Monday, 27 August 2012

From YVR to PDX: Our first family bike vacation...Day 5, Home Again

As we woke up to our last day in Portland, things were feeling bittersweet. We've spent the last four days preparing for getting out into the city and exploring, but now it was time to pack up our things and get ready to return home to Vancouver. I will admit that personally, I was ready to get back to a routine, and my own bed, but the kids were sad to leave, saying they were going to miss Portland several times. It's nice to know they had fun!
Coralie and I waiting patiently to cross
So after packing up our things and loading them on our bikes, we set off. We had until about 1:00pm to get to the train station, so we killed a bit of time doing a bit of last minute shopping for the kids. Then it was time for one last stop. We had been promising the kids since Wednesday that we would try to stop for donuts once more before we left, and so we made a small detour to the second location of Voodoo Doughnuts on the east side of Portland. It really wasn't that much of a sacrifice for Chris and I, they are fantastic doughnuts!

They taste like awesomeness...really!
After that, it was to the train station and onto the train for our return trip along the coastline. There's something about trips home that seem so much longer. I feel the same when we travel back from visits with our families back East. Maybe it's because the vacation is over, or knowing that it's back to work the next day, or because we all know it'll be a while before our next big vacation. It might be a combination of all three, but either was, it is always sad to end an adventure.
One last bridge crossing on the Burnside,
I believe that made four bridges crossed: Broadway,
Hawthorne, Steel and Burnside
Arriving at Union Station, ready for home
Now we're home, and it's the day after our five day bike vacation, and here are my final thoughts on our little experiment on two wheels. First and foremost, we need to be better prepared next time for minor bike hiccups. I haven't mentioned yet, but I also go a flat on Friday. Thankfully, a quick repair with a patch and the use of our hosts' bike pump had me up and running again, but from now on, we will always have extra tubes, a patch kit and a pump on us when we are travelling by bike. 
Our bikes stored in the baggage car, all
working perfectly again and ready for YVR
I also know that we made the best decision possible in terms of our accommodations. Yes, we were a bit out of the way, and perhaps next time we'll research our proximity to transit a bit better so we don't have a 20 minute walk with a 40 lb sleeping child in our arms, but having a cheap place to stay with a kitchen allowed for two things staying in a downtown hotel wouldn't have. We got to experience the quieter side of Portland while riding along the side streets on our bikes, and we were able to eat on a budget by preparing most meals ourselves. Eating out is always a nice treat, but as anyone with a family knows, even breakfast can turn into an expensive ordeal when you're feeding two hungry, growing children.

There was a lot to take away from our experiences, but I think the biggest thing for me was learning to relax and go with the flow. Our kids are amazing little globetrotters, having travelled throughout Canada, the USA and Europe in six short years. However, they remain one thing, kids. They get tired, they get grumpy, and sometimes, they just don't want to walk or ride anymore, as evidenced with Etienne's mid-ride nap. So when that happens, even if we had plans for what to do next, we need to able to modify them. There will come a day in the not so distant future when our kids will be able to keep up with us and sight see all day long. But until then, vacations will have to be flexible, and we have to be willing to not see or do something we really hoped to for the sake of the kids. The main thing about vacations are spending time doing something different as a family, and I think we succeeded wonderfully. 

Now it's time to rest up before our next bicycle adventure and the perfect way to end the summer...camping on the island! Hopefully we can take some of the lessons learned this past week to help make our long weekend a success. Stay tuned!

Sunday, 26 August 2012

From YVR to PDX: Our first family bike vacation...Day 4

Our last full day in Portland was quite eventful, but we decided to keep it a transit day and give ourselves and our bikes a rest. The great thing about Portland's transit is that for only $5.00 you can purchase a day pass and ride as much as you like! So after a big breakfast, we hopped on the MAX line and headed to Old Town and the Saturday Market. The market is huge, full of vendors selling everything from pottery, clothing, jewellery, food and whatever else you can think of. So we took a wander through, eventually ending up at the waterfront and another fountain for the kids to splash in. This is clearly a tradition for many Portlanders because there were tons of kids running through having a ball.
The crowded Saturday Market
Etienne splashing around again!
From there, we walked a bit through downtown, and then caught the tram back to our apartment to get ready for the main event. The kids got out of their wet clothes and we all got on our Whitecaps gear, ready to support our team in enemy territory. Chris had actually been wearing his shirt all day, which created a random conversation with a family from Vancouver who happened to be travelling through and was looking for a way to get tickets. We also had a Portland fan give us some post-game transit advise, which was so nice! So there you go, kids can make friends anywhere and a sports jersey can strike up a conversation. Who knew?
Etienne waiting for the train, all set to cheer on the 'Caps
Once back downtown ready for the game, we stopped at what is now my favourite pizza joint, Sizzle Pie. We first ate here on our last visit at their East /Burnside location, and I insisted we go again. With creative names for each of the pies, and a grunge kind of aesthetic, it's just a cool place to go. I recommend The Four Hoursemen pizza, featuring mozza, white cheddar, ricotta and goat's cheese. Delicious!

