Argyle Piper football victory recounted

Three hundred fans came out on Saturday afternoon to support the Argyle Pipers Senior Football team at their first home game in 31 years. All this Piper pride paid off as the boys in green racked up their first victory in the season, with a score of 36-0 against Eric Hamber Secondary of Vancouver.Here is a post-game wrap-up from co-coach Dave Heskin. Thanks to parent Doug Yip for the photos!

Personally my favourite part of the game was meeting Dave Backie, Argyle’s coach from 1981, who was so happy to be a part of our event. [Ed. note: The Backies are long-time Hoskins Road residents.]

It was also really exciting to see our Grade 12 running back [Stuart Bourne] score our first points of the season in the AA football ranks.

The success of this event was a testament to the hard work by our parent volunteers, staff supporters (teachers and administrators), coaches and especially the players, who really deserved this win.  We have been challenging them to get better as players and as a team each week, and the hard work paid off.

The timing is great as the team now heads into the final third of the season, with two big games against cross-town rivals Windsor and Carson Graham (on the next two consecutive Fridays at their fields). Then they round out the season vs. the #1 provincially ranked John Barsby of Nanaimo on their home field.

Thanks again, Lynn Valley, for all your support!

– Coach Dave Heskin

Black Bear Pub hosts weekly trivia nights

From the pen of Jeffry Huyghebaert, Assistant Manager, Black Bear Neighbourhood Pub

Every Monday night at the Black Bear we run a trivia game for our guests, with questions running the gamut of general knowledge and obscure facts.  There is no cost to play, and teams are encouraged; best to bring a few people with different interests and knowledge than yourself! The only real rule is that Google cannot be one of your teammates.

The game starts at 7:30 p.m., and usually runs until around 9:30 p.m. There are two rounds of fifteen questions per round, and the team with the highest score at the end of two rounds claims the victory, and has a choice between a plate of 24 hot wings or a pitcher of Molson Canadian to celebrate their win.

Besides general knowledge and obscure facts, we occasionally choose to run with a certain theme, which is usually based around a certain event; on Canada Day the theme was Canadiana, during the Olympics the questions were all about Olympic events and history, and around the time of the Oscars we did a night of Movie Quotes.

Next week will mark the 20th week of Black Bear Trivia, which means that our guests will have answered 800 questions since we started playing. The questions themselves come from the staff and managers of the Black Bear, rather than simply being pulled down from a website or lifted from Trivial Pursuit. It’s been a lot of research, a lot of fun, and a lot of being impressed by just how much our guests actually know about really, really random things.

 

 

 

 

An update from the Harris family

Many people in Lynn Valley and beyond were moved to empathy and action by the plight of local mom Erica Harris, who has spent the summer battling an aggressive leukemia that was not responding to treatment. People and agencies moved heaven and earth to find her a bone marrow donor, but when one was finally found, it was determined that her leukemic cell load was still too high to enable a transplant. At that point, Erica was sent home to spend as much time as possible with her husband, Harley, and their two sons. It gives us much pleasure to share with you this update from Harley:

(Please continue to scroll down for a further update, dated Nov. 9, 2012)

Hello to our entire Circle of Love,

We have some very exciting and joyous news to share with you!!!

Firstly, thank you, thank you all for your dedicated and ongoing support of Team Harris – your prayers, thoughts, strength, encouragement and support have been truly uplifting and inspirational.  You are a circle of love for all of us.  

 

Since Erica’s discharge from VGH in-patient care on August 1st, we have spent most of our time exclusively on the homefront enjoying beautiful moments with the boys….with many backyard splash adventures, games of hide and go seek, puzzles, reading, sing alongs etc.. and the simple pleasures Erica loves most of all – being the first smile the boys see each morning and the last to kiss their cheeks as she tucks them in each night.  When the boys sleep/nap, Erica has dedicated herself to creating amazing mementos for our boys – making beautiful scrapbooks, photos, writing letters, making CDs , videos and other many other special memories. 

