Ania B’s Road to the Junos with London Drugs

Last weekend we were invited to join a group of bloggers to attend the Canadian music awards. We got our first taste for the Junos when they were held in Calgary back in 2016. It was a really great year for Canadian music with performances from the Weekend and Dear Rouge to name a few highlights and it made us hungry for more. To top it off, when the invite comes from one of the event sponsors who also happens to be one of your favourite Canadian brands, you don’t think twice about accepting!

Starting the JUNOs Journey with London Drugs

London Drugs has been part of our journey for many many years now, before the blog even existed, as a destination for all our photo and tech needs. Fun fact: they are one of the few places in all of Canada that still develop film. As a big supporter of Canadian artists, London Drugs has always been one of our top destinations—together and individually for cameras, electronics, and music. I thought it only fitting that the gear we brought with us to the Junos weekend were some of our top essentials we can’t live without while travelling and for experiencing music.

“As a big supporter of Canadian artists, London Drugs has always been one of our top destinations, together, and individually, for cameras, electronics and music.”

 

In-Flight Tech Essentials

The weekend begun with a flight over to Vancouver and since we were already out west it was a quick one hour trip. Of course, no amount of travel is ever complete without a set of headphones—since we’re both on the latest iPhone X, those are always wireless. Over-ear wireless headphones are probably my favourite thing EVER right now. It’s like everything you love about that look without everything you used to dislike about it, i.e. the long cord that always got in your way.

Day One in Vancouver

From the airport we were whisked away to the brand new J.W. Marriott Parq Hotel, conveniently located next door to the arena where the Junos broadcast was going to happen just two days later. Until then we took in local restaurants (hotels own Honey Salt and La Pentola), a standup comedy night at Juno Fest, the Ready Player One activation downtown Vancouver (who went to see it this weekend?!) and even had some time to locate the Tacofino truck parked nearby!

A Platform for Canadian Artists

The Canadian arts are unfortunately cursed by being in such close proximity to the United States and often artists don’t get the credit they deserve because all our attention gets easily redirected to the south of the border. The Junos provide a platform for all Canadian music to find it’s voice and it was a great opportunity to learn more about it, discover the newest and most exciting talent, and reconnect with the ones that we’ve always loved.

“The Junos provide a platform for all Canadian music to find it’s voice and it was a great opportunity to learn more about it, discover the newest and most exciting talent, and reconnect with the ones that we’ve always loved.”

Michael Buble was the host of the evening and the Barenaked Ladies celebrated their induction to the Canadian Hall of Fame by performing their most loved ‘If I had a $1,000,000’ and ‘One Week‘ taking us all the way back to the best of the 90s! We had a chance to walk two red carpets over the course of our visit and experience the live broadcast of the awards themselves, along with being treated like total VIPs with dinners, parties and even a morning yoga session with Lululemon & DJ Felix Cartal (when in Rome)!

Appreciating Canadian Talent

As consumers of popular culture, it should be our responsibility to support local artists. Before he was a mega superstar Justin Bieber was also just a kid whose parents recorded YouTube videos in his home in Ontario. Without the support of their communities, artists are just people with creative hobbies. There is an unfortunate catch-22 associated with having to prove yourself outside of your home before getting the recognition you need to make a name for yourself.

As digital creators, we face this all the time—the understanding of how much work, sweat, and tears goes into making your dreams into reality puts things into perspective. We must appreciate the talents we have right here at home and nurture them so they continue providing us with inspiration and bring pride to the country as a whole, and it totally gives us bragging rights when talking about Canada on a global scale!

Lights! Camera! Junos!

Lights! Camera! Access! That was all I could think of when walking down the red carpet at this year’s Junos. Entertainment and news shows lined the walls of the tent as performers and producers answered questions and flaunted their designer looks. It’s always the biggest treat when you get to get an inside look at how our favourite shows are made.

TV is such a fascinating medium and the more I uncover it the more tangible it becomes. Who knows, maybe one day we’ll find ourselves on an all different side of the camera. Tyler was, of course, on camera duty for the whole thing, snapping photos as we made our way through the crowd, even spotting our fave ladies from the London Drugs team reporting live on all the action (you can see the full report on the London Drugs Twitter & Instagram pages).