That is one giant pizza!
From dinner, it was off to Jeld-Wen field with the rest of the fans, Portland Timbers and Vancouver Whitecaps alike. While making our way to the supporters gate, we managed to time our walk with the arrival of the team bus, and we able to show the WCFC players our support before the game, including the kids getting a high five from our keeper, Joe Cannon! Once in our seats, the cheering began, and to my surprise and pleasure, the kids joined in with every chant they knew, and for the ones they didn't, they clapped their hearts out. We will make football fans out of them yet!
A few hundred of our fellow WCFC supporters
Clap, clap, clap...White Caps!
Sadly, the Whitecaps fell 2-1 to the Timbers, but the game was electric and it was so much fun to be with our fellow fans to support our team on the road. It was a new experience for everyone, and well worth the trip. We hopped on the tram back to our apartment, the kids exhausted after an long and exciting evening. Only one day left before we leave Portland and return to Canadian soil.

Friday, 24 August 2012

From YVR to PDX: Our first family bike vacation...Day 3

Well, today was a much calmer day then yesterday. Well, calmer to us. We started off the same, with breakfast in our rental suite, then it was off to the Pearl District via the Broadway Bridge, where we parked our bikes at Jamison Square. The plan was since it was expected to be a warmer day, we would spend the day at the fountain, splashing around. However, when we arrived around 11am, it was a little cooler than we expected. So we took advantage of the free downtown streetcars and headed into the city centre for some late birthday shopping for Coralie. What a fabulous idea, offering free transit within the downtown area. Not only is it great for visitors like us, but it encourages locals to hop on the tram lines instead of into their cars to get from one side of downtown to another. I can only think that such forward thinking is a great way to move beyond car dependence.
Enjoying our sunny morning ride to the Pearl District

Free transit? Thank you, Portland!

After a bit of shopping, we headed back to the Pearl District for a picnic lunch in the square and lots of splashing around, mainly for Etienne who seems to have no issue with cold water. He also made some friends and ran around with some local boys. It's always so great to watch kids adapt so quickly and meet new people without feeling shy or out of place! And while the kids played in the water, Chris and I relaxed and just enjoyed some quiet time. This is actually something we're trying to force on ourselves. When we travel, we naturally try to be moving constantly, and seeing as much as we can. But since having kids, we've realized this is much more tricky, as kids just don't have the same attention span as adults, and to ask them to continue from one place to the next with no rest or play time just doesn't work. It's a work in progress, but we're accepting it more and more.
Etienne splashing around in the falls at Jamison Square
Chris learning to relax and just take in the
The kids at the gate to Chinatown
In the late afternoon, we decided to head home for a rest before dinner. We took the route past the gate to Chinatown, stopping for a quick photo opportunity, and then it was back across the Steel Bridge. That's when my worst fear happened. Etienne fell asleep halfway across the bridge while sitting on the trail-a-bike! Those familiar with Portland would know that we were in the middle of what Chris and I would call "no man's land", in that there were no parks, fast food restaurants or coffee shops really close by where we could stop while he had a power nap. So, I improvised. I plopped Etienne into my rear basket, let him sleep as best he could, and we made our way up the ramp from the bridge on foot towards the Rose Garden Arena and hopefully some refuge. Thankfully, once we reached the top Etienne appeared to have had just enough rest, and woke up and pedalled the rest of the way to our apartment. It's a good thing, too, because that little boy has been known for naps that have lasted up to 3 hours, and that's a long time to sit around in a cafe, even for coffee lovers like us!

