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.



May 1st, 2017

Why You Need to Recycle Your E-Waste (and how London Drugs can help!)

Earth Day 2017 may be over, but we at London Drugs know that thinking about and acting on behalf of our planet is a vitally important year-long activity. That’s why we accept so many forms of recyclables at our stores, including everything from small appliances and empty bottles to both standard and rechargeable batteries. We even accept styrofoam!

 

There is one type of waste that can be especially damaging to both the environment and to communities around the world: e-waste.

It deserves special attention because, too often, we don’t think of e-waste as being recyclable at all. Or we don’t realize that there are good and not-so-good ways to deal with it.

What is E-Waste?

The first important thing to know is that “e-waste” is not garbage, it’s actually a category of recyclables. The problem is, objects in this category aren’t always disposed of properly. In fact, the UN estimates that only about 14% of e-waste is currently being recycled around the globe.

The category of e-waste includes all electronic appliances, but one of the most hazardous sub-types is computers. This includes PCs, gaming consoles, monitors, televisions, tablets, smartphones, and all other handheld digital devices.

Collectively, items in this category have advanced components inside them, such as microchips and motherboards. Although many of us rarely see these components, it’s important to understand that they are often constructed out of hazardous materials like cadmium, lead, and chromium.

Thankfully, many of the companies that produce these products, including Apple, are working toward a future in which these hazardous materials either won’t be needed or can be entirely obtained from recycled e-waste. But we aren’t there yet.

It’s important for consumers to know about the damage to the environment these products can cause when they are disposed of improperly, and to take responsibility for making sure disposal is done right.

How Dangerous is E-Waste?

Improperly handled or mistakenly thrown out e-waste is currently causing serious damage to the environment worldwide. Over time the dangerous metals and chemicals in e-waste (including in plastic casings) break down in our landfills. From there, these pollutants can enter the soil, the air, and the water in the surrounding area.

Another threat posed by e-waste is to the labourers who handle the products. This is especially true for the vast quantities of e-waste that are frequently shipped to developing nations for processing. Too often, these recycling operations are poorly regulated, leaving workers unfairly exposed to physical harm, illness, and even death.

On top of that, the processes used to isolate the valuable parts of e-waste can be crude and may cause more environmental damage than simply throwing the e-waste into the trash. For example, burning copper wires at low temperatures to remove the plastic coating (a common practice at unregulated recycling operations) releases hazardous chemical compounds into the air.

This is why it is so important not only to recycle your e-waste but to ensure that it is being disposed of responsibly. This is needed for the sake of the planet and for the safety of the labourers involved in the process.

What Can We Do About E-Waste?

Good news! If you live in Western Canada, London Drugs accepts all forms of e-waste for proper recycling. Simply bring your tech recyclables into one of our stores and look for the recycling station.

If you don’t see the recycling kiosk in your local LD store, or aren’t sure quite where to find it, just ask one of our LD Experts or speak to someone at the customer service desk. For certain items, there may be daily limits we will inform you of, but we will always do our best to accommodate your recycling needs.

When you recycle your e-waste at London Drugs you can be sure it will be handled by fully-screened and certified companies and never shipped to substandard processing plants. Another benefit of recycling your e-waste at London Drugs is that we always make sure your personal data is properly deleted. In some cases, we may even offer your used electronics a second life by providing them to those in need.

Go the extra mile for the environment and participate in our computer packaging re-use system called Bring Back The Pack. We’re thrilled to have partnered with Certified Data to bring you this program that enables re-use of brand new computer packaging.

Don’t live near a London Drugs? Don’t worry.

There are other ways to safely dispose of e-waste in Canada. The first place to check is with your local recycling depot, but The Salvation Army also typically accepts e-waste.

And remember, whatever you do, the most important step you can take to avoid contributing to the e-waste problem is to never put your electronics into the garbage.

Have more questions about e-waste recycling? You can always ask an LD Expert in-store.

And we encourage you to learn more about our recycling program at GreenDeal.ca.



