Summer is officially here, and if you live in B.C. you will be enjoying some blissful hot, rainless, blue sky days. Ice cream is one of my favourite treats for any time, but it tastes even better enjoyed outside in the sun – pure summer.
One of our favourite places to get a cool cone is at Edaleen Dairy, just a quick zip over the border into Washington you can enjoy two scoops for $1.89. You also can't go wrong visiting La Casa Gelato in Vancouver – over 218 flavours – including oddities like blue cheese, fennel and malt vinegar.
If you're Alberta folk, make sure you indulge at Village Ice Cream in Calgary – probably the best cone I've ever had. Their salted caramel makes me weak in the knees, and their coffee ice cream uses Phil and Sebastian beans and brew – win. For the Reddeerians out there, be sure to track down Peppermint Andy's Ice Cream Wagon this summer. The wagon is often parked at the Wednesday Downtown Market and Food Truck Fridays, located at Cool Beans Bus.
What is YOUR favourite summer ice cream spot?
You can download this summery ice cream desktop wallpaper here.
When it is over +30 and humid, there are only a few things that you really want to do. To get out of our sweaty house, Tylor and I took some friends to visit what is becoming one of our favourite hangouts – The Fort Winery. Nestled in the beautiful Glen Valley area, the windy rural drive to the winery is a treat in itself. Founded in 2001 by a tugboat captain and a cranberry farmer, The Fort was born. The winery boasts a shaded green outdoor seating area, beautiful tasting room and places to enjoy picnics in the sun.
This place has changed our minds about fruit wine. You won't find "juicy" wine here. Their wines are grape-free, they are different, and they are excellent. The cranberry wines are our favourite, which seems fitting as there is a cranberry patch on the same land.
After a tasting we settled in on the patio with our packed picnic and a pitcher of sangria to share. It was crisp, refreshing and not too sweet. A perfect way to deal with the heat.
Thanks to Hannah, Tatiana and Tirz for spending the afternoon at The Fort with us and thanks to the awesome staff for serving us so well, as they always do :)
The Fort Winery is located in Glen Valley, 5 km east of Fort Langley village at 26151 - 84 Avenue, Langley, BC. You can learn more about them at thefortwineco.com.
There comes a point in your life when you feel you're ready for the next big thing. You get married, you figure your life out a little bit, then... what next? Babies? Not yet. But working from a home office, the house seems awfully quiet and in need of some life during the day. I've been begging my husband Tylor for a dog for a few weeks now. It just seems like the next step – and a good one at that. Having a fuzzy bundle to accompany me on walks would be a joy. Having another life in the house would be awesome, and yes, I would probably talk to the dog like a human... don't judge me.
Dog owners, is it worth the expense, poop pick-up, time, hassle, and chewed shoes?
You have to agree, our family does look more complete with that fuzzy pup by our side... right? If you have reason to talk me out of this fantasy... do it now :)
What inspires you?
I get asked this question a lot. I also ask myself this question every day. Designers are inspired in many different ways. I think that is just part of being (dare I say it...) a "creative." I am inspired by my surroundings, by where I am at in life and who I consider to be the great designers of our time. The great thing about it is, your brain gets to run wild until you reach a point where you have to gather your thoughts into something that you can represent visually. Bringing your lifestyle into your work offers something that nobody can really replicate. Tonight, I was watching these two robins out my window on the fence. They looked as if they were having a deep conversation, so I rolled with it. Why not?
The internet has so much to offer. An afternoon spent browsing beautiful print design on the web will only do you good. Follow design blogs, read magazines. Soak up design work that you find attractive. Stop using the same two typefaces over and over, and experiment. Your style will be reflected even if you are current (hopefully...). Nobody wants to pay for design work that was trendy 10 years ago. Keep up.
I've been fortunate to have had a lot of creative freedom in my career so far – working alongside others who valued the creative process enough to acknowledge that the best work doesn't always come between 9 am and 5 pm. This is one work value that I hold very high.
