A Quilters Story

Welcome back to Valerie’s Variety Podcast with your host me, Valerie Moss this show is about ReViews, InterViews and my Daily Views. It’s a story podcast about my life in Calgary, WhatEVER | WhenEVER. The show drops every Tuesday.

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a collection of stories about quilters

Todays show I’m sharing some inspiration that I’ve been going through. It’s been 5 years since I went on a quilting retreat. Yes people I quilt. I used to go every year sometimes twice but lately life’s been busy work has held me back and honestly I hadn’t been quilting or sewing as much since I closed my business. This girl needed a break. Turned the chapter, we had some severe life changes, made some new goals went back to school, moved, cut off my hair and more life changing decisions. So quilting retreats and quilting was tabled.

Recently, I regained my fire for being a quilter and called up a couple of close friends from my sewing/quilting life to see if they wanted to join me on a retreat. Dusted of my sewing machine, took out some kits and I was ready and excited, we set off car loaded with projects, I felt renewed.

When was the last time you felt renewed a bit like your old self, feeling inspired and creative? I love to C*R*E*A*T*E plan, change things up (like my dishes as you know). I found this part of my creativity back and I was excited.

We nestled into this lodge in Coleman at the retreat house, Country Encounters. this place is run by a husband and wife team and family. It’s a huge home over 20 rooms, great facility over 100 years old plus they have a new modern hotel across the street. We stayed heer in a lovely suite with two rooms, fireplace seating area, kitchen gorgeous bathroom with a computerized shower that was hilarious to figure out, claw footed tub etc. Beds were cozy and it’s was a great place to rest after a hard day and night of quilting.

We setup in a great room, boasting a wall of windows, fire place, bar area (that we used well) as well as two lovely washrooms. picture A frame ceilings with exposed beams, tables and sun mixed with women from all over Calgary, Chestermere, Strathmore, Fernie.

One thing about retreats is you get to know people at a different level. People feel comfortable to open up with you, you can have room conversations with everyone or just get to know the lady beside you. People are making gifts for friends, themselves, siblings, people dying of cancer – you just never know what the purpose is of their project.

For me I wanted to have the feeling of a sisterhood back – I got this. I wanted to sew and visit all night with great friends – I got this chance to. I wanted to finished a couple of projects like:

  • Every Bunny’s Welcome at The Moss’: a very Easter themed quilt that I designed years ago 2012 and ran it as a mystery block of the month club through my store. I started and stopped so many times throughout the years. I got this quilted and finished – just need the binding to put on now. It’s full of hand stitched Easter eggs and bunnies, chicks, appliquéd on it – it’s a Great Wall hanging for any room during the Easter Season
  • Easter Bunny: this small wall hanging I started making I think in 2003, and I’ve always wanted to finish it – finally got the hand stitching completed. Small cute little bunny with big floppy years protecting his Easter egg
  • My Tuffet Kit – my friend Alison she bought these kits for us. Do you know what a Tuffet is? It’s a short foot stool with little bun feet. They are put together in a striped assembly of fabric. Quite a stunning focal point in any room. You can sit on them as they are wide enough approx 18″ across and soft enough approx 18″ tall or just use them as a foot stool. My hubby said you could put a hand bashed copper plate on top and set a plant on it – great idea hubby
  • Plaid Lap Robe quilt kit: my mum put this together for me, it’s all paper pieced with homespun plaids, some of them are even my step dads shirts. Such a cute kit. I dug this out and got a few blocks put together. I have plans for this quilt I want to make it a summer quilt for my bed. This quilt boasts a log cabin feel and in my ultra modern room – what a focal point this will be.
  • Truly Scrumptious: This quilt holds a special place in my heart. Long before I had my beautiful daughter I had suffered a miscarriage – even to write this I can feel tears. This was a block of the month club I ran through my quilting store (Pastimes Online). Fast forward 5 years later of trying we finally with outside intervention conceived, then failed, then conceived..and planted a little girl. So while I made this quilt all these years prior I made this with the hopes one day I’d have a girl to give this to. So I’ve kept the finished quilt top tucked away and recently showed London, my 7 yo daughter – she loved it. She doesn’t know this back story yet but one day she will. I asked her to help pick fabrics for the back of the quilt so, here we are in my quilting storage room going through fabrics what cute sounds from her ‘ oh mom I just love this with the bees’ or ‘mom can you add this it matches see’ and ‘this and this and that and this’ then she says, ‘mom I’m getting carried away’. This beautiful backed pieced with fabrics she loves.
  • Charm Candy Bag: this is a cute little lunch bag that I needed as my current bag is falling apart. I should clarify I’m not much of a lunch eater since switching to the OmAd (one meal a day) eating regime..anyway I made this bag with beautiful fabrics, silks and some machine quilting, cording for the straps, a small pocket inside – voila I love it! It’s approx. 10″h x 6 x 6 just enough to fit a water bottle or two, a snack or two

Those are my projects so just a touch of finishing for some and get into the finished piecing for others. I’m already using my bag and I’m still working on the plaid quilt top.

One thing about retreats is the stories about these people I love. As you might know by now I’m a pretty connected person, I like to get to know people on an intimate level, I’m curious and respectful.

Brown Eyed Suzy

One of the ladies at this retreat I’ve known for a while I’m going to refer to her as Brown Eyed Suzy. There’s something calming about her, I love how she talks, her voice is solid to me. She’s a reassuring person. I really like her. She worked as a porter at the hospital for years (like 30 years) and recently retired. She’s confident and sure of her thoughts.

She was working on some quilts talking about her kids, I knew she had kids and was married or as least I thought she was. Her and her Beau have been together for 42 years but never married legally. Her mom, was so embarrassed by this that she made up a married date for Brown Eyed Suzy in the family album – crazy hey.

Once I got talking to her she was telling me about her son. He’s not in a very good place has some addiction issues and has been in and out of jail most of his life. Brown Eyed become emotional as did I, she loves her son deeply and is so scared for him and his choices. He tells his mom that he loves the high of drugs and the thrill of the steal. She says to me he tells me too much and she doesn’t want to know these things. She’s had to set boundaries but yet be his mom – wow what a hard decision to make.

Southern Bell

Southern Bell I met years ago at another retreat, she’s got blond hair, bang and red rimmed glasses, she has a huge small and a very contagious laugh. Her purpose in life is her grandkids and her sons. She has a big Bermese mountain Dog that she adores and has had I think she said 7 of these dogs through her life. She’s travel with her army husband all over the world and talks about these amazing places she’s been. Germany, France, England, Croatia and more. She has a son that suffers with severe schizophrenia who’s disappeared for weeks and months at a time. BUT she told me a story at the lunch table that will blow your socks off…listen to this. She has a daughter that was shot by her boyfriend and then shot himself in front of her.


Southern Bell at the time was living in the Meritimes and this daughter was living in Ontario. The daughter was struggling with a controlling boyfriend and had finally separated from him. The story goes something like this, she was out one night and on her way home, it was dark, she always circled the blocks around her house row by row looking for his vehicle in a radius of 6 blocks one block circle at a time…she had done this routine faithfully. She opening her front door and he was inside already – waiting. He grabbed her at gun point, made her strip down and he proceeded to shoot her through the neck and out the shoulder, two bullet shots. She then still alive witnessed him shoot himself in her apartment.

