However, we weren’t at all ready for her sudden decline over her last couple of weeks—from a cat who seemingly slept contentedly to one who slept because of the lethargy that had overcome her. We certainly weren’t ready to hear that she was in renal failure; that her kidneys were shutting down. And so began what became one of the most painful times in my life—that of watching a beloved pet, a member of our family, withdraw and shrivel in front of our eyes. We felt such a sense of powerlessness to do anything to bring back the vibrancy in her step, the twinkle in her eyes. Anyone who knows and loves animals will understand that even though their beloved four-legged furry family members cannot smile, laugh or cry, there is a definite change of expression when they are sick or sad. One of the hardest jobs we have as parents is talking to our children about death. But when a pet is sick or dying, there’s no avoiding talking about it as we struggle to determine when to play God in putting her out of her supposed misery, at counting the number of bad versus good days, at coming to terms with when our need to have her stay is greater than her desire to leave this earth. The joy of having a pet in one’s life is immeasurable, as is the pain of letting her go. As I prepared for the daunting task of having to break the news to our children, I struggled with figuring out how to talk about such an emotional issue in a rational manner. At first, they did not want to listen, did not want to know, did not want to even talk about it. So, I said very little. I just planted a small seed from which our conversation could grow. The following day, when they asked a few questions, I answered honestly that her condition was irreversible and that I honestly didn’t know how much longer we had with her but that we would

take one day at a time. Unfortunately, we were all quickly forced to confront Slinky’s mortality as her condition became graver each day. I never pushed the children to deal with her eventual demise. I could see that they were dealing with it in their own way. I noticed that they were spending more time with her—stroking and talking to her gently. Chloe eventually talked about her living in our hearts forever and Talia talked about the emptiness that she would forever feel, about the void that would be difficult to fill. We talked about whether or when we should consider another playmate for Cadbury, even talked about perhaps adding a dog to our family. One of the most difficult discussions was about where to euthanize her—at home or at our loving vet’s office and whether she would be cremated or buried and where. We decided against burying her or her ashes in the back yard for, as the girls said, we would never want to sell our house. Talking was difficult but essential. There was no way that my husband and I could make these decisions without their knowledge and input. Booking an appointment to euthanize her was one of the most difficult things we had to do. The night before, we struggled with the knowledge that this was to be Slinky’s last night with us, but we felt confident in our decision as we watched her struggling to even lap the water that she so craved. The first few days after she was buried were difficult to bear, but we gathered strength from one another and took turns at consoling and wiping away each other’s tears. I feel proud of the way in which our family have worked through and experienced this loss together. I am sure that in time, we will come to tell stories of Slinky without tears running down our cheeks, will be able to look at Cadbury without seeing Slinky’s shadow there too. Perhaps we will even be brave enough to bring another pet into our lives and risk falling in love again. Sara Dimerman is a board-certified psychologist and provides counselling to individuals, couples and families. She is the author of two parenting books, Am I A Normal Parent? and Character Is the Key, and is one of North America’s leading parenting experts. Find out more at

We bring FUN science to you!

Hands On and Minds On, Mad Science is the h he Leading Fun Science Provider for Kids. Ask About our Exciting: • Birthday Parties • Events • School Programs • Pre-School Programs m re • Camps • In-Class field trips and more… Looking to spark your Children’s Imagination? ion? Give Mad Science a Call! 604-591-9115 9115 91 15 e-mail: • /vancouver /vanc ver

May 2011



camp guide, part 2: day camps See ad in this issue ARTS, MUSIC & THEATRE Amati String Studio, Sizzlers Fiddle Group Vancouver & Victoria Sizzlers Fiddle Camp is a high energy, fun week of fiddle tunes set to choreography! A unique camp for fiddlers ages 6-13. Go busking with the group at the end of an exciting fiddle week too! Cost: $250 604.762.6284 | Arts Umbrella Vancouver Get inspired this summer! Through hands-on arts programs, children and youth are immersed in creative discovery and fun. Two sessions available: July 4-15 and July 18-29. Registration begins May 3. Cost: Varies according to program. 604.681.5268 | Dance Co. Vancouver Dance Co. offers an inspiring and fun summer dance program for students ages three and up, with weekly classes and dance camps in July and August. Cost: Please see website. 604.736.3394 | Gabriela’s Movement Studio Ltd Richmond Creative movement and art and/or ballet summer day camps for boys and girls, two to nine years old. Groups are small, allowing for more personal attention. Cost: Please see website. 604.272.0607 | Gateway Academy for Performing Arts Richmond In this colourful month-long experience in the development and performance of a large-cast musical, participants learn to sing, dance, act and rehearse. Join in and make theatre part of your summer memories for life. Ages 8 to 13. Cost: $175-$745. 604.247.4975 | Haney Summer Music Camp Maple Ridge Camp instruction focuses on woodwind, brass, and percussion instruments. Campers meet daily to hone their skills and deepen their commitment to music for one week. In addition to the camp, there will be opportunities for students to enjoy a leisurely, holiday type environment. Camp takes place at the Maple Ridge Arts Centre and Theatre and Abbotsford Collegiate Secondary School and will culminate in a concert for the students’ family and friends. Cost: varies. 778.887.7115 | Jump Start Music & Movement Various locations Singing, vocal play, body percussion, instruments and fun musical games to take your musician to the next level. Various six- or eight-week programs offered throughout July and August for newborns and up. Cost: $72 and up.