Thank you to the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) for hosting such an unforgettable weekend and London Drugs for always being our go-to for all things tech and music! xoxo

Our Junos gear: Defunc over ear bluetooth headphones, Marshall bluetooth portable speaker, Logiix battery pack + cable, Canon DSL 5D mark iv camera, iphone X, Sony a7rii camera, all available at LONDON DRUGS

For more of Ania B’s favourite Vancouver hotspots, visit her Vanouver City Guide and the travel category in the main menu.

Blog courtesy of Ania B

10 Photos That Prove Canada is a Snowy Wonderland

As Canadians, we’re no strangers to snow. LOTS of snow. We’ve even just learned that the most snow on the planet is set to fall on British Columbia this month. We may complain about it, but most of us actually love it. Fact: everything just looks more magical when it’s covered in snow. The feeling is hard to put into words, so let’s allow these gorgeous photos of snow from around the country do the talking for us. Here are 10 photos that prove Canada is totally a snowy wonderland.

1. Dream Cottage

Fernie, BC is one of the snowiest places in Canada, so it’s the perfect location for cat-skiing resort Island Lake Lodge. Their cottage is so cozy, it kind of makes us want to just forego the skiing and get snowed in–on purpose.

2. East Coast Cool

The East Coast certainly gets its share of snowfall too, and the already delightful vistas of Prince Edward Island get even more stunning with a fresh load of the cold stuff.

3. Snow Doggo

Snowy Wonderland

Photo by @mywhiskeygirl on Instagram

Snow sports are serious business in Whistler, and no one knows that better than this proud pooch.

 

4. Winter Sunset

If you’re lucky enough to catch the sunset in Canmore, AB, you’ll be treated to this stunning scene. (At 4:30 in the afternoon.)

 

5. Snow Doggo pt. II

Snowy Wonderland

Photo by @soulinesbackcountry on Instagram

Did you think we could just stop at one dog photo? We couldn’t resist this gorgeous husky pup, basking in her element.

6. Why Stop Now?

Snowy Wonderland

Photo by @cherrycheri_ on Twitter

We have two words for you: WINNIPEG. MANITOBA.

 

7. Meanwhile, In Cape Breton…

Snowy Wonderland

Photo by @burkedc on Twitter

Hey Winnipeg, we’ll see your stop sign and raise you…this road.

 

8. Snow Speeder

Snowy Wonderland

Photo by metronews.ca

Nova Scotia could give lessons on how to make the best of a snow storm. Hang on to your hat, little buddy!

 

9. The Freshest Tracks

All skiers know that first tracks in the powder are the holy grail of the season, and Lake Louise is the perfect place for a powder quest.

10. Strike a Pose

We doubt this majestic Alberta elk knows his photo is being taken, so we’ll just assume that he woke up like this.

 

Did we miss your #BeautifulCanada snow photo? Link to it in the comments so we all can ooh and ahhh!

3 Reasons to Preserve Memories in a Photo Book For Your Kids

 

Hi everyone, Amanda here from The Mommy Mix!

Growing up, my family didn’t take a whole lot of road trips. As a child, this didn’t bother me but as I got older and had a family of my own, I started to think how I wanted things to be different for my boys. I wanted to give them more than just memories of us going to the neighborhood pool or local zoo. I wanted them to experience the different places in this beautiful province we call home. This past summer, my husband suggested we take a few mini road trips to some of the provincial parks he visited as a child and I, of course, thought this was a wonderful idea. So, with no plans as to the exact location our road trips would take us, I grabbed my camera, my husband grabbed the fishing gear (just in case), we packed some road trip snacks and away we went.

As soon as our summer started and the road trips began I knew I wanted the boys to have more than just memories in their heads of our 2017 Summer, I wanted to make them Travel Photo Books from the London Drugs Photolab, not just of our road trips but of our experiences. And here’s why:

THEY WILL APPRECIATE IT

Have you ever sat and watched a child look at a Photographic Album? Even children younger than 2 can sit for hours flipping back and forth from page to page; I swear it’s the only time their attention lasts longer than a minute. And when they’re looking at pictures of themselves or someone they know, the look of “ahh” on their little faces is priceless!

