Saturday, 30 June 2012

Kids do you want to be a Farmer for the Day?

The Davison Orchards in Vernon is offering an all day program for kids this summer. The program is designed for kids ages 5 - 8 years old and will run from 8:30 am until 3:30 pm. The cost is $50.00 that includes lunch and snacks. They are taking registrations for July 11th and 25th also August 8th and 22nd to register call 250.549.3266 or email

This sounds like a great time for the kids they get to visit the barns with the animals, tour the apple peeling machines, juicing room, check out the beehives, ride the tractor train through the fields and play at the Crazy Cow Kid's Corrol. With all that in store for them they should be good and tired when they get home, sounds like a full day of fun!

Friday, 29 June 2012


It's Tracy I volunteer with the Seniors Outreach Service Society and they are in desperate need of Coffee Hosts and Hostesses, if you can help them out or know of someone that can help them out, please give them a call at 250.861.6180 
There are other volunteer positions available too, if you don't feel this one would be right for you.  A few hours of your time means so much to a lonely senior.
Below I have posted the days, the times and where the coffee breaks are held. To give an idea of the time commitment you would be looking at. You can pick the place or places you would like to volunteer at. Also you work with a partner. 

Seniors Coffee Breaks
Dilworth Group-Apple Valley Seniors Residence - 2055 Benvoulin Court.
Every Wednesdays 9:30-11:00 am * With a Guest Speaker the last Wednesday of the Month

Capri Group - Capri Mall Food Court
Thursdays - 1:00 - 2:30 pm

Mission Group - A&W in the Mission Park Mall area
Mondays - 10:00am -11: 30am

Rutland Group - Activity Room at Fernbrae Manor, 295 Gerstmar Rd.
The 2nd and 4th Thursdays of the month - 1:30 - 3:30 pm 

Here is a description of what would be required of you.

It is vital that volunteers present themselves with an open, welcoming, warm and friendly attitude and like language towards all who attend Coffee Break Groups, regardless of race, ethnicity, ability, religion or personality. This is an inclusive group, designed to reach out to those who are isolated or lonely.
As a host at Seniors Outreach Coffee Break Host, I understand my duties to be:
1.     Display information and signage in a visible and easily accessible location.
2.     Greet and welcome each individual who comes. Explain that this is a Seniors Outreach “Coffee Break.”
3.     Show newcomers the information binder. Also, give them a Seniors Outreach brochure and offer them an Elderguide booklet $2.00.
4.     Introduce newcomers to at least two to three others. It is the responsibility of the host to see that they are included in conversation or invited to join in games.
5.     After an attendees first Coffee Break, encourage them to come again next week.
6.     Smile!! we and the clients, thank you for your caring!
7.     Submit monthly log sheet to the Manager of Volunteer Programs, stating volunteer hours, activities and possible areas of concerns.

·     Seniors call our office regularly inquiring about social groups and we refer them to Coffee Break Groups. It is important that all Coffee Break Groups can be easily found and accessed.       
·     We strive to provide 2-3 regular co-hosts. Hosts should work together to best utilize their strengths and abilities, dividing tasks and responsibilities.
·     If a host is going to be absent, we do ask that they contact the Seniors Outreach Volunteer Coordinator as soon as possible to ensure that a relief host can attend in their place, but you maybe called upon with short notice. 
·     Length of the relief position will vary with the regular hosts absences.

By following these guidelines and working together, we can make a real difference in the lives of those older persons who are vulnerable and alone in our community. 

 If you are a senior reading this and would like to attend these coffee breaks please call 250.861.6180 before attending for the first time. The more the merrier!!

Thanks for reading this and helping out if you can!
Have a wonderful day,

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Need to Update your home to Sell?

