Back To Our Regularly Scheduled Programming…

Hello Everyone!

Sorry I have been MIA for much of this year, especially after our Japan trip. A lot has happened in the last 10 months, all of it good and very exciting. As many of you know I am a Jill of many trades and rarely satisfied doing one thing for too long. I get antsy. In a past life, I worked at Garden Works Garden Centre for many years. During this time I absorbed as much knowledge as I could and realised I had a passion of gardening and plants. I also have a passion for writing (obviously) and photography (comes with the part of being a photographers daughter.)

In March of this year, I had one of those light bulb moments while falling asleep. I had been struggling with the regular antsyness that always seems to creep up on me when I have been doing something for a long time. I had been happy with writing the blog, consulting here and there and doing photography. But there was this itch I needed to scratch. I wanted to combine all of my passions and talents – writing, photography, social media, plants and the environment. But how? This light bulb moment had me up on my computer at 1:00 am writing a proposal to numerous garden centres who perhaps needed someone to write their blogs and manage their social media for them. I worked at this proposal for a week and eventually sent it out – not even telling Steve about it for fear that he would think I was crazy.

Long story short, someone actually emailed me back! So for the better part of this year I have been working as a contractor for Amsterdam Garden Centre in Pitt Meadows, BC as their Digital Media Manager. I promote their business on social media, write their blogs and event built their website. They had a lot of faith in me and took a chance taking on a stranger into their family business. You can see my work on Instagram and Facebook and read my bi-weekly blogs on their website. Mike Lascelle is their Master Gardener, and he writes the blogs the other 50% of the time.

The bonus of this company is that it aligned perfectly with my values of environmental sustainability and supporting small businesses. Amsterdam exclusively uses organic fertilisers in their greenhouses and are always striving to make their company greener. Started by Jason’s parents, Amsterdam turned 40 this year and has been family owned and operated ever since.

Example of the photography I do for Amsterdam Garden Centre

Working for Jason and Lindsay Kok (Owners of Amsterdam Garden Centre) has been an amazing opportunity, so when the second big change of the year was to come, I was extremely nervous. Steve and I had been talking about moving to Kelowna for several years, so when the opportunity for him to change companies arose we were both excited and nervous about making the change. I had just settled into a great job and our townhouse was surrounded by amazing friends and community.

But you guys know me, the call of change, the itch to move has always plagued me. So I approached Jason and Lindsay again, and again asked them to take a chance on me – to let me work remotely from Kelowna for them. So far, a almost two months here, it has worked out! Many people have asked how I manage it, but my method seems to be solid. I stockpile photos for the month during a week long visit to the coast, come home, organize and format them. Then I have numerous phone meetings with the staff and managers to make sure we are all on the same page. It takes an exceptional amount of organization, but I love it so far.

Our new neighbourhood in Kelowna

The bonus of working remotely is that I have a tiny bit more time here to actually get back to my baby the Cedar Coast blog! I have so many ideas, plans, projects and renovations to share with you in the weeks and months to come. A usual, environmental sustainability is at the forefront of our lives and we plan on continuing that here in Kelowna.

So thank you all for sticking with me during this silent period and I am sorry to the followers who may have given up on me. But I am back and thank you all for reading this! I plan on writing once a week again, sharing our green lives. If you would like to follow Amsterdam Garden Centre on Facebook and Instagram and subscribe to the blog and newsletter, we would appreciate it! If you are in Metro Vancouver or the Fraser Valley, I highly recommend you take a trip out to visit them. It is truly a beautiful place to shop and just hang out.

Cheers – Heather Youl

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