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6 Affordable Ways to Boost your Home's Curb Appeal
 
When buyers come to see your home, the first thing they notice is how your property looks from the curb. That first impression is powerful and lingering. If buyers don't like what they see, it can influence how they judge the rest of your property, regardless of how great it looks on the inside.
 
You definitely want to do whatever you can to boost curb appeal. Here are six affordable ideas to consider:


1. Driveway sealing. This makes the pavement look darker and less faded. It also helps cover up some of the cracks. Sealing won't give you the "brand new" look of repaving, but it's close — and significantly less expensive.


2. Exterior window washing. Washing the front windows makes them look clean and bright. In fact, the effect can be stunning. There are window washing products that connect to your hose to make this job easier. Check your home improvement retailer.


3. Maintaining shrubs, hedges and flower beds. Trimming the hedges, shrubs and other evergreens can make a big difference in how your property looks from the street. It's like giving them all a haircut! Flowering plants can also brighten up the look.


4. Front door painting. From the curb, a buyer's eye is naturally drawn to your front door. If your entry system looks old and worn, consider a fresh coat of paint. It can make the entrance look almost new.


5. Garage door painting. This is a bigger project that can take a day or two, but the effort might be worth it. For many homes, the garage door is the biggest item in the curb appeal panorama. Making it look better will have a big impact.


6. Removing unsightly items. Look at your home from the street. Are there items in your field of vision that take away from the curb appeal? For example, are there garbage cans and other items stowed along the side of the property and visible from the road? If so, move them

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Weather this weekend is 18-21 chance of showers on Sunday

Friday


Indigenous Awareness Art Expo, Friday 9am-12pm Kariton Art Gallery-House 2387 Ware St

Enjoy original artworks from many aboriginal artists, including Mahood Sculptures.

 

Kellen Saip & Old Abbey Ales Beer Collab Release Party, Friday 5pm-11pm, Old Abby Ales 1A 30321 Fraser HWY

Kellen Saip and Old Abby Ales teamed up to bring you an easy drinking summer beer inspired by the refreshing tastes of iced tea and lemonade. The ‘Don’t Be Scared’ lager is a great name for a beer, so don’t be scared to try something new while enjoying some great music and games.

 

Yoga in the Park, Friday 5:30pm-6:30 2478 McCallum Rd (Jubilee Park)

This is the first free yoga in the park event, it is open to all levels, and is a BYOM (bring your own mat)

 

Savasana into Summer, at Mill Lake Park Friday 7pm-10

This is a free event, but you do need to go to Eventbrite.ca to register.

 

Wine down Friday, 6pm-9pm Singletree Winery (5782 Mt. Lehmen Rd)

$5 cover Jeremy Facknitz, youtube him! He is awesome! and also wine.


Saturday


Mill Lake Music Concert Series, Saturday 7pm-9pm Kaitor Art Gallery

This week Cascadia Wind Ensemble, so bring a chair or blanket and get cozy to some beautiful music!

 

Abbotsford Eatery Grand Opening Party, Saturday 12pm-6pm @ Trading Post Brewery (Abbotsford Eatery)

This is a family event!

Beer and wine tasting (Not for the kids though)

Charcuterie Spent grain treats and ice cream samples

a Pig Roast, Face Painting, Kids activities, Live music, and Giveaways

 

Summer Fest at Abby Farm and Country Market, Saturday 9am-1pm 33771 George Ferguson Way

Along with all the great vendors there will also be some live music.

 

Sirens For Life Blood Donation Event, Saturday 9:30am-3:30

Abbotsford’s First Responders are inviting our community to join us to donate blood on behalf of your local heroes this summer. You can reserve a time online at www.blood.ca or call 1-888-2-DONATE

 

Abbotsford Community in Bloom Garden Tour, Saturday 10am-3pm Tanglebank Gardens & Brambles Bistro (Cutest name EVER) 29985 Downes Rd

Enjoy a self-guided tour of Abbotsford’s Private Gardens. Tickets at Tanglebank. Refreshments and music as well.


Sunday


BBQ with AbbyPD, Sunday 11:30-1pm 2808 Garden St V2T 3R5

Meet the Chief and Local Officers at this family friendly free event!

 

This event is going all weekend!


Rescue Dog & Cat/Kitten Adoption Event, PetSmart (3122 Mt. Lehman Rd HighStreet)

Embrace Discarded Animal Society in conjunction with PetSmart is holding an adoption event! Helping to find these little cuties their furever homes.