 

We have also been busy seeking as many wellness options as possible – from our amazing circle of love that surrounds us, we have been introduced to the world of meditation, visualization and healing hands practitioners.  We have become connected with top naturopaths and pharmacists and are following their advice and supplements diligently.  We have been blessed with multiple prayer groups/circles and have even been gifted a beautiful wooden hand held cross of Saint Mary MacKillop (who was credited with curing someone’s leukemia) brought to us from Australia. So many of you have done such extensive research on our behalf for treatments and forwarded us pivotal tips that we have pursued…we apologize if we have not responded to you, but all of the insights and suggestions have been put to great use and we feel so fortunate to have accessed so many healing paths because of your assistance. 

 

The boys have been incredible.   Hudson puts his hands on Erica’s cheeks each night to help heal her and has created a little lego “machine” to help pull the bad weeds (as we have explained the cancer to him) from her body… he massages her back every day and these healing hands are truly miraculous.   He said to Erica the other night all on his own “Mama, you have to believe!”   Hugh loves to rest with mama – giving her the longest snuggles, humming together so beautifully.

Thanks to all of you, the fire within Team Harris to find a cure for Erica and Erica’s unfailing strength, courage, determination, love and faith, she has done much better than the original prognosis given to us on July 31st.  Indeed, our doctors at VGH were so pleased with Erica’s weekly blood test results and recovering “counts”, they ordered a bone marrow biopsy to find out what was happening in Erica’s bone marrow.  The biopsy was yesterday.  We received the results this afternoon.

 

Erica’s July 30th biopsy indicated that there were approximately 25%-30% leukemic (bad) cells in her marrow.

 

To be considered in remission, VGH advised us that patients need to have 5% or less leukemic cells in their marrow. 

 

At VGH they will only do a stem cell/bone marrow transplant if a patient is in remission.

 

Today we learned that the biopsy from yesterday shows that Erica now has less than 3% leukemic cell in her marrow. 

 

This means she is in FULL REMISSION!! 

 

This is the best possible outcome from the biopsy that we all prayed and hoped for.

 

Our doctor had no explanation for this amazing result and said that they had not seen anything like it before.  He asked if Erica had received any treatments in August that we had not informed them of…

 

A miracle.  That is the explanation.  A true, blessed and God-given miracle.

 

In conjunction with our dedicated BMT Coordinator, One Match and all of your support, a 10/10 unrelated stem cell/bone marrow match was found for Erica at the end of July.  This donor is now in the process of being “activated”.   Another donor’s blood is also being tested as a “back up” and we are hopeful that this donor will also be a match for Erica, if necessary. 

 

They are trying to fast track the donor process as much as possible and our doctor is hopeful Erica may be able to start the stem cell/bone marrow transplant process at VGH in October.   The transplant process usually takes approximately 3 months in hospital.

 

We have been truly blessed.   You are all witness to a spectacular and glorious miracle. 

 

Thank you to each and every one of you from the bottom of our hearts.

 

Faith, Hope and Love Always,

Team Harris

Nov. 9, 2012

Status Update
By Harley Harris
Erica Harris – Stem Cell/Bone Marrow Transplant UpdateHello to our Circle of Love,

It has been quite a turbulent ride over the last few weeks. Apologies for not being in touch sooner….

As many of you know, Erica was admitted to VGH Leukemia/BMT ward exactly 3 weeks ago today (October 19th) to start her stem cell/bone marrow transplant – in typical determined Erica fashion, she insisted that we climb the 15  flights of stairs on the way to being admitted…always great to start with a bang… she was blessed with an amazing room, with a panoramic view of downtown Vancouver, False Creek, the North Shore Mountains and all the beauty our city has to offer, and, of course, she was blessed with an incredible and dedicated team at VGH by her side.

The transplant process starts with three days of chemotherapy (using one of the aggressive salvage chemo drugs), three days of TBI (total body radiation – 2 sessions each day) and then the transplant. We were told going in by Erica’s attending doctor that the entire process after the transplant takes many weeks in hospital, with the fastest discharge being 4 weeks after the transplant – but sometimes it can be 3 months or longer in hospital.

Erica persevered well through the chemo, however, she found the twice daily TBI very difficult.

Erica had her transplant 2 weeks ago yesterday (on October 25th) soon after her last TBI treatment. The team at VGH calls it your new birthday. The transplant itself (using the donor’s stem cells) was relatively short in duration (under an hour). All progressed well until the very end when she developed a severe acute allergic reaction…close call.