When the police showed up at Southern Bell’s home in the middle of the night – she thought they were there to deliver news about her son with skitzophrenia that had been lost for many months but no, they were there to share this news about her daughter. Southern Bell was days away with a husband shipped off in the war somewhere…

How do you live through things like this? This story as I’m sitting at the lunch table brought me to tears. Her very daughter was shot – and lived – and witnessed this indescribable trauma. They both Southern Bell and the daughter still suffer from ptsd it’s only been about 10 years. This boyfriend has made a mark a scar truly on this young women body and her family that will never be forgotten.

The Horticulturist

This lady is a dear friend of mine, she’s funny and serious like me. I’ve known her and quilted with her for many years like 15 years. We’ve shared stories about life and work and kids. She was there for me when Jeff had his surgery. She has one son, been married for 30 some years. She’s a friend that you can just let go and be yourself with, she slightly older than me so I lean on her for advice, she’s genuine, thoughtful and caring. She’s struggling with parenting her mid-twenty year old son. he’s lost in life, not really any goals or direction, maybe no motivation. He’s feisty and his mom can be feisty back. She helps where she can, he takes what he wants from her. She wants the world for him, she wants him to be happy, healthy and find his way.

This is weighing on my friend the planter, she, like most of us compares her parenting skills to other people that influence her life like her siblings, her friends, and in-laws. In the end, it has to be your life that you are in control of not someone else’s. Her son, is in his mid-twenties going though pre-adulthood – is this the right word?. He needs to find his way, on his own. Get a job, get a place, get a goal, ambitions and maybe have a passion. My green thumb friend, wants the world for him, it crushes her that he can’t settle, find his groove, be responsible, have his own life. It’s heavy and makes her upset, angry at times. As parents we can only do so much…I adore her for her strength and her undying commitment to her son with boundaries.

This plant lady was working on the tuffet project with me together, she was also working on the beginnings of a t-shirt quilt for her friend that has cancer, such a purposeful project.


Do you have any Gingers in your life. My friend with her red hair has been through things in life. First she was married, moved and had her first baby right away, her and her hubby lived in quite a large home 4 or 6 bedrooms, then she had her second baby. We’re quilting friends. She’s always been one of my hugest fans and supporters – thank you as I know you’re listening.

Her husband had a daughter years prior who was now back in his life and Ginger’s by proxy. this daughter was about 16 at the time and threw these two parents into teenager hood long before their in due time natural course. My friend, was having some challenges with this – this teen ended up moving out several months later…

Ginger’s husband came up to her one day and shared that he was gay. She as his wife, wondered why he liked the movie “broke back mountain” so much and now she had her answers. You know, this friend of mine, accepted her hubby’s ways with respect. Obviously, life is taking a crazy turn for her, selling their home, finding her new home and accepting this change, single mother hood and all.

She’s been on her own now with both kids, dad has been around here and there but not really a staple in their lives. The kids are incredible, smart and established and grounded. One moving off to pursue education dreams which my friend is sad and excited – the other still finishing high school – which my friend is grateful she still has one at home.

This red-headed friend of mine also just lost 50 pounds on the keyto diet and she couldn’t be more proud of herself. I wish the world for her, she’s such a neat grounded person. She too has a great laugh and the loudest hiccups. Her ginger hair the same as when I met her 15 years ago, her love for the Beatles has never died. She is true to herself and empowered from what she’s been through. This lady travels by herself, like I mean goes on cruises, enjoys bands and does and goes where she wants. We shared a room – she’d leave the light on for me every night as she to bed early. Thank you.

She was working on stitching projects that she discovered she needed glasses now to see – as the project was from several years back – lol she could see better with glasses – don’t we know how this feels.

Green Eyes

This lady is upbeat, she’s looking for purpose, most of the gals here know her story. Been a quilter for so many years but shelved it for quite a few. Likes to gab and connect with people. One lady asked her about her husbands heart surgery, Green Eyes explained what had happened and the sadness and anger she went through. How he was just 47 years old and their daughter was not even 2.

Brown Eyed Suzy asked about his health now and they got to chatting about changing their eating and lifestyle No meat cooked in there house – she was aghast at this – saying her hubby would like die if he never ate meat lol. Such a funny reaction. She was so curious about their pescatarian diet and eating raw veggies and only 1 meal a day (OMaD). Most of the ladies new green eyes mom as she would bring her to these retreats.

This pair of green eyes would laugh and have a great time. But then the older set of green eyes wouldn’t respond to requests or text or invitations. This mom would disappear and not be involved – suffering from her own personal traumas. Not be available for her daughter for a while. It’s been a few years since this daughter and mother have been together at a retreat laughing and enjoying. These women knew this feeling, everyone had a story.

This is me and a shortened version of my story.

Burnt Sienna

As we were leaving the lunch table I noticed on one of the ladies arms that she had this amazing scar covering the entire inside of her forearm. This scar looked like years had passed over it. I said to her sort of secretly as we were walking back to the great room – the room where our projects came to fruition – what happened?

She said when she was 8 she dumped a pot of coffee onto her arm and burnt the skin right off. Remembering the pain to this day likely 50 years or so later how it felt when they were picking the gauze out of the infection. Then she healed. Her parents took her to see a plastic surgeon at 13 to have this scar repaired. They described the surgery as cutting skin from the insides of her thighs and grafting it onto of her arm…nope she didn’t want to go through with this pain again or anymore. Sienna accepted her scar. It doesn’t bother her – it’s just part of her.

What would you do, would you have this scar fixed?

There was many other ladies at this retreat but these are the stories that have sort of stuck with me. This gathering of women who have this hobby in common, drives us to be together and share what we are working on and the cathartic nature of what we do – it’s our sort of therapy. When you are open to a room, receiving the room, they will receive you back, no judgements. Empower each other and build them up, it’s so important in life to value the moment, and be in the moment. These ladies impact me and change me, they teach me and make me reflect on my parenting style or my choices. The plant lady she said to me one of these nights that I am the best mother she knew…brought me to tears.

Do you have a group of people that you cherish, think of them whether family friends or colleagues. These people make you feel real, grounded and slightly open to sharing your life, good and bad with them. These are true people that you need in your life.

Tell me about your story of friendships that impact you deeply or a story that someone told you once that you think about every once in a while. These are the stories that build up our characters, we can reflect, use, take home to the bank!

The loops for this show is provided through GarageBand, thanks to Jason Schnell for my theme music. Tascam 40 – my very own music made just for me. Thanks to Kim, Alison, Pat, Colleen, Kathy and all the ladies that have inspired my story and taught me, shared with me and involved into their personal feeling.

Follow me on Instagram Facebook and Pinterest and share my podcast, I love sharing Tuesdays with you – reach out to me and tell me your story.

Thanks for listening.

The Messiest Body Scrub – BUT it’s worth it!

Two Minute Tuesdays on Valerie's Variety Podcast...
Two Minute Tuesdays Cover Art…

Episode 55

Two minute Tuesday TMTs Segment I’m featuring my favourite body scrub – a quick and dirty cheap body scrub. This is for all the girls, gals, ladies and guys if you want to have soft radiant skin. I love to exfoliate – like I mean a good scrub on my body to get all of the dead skin off, arms, legs mostly and face – neck, plus it feels really good.

Coffee and Extra Virgin Coconut Oil

I always save my used coffee grounds from my Keurig, we use a re-useable cup for our machine and scoop the coffee into this instead of the dreadful disposable cups. Anyway if you let this reusable cup sit overnight it will be dry and powdery. You tap the top of the cup and the ground just pour out – clean.