Pacific Dance Arts Vancouver Adventure Dance Camp, ages 3-5. Explore dance through magical adventures. Create a Ballet Camp, ages 6-8. Explore dance through ballet technique, mime, choreography, and games. Camps run August 2-5. 604.738.8575 |

Burns Bog Conservation Society Delta (Burns Bog) Learn about the role Burns Bog plays in our environment through discovery, exploration, experiments, wilderness survival training and hands-on activities. Cost: $115 per child for one week, $99 for each sibling. 604.572.0373 |

Place des Arts Coquitlam From July 4 to August 5. Weeklong, self-customized, multi-disciplined art camps for 5-12 year olds and 3-hour, weeklong art workshops for 12-14 year olds. Cost: approximately $32.50 per hour-long class. 604.664.1636 |

Byte Camp Metro Vancouver, Victoria, Nanaimo, Kelowna, and more BC’s biggest provider of Creative Technology Camps for kids! Video game design, 3D animation, claymation and more! Over 45 locations around BC. Cost: $235 888.808.2983 |

Stagecraft Theatre School North Shore & Vancouver (opening soon in South Surrey) Performance-oriented camps give students ages 4-14 the opportunity to train in dance, voice, and drama with specialized, highly qualified teachers. Join the fun!! Cost: varies according to age. 604.267.7287 | Evergreen Cultural Centre Coquitlam, Port Moody, Port Coquitlam Kids on Stage is Evergreen’s most popular day camp and returns for three weeks in July filled with backstage wonder and behind-the-scene fun. Ages 7-12. Cost: $195/week. Registration: 604.927.6552 | Admin: 604.927.6550 Summer Improv Camp Vancouver (Granville Island) This two-week camp consists of quick-witted workouts focusing on creativity, openness, humour, valuing the ideas of others, self-confidence, and the art of listening. Each session guides its participants through various theatre games designed to build and refine the skills needed for good improvisation. Registration includes 3 complimentary tickets to Vancouver Theatresports show. Cost: $330 for youth in grades 7 to 12. 604.738.7013 | Vancouver Academy of Dance Richmond Multiple programs for all ages and all levels. Hip hop, jazz, ballet, tap, lyrical, acrobatics, breakdancing, ballroom and more! 604.231.8293 |

EDUCATION BC SPCA Kids Camp Various locations throughout BC During the week, campers are immersed in animalthemed activities and are challenged, in fun and engaging ways, to learn about responsible animal care, animal facts and to develop positive, respectful relationships between people, animals and nature. They leave feeling inspired to be ambassadors for animals in their community. Activities include active field games to quiet hands-on projects and include games, crafts, skits, guest speakers and time with animals. All of the activities have been designed by the BC SPCA to incorporate positive animal welfare themes. 604.681.7271 |

CEFA (Core Education Fine Arts) Junior Kindergarten Various locations Puppet-making, sculpting, cooking, outdoor play and exploration as well as chemistry fun. Various pre-school camps in July and August. Ages 2 to 5. Digital Media Academy UBC Vancouver Your child or teen will love the Digital Media Academy camps at UBC where they can combine summer fun with cool topics such as game design, digital filmmaking, animation, and game modding. There are many options available and kids ages 6 -18 are bound to find their ideal summer camp that will keep them entertained while learning new computer skills. Kids and teens will learn how to make their own film, game, or digital art at summer camp with enthusiastic, energetic staff, while also making new friends with other campers through fun activities. Cost: $795-$1885. 866.656.3342 | Eagle Awareness School Vancouver Explore the forests and learning how to identify birds, edible and medicinal plants, mammals and their tracks, and will learn primitive skills like how to make fire without matches! Cost: 3 days, $135/5 days, $215. FarmWonders Summer Camp Vancouver (UBC Farm) The Centre for Sustainable Food Systems at UBC farm introduces FarmWonders Summer Camp: an innovative, educational and fun summer day camp for children. FarmWonders is a student-run community education initiative committed to promoting environmental awareness through science-based farm learning. Aiming to offer a unique experience that allows children to explore the wonders of science at the farm and discover the mysteries of the food that they eat. 604.827.4048 | Friends Uniting for Nature Society (FUN Camps) Vancouver & Victoria FUN Camps are exciting, hands-on summer day camps for youth (6 -16 years) that focus on sustainable living and leadership! This is where kids turn into eco-superheroes as they learn that saving the world turns out to be a ton of FUN! FUN Camps Vancouver-$175 (earlybird rate), $195 (regular rate). FUN Camps Victoria-$160 (earlybird rate), $175 (regular rate) 778.977.5921 |

GEERing Up! UBC Engineering & Science for Kids Vancouver Our camps offer a dynamic mix of science, engineering and technology demonstrations, hands-on projects, design competitions and labs. We also offer Girls Only! camps and Special Needs Integration Support. Cost of Camp: $180-$220 (bursaries are available) 604.822.2858 | High Touch-Science Made Fun Various locations These camps are totally-hands on, totally age appropriate and include take home experiments and parent information packages. It’s a great opportunity to make new friends, new discoveries and have some FUN! 778.737.5277 | H.R. MacMillan Space Centre Vancouver For children going into grades 1-4. Sessions available in July & August. Cost: $250-$300/week 604.738.7827 x. 249 | Mad Science Discover the draw of Mad Science in the summer at your local recreation centre! Mad Science engages children in scientific explorations that are so much fun children will forget they’re learning! Various camps to choose from like Lights, Chemistry, and Action or Red Hot Robots (Langley). Science Explorer or Codes, Clays & Constellations (Surrey or Abbotsford). 604.591.9115 | Oxford Learning Multiple locations Don’t let your kids lose up to 30% of what they’ve achieved during the year. Sign up for learning programs that will make your kids shine in September. Opus Academy Vancouver Unique and specialized academic summer programs. Programs include the Stanford University’s Education Program for Gifted Youth in English & Math, Opus Speech Arts & Drama Program, Opus Public Speaking and Debate Programs and many more. Make your summer productive! Cost: varies. 604.267.3749 | Pawsitively Pets Kids Camps Pawsitively Pets is a unique camp experience for kids who love animals. We offer programming for kids ages 5 -16, from hands-on animal education to Mini Veterinarian programs for older campers. 604.812.2292 | Schokolade Artisan Chocolate Vancouver Chocolate Boot Camp: Have fun making chocolates with different ingredients using a variety of molds, methods, and skills; create your own showpiece. Three days per course, two hours per day. Cost: $150. 604.253.9411 |

May 2011


camp guide, part 2: day camps Science Alive Burnaby & Surrey Campus (SFU) Science AL!VE invites youth in grade 2 through 7 to attend the exciting science, engineering and technologyfocused summer camps! All programs mix incredible experiments, fun indoor and and outdoor activities, and face time with SFU undergraduate students and researchers. There is an emphasis on exploration of science, engineering and technology through handson activities, labs, games and week long projects. Cost: starts at $130.

