Sunday, May 27, 2012

Two Years In and Still Blogging!

Yes, it's hard to believe, but Friday was our 2 year anniversary of the day we landed here.

To celebrate the fact Rob and I went out for dinner...And where did we go, yes Wharf Wraps of course for fish and chips. We hadn't been there in a while and it didn't disappoint.

On Wednesday of last week Rob took one of his exams. This one was to get him certifed as a qualified oil burner mechanic in the Province of NS. Not sure how long he has to wait for the results, but knowing the pace of things round here, we won't hear for a while. After all that studying, he will be back to the books again now for another gas exam.

The Sun was shining again today and I was out pretty much all of the day doing this years' Trash the Dress shoot with several of my fellow photographers. We had some new models and it was definitely a challenge with the harsh lighting and locations; but fun none the less. I am pretty shattered now and I think I caught the sun a little. I hear the temperatures in the UK are pretty toasty too.

There was also some troubling news brewing a week or so ago that I have not yet mentioned regarding the lighthouses of the Atlantic Provinces. The government deem many of them to redundant and want to demolish them and replace them with mast lights. As much as I do agree that some of them are disused and no longer required, amongst the many, this tally includes Peggy's Cove and the Historic Sambro Island lighthouses. Tell me are the government completely insane?! Peggy's Cove is a huge tourist attraction, people come from far and wide to visit the old girl. The cuisers are bused their by the 100's when in dock.

The deadline for petitions to be handed in to Ottawa is May 29, and that's only the half of it. Petitions raised by community groups who are willing to take on  the responsibility for these lights have to prove they have the funds to viably maintain them. Another thought is that Parks Canada may take on some, but this would mean charges put in place to visit them and nobody wants this. I guess we will have to wait and see what happens, but if you are a fan of lighthouses (as I am) then don't leave it too long before you visit, as you may just find them gone!

Left: Ellen, Right: Jessica


Sophie and Ellen in an old wreck of a boat

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Gorgeous Weather

Yes the weather has to be the topic of the day, I had Friday off and I couldn't have picked a better day and the weather has continued throughout this bank holiday weekend.

Friday night Sarah from work came round and we drank quite a few beers, ate pizza and I introduced to her a Brit flick, which was slightly unfoturnate as there was so much slang and London speak in it she had a hard time keeping track of the

Saturday I spent mostly sunning in the garden, and tidying up out there. I was quite clearly saving my energy for today, as Rob and I went on another one of those long drives (that he loves...NOT).

I wanted to poke around a little more in some of the areas along the South Shore that had, so far, eluded us. Found some lovely spots between Liverpool and Shelburne, A couple of Mills, some fishing boats, a lighthouse (of course) and finally we ended up driving round a Cape Sable Island, a thriving fishing community for sure, I saw more people there that I have done anywhere else I think. The beaches there are pretty amazing and completely empty which was utterly baffling to me...In fact every beach we stopped at today, only had a handful of people on them. As we were leaving the island, traffic was momentarily stopped for a duck crossing the road with it's chicks...So adorable!

We then drove back to Shelburne for dinner and then home, incidentally I drove all the way back! My proud purchase today was a lobster trap from an old lady in a cove that I am sure hardly anyone has ever been to. There was a shed, lots of brick-a-brac outside and money in a jar, if you want it, you take it, and pay what you think. (Common practice around these parts). Rob wasn't sure the trap was for sale but I was, and I wasn't leaving without it...I felt obliged to knock on the door of what looked like an empty shack, no one came out for ages, and then she appeared a vision in a red dressing gown. She was thrilled to see someone I think and even more thrilled we paid for the trap. Why do I want a loster trap I hear you cry? For the garden of course :o)

One more day off tomorrow and I shall be making the most of doing nothing and getting some more sun on my skin! Here are a couple of photos from today, more to follow.

Boats with island backdrop, Port Medway

Hunt's Point on the way home

Shopping 'Scotian Style' Labster Trap for sale from the red
hut in the background

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Open House

I always seem to start of the same way, but it has been another busy work week for me. This week was the culmination of weeks of work all coming together for the end result. Myself and Sarah (My Newfie Best Bud) were tasked with creating a display in our showroom to announce the fact that our branch is launching into more diverse colour printing. We have new equipment on the way which means we will be able to branch into all kinds of areas and print on a wide variety of different substrates.

When we were initially given the mission, we had no brief, except we had a corner to fill. I am proud to say I came up with pretty much the whole concept. I had plinths made, created the banner, and the whole theme centred around the wavy line graphic I found online. I created marketing strap lines and donated my images to hang on different samples in the rack. For every idea I came up with Sarah printed the designs. At first we didn't have a deadline, but then an Open House was arranged for May 10, so we had to step it up a gear. Finally everything fell into place and we finished early Thursday Morning. Let me just say installing the waves on the wall, was tough and took 3 of us. The material is a product called Phototex, thankfully it is forgiving, you peel and stick it, but if you mess up you can pull it off and start again. Best of all it never marks the wall...Definitely my favourite product.