I have a red cylinder vase that looks nice on the counter that holds all of my use coffee grounds. Stirring occasionally with a chop stick to ensure it’s dry through. I transfer this to a tupperware to use in the shower. I found a small glass toy coffee cup that I use as my scoop- this probably holds a teaspoon, you could use any small scoop but it’s nice if it has a handle – easier to scoop the coffee out of the tupperware with wet hands. The tupperware size I’m talking about is like 1 measuring cup – not very big. The 2nd tupperware I have holds my Extra Virgin Coconut oil maybe half a cup. This is my favourite moisturizer to use, daily.

What to do

While in the shower, bring your ‘coffee’ tupperware with scoop in with you. Rinse off your body take a small scoop of coffee in your hand, moisten it slightly – you should have enough that coats both hands, and proceed to rub this into your legs, feet, bum, back, arms, keep getting more coffee as needed. The natural oils from the coffee also provide moisture. I also use this on my face. Please test an area of your body like you arm or your thigh first to ensure you don’t have any reaction. Scrub as firm as you want. I just love this good scratch, exfoliating on the body.

It’s Messy!

Warning, this is a message scrub, leaves your shower with little coffee grinds but it’s worth it! Also try ti limit the amount of water that gets into your container in the shower as it will mould. So, if you do get water just leave open on your bathroom counter over night giving it a stir with a chopstick or something dry until it’s dry through, easy!

Let me know if you try this out and what you think. check out my site for pictures of my containers. We use the presidents choice dark roast coffee (pssst better than Tim Hortons or MacDonalds). And just your over the counter extra virgin coconut oil from any grocery store, it’s like $10.

Until next Tuesday

Valerie’s Variety Podcast is a story podcast about my life in Calgary. ReViews, InterViews and my Daily Views. WhatEVER | WhenEVER. The show drops every Tuesday.

Follow me on Instagram | Pinterest | Facebook

Instagram @ValerieJMoss

Pinterest @VJMoss

Facebook @ValeriesVarietyPod

Brekkie Cafe

Episode 54

Today I’m sharing my ReView of Brekkie Cafe, located at 120 120 Westpark Way SW. Brekkie Cafe boasts – A Glorious Break in Your Day! It’s a beautiful Cafe high ceilings, lots of windows and light. The food is fresh, wholesome and beautifully displayed on the plates.

Welcome back to Valerie’s Variety Podcast with your host me, Valerie Moss this show is about ReViews, InterViews and my Daily Views. It’s a story podcast about my life in Calgary, WhatEVER | WhenEVER. The show drops every Tuesday.

Follow me on Instagram | Pinterest | Facebook

Instagram @ValerieJMoss

Pinterest @VJMoss

Facebook @ValeriesVarietyPod

This is a great place to check out for breakfast, there’s a bit of a wait to get in but it’s worth it. The service is pretty good, you can tell people like to be there. They are happy and the people in this place range from father daughter duos, to families, to first dates. It’s got a good vibe in there.

Our Order

We order the avocado toast to start, which comes out in colours of purple and green. London Fogs to drink and I order the breakfast sandwich, Jeff orders either the lobster Benny or the Wild Mushroom Benny, London goes for the French toast that you heard at the top of the show! All the food is positioned just right on the plate. Theirs pride here and you can feel it and it’s noticeable.

No wait is no longer available Jeff tells me, if you’re not familiar with the ‘no wait’ app – which provides you a spot in line when you are on route to a restaurant or want to get in ahead of the crowds you could put your name in this app for your favourite dining spot – called no wait. You can monitor your position in line and it gives you a time when to be at the restaurant. It was bought out by Yelp for $40 million dollars.


When you sit in this place it has super high ceilings, there’s benches and tables and chairs, there’s plants everywhere as well as stacks of fresh bananas, avocados displays on teired platters. There’s a giant shelf made out of orange pipe and wooden planks. with plants and decorations – this shelf is separating the restaurant from one side to the other. But it’s open yet has a purpose. the charts are kind of retro in a mint green shade. The table too are retro with a aluminum trim around the sides. The cutlery is wrapped in linen napkins, don’t you just love a real napkin instead of the paper kind.

Great shelf separating the space, still open and full of nice decor.

I just love their brekkie logo, its the word BREKKIE spelled out in capital letters kind of a block style of bring and then the CA-FE is stacked at the end. Since this place is located in a strip mall kind of setting, there’s a few doors to go in but like most places- both doors to not open. One of the doors has a great saying in white vinyl “I’m not a swinger BUT the other door is with an arrow pointing to the other door.

door at BREKKIE CaFe, so funny!
Love the logo at BREKKIE CaFe, nicely done!

We notice the owner is sitting in one of the tables. He’s wearing chef whites prepared with papers and his planning journal.

Thanks for listening to my review today, of the BREKKIE cafe . Check out my website for pictures of BREKKIE Cafe and did you know you can text me to my email @ValerieMoss.ca.

Follow me on Instagram | Pinterest | Facebook

Instagram @ValerieJMoss

Pinterest @VJMoss

Facebook @ValeriesVarietyPod

If there’s a place you’d like me to ReView let me know…maybe I can meet you there and we can ReView it over a glass of wine and your favourite menu item. Talk to you next Tuesday.

The Best Bread

Episode 53

Today I’m going to share my bread recipe. This is what I like about my ‘variety’ show, it allows me the platform to share stories about WhatEver-WhenEver and provides you with randomness of information.

Welcome back to Valerie’s Variety Podcast with your host me, Valerie Moss this show is about ReViews, InterViews and my Daily Views. It’s a story podcast about my life in Calgary, WhatEVER | WhenEVER. The show drops every Tuesday.

Follow me on Instagram | Pinterest | Facebook

Instagram @ValerieJMoss

Pinterest @VJMoss

Facebook @ValeriesVarietyPod

5 years ago Subway made headlines, not for their great tasting sandwiches, not for their over 33,000 locations beating McDonalds by over 1000 but for the chemical used in their bread. Their staple ingredient, the mere platform that everything at Subway relies and lies upon – their bread. This bread contains very bad ingredients. Referring to this ingredient by the tag-name of “yoga-mat”. The chemical name is azodicarbonamide or ADA which btw is contained in over 500 recipes and not just bread. In the plastics industry ADA is the chemical foaming agent. It is mixed into polymer plastic gel to generate tiny gas bubbles, something like champagne for plastics. The results are materials that are strong, light, spongy and malleable – like a yoga-mat.

This got me thinking, I did some research on a loaf of bread in any grocery store and I was pretty educated on the amount of chemicals in the everyday bread we buy in a grocery store and most of them contained azodibarbonamide – not just Subway!

So, I decided right then and there that I would start making my own bread. Jeff was on board. Who doesn’t like a fresh loaf of bread smelling good and tasting even better. We even have a song ‘jam bun jam bun’ and it goes to the jingle of old Cops shows. bad boys bad boys whatcha gonna do…I digress.

Bread Machine

Cuisinart Bread Machine, a staple for making bread in my house!

We purchased a bread machine as I knew better then to try and time rising. This bread machine isn’t anything fancy, it’s the Cuisinart Bread Machine. You can purchase it on Amazon for about $160 and if you’re a prime member shipping is free. I bought ours about 5 years ago at Home Outfitters – for $200 but according to their website all stores are closing and they have huge sales so you might be able to pick one up from there for a good price.

Since I’ve had this bread maker I’ve made 2 loaves a bread a week, sometimes more but this is pretty typical. That’s over 520 loaves of break with this same machine.

You must put the ingredients into the bread maker or your mixing bowl in this order and this recipe is for a medium size of loaf. I found this to be the best size for the bread machine.