camp. See registration form. 604.718.5898 |

SPORTS & ACTIVITIES Burnaby Village Museum & Carousel Burnaby Camps offered throughout the summer are filled with games, crafts and fun activities based on a weekly theme. Of course carousel rides are a daily must! Cost: $150/week 604.297.4565 |

Science World Vancouver This summer campers at Science World will delve into city science or our dinosaur exhibition of some of the most bizarre dinosaurs ever discovered! Cost: Science World Members $280, Non-Members $305 604.443.7443 |

Canlan Sports Burnaby (8 Rinks) Offering a variety of hockey, soccer, multi-sport and ringette summer camps for children of all ages and abilities. Visit the website or call for more details. Cost: starting at $175 per week. 604.291.0626 |

Summer at St George’s Vancouver St. George’s School offers fun and enriching summer camps for children. Choose from sports, robotics, science, computers, acting, fine arts and much more! Cost: $125 to $315 per week. 604.221.3601 |

CircusWest/Cirkids Vancouver Weeklong camps ages 7 and up. Mini-camps ages 5 & 6. Unicycle, juggling, acrobatics, trapeze, mini-tramp & more! Showcase for friends & family at the end of the week. Two locations: CircusWest (2901 E Hastings St) or Bayview Community School (2251 Collingwood St). Cost: $120 (mini-camp) or $300-$315 604.252.3679 |

Sylvan Learning Centre Various locations Offering fun and rewarding activities that will build the skills, habits and attitudes your child needs for a successful school year. Costs depend on program selected. Pre-K to grade 7. 800.338.2283 | UBC Camps Vancouver UBC Camps aim to provide both high performance and recreational programs for all ages and skill levels, from beginner to advanced, from toddlers to teens. Cost: varies. 604.822.6121 | UBC Phenomenal Physics Summer Camps Greater Vancouver The Phenomenal Physics Camps are for kids (Grades 2 - 10) who enjoy building things and learning new cool science stuff! We offer four different weeklong camps that cater to a range of ages and interests. Cost: $200-250. 604.822.3675

Deep Cove Canoe and Kayak Centre Deep Cove, North Vancouver Pee Wee Kayak Camps – Ages 7-9. Kids Kayak Camps – Ages 10-12. Teen Adventure Camps – Ages 13-16. Duke of Edinburgh Adventurous Journey Programs – Ages 14+. All camps run in July and August. For camp dates please visit our website. 604.929.2268 | Dojang Vancouver A combination of physical activity, martial arts exercises and techniques, with exciting and engaging outings and excursions that are physical, cultural and West Coast in nature. Some of the organized activities can include: Chinatown and Dr. Sun Yat Sen Classical Chinese Garden, Anthropology Museum, skimboarding, kayaking, volleyball, soccer, swimming and lots of exciting martial arts combining balance, coordination, strength, fun, courtesy, friendship, and respect. Ages 6 to 14. Cost: $499. 604.603.4388 |

Vancouver Aquarium Vancouver Sea Stars, Sting Rays and Sharks galore! Bring out the budding marine biologist in your child (from grades K-8). AquaCamp runs weekly from July 4 to August 26, 9:30-3:00 each day. Cost: $175-$350/week (20% discount for members). 604.659.3552 |

Escape Adventures North Vancouver A mountain bike and adventure camp company that has camps for kids 2-16. After-school camps, weeklong summer camps and birthday parties. Being outside exploring, escaping, playing and riding allows you to see what the North Shore has to offer! Cost of Camp: $125-$375. 604.307.2453 |

VanDusen Botanical Garden Vancouver VanDusen summer camps promote a love of the natural world and environmental awareness through a fun blend of activities, lessons, gardening, games, crafts and garden exploration. Cost of Camp: Garden Member $175 / Non-Member $200. After June 6: Member $200 / Non-Member $225. *Special price for shorter Aug 2 - 5

Jericho Kids Club Fully licensed & quality care from 7:30am-6pm daily. 2-3 field trips per week including Cliffhanger, Playland, Splashdown, Grouse Mountain and much more! Specialty programming: science, art, circus, sports, magic, carpentry and much, much more! 604.736.4080 |

Jump Gymnastics Vancouver Jump Gym offers half- and full-day summer camps for kids age 3-8. Activities include process driven art, literature circle, special outings and, of course, lots of gym and sports. Flexible weekly or day rates. Cost: $180 for 5 half days or $290 for 5 full days. 604.568.9690 | Kitsilano Yacht Club Kitsilano Family learns to sail as a unit, includes both sailing aboard one large boat with the instructor, and singly or in pairs aboard smaller boats, begins 16th. Options for this program include four evenings or weekend days. This program ends October 13th. See website for details. My Gym Children’s Centre Maple Ridge Half-day full of games, sports, gymnastics, arts and crafts, story time, and much more. My Gym Camp is designed to enhance physical and emotional growth, all while keeping your child’s enjoyment the top priority! Please see website for details. 604.465.1329 | North Shore Equestrian Centre Ltd North Vancouver English Horse Riding day camps (M-Fri) camps: 9am - noon or 1pm - 4pm for a total of 15 hours. Ages 8 and older. Beginner riders through advanced. $385.00 including HST (note: $10.00 discount if registered by June 1st). 604.988.5131 | Pedalheads Bike Camps Lower Mainland From training wheels to trails, Pedalheads has safe, fun and challenging bike camps for children ages 3–12. Cost: $159-$289. 604.874.6464 | Royal Soccer Club Various locations Summer Soccer Day Camp, morning focuses on grassroots soccer and the afternoon focuses on swimming and other activities. Cost: Full day, $169/ week; half day, $95/week. 800.427.0536 | Sasamat Outdoor Centre Belcarra Sasamat Outdoor Centre’s Day Camps introduce children and teens to an exciting range of age-friendly outdoor activities. You can register children 6 to 12 years of age for a one-week session throughout the summer. Children are grouped by age and by gender into groups of 8 children to one leader. Cost: $195/5 days. 604.939.2268 x. 1 | Tom Lee Music-School of Rock Vancouver Rock and Roll Music Camp for teens 9-18 years of age. Do you play an instrument and want to rock out hard with other teens? At this camp, we put you in a real band, with an experienced performance coach. After 5 days of practice, you’ll rock out for your friends and family on either the Tom Lee Music Hall Stage or the Tom Lee City Centre Stage. Free t-shirt and Pizza Party. Cost: $250 per person. 604.688.8929 | 888.886.6533 The Great Escape Langley Morning and afternoon summer day camps. Weekly or daily is available. Book soon, check the website for full information and pricing. Cost: varies. 604.530.1400 |

