Friday, April 19, 2013

Girl Power in Richmond: Roller Derby

What I knew about roller derby before I went to see the Terminal City Rollergirls last weekend, was that the women have cool and sometimes funny, sometimes graphic nicknames such as Laurence of a Labia and Victory Slap, they get to wear cute and sexy outfits and they get bashed around. 

Riot Girls

 I was correct on my assumptions above, but obviously, there was so much more to it than that. I regret that I did not research the rules of the game before going. It wasn't as violent as I thought it was going to be (like on tv), but there was a lot of falling down involved. After a few jams (two minute races between teams to score points) I eventually began to somewhat understand the gist of this girls only sport. I chose my favourite team (Riot Girls) and "jammer" (the one who scores and has a star on her helmet) and spent the rest of the evening just enjoying the derby. 

Aside from being confused about the rules, I found it to be quite entertaining. It actually reminds me a bit of men's hockey (bashing each other, blocking, racing). The league seemed like a good community of colourful people who were  just out to have fun, with many volunteers helping out. 

I think I will go again. 

The next one will be on May 4th, at Minoru Arena in Richmond.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Too Busy to Go Out -- Washing My Hair with Baking Soda

I am so not a granola (not that there is anything wrong with being one). I shave my legs so that they will be silky smooth, I generally wear make-up, and I have nothing against using store bought products. So, that said, I will tell you how thrilled I am, that my bathroom, is now the new kitchen, complete with a teeny tiny fridge (did you just roll your eyes?). 

In my kitchen/bathroom, you may find baking soda, apple cider vinegar, yogurt, avocado, lemon and coconut oil -- these are not for consumption. 

Making it look pretty: In the recycled soap pump, I put in the ACV (apple cider vinegar)
conditioner, to its right is the baking soda (container from Ikea) and in the pretty container is the coconut oil.

Let's start with baking soda shampoo { ratio is not absolute, a heaping tablespoon or 2 of baking powder to 1 cup water }. I have heard about this concoction before, but because I associated it with something for the aforementioned granola types, I dismissed it without ever entertaining the idea of giving it a try. What changed my mind is a friend's post and ravings on Facebook (thanks Lisa). A recommendation from a personal acquaintance weighs in so much more than from a complete stranger. 

So, I try it. I will tell you, though, that it is strange to use. It's obviously nothing resembling shampoo at all. It is basically gritty water. Two squirts and I did my best to work it in my scalp and all through my hair. As I am rinsing, I immediately feel my hair get really soft (like after conditioning). I decided to just leave it at that and not use any conditioner at all, after all, it feels soft and untangled already. I blow dry it - no mousse, no hair spray -- nothing at all. The result is fantastic. My hair feels really clean and light. As if it has been stripped off years of gunk. It's voluminous, bouncy and shiny. If you feel that you still need a conditioner, there is ACV -- Apple Cider Vinegar Conditioner -- half water, half apple cider vinegar. }

In general, my hair is quite healthy -- it's not very thick (having children thins your hair like you wouldn't believe), I have never coloured it (maybe once when I was 16) and I don't use any curling/straightening iron. 

My almost 21 year old daughter however, has massively thick, permed, sometimes corn rowed, sometimes pink hair. She LOVES the baking soda & water concoction. She raves about it to all her friends. She uses it with the ACV conditioner (make sure to rinse well).

Coconut oil in this antique container that
I bought at a garage sale for .50 cents.
The other thing I use for everything is Virgin Coconut Oil. It is so useful for so many things like moisturizer, lotion, make-up remover, deodorant, and it is fantastic for massage -- because it is solid and melts immediately when it touches skin - there are no drippy mess. Just google it and you will discover its many uses. (Plus, think of the counter space you will gain.)

So, next on my wholesomeness experiment will be the yogurt and honey and avocado skin care. I'll keep you posted.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Steveston Fish Market

If you are Asian, and live in the Lower Mainland, you are probably familiar with the Steveston Fish Market in Steveston Village in Richmond. Sure you can buy fish at Safeway, all clean and gutted, but it's not the same as getting it fresh from the fisherman (fisher?). 

