Be The Best.

Lions, Eskimos and Fathers…V2

I wrote a post in June 2010 after Max took me to the opening of Empire Field for a BC Lions football game vs the Edmonton EskimosHere’s a link to that story.

Fast forward 16 months and we did it again.

Not Empire, but we went to the opening of the new BC Place on Friday with 50,000 of our closest friends and saw those same BC Lions beat the Eskimos in a great match at a fantastic new facility.

New building aside, the best aspect of the evening was another experience shared and added to the memory banks for life.

Those are gold and worth every cent of admission…and then some.  (just don’t tell the Lions that…I don’t want them to raise their ticket prices)

Be The Best.

An intro to two.

I’m going to intro you to a couple of people that I don’t know.

But..with the world of social media, the web CAN be an amazing place to connect on the journey of the new normal.

The first is Steve Ewen.

I’ve never met him.

He’s a reporter with the Vancouver Province and he’s battling cancer.  It’s a tough battle.  He’s called his blog, ‘I’m sad and mad about getting cancer’.  Actually no…he hasn’t.  His blog is called, Crush the Tumour with Humour.

It’s some amazing stories of someone going through a very tough fight but remaining positive and using humour to negotiate the new normal he and his wife find themselves living.  If I can figure it out, I’ll add it to my ‘links’ section, but here’s a quick direct link if you want to check it out.  Here’s an excerpt from today:

The bad news is that the new stitches in my back has led to our surgeon, Dr. Robert Lee, limiting my arm movements for the next two weeks. The really bad news, at least for the people at G.F. Strong and the general public around King Ed and Laurel in Vancouver, is that they’ve given me a power wheelchair.
Oh. Mercy. Think of the havoc I can cause with a motor and wheels?

Keep rockin it Steve!

The second link is from Gillian Berg, the Mission mom who lost her husband and father of their four children at Christmas.  Her writing is deep, spiritual and an amazing work of strength and vulnerability rolled into one.  An excerpt from her latest:

Last night, as my daughter asked for help, begged for prayers that would take her fear away, the fear that something else might happen, the fear that she is still in danger, I realized again that like the work needed to heal the physical wounds, there was going to be gruelling work needed to heal the emotional ones.

We, each one of us, will have to choose to stand slowly, painfully upon the limbs of our broken dreams; to endure the attacks of relentless discouragement of working towards something new; to fight for something better, something healthier.

To Steve and Gillian I would say, we all haven’t chosen our situations.  It happened.  Life happens. There is no big answer to the ‘why’ question….at least not one that may be evident in this lifetime.  We”ll simply stand with you on your journey of the new normal as so many have and are standing with us.  This is a link to the first time the term ‘the new normal’ entered our lexicon.  It’s been a fixture ever since.

Be The Best.

Yogurt and Toast.

All day long the texts, emails and comments kept rolling in.

We appreciate everything and all of those thoughts and prayers!

The Brookswood gang dropped by in the late afternoon and we had a very unique opportunity to toast Chris.

As I’ve mentioned before, Chris had the ability to eat yogurt without a spoon.  He would sort of squish the bottom of the yogurt cup and slurp and drink the yogurt, usually in one ‘fluid’ motion.

We know there are young readers of this blog and as parents we’re not endorsing this form of yogurt consumption!  We were just happy Chris and Max would pound back yogurt instead of cake.

In this picture you can see the toast just getting underway.  Including yours truly taking the picture, that was an even dozen toasting Chris with a yogurt salute and down the hatch it went.

Ingrid was left wondering how it could be done as she ended up with yogurt in a few places on her face.  I know Chris had a laugh at (or with) all of us!

What an amazing day it was.

I’ve got a few more stories to tell you so tune in tomorrow!

We ended the day knowing that Chris would be very, very happy…and we were too.  As tough as the day was, it was really incredible.

Who knew yogurt was made for toasting?

Ingrid, Cooper, Marshall, Cam, Lucas, Beau, Alan (front), Dylan, Jesse, Max, Devon
Be The Best.

Summer Blogs

A little piece of heaven in Nanoose Bay on Vancouver Island (Aug 2010)

As we head into the last few weeks of August you get that sense of changing seasons.

Whether it’s the CHRISTMAS DISPLAYS AT COSTCO, back-to-school stuff everywhere, or those amazing August evenings that magically cool to just the right outside temperature at about 9pm when the sun sets and gets ready for the next show just a few hours away…you get the feeling that change is in the air!

