Archive for the ‘People’ Category
I’m ready for Christmas and so is my car.
My tree is dressed in the most stylish shoes.
And I’m ready to snuggle up by the fireplace and wait for Santa.
Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas from the west coast of Canada!!
I would like to introduce Joei Carlton, an amazing woman I met through the BC Association of Travel Writers. I know you will find what she has to say fascinating.
1.This blog is about following your dreams. Can you tell us about a dream or two you had as a young girl. Has this dream(s) come true for you?
I have never been a believer in “The Bucket List.” As soon as I wanted something I would work towards that goal. As a child I dreamed of running away to exotic lands. When I finished high school and worked to earn money I left home. At 18 the only two places my parents allowed me to move to were either Florida (where I had an aunt and uncle) or California (where my sister Mona – five years older than I lived). I moved to California. Can you imagine living in Hollywood during the 60’s. What fun.
Another dream was working in law enforcement. I spent 3 years working as a private investigator in various jobs from undercover work, store detective, divorce or child custody cases, and then Wackenhut where I was put on the airlines as an undercover agent. From 1968 to 1970 I was on the LA Police Department.
When I returned to Canada I went from office worker to sales (my favorite) to owning my own very successful Wool and Needlecraft shop. I definitely lived my own dream. I loved being in charge of my own life.
2. What were some of your favourite books as a child?
I came by my love of adventure in the all the books I read as a child. I read every Nancy Drew Mystery and Hardy Boys book I could get my hands on. My love of horror books came from reading every horror comic book even if they gave me the most horrible nightmares.
3. When did you start writing and what motivated you to write.
My writing career was born out of the saddest part of my life. It had been my husband dream to go traveling. Willing to follow the love of my life anywhere he chose, we sold our home, sold my business while Paul quit his job and embarked on a life of adventure. We spent 2-1/2 years in a motorhome traveling through Great Britain, most of Europe, parts of northern Africa and continuing our adventure in the U.S and Canada. On the 26th of June, 1992 Paul had a heart attack in a German campground and died before ever leaving the campground. I was devastated but decided almost immediately to visit all the places we had planned together.
The year after he died I spent my summer working on 3 archaeological digs in England and a year later I spent 5 months overseas – a month in England selling my motorhome, 3 months in turkey traveling from Side in the south to Istanbul in the north and inland as far as Cappadoccia…..loving every minute of it.
When I returned home it was to a pile of mail – and on top was a magazine called Modern Maturity – from AARP. The back of the magazine asked “Have you been someplace where the sun is always shining and the phone never rings.” I set up my Smith Corona typewriter and pounded out a 3 page story that I sent off to the magazine. Needless to say I heard nothing back and eventually showed the story to my neighbor. She gushed over it – told me that the local newspaper called The Pelican Press would love it – so I repacked it and sent it. The rest is history. My first story became a 2-page spread with 3 pictures in an award winning newspaper published 2 days before my 51st birthday on February 9, 1995. They even spelled my name right.
4. Your books are hilarious, have you always had such a great sense of humour?
I have to say “yes.” I have learned that “sense of humor” runs in families and almost everyone in my family cracks me up. I have also maintained that you can’t live the way I do – 22 years as a solo RVer and 13 years as a full-time RVer – without seeing the funny side of life.
5. You are a woman of many talents, besides keeping everyone amused with your books, you make exquisite bookmarks, spiders and tree of life pendants. What prompted you to start creating these items?
I feel that my beading is a “guilty” pleasure. My mother spent many hard years of her life working in a factory in Montreal beading hats for pennies. I do it mostly for pleasure and it occupies a different part of my creative brain. I love the feel and the shapes and the various sizes and especially the colors – it satisfies every part of my creative mind. Not a day goes by that I don’t feel grateful that my eyes are in good shape and my hands are very steady.
6. What would you say has been a defining moment in your life?
Interesting question: What is my defining moment? I never thought of any part of my life in defining moments. I try anything that looks interesting and fun. I’m not a daredevil at all so I would immediately dismiss anything where I might get hurt physically or mentally but, as I approach my 70th birthday I’m starting to make different decisions about my travels and my writing and my career…….I’ll announce more when I know more…..but changes are acomin’.
7. You are a woman who travels solo, what advice would you give a woman who is contemplating travelling on her own?
What advice would I give a woman just starting out – your instincts will tell you when things are not right – leave when you don’t feel safe and never drive after dark. Find other travelers like yourself and don’t take yourself too seriously. A lot of fun to be found out here.