Coralie enjoying a cool, refreshing drink at an
interesting water feature
Steel Bridge - this was a shot we meant to get yesterday 
An improvised resting place for Etienne. Proof
kids will sleep almost anywhere.
This evening, we went for dinner in the Alberta Arts District, stopping in at the Mash Tun Brew Pub. We've been to Portland three times now, and this was our first brew pub, if you can believe it! The beer was fantastic, and we got to connect with an Instagram friend, who happens to also work for the Portland Timbers. It's always weird when you put a face to a social media friend's name, but it was nice to chat with a local, while also talking "football". It made us all excited for tomorrow, and the main reason why we decided to choose Portland for our vacation destination this summer. Tomorrow we join 750 fellow Southsiders/Whitecaps fans to cheer on our boys as they take on their Cascadia Rivals, the Portland Timbers. It's going to be intense!
The brewing kettles at the Mash Tun...I recommend the
Red Ale

Thursday, 23 August 2012

From YVR to PDX: Our first family bike vacation...Day Two

Phew! What a night yesterday! But I am happy to say that after a bagel breakfast from the local New Seasons and a quick stop at Revolver Bikes for a new inner tube and an extra one just in case, we definitely moved onwards and upwards for our bike vacation. Looking at the weather forecast, it was clear today would likely be the cooler of our four days in Portland. So we decided to make today the day we did our longest planned ride, and ride we did!
Just starting our day, everyone smiling and bikes running smoothly
Our first trek would be the 12 km ride along the calm Bike Boulevards to Mount Tabor Park. It was a trip we had meant to do on our last visit, but due to weather and the fact that we really wanted to see Cathedral Park at the time, which was a 30 km, day long ride, it was left for next time. If you haven't heard about Mount Tabor, it is a volcanic cinder cone on the East side of the city. It was pretty neat to see, although I'm sure the kids enjoyed the playground much more...typical. 
At the top of Mt. Tabor and still smiling...sort of 
See-Saw in the park
Cliff-side near the cinder cone
I will admit that while I was quite excited to finally get to the park, since I am a closet geology nerd with no formal training, the most enjoyable part of the journey was travelling along the quiet streets, seeing all the homes with such character along the way. I realize that character can be found in the homes in some of the neighbourhoods throughout Vancouver, but riding along knowing that these homes were much more in our reach financially makes them seem more...realistic I guess. At any rate, I think riding through these calmer areas may just become a highlight of my trip.

Coralie passing the counter, #3214
After a picnic lunch in Mount Tabor, we headed west to the Hawthorne Bridge and their new Bicycle Counter - if you click the link, for the numbers on August 22, we are 4 of those 7000+ riders. This counter is the first in North America, and since it started counting on August 8th, it has already counted over 94,000 riders. It's a pretty cool idea, and really shows how many people do ride their bikes every day which I think can only be seen as a boost to the cycling community. So, Vancouver, what are we waiting for?!

View of the Tram from the top
After passing the counter, we headed south along the water to the Aerial Tram that takes 6000+ people from the waterfront up to the OHSU daily by crossing over the I-5 and up the steep hill to the medical centre. For tourists like us, it gives us a chance to see the view east, and on a clear day, you can see from Mt. St. Helen's all the way over to Mt. Hood and beyond. Sadly, we never seem to luck out when it comes to aerial views and clear skies, but the ride is cool nonetheless. What we could do is see how far we had travelled since lunch, pointing out Mt. Tabor, a 9km ride in the distance. It reminded Chris of our honeymoon in Barcelona, when we walk all the way from the waterfront to Park Guell, which, if you haven't been, is a fair distance, up hill the whole way. Apparently, nothing has changed in our travelling style, except we now have two children with us!

The free bike valet at the base of the Tram...
I've never seen so many bikes in one place!
Etienne checking out the view

Crossing the Willamette on the Steel Bridge
Once we returned to the waterfront, it was time to head back to our "home" for dinner. We rode along the water on the west side of the Willamette River, crossing at the Steel Bridge. We had actually planned to ride all the way to the Broadway Bridge, which we had taken from the train station yesterday, but as we got closer to this massive steel structure, we saw a walking/cycling path running underneath the main car and tram traffic, and we decided to change our route. We're glad we did! Seeing the old train lines and marvelling at all the steelwork is something we would have missed had we taken the main roads. It's just one of those things people can miss vacationing mainly by car, and so we appreciate these moments when we get to experience something out of the ordinary simply because we choose to ride our bikes.

Nearly home after a long day.
Still smiles all around
What to choose? Inside Voodoo Donuts.