REMINISCING WITH FUTURE GENERATIONS

We’ve all been there before, listening to stories our parents use to tell us about their childhood or the fun places they visited and now we do the same with our children. When it’s their turn to be the storytellers, wouldn’t it be nice if they had photos to show your grandchildren or great-grandchildren? Photo Books are the perfect way to keep memories alive for generations to come!

KIDS OFTEN MISS THE BITS AND PIECES

It’s no surprise that the brain works in mysterious and AMAZING ways! When it comes to remembering a time and place, as well as how we felt, there are so many things that can help without having a visual aid; a scent, the feel of someone’s touch, a song playing on the radio… But, how much of our memory is triggered by these things, especially something that we did during our childhood? Do we remember the little things? The smile on someone we love’s face, the way they used to look… As adults we start to understand and appreciate the value of time, soaking everything in for as long as we can. Children tend to rush through life letting it pass them by and not taking any of it in. Choose a Coffeetable Photo Book with a simple style that matches the memories you’re creating and you can store all the bits and pieces away in a keepsake that will last them a lifetime!

With the help of the London Drugs Photolab, I was able to make a Photo Book with a neutral theme for my boys that displayed the fun we had this summer. Not only could I pick the style but I also had the freedom to pick the layout of each individual sheet, which means I had total control of the amount of photos I used and the text I wanted to leave, in case they needed reminding of where our family was and what we were doing. It was so simple… and the best part is when they’re older they’re going to think I spent hours on it, when in reality it took less than 30 minutes.

MORE WAYS TO PRESERVE WHAT THEY LOVE AS CHILDREN

While we’re talking about the sentimental reasons you should create photo books for your kids, a Recipe Book with their favourites is also a good idea. Let them know in the recipe book how you made their favourite pasta dish or what you put in those muffins that made them taste so good, so they’re prepared to make them when they leave the nest. How else will they know that the secret ingredient for moms is always love?!

For more ways to preserve memories for your kids, check out all the items at the London Drugs Photolab. You can order your very own personalized photo books online, at their in-store kiosks, or even using their London Drugs Photolab App (now available for both iOS and Android!).

 

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 @_amohamed

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 is 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.

10 Places to See Fall Colours in Beautiful Canada

There is something particularly special about the fall season in beautiful Canada. Among our alpine lakes, sky-high mountains, lush forests, and crisp true north air, you can find autumn colours in so many parts of this grand country. So whether you’re heading out on a hike before the snow settles in, or you’d like to admire the red, orange, and yellow hues on Instagram from the comfort of your home, here are ten places you’ll find fall colours in Canada.

1. Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park

Golden Autumn Day in Canada - London Drugs

Image by @jordanherschel

Head off the grid in Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park, British Columbia, for alpine lakes that reflect the mountains and the changing colours of surrounding trees.

2. The Icefields Parkway

Drive the Icefields Parkway for an endless road lined with autumnal tones of yellow, orange, and dark green.

3. Waterton Lakes National Park

Waterton Lakes National Park - London Drugs Blog

Image by @stevint

Take a walk on the wild side with the scenic Waterton Lakes National Park in Alberta flanked by the Rocky Mountains.

4. Moraine Lake

Moraine Lake - London Drugs Blog

Image by @mblockk

It’s hard to ignore the stunning fall colours glistening on Moraine Lake in Banff National Park, Alberta. How many times have you visited this beautiful place?

5. Lake O’Hara

Lake O'Hara - London Drugs Blog

Image by @kayitscait

Dive into autumn at Lake O’Hara in Yoho National Park, British Columbia. It might be cold, but it’s almost impossible not to take a quick swim while you’re there.

6. Kootenay National Park

Kootenay National Park - London Drugs Blog

Image by @alexstrohl

Witness fall in the Rockies with the sun lighting up all of the autumn tones. Visit the Kootenay National Park in British Columbia to see the incredible punch of yellow for yourself.

7. Cypress Provincial Park

It’s a beautiful sight from Cypress Provincial Park in Vancouver, British Columbia. Catch the North Shore on a crisp sunny day with the leaves turning all colours of red and orange.

8. The Rockies

Rocky Mountains - London Drugs Blog

Image by @jamieout

Muted fall colours of green and yellow framed by the Rocky Mountains shows just how picturesque the change in seasons can be.

