Proudly Canadian Christmas Gift Guide

Looking for gifts with a Canadian flavor this Christmas? Whether Canadian Designed, Canadian Owned or Canadian Proud, these brands and products let you shop with a genuine Canuck connection. So tighten your toque, grab some loonies and check them out. And remember, London Drugs is 100% Canadian Owned since 1945, with our head office right here in Richmond, BC.

Annabelle Cosmetics

Created in 1967 in Montreal, Annabelle Cosmetics develops colourful and cosmopolitan beauty essentials that support a kaleidoscope of cultural diversity, and a vibrant, visionary celebration of humanity.

Pictured: Annabelle Christmas Bag Makeup Gift Set – 5 piece- $19.99

Province Apothecary

Province Apothecary is blending the wilds of Canada into nourishing and balancing skincare. All products are made with the highest quality certified organic ingredients and local ingredients that have been sourced from each Canadian Province.

Pictured: Province Apothecary Balm Trio – $45

Kerr’s Candies

Founded in 1895 in St. Thomas, Ontario by brothers Edward and Albert Kerr after emigrating from Scotland. Today, Kerr’s products are still manufactured at their head office in Toronto in a factory that’s peanut free, tree-nut free and gluten free. Sweet.

Zazubean Chocolate

Started on a pedal-powered excursion by a group of women to an island off the coast of British Columbia, Canada. These fairly traded, organic chocolate bars are good for the planet, good for the growers and tasty for you!

Delecto Chocolates

Made in Canada by Ganong, Canada’s oldest chocolate and candy company, established in 1873, in St. Stephen New Brunswick.

London Naturals Maple Syrup

This 100% Canadian organic maple syrup is made in Canada and brought to you by a 100% Canadian company – London Drugs. Choose from Canada Grade A Amber or Dark.

Sparkmouth Beverages

Non-GMO sparkling beverages flavoured with natural fruit extracts, from a Vancouver, BC Company.

Ethical Bean Coffee & Salt Spring Coffee

Two great organic companies, roasting coffee locally and buying it right globally. Ethical Bean practices promote ecological balance, biodiversity, and community support. Salt Spring Coffee is still owned and operated by the same Canadian husband and wife team.

Lise Watier Cosmetics

Founded in Quebec in 1972. Lise Watier was one of the first women to establish herself in the Canadian cosmetics industry and built a major brand. Lise Watier is now part of the Canadian owned Groupe Marcelle.

Pictured: Lise Watier Must-haves Set – 5 Piece – $44

Roots

Choose from camera bags, cases and carry-alls designed by an iconic Canadian company with its early beginnings in a small cabin in Canada’s Algonquin Park.

Pictured: Roots 73 Classic Messenger Bag – $139.99

Zoe Pet Food

Don’t forget our four footed Canadian friends at Christmas time. This 100% Canadian owned company makes 100% of their dry pet food in Canada with an average of 80% Canadian sourced ingredients.

Starfrit

A wide range of quality Canadian designed kitchenware, brought to you by Atlantic Promotions, a Quebec owned and operated company for over 50 years.

Pictured: Starfrit Maple Cutting Board – $19.99, Starfrit

Mightigrip Jar Opener – $19.99

Trudeau Corp

A Canadian company offering kitchen utensils and accessories to Canada and the world, based in Boucherville, Quebec.

Pictured: Trudeau Pepper Mill – Natural Wood – $19.99

Trudeau Filter Press Coffeemaker – $25.99

Charisma Sterling Silver Jewelry

Made by a Canadian company, designed in Montreal.

Pictured: Charisma Sterling Silver Tree Life Earrings – $25

Salt Spring Island Candles

Salt Spring Island Candle Co. was born from a desire to make clean burning plant based candles while utilizing the best aromatherapy oils to create truly unique scents inspired from Canada’s West Coast.

C&C Candle Company

Hand-poured, 100% soy candles made in

Calgary.

Safari Action Camera

Innovative cameras designed, marketed and sold exclusively in Canada. Part of Gentec, a trusted Canadian company for over 30 years.

Pictured: Safari 5D Action Camera Kit –$99.99

Logiix Accessories

Canadian designed tech products designed in

Vancouver.