So, we clearly had a busy day. but there was one last thing to do as a treat after a long day of riding. We hopped on the MAX Line after dinner and headed downtown for some Voodoo Donuts at the flagship location on SW 3rd Ave. It's something we've done each of our visits, and I, for one, have never had the same one twice. It's the little things that count, and a yummy, sweet treat after riding a total of 30 kms around the streets of Portland. Now the kids are all nestled into bed, it's 10:30pm, and Chris and I are enjoying a glass of local red wine to finish off our day. Tomorrow, it's off to the Pearl District...stay tuned!
All tuckered out after a long day

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

From YVR to PDX: Our first family bike vacation...Day One

Coralie and I heading into the station in
YVR at the crack of dawn
It finally happened. After over a year of being in Vancouver nearly every day, the family and I were finally heading out of the city for a proper vacation. Don't get me wrong, I love Vancouver, but as anyone in any city they love can attest, sometimes, you just need to get out and experience something different. Being a budget conscious family, we decided to take our car-free selves to Portland, OR. This will be our third visit to the city, and each time gets less and less touristy and more just about getting away and experiencing something new. So on our bikes, bright and early (5:30am to be exact), we set off from our place in East Vancouver to Pacific Central Station to board the Amtrak Cascade line to Portland.

Our family of bikes being loaded onto the train
The last time we took this train line, we were only going so far as Seattle, and the trip was at night so we couldn't see any of the beautiful landscape along the Cascadian coastline. This time around, since we were leaving as the sun started to rise, we got to see everything. This coastline really is spectacular, with the gorgeous mix of blue sky, clear waters and luscious, green trees. Watching it all go by from my window was so peaceful, and for the first time in months, I felt relaxed and like I truly was on vacation.
My seat with a view
As the stations rolled by on our eight hour journey, the kids switched up between watching the world go by, colouring or doing some back-to-school math refreshers, and watching some retro cartoons, Ghostbusters to be exact. As we moved more inland, Etienne noticed all the farmland and the grazing animals, and was fascinated. It then dawned on me that he actually hasn't spent much time outside of a city environment, and so wasn't used to the sights. That is something we will have to remedy.
The kids having some downtime with Dr. Venkman
My bike, safe and sound in PDX
In the late afternoon sun we arrived at Union Station in Portland, and our bike adventures began. We rode from the station to our home for four nights in the Alberta Arts District, Etienne behind Chris on the trail-a-bike, me on my bike and Coralie pedalling along on her own. It is important to note that we did bring our bikes to Portland during our second visit, but Coralie was still on the trail-a-bike at that time, and Etienne in the trailer, and we drove down. This time, we are relying completely on public transit and our pedal power to get us around the city, something that was very exciting for all of us and a new adventure to add to the books.

Our first sight as we arrived in PDX
Coralie and I biking over Broadway Bridge 
Our home away from home...thanks to
Chris' bike will live to see another day...
and hopefully a new inner tube
That's when things went a little sour. Just after we had settled into our home away from home, we went to head out to grab some dinner when Chris realized he had a flat on his front tire. Ok, no problem...I managed to remember to bring a patch kit. However, I completely forgot to bring our pump. Thankfully, our host had one to lend us. Unfortunately, Chris' tube has a presta valve, and the pump wouldn't work, and we also managed to forget our adaptor for just such an occasion. With it being after closing time at all the bike shops, it looks like fixing our minor hiccup will have to wait till tomorrow. Not the best start to our bike vacation, but on the bright side, lessons have been learnt, and it can only get better from here!

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

A girl, a bike and a dream...

Meet Brenna, one of the most beautiful
people I know.
I first met Brenna Coupland nearly four years ago, when I was seven months pregnant with Etienne and Coralie was still my adorable little toddler. We lived in the same building at 41st and Victoria, and she had posted about babysitting services in our common laundry room. When I met her that November I never would have guessed how big a part of our lives she would become. Brenna was part of my motivation to start riding a bike again after years without. She became our "go to girl" when we needed a responsible, trustworthy person to watch our children from as early as Etienne being just a few weeks old, and through her amazing travels she has grown to be an inspirational figure in our lives.

As I said, we first got to know Brenna as a babysitter, but she soon became my yoga instructor, my push to get back on two wheels, and my nutritional advisor, whose tips I still keep in mind. But Brenna was meant for bigger things. In 2010, Brenna started volunteering with the Shanti Uganda Society, a group helps support the women in Uganda, and empower them through midwifery, entrepreneurship and a variety of other areas. Brenna's goal from then on was to go to Uganda and be a part of this amazing group on the ground. Should that not be a big enough challenge, being one who loves travelling on two wheels, her bicycle would have to be an integral part of the journey.

