What sets your soul on fire

Have you ever been on a trip where the focus wasn’t so much on the destination, but on the journey? For me, that trip was Israel in February 2018. It was my first time in the country and it was amazing. There’s something invigorating about seeing all the places you’ve read about all your life: suddenly everything was alive in a way it had never been before.

But the trip wasn’t just about going to Israel. Rather, it was about everything I’d been through that lead to me being there. Up until late 2016, I’d spent nearly seven years searching for answers: what do I believe and why. I won’t get into the answers to those questions in this post. In the end, though, I returned to the faith of my childhood, but in a more meaningful way. This time, it was personal.

One of the key questions I grappled with as I moved into the next phase of my journey was purpose: why am I here? Why do I do what I do? What motivates me to get out of bed every morning? I remember taking part in a panel a few years ago and the question of purpose came up: why are you a journalist? One of the panelists (a journalist in Vancouver) said many people in news often talk about how much they love telling stories, they love meeting people, but, he said, the reason you’re in this business has to be–and likely is–deeper than that. The problem, he said, is we often don’t connect with that deeper meaning.

At the time, I remember feeling so offended by his response. How dare you criticize my shallow way of thinking, I thought. You don’t know me! Now, years later, I have to admit he was right.

I am still defining my why. The more I do the things that set my soul on fire, the clearer it becomes. The closer I get to my why, the less I care about money or status, the more my inner circle shrinks. The closer I get, the more I transform, becoming more of the person I want to be. The whole process is rather uncomfortable, but no less inspiring. The more I do the things that connect with that deeper sense of purpose, the more life comes into focus.

Outlet mall madness, baby birds and feisty frogs: This week, in pictures (and videos!)

I take a lot of pictures.

More often than not, I send them to my producer, who uses them to build graphics for the News Hour (the images that appear behind or over the anchor’s shoulder when they’re introducing my story). Some of these pictures also end up on social media–Twitter or Instagram.

However, some images never see the light of day…UNTIL NOW! (cue triumphant music).

At the end of my work week (which runs Wednesday to Sunday), I’m going to try and post the images and videos that never make it to air, but give you a sense of what happened that day. Let me know what you think…or, if there’s something more ‘behind-the-scenes’ that you’d like to see.

THURSDAY: OUTLET MALL MADNESS!

Hand to heart, when my Assignment Editor told me I’d be covering the opening of Metro Vancouver’s newest outlet, I told him this wasn’t a story. Seriously–a mall opening!? In my mind this hardly seemed like a big deal.

I was so wrong. So, so wrong.

The event began like any other: with a ribbon cutting.


At first, this is how I thought my story would open–with some wild sound from this. In the end, the video I shot of the ribbon cutting never saw the light of day. Moments after the ribbon was cut, shoppers crowded around the nearby Coach store, some of them pushing to get to the front of the line. I shared a shorter version of this video on Twitter. Here’s the full version:


It was like Black Friday in the middle of July. What’s more–the traffic jams commuters were dealing with because of everyone trying to get to the mall was unreal. Travellers were having trouble getting to the nearby airport–one flight was delayed! Needless to say, this became one of the top stories of the day.

SATURDAY: LNG PROTEST NEAR SQUAMISH

A small group of protesters organized a demonstration against a proposed LNG plant. The biggest difference for me with this story was, for the first time, the protest wasn’t on land.


A flotilla was organized in Howe Sound. Using horns, they made as much noise as they could to express their feelings about the proposed project.


Saturday was also the first time I tried Periscope. For those not familiar with the app, it’s used for live streaming. You can, essentially, broadcast from anywhere. I’ll be trying it more in the days and weeks to come, depending on my assignment. I think it could be a great tool for breaking news and developing story coverage.

SUNDAY: BABY BIRDS AND FIESTY FROGS

Over the last several weeks, it seems all anyone can talk about in BC has been the scorching heat and devastating wildfires. It’s unbelievable to think that, right now, there are nearly 200 fires buring in the province. Unreal.

On Sunday, I made my way to a wildlife sanctuary: Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society in Delta.


In recent weeks, they’d been receiving baby Hawks and owls forced out of their homes by smoke and fire. Not surprisingly, when I tweeted a picture.

I also came across this little guy while filming:

frog1

At first, he seemed cool with me taking his picture…but then he was all like:

frog2

Frogs. So fickle.