French Bread Ingredients – Standard White

Water, Table Salt, Bread Flour, Measuring Cups & Spoons, Amaranth Flour
Water, Table Salt, Bread Flour, Measuring Cups & Spoons, Amaranth Flour (maybe)
  • (x1) Cup, (x1)TBsp of water – room temp (I actually use the water from the Keurig holding tank)
  • (x3) 1/4 teaspoons white table salt
  • (x2) Cups, (x1) 1/3 Cup, (x1) TBsp of Bread Flour – I use bread flour as it’s seems to rise the best and taste the best. You can use all purpose but it’s not as good, in this picture on my site I’m showing a small bag of Amaranth flour, I will sometimes add a Tbsp of this within the cup measurement of the bread flour just adds a different element.
  • make a well in the flour to add your yeast
  • (x2) Teaspoons of Dry Active Yeast

Then set your Cuisinart bread machine to menu 5 – French Bread, and in 3:15mins you’ll have warm hot-made bread.

ReView of the Cuisinart Bread Machine

Since I’ve had this bread machine for so long I love it, it does what it needs to do and is very reliable. It’s noisy as it mixes away, beeps to add ingredients and to take the paddle out. It’s looks good on the counter and it has these great rubber feet that secure it while it does it’s mixing. It has 15 menu options, you can even make jams.

Taking the paddle out is such a nice treat if you can get to it. I usually make the bread when I’m away from the house or overnight as it’s noisy so I can’t take the paddle out. Leaving this metal flipper inside the bread when the bread is done baking, while removing the bread the paddle keeps a chunk of the bread so there’s a slight hole in the middle – doesn’t change the flavour.

We also use a bread box to store our newly fresh, cooled loaf in. Did you know you’re not supposed to store bread in the fridge? This makes the bread dry out and stale faster. It’s best to store bread in room temperature. So I found this box, it’s a teal tin bread box on Amazon for about $35. as it’s the perfect size for the exact loaves I make. When purchasing a bread box for your bread be cognizant of the size, they typically come very large-long and shallow, it’s weird. So just a heads up.

Thanks for hanging out with me today. Bread is a girls best friend, we eat it as a comfort food, men like big manly sandwiches – who doesn’t really. Bread some in so many shapes and sizes, with so many ingredients. But as a daily staple in my house anyway, we love our simple 4 ingredient bread recipe, we know there’s no ‘yoga-mat’ chemical in it and it’s pretty wholesome, yes we could argue and get into the gluten factor and the processing of the flour however…lets stick with this fresh white bread slathered in true organic salted butter.

My auntie Cher told a story about her gramma making loafs and loafs of bread – likely because they had so many kids…she had these giant arms (like the hugest ‘hi helens’) and she’s snap those loaves into this brisk twist and put them onto the large butchers block French country table for rising. Auntie said that you didn’t get near her gramma’s arms while she was making bread or you might have a ‘cuff’ upside the body by getting into her work space, such a cute memory.

My daughter, London growing up with fresh bread in the house is so funny, mum can you buy these store buns they are so yummy! ugh isn’t this such as life..grass is greener somewhere else.

The CourtRoom

Episode 52

Todays show is about my first courtroom experience and the people I shared this with. I was by proxy along for the ride.

Welcome back to Valerie’s Variety Podcast with your host me, Valerie Moss this show is about ReViews, InterViews and my Daily Views. It’s a story podcast about my life in Calgary, WhatEVER | WhenEVER. the Show drops every Tuesday.

Follow me on Instagram | Pinterest | Facebook

Instagram @ValerieJMoss

Pinterest @VJMoss

Facebook @ValeriesVarietyPod

First, I stood inline to fill out the Affidavit (positively being watched on the high security in the courthouse) I had to swear on a Bible to ensure I was documenting the truth. While standing in line I witnessed all kinds of people suing all kinds of other people who weren’t there. Renters suing Landlords, Landlords suing tenants for skipping on rent. Business owners suing developers. People standing nervous at the window and not knowing how to fill out the documentation (like myself) properly. It’s stressful, you’re watching busy people going here and there.

On the glass on the wickets there’s the usual barrage of signs saying ‘new hours’ but it’s dated 2015….How long do you display a new notice for…3 years – also rudeness won’t be tolerated? The signs are peeling up slightly and obviously old. The people working behind the counter are dressed so casually, not really really weekend attire but more casual then you’d expect from working as a clerk in a courthouse. they are helpful however they don’t sound like they know why you have to fill out things just that you do. There’s no depth to the answers they are canned and repeated over and over day after day…

Then you wait for the next step something comes in the mail.

We sat in the conference call, the next point to this civil court case. The judge, a women had no patience for the lack of organization shown. The original person who started this process is no longer available and so I was granted the task. .I have no history with the story besides people telling me the story. I request to be excused by the Judge and she…carries on to discuss the matters with the other knowledgeable parties I’m sitting with. We get our hands slapped. The judge is not interested in the adjustment in the people thus causing us not to appear in court when scheduled a month or so prior to this conference call…and therefore the counter claim is adhered to by default.

So this means that we sued a client who didn’t pay his bill, we plaintiff failed to appear in court on said day. So we have to sit in this conference call with claimant and ‘not happy’ judge. She’s tough and scolds us for our lack of consideration and wasting the courts time. The judge asks us to get in touch with claimant directly. Who is also on the phone witnessing us get lectured by the judge – he gets this front row seat. She, the judge asks that we settle this outside of the courts time. We end the conversation likely after she does…sit and ponder this for a moment, then proceed to call the claimant – in short that did not go smooth either. This is all before noon on a Friday.UGH.

So we wait for the next court date to get granted – and we finally appear in court on time ahead of schedule and was…it shows the whole listing on the screen outside the courtroom. There’s a few parties along with us. We see a few people waiting amongst us at the small benches but not the claimant. If you have a court date to appear in court you need to be there or by default the party who doesn’t appear loses. So…we all head into court together, the clerk – in attire similar to the judges greets us all 1 x 1.

The courtroom is like you see in th movies, its oak, the judge is sitting up higher then the rest of the room slightly. The clerk is the next level down with computers and chairs and a large wide desk. Then there’s a witness box to the right while facing the judge. There’s a podium directly in front of us in the exact center of the room with microphone. it’s quiet in there, the clerk puts us at ease by engaging us for specific questions. There’s signs everywhere saying ‘you are being recorded’ and ‘ these microphones are live’ out group is nervous – well some of our are. The other groups are also nervous or slightly antsy.

We are sitting in the very front row where the public sits. We will be last as our is classified more like a trial. The other two parties there – will be first.

Case 1

Landlord versus tenant – the Tenant appears but the Landlord doesn’t show. This man is requested to come up an stand in the witness box. He’s quiet spoken. The clerk requests him to swear on whichever ‘bible’ he chooses – he chooses the Koran. The clerk is fumbled because she doesn’t have a ‘swear’ script for the Koran – the judge assists her with this lack of preparedness and ensures she can use whatever ‘swear’ script is available. The Tenant swears and this case proceeds.

The Tenant is suing the landlord for not providing enough notice to move?

The case is in favour of the tenant and the judge does the math outloud and lays it all our- the tenant is happy and the case is closed.

