Our Manitoba trip

Janelle and I had the utmost pleasure in getting out to visit our fantastic family out in Manitoba this summer. I got to tell you that every time I end up around Winnipeg in August I totally want to move back…then I visit in February and I’m all good and couldn’t imagine another year there! 🙂

If we do end up going the Tiny House on wheels route we’ll for sure spend a summer out there 🙂

Without further adieu please see the below:




Craik “Eco-village”

One of my primary secondary goals was to visit the village of Craik Saskatchewan during my roadtrip back home this summer, and while I didn’t manage to hit them on the way back I did mange to stop by and catch a few people’s eyes on the way there.

Link to a neat article on Craik can be found here: http://www.greenenergyfutures.ca/episode/craik-eco-village

One of the things that really stood out to me on my roadtrip was how much smaller communities across Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba were suffering and , frankly, slowly dying. Town after town we passed to see all the main business’s boarded up along the highway and churches simply abandoned.

Craik is a forward thinking small village between Regina and Saskatchewan that decided to try to address this problem by offering small parcels of land to people who wanted to do innovative things and relaxed the building codes to facilitate this. Among Craik you would find all kinds of different buildings…from have completed Sea-can (no idea how to spell) inspired houses to barns to strawbale to tiny houses…  One of the people I met there described it as a workshop experiment on living and after spending an afternoon there I would agree. Some of the homes were owned by pretty “white picket fence” type peoples while others were owned by “back to the earth” permaculture types letting grass grow wild.

I’d like to thank the people of Craik (those I ran into) for allowing me to snoop around their small community and get a grasp on the sheer amount of fortitude and work that would go into something like this. You will often see me stress how important community is to achieving a level of satisfaction in life. I hope to be an annual visitor to your small and promising community!


A very nice video on Gimli, Manitoba



This BBC News series focuses on aspects of life in countries and cities around the world. What may seem ordinary and familiar to the people who live there can be surprising to those who do not.

The Canadian town of Gimli is known as “New Iceland” because the area was settled by Icelandic immigrants in the late 1870s and has kept its Icelandic heritage, customs and language.

Now, with their homeland suffering economic troubles, a fresh wave of Icelanders is arriving in the area seeking work.

Brandy Yanchyk visited Gimli to get a taste of the town and find out why people feel at home 3,000 miles away from Reykjavik.

Public Speaking

As a couple of you may know I am Icelandic guy….who has recently become a lot more interested in my cultural roots. I’ve been working here in Edmonton for the last year on the board of directors for the Icelandic Canadian Club of Edmonton…a great group of people with a great facility and a bunch of good events they put on throughout the year.

Growing up in Gimli, Manitoba Iceland was always around…..such a huge community and almost more common to see the Icelandic flag flapping in the wind that the Canadian maple leaf…I was surprised to see such a strong community here in Edmonton as well.

My house growing up pretty much had this view from the backyard….

Over the weekend I got the opportunity to see some of the best music I have EVER seen at the Starlite room here in Edmonton…a great organization called “IcelandNaturally” brought in a handful of musical acts that just blew me away.


Jon Karason totally blew my mind, check out some of his videos here:


On Sunday though it was my turn to try to contribute a bit at the Icelandic Film Fest at the Garneau theatre, so I got up in front of about 250 people and spoke a few words, I want to mention that I consider myself a strong public speaker…I’m a third degree green belt toastmaster or something and a professional salesman so you wouldn’t think it would phase you too much..but I got to tell you I almost pee’d my pant’s up there…it’s crazy being on stage when you can’t really see or connect to people but you know you are being watched by everyone in the room.

Anyways…that’s it for now…hope you like the blog thing.

Movies I enjoy

I’ve always meant to put up a list somewhere of great films that I’ve enjoyed. Partially because one does tend to forget them and because in this day and age physical medium’s are going to become rarer and rarer. One of the things I really took away from reading through “The minimalists” books was their 20/20 philosophy.


In this particular case I am applying it to dvd’s….I’ve really reduced my collection way down but those that I have I don’t watch…hell…half the time they are on netflix and it’s just easier to stream them..or I just forget and go and rent something instead of flipping through a binder of things I’ve already seen…

So the below list is a collection of my favorite films (with a few guilty pleasures thrown in as well).

*I’ll be adding some to this and editing it as I go along.

Monsters (Stunningly beautiful)
that old one visits houses and pretends to be rich…french film….wish I knew the title…
Four rooms


Wristcutters: A Love Story
Midnight in Paris
Jesus Camp
The Castle
Easy Company movie
In Bruges
Office Space
Waking Ned Devine
The Great Wild Outdoors
Lock Stock & Two smoking barrels
The Grand Hotel Budapest
The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
Little Miss Sunshine
All is Lost
The Big Lebowski
No Country for Old Men
The Road
The Wild (Christopher McCandles)
The one were he freezes naked ladies in the mart

anthing guy ritchie

spirited away

princess mononoke

fight club

one week

children of men

30 days of night

in bruges

28 days of later

the beach