May 18th, 2017

Emergency Preparedness 101: How to Build a Basic Emergency Kit

If an emergency situation developed quickly, would you know what to do? In the event of flooding, a natural disaster, or an earthquake, it’s important to be prepared. Experts agree that you need to be prepared to survive for 72 hours with the possibility of having no water or power.

Key things to have in your emergency kit are:

  1. Water – estimate four litres per person per day for drinking and sanitation.
  2. Food – gather food that won’t spoil such as canned goods, protein energy bars, dried fruits, and meal replacement beverages. Don’t forget to pack the can opener. Include hard candies, chocolate, and gum in your kit as a lift for your senses.
  3. Essentialsflashlights, extra batteries, candles, matches, garbage bags, a blanket, hand sanitizer, whistle, and a small mirror are all must-haves.
  4. First Aid – ensure your first aid kit is up to date and medications have not expired, include gauze, pads and tape along with an assortment of bandages. Include several pairs of disposable latex gloves, face masks, antibacterial hand wash, and a small pair of scissors.
  5. Battery-powered or a wind-up AM/FM radio to keep updated on current conditions.
  6. Seasonal clothing and footwear along with a dust mask in case of poor air quality.
  7. Entertainment – cards or any other board games. Crossword puzzle or pocket book to keep you occupied while waiting for the power to return.
  8. Additional non-essential but important items include duct tape, Swiss army knife, Kleenex, toilet paper, city map, and recent photographs of loved ones in case of separation.

Prepared emergency kits are available from London Drugs, SOS Emergency Response Technologies, and St. John Ambulance, but you can pack your bag to suit your family’s needs. All of these items should be ideally stored in a conveniently located and durable backpack.

During an emergency, if a London Drugs store is able to remain open, we will offer:

  • PharmacyContact us at Customer Service for the latest information on your local store and for any urgent pharmacy inquiries 1-888-991-2299
  • Charging Stations – we will have charging stations available for your electronic devices
  • Supplies and emergency kits – our staff will be happy to help you find an emergency kit or help you to create your own that fits your needs
  • Batteries and Lighting, Candles – we’re here to help with emergency lighting needs from flashlights, batteries to candles
  • Water – It is always important to have an emergency supply of water at the ready
  • Less Urgent Inquiries –  We’ll field any question at ldonline@londondrugs.com

Emergency preparedness is always a good idea. Educate yourself, your family, and your friends on the potential risks, create a plan, and stay prepared for any situation that might arise. 



May 17th, 2017

The Latest Craze – Fidget Spinners!

Everyone is raving about the latest gadget. Fidget Spinners are the new must-have toy for both adults and kids. Fidget Spinners are available online now at londondrugs.com.

Can’t wait for a delivery? London Drugs we will be hosting 2 4  5 NOW SIX ‘pop-up’ stores May 18 – 21 where you can get your own Fidget Spinner – this weekend!

Locations are:

710 Granville Street
Vancouver

20th and Lonsdale
North Vancouver

West Broadway and Cambie
Vancouver

Guildford Mall
Surrey

Valley Fair Mall
Maple Ridge

Lougheed Hwy and Barnett
Coquitlam Centre

Come on by and join the latest craze!

Not recommended for children under 8.



May 17th, 2017

The Ultimate Spring Wedding Planning Guide

Eliminate the stress of planning for your spring wedding, whether it’s next month or next year. While the dress, cake, venue, and bridal shower might be at the top of your list, it can often be the smaller details that get left to the last minute.

Thankfully, we’ve curated a guide of everything you need to know for this wedding season to ensure your special day runs as smoothly as possible.

Make it Official

Wedding celebration with wedding party

Marriage Licenses

Don’t let the paperwork put a damper on the wedding planning process. Deciding who will officiate the ceremony is the hard part–purchasing your marriage license shouldn’t be. At London Drugs, we’ve made it simple. Just bring your ID to our insurance department and we’ll take care of the rest!