Now you may look at this and and think what was all the fuss about, but logistically it was a nightmare with so many samples to incorporate and get hold of.

The turn out for the event was good, we had a BBQ and the rain held off, people seemed impressed and curious with regards our colourful corner. Our regional boss was in town and he loved it, I chatted with him and he was really impressed and cannot wait to see what results we will yield from the new equipment and marketing. I have never really had a conversation with him before, but he always knows my name and asked me how I was getting along in Dartmouth and if I liked it, I told I did and he said he was pleased as he likes to utilise his best people in the right areas?! Which was nice!

The display includes, plaque mounting, canvas wraps, floor graphics, and samples of vinyls, papers, and mounted boards in the rack in the wall, the map is to illustrate the use of Tyvek which is waterproof and we also have a lawn sign on display made from Coroplast and the sandwich board sign.

A slightly wider view here shows the footprint floor graphics a little better. They say 'step into colour this way' and the strap line on the plinth says 'stay one step ahead in marketing with custom floor graphics'

Okay, enough of the showroom. Rob and I took a trip out to the shops today (Saturday). Something we hardly ever do these days as we never have any money to spend, but I felt the urge to spruce up the ambiance in the back yard a bit, so we got some solar LED fairy lights, I am obviously easily pleased as I couldn't wait for it to get dark to see what they would look like and they look so pretty! We also picked up some more solar lights, the little lantern type to put in the ground and I have to say for a few dollars they make all the difference.

Now I have an observation which I have been meaning to mention for the longest time. Nova Scotia is known for being foggy, it has a lot of foggy days per year and yet cars over here are not fitted with fog lights....Go figure?! How can this be. I know the cars (the builds) are different, but honestly, no fog lights?! The roads here also do not have cats eyes. If you say this to people they have no clue what you are talking about. I think the reason they don't is because of the snow in winter and the ploughs on the roads, I don't think they would survive practically, but I have to say driving at night here is a challenge as the lights (what there are of them) are awfully dim and when it rains it's almost impossible to see the road markings.

Talking telly again now and The Voice (US version) finished this week over here, once again I think the wrong person won, even though he was good I was routing for the only girl left in the final. All my shows are coming to an end in the next couple of weeks, a sure sign that Summer is on the way! I am looking forward to a new series of US and UK Big Brother which should keep me going until all the new stuff starts again in the Autumn.

The weather is looking really nice for Sunday, hence I am updating the blog early. Rob and I hope to get out somewhere tomorrow and next weekend is a Bank Holiday and I have taken an extra day off so will enjoy a 4 day weekend.
Until the next update I will leave you with images of some of the abandoned houses we found on our road trip a couple of weekends ago.

A Postcard from Abandoned Nova Scotia
House on the Hill

I simply call this one 'Creep' Definitely one of the more
spooky ones!
This one is actually for sale!!

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Beyond Tired!

Wow, what a week! That trip the girls and I did last Sunday really threw my whole week for a loop. I was tired when getting back, but yet I still stayed up to edit one image and fill in the blog, Monday I was in a trance, I couldn't sleep properly for the rest of the week and to top it all we had our inventory to do on Friday night, and I ended up doing a 14 hour day, my eyes were pretty red and sore by the end of it. Thankfully Saturday I slept like I was in a coma and didn't wake up till around lunchtime...Nothing new there really! Even without the inventory my work week has been frantically busy. There are quite a few changes going on right now and I seem to be a key part of them. Without going into details, it essentially means that I have been taking on other roles as well as my own to help get a new part of the business underway.

The weather has been pretty nice on and off all this week, the best day of course being Friday when I was stuck inside for hours and hours. I had a local framing company enquire about my photography this week, they have a client (a hotel I believe) who is interested in displaying local images. I gave the chap a price on licencing the images, and although he couldn't promise anything he said he would pass my info and flickr page link onto his client and see if they were interested. I won't hold my breath, but let's just say if they did come back to me for some, then I would make a decent amount of cash from each one. On the Getty front, no sales yet, but I remain hopeful. I have in total 87 images available on there for licencing now.

Talking telly again for a moment, since living here I can't say advertisements...Of which there are far too many, have every really caught my imagination....Until now. I absolutely love the new ads for Rona, they really make me chuckle. I have posted them here for you to take a look at. It's my kinda DIY!

Hamish has been playing up a bit this week, I think he has Spring Fever, he is itching to get outside every day now, he loves going out for his constitution walkies and grass eating sessions!!

Talking of grass, it's green now and growing like crazy, it got it's first cut of the year on Saturday and remember my little flower bed I planted last year, well everything has shot up and filled out, I had my doubts with the Winter being so hard here but everything's blooming. My lupins are almost ready to flower...I think they are a bit early, so they must be loving the soil and the weather.

I will post some photos from last weekend in the next update. Didn't want to bog this entry down as I have already posted the ads.


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