The Little Gym of Langley Langley Expert instructors fill each three-hour camp day with fitness and fun. Obstacle courses challenge them. Arts and crafts engage them. And group activities, snack time and special events give them time to interact and build their social skills—all in a non-competitive, nurturing environment. $20 for members and $25 for non-members. 604.539.2543 | Vancouver Phoenix Gymnastics Multiple locations Come for an action-packed summer at Phoenix! Full and half-day camps focus on gymnastics skills and activities with creative arts & crafts projects and LOTS of fun in the gym! Cost: $116-$329 per week. 604.737.7693 | Vancouver Police Museum Vancouver Education and public programs (ages seven and up); Mini Police Academy (ages four to seven). See website for details. 604.665.3346 | YMCA Camps of Greater Vancouver Vancouver/Gibsons Designed to provide safe and creative activities for young people to take part in while surrounded by the incredible natural beauty of our rain forests and ocean shoreline. Cost: $172 (no tax). 604.939.9622 |

COMMUNITY & REC. CENTRES Be sure to check out your local community leisure guide for their extensive list of summer camps for all ages. Burnaby Parks, Recreation & Cultural Services 604.570.3800 | City of Richmond Aquatics Coquitlam Community & Recreation Centres 604.927.3000 | Delta | Ladner | Tsawwassen Recreation & Parks 604.946.3293 | False Creek Community Centre 604.257.8195 | Marpole-Oakridge Community Centre 604.257.8180 | North Vancouver Recreation Commission 604.985.7761 | Port Coquitlam Parks & Recreation 604.927.5411 | Richmond Parks & Recreation 604.276.4000 | Sunset Community Centre 604.718.6505 | Surrey Parks & Recreation 604.501.5100 | West Vancouver 604.925.7000 | Vancouver Parks & Recreation 604.257.8400 | West Point Grey Community Centre 604.257.8140 |


May 2011


travel feature

Kid-Friendly on the Sunshine Coast By Cassandra Anderton | Photos by Darren Robinson Photography


ith summer nearly upon us, it’s time to start planning how to keep your children occupied while school is out. While many families plan trips to far away places, we are happy to travel in and around British Columbia with our crew in the summer months, as there is so much to do locally. It is also more economical and environmentally friendly and a great way to put money into Canadian pockets. We’ll be spending some time this year on the Sunshine Coast, an easy 40-minute BC Ferries ride from Horseshoe Bay to the Langdale Terminal near Gibsons. The coast is divided into the Lower Coast from Langdale to Earl’s Cove and the Upper Coast from Saltery Bay to Lund, with connections at Powell River to Texada Island and a ferry that sails several times daily connecting the Upper and Lower Coast. Visitors from Vancouver Island can depart from Comox to Powell River on the Upper Coast. The Sunshine Coast is all very easily accessible and arriving there always involves a scenic journey.

Where to Stay on the Lower Coast Coracle Cove Waterfront Suite: Coracle Cove is the perfect place to re-connect with nature. Located in Sechelt, a short drive from the Langdale Ferry, this oceanfront suite is right on the inlet. Fish right off the dock, explore sandy beaches (they supply a sand castle building kit), and watch the seals swimming, passing boats sail by and hear birds chirping. There’s a king bed and a double sofa bed as well as sleeping cabin for big kids who may be craving some space of their own. A kitchen and BBQ means you can cook your own meals, and there’s free Wi-Fi, three outdoor decks, and an oceanfront hot tub. Summer $229 per night including breakfast ($199 without).

Where to Stay on the Upper Coast Beach Gardens Resort and Marina: This is the perfect spot for water-loving families. Located in Powell River, this resort has an on-site restaurant, gym and indoor pool, as well as a marina to park your boat at if you are lucky enough to have one. Right at the resort, Alpha Dive & Kayak offers charters, scuba courses, equipment rental (bikes too) and information on kayaking and scuba diving. Your family can learn to dive right in the onsite pool. Summer $219 per night for a quad suite.

Play There’s much to do on the Sunshine Coast, so plan on spending more than just a few days for maximum enjoyment. Alpha Adventures is the place for kayak and canoe rentals. They offer kids kayaking camps, family friendly kayaking tours and have specific boats in the fleet designed for children along with kids’ paddles. Locations in Sechelt, Powell River, Pender Harbour and Roberts Creek. On the Lower Coast don’t miss the playground in Shirley Macey Park in Gibsons. The recently completed park project included the construction of a wheelchair-accessible playground and paths, a modest water feature, sandplay area, educational frog habitat, viewing decks, picnic tables and a multisensory native plant garden maze with “please-touch-and-climb” sculpted art. There is child-friendly, interpretive signage throughout, and enough to keep you and your kids happy for hours. In Wilsons Creek, the Chapman Creek Hatchery is worth a visit. Throughout the summer the technicians are available for tours. Watch the salmon smelts


being released and learn about the cycle of the species. Children will gain a whole new understanding of the need for clean water. The Sunshine Coast Botanical Gardens are an exceptional 40 acre property full of mature trees, grassy meadows, ponds and vegetable gardens. Offering tours each Sunday, the gardens are filled with birds from the turkey vulture to the barrel owl, deer, bear, coyotes and snakes. Best to stay on the tour! Malaspina Water Taxi out of Pender Harbour offers a four-hour exploration tour of Jedediah Island Marine Park that is a wonderful way to spend the afternoon. Your family can gather oysters, and pick fruit from the wild apple, pear and cherry trees. Dolphins, eagles and the occasional whale can been seen on the trip. On the Upper Coast, the Willingdon Beach Trail is just north of Powell River, an easy loop trail that follows an old rail bed. The hike is 1.2 km and ideal for hikers and mountain bikers. The interpretive signs guide you through the old growth forests mixed with Douglas Fir, Gran Fir, Red Alder, Western Red Cedar and Broadleaf Maple. Mind the tides as there are some area difficult to pass at high tide. There is also a water park, museum, concession stand and camping at the municipal campsite next to the park. There are many serious golf options if your kids are experienced, but for now our crew is happy to master the mini-golf courses. Putter’s Mini Golf is a great option located in the center of Powell River and provides lots of running water, fountains and a full 18-hole course of mini-golf.