The first part of her journey would be start in the summer of 2010, when Brenna travelled from Vancouver to her childhood home in Winnipeg, MB to raise money for the women of Uganda. Travelling mainly along the Highway 1 route east, she learned to rely on the kindness of strangers along the way, meeting some interesting, generous and unique people along the way. When I asked her what her favourite part of that journey was, Brenna told me about a farm she stayed at in Chase, BC. There she met a variety of people who were all very positive and willing to all pitch in to make the farm work and provide for each other, and experiencing that created an appreciation for the good in people. In her words, "Although I was only there for one night, it was like I was there for a week." All in all, her trip halfway across Canada raised about $2000 for Shanti Uganda, pretty impressive for a 22 year old woman on two wheels! But this would not be the end of Brenna's philanthropic adventures...she was going to Africa, and the journey would be epic.
Brenna after the trek to Winnipeg. In her words,
"changed, and so inspired."
Work began as early as her return to Vancouver in the Fall of 2010. Brenna's next ride was going to start on June 20, 2011, and would begin by completing the trek across Canada, meaning she would ride from Winnipeg, MB to St. John's, NFLD. From there, she would travel down to New York City, and then take the long flight to Cape Town, South Africa. While travelling through North America is no small feat, and a great adventure, reaching Cape Town in October 2011 would make her dream a reality as she travelled North to Morocco. 

My family and I followed her journey all along the way through her blog,, and her Facebook updates, Coralie being so excited to see what new place Brenna had reached. During her travels, she experienced so many new places, cultures and foods, all would inspire her greatly. She also gained some very important insight into travelling alone as a young woman. She learned not to be fearful because she wasn't with a man, that she was completely capable on her own, and grew the confidence to ask people for help when she needed it, which many were all too willing to give. 

I had asked a seemingly silly question about such a long and eventful journey. What was her favourite part? Of course as soon as I asked it, I realized it was a very loaded question, but Brenna being such a thoughtful person, took a moment, and told me about various parts of the whole journey that made each country special, but Botswana held a dear place in her memories of her trip. Here is an excerpt from her blog from Christmas 2011:

"Yesterday – Christmas – I didn’t feel much like riding. My body was tired, aching for a rest, and moving any quicker than 12 km/hour seemed impossible. In addition, the wind was coming from the North East again – yep, where my nose points! By mid day, the temperature was a scorching 40 degrees Celsius , and maybe even hotter with the humidity! But it was Christmas, and I had to get to Maun!

Roadside goats in Botswana
So, instead of feeling frustrated, which would have been easy to do, I decided to just enjoy the peacefulness of a leisurely ride. I started to appreciate and wonder about the different elements of life in Botswana: Waif looking goats and cattle lazily grazing beside the road, donkeys skittishly bolting into the bush when they notice me, and – and this is unique to Botswana; I did not find this in any other country so far – entire skeletons of horses and cows laying perfectly intact in the field, possibly in the exact same position as when they had passed.

It’s strange, but there is something very beautiful and perfect about these elements of Botswana. I feel a total acceptance and embracing of the circle of life here. There is so much vitality: green grass and animals running free. There are few fences but no one seems to be running away. Death seems to be accepted as much as life, and the animals are able to return to the earth exactly as nature intended. Every butterfly, beetle, animal and grain of sand has it’s purpose here, and yesterday, I eventually allowed myself to become lost in the bigger picture, which was a really beautiful thing.

‘Uh oh,’ I thought, as I snapped out of my dreamy state. ‘I think I’m starting to fall in love with Botswana!’"

By this time in her journey, Brenna is a mere 23 years of age. These written words sound like those of someone well beyond the years, who has lived a much longer life. But reading this gives a glimpse into what a beautifully unique, thoughtful and passionate woman Brenna is.

