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Vancouver Apartment Hunting + A Birthday

‘Allo, ‘allo!!!!  Boy, I am really lagging on the posts lately, eh?!  Jeff + I had a pretty rough time apartment hunting over the weekend in Vancouver.




Excuses!!!  So many excuses!  I got a lot of ’em.  Moving along!  We were up before the dawn, on our way to the Calgary airport for our flight to Vancouver.




Apartment hunting is a beyotch!!!!  Since I have my condo in Little Tokyo, I haven’t been on the hunt for a long time!  And guess what?  It sucks!!!!


I did weeks of research on neighborhoods in Vancouver, looked at Craigslist every flipping day, emailed + called countless prospects.  I was even victim to a scam!  There are A LOT of scammers on Craigslist!!!!  Scammers will even provide an address + photos of the “house”, but if they email you + say they’re in Africa, London, the Philippines or they work for a non-profit HIV center or the World Health Organization or they mention God profusely in their email – they’re a scam artist.  Beware.


Our first viewing.









Tiny, low ceilings, expensive.  Here Jeff is catching me probably bossing him around + in mid sentence, “Make sure you’re getting good pictures!”.

I had my red notebook, references, resumes, a copy of my condo rental lease AND pictures of Megumi!  I was a regular poindexter!!!!




I was like, “Jeff!!!!  We have to SELL ourselves!!!  SELLLLLL!!!!!”.  Poor guy was completely exhausted from work.


Here’s a house we perused that I am really, really crossing my fingers over!!!!  Check me out pulling up my saggy jeans so that I appear put together.  Hot.  So attractive.  Thanks, Jeff.

Close to the vicinity of the house is Renfrew Ravine Park.  Great jogging paths + a labyrinth!!!  To die for!

Do you like the preppy outfit I chose for Jeff???  I wanted him to look like a right proper chap!!!

Labyrinths are not a good thing for people that see patterns everywhere + are attracted to uniformity!!!  Jeff kept walking + walking + walking around the maze!  I was like, “URRRGH!!!!  LET’S GO!!!!!!”

Well, I finally dragged Jeff away from his precious labyrinth + convinced him walk around the park a bit more.

Look how cute!!!  I want to live in this neighborhood!!!
Folks, it was an emotional house hunt!  My adrenaline was sky high!  I was bound + determined to find a new home!!!!  Rental prices in Vancouver are sky high, the units are tiny, there’s a ton of basement suites for rent, but who wants to live in a dark, depressing basement with small windows for $1,500???  I was in a serious funk.  While Jeff has his hoarding problem, I make up for it with my bratiness.  Jeff sure has a lot of patience.  It was sulky, pouty city in our rental vehicle all day long!

We called it quits for the day + we met up with the Hoiles at the swimming pool!  Little Keiko + Hana!!!!  Revive + refresh my cranky soul!!!

Little Hana was so determined on paddling herself around the pool.  She is totally going to become a ripping surfer one day!

Back at Casa de Hoiles, preparations went underway to celebrate my awesome sister-in-law Deb’s birthday!!!

Thank god our art director was there to give us some tips!

Thumbs up from the Party Decoration Crew!!!  Strike a pose, Hana!!!

Here’s Steve manning the grill with my brother-in-law Tom supervising.

Meanwhile, Jeff was inside preparing the spot prawns we purchased for the occasion.

In you go, little sea creatures!  Yum, they were succulent + tender!!!

After dinner, I was entertaining Keiko with some tissue paper crafts.  The kids + I took this series of photos that was seriously cracking me up.

Little rays of sunshine!!!!  So irresistible!!!!  Ooooh, you just want to PINCH THOSE LITTLE CHEEKS!!!!!!!!!

The kids had their dinner + the girls are always up for a photo op with “Jeffy”.

Jeff is perpetually up for a photo op as well.  Whenever, wherever, as the Shakira song goes.  Here he is with his best man, Steve.  So stoic.  So masculine.