Pictured: Logiix Essentials Play Notebook Sleeve – 13 Inch – Sloth – $34.99

Visit Local Central

The Local Central section in select stores continues to offer a fresh selection of hyper-local products, such as Kip’s Kettle Corn, Bear Bait Honey, Harry Beard Oil, True Heroes Coffee and more. Check our Local Central listings to see what’s available in your area!

Canadian Content

Browse our CDs, DVDs and Vinyl Records for Canadian Classics like The Tragically Hip. Neil Young, Rush, Diana Krall and of course, CBC’s The Vinyl Cafe.

Proudly Canadian Brand Stories – Sprague Foods

Sprague Foods. Made in Canada since 1925.

In 1925, J. Grant Sprague built his first cannery in the village of Mountain View, Ontario, naming it J.G. Sprague & Sons Canning Co. They have been canning in the Prince Edward County region ever since. During the 1920’s and 30’s, canned goods from the Mountain View plant were shipped via boat from Belleville and Picton to Montreal, Toronto, and even Western Canada. In 2009, Rick Sprague, Grant’s great-grandson, became Sprague Foods’ fourth generation president. Rick has steered the business toward a focus on healthy foods with natural ingredients.

London Drugs is proud to carry a delicious range of Sprague Organic Soups, including Organic Tuscany Minestrone, Organic Lentil & Vegetable, Organic Tomato Red Pepper and Organic Sweet Potato Curry.

 

All Sprague products are pressure-cooked for preservation in 100% BPA-free packaging, and their organic certified products contain no preservatives.

“Having been around for so long as a canner, we know from experience that Canadian farmers grow the best organic crops on the planet,” says Rick Sprague, “This is why we only use 100% Canadian-grown organic beans and lentils in our delicious pantry-friendly organic soups. Grown in Canada, canned in Canada, for Canadians. And future Canadians, too!”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Proudly Canadian Brand Stories – Silver Hills

For a real Canadian treat, check out this Silver Hills plant-based Bacon Grilled Cheese Recipe.

From an idea sprouted in Lumby, BC, Silver Hills Bread is now a Canadian classic from coast to coast.

When Silver Hills co-founder Brad Brousson was a boy, his mom baked bread with sprouted whole grains from a family recipe. Years later, Brad was attending a health retreat at the Silver Hills Guesthouse in Lumby, BC, and decided he should bake some for the other guests there. This quickly expanded into a full-time project, so Brad partnered with friends Stan and Kathy Smith, and Silver Hills Sprouted Bakery was born.

 

 

“Thirty years ago, if you were organic, you were a bit crazy,” says Stan Smith. “But now there’s a lot of people who are crazy along with us. I think the healthy food community is looking for companies to provide new ideas and solutions and we look forward to being part of that and to discovering ways to make it easier to eat healthy.”

The health difference begins with the sprout. This early growth of the plant unlocks iron, magnesium, zinc, B vitamins, and other important vitamins and minerals, and makes the seeds easier to digest. Sprouted whole grains also offer a healthy, slow-release carb to give your body steady energy.

 

 

All of Silver Hills’ 100% plant-based products are made with nutrient-rich, high-fibre whole grains sprouted in clean, cold Canadian water. Each ingredient is guaranteed non-GMO.

 

Silver Hills Bakery soon outgrew its humble home in the North Okanagan and moved the entire sprouted bakery to Abbotsford in 2002. They’ve been a Proudly Canadian part of the community ever since, and London Drugs is proud to feature their breads across Western Canada.

“When we began the bakery, the sole intent was to aid people in their quest for health,” reflects Brad. “It makes me feel very fulfilled to know that all of the effort and all of the sacrifice that went into making Silver Hills what it is today is really contributing to someone’s happiness, and someone’s health.”

 

 

8 Places to See Beautiful Christmas Lights in Canada

There’s something truly magical about Christmas lights during the holidays. Thousands of twinkling lights can make any place feel like you’re walking in a winter wonderland. We’ve rounded up eight of our favourite spots in Canada to take in Christmas light shows, tunnels, and even a train.

1. Grouse Mountain

Christmas lights Grouse Mountain Beautiful Canada - London Drugs

Photo by @vancitywild

After taking the gondola up Grouse Mountain in Vancouver, BC, walk through a tunnel of lights before skating and grabbing hot cocoa. Tip: it’s a great holiday date spot!

2. VanDusen Botanical Garden

Walk among the maze of Christmas lights at VanDusen Botanical Garden in Vancouver, BC. For many it’s a yearly tradition to see the Festival of Lights!