Taxes

Confused about how to alert Canada Revenue Agency of your status as newlywed? Don’t be! Follow these helpful steps, fill out a Marital Status Change Form, and navigate to your CRA account online or on your mobile to check on any tax information and benefit or credit payments.

Look Flawless

Wedding hair on bride with options from London Drugs

Whether you’ve hired a professional to make the whole bridal party glamourous or have enlisted your most savvy friend to the task, there’s no denying how important hair and makeup are on your wedding day. If you’re stumped for ideas, check out the London Drugs Beauty Blog for inspiration and new products to give your look a chic update.

Chignon, Updo, Twist—Oh My!

For brides, figuring out what to do with your hair can be daunting: you’ve got to consider the dress, your current style, and the rest of the bridal party. But have no fear: we’ve done the research for you and found a list of this season’s hottest hair trends, as well as a good primer on the classics. Whatever style you pick, make sure it feels like you!

A major decision may be whether to go with an updo or keep your hair down. While there are many ways a professional can twist and pin your hair into an editorial style, if you’re going the DIY route, one great spring trend for 2017 includes hair accessories with flowers and feathers. Whatever you choose, make sure you can rock it all night with minimal fuss, and—more importantly—that you feel comfortable and beautiful.

Makeup Tips

Professional or not, your makeup will have to withstand the occasional happy tear and hours of mingling and dancing. Before you even get to the colour selection, take the steps to prime your face, use a setting powder over your face products, and finally invest in some heavy-duty setting spray to keep your look fresh and weather-proof throughout the night. A good tip for preventing flashback in photos is to make sure your products contain no SPF.

You can choose from an endless array of makeup looks out there, including romantic or glamourous. If you’re doing your own, get help by following a step-by-step guide.

Record Your Memories

Vintage Canon camera to take photos on your wedding day with LD Photolab

One of the lasting mementos of this important day are the memories you capture on film. If you’re on a budget or love the DIY approach, there are plenty of ways to capture all angles of your wedding without hiring a professional.

If you like the idea of a photobooth with props, or a designated photo backdrop, pick up a Fuji Instax Mini for instant photographs that anyone can use. These can be assembled for the couple in a scrapbook, or kept by the guests as a wedding souvenir.

A classic interactive approach during the reception is to purchase as many disposable cameras as there are tables, and have your guests fill them. Not only will you get a wide variety of angles, different faces, and scenes of the wedding, but you can have the photos developed and assembled into a wedding photobook. Make it a coffee table book, mini, or express book for display. Another option for bridal party souvenirs or for your own home is to make magnets, mugs, ornaments and other gifts of your favourite photographs.

Hassle-Free Honeymoon

Newlywed couple on honeymoon with travel insurance from London Drugs

If you’ve planned on celebrating your marriage after the fact, you may already have a good idea of what your honeymoon entails. But if you’re a last-minute planner, or are waiting for the perfect vacation spot, here are some honeymoon hacks to make it a little easier.

First, make sure you know how much your honeymoon will cost and how you’ll be budgeting. Are you planning a week-long spa getaway, or three-month backpacking adventure? If you’re looking for the best spring honeymoon destinations, consider a city like Charleston, South Carolina to avoid too long a flight, or Jamaica after spring-break has passed. If you prefer something budget-friendly, consider staying in Canada, or an all-inclusive on a beach in Mexico.

Before you book, consider tips on when to find the most affordable airfare for your destination. Finally, understand exactly what you need to pack so you don’t forget any essentials before embarking on your romantic getaway.

And make sure to pick up travel insurance at one of our stores if you plan on leaving the province!

It’s our honour to be a part of your wedding, at any stage. Here’s wishing you a day  filled with family, friends, laughter, and love.  



May 17th, 2017

Sun Exposure

I know, I know, I know: Like most of you, I too wake up some days thinking summer will never arrive in western Canada again.