Eating/seeing a whole fish on the table freaks out many people who have only been exposed to fish and chips, but it's a very normal fare for many Asians and Europeans. Today, walking through the wharf  we see sea urchins, perch, cods, lemon sole, shrimps in various sizes, octopus, and some other ones that I've never heard of. The smell of freshness is mouth watering.  

Most people walking in the market are looky-loos -- looking with great apprehensions at those sea creatures with bulging eyes. If you are feeling brave, a good starter I would recommend (dare) is to try some fresh shrimp -- no cleaning or gutting required. It's very easy to cook (rinse, toss in a hot pan with a little garlic and olive oil, sprinkle of sea salt or if you want, just toss in a pan with a little water - when it turns pink and opaque, it's done).

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Vancouver Art Gallery: Art Spiegelman CO-MIX: A Retrospective of Comics, Graphics and Scraps

VAG [Where is Liza?©]

If you aren't a fan of graphic novels, you may not be familiar with Art Speigelman. I am quite certain that you have seen his work, though, especially his often controversial New Yorker covers.

His most famous work is Maus. 

"Maus is a graphic novel completed in 1991 by American cartoonist Art Spiegelman. It depicts Spiegelman interviewing his father about his experiences as a Polish Jew and Holocaust survivor. The book uses postmodern techniques—most strikingly in its depiction of races of humans as different kinds of animals, with Jews as mice, Germans as cats and non-Jewish Poles as pigs.Maus has been described as memoir, biography, history, fiction, autobiography, or a mix of genres. In 1992 it became the first graphic novel to win a Pulitzer Prize." -- Wikipedia[] 

I strongly advice that you join the tour rather than just viewing the exhibit. Hearing about who he is and his experiences is a big part of appreciating his work. It will be at the VAG until June 9, 2013.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Oyster Dome, Deception Pass, Anacortes

View at dusk from Lighthouse Point trail in Deception Pass [Photo by: Where is Liza©]

We all know by now how beautiful the Pacific Northwest is. Knowing this, I am still in awe every time I am staring at its splendour.

The San Juan Island area in Washington is the equivalent of our Vancouver Island (without having to take the ferry and shelling out your life savings). It consist of various islands, breathtaking cliff side views, arbutus trees sprinkled everywhere, hiking trails aplenty, and that small town feel that makes you feel like you are on vacation.

Our first stop of on this road trip is Oyster Dome off Chuckanut Drive, south of Bellingham. The original plan was to do either the 3.8 mile or 6.5 mile hike. This didn't happen because we did not get our Discovery Pass that is necessary to park in any of the Washington area parks. We are however able to drive all the way up to the lookout point which is of course spectacular. It would have been very cool to see hang gliders because it is known for it, but oh well. 

Aside from knowing that we will be camping, we actually haven't made any concrete plans on where we will be staying. So we keep on driving south and figure that we will make a decision  when we see something interesting.

[Photo by: Where is Liza©]
[Photo by: Where is Liza©]
"Interesting" has brought us to Deception Pass campground. It's perfect -- no Discovery Pass required to camp for the night. With the sound of the ocean in the background, we set camp at around 7  pm. 15 minutes before 8 pm, we are putting on our headlamps for a hike to Lighthouse point. At this time, there is still some light, but it is getting dark. We follow a trail that goes to the beach and then up to the forest, and then to more of that breathtaking stuff I've been talking about (see first photo above). It is rugged, wild and crazy beautiful. (After a few minutes, it did get quite dark; I'm sure glad that I brought those headlamps). The hike only took about an hour, with plenty of stops for photos and ooohings and aaahhhings.  

[Photo by: Where is Liza©]
The next day, we drive to Anacortes, which is in Fidalgo Island. It's a very quaint town  with buildings that feel like it's been there for a very long time. I can just imagine that this place must be quite populated in the summer/tourist months. 

Washington Park - Anacortes [Photo by: Where is Liza©]
For the future, we drive to see the other state park in the area -- Washington Park. And yup, it's beautiful. We prefer the Deception Point campsite better, but the scenery is something else.  

We hope to come back to do some hiking in this area.

Washington Park - Anacortes [Photo by: Where is Liza©]

Anacortes [Photo by: Where is Liza©]

Anacortes   [Photo by: Where is Liza©]