Through it all, Erica was truly amazing and tenacious – she fought hard every step of the way, keeping as active as possible, using her stepper and crazy heavy medicine ball whenever she could muster up just enough strength. She did laps around the 15th floor tossing her med ball in the air. She endured the usual nausea, retching and lack of appetite with mucositis and ulcers covering her inner mouth and throat yet she was determined to stay off of the IV feeding that caused many problems to her liver in the summer. This meant she needed to eat and keep what she ate down. We were told that transplant patients rarely avoid the IV feeding due to all of the mutiple side effects of the process (including the post transplant immunosuppressant drugs) that cause the very painful mucositis. Yes, you guessed it, Erica was able to keep down enough nutrients on her own to keep the IV feeding away. My incredible wife.

Thanks to the super donor’s super marrow, Erica’s blood counts (white blood cells/hemoglobins/platelets etc.) recovered quickly – as has Erica. Indeed, her condition improved so quickly, we are pleased to share with you that she was officially discharged from VGH this morning (November 9th) on Day +15 post transplant. We were told by VGH team members that this is the fastest discharge they had seen following an unrelated stem cell/bone marrow transplant.

All that said, Erica is still very weak, very tired and her immune system is still incredibly vulnerable. In turn, we will be spending a few weeks at a place we secured near VGH as she gets stronger and more stable. She has a busy day care regimen ahead at the VGH outpatient clinic and she is certainly not out of the woods. A long road lies ahead with many potentials bumps as her new marrow takes hold. The entire engraftment process lasts many months – including daily immunosuppressant and multiple other medications. Her lead doctor indicated that it may take up to 9 months before engraftment is fully confirmed.

We are taking today’s fabulous news and discharge from hospital as a blessed gift from above.

As you know, Erica is happiest in the great outdoors as fresh air means so much to her… she soaked it all in as we left VGH. She had not been outside since she was admited. Today we walked a few blocks, we may try to walk a a few more tomorrow. One day at a time. Together, hand in hand.

Our plan is to surprise the boys tomorrow with a short surprise visit – at Hudson’s soccer game. Erica can’t wait to surprise them and hold them tightly in her arms.

Thank you all for your kind and generous support of Erica and our entire family during this challenging journey. We have cherished your thoughts, prayers and strength and everything that you have done for us. Thank you, thank you, thank you,

May God bless each of you and all of your loved ones.

Faith, Hope and Love Always.

xoxo

LV pest pros tell you how to bug off

By Dylan Wendt, Coast Pest Control

If you have unwanted pests at home and want to try the natural approach before calling a pest control company; then try these tested home remedies.  If they don’t solve your problems, then give the professionals at Coast Pest & Wildlife ControlLtd. a call at 604-908-2040 for a free estimate.

Tip #1 Fruit Flies
For those pesky Fruit Flies grab a bowl and fill with ¼ cup warm water, ¼ cup vinegar,  and 3 to 4 drops of dish soap (be sure to mix with water to activate).  Then cover tightly with plastic wrap and using a fork puncture several holes.  The vinegar smell attracts the Fruit Flies and as they fly into the bowl they become trapped in the mixture and cannot find their way out.

Tip #2 Insects
Keep all foliage cut back from the home by at least six inches to prevent a wide variety of insects from entering the home.  This will provide a chemical-free barrier for the entire perimeter of the home.

Tip #3 Wasps
To help prevent wasps from building a nest in your backyard or patio area, try placing a fake wasp nest that can be purchased at your local hardware store.  This works as a deterrent because wasps are territorial; seeing a nest will prevent them from building another.

Tip #4 Travellers’ Bed Bug Prevention
When travelling, a constant concern for many people is bringing home bed bugs.  To help prevent this, always keep your luggage and clothing off the floor by using either hangers and/or the luggage stands that are provided my most hotels.

Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge celebrates 100 years

BY TRICIA EDGAR: In 2012, Lynn Canyon Park is 100 years old. Let’s go on a walk through the trails of the canyon a century ago. If you’d visited then, what would you have seen?