As I wrote yesterday, I like to take some time to look forward, but also like to reflect on where we’ve been.

On occasion I go through some old blog posts.  It’s an amazing way to see the journey and progress that’s been made.  The days and weeks have ups and downs, but I think if we see things over time the general flow of the chart is in a slow but progressive move in a positive direction!

Check these few posts from June:

Empowered gov’t workers help us on our journey.

His Band and Wife.

Roy’s in San Diego.


All pieces of the puzzle.

All steps on the journey.

Thanks for continuing to share the voyage with us.

Be The Best.

The One Minute Zoo

It’s been a long, sometimes tough (dare I say HOT (I’m not complaining!)) week!

I found these clips from the New Normal San Diego Adventure Weekend a couple of months back with Steve and Meggan and thought it was time for a lighter view of the world tonight.

I am pleased to release, San Diego Zoo in 1 Minute.  A gripping documentary look at 5 tourists interaction with animals (and each other) at this world renowned facility.

With tongue firmly planted in cheek, I give you The One Minute Zoo.

Be The Best.

Hit it hard and coast.

I mentioned that I would bring forward a few life lessons that we had developed as a family over the years.

When I was a teenager I worked at a family supermarket.  There was an older gentleman there that had a saying that stuck with me forever.  A big load of groceries would come in off the truck and our job was to get the load into the store and on the shelves.  Every Tuesday and Thursday he would say the same thing to us.  “Ok boys, tonight we are going to HIT IT HARD AND COAST”.

Hit it hard and coast. Work hard, unload the groceries, shorten your breaks and then have a bigger break when the job was done.  Simple.  I love that saying.  I used it with the boys (Max and Chris) all the time.

Our society is built around COASTING first and then WORKING later.  ie…paying on credit and then having to pay the bill later…eating a big greasy meal and then working out later etc.

The principle of ‘hit it hard and coast’ is just the opposite.  Work first. Relax second.

Simple advice that Max and Chris both took to heart….usually!

Hit it hard and coast.

Be The Best.

Roy’s in San Diego – the full story!

If you ever get a chance to go to Roy’s (Hawaiian Fusion Restaurant)….go! It is awesome.  We went for the first time in Hawaii several years ago and go back whenever we have a chance.  With the closest location in Hawaii or California, that’s not too often so when we were in San Diego a few weeks back with Steve and Meggan we jumped at the chance.

Because it was the Saturday night before Mother’s Day and they were doing a big Mother’s Day promo, I called the manager that afternoon and explained our situation to him.  I said that Ingrid was a very proud Mom, but too much emphasis on that point would be hard for us to deal with at this time.

The manager said no problem, he’d handle things….and he did.

The server was amazing.  Kind, attentive, outgoing and he didn’t say one thing at any point in the evening that remotely made us uneasy or uncomfortable.  As our dinner progressed the restaurant began to slow down and our server spent a little more time with us and we got to chatting about his pursuits (he’s studying architecture), his background (he’s from Miami and recently moved to San Diego to study) and his plans for the future.  You know who this young man reminded us of that evening in a very indirect way.  Yup.  And guess what was the topper?  At the end of the evening as we were paying the bill we asked what his name was.

“My name is Chris”, he said.

Of course it was.

Now, this was simply a chance encounter and we realize there are thousands of young men named Chris throughout North America.  That being said, it was a pretty special moment on the eve of a very different Mother’s Day.

Be The Best.

San Diego: an epic short film

After the complete shut-out at Cannes, Sundance and an unfortunate snub by the Oscars for the epic short ‘Walking in Langley’ subtitled something about birds or something, I remain undeterred.  For your viewing pleasure I present, ‘San Diego: an epic short film’.

You can see the ‘new normal’ in action.  It’s a weird thing…that little walking segment that you’ll see was probably the most emotional part of the trip.  Just going for that morning walk with Ingrid got us talking, remembering and thinking about future experiences never to be experienced.  You combine that with synchronized coffee drinking (this was not planned and you’ll see it when you view) and you have this interesting recipe of tears, sadness, love, joy, pride, sorrow, jokes and laughter that forms our current reality.

I’m sure the Oscar people will get it this time round….  😉

PS In a future post I will tell you why I like to work with the Hilton brand whenever I can.  Thanks to the management of the San Diego Hilton who understood why we were there and did a great job in respecting what we needed.