Case 2

Business Owner Suing Client

This business owner is approx. 30-35 years old, he’s well prepared with all sorts of bank statements. Letters of promise, calendar entries in the bank etc – a whole mittful of paperwork. His story goes like this…this company was hired to fly-out to assist in helping Saskatchewan during the fire season with a crew, plane and supplies equipment. This crew was from Calgary and they needed to fly up north in SASK to assist in putting out forest fires. Business owner was out of pocket said money and proved by contracts, bank statements etc. The company that hired them said he’d pay for all mentioned above and signed contracts etc. The business owner had EFTs sent to him consecutively every two weeks except the last two promised payments. This is what he was suing for plus the judge granted some payment for the pain in the ass expenses.

the Judge ruled in his favour and submitted the documents.

Case 3

Our case, the claimant didn’t show up…we were granted in favour. I’m not going to disclose our case as I work for this company and to protect their privacy I’ll leave it out.

Then fast forward appeared in the courtroom with said someone…this is the first time I’ve ever been in a courtroom. I LOVED it however was nervous and had anxiety but still my first time was pretty cool, have you been in a courtroom? If you have tell me your story.

I’m a Daughter without a Mother

Episode 51

Welcome back to Valerie’s Variety Podcast with your host me, Valerie Moss this show is about ReViews, InterViews and my Daily Views. It’s a story podcast about my life in Calgary, WhatEVER | WhenEVER. The show drops every Tuesday.

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A personal Journey into Motherhood.

Todays episode is about being a daughter to a Father. When I was 6 months old and my sister was 2.5 years old our parents got a divorce. They were married young and life was a mix mash of selfish teenagerhood-young adult life – neither being sure footed. Embracing the fact that change is inevitable. Resulting in them – my two parents going their separate ways. We, my sister and I lived with my dad – full time.

I saw my mom sometimes growing up but not many times. We didn’t see her regularly at Christmas or special occasions. We saw her sometimes at my auntie Kathy’s house (her sisters). This was my life, saw her sometimes. When I met my husband about 20 years ago he asked me how many times in my life had I seen my mom…I said maybe a few dozen times – I was 23 years old when he asked me this question. When I would see her mostly it was good. She’s connected and engaged. I think I spent only one Christmas with her. Probably the best time(s) I have with her is since I’ve been an adult. When we are sewing, quilting and retreating together. She loves to come, we stay up all night visiting, sharing the same bed even. I taught her how to quilt, she taught me how to stitch.

The challenging part about this is that you need to reach out to her like over a dozen times to a) actually get a response this can be by call, voice male, text, email etc etc. Finally she’d respond. This went on for about 7 years or so…connecting was awesome being with my mom was awesome – trying to get this to work was always on me. I initiated it all and still do.

Then nothing for the last 2 or 3 years NOTTA

Recently I was caught again. Shame on Me. It has been about 2 years or so since I’ve spoken to my mom. I’ve reached out sent videos of my daughter, texts, email, calls. NOTTA. She doesn’t respond. For my 40th birthday my hubby invited her to my party, no response, my auntie was coming so she reached out to my mom, no response.I Sung her happy birthday on voice mail, wished her Merry Christmas. All of it and NOTTA. This starts to weigh on a girl, you know? So finally I get frustrated and fed up and sad so I stop reaching out, then I feel guilty and the cycle starts all over again.

How was I caught? I fell for it, I let my emotions get to me, I got…excited because guess what? She texted me back. Yep the first time in years. So, I was excited I sent her a note back immediately thanking her for her response I thought to acknowledge her would be a good step. I had asked if we could meet in Red Deer for lunch – this is approx the same distance driving for both of us. She responded again…here’s the text convo. insert text message here:

Aunties are Moms too

I’ve been surround by Aunties growing up. Especially my moms sister. Her and my dad remained friends after my mom and dad split. Plus they were both from the same small Albertan town so everyone goes home for Christmas. My dad, always wanted us to keep connected to our roots.

This Auntie was my everything growing up, I’ve told you a bit about her in previous episodes at Christmas she’s the one with last minute gifts saved up for when I’d arrive – sew all night then wrap gifts for placing under the tree. She’s so funny – like I mean lose your drink in your mouth, spit and choke on your giggles funny. She’s full of wit and stories. The other night we talked for 4 hours yep she’s that person in my life.

I can talk and tell her about everything. She would be the one who influence my Mothering skills, from watching and changing her kids diapers, feeding them bathing them, being together with Auntie and kids that was me. I loved it. I had younger sisters that I could help cherish and nourish and play with. Auntie K would braid my hair, we’d stay up late playing Tetris and laughing.

So when you think of Mother’s Day who comes to mind? If you have an amazing mom, you’re one of the lucky ones. Many of us have different people that create this image for us, could be a close friend like my sweet friend Alison who I adore. It could be a girlfriend that you had your babies with, Diane I couldn’t have gotten through those early days and months without you.

Growing up with a Dad

For me growing up with a dad, day in and day out. He did everything he could. He went to school and worked when we were young, a lot. This man’s life was heavy with decisions, money was tight and our life was full of change. We moved a lot always trying for better. He worked a lot so we were home a lot alone.

My Dad was a chef so growing up with this we had great meals and could cook a mean supper at a young age. He was a fun dad, always taking us to the mall, doing small things to spoil us, bring us to family functions – this was important to him. He’s a family guy, he will always be there for you – family and friends.

When I mother to my daughter I do all the things that I wanted done to me. I’m basically giving my child what I feel like I missed out on or didn’t get enough of. Things like ‘pillow talk’ snuggles, whispering secrets, braiding hair (altho my dad could put sponge rollers in my hair so I looked like Shirley Temple – I loved it) makeup, nails, being pretty. I lay with her in the night when she’s had a bad dream, stroke her hair when she’s had a hard day (my dad would sing Que Ser Rar) let her cry and have a moment. Help her make good choices with food, clothes, hair, hygiene. She needs me like we need a person.

Who is this ‘Mother’ to You

To you it might be your mother to me it’s my friends and my dad and my auntie Kathy. Since I’ve grown and as I come into my own spirit and my own sure-footedness I feel like I get to choose. I get to choose to be with this person or that person. When I reach out to my mom, am I prepared for the no response back, again? I get to choose to spend time with people who matter to me. Weather it’s a friend from work, a long distance call that lasts all night, text message with lasers – these are the people who respond back, who care the you are there. They matter to you and you matter to them.

I Feel

I love my mom, I’m here for her. She’s a lost sole. Her mother, Valerie – died when my mom was 16 years old. This changed my mom forever, she’s never been the same. Losing her mom at such a tender age, coming into womanhood, being in high school, in the 60’s and 70s and then having a baby at 19. To this day, when she talks about her mother she cries with sorrow, it weighs heavily on her, it’s fresh. She’s engaged and warm-loving. When I have her in this moment I want to savour it and I have good memories with her, lots of laughs and pictures. One day, she’ll be back again.

Remember who matters to you…be the person who matters to this person.

Until next Tuesday, happy Mothers Day.

Thank you to London who so naturally can take over the microphone. She was busy working on her chores while I was trying to sneak in this episode. I asked if she wanted to share any comments about mothers day episode and she sure completed this episode perfectly.

See you next Tuesday.

Una Pizzaria + Wine: ReView

Episode 50

Welcome back to another episode of Valerie’s Variety podcast and this week we are ReViewing a newish local hotspot, Una Pizza and Wine, based off a Californian style of cuisine…enjoy the episode.

Una Pizzaria Review, this is actually the second time we’ve been to this pizza place, it’s located at 618 – 17 Avenue SW – which is a trendy area in Calgary’s southwest. Doesn’t it just have a good sound to it. Take a listen

when you walk into this place it’s busy. The place is long and rectangular with the open bar situated in the middle of the restaurant along one side. You need to walk the whole length of the restaurant to get to the washroom. To do this you’ll bump into people and other people will need to move out of your way it’s that tight.