-Alyson UA

Social Media Marketing

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The weather is mild this weekend, 18 with chance of showers tomorrow and 21 and cloudy for Sunday, not too hot and not too cold! 


Your favourite berry has its own festival! The Strawberry Festival is on Saturday from 9am-6pm at Maan Farms. Wine tasting, U-Pick, entertainment, strawberry wagon tours a real-life strawberry princess, and basically anything and everything strawberry! So, if you are insanely obsessed with like strawberries, this event is a must! $15 online and $20 in store.


There is a butterfly Release Party at the Mission Library! Enjoy some stories and getting up and close to some Painted Lady Butterflies! Saturday 2pm-3pm at the Mission Library. 


Saturday evening is Indigenous Performers night! This is the kick off to the Mill Lake Concert Series. Bring a blanket or some chairs and enjoy the amazing talents of Indigenous Hip Hop Artists and their message of Anti-Bullying! 7pm @ 2387 Ware St.


The Trethewey House is hosting Aboriginal Arts and Culture Day on Sunday 10am-5pm. This is a free family event in recognition of Aboriginal Awareness Month. Learn about Aboriginal culture, art, history and tradition! There is a drum making workshop starting at 11am with Darren Charlie!


The 23rd annual Fraser Valley Children’s festival is happening on Sunday 10am-4pm, at Fraser River Heritage Park. This event is free, and parking is by donations. There will be stilt walkers, a costume tent, horses, dragon creations (not sure what that is but it sounds cool!) AND MUCH MORE


Do you love hot sauce? Well if so Natures Pickin’s will be hosting a Hot Sauce tasting on Sunday at 12! 


Have an awesome weekend!


-Alyson UA

Social Media Marketing

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MAY LONG WEEKEND is almost here! What are your plans? The weather is supposed to be 21-22 and partly cloudy for Saturday and Sunday. then on Monday it might rain.

 

The Fort Langley Beer + Food festival is happening on Saturday 12pm-6pm. This event is 19+ and tickets are available at www.fortlangley.beer  23433 Mavis Ave.

 

There is a grand opening event at Everything Wine Abbotsford.  If you like wine check out this new location and enjoy wine and light snacks. Doors open at 10am 1828 McCallum Rd

 

The Cloverdale Rodeo is this weekend! Starting tonight with the 42nd Annual Bed Races starting at 5:45-7pm with skateboard demos, decorated bike parade and the bed races starting at 6:15pm

The 22nd Annual Cloverdale Chili Cook-off is tomorrow starting at 4:30-6:30pm, not only do you get to taste some yummy chili, there will be bouncy castles (maybe before all that chili), face painting and entertainment at the Clover Square Village Mall at 17700 HWY #10

On Saturday the 73rd annual Cloverdale Rodeo Parade is starting at 10am. I love a good ol’ fashioned parade, don’t you?

 

There is so much to do this weekend! A lot of the Farmers Markets have opened for the season, which is your favourite? 


Don't forget to tell us what your plans are!! And we love pictures of yummy foods (wink), and all the fun activities that you all do! 

 

-Alyson UA

Social Media Marketing

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·         There will be brunches Galore this weekend for Mother’s Day, but if you’re looking for something a little bit     different here’s a copulation of events this weekend.

 

·         The Greater Vancouver Food Truck Festival will be in Abbotsford this Saturday 11am-6pm. There will be live music, and Magician Wes Barker, face painting, photo booth, AND TWENTY FOOD TRUCK including Tacofino! OH YA!  This event is being held at Thunderbird Memorial Square (right next to City Hall)

 

·         There is a Vintage Spring Market on May 10 (4pm-9pm) and May 11th (10am-5pm) at 46050 Higginson Rd Chilliwack (Higginson Heritage Homestead). Admission is $5 children and parking are free

 

·         Opening day of the Yarrow Farm Market is on Friday 4pm-8pm, located at 4380 Kehler St. Chilliwack

 

·         The Hard Rock Casino is hosting a Mother’s Day Brunch. Doors open at 11am and brunch will be served at 11:30 until 2pm. Adults: $29.99 and children: $15.99. Tickets need to be booked in advance

 

·         Lepp Farm Market is hosting a Mother’s Day Brunch Buffet! Adults $34.99 and children (12 and under) $17.99, and children under 5 are free! Not only do they have a variety of tasty treats, they also have an omelet station! Woot WOOT!