I am so saddened/happy that Steve, Liz, Keiko + Hana are moving to Encinitas, California in September!!!!  Right at the time when I intend on planting some roots in Vancouver!  Like passing ships in the night!!!!  I’m going to miss them so much!!!!!  Upside is, I got a pad to crash at when I visit Encinitas!!!!  Shaka!!!!

Here’s Tobin putting candle’s in his mom’s cake!  Each of the kids had their own color that they put in the cake themselves.  Fun times!


Kids + cake = temporary pandemonium.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, DEB!!!!  Thank you for everything you do for ALL OF US!!!!!

And thank you Steve + Liz for having Jeff + I over for so many dinners + so many trips to the cottage at Sakinaw Lake!!!  Excuse me while I go off into a corner + quietly whimper to myself (that is a picture from Jeff + I’s wedding day).

An action packed, long day for everyone!!!  It was serious crash time for all parties involved!

The next day was another fruitless, soul deflating apartment search flop.  The night of our departure, Calgary was having a crazy-zay hail storm of golf ball sized nuggets of fury.  Our flight was delayed – we didn’t get home until around 2am + Jeff had to wake up at 5am for work on “Hell on Wheels”.

I’m wishing on my lucky stars that one of the rental house we saw over the weekend comes through!!!  It was a fast + packed weekend, but because of family it wasn’t as stressful as it could have been!  Happy Birthday, Deb!!!!!!!!

13 Comments Post a comment
  1. I like the term “golf ball-sized nuggets of fury”! Our neighbourhood was fine, but friends not far from us even had windows on their house broken and siding ripped off! I was watching it/the lightning show from a hotel balcony with a bunch of over-indulging authors and publishers. It was a very exciting storm all the way around. 🙂

    Sorry to hear the house hunt wasn’t more sucessful though! 😦

    August 14, 2012
    • I got a couple dings on my car! Did you get any damage? Do you know a place in Calgary that does cheap ding repairs???

      August 15, 2012
      • We didn’t get any damage this time – last time we did the insurance company took care of everything, so I’m not even sure how much it cost! Sorry…you’ve found a topic that I don’t actually really know much about… 🙂

        August 15, 2012
      • You always have the answer to everything!!!!

        August 15, 2012
  2. hiroko nishino #

    I hope you hear from the land lord soon.

    August 14, 2012
  3. Heather #

    Wholly Hanna!!! I just wanna give you my house! Sorry it’s not in van! I’m here!!! I’m here!!! I’m here!!! and I miss you. Funny lady! Big Love!

    August 15, 2012
    • Haha!!! Thanks Heather!!! Miss you too!!

      August 15, 2012
  4. kenny daddO/Papi nishino #

    hi, Nan, did U get the house in Hong’Couver, i hope U
    did,…by the way are U gonna be in LALA-land around
    Oct. 4th, Jake Shimabukuro is playing in Pepperdine U.
    let us know, OK, best 2 Jeff, take care Miss U, luv Papi

    August 15, 2012
    • I would love to see Jake Shimabukuro play! I’m not sure, but keep me posted closer to the date!!

      August 15, 2012
  5. Deb Fayle #

    What a treat to see you and Jeff for the night! Thanks so much for making my birthday into a wonderful celebration!!! I loved every minute of it and appreciate all that you and the birthday party crew did to make it so special:) Love the photos of the kids with the tissue paper art … where was I when this was happening?!! Too cute! Keeping my fingers crossed for the house – can’t wait til you are both here and feeling settled. Enjoy the last bits of summer in Calgary and Canmore, love Deb

    August 15, 2012
    • Thanks, Deb! I’m going to try + take advantage of the prairies for as long as I can!

      August 15, 2012
  6. kenny daddO/Papi nishino #

    Belated, Happy Birthday, Deb, is U read this!!!!!

    August 22, 2012

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