April 27th, 2017

10 Must-Visit Destinations in Beautiful Canada

We’re all aware of the natural beauty in Canada–it’s everywhere we look. Warmer weather is finally heading our way, along with spring flowers, sunshine, and finally putting the winter boots away! It’s the perfect time to take advantage of free entry to all National Parks for 2017, and make sure this year you really appreciate all that our beautiful country has to offer.

Let these stunning destinations in Canada tickle your travel fancy and offer you a much-needed dose of inspiration.

1. Tulip Festival in Abbotsford, BC 

Until May 7, traipse through the fields of flowers at Abbotsford’s annual Tulip Festival. It’s full of colour and fresh air, with the mountains in the background–make sure your phone is charged so you can post a bunch of photos of this Instagram-worthy destination!

2. Hoodoo Trail in Drumheller, AB

Make your way to the Alberta badlands to see the famous hoodoos. Hoodoos are a natural wonder, taking millions of years to form. Try a guided hike through the trail and remember, no climbing!

3. Dark Sky Preserve in Grasslands National Park, SK

Catch a brilliant view of the Milky Way in a place undisturbed by light pollution. This Dark Sky Preserve in Saskatchewan covers 527 square kilometres, making it one of the largest and darkest in the world.

4. Emperor Falls in Mount Robson Provincial Park, AB

Hike the Berg Lake trail, a world-renowned backcountry trail, and find yourself face-to-face with the 150-foot Emperor Falls. The thundering natural feature will leave you utterly breathless.

5. Manzanita Hut on the Sunshine Coast, BC

Find this hidden sanctuary along the Gwendoline Hills Trail in beautiful British Columbia. Stop at the Manzanita Hut for a picnic lunch surrounded by manzanita bushes and arbutus trees.

6. Sandcastles in Beechy, SK

If you thought Saskatchewan was all flat, think again! Visit this private pasture (the owner allows entry) and set your sights on the large natural Beechy Sandcastles, formed from the collapse of a natural gas pocket.

7. Skalsh Rock in Vancouver, BC

The legendary Skalsh Rock sits beside the sun-filled seawall in Vancouver’s Stanley Park. You’ll want to admire this iconic spot and learn about its history with the Indigenous Squamish people.

8. Hot Springs Cove in Tofino, BC

Relax in this remote geothermal hot springs located in Maquinna Provincial Park. You’ll take a water-taxi or float plane from Tofino to reach this destination nestled along the west coast.

9. Pisew Falls Provincial Park in Thompson, MB

This Manitoba waterfall was created from geological activity causing a rift in the landscape. Because of the continuous flow of water, Pisew Falls has its own micro-climate in its localized area. Be on the lookout for ferns dating back to the Ice Age!

10. Clear Lake in Riding Mountain National Park, MB

Go on a camping adventure in Riding Mountain National Park, with 3000 km2 of rugged nature to explore. Or, walk the shores of Clear Lake if you’re looking for more hustle and bustle.



April 25th, 2017

Floppy Boots Got You Down? We Take Care of That.

Are your winter boots flopping over and making a mess in your closet? Here’s a quick solution to get rid of #bootflop for good!

If you want to clean up your closet, and take good care of your boots over the spring and summer months, have no fear! You can end #bootflop forever with this quick and fun trick that uses an old pool noodle–we know you have one somewhere!

  1. Grab an old pool noodle.
  2. Measure and rough cut to the boot height.
  3. Place inside your boots and zip up!

It’s as easy as that. The pool noodle will keep your boots upright, so you can organize them in your closet without wasting any valuable space. Then, when winter rolls around again, they’ll be ready to put on and go!

LD Solutions offers solutions to everyday problems. You trust London Drugs for your tech, pharmacy, cosmetics, insurance, photography, and more–we help solve your everyday problems.

We hope you enjoy these other tips and life hacks, too!



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.   



April 20th, 2017

Bring Back the Pack with Certified Data

London Drugs and Certified Data want you to Bring Back The Pack! As part of our What’s the Green Deal program you can already bring back the packaging from almost anything you purchase from London Drugs. Computers, Televisions, Appliances, Printers, you name it. Bring it back to your local London Drugs and we’ll make sure that it gets handled responsibly, and that includes Styrofoam!

