the thirties grind

get up, go to work, raise kids, pay bills, sleep. repeat.

Archive for the month “August, 2012”

Absurd Vancouver Property of the Week (August 30th, 2012)

I love heritage-style homes.  There is something about the old world charm paired with modern fixtures and finishings, that appeals to me.  Often, however, homes like these come with a hefty price tag (depending on how Absurd the market is where you’re looking).

In Calgary, you could purchase this restored 100 year old home for $649, 500:

Yes, it’s and old timer, but it’s solid and has 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms and a good sized lot for the kiddos to play in. Read more…

The REAL Real Housewives of YVR: Eschelle Westwood

Eschelle Westwood is the author of, is a social media marketer, childcare provider and young mother.  She has two boys, the eldest of which will be entering kindergarten in September.  You can find her on Facebook, Twitter or Google+!

Samantha's Day   Read more…

Check it out! My man is pretty darn talented!

My husband just wrote, directed and produced his first commercial.  It is for our local radio station, 100.5 The Peak.  They are moving to a new frequency on September 10th, so that more people around the Lower Mainland can enjoy the amazing music and local talent they feature.  If he wins the contest, he is planning on donating the majority of the prize money to B.C. Children’s Hospital Foundation…because he is just that kind of guy.  I think it’s is a pretty stellar commercial (I’m a bit biased, for sure)…please watch it , enjoy and share!  Would love to know what you think…I’m a pretty proud wife today!

Absurd Vancouver Property of the Week (August 23, 2012)

I awoke this morning to rain.  For some reason, Porky Pig’s voice from the old Looney Tunes cartoons was in my head…

Is that all? Are the curtains closed on our summer here in Vancouver?  My thoughts turned to warmer climates…and, of course, houses.  What if summer never had to end — where would you live? Read more…

Land is at a premium…could this be where we are headed?


According to, “…a developer in Zhuzhou, China, the second largest city in the Hunan province, has actually built a set of houses on top of a shopping mall. It’s a perfect solution, really, for someone who loves or needs to live in the city, but wants suburban comforts like a lawn and personal privacy.”

I think the novelty of being able to walk to the food court for breakfast, lunch and dinner would wear off pretty darn fast.

Are you f*%#ing kidding me??!!!

Is that a sock in your hair or are you happy to see me? The secret to no more bad hair days!

As a working mom, I am always running out of the house in the morning with my hair half done (if I even get a chance to brush it).  My cousin recently told me about a way to do my hair that is simple, fast and requires minimal tools.  The Sock Bun!! Read more…

The REAL Real Housewives of YVR: Amber Strocel

Amber Strocel is a writer, dreamer, social media evangelist and problem-solver. She lives in the Vancouver suburbs with her two children and her husband. In her extremely rare and precious free time she gardens, attempts handcrafts and eats rather a lot of chocolate. She chronicles her life on her blog at, which she has been writing since May 2003. Through blogging, she has found inspiration and support, leading her to create an online course for mothers called Crafting my Life. Her experiences have made her believe in the power of social networking to bring people together. She also works as the Content Manager for, helping connect local moms with this fabulous city. Read more…

“She saved my life”: The importance of teaching 9-1-1 to your children.

This week, a little girl in Langford, possibly saved her mother’s life.  Rebekah Simpson called 9-1-1 when her mother collapsed in the family’s back yard.  You can listen to Rebekah’s call here.  (Moms, get ready for waterworks).

This story was a good reminder for me to refresh my daughter’s memory about 9-1-1 and how to use it.  I haven’t taught this to my 3 year old son yet, but think now is as good of a time as any.  I did a bit of research and would like to share some tips on how to teach the use of 9-1-1 to your kids. Read more…

Absurd Vancouver Property of the Week (August 17th, 2012)

Happy Friday!!  The sun is hot in Vancouver today.  Soak it up while you can because we all know grey skies and rain are right around the corner.  Depressed yet?  No?  How about some property comparisons?

First up is the home of Ms. Dakota Fanning of Twilight fame.

Read more…

Afraid to tell your boss you are pregnant? Maybe your fear isn’t totally unfounded.

Yesterday, I participated in a radio panel discussing  “The Challenges of Maternity Leave” on CBC.  The conversation was sparked by a recent case where a Vancouver woman was fired from her job the day after she had told her employer she was pregnant.  Aside from the obvious poor judgement of this employer, our discussion was more around what challenges women face, career-wise, once they decide to start a family.

There is an age old debate about whether we, as women, can actually “have it all”.  We see women in high-power positions being both praised and judged for their decisions around maternity leaves.  A good example of this is Marissa Mayer, who was recently hired as CEO of Yahoo!.  She recently made headlines (in the Style section of many publications…which is a discussion unto itself) when she announced her pregnancy.  So what?  She’s a woman and she’s pregnant.  Who cares?  Well, it seems this is newsworthy…particularly because Marissa publicly stated that, although she would be bringing a child into the world, it would be business as usual at Yahoo!.  She plans on taking minimal leave, 3 weeks spefically, which she will “work right through”.  Some women applauded her choice, after all, it is her decision (a privilege that women have fought for in the workforce).   Other women criticized Mayer and questioned what kind of mother she would be if she didn’t even take the time to bond with her child in the first few weeks of his or her life. Read more…

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