3. CP Holiday Train

CP Holiday Train London Drugs

The CP Holiday Train is travelling from province to province collecting donations for North America’s food banks. Find out when the train is coming to a town near you – and see a live holiday show!

4. Leduc County Christmas Lights

Walking in a Christmas wonderland at Leduc County Christmas Lights in Alberta! Remember to bring a donation for the food bank and snap a great picture with these twinkling lights.

5. Vancouver Christmas Market

Stand inside a giant Christmas tree at the Vancouver Christmas Market! Reflective of a traditional German market, shop for classic treats, visit local vendors with handmade goodies, and ride the merry-go-round.

6. Bankers Hall

Bankers Hall Calgary - London Drugs Blog

Photo by @aliyahkm

With a huge Christmas tree surrounded by lights, put Bankers Hall in Calgary on your to-visit list for a picture-worthy moment!

7. Prince’s Island Park

Prince's Island Park Calgary - London Drugs Blog

Photo by @anaib

Walk over to Prince’s Island Park near downtown Calgary, AB, for a bridge full of lights and festive Christmas cheer.

8. Capilano Suspension Bridge Park

Capilano Suspension Bridge - London Drugs Blog

Photo by @vancitywild

All lit up for Christmas, the Canyon Lights at the Capilano Suspension Bridge Park are beautiful over the holidays. It gets busy though, so go early or on weeknights if you can!

Did we miss somewhere? Tell us in the comments! Merry Christmas from all of us at London Drugs!

5 More Canadian Photographers to Follow on Instagram

We <3 Canadian photographers! We’ve just climbed out of another Instagram rabbit hole, and we wanted to show some love to a few of our newest favourite Canadian shutterbugs.

Sonika Arora – @sonikaarora604

Sonika is a Vancouver-based photographer who specializes in cityscapes and landscapes. Her work is dreamy and moody, and beautifully captures the stunning vistas of Vancouver, rain or shine. Be sure to check out her Stories – she’s already made wallpaper for your smartphone for you!

https://www.instagram.com/p/BgfRSaPn1IR/?taken-by=sonikaarora604

Colleen Gara – @colleengaraphoto

Living in the city, we sometimes forget about the wild side of Canada. Colleen Gara is here to remind us that most of this great country is covered in wilderness, inhabited only by the colourful characters she captures on camera.

 

Ryan Holder – @lordryerye

Ryan is an Englishman living in Canada, and shows his appreciation for his new home by blessing us with his gorgeous landscape and nature photos. Who needs postcards when you have talent like this?

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bi10u0IlHSz/?utm_source=ig_share_sheet&igshid=ci2xpbmqvlt1

Sameer Ahmed – @sameer.design

Edmonton is a fantastic city – great food, vibrant nightlife, diverse arts scene –  but “beautiful” might not be the  first word that comes to mind when you think of the City of Champions. Don’t try to tell that to Sameer Ahmed – Edmonton is breathtaking through his lens.

 

Tamarah Hodgson – @tamarah_leanne

Yes, it’s undeniable that Canada has gorgeous landscapes and cityscapes. Saskatoon photographer Tamarah Hodgson instead focuses her lens on the beautiful people of the Great White North. As one half of Meraki + Light, she captures weddings, engagements and other family events, and her personal Insta feed is full of quiet, intimate beauty from the smaller moments of her own life.

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bk217nKAotP/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link

https://www.instagram.com/p/BmMRzdFguPx/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link

https://www.instagram.com/p/BcViLtYFk-R/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link


Do you have a favourite Canadian photographer that we missed? Post a link to their Instagram profile in the comments!

7 Beautiful Signs That Spring Is Just Around the Corner in Canada

Since it’s technically still winter, we may be jumping the gun here in Canada, but the the thought of Spring is too exciting not to talk about. There aren’t many other things that thrill Canadians more than seeing the first few signs of warmer weather: the old, grey piles of snow in Calgary transforming into ankle-deep puddles, the first sights of the new potholes blooming in Saskatoon, any temperature that doesn’t have a minus in front of it in Winnipeg, or one day, just one day, that it doesn’t rain in Vancouver are all welcome signs that spring is near, and we can put another Canadian winter under our belts. Here are 7 Signs that spring is juuuuuust around the corner.