-Alyson UA

Social Media Marketing

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My Grandfather and his family migrated to Abbotsford from Manitoba in the early 1940’s, they had been a part of a Mennonite Colony that had fled Russia in 1925. Our history is rich in Abbotsford, and Abbotsford has a rich history. From its first mill and its ties to the CP Railway to being known as the Berry capital of Canada. A while back I wrote a couple of short posts about Abbotsford’s Mill Lake history, one of my most favorite places in Abbotsford, and I felt that it deserved its own blog post. So here it is.


In the late 1800's Mill Lake's first mill produced over 50,000 railway ties for the Canadian Pacific Railway, which was promised to British Columbia to get the colony to join the confederation in 1871, which they did (YEAH). The lake was originally named Bais Lake, after a pioneer farmer. Later it was named Abbotsford Lake due to the proximity of the small village of Abbotsford, however, that name did not last long and soon after it was named Mill Lake.

Did you know, the Japanese water lilies that float on the lake today were brought over from Japan by the homesick wives of the mill workers in the early 1900's? Many of the workers were Japanese, Chinese and South Asian during the late 1800’s and 1900’s. The Abbotsford Timber and Trading Company, that was established in 1912 nine years after the Tretheway brothers purchased the mill on Mill Lake, donated building materials for Abbotsford's first Sikh Temple. The lumber was carried by Sikh men, by hand, from the lake to the temple location on South Fraser Way where it still stands and is one of Canada’s oldest Sikh Temple.

The mill closed down in 1934 due to the Great Depression and a severe depletion of the forests in the area, which caused frequent flooding. The Abbotsford Lions Club purchased the site, and with the help of the District of Matsqui, they removed the old mill equipment and started to develop the park into what it is today.

Mill Lake is full of trout and is apart of the “fishing in the city” program designated by the Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC, there is an outdoor pool, splash park, and some great playgrounds for the kids. The easy walking trails around the lake let you really take in the beauty of it. The lake is home of the Western Painted Turtle, which is an endangered list, a pair of resident bald eagles, cheeky squirrels, and ducks, lots of ducks.

·         Most of this information was researched on http://boulevardgroup.ca

 

-Alyson Whittle UA

Social Media Marketing

 

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Do you have plans this weekend? If not check out these events for April 26-28


Like flowers? Who doesn’t! Check out the Yarrow plant sale in Chilliwack Saturday from 9am to noon! The biggest little plant sale features local growers which is great!

There is a BlossomFest at the Taves farm on Saturday and Sunday. What is a Blossomfest you ask, well theres going to be a Gnome Scavenger Hunt, sunflower seed planting, crafts, hay rides and a petting barn. 10am-4pm Adult prices are $4.50 and children $10.95.  Located at the Taves Farm!

If pretty things aren’t your jam, you should check out the BC Reptile Clubs Spring Expo. It runs throughout the weekend from 10am-5 on Saturday and 10am-4 on Sunday. You can expect to see, snakes, and lizard and amphibians OH MY! $6.00 for adults and $4.00 for children 4-13yrs (children under 4 free). Located at the Ag-Rec Center 32470 Haida Dr.

If music is what you’re into, these next events are for you!

There is a FVCW (Fraser Valley Community Winds) & FVWE (Fraser Valley Wind Ensemble) Annual Spring Concert “The Hero’s Journey” at the Matsqui Centennial Auditorium. Tickets on sale at FVCW.ca $15 for adults, $10 for students/seniors/children.

The Abbotsford Quilter Guild Show will feature singer Jana Seale on Friday and Saturday, from 11am-5 you can enjoy music, amazing quilts, a raffle and tea room, as well as merchants. Tickets are $5 at the door.  3145 Gladwin Rd (Abbotsford Pentecostal Assembly Church)

On Saturday The Rundown (Band) will be preforming at the Canadian Brewhouse at 9pm-midnight. They will sing all your favourites and you can enjoy great food and drinks that the Brewhouse has to offer. This is an adult only show.

If you like country music, then you will LOVE Sean Burns. I have personally seen him 3x in the last 4 years. It is always a blast to watch him play! You can check him out on Sunday at TractorGrease Café from 1-4pm. 48710 Chilliwack Lake Rd V4Z 1A6.

The Hard Rock Casino Vancouver is presenting Platinum Blond and Chilliwack on Saturday. Get your tickets at ticketmaster.com, the remaining tickets are $70.25 a piece. This is an 18+ show.

Kids driving you nuts? Bring them down to Abbotsford Community Library. Every Saturday till June, the library hosts Blastoff to Story time at 11:30am.

