Long before I took photos at Welcome Parlour and met Ian, the owner, I had enjoyed the ice cream there many times with my wife and two kids. What I didn’t realize, was just how much history exists in the shop. The space itself was once a local bank at a time when men would wear top hats and one-dollar bills existed (look closely at the original wood floors and you can see where people would line up at the tills). Nearly every detail is a reclaimed material or antique, set against a backdrop of a carefully selected photograph showing Lower Lonsdale from yesteryear. I could go on about the one table that used to be a sewing machine, or the gorgeous Italian coffee maker that adorns the counter, but I welcome you to check it out yourself and enjoy a scoop of handmade ice cream (it’s delicious).
Whenever I do a Housestories shoot I am photographing the present - the high-chair next to the wooden table, the art on the fridge, the little commonplace details that make up a home - but in the back of my head I know that there is time in the future when all of these things represent a beautiful distant memory.
Someday Angela and Stuart will see their two children, Asher and Vivian, grow up and become wonderful people, with their own beautiful families, their own careers, their own amazing lives; but there will always be that place in time when Asher would join them in bed on Saturday mornings, and Vivian learned to crawl and discover the world, the precious moments when they were all laughing together during bath time (and the precious moments when both kids were finally in bed).
The present always seems to last forever, but when the future does come, I hope that when they open this album it is beaming with light.
The beautiful thing about homes is that they extend beyond a house. Housestories Canada is excited to bring your the ‘community series’, featuring local businesses that make our communities, wherever that may be, better.
Bridge Brewing opened in North Vancouver in 2012, and since then it has become a staple of the community, expanded its capacity to create more beer-loving goodness, and is proudly a 99% waste-free brewery. If you’re ever in the area, check out the tasting and try the Bourbon Blood Orange Wheat Ale.
When Natalie and Adam first stepped through the front door of their North Vancouver home three years ago, they recognized that it was the one for them. Since then they have watched their young toddler turn into a young child, they brought home their second child, and made a comfortable life surrounded by nature.
The 'Grouse House' is a tranquil home where Natalie and Adam live with their two kids, Linden and Georgia, and their dogs Juno and Lucy. I always start a Housestories shoot with a casual interview with the family about their home, and one of the questions that I often ask is 'what will they miss the most about this home 15 years from now’, and the answers always have one thing in common - it’s the little things; the ordinary, everyday moments. In the 2 hours that I was there, I saw Natalie and Linden bottle a batch of homemade kombucha (pear flavoured) while Adam rocked their 10 week old daughter in the living room, I saw the two dogs Juno and Lucy following the family around the house and finding familiar places to lay down, and of course, I saw Linden turn into a superhero and fly around the home fighting crime (as a fellow parent of a two young kids, this came as no surprise to me).
Over time the past starts to fade, and it’s often the everyday moments that fade first. I hope that opening this album will be like stepping through the front door again, and experiencing a typical, ordinary, beautiful day in their home.