Think of Mad Men's Don Draper. Would he be as brilliant creatively if he was restrained? Imagine the quality of his work if he was asked to pump out creative copy 8 hours a day from a cubicle. Not good.
Some of my best ideas will come on a day when I'm not supposed to be working. The idea could have been triggered by finally getting out of the office and sitting at the beach. Answering emails, writing quotes and having client conversations aren't overly inspirational, even though they are part of the job. You need to move from your desk. Even if this means taking a stroll at lunch or walking to a cafe to finish those last few quotes. Go places, soak up culture, eat different food and experience the great things around you. This will be reflected in your work.
Back to the robins. What do you get when you kiss a diseased bird?
I am married to a fellow who loves the outdoors. He thinks, and breathes all things adventuresome and wilderness filled. Camping is one of his favourite activities... ever. He is rather particular when it comes to packing things that work well to ensure the ultimate enjoyable experience in the wilderness. Tylor has helped me compile a list of his top camping essentials. Some are still on his wish-list, but most we have tried and love.
Ladies, if you are with an adventurous man, here are some great gift ideas, for real.
1. Flashlight / E2D LED Defender / www.surefire.com
2. Camping Guide / Camp Free in B.C. by Craig Copeland / www.amazon.ca
3. Rooftop Tent / Locally made in Langley, B.C. / rooftoptent.webs.com
4. Coffee Maker / AeroPress kit / www.aeropress.ca
5. Hand-powered Coffee Grinder / Hario mini mill slim coffee grinder / www.amazon.com
6. Hobo Stove / Hand-made coffee can camp stove / www.practicalsurvivor.com
7. Forest Axe / Gransfors Bruks small forest axe / www.canadianoutdoorequipment.com
I am so much more productive when it rains during the week, so for that, I am thankful. BUT today, I just wanted some sun!
This morning I had intended to do some meal planning, when my hunger mixed with my pen and I started drawing instead. We consume a lot of fruit and veggies in our house. Tylor and I hit the market at least once a week to stock up. We're loving the new area that we live in, which is full of year-round farmers markets, and locally grown goods. We have a few staples that we always get on our grocery runs and are always looking for something new. Has anybody else been a little nutty with kale chips lately? And really, what ISN'T good with avocado?
We picked up some mustard greens today... that's a new one for us. What are some of your fruit and veggie must-haves? And have you been bizarrely surprised with something healthy and new lately?
Yesterday was a good day. We had our very first exhibit at the Chamber's Fraser Valley Business Showcase. All complete with a hand-crafted display, snazzy name-tags, give-aways, and a raffle for $500 creative dollars. We were able to meet new faces, talk with other business owners, and introduce Kayla English Creative to the area for the first time. It was so great to hear feedback on what we're doing, and make some awesome connections in this new (to us) community.
To the lovely design students Lorenza and Oliva from the UFV, it was such a delight to meet you and chat about your aspirations and interest in design and visual communications. I'm hoping we can connect soon!
We'll be announcing the winner of the raffle later tonight – stay tuned via Facebook, and remember to "like" our page!
You can even click right here. I'll make it easy for you :)
Wednesday April 10 we will be exhibiting at the Fraser Valley Chambers of Commerce Business Showcase. We're hoping to expand our network and meet some new faces, as we're still new to the area. We're getting out of our t-shirts and looking forward to an awesome afternoon of networking. Stop by for a hello – and a treat from our booth, all while entering to win a draw for $500 creative dollars to put towards your next project. It's really a win-win.
Here's what you need to know...
WHEN: Wednesday, April 10 from 2:00 - 7:00 pm
WHERE: TRADEX / Trade & Exhibition Centre in Abbotsford, BC
WHY: We're new to BC, we're friendly folks, we can talk about your design for your business or personal project and... we're giving away sweet stuff!
ADMISSION: Zip, zilch, zero. Your admission & appetizers are free. There is also a cash bar.
Need more information? Have a look here.
See you next week. We're pretty excited!
– kayla + tylor
Happily married to a handsome fellow named Tylor, she is a graphic designer, paper lover, hobby crafter, culinary adventurer and an all-round creative enthusiast.