Buds

These little friends are usually the first signs of spring Canadians will see. Of course, the second thing they’ll see is fellow Canadians running around exclaiming, “BUDS ON THE TREES! BUDS ON THE TREES!”

Robins

Robins know when things are starting to thaw out, so when they show up in your backyard, it’s a good sign that your extremities are about to get warmer.

Sun

Photo courtesy of Banff Lake Louise Tourism

It’s a unique experience to play a bit of pond hockey with the warm sun on your face. In the above photo, the Banff Women’s Hockey team are here taking full advantage at the Fairmont Banff Springs hotel.

Blooms

Crocuses are usually the first buds to poke their little heads out of the cold, Canadian ground, and we’ve made early Crocus spotting a competitive spring sport.

Geese

The comforting honk of these feathered friends making their way back to our lakes and ponds are a welcome sound in the ears of chilly, damp Canadians.

Patios

This patio at Canim Lake, BC isn’t quite ready for lounging on yet, but you know as soon as the temperature gets anywhere around 5 degrees, it will get dusted off and put to good use.

Spring Skiing

Is there any better feeling than skiing with no jacket? No. No there is not. Check out this daring canuck flipping for spring in Whistler, BC.

 

How excited are you about spring? Tell us, or even better yet show us, in the comments!

5 Reasons Curling is Awesome (and So Canadian!)

Haaaaaaaaaaaaard! If the games in PyeongChang have re-awakened your interest in curling, you aren’t alone. Curling clubs see membership increase every four years, as wider audiences are exposed to the drama and fun of this very Canadian sport.

Curling was invented in Scotland, but long, cold Canadian winters have driven generations of Canadians into curling clubs where community is built with every end played. Here are 7 reasons curling is awesome, and so, so Canadian!

1. Anyone Can Curl

Certainly at the elite level, curlers are in top shape. The fields at the Scotties Tournament of Hearts (Women’s Canadian Championship) and the Brier (Men’s Canadian Championship) train like crazy and are incredibly fit and strong athletes, but this may not always be the case down at your local club. Wonderfully, curling is a sport that players of all ages and fitness levels can succeed at. This inclusivity is a Canadian ideal, and we’re incredibly proud of it.

2. Curlers are Mild-Mannered

Canadians don’t love the stereotype that we’re all too polite (sorry!), but in curling, it’s kind of true. The way curlers talk about the game with each other, even at the highest level, in the most intense situations, is as if they’re two buddies deciding whether or not to go for Italian or Vietnamese food tonight. One curler will mildly express an opinion on the type of shot to take: “Let’s do an in-turn tap to the four foot.” The other curler’s response? “I don’t mind that.” You must understand that “I don’t mind that” is curler-speak for: “This is the best idea I have ever heard and if you do it we’re going to win the Canadian championship.” It’s utterly refreshing to watch nice people play sports with respect for each other. And it’s so Canadian.

3. Curling is Chess on Ice

The strategy involved in a curling game is fascinating. Shots that are made at the beginning of a 16-rock end often come into play in the very last shot, and the great curlers are the ones who manage the house and their rocks throughout. What makes it fun for the viewer is that we get to hear everything the teams are discussing as they weigh their options. The commentators play a huge role in translating the curling jargon for the home viewer, and as you learn the basics, you will start to see the different strategies paying off for the teams. The mental focus and planning that great skips need to bring their teams to victory is something to behold.

4. Curlers Make Crazy Shots

Along with the thoughtful strategy in a curling game, you’ll also get to see some big weight shots that get 3, 4, or more rocks scattering around the house. Check out Glenn Howard’s shot for 3 at the 2009 Brier. Or this one from Jennifer Jones, simply called “The Shot,” to win it all the 2005 Scotties Tournament of Hearts. Or here is a compilation of 10 great shots from the Canadian Curling Trials in 2010. Totally crazy shot-making from the best in the world, who just happen to be Canadian.

5. Curling Creates Community

Life in Canada can be tough in the winter months. It’s no wonder that people in towns across the country take to their community curling clubs for some shelter from the elements and good times with friends and neighbours. Camaraderie is baked into the sport, with players wishing each other good luck or “good curling” before the game and usually sharing a table up in the clubhouse after the game as well. These clubhouses also capture the spirit and history of the curlers and community members that have come before, through memorabilia, photographs, and stories. Drop into a curling club for a glimpse at the people who have made their Canadian community what it is today.

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