kodan, the new dan

IMG_8941IMG_8935Our family has been trying lots of Japanese restaurants around the world and particularly in Vancouver. We have no real complaints. Some are even excellent. But, they are just not Dan. We miss Ken, Tomoko and their fabulous restaurant so much it hurts.

For everyone who shares our loss, you will be thrilled to know the Oda’s have just opened their new restaurant. KODAN. You may be a little less thrilled to learn it is in Osaka. Continue reading

richard hunter vogel (the first)

The first time I met my father-in-law he said “Wow! You are much taller and much prettier than I expected”. I wondered what John had been telling him.

Dick Vogel, painted by his good friend Joe Plaskett

Dick Vogel, painted by his good friend Joe Plaskett

IMG_2219I came to know this charming elegant man very well. I admired his unquenchable enthusiasm for life and his ability to find happiness in every situation, a trait inherited by my husband and hopefully by our sons. I gave his name to my older son.

John and his sisters wrote a beautiful obituary honoring their father. Sadly, due to deadline issues (Vogel’s are always late) only an abridged version made it to today’s paper. I thought I’d share the full version here. Continue reading

gorgeous georgian bay


the sauna as seen from the water

IMG_8530Another weekend, another Ontario adventure! Friday morning, John and I headed to Georgian Bay…. an area of Lake Huron about 65 km north of Muskoka. There are some similarities… same awful traffic, same beautiful “cottages” which really should be called estates. But Georgian Bay is more remote with the majority of houses built on islands; boat access only. I loved how desolate it felt and how vast the horizon was.

I felt removed from civilization albeit in a totally luxurious way. Kim Bozak and Phil Deck, our hosts, have created the most wonderful oasis with drop-dead views from absolutely everywhere including a very cool sauna they had custom designed to fit just perfectly into the space. They also spoiled us with great food, wine and conversation. Continue reading