But smarter people than me assure me that this is wrong: Summer will eventually arrive and when it does, if you’re anything like me, you will rush outside to spend some time bathing in that big, beautiful, hot sun.

So let me play my standard role of parent and warn you all ahead of time that while some time in the sun is necessary for good health – sunshine acting on our skin helps our bodies produce vitamin D which we all very much need – too much sun is clearly linked to poorer health both in the short term which leads to problems such as sunburns and sunstrokes, and especially in the long-term through much higher risks of skin cancer, especially the most serious form known as malignant melanoma.

So here’s the advice that you really need to heed in the coming months: 10-20 minutes of sun exposure several days a week is OK but

  • Try to avoid being out there at the peak-sun times of day
  • Cover yourself and especially your kids with sun-protective clothing while outdoors
  • Wear a hat even if like me, you think that a hat makes you look nerdy: No one really notices, believe me
  • Slather on sunscreen with a SPF of at least 30 (and it’s a very good idea to carry extra tubes in your car, just in case)
  • Don’t forget to protect your eyes – sunlight exposure is said to raise the risk of cataracts
  • And remember that just being outside is linked to better health so a walk in the park in the shade is probably better for you overall than 2 hours spent on the beach.

Check out our full selection of suncare solutions here.

 



May 3rd, 2017

Special Ways to Spend Time with Mom This Mother’s Day

Moms of all sorts deserve a treat (not just this month, but always!). And what better gift is there than a little quality time with her kids? Whether yours likes to rest up or rev it up, go high brow or get down and dirty, we found some of the most interesting experiences for sharing special time with your favourite lady.

Natural Woman

Reconnect with Mom and nature at the same time on an easy-paced walk. The 2017 Meadowlark Festival offers more than 30 educational nature tours over five days across southern British Columbia, from Osoyoos to Summerland. Try the Twin Lakes Wilderness and Watershed Tour for painted turtle spotting and cool aquifer-water refreshment. Avid readers and dabbling writers should bring notebooks along for the Literary Hiker Tour with poet Nancy Holmes and ecology writer Dan Gayton.

For young families or moms with grandchildren, a family tour offers a curiosity-based pace and a guide with lots of patience for lots of questions. This toddler-friendly walk around Barrier Lake an hour west of Calgary seems very realistic: “Walks will be subject to toddler interest . . . maybe we will get distracted by something of interest and just hang around there for the rest of the event!”

To truly test mom and daughter (or son) cooperation, travel by canoe. This Mother’s Day, Wetlands Paddle near Invermere offers an introduction to birding as well.

Zippety-do-dah!

Does your mom go all squirrelly over the winter? Try zipping her through the forest from the perspective of a flying squirrel. There are plenty of safe, fun zipline tours to choose from. Many allow children as young as 6.

Some zipline tours emphasize wildlife and nature like this Bear Zipline tour in Whistler, BC. While others offer more gladiator-style obstacles like this one in Chase, BC (near Kamloops) with its optional adrenaline-raising drop swing.

If your mom likes height but not speed, this non-zip Treetrek tour in Whistler offers spectacular views of the river valley from nine suspension bridges.

Getaway Girl

Those who can split costs with a pack of siblings may like to surprise Mom with a holiday weekend. For family harmony, sign up for the Banff Yoga Festival May 26 to 28. Whether you like your yoga on a mat, hanging from a rope or floating in a canoe, you will find many classes to suit everyone’s personal preference and abilities.

If y’all are more of a down-home bunch, the Cowboy Country Music Weekend (also May 26 to 28) may be just your jamboree. Located between Jasper and Banff at the David Thompson Resort, any family members that aren’t fans will have a quick escape to nature.

All Dressed Up

Some Moms like an occasion to get gussied up. Here are a few cultural events worthy of couture.

Our Canada is Alberta Ballet’s combined celebration of its own 50th year and the Canada 150 Celebration. The unique production is choreographed to the music of folk and country music legend Gordon Lightfoot.