It’s a sunny day, and you decide to take the small rail car up from the waterfront to get to the park. As you move up the hill toward Lynn Valley, you see small houses that dot the landscape, standing amidst the remains of a giant forest. The tram moves up the road the place where Dempsey and Lynn Valley Road meet today.  You get off the tram and follow the trail into the park. As you walk, you can hear the music of a live band playing in the bandstand and the shouts of laughter from the children playing in the playground.

Huge stumps of Douglas-fir and Western Red Cedar dot the landscape, and small alder trees grow abundantly, surrounded by salmonberries and other sun-loving shrubs.

You buy lemonade for eight cents from the refreshment stand and sit down to enjoy a relaxing lunch in the picnic area under the shade of a few smaller trees.  You hear the water rushing through the canyon and feel the breeze as it blows through alders that line the creek.  You reach into your pocket, looking for 10 cents that will allow you to cross the suspension bridge, a swinging bridge that stands a daunting fifty meters above the rushing Lynn Creek.

This was Lynn Canyon Park when it opened on September 12, 1912.  When Mr. J.P. Crawford originally proposed a park to the McTavish brothers who had logged the area, all parties involved had great real estate dreams of drawing people to Lynn Valley.  Although logging was the main industry in the area, Lynn Valley was still fairly heavily treed and would be a beautiful, sought-after area in which to live.  To create the core of the park, the McTavish brothers made a 12-acre donation which was met with a 10-acre donation from the District Council of North Vancouver.

Their business venture was a huge success, and for seven years the park was a thriving tourist destination. However, just seven short years after the park opened, it changed dramatically.  Following three weeks of straight rain, on November 14, 1919, several acres of land collapsed into the river, bringing with it most of the park infrastructure: the caretaker’s cottage, the bandstand, the refreshment booth, and the picnic tables.

Over time, the park has been rebuilt and transformed again and again by nature and by people. Since 1971, the Lynn Canyon Ecology Centre has provided education for over 2.6 million visitors to the park. The Centre was built in the shape of the Dogwood blossom, B.C’s floral emblem. The Centre provides park visitors with an opportunity to learn even more about this ever-changing wilderness that sits just next door to Vancouver.

Over the last 100 years, the once-tiny firs, cedars, and hemlocks left behind by long ago loggers have grown into huge trees that inspire millions of visitors from around the world. The suspension bridge draws line-ups of visitors every summer, and it’s cheaper than it used to be: it’s free! Today, Lynn Canyon Park conserves 617 acres of temperate rainforest, providing a wilderness oasis on the urban fringe and catering to families, tourists and outdoor enthusiasts alike.

– Tricia Edgar is the Lynn Canyon Ecology Centre’s eduction programmer.

Kids clean up at Earth Day event

FROM EVENT ORGANIZER JODY LABRIOLA: A BIG thank you to all who came out on Saturday and helped with our community garbage pick-up event. It was a success!

We cleaned both fields for Argyle Secondary (and all around the school), Fredrick Road (between Mountain Highway and Fromme), Croft Road (including DNV laneways), Baird (between Fredrick and Wellington) and Wellington. It was so nice to see so many young teens and children. Our next event will take place Saturday, November 3, 2012 – so mark your calendars!

Another BIG thank you to Sugar & Co for donating the prizes for the top three (under 12) garbage collectors and to Lonsdale Creek Daycare Society for donating the snacks that were enjoyed after the event.

We define our landscapes as much as they define us – let’s keep Lynn Valley clean!

**If any Lynn Valley businesses would like to donate prizes, refreshments or snacks for the November event please contact me at jlabrio@telus.net.

Argyle students campaign to stamp out “R” word

BY DENISE NEWALL, STUDENT REPORTER: Argyle Secondary is constantly striving to make the school a safer and more welcoming environment for the entire student body. But now an Argyle club has taken that philosophy and created a campaign and Youtube video it hopes will benefit not just local students, but people in the much-wider world.

Over the years, many clubs and organizations have been established at the school to focus on the improvement of different areas within the Argyle community. Recently, the attention has been directed to Best Buddies, an organization dedicated to enhancing the community through one-to-one friendships between individuals with intellectual disabilities and other students. Simple acts like eating lunch or playing games together have the ability to change the high school experience for all students involved.

Best Buddies’ most recent campaign was the “Spread the Word to End the Word” campaign, a week-long effort to end the use of derogatory words “retard” and “retarded.” Argyle Best Buddies chapter leader Cara McGuire, along with other members, made presentations, encouraged students to pledge, created an awareness video, and more.

By the end of the week, 943 students at Argyle had pledged to Spread the Word to End the Word, and the Youtube video was viewed 2,154 times. With statistics like that, it is safe to say that the campaign was a definitive success.

 

A wall at Argyle displays pledges from students who say they won't use the word 'retard' in a derogatory fashion.

Seniors to munch and mingle at Mollie Nye

BY ANDREA WINTERBOTTOM, Vancouver Coastal Health: For over 20 years the Congregate Meals Program, or “The Diners’ Club,” has been serving nutritious, affordable evening meals to seniors at four North Vancouver locations.

Starting on Wednesday, April 11, this Vancouver Coastal Health program is expanding by offering lunches at Mollie Nye House. To celebrate the launch, North Vancouver District Mayor Richard Walton will be taking part in the inaugural lunch, which begins at noon.

As Mollie Nye House is a hub for Lynn Valley seniors, it felt natural to approach that facility for space to serve lunches. Gillian Konst, Mollie Nye House program coordinator, views this lunch program as a welcome addition to services for seniors in Lynn Valley.

The food (soup and sandwiches) is prepared by the North Shore Culinary School, which operates under Chef Don Guthro on the North Shore. The program offers youth and transitional adults the opportunity to learn skills that will pave the way for them to be meaningfully employed and re-engaged in their community.

The cost of the lunch, including tea or coffee, is $4.00. To reserve your space, please call Andrea at 604-904-6483.
The Congregate Meals Program is looking forward to welcoming you to munch and mingle at Mollie Nye House, which is located at 940 Lynn Valley Rd.

When you munch and mingle
your taste buds tingle
and your brain cells can bloom
when you’re in the room
with many like-minded folk
taking part in conversations that evoke
a pleasant feeling, a community connection that contributes to your overall health and satisfaction.
Your belly is pleased, your mind’s stimulated and eased;
you mingle and munch and you care a whole bunch for all those around you including yourself.
You pay attention to your good health and realize how good you feel when you share a splendid meal.

– Andrea Winterbottom is the Congregate Meals Program Coordinator for Vancouver Coastal Health.

How’s your thyroid these days?

You may already have met our local naturopathic physician, Dr. Sacha Elliot of Canopy Health, in our Merchant Profile section.

Dr. Elliot has kindly sent us an article she’s written for LynnValleyLife readers who may have questions about their thyroid, and what it does, and why you may want to have it checked out if you haven’t been feeling like yourself lately.

Read it online right here, and if you’d like to follow up with Dr. Elliot, take advantage of this coupon to receive a discount on your initial visit.

 

Doctor gives Lynn Valley clean bill of health

BY ANDREA WINTERBOTTOM, Contributing Writer: A recent talk by Dr. O’Connor, Medical Health Officer for the North Shore, helped a group of Lynn Valley residents gauge the health of their neighbourhood.

The talk and slide show (depicting the transformation from Esso Station to Community Square with library, coffee shops and farmers market) centered on building communities that provide healthy choices for all. To achieve that, he said, we need trees, parks, trails, green spaces, libraries, shopping centres, recreation centres, services and jobs nearby. Diversity of housing for all stages of life is another hallmark or a healthy community.

Farmers Market, Lynn Valley

After the talk, participants walked the walk to look at their neighbourhood through a healthy lens. Everybody who joined the social planners and urban planners from the City and the District kept an eye on the key components that Dr. O’Connor had talked about.

After the walk, participants indicated their findings on a ‘rate your community’ thermometer. Categories such as well-lit pedestrian walkways, wheelchair accessible sidewalks, and covered bus stops received high scores; Lynn Valley Square as a safe meeting place for all ages received many accolades.

If you look around Lynn Valley, you will notice that it features most if not all of the components needed to make it a healthy community. Most participants indicated that Lynn Valley is a friendly, bustling community that has climbed high on the ‘rate your community thermometer’ and definitely falls into the category of being a healthy community.