How did you get that F*#king awesome job Kim Pickett?

She’s a big city gal who helps her clients tell their visual stories. Meet risk taker, snowboarder, beach volleyball player and creative director Kim Pickett of KIMBO Design. Bravery in the form of big big, bold life moves across vast spaces (for example, loading up your vehicle and to move across Canada) is always an interesting story to me. When a colleague suggested I profile Vancouver-based designer and branding expert Pickett, I jumped at the chance. Being in the storytelling game myself, I always love to hear what fuels other creatives’ fire and where they see their future.

An Ontario gal originally, Kim drove across the USA and Canada to move to rainy Vancouver a decade and a half ago from Toronto. She started her design career juggling a couple of jobs (hello generation Xennial, amiright?). She bartended at night and did graphic design in her bedroom in the day for almost three years before she started renting out an office space, hiring a team and working with a varied bouquet of clients.

Since incorporating in 2008, Kimbo design has helped everyone from the Saskatchewan provincial government to apiarists to one of my favourite Vancouver hotspots, The Burrard. More recently Pickett and her team have worked with Prince George to market all the opportunities bubbling in the northern BC town. A campaign she’s particularly proud of, Pickett really enjoys learning about Prince George and the other communities she works with. As in why do people live there? What do they look like? What’s it like to experience their community?

I can relate to her innate curiosity about northern places (cue: my love for both Edmonton and Haida Gwaii. So please join me in learning more about this dynamo design director and her focused career full of creativity.

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Give Your Garden Some TLC: Transform Your Neglected Outside Space

Photo: Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Sometimes, you can spend so long decorating the interior of your home – making it a cozy haven where you can display family memories and travel mementos – that it means that your garden space doesn’t get given much thought. If the kids use your backyard to play it can become a little messy around the edges. Often this is when you start to have no inclination to get out there and enjoy the space. Therefore, a little Tender Loving Care in your backyard space could be just what it needs to make it a haven and an environment that can be utilized by the whole family.

Here are some ideas to help you to spruce up your garden space and ensure that it’s no longer neglected. Read more

Anthology ~ July Edition ~ Coastlines

Weekend Anthology - July 2017- Coastal Reads
A stunner of the Amalfi Coast c/o Jan Tielens on Unsplash

Here’s a slightly tardy round up of the best links on the web this July. But first a wee #islandlife summer update…

Who is loving all their sunshine, friends, campfires and road trips of our North American summer season? And what about my southern readers? Counting down the days until winter is over?

We’re having a pretty brisk summer here on Haida Gwaii. I think there’s only been handful of days of 20C+ weather. But luckily, the things I love most about summer here are still everywhere: beach hangs, berries and festivals. We’ve been busy picking salmon berries and huckleberries and can’t wait for thimbleberries, salal and black berries. And in the meantime, you might catch me scrolling through photos of the Amalfi Coast, planning for a ladies getaway next year. Oh, the contrasts of life.

Onwards to some of the internet’s best links these days. I’ve been dreaming of coasts around the world. From the Italy to Mozambiqe, here’s a bevvy of coastal reads and links to inspire your weekend.   Read more

Driving with Kiddo: 6 tips for tear-free, toddler-friendly road trips

Scenes like this from the Icefields Parkway - not yours to behold when you're trying to beat the crying clock of your bambino. Photo credit: Walter Lam/Flickr/CC
Scenes like this from the Icefields Parkway – not yours to behold when you’re trying to beat the cry clock of your bambino. Photo credit: Walter Lam/Flickr/CC

As I drove north on the Icefields Parkway, the western spine of Canada (aka the Rocky Mountains), the road trip was a blur. I was racing against time: trying to get to my destination before my then five-month-old woke up hungry and angry after being in a car for WAY TOO LONG on this seemingly NEVERENDING (translation: two days) road trip.

We sped by so many sights – Castle Mountain, Crowfoot Glacier, Mount Chepheren – instead of stopping to bask in the grandeur of the Canadian Rockies like all the other happy-looking families, we didn’t. There was just one panicky thought on repeat in my head: ‘When is this road trip going to end?’

We were on day two of travel across British Columbia and part of Alberta to go see my partner in central Alberta. Here we were on an incredibly beautiful road trip that people from around the world pay big bucks to come and do. Frankly I didn’t enjoy the scenic surroundings because I didn’t pack enough supplies or give myself enough time to get there. We ended up having to stop in David Thompson, kiddo balling his eyes out and mommy very frazzled for a snack, leg stretch and calm down.

Fast forward a year. Many road trips – Tofino, Victoria, Kamloops, Lesser Slave Lake, Calgary, Drumheller – big and small later, we are starting to find our family travel groove. I once interviewed Micheal A. Palmer – an international traveller, family guy and author. He travelled across Canada with his wife and THREE, yes, three kids a few summers ago and had all kinds of wisdom to share. The uptake: plan, stop often, eat healthy. You can read more here.

The summer of 2015 we explored Alberta. After a few slightly stressful trips, I decided to try to start learning from our four-wheel journeys. Whether I’m driving alone with our little dude or we’re on a trip with the whole fam (mama, daddy + tiny tyrant), if I implement the six tips below, it makes for a tear-free trip.  Read more