8. What are you reading right now?
For reading pleasure purposes I still love mysteries or family sagas or real-life adventure but what I’m reading now involves marketing my new e-books. I spent all summer long converting all but one of my adventure-travel books to e-books. Everyone’s Dream Everyone’s Nightmare is being updated and re-edited and will become a memoir rather than a travel-adventure and will be converted to an e-book in 2014 or 2015. It’s my favorite and I want to keep it going.
9. What advice would you give a young person with their entire life before them?
Don’t concentrate so hard on what’s going on around you that you miss something coming at you out of the corner of your eye. Passions change and always do something that you’re passionate about.
10. Any parting words?
I think I’ve said it all. Thanks for listening.
Sorry, WordPress won’t let me add pictures for some reason. Check out Joei’s website to see what she looks like.
In case you were wondering how Erik did with his Reading for Renn project I posted about earlier this week, here are the results. Pretty impressive!
I am a huge fan of kids in general. I think they are totally amazing and I am constantly inspired by them. Here are some great examples of how young people make a difference.
I recently wrote about eight-year-old Teagan Read who wrote a book called Kya’s Treasure to raise money to help build a well and clean water system in Uganda. She managed to raise over $1700.00 for this project. Way to go Teagan! Here is the article in the local paper: http://www.delta-optimist.com/community/young-author-helps-kids-in-africa-1.672535
Teagan Read presents her donation to Steve and Linda Kovacs. photo by Gord Goble See more at: http://www.delta-optimist.com/community/young-author-helps-kids-in-africa-1.672535#sthash.KLICKQYu.dpuf
I have also blogged about eleven-year- old Erik Weibel from This Kid Reviews Books His book, The Adventures of Tomato and Pea has recently been published. Erik is a superkid as I mentioned in my blog post about him http://darlenefoster.wordpress.com/2013/09/16/introducing-a-superkid/ Recently his friend Renn had to undergo a serious operation and Erik came up with a great idea to raise money to help out Renn and his family. Erik is an avid reader who gets points for reading at his school. So he decided to create a Reading for Renn challenge for the month of October and had people sponser him. His goal was to make 150 points in October. By the end of October, Erik made a whopping 165 points. This young man never ceases to amaze me. Read more about Renn and the Reading for Renn challenge here: http://thiskidreviewsbooks.com/2013/10/07/reading-for-renn/
Picture of Renn from The Brian of a Jedi
In honour of local soldiers who have lost their lives in a war, the Grade 12 students from the local high school, South Delta Senior Secondary, erected 41 crosses in a field at the entrance to our town. It is very moving. A fine tribute by the young people in our community.
You can see why I am so impressed by kids. They are the future and the future will be OK.
May we always remember those who have lost their lives to make this world a better place. Many of them were young people.
I discovered this whimsical mermaid on Gabriola Island. She was welcoming visitors to Starfish Soaps, a place where you can find luxurious soaps or bath products made only of natural products. I bought a lovely bar of lemongrass with activated charcoal and carrot. It smells so good. Soaps come with a starfish motive or even in the shape of a mermaid.
This welcoming mermaid made me think of a blogging friend, Patti, over at A New Day Dawns . She seems to find mermaids everywhere in her community. You might want to visit her site and check them out. Here is s sample.
Photograph by Patti at A New Day Dawns
Patti’s posts are always entertaining. She also shares many photos of birds and other wild life that visit her property. http://pattisjarrett.wordpress.com/
We had a fun Halloween at our office last week. Since we are Employment Counsellors working at an Employment Service Centre, we dressed in various modes of work. Here I am as a precarious pirate along with some of my clever colleagues. For the new immigrants who use our centre, it was their first Hallowen experience and they loved it.
Life can often be serious business, especially when looking for work. It is good to have fun from time to time.
What do you do to lighten things up at work or at home?
I spent a fabulous day with my daughter this Thanksgiving weekend. I caught a float plane from Vancouver and twenty minutes later landed on Gabriola Island. This is a trip that usually takes me over four hours by car and two ferries. My daughter picked me up and took me to visit some of the artists participating in the annual Gabriola Studio Tour. I was happy with the choices as each artist had something unique to show. Here is a sampling.
We stopped in to chat with Dianna Bonder, an award-winning children’s author and illustrator. Her whimsical paintings and myriad of published books were enjoyable to look at. A couple of little people will be getting her books for Christmas.
A visit to Joy Olsen’s studio was another treat. Joy creates fun, nature inspired sculptural ceramics. Another perfect Christmas gift was purchased before we left.
A visit to Ted Johnson’s Delfin Designs studio brought out the child in us. HIs wonderful woodwork and trees with doors in them are delightful.