Moms who love big ideas will be delighted with tickets to TEDxYYC on June 23 in Calgary. Other TEDx events throughout May and June are in Grande Prairie, AB and Kelowna and Parksville, BC. Check this interactive map for one nearby.

Whether your mom is a tracksuit or a tiara type, she’ll appreciate the gift of time with her kids–especially when the activity perfectly suits her personality.



May 2nd, 2017

May Book of the Month

The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah
In the quiet village of Carriveau, Vianne Mauriac says good-bye to her husband, Antoine, as he heads for the Front. She doesn’t believe that the Nazis will invade France…but invade they do, in droves of marching soldiers, in caravans of trucks and tanks, in planes that fill the skies and drop bombs upon the innocent. When a German captain requisitions Vianne’s home, she and her daughter must live with the enemy or lose everything. Without food or money or hope, as danger escalates all around them, she is forced to make one impossible choice after another to keep her family alive.
Vianne’s sister, Isabelle, is a rebellious eighteen-year-old, searching for purpose with all the reckless passion of youth. While thousands of Parisians march into the unknown terrors of war, she meets Gaëtan, a partisan who believes the French can fight the Nazis from within France, and she falls in love as only the young can…completely. But when he betrays her, Isabelle joins the Resistance and never looks back, risking her life time and again to save others.
With courage, grace and powerful insight, bestselling author Kristin Hannah captures the epic panorama of World War II and illuminates an intimate part of history seldom seen: the women’s war. The Nightingale tells the stories of two sisters, separated by years and experience, by ideals, passion, and circumstance, each embarking on her own dangerous path toward survival, love and freedom in German-occupied, war-torn France – a heartbreakingly beautiful novel that celebrates the resilience of the human spirit and the durability of women. It is a novel for everyone, a novel of a lifetime.

Reviews
The Nightingale is a story set in France during World War 2. It tells the story of two sisters who while surviving the horrors of Nazi occupation also helped, each in her own way, with the resistance movement. I have read a lot of World War 2 based novels but this was the first that focused on a woman’s role in the war. I would highly recommend this book with the warning that sometimes it’s pretty brutal and hard to imagine that it’s based on what might have actually happened during the war. It’s a book that will stick with me for some time to come. – Review by Carolynn

I’ll be honest, I started reading The Nightingale thinking I would hate it (war-themed novels are not my thing). It’s a story about two estranged sisters, Vianne and Isabelle, who live in France during the Second World War and how they are brought together and put aside their differences in order to survive. As I delved deeper into the story, I found myself immersed and intrigued by the descriptions of 1939 France, the rich culture and the well-developed characters. Each character had so many layers that it made you understand their actions, state of mind and relationships with those around them. As well, there are strong themes of feminism and love conquering hate throughout the novel. It not only gives one a greater appreciation of the hardships women endured in trying times but it also symbolizes the beautiful strength and unbreakable bond of sibling love. – Review by Samantha

Book of the Month
Every month we will be featuring a new book to be showcased in our Book of the Month. Staff members and friends will be reading the book and posting their reviews. We’d love to hear what you thought of these books as well. Post your comments and let us know.

The Nightingale is available at London Drugs along with many other great titles and is on sale for the month of May.



April 24th, 2017

7 Reasons To Love Springtime in Canada

Spring in Western Canada is a welcome change from the snow and sleet of the winter months. The days are longer, the weather is warmer and cities brighten with springtime events and activities. Whether you’ve been looking forward to spending time outdoors or discovering new restaurant patios, this is a season for everyone.

1. Take a hike

Image from Go Live Explore

It comes as no surprise that Western Canada is known for having some of the best hiking trails in the nation. With a milder climate and access to ranges like the Rockies, the arrival of spring on the mountains beckons to many avid hikers and trail runners. Of course, the highest peaks are best avoided without appropriate snow gear, but many mountains are perfect for a springtime climb.