Eat Many restaurants are child-friendly and there’s everything from fast food chains to serious fine dining. In Gibsons, Molly’s Reach is a fun place to stop in as it will provide a good story (the Beachcombers TV serious was filmed here), and they serve a variety of child-friendly dishes. If your kids can usually find something they like in the way of Greek food, Daphne’s Restaurant in Sechelt has indoor and outdoor seating and some tasty souvlaki, and we like the fish and chips at The Laughing Oyster in Powell River.

Resources Coracle Cove Waterfront Suite | Beach Gardens Resort and Marina | Alpha Adventures | Shirley Macey Park | Chamberlin Road, Gibsons Chapman Creek Hatchery | 381 Parkway Drive, Wilson Creek | 604.885.4136 Sunshine Coast Botanical Gardens | Malaspina Water Taxi | Willingdon Beach Trail | 4801 Marine Avenue, Powell River Putter’s Mini Golf | 4800 Marine Ave, Powell River | 604.485.7166 Molly’s Reach | 647 School Road, Gibsons | 604.886.9710 Daphne’s Restaurant | 30 Wharf Avenue, Sechelt | 604.885.2008 Laughing Oyster Restaurant | 10052 Malaspina Rd, Powell River | 604.483.9775

travel feature

Surviving Airport Security with Kids By Claire Newell


ot too long ago the TSA was getting a bad rap for what many are calling its invasive search procedures. We’ve all faced the annoyance of having to shuffle through the line up in our stocking feet, hoping that there isn’t some rogue loose change in our pocket that will set the metal detector off. Getting through security can be pretty stressful at the best of times, but add in a fussy baby and an excited toddler and the whole experience seems pretty daunting. But getting your family screened and through doesn’t have to be a nightmare. Here are some tips to help get your family through as seamlessly as possible. All passengers are subject to pre-board screening—even minors. Infants and very small children need to pass through by being held by a parent. If you are traveling with another adult, decide in advance who will be in charge of folding the stroller, carrying the infant/toddler, taking shoes/jackets, etc. Make one person in charge of electronics and liquids in ziplock bags that must be separated out. If your children are old enough to understand, prepare them at home for what happens at the airport security. Let them know of any rules for security that may apply, such as taking off their shoes or walking through a metal detector. It might be cold outside, but be sure to dress your kids in clothing that’s easy to remove. Layers and layers of sweaters are not a great idea. Everyone should wear socks and slide on shoes. Juggling your carry-on bags while tying your laces and your toddlers is not fun. Yes, you do have to remove your baby’s shoes as well. If this is going to cause a meltdown, it may be best not to even put shoes on them until after you’re through the screening. If you are taking a stroller, you must take your child out before you can pass through. Keep your child in it as long as possible and collapse the stroller last. It might be a good idea not to plan your airport check-in and security around your child’s nap time. If they are asleep in their stroller and have to be pulled out, you could be looking at some serious screaming in an already stressful environment.

Next, I cannot emphasize how important it is to keep yourself organized. Keep all your electronic items—laptop, camera, iPod, cell phone and your kids’ video games—in one bag, so that security doesn’t need to dig into various bags to inspect these items. Inside both carry-on and checked luggage, keep any clothing and baby items organized in clear plastic bags. That way, if your luggage is searched, it’s easier for security personnel to inspect and repack it neatly. For liquids, remember the 3-1-1 Rule. If you are unsure, check the Transportation Security Administration website ( before your trip for details. Those traveling with babies under the age of two years are allowed more than the 3-1-1 rule of baby formula, breast milk, juice or baby food through the security. But just bring what’s necessary. Any thing over the 3-1-1 rule needed for baby must be declared at the security checkpoint and kept separate from toiletries in a zip-top bag. If your child can’t go without milk for long, don’t rely on the airline to carry some. They often don’t, so be sure to bring it along. Keep your eyes open for security line-ups specifically designated for families. The TSA has implemented these in many airports across North America. Often the line ups will be shorter and the personnel will be extra prepared for your troop to get through. Above all, be patient and polite. This is a stressful time for everyone, including security personnel and airline employees. If you follow the rules and keep your family organized, the whole process will be a lot less unpleasant. Founder and president of Travel Best Bets, Claire Newell has appeared on The Today Show, Martha Stewart Living Radio, and CNN Radio and is the official travel consultant for Global TV. She has been a spokesperson for Disney’s www. and is the best selling author of Travel Best Bests–An Insider’s Guide to Taking Your Best Trips, Ever and has just finished her second book. This wife and mother of two has launched two lines of luggage & travel accessories. Visit for more information.

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reading corner

Surviving Motherhood in Stilettos, Local Growers and Holy Pets! Didn’t I Feed You Yesterday? A Mother’s Guide to Sanity in Stilettos

by Laura Bennett In this very funny, highly sarcastic, and eminently witty book, Bennett, a slightly-narcissistic mother of six who admits to a “genetic predisposition to laissezfaire parenting,” gives her often-politically-uncorrect take on motherhood. In the process, she breaks every rule in the Brady Bunch parenting handbook, like giving her kids junk food and admitting to favourites. SRP $29.95.

Up We Grow!/Watch Me Grow!

by Deborah Hodge; photography by Brian Harris In both of these companion books, Hodge and Harris (both local Vancouverites) take young readers on a journey to discover local farmers and their work through the seasons. In Watch Me Grow! the focus shifts to the city, where Hodge and Harris look at how great food can be grown in the unlikeliest places, like front yards, back yards, rooftops, balconies and windowsills. Meet a city chicken, a garden frog, and some rooftop bees along the way! SRP $16.95 each.