We visited many other talented artists as well, although it was impossible to visit all 41 studios on the tour. It was so great to spend time with my potter daughter, Marcelle Glock, and her community of artist friends and acquaintances. I was also treated to a wonderful lunch at Mad Rona’s coffee bar. It was hard to choose but eventually I decided on a Kiwi Panini which consisted of Albacore tuna, feta cheese and a roasted garlic/artichoke spread. So yummy!
It was a perfect day. The sun shone, the trees on the island were dressed in glorious fall colours, I met very interesting people and most of all I got to spend time with my sweetie. As I flew back home later that evening, I felt extremely thankful for the day, my family and my life.
I hope you had a thankful weekend as well.
I have blooged about my potter daughter here before:
From the back cover:
A treasure! That is what Kya decides to search for one hot, sunny afternoon. Nobody has ever attempted such an important mission in her small village in Uganda before. Will she find what she is looking for? Come along on Kya’s adventure and help her find her very special treasure!
This book, written by an eight-year-old Canadian girl, is a refreshing story about a young African girl on an extraordinary quest. It highlights the differences between needs and wants by focusing on various objects that different cultures value. Used as a valuable teaching tool or a bedtime story, children of all ages are sure to enjoy this book.
This young woman is an inspiration for anyone, of any age, who has an idea or a dream!
According to an article in the Delta Optimist, Teagan was inspired after seeing a June story in the Optimist about a team of locals heading to Kamuli, Uganda to help build a well and clean water system at the Good Samaritan Community Nursery and Primary School. Since she enjoys drawing, painting and writing, she created her book, titled Kya’s Treasure, to help “the kids in Africa to have clean water.” She decided to write and illustrate this book to raise funds to help build wells in Kamuli, Uganda and in other areas of Africa. – See more at: http://www.delta-optimist.com/girl-creates-book-to-help-kids-in-africa-1.643554#sthash.eJUn5T0M.dpuf
The book has delightful illustrations and a wonderful message about what a treasure means to various individuals, represented by African animals.
Children will love this book, learn about another part of the world and perhaps be inspired to help those less fortunate themselves. Parents and grandparents, aunts and uncles, brothers and sisters, will have fun reading it to the little ones.
Teagan’s mother told me that initially Teagan wanted to go to Africa with the team to help build the well. When she was told she was too young to go along, this enterprising young woman decided to write a book instead ,to help out. The proceeds from the sale of the book will go the team to help build the well in Kamuli, Uganda. I have no doubt Teagan will get to Africa herself one day.
The book is available at
Albany Books, Tsawwassen
Black Bond Books
I wish Teagan much luck with this delightful book. I am sure it is the first of many more to come.
This weekend I attended an art display featuring the work of Lea Price and her students. I have known Lea for over fifteen years and have always been impressed with her dedication to her art. She is seldom without a paint brush in her hand or an easel under her arm. She is another person whom I admire for not only following her dream, but sharing what she has learned with others. Lea has been a huge supporter and encourager of me and my creative efforts over the years.
This is her bio from her website where you can view more of her art http://www.leapriceartist.com/
Lea grew up in the United States, moving from the east coast to the west coast in mid 60’s. As an only child and being raised in an era of “children should be seen and not heard”, crayons, paper and pencils became her silent companions. Encouraged by both parents and teachers at school, she continued on her goal to become a productive, accomplished artist. Art Center College of Art and Design in Los Angeles attracted her based on its fine reputation and she majored in advertising illustration. After completing 3 years of study, Lea earned a Bachelor of Fine Art and headed north to Vancouver, BC, a place which she had visited during a holiday between semesters. Lea began working as a freelance illustrator and photographer mainly with advertising agencies and some notable personal clients including BC Forest Products and the UBC Botanical Gardens.
In the late eighties, Lea had the opportunity to further her studies and undertook three years at the Emily Carr College of Art and Design, completing a Diploma of Fine Art with a concentration in ceramics, three dimensional work and mixed media. It also gave her the confidence to begin to let go of the commercial art field and move more towards fine art, sculpting and painting. Lea also began working and curating in galleries in Vancouver, Delta and White Rock, amercing herself totally in the art world and observing the styles and techniques of other artists.
Today she is painting full time in-between teaching children and adults in both group and private lessons. She also volunteers with the South Delta Artists Guild, helping to strengthen the art community.
A few more pictures from the current exhibition at the Tsawwassen Longhouse Gallery which runs until September 29.
Lea is an avid gardener and an animal lover. Be sure to check out the “Friends” gallery on her website to see her whimsical animal portraits.
Her students are lucky to be able to learn from her and I consider myself fortunate to call this talented woman my friend.