Does your home need updating? One of the quickest ways to update and stage your home for selling is with paint. You can quickly transform your room from dated to update with a can of paint. However, when choosing paint colors try to stick to neutral colors, as they appeal to the widest range of buyers. Neutral doesn't have to be boring!! Neutrals can be anything from tones of  browns to the cooler colors of the modern greys, it just don't have to be beige anymore. Gone are the days of the off-whites.
When going with neutral colors you can add your pop of color with accent items such as pillows, lamps, vases, works of art or rugs.
Have a great day!

Could have been Funny but didn't end up that Way. Update

Here is an update to the post that I blogged about on Saturday. Could have been funny but didn't end up that way. The school provided an update to the situation, Officials at the College du Sacre-Coeur explained that they didn't know the fact that 14 year olds and younger are more vulnerable to hypnosis than other people when they booked an end of the year hypnotism act to entertain the students. However, the girls are all fine with no lasting ill effects.

Special programs for first time BC home buyers.

The real estate prices in BC are high in comparison to much of Canada relative to average income. Which makes it difficult for first time home buyers. Here are some helpful programs that first time home buyers can access to assist them with their first home purchase.

The programs are:
1) Property Transfer Tax Exemption for the first time Home Buyers. This program exempts first time home buyers from paying the BC property transfer tax. Which can save you up to $6,500.00. To receive this exemption you must first qualify
2) RRSP First Time Home Buyers Plan. This program allows first time home buyers to loan themselves previously claimed RRSP contributions tax free to assist in the purchase of a home. You have to qualify to use this plan also.

3) First Time Buyers New Home Bonus. This is a limited time rebate introduced with the enhanced HST rebates for first time home buyers buying New Homes and you only have until Mar. 31 2013 for this one. Again you must qualify to use this.

Saturday, 16 June 2012

Paddling Lake Okanagan

My last post for the day, since the sunny Okanagan has been to sunny for the past couple of weeks I thought I would get some posts in.

I have blogged about Bob Purdy before in Constant paddler's journey nears the end. Well today his is off and paddling again!! He is planning an Okanagan first by stand up paddling the entire 128 kilometre(almost 80 miles) of Lake Okanagan starting at 4am this morning and ending at 10pm tonight. I hope he has the wind at his back. He is doing this to celebrate World Paddle for the Planet Day. World Paddle for the Planet Day is an opportunity to paddle for change.

Bob says:

1. Choose a change you would like to see happen.
2. Paddle for that change on June 16th.
3. Commit to that change until it become reality.
"It could be something as simple as spending the day cleaning up your local beach or as ambitious as joining a movement working to change the we live on the planet."

Get Home Safely

It is the 11th Annual Summer Okanagan Wine Festival and they want you to get home safely and they plan to do so. For the guests attending the events on July 7 & 8 and July 12 & 13th they will be happy to proved you with a complimentary taxi service.

All you have to do is present your ticket stub on the way out from the event for a free taxi ride to your residence or hotel/motel. Great way to keep everyone safe.

For more information check out

Great News

The Canadian Real Estate Association said that the national home price and sales activity this year will be higher than it had been previously forecast, following a strong spring.

They are now forecasting that 475,800 homes will be sold in 2012, up 3.8 per cent from 2011, compared with earlier expectations of a gain of only 0.3 per cent. The average home price to rise by 2.2 per cent compared to earlier thoughts that it would fall 1.1 per cent.

 "National activity over the spring months was stronger than anticipated. This clearly shows how the continuation of low interest rates is keeping home ownership affordable and within reach". CREA president Wayne Moen said.

Great Idea!!

Since we all know it is a shame to waste food, the new Central Okanagan Fruit Tree Project wants to change that. The project would like residents with fruit trees to donate the fruit that they can not use to the charity, rather than having it go to waste by falling to the ground or throwing it out.