Motherhood and Feminism

by Amber E. Kinser As long as there have been mothers, there have been feminists. In this book, Kinser explores how mothers—past and present—have worked against the division of public and private realms in order to win recognition both as individuals and as parts of families and communities. Tracing the path of feminism and motherhood throughout history, Kinser examines how closely related the two have been since the Industrial Revolution. SRP $18.50.


My Cat Isis

by Catherine Austen; illustrated by Virginie Egger The goddess Isis was the revered daughter of the earth and sky. The cat Isis is a family pet who is just as special. Through a series of humorous comparisons between his cat and its goddess namesake, a young boy reveals both similarities and differences between the two worlds. Ages 3 to 7. SRP $18.95.

The 10 Habits of Happy Mothers: Reclaiming Our Passion, Purpose, and Sanity

by Meg Meeker, MD The pressure on mothers today has pushed many to the breaking point. Mothers today are expected to raise superstar kids, look great, make good salaries, volunteer for everything, run errands, keep a perfect house, and be a perfect wife. Single mothers often have even more demands—and less support. Dr. Meeker incorporates clinical data and her own experience raising four children to identify the 10 most positive habits of mothers who are healthy, happy and fulfilled. “Doing less more often” is one such core habit that we heartily agree with! SRP $28.95.

The Good Garden

by Katie Smith Milway; illustrated by Sylvie Daigneault Based on the real story of farm transformation happening around the world, The Good Garden: How One Family Went from Hunger to Having Enough tells the story of one Honduran family’s struggle to grow enough food to meet their needs. María’s family is poor, and her father must leave the farm to find work in the city, but a new teacher shows the family and village how to feed the soil with compost, create terraces to prevent erosion and bypass middlemen to sell her produce directly at market. SRP $19.95.

Two Moms, Two Babies, One Family Local moms Diane Srivastava and Tania Zulkoskey talk about exploding the mother myth, social justice and parenting twins. What’s the lowdown on you? Tania: By trade, I am a social worker working as a counsellor on relationships, LGBTQ, trauma, parenting, stress and fertility issues, with a real passion for social justice. After traveling around the world for a year with my wife, we embarked on our greatest and latest adventure of having children. Although we planned on having two children in two ovens, we never imagined that it would end up being two buns in one oven. Unexpectedly, I had twins. Thank goodness my wife breast-fed too! Diane: Mother of two 22-month-old babies, married to Tania, by profession an ecologist and university professor. [Editor’s note: Diane was named one the top six scientists in Canada by Parliament last summer.] When we discovered that Tania was going to have twins, we decided we needed to both be at home with the babies for a year to give them the individual attention needed for attachment. Plus, I was on an induced lactation program to help breastfeed the twins. In fact, I was planning to have our second child until we discovered Tania was carrying twins. The irony is, had I carried our second child, we would have automatically been entitled to two EI-supported parental leaves even if the children had been born on the same day. Yet because both children came from one pregnancy, we were only entitled to one parental leave between the two of us (that I took, Tania took unpaid leave). We and other twin parents have argued that this is unfair—kids need parental care no matter which womb they came from—and the flagship case for our combined legal fight is currently at the federal level. How did your respective careers come about? Tania: I had always wanted to be a social worker because of my values of social justice, feminism and a belief in humanity. [To me,] social work has the most holistic perspective of the helping professions since it considers both the person and their environment. And having a private practice as a therapist allows me to work independently and flexibly around child care. I divide my work week between my private practice and social work.

Photographed by AG Photography | Gina Spanos |

Diane: The usual way in academia: passion, ambition and hard work. Ecology is the perfect discipline for me, because it fulfils both heart and head. I have always been motivated by the need to conserve species and the environment, but I thrive on the intellectual challenge of untangling how nature works. Like most academics, I spent fifteen years in post secondary education and postdoctoral positions before landing a faculty job, but the journey was as rewarding as the endpoint. >>> May 2011


wcm profile cont’d What are some of your biggest challenges in work? in life?

Diane: This is real challenge at the moment, as forty hours of work time plus forty hours of childcare barely leaves enough time to empty the dishwasher. But my hour-long bike ride home from work is a good time for reflection.

Tania: Often people think the hardest part of hearing people’s struggles, losses and frustrations is just that, but it isn’t. The hardest part is when our justice system fails and seeing slow social change in our society. As a queer mom I both worry and believe things will be better for our kids. As a new Any must-haves? mom, (besides sleep deprivation) I would say breast-feeding was my biggest challenge. Socially and medically, it’s promoted everywhere; the pressure to Tania: I think many, if not all, people can really live without most of the things breast feed is overwhelming. The focus really should be on providing breast we consume, so if I had to really pin-point it, it would be my family. As much milk in any form, from donor milk to pumping so that you aren’t attacking a work as it is having two one-and-a-half-year-olds, I am sure glad I have my wife being my equal beside me, laughing, crying and getting up in the middle of new mom’s self-esteem. Castletop Characters:Layout 1 9/5/07 7:24 PM Page 1 the night. Diane: My work takes me to remote parts of the world – for example, I currently have research projects in Costa Rica, Brazil and Argentina – and three years ago Diane: Eight hours of continuous sleep. Obviously only occasionally realized! we spent a year backpacking around the developing world. But while we have both led adventurous lives to this point, nothing has been more challenging Tell us one or two of the most important life lessons you have learned than twin infants! so far. What would you describe as some of the biggest rewards of your work? family?

Tania: Anything is manageable. I learned this from my mom and it’s probably the most valuable perspective I can have being a mom, a business owner, and a wife.

Tania: Witnessing peoples’ stories is a real honour. Sometimes I work with clients for years and sometimes within short windows of time. Seeing the resiliency in people and compassion in the face of real struggles is an aweinspiring journey. Maintaining healthy relationships, parenting through stress and processing trauma is a lot of work and takes endless energy, but people are resourceful when they have a guiding hand. I am very privileged to work with people in such raw moments.

Diane: “It will get better!”—because it always does. Even when you are trying to change the diaper on one screaming baby while the other is busy throwing up on you, you just have to remember that in 15 minutes they’ll both be giggling again. The other bit of wisdom is that if you and your partner contribute equally to caring for your children, your children will be equally attached to both of you—it’s about time we dispensed with the myth of mother magic—it’s simply about commitment.