Order wine to start…

Pinot Noir for Jeff and a sweeter Blend for me..

as we review the menu – which btw it’s an amazing menu…hear us debate this.

Una Pizzaria Menu

When you’re a pescatarian (only eat veggies and seafood) in a beef province it’s always hard to stop the waiter when he goes through the specials on the menu beef this and that – said with a sense of pride lol. meat balls etc, take a listen most people would think this sounds amazing and don’t get me wrong when we ate meat and beef several years ago we would have been all over this! Plus we are on the OMAD eating style one meal a day, so once we break our fast we want to eat everything, we are ravenous and need all of the food at once. hmm this sounds good hey?

Insert 7:18

You can do a half and half pizza here but the way it goes is like this, one kid of pizza and half can have some of the first kind removed, like half without mushrooms for example.

Una has a few kinds of sauces you can drizzle on top – and this we loved when we were here the first time so we made sure to not miss out this time: spicy honey, hot and plain honey that is locally sourced and there’s one even with truffle oil

Isn’t that funny we could not remember the pizza we had last time, was it this or was it that? LOL but we remembered we loved it,

Insert 9:06


One thing you notice immediately is, it’s super warm in there, like warm and humid, like foods been cooking all day – it’s cozy and has a good vibe.  It’s loud and bustling it’s busy, people are constantly lining up to get in, we used the no-wait app and likely we got a table right away when we were en route driving over but the wait can be long like an hour or more. This was 6 o’clock on a Friday night and it was already full with a waiting line of hungry lookers.

While waiting for our supper we just sat in this nest of a place . there was some interesting art on the walls…then we had a thought?

Insert 29:27

supper arrived along with all of the tasty honey drizzle options on the side  yummy insert 32:04 sauces here

We enjoyed, added another glass of wine then decided to review the dessert menu. Turns out This was a good thought. The desserts especially mine key lime pie was relish.London ordered their house made Carmel popcorn. It was very tasty!

Wasn’t this where the old Wicked Wedge pizza was?

Una Pizza Decor

Do you remember wicked wedge?

Insert 44:35

I do  when I first moved to calgary barely 19  I packed up my car with my BF at the time and our dog and moved to Calgary  we lived just up from this very place on 5 street and 19 avenue  we frequented wicked wedge.

Insert 58:00

So we asked our waiter Johnny….he attested to this yes indeed this was the previous home of Wicked Wedge so cool hey? The pizza joint lives on! 1:26

Dessert Time

Insert 1:07 or 1:11 ordering dessert

Dessert? Ummm yes please. We ordered the key lime pie – this didn’t disappoint. Jeff ordered the rubbed cheesecake which was served in a small sealer style of jar. And London wanted only the popcorn that was on the menu. Our waiter Johnny obliged and brought us a small snack sampler bag to take home. Insert 1:19 here gift Thanks Johnny! Our dessert arrived  yummy!

and did we enjoy our dessert? Insert 1:24

We pay our bill. Johnny our waiter spots me recording and then I check to see if he’s okay with this. He again obliged. Such a curious and good sport

insert 1:07

The Washroom

On the way out I stopped into the rest room  first there is a ladies – busy a men’s – I avoided and then a unisex washroom  I went in here it’s small and tight BUT a great ‘feeling?’ If I can say this about a public washroom. Take a listen…so cool hey?

Also next door they have a ‘by the slice’ option so if you’re feeling a little peckish and you’re in a hurry or walking by stop in and snag a triangle. But wait while there stop and take a minute to walk past the individual slice counter keep walking into the back and you’re going to come upon a place called Frenchie. And it’s a seductive speakeasy place to sit and drink wine by the glass. Pre-Prohibition era cladded in tapestry seating for only about a dozen. People dressed to impressed and enjoying their evening. It’s adorable in there.

Want to meet me for a glass of wine?

OeB ReView

OeB Calgary ReView

Episode 49

We love to go for Breakfast but recently we changed out eating style to the new fan dangled OMAD regime (one meal a day) this has proved to be most fruitful, I was the heaviest I’d ever been and Jeff was in the market for a new waistline also…full disclosure we both had experienced a strange sensation in our bodies on the exact same day – separately. He felt a sort of intense surge of sugar after eating a cookie at a local artisan market and I had the same sensation after eating a free granola bar at a conference I was attending. So after we compared stories we decided to do some investigating on inulin influx and it’s complications within the body- ending up with the OMaD eating lifestyle.

I digress, we once in a while will splurge and eat breakfast, this has always been a favourite of ours so now it’s a little more of a luxury when we get to go…

We went to OeB (stands for Over Easy Breakfast) in Bridgeland. This place has become a staple in Calgary boasting 3 giant locations that never disappoint.

London is choosing 1 scrambled egg, sausage, and a piece of toast – which as her momma I help steer her onto something I think she will a) eat and b) like, we are sitting up at the bar facing the window, it’s a sunny day and we’re feeling good in this place. We’ve been to other OeB locations and our menu choice remains the same – Jeff orders the lobster scramble ‘box’ and I order the don’t even go there crepe. – sometimes they are out of Lobster…Jeff is very particular and strict with his answers…from ‘nothing else’ to 8:30

We’re deciding our meals insert 5:00

It’s got a good buzz in this place. We order 6:47 London fog 7:14 we order 7:17


A side story, years ago OeB was located on Edmonton Trail, my sister and I were going for breakfast wanted the Diner Delux but it was busy. We were walking up Edm Trail and passed this place (OeB) there was people waiting all over the place, inside and out. It was a nice sunny day in the summer. We went into see what the wait was like…they said approx 90 minutes – serious all these people were waiting for 90 minutes? or more?

We put our name on the list. This place must be good, they had a ‘free’ coffee station and offered this to us while we waited. We helped ourselves and went for a walk to enjoy peoples gardens. While walking with our hot coffees we passed a cafe just up the street from OeB and walked up the front stairs to peek inside. There was no one inside, the doors were open and inviting but no one in there Finally, a lady came around the corner and said, ‘ you cannot bring your coffees in here!’ not hi, not nothing…hmmm do you think they just lost a customer, yep! we were going to eat there but not with this comment. Here’s the place up the street (less than a block away) has people waiting for 1 and a half hours and giving away free coffee and this place….well they are no longer in business. Hmm a little lesson, don’t be so quick to judge.


Anytime we are in Bridgeland we always remember a house we fell in love with when we decided to take the plunge, sell our home in Chestermere and move into the city. This place in Bridgeland will always hold a spot in our minds…we always drive by to check it out. Do you live in Bridgeland, do you love it here…


16:25 our meal arrives it’s served on gorgeous plateware – kind of a ceramic feel. Mine is always perfectly coiffed with a long crepe, elegantly place line of piped whipped cream (the real kind) and a neat sprinkle of pistachios. Inside it’s filled with bananas that are perfectly ripe, a sort-of custard that isn’t too sweet and other fresh fruits like strawberries, raspberries and blueberries, there a tiny picture of warmed maple syrup on the side.

Jeff’s is tucked into a chinese style of paper take out box and from the bottom up it’s complete with yummy potato wedges and fried veggies, then a bit of green, then a couple of poached eggs on top with lobster and hollandaise sauce. It’s always stunningly hot and smells so savoury (btw as I write this my mouth is watering and I want to open my ‘no wait’ app and get in line). I enjoy several of his potato wedges – it’s our deal we make. He doesn’t even want to try mine and honestly I’m good with this lol.