Certified Data has a special offer for everyone buying our desktop computers.

If you bring back the pack from a Certified Data desktop computer in reusable condition we will give you a $10 gift card! The packaging must be in clean, reusable condition. That means no damage and no writing or any other defacements on the box, but as long as it meets that criteria a $10 gift card is yours!

Not only do you get a $10 gift card, you get the satisfaction of knowing that the box you returned will be re-used to protect another Certified Data computer!

This promotion is on now so if you have a Certified Data box in good condition, bring it back to your local London Drugs and be a part of the Green Deal!

Learn more about our Bring Back the Pack! Program and Certified Data towers from these two youtube videos:

Bring Back the Pack

Certified Data Desktops



April 18th, 2017

2 DIY Disposable Camera Projects You Need to Try

Looking for a fun way to document your next vacation? Ditch your digital camera for a disposable one and get crafty with photo prints.


It can be tough to escape our screens, even on vacation. Ditching your digital camera for a disposable camera is a great way to capture your trip sans screen, and the rush of developing your photos once you’ve returned home will help alleviate any post-vacation blues. What the printed product lacks in pixels, it makes up for in a tangible home for your precious memories.

All packed? It’s time to take some snaps with your single use camera!

During your vacation…

Choose a daily photographer

Each day of your trip, assign someone the role of official photographer for your group and a set number of photos to take before the sun goes down. Whether you’re traveling with kids, family, or friends, a variety of viewpoints will make for a fun final product.

Add a pop of colour

Shoot your pictures through tinted sunglasses, coloured glass, or even a pair of pantyhose! For a less dramatic effect, hold a candy wrapper or piece of cellophane in front of the flash and achieve a technicolour tint. Most importantly, have fun and make sure to capture everything you find cool, compelling, or quirky about the trip. The more bizarre, the better!

Once you’ve returned home…

Create a DIY floating photo wall

Looking for an easy way to turn your photos into a gorgeous mobile display? All you need is a hole punch, some string, and a long, slim stick.

1. Start by punching two holes in each picture—one in the centre of the photo near the top, and one at the centre of the photo near the bottom.

2. Cut several segments of string, between 4 and 5 feet long and tie them along the length of the stick. Leave a hands’ length or more between each piece.

3. Once the string is secured to the stick, take a strand and thread the end through the top hole punch of any picture. Shimmy the picture to the top of the string and secure it there with a knot.

4. Then, bring the string around the back of the picture and thread it through the bottom hole punch. Secure the bottom of the photo to the string with another knot.

5. Pick another photo from the pile and repeat steps two and three, attaching your next photo to the string right below the first photo. Two photos down!

6. Continue to attach photos along the length of the string until you hit the end, then move on to the next strand.

7. Once each strand is loaded with photos, you’re ready to put your pièce-de-résistance on display. Cut another length of string and tie each end to an end of the stick. Use this string to hang your floating photo hanger from a nail or hook in the wall for all to see.

Create your own framed collage

Think collages are a kitschy kindergartener craft? Think again! A framed photo collage can be an upscale way to display your favourite photos. For this project, you’ll need a large picture frame, a tube of glue, scissors, a pencil, and a piece of white poster board.

1. Start by cutting the poster board to fit the picture frame.

2. Then, decide on the shape your collage will take—something with a simple silhouette like a heart, martini glass, or palm tree is perfect. Can’t think of a shape? A short word or date is equally eye-catching!

3. Sketch the outline of your shape on the white poster board then fill it in with your printed pictures. For the best results, cut your pictures to fit the shape of the collage—round edges, trim corners, cut pictures in two. It’s up to you!

4. Once you’ve figured out the perfect placement for each picture, glue them in place. Lay the poster board down on a flat surface, and let it dry overnight.

5. In the morning, pop it into the picture frame and mount it on a wall. Your personalized collage will serve as a reminder of your vacation every time you walk by.

Heading on a trip? Swing by London Drugs and grab a disposable camera. We’ll be happy to print your pictures once you get home!



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