Brenna's bike, Topanga, resting in Egypt
After months in Africa, being inspired by her surroundings, and a brief stop back home with her family in Winnipeg, Brenna has returned to Vancouver, and we have the honour to put her up with a place to stay before heading off to her next journey. This time a bit more local. Brenna now plans to travel to Quadra Island to take an in depth bike maintenance course. Her plan is to take these skills and volunteer in a community bike shop, whether here or back home in Winnipeg, where she will help those less fortunate than her. But I know she's not finished travelling. Wherever she goes from here, those she encounters on the way will be blessed to meet such an amazing young woman still at the start of her life's journey. My life is forever changed for having invited Brenna into my little family. I know that through all the crap out there, there are many special people, willing to sacrifice so much to help others. It helps reminds me to try and find the positive when things get tough, and to truly cherish what I have...a small group of very special friends, wonderful family all across this country, two beautiful children, and a wonderfully supportive husband who has given me so much over these past 15 years. But this post isn't about me, so I will leave you with some final words from Brenna after she finished her journey:

"I will be a person who is loved by my best girlfriends, my brother and sister, my cousins, nieces and nephews, my kids and grandchildren and the people in the community where I am working. When I am 80, I would like them to toast to my commitment, my heart and courage, and to my faith and positivity."

Friday, 17 August 2012

Foodie Friday #4 - Spicy Black Bean Empanadas

Today's recipe is always a family favourite. It's also the easiest way to get my kids to eat beans without complaint! As a vegetarian family, we use ground round for the filling, but feel free to modify with ground beef or chicken for your family.


1 package of Puff Pastry
1 egg
1 tbsp water
1/2 lb ground round (or meat of choice)
1 small red pepper diced
4 med green onions diced
1 clove garlic minced
1/2 cup tomato sauce
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp chilli powder
1/2 tsp crushed peppers
1 1/2 cup shredded cheese
15 oz can of black beans
1/4 cup cilantro


Preheat oven to 375 degrees F

Thaw pastry. Whisk egg and water and set aside.

Cook ground round on medium, adding diced pepper, onions and garlic and cook until tender. Stir in tomato sauce, cumin, chilli pepper and chilli powder. Reduce heat to low ad simmer for 8 minutes. Remove from heat and add cheese, one cup of beans and cilantro. Set aside and let cool.

Roll out pastry dough to 16x12" and cut into ten 2 1/2" rounds. Top half of round with bean mixture, brush edges with water and egg mixture, fold over dough and brush with egg mixture. Repeat until all rounds are filled. (NOTE: I can make at least a dozen of these, or keep left over mixture for wraps) 

Bake empanadas for 18 minutes or until golden brown. Allow to cool slightly, and serve with sour cream, guacamole and remaining beans.

Public Transit to the Rescue!

A couple of days ago, when biking home from the grocery store, our reliable trailer got a flat tire. No problem, we can fix it with a patch, or so we thought, until I tried filling it at a gas station to make the 5 minute trip home, and as fast as the power air filled it, it emptied. So it turned out we needed a replacement tube. Until then, I was stuck without a means to transport Etienne with my bike, and yesterday was forecast to be another roasting, sunny day. So what's a velo Mom to do? Well, knowing we needed to find a place to cool down, Etienne and I resorted to public transit to get us to the splash pad at Granville Island. Suited up and ready to go, we hopped on the B-Line and bussed it out to Granville Street. Etienne was actually really stoked to watch the world go by outside the bus window, shouting "I'm so excited" several times! I wish I had his enthusiasm when on the bus, I'm sure it would help quell some of the motion sickness I get.
Etienne riding at the back on the B-Line
After spending a good hour splashing around and going down the water slide, it was time to head home to get Coralie from daycamp. Now, sometimes I am known for having some forethought. Yesterday was one of those days. I knew Etienne would be exhausted, so I dusted off my baby sling from my earlier mom years, and got Etienne to slip in and have a snooze. I realize I am not an official form of public transit, but Etienne got to relax and sit in the sling as I transported him to the bus home.
Etienne snuggled up in his sling...I'll admit, I kind of miss this
Not wanting to walk all the way up to Broadway from Granville Island, I hopped on a bus downtown that picks up right at the entrance to the Island, but not before picking up that replacement tube. Once downtown, we switched to the Skytrain, which takes us just one block from our front door. We are really lucky to live in the location of Vancouver that we do. We're right by the Commercial/Broadway transportation hub, and numerous local bikeways. While we sometimes dream of moving to other neighbourhoods, the convenience of public transit so close to home makes life so much easier, when taking our bikes are not an option. And Vancouver doesn't disappoint for being as accessible as any other big city when you're a family without a car!
Etienne snoozin' for the Skytrain ride
Off the train and heading home