Friday, August 31, 2012

New Classroom Decorations

Classroom Before

Classroom After

So the newest trend in classroom decorating is to get away from all of the bulleting boards being different, and clutter and chaos. I think my new room looks sharp. You can't see it, but there are curtains and all the boarders are the same (double boarders), the shelves are all hidden behind nice fabric and the whole room is streamlined and connected together with a similar theme (lime green/silver/black/teal). It looks really great. Come visit any time!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Excited & Terrified & My DrySack Killed my iPod so now I am sad.

Despite the epic fail of my dry sack - which really only had two things to do: be a sack and keep things dry, I had a great day today.  I love days off. Don't get me wrong, work is fine. It is important to contribute to society and not milch off the government, but days off are what I live for. Days when I can do what I want, when I want, with whom I want.

Today I wanted to kayak at Bowron lake, at 11am, with myself.

So I did.

And as I drove to the lake through the mountains blasting some excellent Christian Rock, I wondered again how I can live in such an amazing place with such beauty. Blue skies, trees, mountains, rivers, creeks, wildlife, few people, little technology, little connection to the outside world. I love nature. I love being out in it, I love the sun on my face and the wind in my hair, and the water between my fingers and toes. (So long as I can see the bottom - I'm terrified of water where I can't see the bottom - snapping turtles you know). I love paddling until I don't want to paddle anymore (or until I get a blister), finding a random beach and swimming, or napping, or reading, or thinking. I like my alone time with God and nature. The peace, the quiet, the warmth and chillness of being alone on a hidden beach.

I have only one week left here in Wells/Barkerville. One week. I'm excited to leave, and yet terrified as well of the return to 'regular' life in Kamloops. I feel so alive, awake, alert, energetic, happy, relaxed, and united with myself, my community and my God here. As much as I appreciate my job, family, church, and friends in Kamloops, it doesn't provide me with the peace I get being a part of this tiny mountain community. That being said, I do get to vacation for a few days on Vancouver Island before I hit 'back-to-school' mode, and I am looking forward to being with my sisters, parents and bestie again. I miss them.

One more week.

Wednesday, August 08, 2012


Arts Wells.
The festival of all things art.
The festival of hippies, dreadlocks, music, mythical creatures, drama, and uniqueness.

This is a shot of where I was staying (the blue building) the night the festival started. If I were to write an entire blog about the festival and all I did, including a 'learn to beatbox' workshop, it would take forever. So instead, using the picture above, we are going to play 'where's waldo?'

The following is a list of things that I saw over the course of the weekend. None of it is made up. NONE of it. I know that I have a tendency to exaggerate, but I really, truly, am really, really, really, really, on my honour being honest about what I saw.

A mule and cart
a bicycle built for four
a rcmp in red serge
a unicorn
a marching band
5 men in booty shorts
134 men that look like Jesus
4 cavewomen
356 women that look like cave women
993 people with dreadlocks
a faun
a man dressed like a peacock
a ying ying
4 clowns
2 - 13 foot tall glow in the dark owls
3 brides
a two legged mule
323 music bands
67 naked hippies swimming in the creek

1 norman person
(oh wait, that was me, and I was behind the camera).

And just to prove that all those things were real, I bring you Nikki and the Faun and Nikki and Waldo
 (please ignore my "craaazy eyes." I was seriously tripping out. Not on drugs, but I JUST SAW A FREAKING FAUN!!! You'd freak out too!)

Wednesday, August 01, 2012


People are always so curious about the fairy-tale-make-believe life that I live during the summer months in Wells/Barkerville. I've been thinking about this post quite a bit and wondering how I can fully convey to you the time-change that I go through every morning before I start my shift.

During "my" time (pre 10am and post 6pm) I can usually be found sporting jeans, running clothes or cute dresses. I spend my time running, biking, kayaking, hiking, visiting friends, going to church, writing letters, watching tv or frantically trying to bum the internet off my buddy so I can keep in touch with all those people out in the world that I like. 

Around 9:45 each morning I enter "The Delorian" - aka our change room, where I transform from the Nikki you all know, into this: 

 (I call this my Anne of Green Gables costme)
 (This is my 'hot-day' costume, or my 'black costume, or 'the really nice costumethat everyone likes the best')
(This is my 'cold-day costume or my 'brown costume' or my 'wow-my-waist-looks-tiny-I-wonder-if-that's-from-running-4k-every-morning-or-if-it's-from-my-corset-costume'

After changing, getting the photo-equipment ready, cleaning up the shop, going up the street to get tea and gab for a few minutes with the other historical interpreters,  I start welcoming customers into the store. I take their money, dress them up, snap photo's, edit, print, frame etc. Nothing too exiting or blog-worthy although I do enjoy it.

But the thing that I thought would be interesting to ya'll, is how when we all put on our costumes at 10am each morning, we no longer are "Nikki" or "Hayley" or "Austin" or "Jessee." No, no no. We are now "Miss. Gerrits, Miss. Archer, Reverand Raynard and Mr. Mogan." We must refer to eachother as such. Gentlemen must tip their hats to us and remove them if they come into the shop. Ladies never leave a shelter without gloves, a hat and a shawl or jacket. We may not carry around anything modern - phones (which don't work anyways), i-pods, even plastic containers, bags or car keys are a no-no. These things for me are not so difficult. What is difficult is conversation.

Conversation. Discussion. Talking with my friends. As plesant and wonderful as a good chat can be, it takes quite a bit of thinking and cleverness to spit out what it is that we are trying to say. You're wondering why? Why can't we just say what we want to say? Ahhhh... because we are in 1867. Here are some samples of how we must speak at work.

"Miss. Hodgkinson? Perchance would you like to join Miss. Archer, Mr. Morgan, Mr. Ferguson, Teacher Chow and I this evening as we take my carriage to Quesnel Forks to see that new theatrical production about the man with bat-like qualities?"

Translation: Hey! Amanda! Wanna go see Batman tonight with us?"

"Miss. Archer! This morning on my journey to work I perceived that today was going to be stifling! I know it is quite improper, but I have decided to forego on some of my more restrictive underpinnings today."

Translation: Hayley, it's ridonculously hot today, I'm not gonna wear my corset"

"Well, this past weekened, I followed the migratory paths of our southern flying friends and purchased a new carriage."

Translation: I flew to Vancouver and picked up my new car.

"Well, I'm off to see a man about a horse."

Translation: These tourists are driving me mental and I need to get away from them.

Most of the historical interpreters and staff are much quicker and wittier in their speech than I am, but I try. After a long day of being Miss. Gerrits a la 1867, I head back into the Delorian and come 6pm, I turn back into Nikki.

(p.s. 10000 points to whoever knows why we named our changeroom "the Delorian")