Jeff’s came as the other Lobster scramble and not the one in a box, so they changed it for him, and very promptly. As we sit and 20:40 enjoy our food, the buzz in the place makes it all the more enjoyable. London’s loving her meal and so are we.


Jeff debates if he should save his or take it home, they are large meals and very yummy, there isn’t typically enough to take home and when you’re there you likely eat more than we should 🙂

29:00 Scarborough area in Calgary is a good location for us, it’s quaint and beautiful, lots of character. Typically after breakfast on a Sunday we will go for a drive and check out houses, what’s for sale in areas that we love and how much these homes are going for.

35:00 we’re checking out the plates lol always looking for cool plates and they are available on Amazon

35:50 oh shit that was good. 36:10 I recognized the waitress from the Edm Trail location and she was filling us in on the other new locations that have opened since the original one closed. How friendly is she? They needed more space. Mission location is bigger – I think we should check this out! We’ve since visited the mission location which is huge by the way…and very beautiful.

39:00 let’s drive by that house – the house I mentioned earlier lol we are so predictable.? Dessert? LOL we could barely finish our meal…as we were sitting we see people coming in with these cute little baskets, they are a lightweight bamboo wood with some straw in the bottom. At OeB they sell eggs…yes farm style eggs you can buy from OeB and I’ve thought about it many times coming in but never have done this egg service, have you?

If you don’t believe my word for this meal, check out these reviews, once I combed through the Local Guide comments.- which are all good btw…here’s what other people have to say:


about a month ago: The food was fantastic. I had scallops and eggs with bacon and spinach. Everything cooked to perfection. I would highly recommend this cozy spot.

2 weeks ago: Filling breakfast spot. Decent menu selection, my omelet was good and the pancakes were incredibly delicious.

about 2 months ago: Yes sometimes the wait is long but if you use the No Wait app its super convenient and so worth it. Super happy every time I come here! I think I’ve tried all of their “box’d” items and all of their bennies. Now I’m moving on to the other items 😉 Service is always quick in terms of how busy they are. They are always happy to serve us even if its quite close to when they close up for the day. I know a lot of places would tell people they wouldn’t serve. Everything has always came to our table as specified to our server.

Till next Tuesday, let me know if you’ve tried this place out any of their locations and what you thought of it?

Tenshi Sushi

A sushi restaurant we absolutely love it called Tenshi Sushi…it’s small, very small only about 6 tables located in this little spot in Kensington at 304 – 10 Street NW. London and I and Jeff just love sushi…this restaurant isn’t much to look at but the food is so good, the atmosphere is okay, a bit tight to the table next to you and it’s not the most cozy environment – the restaurant is very chilly…especially as our weather that’s been severely cold for many weeks…but this doesn’t stop us from taking in a good meal here – take a listen to our experience

As we debate the menu, this place is located on 10 street NW tucked in from the corner between mainly midtown bar and the Roasterie. So after you get you sushi fix, stop into the Roasterie and get a Grogg Coffee (tastes like a warm coffee crisp chocolate bar) and go for a walk down Kensington District, it’s alive with people and stores, and shoppers. Enjoy walking through and peeking into the stores to see what’s going on. It’s quaint and enjoyable as your stroll.

London is next to me against the wall, Jeff’s across from us with his back to the door – each time the door opens and closes it’s breezy. He ordered the 21 the miso soup, it’s super good and cozy tasting. Hit the spot.

Honey Plum tuna | Miso Soup | Shrimp Tempura | California roll | Mackerel | salmon | tea | small sushi rice on the side – can’t wait for this yummy!

We can hear all the people around us having a great time chatting it up, because the place is so small it’s loud. They have music playing in the background yes, but it’s not really adding to the atmosphere… the staff tho is so nice and friendly, and happy visiting with the tables helping them decide what to try and how to review the menu.

Are you a Sushi Fan?

Like my family? The theory, the California roll was created in Canada by Japanese-born chef Hidekazu Tojo, a resident of Vancouver since 1971. Tojo insists he is the innovator of the “inside-out” sushi, and it got the name “California roll” because it was popular with patrons from Los Angeles. The original type of sushi was first developed in Southeast Asia a huge region. To south China before being introduced to Japan in the 8th century (year 701). Originally, fish was salted and wrapped in fermented rice – that was it!

It’s interesting as I listen back to these recordings and hear what we are talking about and catching up on, like this episode. We sometimes want to switch things up in our house and refresh today it’s our cups, glasses and plates lol. Do you ever want to do this – pillows perhaps in your living area? We have a set a nice dishes that we’ve always kept for formal dinners like ThanksGiving and Christmas. I’m up for a change to revive of an area, they are beautiful so – we swapped them out!

We’re discussing our trip, one of my goals this year is to take a big trip – Portugal is what we have in our minds, we’re looking forward to trying the seafood, wines and take in the history and culture. Hispeed trains and tapas! Tapas was invented in the Moss house and now restaurants are copying us!

Like Jeff mentioned, it’s a bit cold in the restaurant..as we wait for our food we debate other sushi restaurants and what we like about them. What’s your favourite place to get sushi at in Calgary – Kinjo? Pointe Sushi (a future episode) One of our all time favourite and one of our first frequented sushi places is Maruju on Centre. What about you – any favourites let me know as we’re always up for trying out a new place. If you do check out Tenshi, let me know what you think and what your review would be…

Here’s some of Tenshi Sushi reviews out of the 182 on google:

From 3 days ago: Small, authentic feeling place. Great service, food, and prices. Our waiter was very attentive and kind. I thoroughly enjoyed the entire experience and will definitely be back.

From 2 weeks ago: Delicious and unique! Would totally go back. If you love sushi and cool, authentic atmospheres, then check out Tenshi!

From a month ago: Very small restaurant. Only 8 tables. Little hole-in-the-wall restaurant in Kensington with some high quality sushi at reasonable prices.

From 9 months ago: I’ve been coming to this place for about a year now and service and food is always excellent! For this cute little restaurant in Kensington, for 1-2 people there’s never usually a wait and service is prompt. This is one of the only sushi restaurant that serves raw oysters and portion sizes are great for sushi in Calgary. Take out never takes too long so it’s great if you wanted to grab a couple rolls and head down to the river for a picnic. Will definitely try more of the hot items with more people as I’m addicted to sushi!!

Happy Birthday Valerie’s Variety Pod

Happy 1st Birthday Valerie’s Variety Podcast!

Welcome back to Valerie’s Variety Podcast with your host me Valerie Moss and today is our 1st Birthday Episode 47, yes Valerie’s Variety Podcast just turned one. This episode will reflect back on this last year and what we’ve been through together and some of our favourites. Enjoy the episode.

Why a Podcast?

When I decided to start a podcast I needed an outlet, I’m always on the go and require purposeful stimulation in my life constantly. If you ask my husband he’d say his ‘busy wife’. If I’m not sorting through and straightening up my closet or Londons I’m planning a dinner party or planning a night out with friends. I quilt, I sew, I scrapbook, clean, take care of myself… etc.. I like to be engaged and living a life of purpose. With my job as a project manager I’m in a world of change my corporate life is also full of pivots and turns – which matches my personality greatly.

Where was I before?