The Langley Fine Arts School’s Photography and Creative writing department have an exhibit in Fort Langley called “This is Kwantlen” 24 large scale black and white portraits and biographies displayed around Fort Langley identifying the importance of the Kwantlen First Nations to the community. This Exhibit runs until May 31st.

Looking for some awesome deals? Check out the Free community garage sale at Extra Storage Now, on, Saturday from 9am-4. 3210 McCallum Rd.

There is the Vintage Barn Market at The Heritage Park Chilliwack, 44140 Luckakuck Rd. Runs Friday 4-10pm and Saturday 10am-6pm.

Mission downtown is hosting a Spring Fling Sidewalk Sale on Saturday from 11am-3pm. I LOVE SHOPPING!

There is so much going on in the Fraser Valley!! Do you plan on going to any of these events? Or is there something we didn’t mention, that you are going too? Let us Know!

 

***Rely on Rene is not affiliated with any of these businesses or community events.

 

 

-Alyson Whittle UA

Social Media Marketing

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Easter Egg hunts in and around the Lower Mainland!

Most of these are B.Y.O.B. – Bring Your Own Basket


7th Annual Easter Egg Hunt

Where: Chilliwack Corn Maze, 41905 Yale Rd West, Chilliwack

When: Friday and Saturday 10-4pm

Highlights: Easter Bunny, jumping pillow, pedal carts, indoor hay bale maze, face painting and a concession lunch available and a bunch more!

Price: $10 for children 2+ Parents are free

chilliwackcornmaze.com

 

Easter Egg Hunt + Breakfast

Where: Mann Farms 790 McKenzie Rd, Abbotsford

When: Friday-Monday 9:30am

Highlights: Breakfast with the Easter Bunny (purchase tickets separately). Goody bags, “find the golden egg, for awesome prizes, petting zoo, and more

Price: $10 for children, Parents are FREEEEEEEE

https://www.maanfarms.com

 

Egg Hunt at Swensson Park

Where: Swensson Park, 27875 Swensson Ave, Abbotsford

When: Saturday 12-2pm

Highlights: Goody bags, crafts, face painting, and Live BUNNIES!!! Free coffee too, and MORE

Price: $5.00

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Swensson-Park/120792954641137

 

Easter EGGSTRAVAGANZA

Where: CLCC Abbotsford, 3511 Straiton Rd

When: Friday 10-11:30

Highlights: FREE, bouncy castles, games, activities, and popcorn. An Easter story w/ sand artist Valentina Bayard (11-11:30)  and SO A LOT MORE

Price: Freeeeeee

https://clcc.ca

 

Family-Friendly Easter EVENT: Taves EasterFest

Where: Taves Family Farms, 333 Gladwin Rd, Abbotsford

When: Friday-Monday 9:30-4:30

Highlights: Hay ride, a Magician (Saturday and Sunday), petting barn, and a place called Bunny town (that sounds adorable) and SO MUCH MORE

Price: $4.50 (12yrs +) includes Hayride $10.95 (walking to 12yrs) includes Egg/Scavenger hunt and hayride

 

Kids’ Club Easter Party

Where: Otter Co-Op 3650-248th st Aldegrove

When: Friday 10-2pm

Highlights: Open to all children under 12, 3-$50 co-op gift cards to be won during the scavenger hunt and so much more!!!!

Price: ITS FREEEEEEEEE

https://www.otterco-op.crs

 

3rd Annual Easter Extravaganza

Where: Golden Ears Cheesecrafters, 22270 128th Ave, Maple Ridge

When: Friday 9-4pm

Highlights: Meet the Easter Bunny, Easter Egg Hunts (additional cost of $8.99, limited space, pre register), live cow milking, petting zoo, Photo Booth mini sessions, face painting and more

Price:$2:50 online $3:50 at gate (hunt not included)

www.goldenearscheeseworks.com

 

Please note that these are only a few of the Hunts avaiable this weekend. Groups and companies are announcing new ones everyday! You can plan you whole weekend around these awesome events!! I truly hope everyone has a wonderful long weekend with family and loved ones. I hope you all stop and smell the flowers, and maybe do a little dance in the rain.



-Alyson Whittle UA

Social Media Marketing

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Worried about the rainy season? Here are some ideas of things to do to pass the time and will help you get ready for the warmer weather.


Spring = a lot of rainy days, but don’t be sad, the rain brings the plants and trees back to life. It also gives you a chance to get into the spring-cleaning mood. Who doesn’t like a good ol’ cleaning frenzy! To get things started I suggest finding a high energy sing-along playlist.


AND. CRANK. IT. UP.


Dive right in and get crazy with your closets, look at things that you do not wear, take out your favorite summertime outfits, and get rid of the random clutter that’s accumulated over the winter. After the organizing is done (you can do the kitchen and bathrooms cupboard and drawers, and storage areas) its all about cleaning things that never get cleaned, such as walls, baseboards, rugs/carpets, windows, vents, mirrors, couch cushions, curtains, anything that has been neglected during the winter.


If you’re feeling like you need a change to your home, redecorate (or move, I know a good Realtor®)!!! Just changing some pictures on the walls around or introducing a mirror or new rug can really change up a room.   


The garage needs some love too, I wouldn’t put all the winter gear in to storage yet, that’s just asking Mother Nature to remind you who ends winter and who doesn’t. Sweeping out and power washing the garage is a great way to give it new life. Who doesn’t love a good power wash!!  


Have you looked in the back seat of your car? I don’t know about yours but mine looked like I actually lived in it. Just getting out the garbage, toys, socks, shoes, pants (what happened there?) and all the other unnecessary junk that you just don’t need.


I like to make plans for what I want in my yard in early March. What kind of flowers do I want to plant and where? When do I have to plant them? Do I want to make a garden this year? Researching, drawing it out and brainstorming helps you organize your thoughts about what you need to buy and accumulate these next couple of months.


Spring is such a rejuvenating season, so don’t forget to go outside and look for inspiration. Maybe do a little dance in the rain.


-Alyson Whittle UA

Social Media Marketing

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Ever wish you could become one of those rare morning people? The ones that wake with a start, feeling refreshed and energized. The ones that get in that morning workout or wrap up some work before many of us even hit the snooze button for the first time. Here are five tips to help you achieve that early bird status!

  1. Create a morning schedule. Physically write down the things you’d like to complete in the morning and set a time for each. Then stick with it. Once you force yourself out of bed early one or two weeks consistently, you’ll find it gets easier and easier to do.
  2. Let the light in. Whether natural or artificial, light tells your brain its time to get up and get going. If your room lacks large windows where you can open the blinds up, consider investing in a timed lamp or alarm clock with a light.
  3. Prep and eat breakfast. Although there are many of us who chose the skip breakfast, it is key to perking up your energy in the morning. Try prepping protein-focused meals the night before or grab a yogurt or fruit and try to consume it right after you wake.
  4. Get your body moving. Whether it’s a short walk around your neighborhood or a rigorous 5:30 am spin class, getting your blood pumping will help wake up your body and has a ton of other benefits, like stress and anxiety reduction.
  5. Feed your mind. Stimulate your brain and do something you enjoy first thing in the morning. Try reading a favorite book, catching up on the news, doing daily meditation, or setting intentions.
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Home is where the heart is, and the mess. There is so much wear and tear that our homes endure and if you are anything like me you don’t really notice until you are either thinking about listing your home or are wanting to upgrade it in some way, like adding a feature wall. Cleaning things like walls or the carpet can get expensive and are extremely time consuming, so here are a few tricks you can use to minimize the everyday wear.


Area rugs, area rugs, area rugs! They protect your carpet and floors from, dirt and grime, they also help shield your floors from dents and dings saving your wallet and time. One of the biggest things I’ve noticed just getting absolutely ruined is our walls. I have never thought about the wellness of our walls before, but they do make a huge impact on living spaces. When walls become dingy, marked up and grimy, it effects the whole room. And sometimes you can’t even tell until the sun hits your walls just right and you can see 15 tiny greasy handprints just waving at you. I also didn’t realize how easily toddlers can chip the paint off the walls like its their job. Fixing that is going to be a lot of mudding and sanding and sanding and painting. Great. There are ways that you can protect your walls. Wainscoting is something I’ve just learned about and I feel like it would be a great way to protect your walls, it also adds a really nice feature to the room. If you are having problems with your child drawing on the walls, it might be a good idea to maybe paint half of your child’s wall, or a wall in the play room with chalkboard paint. Have a designated area where they can create their masterpieces. (I’m not sure how hard it would be to take this paint off or if it could be painted over though so keep that in mind). I think another great way to protect walls is wallpaper. I swore I would never ever EVER use wallpaper in my home. It was such a pain to remove and it was really dated. BUT now they have what is basically giant stickers that you can use. Easy to apply, remove, and easy to clean (bonus). If you aren’t interested in wallpaper or wainscoting, that’s fine, they aren’t for everyone, you can invest in wall paint that is designed to be easy to clean and is durable. You still have to clean them, but it makes it much easier and doesn’t chip off easily.


Each of these tips and tricks will help you maintain your homes basic features from everyday life, giving you just a little bit more control with how your home looks, without spending your precious time cleaning and fixing.


-Alyson Whittle UA

Social Media Marketing

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    I wanted to find out more things that are Canadian, things that we purchase daily. Things like gas, clothing, cleaning products etc. It is honestly so hard to stay focused when reading about all the things that are and aren’t Canadian, its almost like gossip, “Did you hear that Tim Hortons is owned by a Brazilian company? THE NERVE!”


    While researching for this blog I found some super awesome websites that I am now obsessed with. They all specialize in local, Canadian owned and made products, and each site offers an array of very different things. They’re basically farmers markets that you can go to without having to leave the house. The first one I found was Foodiepages.ca. They feature a collection of Craft food and drinks made in Canada by small independent makers. You can subscribe to monthly clubs, purchase gift boxes and you can shop individual items and vendors. If you want to feel really good about spending some money, check out LocalBoom.ca. Their online store presents the buyer with a collection of various products from skin and beauty to undies from Canadian and local brands. The best part about this company is that they actively donate back into communities across the country. Since their launch in October 2017 they have donated; $2750 to charities and organizations, 200 bars of soap to women’s shelters, 50 pairs of underwear to men’s shelters, and 85 lbs of animal food. If you need more convincing, they have amazing gift boxes (just bought one for my sister!) and offer free shipping for orders over $30. The last one I’ll be talking about is craftedcanada.ca. They have such an interesting array of products, and like the two companies above they are all Canadian crafted. Dedicated to showcasing Canadian products and vendors from across Canada you can be sure to find some fun items, like pickled fiddleheads, wild mushroom powder (never heard of this before but I immediately need it), fresh BC nettles, fresh wild mushrooms, syrup and coffee. This is the first time I’ve heard about companies like this, but I love this idea!


    Ok now to everyday products. Things that we purchase daily, weekly, or monthly. There are a lot of locally made clothing out there, however it can get expensive and there isn’t very much variety (please let me know if I’m wrong). If you are looking for shoes go to your local mall and you will find ALDO which is a Canadian company, they sell non-Canadian products, but you can feel good purchasing for them. I’ve been really enjoying Mark’s Work Wearhouse lately, and they are a Canadian company (yeah). They offer heavy duty work wear as well as casual wear like sweaters and jeans. If you like outside (who doesn’t) you’ll be happy to know that Mountain Equipment Co-Op is owned by “everyone who shops there”. Life long Memberships are $5.00, and I think that is quite reasonable. They are proud to call Canada their backyard and so am I.


    We all need gas for our vehicles, unless of course you have an electric car (BC is third, for Electric vehicle sales in 2018 at 2564, in Canada). I feel pretty good getting my gasoline from Petro-Canada, which is owned by Suncor. Not only do they give back to Canada by sponsoring Canadian Olympic and Paralympic Athletes, they deliver fuel directly to our Canadian farmers and you can be sure to find a Petro Canada in the middle of nowhere, because “the middle of nowhere isn’t nowhere to the people that live there”. Any homeowners out there? If you are you probably visit Home Hardware at least once a month. Which is great since they are the last remaining Canadian owned major hardware store chain. Rona was purchased by American Giant Lowe’s back in 2016.


    The last company today is Reinhart Foods. They are the oldest company I’ve come across so far. Founded in 1910, this Canadian family owned company produces vinegar, pickles, cleaning products, and raisins and dates. John Reinhart purchased the land that the company is still located on in 1910, they produced apple products from locally grown apples. They and expanded their products from that time.

  • ·         Reinhart’s Light Cider
  • ·         Allen’s Vinegar
  • ·         Reinhart’s Apple Cider Vinegar
  • ·         Allen’s Cleaning Vinegar
  • ·         Dalton’s Coconut
  • ·         Dalton’s Maraschino Cherries
  • ·         Dalton’s Glace Fruit
  • ·         Dalton’s Mincemeat
  • ·         Jaffa’s Raisins
  • ·         Jaffa’s Dates

Well that was a mouth full. I hope you enjoyed this blog, I really did have a lot of fun writing it. If I missed a company or product that you can’t live without and is Canadian comment below.

* Most of the information on this blog is directly from the websites of each company. As well as madeinca.ca*


-Alyson Whittle UA

Social Media Marketing

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Hello, my name is Alyson. I am Rene Brassards Social Media Coordinator, and website contributor. Rene is a busy guy, making sure his clients are his number 1 priority. I help him maneuver through the abyss that is social media, as well as find content for post and blogs. I am  full time mom of two and enjoy long walks on a beach… In this new year be sure to watch for new blog posts, videos and much more.


-Alyson Whittle UA

Social Media Marketing

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More and more Canadians are becoming hyper conscious about where the products they buy are coming from. It has become easier to purchase products made in your community, such as artisan cheese, home made bread, knitted attire etc, thanks to websites like Etsy and community markets. But what about all the other things we must spend money on, like services and grocery store products.  

When I started researching this topic my intention was to have a variety of different companies that provide different products or services, but I was hungry, so everything below is food related. Oops. In my defence, it was like going down a rabbit hole, once you started on one subject, in this case food, you wanted to know more and more about other food companies. So here is an accidental list of Canadian food providers. A lot of these companies also manufacture in multiple provinces, which provide thousands of jobs to the people of Canada yearly. They are proud to be Canadian and I am proud to buy from them!

We are going to start off with most things you can find at your local grocery. McCain’s Frozen Products are not only Canadian owned, they also manufacture their products in Manitoba, New Brunswick and Alberta! That’s a lot of jobs they provide for Canada. If you’ve ever been to a mall in Canada you can always smell a Purdy’s Chocolate shop from a mile away, and yes please! If you’ve never had a hedgehog, stop reading this and go get some, might as well grab an icecream cone while you’re at it! Although they must purchase cocoa beans from outside of Canada (because they’re not grown here) they only purchase sustainable cocoa. Which is good for the world! Speaking of ice cream, I learned that Chapman’s Icecream is Canadian in possibly the most Canadian way, on The Rick Mercer Report! He created his own flavour and it was hilarious as per usual. Chapman’s is produced in Ontario and is delicious. Another great Canadian frozen food company is Pinty’s. they specialize in appetizers like chicken fingers and wings. So, you can feel good when you spend $150 on SuperBowl snacks when you don’t even like football. Cavendish Farms are known for their AMAZING hashbrown patties and other frozen potato products. They manufacture their potato goodness in PEI as well as use their famous PEI potato. FRANK products have a little bit of everything from BBQ peanuts, roasted cashews, to disinfectant and garbage bags. This company is owned by Canadian Tire, which is a publicly traded company, but still very Canadian.  I just started buying products from FRANK, and I am hooked. From potato chips to biodegradable compost bags FRANK has it all, and a huge bonus, its affordable. BOOM! You might not think that Canada would be producing anything Tex-Mex that is worth mentioning, but Que Pasa Foods makes some very delicious salsa and tortilla chips. If you haven’t tried them yet, I highly recommend! They are also manufactured in Delta! I was pleasantly surprised when I read that Cheemo Perogies are a family owned company that use products from Canadian farmers. These are my go-to perogies! They started their company 46 years ago and are still going strong. I love tuna sandwiches, and Ocean and Gold Seal canned fish is Canadian! They are owned by the Jim Patterson group, and although they are a Canadian company, they do have plants in Alaska as well, so if you are looking for a strictly Canadian canned fish, make sure you check the label.

 

I’m not going to lie, I love fast food, and fancy coffee. I do like to support locally owned Restaurants (we have great ones in Abbotsford). But sometimes I just want a burger and fries, or a pizza for dinner. I was surprised to read about the following Canadian “Fast Food” restaurants and will be making a conscious decision to stop and these fine establishments.

                Let’s start things off with coffee. Most people thing that Tim Hortons is Canadian, and they used to be, but it was shocking to find out that they are a Brazilian owned company! Second Cup on the other hand is all Canadian baby! They are more like Starbucks (United States) than Timmies but they do have the best brownies, and, in select shops, they have frozen yogurt. When I went to school, I ate Pita Pit EVERY.DAY. The chicken caeser with extra sauce was my favourite. They have great options if you are vegetarian or vegan. A&W has started to gain a lot of popularity in recent years, largely due to that guy on the commercials.  He talks about how the cows are raised without hormones, and that there is a new burger on the menu that is plant based! A&W has an interesting history, because they were a part of the American A&W Fast Food Chain when it was founded in Winnipeg in 1956 and 1972 A&W was sold to a British/Dutch company. The management of that Winnipeg restaurant decided to buy out the chain in 1995 eliminating all corporate ties outside of Canada!

 I save this restaurant for last because I was shocked to learn that it was founded in Abbotsford in 1986. Panago Pizza is such a great Canadian company. They put money back into their community and it seems like each owner of each store has a real tie with the communities that they are in. They do pizza, salad, and chicken wings. We used to get the taco pizza all the time, it never got old having sour cream and lettuce on a pizza!

                Canada is awesome and has so many more great companies! And maybe when I’m not so hungry I’ll write about companies that offer service and are 100% Canadian owned.

The details: I got all this info at a great Canadian website called madeinca.ca. I also fact checked on the website Bloomberg.com, mostly because some things I was reading kind of blew my mind.


-Alyson Whittle UA

Social Media Marketing

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10 Abbotsford Restaurants You Must Try

(in no particular order)


1. Sui Shi Ya Japanese Restaurant. Four words, ALL YOU CAN EAT. This sushi restaurant is great for the raw and non-raw fish eating folk that enjoy Japanese cuisine. Tip: All you can eat is available on weekends and holidays. Making a reservation is a must.


2. S+L Kitchen & Bar is a great place for special occasions like anniversaries, or birthdays, or, my favourite, happy hour. This place offers gluten free and vegetarian menus as well. The best thing on the menu is the Crispy local Brussels, and I don’t even like brussel sprouts! How does that happen?


3. Brodeur’s Bistro is a Cajun restaurant that offers a blend of Montreal and New Orleans Cuisine. They have the best smoked meat sandwich outside of Montreal as well as Gumbo, Shrimp po boys, catfish tacos and Jambalaya. Welcome to Flavour Town.


4. Bow & Stern has a great selection of local craft beer and is a great place for seafood lovers. Whether you’re into crab legs and butter, lobster and butter, raw oysters, shrimp (with butter shh) or fish and chips this place is for you. My all-time fave is the hot seafood plate with a little bit of everything!


5. J’s Pizza, mmmmmm pizza. They sell pizza by the slice, which is handy for a “treat yo’ self” lunch on the run. Great for a family pizza night, or a game night Thursday. Who doesn’t love a cheesy piece of pizza pie? My mouth is watering just thinking about it!


6. Greek Islands Restaurant is an Abbotsford staple. The atmosphere is fantastic for family dinners and get togethers. They set cheese on fire at your table, and then you eat it. Best part is there’s no judging, because everyone around you is enjoying the Saganaki (A.K.A. fried cheese) just like you.


7. Paliotti’s. Pasta pasta pasta baby. Bring your appetite because the portions are huge! They’ve also mastered lambchops, pizzetta (fancy Italian pizza), veal, and many other Italian dishes. The atmosphere is fabulous, when you walk in you are transported straight to Italy!


8. Restaurant 62. The ‘Fraser Valleys #1 Farm to Table Restaurant.’ To be honest, this restaurant isn’t for everyone. It is quite fancy; however, they offer gluten free corn bread and gluten free baguettes, and I understand their duck breast is worth a special trip. If fancy isn’t your thing check out the lunch menu. It has amazing soups like bacon and sweet potato bisque, sandwiches and salads all fresh from our local farms!


9. El Nopal. I know this isn’t in Abbotsford, but it might as well be. Actually, we should probably make El Nopal the Canadian embassy in Washington state (I know its not a thing, but if the world were perfect it would be). If you love Mexican food, you’ll love everything here. EVERYTHING. The highlights are the chips and salsa, pico de gallo, ENCHILADAS and the best burritos I’ve ever had. Make it a night – catch a Seahawks game being played on the many TV’s, try your luck at pull tabs or harness your inner star on karaoke night!


10. Gian’s Indian Cuisine is hard to beat. Butter chicken, lamb curry, and goat vindaloo (which is one of the healthiest meats you can eat BTW! Hello health food!) are just to name a few beloved dishes. Pakoras for days, paneer (cheese) in many different things like their drinkable butter sauce. They also offer some amazing, tasty vegetarian dishes that will make you rethink your life. Gian’s is a staple in Abbotsford for good reason.

      

       This blog has not been sponsored by the restaurants above. The views have been brought to you by my taste buds, as well as reviews on line and chit chat around town. Below are the links to each restaurant’s website for you’re viewing pleasure.


http://suishaya.ca/ 

http://www.jrg.ca/

http://www.bbistro.ca/

https://www.bowandstern.ca/

http://jspizza.ca/

https://greekislandsrestaurants.com/

http://paliottisitalianrestaurants.ca/abbotsford-italian-restaurant/

www.restaurant62.ca

http://www.elnopalsumas.com/

www.gians.ca


-Alyson Whittle

Social Media Marketing

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