There will be a picnic and information session to kick off this initiative tomorrow Sunday June 17th from 12 noon to 2 pm at Sutton Glen Park, the green space at 464 Sutton Cres. in Glenmore

To RSVP for the picnic, register your fruit tree or trees, sign up as a volunteer or for more information, call Laura at 778.214.5664 or email

You can also like them on Facebook at Central Okanagan Fruit Tree Project

Thursday, 14 June 2012

Oatmeal Butterscotch Caramel Cookie

Good Morning,

I made these cookies last week and the cookies were so good, I thought I would share it with you. I made one small change, I used chocolate chips instead of the butterscotch chips it calls for. Only because I love chocolate!

2 sticks (1 cup/16 tablespoons) softened unsalted butter
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup prepared caramel sauce
2 cups all purpose Gold Medal Flour
1 cup quick oats
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 bag butterscotch chips
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. and line a large baking sheet with a silpat liner or parchment paper.
2. In stand or electric mixer, cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy, a good 2-3 minutes. Slowly add in eggs, vanilla and caramel sauce.
3. Place flour, oatmeal, salt and baking soda into a large bowl, mixing to combine. Slowly add to wet ingredients along with butterscotch chips. Mix until just combined then scoop dough onto prepared baking sheet with a medium cookie scoop. Bake for 12-14 minutes, or until edges just start to turn golden brown. Let cool on cookie sheet for 10 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.
Makes 3 dozen cookies

I hope you enjoy these as much as we did. Have a great day!

Tuesday, 5 June 2012


The Okanagan Mainline Real
Estate Board reported 9,651 Active MLS®
Listings with 5,283 of them being located in
the Central Okanagan Zone boundaries available
for sale. The listing inventory is down
only slightly, 1.55%, from 2011 YTD inventory
of 5,302 units. 1,215 Properties were
listed on the MLS® in the month of May
which is on par with 2011’s May listing numbers
of 1,214. Buyers have ample selection
and competitively priced homes are selling
quicker than the average 90 days to sell.
The local real estate market was much
improved during the month of May with a
19.13% sale unit increase over last year.
436 Properties traded hands in May 2012 in
comparison to 366 properties in May of 2011.
Year to date unit sales are up 7.95% with
1,629 units of sales in 2012 in comparison to
1,509 units of sale in 2011. The Average
Residential Sale Price YTD is $461,777 which
is down 1.45% compared to last YTD Average
Sale Price in 2011 of $468,560. Noteworthy
YTD unit sales increases include Duplex sales
up 43.48%, Apartment sales up 17.71%,
Acreage sales up 37.5% and Total Lot sales
up 27.87%.
Real estate market experts remain cautiously
optimistic about the recovery and predict
moderate growth in 2012 and 2013.

How to stage the outside of your Home

Hi, it's Tracy

 I have been so busy helping Steve that I haven't had time to post. But today post is about staging the outside of your home.

You will never get a second chance to make a good first impression, when you are selling your home, it’s critical to make a great first impression. It is as important to stage the outside of your home, as it is to stage the inside. The first thing a buyer sees as they pull up to your home is what is on the outside and that sometimes sets the stage for what they may think they will find on the inside. You don't want to turn a buyer off before they have even come through the front door.
First, make sure your home looks well maintained, perhaps consider doing some little paint touch ups or giving it a fresh coat of paint.  Make any repairs that are necessary, especially the obvious ones.
Go through your yard and clean up any weeds, dead patches on your lawn or dying plants. Consider planting a few new flowers to give it that pop of color. If your doormat is worn out remove it or replace it as you don't want to give the impression that the house is worn out too!

PS. Next week I'm going to share a great cookie recipe I found!

Location, location this home has it in Lower Mission

835 Springside Court 
Great 4 bed, 3 bath family home at the end of a quiet family cul-de-sac just 2 blocks to the beach and half block to school. Desirable Lower Mission location with pool sized yard, plenty of parking and many recent updates. Two fireplaces and jetted tubs in main and ensuite baths. Main floor office or 4th bedroom has new carpeting. Skylight in elegant entrance-way with spiral staircase to second floor bedrooms. Home has approx 600 sq ft unfinished basement and full crawl space for extra space or storage. New front load washer and dryer and new roof done in 2011. Yard has grape vines and Italian plum, peach and apricot trees. Call Steve Higgins at RE/MAX 250-864-7893 for private viewing. Click on link for virtual tour.