Previously, I ran a quilting business out of my home, I blogged as a career and had quite an extensive following but when I sold my business and moved back into the corporate world my blogging dwindled as it was quilting focussed and I no longer fed this online blog. Fast forward several years, I’m a mom now of a 7 year old daughter London, I’m back in the corporate world and still looking for a platform to influence and share my life experience. I chose podcasting. Learning how to talk into a microphone, then edit what I said and edit what I said – add loops and details was all part of the fun. And did you know the older you get you need to continuously learn to stimulate your brain so it stays strong – this was also a deliberate strategy.

Try something new today and see how much it helps you – plus you’ll have a stronger purpose. My Soki (Karate Leader) once said, you have to work that pose longer and it’s really hard BUT you’ll be stronger for it. You have to work hard at something until it’s easy – this resonated with me.

Valerie’s Variety Podcast – the Name!

When I came up with the name I knew I wanted it to be a ‘variety’ show but I wasn’t sure of what to call it. Almost every-time I say Valerie’s Variety Podcast I hear a kazoo in the background and can almost see a circus act. There’s a few pods out there with the word variety in the name so I know I’m not alone in the idea of a random show, a show that’s non specific not just one genre or subject matter that gets discussed each and every week.

Then I got show music produced and written by Jason Schell for my show – I was humbled and honoured and I love it TASCAM 40! This name TASCAM 40 I chose for it because Jason didn’t give it a name lol TASCAM is the type of recording device he used and this was his 40th production within it – so TASCAM 40 it is!

In Episode 3 , Haunted Dean House I told the story about where we got married at the Deane House in Historic Fort Calgary. I love sharing my personal stories with you and providing background. This Deane House holds a special spot in my life, it is haunted, someone was murdered!

Episode 5 , Intruder in Mount Pleasant was a difficult episode to talk about, we were robbed and came upon him in our garage – this was a horrible experience and unfortunately one I won’t soon forget. London every once in a while discuss’ the Robber and even recently had a dream of a robber breaking into our home and shooting us with poisonous darts…Yes this is still very real to us. They never caught him…

Some of my favourite episodes were the interview ones, there will be more on the horizon. Is there anyone you’d like me to interview? Someone’s wife or husband – someone’s daughter or son? Maybe an old Boss that was your favourite? Wouldn’t this be fun to send me, Valerie Moss to go interview someone and get the ‘story’ that you’ve been wanting to know for many years?

As a side note: There’s an app called “Somebody” app that people can put a request into and some random stranger will deliver the message for you – in person. Pretty neat hey? It goes like this…so you want to tell a special someone that you love them, they live in another city, you live here – instead of sending flowers or a text or a call, you get the “somebody” app to find this person and deliver the news to them – a random stranger, would you do this?

I digress, back to my interviews, with my step sister Janice in Episode 6, Broadcasting for Corrections, my Dad Michael in Episode 8 Expatriate in Qatar, Born in Calgary, my soon to be step brother in law Darrin in Episode 7, Interview with a Warden, Jen owner of Thrifty Princess Consignment store in Episode 13 and Jason Schnell my music man – these were by far the most fun, I was relatively new at podcasting and producing this was fun for me and the guests were great! Also being interviewed and auditioning for a couple of shows gave me a different perspective. Favourite line from one of my guests? ” I would like to sit and talk to Jesus…”

All the episodes I’ve done reviewing a restaurant or two or many, this will be a staple on this show moving forward as I love to dine in a good place with good people – enjoying the ambiance, music and company plus when the food is great – you can bet an episode will blossom from it. I still love the story of humanity in Episode 26 Review: Ten, 5 & Humanity that I witnessed at the second cup on 17 avenue SW – the workers were kind to the sleeping man with his orange rock.

Episode 12, Q & A Between Mom and 6yo will be a good keeper for a long time, sharing this moment with my daughter – question and answer style. If you want your child to be on the show and have questions you’d like to ask or have me ask I’d love to – what a keepsake. Interview kids is very fun, takes us back to having a good imagination not a made up one. Best part of this episode is ‘plactic cheese’.

When I got into investigating Calgary, I found a couple of articles from the 1970’s that piqued my curiosity. Why the 70’s because I was born in the 70’s so I thought this would be a good place to start. These two stories hook-line-sinker – I was interested.

The first one being about two missing girls – still not solved almost 40 years later . Interestingly, this is by far the most popular show by hundreds of downloads that I produced. I almost think the people who tuned in to listen, read and review this episode and show notes just might know something. Why so much interest around this case. Obviously because it’s still COLD and obviously the people listening want to know more, maybe I find the person and assist in solving this case. We will see…this story isn’t finished yet. Need a refresh Episode 18, Calgary Cold Case 1976 Patsy McQueen & Ava Dvorak.

The Rookie cop who was killed too soon on the job, The Shelever case in Episode 24, Calgary History: William (Bill) Shelever 1977 I wanted to tell this narrative a bit different so I reached out the podcasting community and asked for some voice work for all of the people who were part of the story – this turned out to be my second most popular episode. Under the circumstances of the story, it’s nice to push the details of the story out there to ensure people remember this amazing man Mr. Shelever and how important the Calgary Police Service is in our lives and our city.

Two Minute Tuesday segments were an evolution of not being able to dedicate the amount of time for journaling and production – but instead of not producing an episode, I just produced a short episode, these are random topics about Calgary. I hope you leave with an impression you didn’t have before.

Mental Health Podcast Challenge – winner! I am a big believer in we all have a story and who we are today is because of this story we have lived and continue to go through. This history defines us and builds our character. We have good and bad times in our life – we all process and appreciate things differently. How we systemize these moments in our lives creates our persona. When we look in the mirror we want what’s best – like most people. Sometimes we require help from our peers, colleagues, friends, family and possibly professionals like doctors to steer us in the right direction or back on track. If we allow life to eat us up it will. Lean on someone when you need help – we all need help and most of us are helpful people!

I’m working on a few things to better Valerie’s Variety Podcast and one is a designated studio space. My space is on the main floor where we live, it works great for journalling, sewing, quilting, scrapbooking but for voice work and editing it’s not conducive. My husband (the idea man) puts ideas in my mind and then I run with it – it starts to consume me and the project ensues. Planning my new space which started with a possible shipping container getting delivered into my back yard…this is very pricey albeit an excellent idea I think this needs to be back burnered for now.

I’m designing my spare bedroom, looking into acoustic panels, graffiti art, maybe a new desk or reconditioned table, lighting, new headphones (through a mass drop idea) and more… so I’ll keep you posted on this new development in the Valerie’s Variety Podcast world.

I’m working on a tagline for my show, most amazing shows have tagline so I’m pondering a few, do you like WhatEVER WHENever? ValERies VAR-I-et-Y and others. Since you’ve been listening to my show….do you have a tagline word suggestion that you think will suite me?

…a weekly show about my life in Calgary, reVIEWs and interVIEWs my daily VIEWS

Some upcoming topics will be:

  • Valerie Segments: Who are these ladies and why is there so few of us…or is there?
  • Baby Blues Series:Where I’m stripping down being a new mom, reading from my journal…full disclosure.
  • More two Minutes Tuesday: Bringing Calgary Closer
  • Investigating Calgary...most notably the two girls Ava and Patsy…what happened to you two?
  • ReViews: Have a place, person or thing you want me to review…reach out to me
  • InterViews: Ready to meet some new people?
  • DailyViews: my daily musings

Thanks for hanging with me on Tuesdays it means a lot! Valerie’s Variety Podcast continues to push me to develop myself and these stories – adding the experiential backgrounds brings more story to you – this to will continue.

Looking for feedback if you have something to share with me please let me know valerie@valeriemoss.ca