Deep Cove in North Vancouver, B.C. is open year-round, while Mt. Seymour is a popular option in late spring because of its breathtaking snow-capped peaks. In Alberta, skip tourist season and have Johnston Canyon to yourself in Banff, or find a trail in family-friendly Kananaskis.

2. Dine on a patio

Image from @jillian.harris

Many restaurants will open their patio doors for covered outdoor dining even during a chilly day. Patio heaters are usually available year-round, but for those lucky enough to experience a warm streak in their city before summer, the availability of patio dining is the perfect reason to socialize or hold a company event. Always call ahead to make sure patios are available, and make reservations if needed!

Choose the best patios in Vancouver, from most dog-friendly, best brunch spots and prime people-watching. In Kelowna, find patios overlooking sprawling vineyards and waterfront views. Keep your eyes out for these Calgary restaurants as soon as the sun comes out, and don’t miss out on Winnipeg’s top rooftop spots.

3. Train for a race

You may have started training for your next marathon in the fall or winter in preparation for spring, which is prime racing season in Western Canada. Whether it’s a marathon or an obstacle course that’s up your alley, there are dozens of races to choose from.

Assemble a team for Tough Mudder in Whistler, participate in the longest running marathon event in Canada at the Calgary Marathon, get colourful at Color Me Rad in Winnipeg, or qualify for Boston at Gopher Attack in Regina.  

4. Hit a hole-in-one

B.C. golf courses can open as early as February. The Okanagan is a beautiful and popular attraction for golf-lovers, and Vancouver Island is also renown for year-round golf due to it’s mild climate. For the rest of Western Canada, golf season starts mid-April, and it’s best to plan ahead if you’re looking for a sweet vacation spot. Saskatchewan is the perfect place to land a hole in one, and Alberta provides spectacular glacial scenery to accompany your swing.

5. Have a mountain adventure

Image from @courtlynf

You don’t have to be a hiking enthusiast to appreciate a day on the mountain. There are endless activities for everyone in the family that will keep you preoccupied once ski season has ended but your favourite walking trails and lakes are not yet accessible.

If you’re looking for a thrill, take a zipline across the peaks of Grouse Mountain in North Vancouver before tackling the Grouse Grind in the summer. Love heights, but want to bring the kids? The Grouse skyride is popular at all times of the year, and sports gorgeous views of the mountain and city. In Canmore, try your hand at ice climbing before the season ends, and then take a rock climbing course to use your new skills. For a family day or adventurous date, play paintball or sign up for a high ropes course in North Battleford.  

6. Stroll in a garden

Image from @carlymla

Spring is the season where we’re inspired to rejuvenate our gardens and appreciate new blooms. In Canada, we’re also fortunate enough to be surrounded by beautiful public gardens and parks.

Take the day to explore some of the 55 acres of the Butchart Gardens in Victoria, or stop to smell the roses at the Rose Garden in Stanley Park in Vancouver. In Lethbridge, get a taste of Japan at the Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden or explore the botanical garden pyramids in Edmonton at the Muttart Conservatory. See specimens from the 1960s at Patterson Garden Arboretum in Saskatoon, and Assiniboine Park in Winnipeg for its 450 hectares of forest, gardens and conservatory.

7. Escape on a road trip

Image from @bskphoto

For those itching for a quick weekend getaway or spur-of-the-moment day trip, spring is the perfect season to escape from the city. Not too hot and not too cold, many roads are clear of snow and ready to be explored.

Discover a hidden hot spring in B.C., or brave the waves in Tofino — Canada’s surfing capital. Take a long weekend off in Alberta and make the drive from Calgary to Lake Louise for prime camping or luxury accommodations. Set up a yurt in a Manitoba provincial park, or rent a camper and find your way to Prince Albert for historic tours. Be sure to map out your route, and pack sunscreen and snacks for whichever spring adventure you choose.   



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