Diane: There is nothing like having two twin babies squealing in joy as they hug you! This is the real blessing of having twins. As for work, the rewards are in discovering things that were so far unknown to anyone, in mentoring students, and in forging friendships with colleagues around the world. Plus, being able to decide what you spend every day studying is a pretty big job perk! Do you manage to take time-out for yourself? If so, what does that entail? Tania: A little. I get massages, bike to work sometimes and spend time scrapbooking the baby books.

Anything else you’d like us to know about you? Tania: I love photography and have already managed to take over 12,000 photos of my twins. You know, you gotta keep it equal, so it’s really only 6,000 a piece. Is that normal for a new parent? Diane: Besides family and science, I love carpentry. Sometimes I get to combine these, like building furniture for the kids that I cover in colourful paintings of rainforest animals and bugs.


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Adult Events for the Hip Mom Around Town! Moms Unite Swap Meet South Arm Community Centre May 1, 10am-1pm Gently used household items plus children’s clothes, toys and sports equipment for sale at great prices. 604.718.8060 Momcafé North Shore Mixer Lusso Baby, 1037 Marine Drive, North Vancouver May 5, 5-7pm Join in for an evening of shopping, chocolate and wine to celebrate the launch of Momcafé North Shore. All attendees will receive a discount both at the event and online. Balding for Dollars Ambulatory Building, BC Children’s Hospital May 7, 11am-4pm Join other family members, friends, and staff at BC Children’s Hospital to shave their locks in support of kids with cancer and to enjoy the carnival atmosphere, which includes a gaming room, live band, arts and crafts, a post-shave photo area, as well as delicious goodies for the participants and supporters.

Want WestCoast Families at YOUR event? Call 604.249.2866 or email us at to receive free delivery of WestCoast Families magazines to your family event!

Mama Renew for Working Mothers Pomegranate Community Midwives, East Vancouver May 9, May 30, 7-9:30pm Each group is a community of mothers who not only share in the joys and challenges of motherhood, but also in supporting one another as we seek renewal and balance as women. Explore your core needs and how to nurture all of you. Move beyond the myth that we can “do it all” and cultivate the art of saying Yes and No. Cost is $150. Connecting the Dots The Boathouse Restaurant, Port Moody May 11, 9:15-11:30am Enjoy a light breakfast and steamy latte and on-site childcare provided by Kindercafe while listening to inspiring women as they reflect on their journey that lead them to their success and connecting with other educated and savvy moms in the Tricities. More info, prices and to register please go online. EPIC: The Vancouver Sun Sustainable Living Expo Vancouver Convention Centre West May 13-15, check website for times Western Canada’s largest sustainable lifestyle show and eco-marketplace. Join this annual celebration of planet-friendly living and surround yourself with over 300 green companies, inspiring ideas, exciting entertainment, and smart shopping in one jampacked weekend.

Aladdin Casino Night Fundraiser Executive Plaza Hotel & Conference Centre, Coquitlam May 14, 6pm-midnight Join in the fight against BC child poverty. Enjoy live DJ Babybliss and belly dancing. Dinner will be served as well as plenty of casino tables including blackjack, roulette, and a private poker room! Tickets $100 each and must be bought in advance. Building Value in your Business Network Hub, 422 Richards St May 17, 7-9pm Guest speaker Jacqueline Flett practices in the areas of small business, wills, estate planning and administration, and real estate. Jacqueline is a member of the Wills and Estates and Corporate Law sections of the Canadian Bar Association and has been a guest instructor in the area of small business law at Vancouver Community College. Once Upon a Belly Roundhouse Community Centre May 28, 11am-4pm This event will have everything you need for your growing family under one roof. Benefiting Canuck Place Children’s Hospice, this is the first annual event.

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THE Local

Guide for Active

Urban Families


THE Local Guide for Active

Urban Families September




THE Local Guide for Active Urban Families July/August 2010

Winter Fun for Everyone!

Winter Party Guide,Our Events, and Guide! Holiday Gift Our 2nd AnnualWinners Readers’Choice Here! are and Results

Healthy Living: Taking Time to Breathe

POP! We’re Back to School! Surfing in Tofino Saying “I’m Sorry”

Tapping the Chan Hon Goh of Power Within Goh Ballet Academy

Summer Fun for Everyone! Things to Do Every Day of Summer

Multi-Age Classrooms, Tips for Summer Learning and More! Summer’s Here—But So Are the Kids!

How to Balance Work and Home Over the Summer

E-mail us at to reach over 50,00 families in the Lower Mainland each issue! May 2011


community calendar Fingerling Festival Petro-Canada Ice Centre & Noons Creek Hatchery May 7, 11am-3pm Fun for the whole family at the 20th anniversary Fingerling Festival with performances by Bobs and Lolo, and the release of baby fry salmon into the creek. Nature Tea Party Surrey Nature Centre May 7, drop-in from 10am-1pm Treat your mom to a special celebration for Mother’s Day! Decorate cookies and enjoy a cup of nature-inspired tea in the forest. Take a walk down a nature trail to finish off your morning. Rain or shine. This is a free event for all ages. 604.502.6065 Journey to Lost Lagoon: A Stanley Park Circus Adventure PNE Gardens May 12-15, 12:45 & 7pm CircusWest is pleased to present this original circus production to celebrate Vancouver’s 125th anniversary and the unique artistry of CircusWest youth. Witness as totem poles, park animals and statues come to life. The show includes acrobatics, aerial fabric routines, and human pyramids on unicycles, human contortion and swinging trapeze. (Matinee only on May 15 at 12:45 pm.) Tickets $18 adult; $15 students/seniors; $12 youth (18 and under). 604.252.3679 | Stars on Ice Rogers Arena May 13, 7:30pm This all-star cast of world-renowned figure skaters including Kurt Browning and 2010 Olympic gold medallists Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir offer you a rare opportunity to witness some of the most creative champions performing together in both individual and ensemble routines. Bobs and Lolo Roundhouse Community Arts & Recreation Centre May 14, 11am-noon Dedicated to connecting children of all ages to the natural world through music, movement and make-believe with the creation of shows and products designed to engage, inspire and educate, Bobs & Lolo teach kids to care about themselves, their neighbours and the planet. Admission: $12/person, $40/family. 604.713.1800 | Music for Young Children Open House Place Des Arts May 15, 1:30-4pm Parents interested in learning about the popular Music for Young Children program are invited to an MYC open house. Enthusiastic teacher Cindy Sletmoen will be available to answer questions about this unique Canadian music program designed to foster and nurture musicality among youngsters. Registration for 2011-12 classes will be open this day. 604.664.1636


Insect-O-Rama Green Timbers Park, Surrey May 18, 6-7:30pm Wiggly, slippery, fuzzy or shiny—how do insects look and feel to you? Learn about the little creatures that call Green Timbers Park home and see some amazing insects up close. Take home a fun “bug” craft too! Registration required. Ages 5-12.