Beautiful 460 Cob Lane in Trumpeter Estates

Brand new quality home with incredible unobstructed Lake and City views in Trumpeter Estates for $799,000.00. 2 bedrooms and den on the main with 2 large and bright bedrooms down. Very open design upstairs and down with 11' and 10' ceilings, large covered decks, hardwood throughout the main and 780 sq ft over-sized triple garage with full bonus room under. Views from every level and great pool sized yard to complete this package. Call Steve Higgins at RE/MAX 250-864-7893. Click on link for virtual tour.

Beautiful Lake Country Mobile Home

You can find this home at 180-720 Commonwealth Road.
This home is in immaculate condition. ALL NEW appliances including ceramic top convection stove with built in microwave oven & fridge. Laundry rm with new front load washer & dryer. Huge kitchen with tons of cupboards and counter space. Dining area with built in buffet. Large Master bdrm & en-suite with new glass tile shower & good sized closet. 2nd bath is totally updated and has a nice soaker tub. 2nd bedroom has a separate entrance. Spacious Living room and bonus family room with French doors leading to large covered deck. Family room and Office can be used as extra bedrooms. New roof on addition as well as storage shed. Covered carport along with tons of additional parking. Maintenance free yard. Quiet 55+ adult street across from Holiday park with all the amenities. Great for seniors looking for nice sized home in great shape. Boating and golfing nearby. Just move in and enjoy your new home! Call Steve Higgins with RE/MAX at 250-864-7893 for your private showing. Click on link for virtual tour.

Saturday, 2 June 2012

The Wine Tour has ended but.....

there is so much more, beyond the grapes to see and do here. Kelowna is just minutes to lakeside resorts. Boating, water sports, sandy beaches to play volley ball or just relax, artisan restaurants, art and cultural attractions and great shopping. There are 18 quality golf courses in and around Kelowna. Also heritage driving tours and self guided walking tours the list is endless. So come to Kelowna for a visit and enjoy all it has to offer, you may never want to leave!

Westside Wine Trail part 3

Today we finish our tour of the wineries that are in and around Kelowna. Our last 2 wineries are Mission Hill Family Estate and Kalala Organic Estate Winery.

Mission Hill Family Estate is a must see, it is one of North America's landmark wineries. Wine country's masterpiece! The winery is renowned for it's elegant architecture and dazzling hilltop views. They won winery of the year and Canadian wine producer of the year in 2011. Come and experience an evening performance under the open sky at the Mission Hill amphitheater, it is unforgettable. The 2012 concert season begins Sunday, June 24 with Chris Botti.

Kalala Organic Estate Winery is a small family owned winery with big awards. Kalala is the Okanagan's newest organic winery. The hand-picked grapes and handcrafted wines have taken Kalala very quickly into the international winner's circle. Their first ever vintage of Chardonnay icewine was awarded gold at the prestigious 2010 Chardonnay du Monde competition in France. How sweet is that! Kalala was named after the owner's hometown which means "miracle place."

Friday, 1 June 2012

Westside Wine Trail part 2

Today we are off to the Little Straw Vineyards and Quail's Gate Winery.

Little Straw Vineyards is renowned for it's Pinot Noir and is Canada's only producer of Auxerrois Icewine. This winery has three generation of grape expertise as the Slamka family have been growing grapes since 1969. After a tasting, savor a tapas and a glass of wine in the lounge.

Quail's Gate Winery is my favorite winery. The views from the patio are spectacular they overlook the vineyards and Lake Okanagan. The Old Vines Restaurant is a culinary gem that uses fresh local ingredients paired with the fruit forward wines of Quail's Gate. Don't miss this winery!

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