9. Larch Valley

Larch Valley - London Drugs Blog

Image by @jfragasso

Have you had the chance to experience Larch Valley in autumn? Head to Banff National Park in Alberta to find the larch trees turning a brilliant yellow before they shed their needles.

10. Mount Taynton

Mount Taynton - London Drugs Blog

Image by @scottcbakken

The road to autumn is in Mount Taynton, British Columbia, between the trees with the mountains in the distance.

See more pictures of #BeautifulCanada on the @londondrugs Instagram, and happy fall!

Tangled Necklaces While Travelling? We Take Care of That.

If you are heading on a trip this year, pack up your makeup and jewelry like a pro. Prevent a tangled mess of necklaces using only a couple of drinking straws, and save yourself the frustration of untangling them all when you arrive at your destination!

  1. Start with an untangled necklace.

  2. Take a regular drinking straw.

  3. Thread each necklace through the straw (or slit the straw and slide the chain in).

  4. For shorter necklaces, cut the straw to length.

  5. Pack them up, and you’re ready to go!

Find all of your travel needs from London Drugs in-store and online, and know that we’ve got you covered with our #LDSolutions videos.


Need other great tips and tricks to make life easier? Check out more of our helpful LD Solutions Videos on YouTube or individually here on the London Drugs Blog:

How to Fix a Cracked Makeup Palette

How to De-Wrinkle a Shirt in a Jiffy

How to Remove a Ring Stuck on Your Finger

How to Easily Remove a Stripped Screw

How to Peel Potatoes without a Peeler

How to Remove Nail Polish from Your Skin

How to Cure Bootflop

How to Make a Heartfelt Gift for a Family Member

How to Deep Clean Your Blender

How to Vitamin-Charge Your Morning Smoothie

How to Clean Your Microwave with a Lemon

Share Your Summer Travel Memories on Instagram…and IRL

Summer is the season of camping trips, beach vacations, hiking adventures and most importantly, making memories. With the extra-long days, there’s time to squeeze in even more outdoor activities. Whether you’re spending your summer being a tourist in your own town, or jet-setting to somewhere entirely new, you’re likely planning to snap a lot of photos along the way. After all, summer is fleeting, and the best way to preserve those memories is with photos.

Of course, part of preserving those memories is sharing them. We snap hundreds of photos while on vacation, but how many of them never end up seeing the light of day? Some of them get posted online to Facebook or Instagram, but there are plenty more that end up sitting on memory cards and hard drives unseen. Make the most out of your photos by printing them. There are endless ways to showcase your summer travels, from square Instagram Books and Book-Its, to photo DIYs if you’re feeling crafty.

 

Book-It Mini Books

Your photos tell a story of where you’ve been, what you’ve experienced, and what you’ve learned. It may feel bittersweet to arrive home after an incredible vacation, but it’s always fun to relive the best moments while journaling your trip in a photo book, like the 6×4 Book-It Mini Book. Pick a colourful, graphical theme and customize the layout and text to tell your story.

Instagram Books

Instagrammers rejoice, even your square photos can be turned into a photo book. Compile your Instagram-worthy shots into a 4×4 square Instagram photo book that’s wire-bound and printed on quality glossy or pearl photo paper. When family or friends ask how your summer vacation was, you can pull out your handy brag book to show them all the awesome places you explored this summer.

 

Photo Print DIYs

Start off with some good old 4×6 photo prints, and let your creativity do the rest! Collect ticket stubs and other small souvenirs throughout the summer, and use your photo prints to create a fun collage. Or make a Summer 2017 timeline to hang on the wall: pick a photo of each summer excursion, and use wooden pegs to hang them chronologically along a string.

If a traditional photo album is more your style, add your printed photos to a Pioneer Canada 150 Photo Album to showcase your favourite moments from #Canada150.

 

Don’t forget: great prints start with a great camera. If you have a vacation planned for later this summer, plan ahead and upgrade your camera so you can capture your summer memories in the best quality possible. It might be a matter of upgrading your smartphone, point-and-shoot or DSLR, or even switching up your camera’s lens to something new. You’ll appreciate the boost in quality when you go to print your photos!

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