Gilmore Country Carnival Gilmore Community School, Burnaby May 27, 4-9pm Put on your cowboy boots, round up your family & friends and come down for an evening of fun for all ages! Enjoy a BBQ, dunk tank, bouncy castle, 22-foot slide, carnival rides, great raffle prizes, pony rides, air brush tattoos, face painting and more! Free admission. 604.790.0301

Hyack Festival City of New Westminster May 21-29 Celebrate the history and tradition of the City of New Westminster, marked by fireworks and events around the city including demonstrations, entertainment, sports, music and fun for all ages and the entire family. Over 60 events taking place over nine days.

The Great Pedalheads Treasure Hunt Coquitlam, TBA, May 28, 10am-1pm Jericho Beach Park, May 29, 10am-1pm This is a free family event with lots of riding, activities and prizes for all ages. The hunt will take approximately one hour, so bring your bikes and your helmet (trikes, training wheels and run bikes welcome, too.) Give them a call to sign up! 604.874.6464 |

Discover Burns Bog Burns Bog, Delta May 21, 10am-noon Want to explore a globally unique ecosystem? Discover how the plants and animals have adapted to these specific conditions and why this makes Burns Bog so important to the environment. 604.572.0373 |

14th Annual European Festival 2011 Scandinavian Community Centre May 28 & 29, 10am Explore 32 European countries in oone day! Gates open 10am, with cultural displays, marketplace and children’s tent until 6pm. Stage entertainment and food booths until 8pm. For the adults, there will be a beer garden and dance 9pm on the Friday. 604.536.3394 |

Frog Search Campbell Valley Regional Park May 21, 1-4pm Search and discover how to identify different types of frogs and marvel at the process of metamorphosis. Allow an hour to complete your adventure. Wear footwear that can get wet and dirty. This is a free event for ages 3+. Meet at the Visitor Centre, corner of 8th Ave and 204th St. 604.530.4983 Fort Langley National Historic Site Grand Opening Fort Langley National Historic Site May 23, 10am-5pm Come one, come all for the Grand Opening! Over the past year, Fort Langley has been undergoing a major facelift. With new exhibits and more to do, they can’t wait to show you what they’ve been working on. Bring the family as they unveil the new “Faces of the Fort Exhibit.” Regular admission applies. 604.513.4777 Centennial Celebration Sir William Van Horne Elementary School May 26, 4-9pm Sir William Van Horne Elementary School is calling all alumni, former staff, administrators, and parents to attend their open house. Please register online. 7th Annual Surrey Children’s Festival Surrey Arts Centre & Bear Creek Park May 26-28, 9am Children will have an incredibly rich arts experience as they take part in the many hands-on activities led by professional artists. The 2011 festival brings work from Scotland, Africa, Belgium, Alberta and BC. These high calibre performances for young audiences are sure to create inspiration and excitement. 604.501.5598 |

Science Fair Fun Run The Athletes Village Plaza May 29, 9am The 12th Annual PMC-Sierra Science Fair Fun Run is the largest timed 5K fun run in the province, and is a major event in Vancouver. All participants will receive a technical running shirt and free admission to Science World on race day! Register online. 604.602.5262 | The Academy of International Dance Arts Spring Performance Norman Rothstein Theatre May 30, 7 pm A diverse performance including classical ballet, international dance genres, and music. 604.327.9313 Vancouver International Children’s Festival Granville Island May 30-June 5 Granville Island comes alive with theatre, music, dance, puppetry and more for families and kids of all ages. Don’t miss out on the cultural kids’ event of the year! All tickets are $22 with a few exceptions (check online).

Want WestCoast Families at YOUR event? Call 604.249.2866 or email to receive free delivery of our magazines to your family event!

Where to pick up your copy of

Vancouver East Eastside Family Place Vancouver Public Library—Mount Pleasant Branch Dream Designs Pagasa Children’s Wear Westcoast Chamber Music Sunset Community Centre Vancouver West Bean Around the World Gatehouse Montessori Little Treasures Children’s Boutique Vancouver Breastfeeding Centre B Cozy Blanket Vancouver Downtown Vancouver Public Library—Joe Fortes Branch Robson Public Market Party Bazaar Tiggy Winkles Vie Maternity Boutiques Canadian Geological Centre Vancouver Police Museum West End Community Centre North Shore Collingwood School North Shore Family Services Ron Andrews Recreation Centre North Vancouver Public Library—Parkgate Branch Karen Magnussen Ice Rink ICBC Belly Bonding Richmond Richmond Ice Centre RDC Skate Park Thompson Community Centre Sylvan Learning Centre Academy of Learning Cambie Community Centre Gateway Theatre Coquitlam/ Poco/ Port Moody Moody Park Arena Cameron Recreation Centre Jelly Beans Kids Consignment Bippity Boppity Boo Christie’s Cottage Siblings Children’s Boutique Gymboree Sugar & Spice YMCA Port Moody Surrey/ Delta Bear Creek Park Train Cloverdale Medical Building Ocean Park Library JB Kids Guilford Recreation Centre Ladner Pioneer Library Baby Cheeks

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YMCA Creakmidspdisscover life lessons in Whe the middle of sailing lessons! Call now to register 604.939.9622 Financial assistance available

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Profile for WestCoast Families magazine

WestCoast Families May 2011  

WestCoast Families May 2011

WestCoast Families May 2011  

WestCoast Families May 2011