Archive for September, 2015

Taking Family Pictures

It is usually this time of year when we take our family pictures for the yearly Christmas card.  In the past, we have done everything from dressing up like Santa’s reindeer, to wearing hideous Christmas sweaters.

This year we are doing something different.

Instead of being crazy about our family pictures, we will be a little more tame and take our pictures outside by a lake not far from here.  It doesn’t hurt to do something nice and serious for a change.

Like every year, we are renting a camera from a company that offers a Canon camera hire,  We have used their services a number of times when we needed a professional camera at a good price, and we are always impressed with the condition of their cameras.

They always seem like they are brand new.

I am going out to the lake this weekend to scout out the best location for our pictures, and hopefully we will be able to get them done sometime next week.  I want to get working on them as soon as possible to ensure that we will have everything ready in time for Christmas.

I’ll try and remember to post the completed pictures when they are done.

Posted by Melissa Jones - September 25, 2015 at 1:23 pm

Categories: Friends and Family   Tags: , ,

Helping Grandma Fix the Garage

For the last week I have been out helping my grandmother get things done around the house.  While her mind is still all there, she doesn’t get around as well as she used to, so some of us grandkids take the time to come out and help her out.

At this time of year, we help her to rake up leaves, finish her garden and get the house ready for the winter.  I also made a point to dust her house including vacuuming all of the carpets in her home so that everything will be good until spring.

But the one thing that I couldn’t do on my own was fix her garage door.  I don’t know what happened, but the door quit working altogether and needed to be repaired.  Since I knew that I was out of my league, I picked up the phone and found a company that provided garage door service in Coquitlam BC, and booked them to come out.

It didn’t take the repair technician very long to figure out exactly what the problem was, and with a little bit of adjusting, he was able to get the garage door working again.

My grandmother and I were both very impressed.

Now that the garage door works, we will be able to get her garage cleaned out before I head back home at the end of the week.  I think she will feel a lot better knowing that everything has been taken care of before winter.

Posted by Melissa Jones - September 21, 2015 at 11:22 am

Categories: Around the House   Tags: ,

Found a Replacement Camera at the Last Minute

When Stacey and Michael asked me to fly to London and take pictures of their wedding, I was stoked.  I love capturing every moment of a wedding day, and it made it bitter sweet that it was going to be my friends that were tying the knot – I wanted to make sure their day was going to be perfect.

I checked and double checked everything on my list before I hopped on the plane and flew over to London for their wedding.  As many of you know, I am pretty intense when it comes to lists, so I made sure that I didn’t miss a thing.

At least that is what I thought was happening.

Unfortunately, that wasn’t how things turned out.

I had this uneasy feeling while I was on the plane, but I figured it was just nerves.  Taking pictures for a wedding on another continent was going to be something new for me, so I put the thoughts to the back of my mind.

It was a bad idea.

I knew there was a problem as soon as I picked up my luggage at the airport – my camera was nowhere to be found.

Panicked, I knew I couldn’t dwell on what had happened.  The wedding was in a few days, and I needed to have a camera for the wedding.  Frantically, I phoned around to find a company that offered camera hire London.

Thankfully, I was able to connect with the folks at and I was able to rent the exact same camera that I had back at home.  It meant that I could focus on taking great pictures at the wedding instead of trying to fumble around and learn how to use a different camera.

They were lifesavers – the wedding would have been a disaster if I would have been unable to find a replacement camera.

Posted by Melissa Jones - September 15, 2015 at 11:19 pm

Categories: Life   Tags:

Using Interactive Maps as a Teaching Tool

When it comes to teaching fourth graders in this day and age, the one thing that they expect is technology to be part of the lesson.  Gone are the days of a boring lecture and notes on the board, instead the students want to be engaged by the lesson.

Which makes coming up with material a little more challenging.

Instead of reading out of the book and providing boring lessons, I have embraced using technology in the classroom and have incorporated it into our classes.

For example, when we were learning about the history of the United States, I used iMapBuilder, an interactive map software solution, to create maps where the students could click on and interact with on their tablets in class.  Creating the maps were easy thanks to the intuitive interface provided by the software, and the kids really loved being able to digest the facts in an interactive manner.  We still were able to incorporate all of the facts that we were supposed to do according to the curriculum into the lessons, but in a fun and engaging manner.

As the year progresses, I will continue to use this software as a teaching tool to make learning fun.  It will make this year of teaching social studies and history a lot more entertaining for both me and the students.

Posted by Melissa Jones - September 10, 2015 at 2:16 pm

Categories: Technology   Tags: