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Nighttime Beauty Tips

Simmons Mattress Gallery wants you to look and feel as beautiful as possible. We strongly believe that your nightly bedtime ritual can help you reach that potential. This week we have compiled seven beauty tips for preparing your body for sleep:

7. Off With Your Face

Never, ever, go to bed without a full facial scrub. Ladies who wear makeup, you know what your pillow looks like when you don’t remove your applied products before bed. You also probably know how cosmetic products clog your pores. Removing all your makeup lets your face breathe. It also reduces the buildup of natural oils that collect on your face. Even if you don’t use cosmetics, a good facial scrub will keep you acne free and looking young. That means you too men!

6. Pillow Exchange

Even after a good scrub, your face still tends to smear a considerable amount of natural oils on your pillowcase. This oil, along with daily bacteria, builds up and creates a petri dish of a headrest. Change your pillowcase weekly to reduce the deposits.

5. Full Body Moisturizer

Makeup removal products can leave your face feeling dry and irritated. Try a facial moisturizer to hydrate your pores. Use a full-body moisturizer for the rest of your skin.

4. Time Sensitive

Be careful not to moisturize just before turning in. Start your beauty routine half-an-hour before bed. This will give your skin ample time to absorb the products so your skin can reap the rewards while you sleep. Try reading a book or decompress the day in silent meditation.

3. Elevate to Exfoliate

Let’s face it (pun intended), your physiognomy defines you. Keeping your face looking healthy and beautiful is a top priority when it comes to outward beauty. Our secret tip: prop your head up. The higher your head, the more it will drain. Too much fluid in your face leaves it looking puffy. This tip is especially important for those who have tied-one-on the night before.

2. Atmospheric Mist

Humidifiers may seem like a childhood tool, but they are actually fantastic for keeping your skin hydrated. You don’t need to turn your room into the Amazon, but a little mist goes a long way.

1. Mattress Miracles

An undisturbed sleep is the best gift you can give your body. A luxury Vancouver mattress can provide you with the rest your body craves. With over 800 individual pocket coils in our standard Beautyrest mattress, the Simmons difference produces instant results. Sleep through the night in comfort and reap the rewards the next morning.

Festival of Trees

The Festival of Trees has opened for another holiday season at the Four Seasons Hotel in downtown Vancouver. For the last 27 years, the festival has displayed beautiful trees decorated by generous sponsors who support the BC Children’s Hospital. Individuals and corporations have worked hard to compose a holiday forest worthy of St. Nick’s highest praise.

The event is free, but organizers suggest a minimum donation of $2.00. This money, along with the sponsor’s donations, goes directly to supporting child health in BC. Last year the event raised over $148,000.

The visiting public is encouraged to donate, but also to vote, selecting their favourite tree from the twinkling line-up.

Because of the event’s growing popularity, the display area was expanded in 2008 to include the upper level entrance to the Pacific Centre Mall off of West Georgia. The festival also runs in Victoria at the Fairmont Empress and in smaller venues in Nanaimo, Sooke, Port Alberni and Osoyoos.

You can visit the trees seven days a week, with the displays open until 11:00 p.m. daily. The final showing will be on Sunday, January 4th.

Come down today and get in the spirit of the holidays by donating to the BCCH and admiring the festive creations.

The Anatomy of a Simmons Beautyrest Mattress

A mattress is more than springs and cushions. Like your body, it is a complex system of integral parts. All those parts add up to the perfect sleeping vessel.

Today we thought we would peel back the comfort layers to reveal the science behind the industry’s top mattress brand. Starting at the top, here are the vital components, that when contained in a Beautyrest mattress, offer a one-of-a-kind sleeping experience:

Comfort Top

  • The top layer of a Simmons Beautyrest, like all Simmons mattresses, is composed of luxurious fabrics to give your mattress a soft comfortable touch. Top layer options include: tight top, pillow top and hi-loft pillow top.

Memory Foam

  • Below the plush fabric top is an optional layer of foam. Simmons uses their advanced AirCool memory foam, luxury firm comfort foam and plush comfort foam to add unparalleled comfort.

TruTemp Gel

  • Available for the World Class line of Beautyrests, TruTemp gel offers a heat-absorbing layer that absorbs, stores and releases excess warmth to keep your bed at the ideal sleeping temperature.

Non-Flip Pocket Coils

  • Individual pocket coils provide the intrinsic support layer for all Beautyrests. The standard Recharge model comes with 800 coils, while the World Class model incorporates a 1,000. These pocket coils are the result of decades of sleep and design research.

AirCool BeautyEdge Foam Encasement

  • Foam at the side of the bed provides a durable edge to maximize the sleeping surface. The encasement foam is also designed to improve airflow within the mattress, providing a side vent for heat release.

Triton Foundation

  • Made of heavy-gauge steel and wood, Trtion foundations are the perfect comfort compliment for Beautyrest mattresses.

The Nutshell Sleeping Pod

Always fascinated by bizarre sleeping products, our interest was peaked this week when we came across an unusual sleeping bag called ‘The Nutshell’. The Nutshell is a private sleeping chamber designed by an MFA student at New York’s School of Visual Arts. Eden Law is the designer of this personal sleeping pod that is intended to provide private moments of sanctuary during the workday.

The Nutshell is a wearable device that wraps around your shoulders like a shawl. It also has backpack straps. When deployed, the nutshell creates a private sleeping dome around your head and upper torso. This allows the user to sleep or eat in a self-contained chamber.

Law came up with the idea during her studies as a way to block out distractions. “As a student,” Law explains, “I’m always looking for the quickest meal to avoid stopping my workflow. I decided that if I’m going to spend five minutes or less eating a lunch, then I might as well use that five minutes to take a mental break.”

The Nutshell is currently not for sale, but it looks as though the marketing team behind her design is revving up. Thank goodness they didn’t go with the alternative name: nut sack,’ because, in reality that is a more accurate visual description.

See what you think of the design below. Would you wear one?

2014 Grey Cup Weekend

The BC Lions have been eliminated from the CFL Playoffs, but the buildup to the 102nd Grey Cup is just starting to build. Vancouver is hosting the national event at BC Place Stadium. Organizers have planned a full weekend of events to entertain the many football fans that will be flooding into our fair city. The game itself will be played on November 30th, with a kickoff of 3 p.m.

Here is a full list of the events planned for the days leading up to the Grey Cup:

Thursday, November 27th

Telus Street Festival

This a family friendly event at Canada Place that is free of charge. Gates open at 11 a.m. The festival will continue each day until kickoff.

Red Truck Tailgate Concert Series

Doors open at 5 pm at the Vancouver Convention Centre. Three bands will be featured: Hey Ocean!, Family of the Year and Gay Nineties. Base tickets are selling for $35. Hey Ocean! will be headlining and plan to take the stage around 10:30 p.m.

CFL Awards

The 2014 CFL Awards will be handed out at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre. The event starts at 5:30 p.m. with the cheapest tickets going for $70. Full VIP experience passes are available for this event.

Friday, November 28th

Blakes CFL Alumni Legends Luncheon

The three-course lunch kicks off at 11 a.m. at the Vancouver Convention Centre. A silent auction is planned along with live entertainment and Q&A session with CFL greats. Tickets are a little steep for this event, with a starting price of $150.

Red Truck Tailgate Concert Series

Doors open at 4 p.m. at the Vancouver Convention Centre. Friday’s theme is country music, with One More Girl, Tebey and Tim Hicks preforming. Cowboy boots recommended, but not required.

Hall of Fame Night

The 2015 inductees to the CFL Hall of Fame will be announced at this event. The festivities will take place at the Hyatt Regency Hotel with doors opening at 7 p.m.

Saturday, November 29th

Athletes in Action Breakfast

Start the day off with a hearty breakfast at the Vancouver Convention Centre and rub elbows with CFL players and their wives.

Festival Parade

Starting at 10 a.m., the parade will begin at Smithe and Hornby and will head west to Burrard, then turn North making its way to Dunsmuir, then East to Granville Street. The Grey Cup trophy will be on display as well as floats, marching bands and past and present CFL stars.

Red Truck Tailgate Concert Series

The final night of this event features Trooper, 54-40 and Sass Jordan. Doors ope at 12 p.m. for all the keeners.

Scotiabank Rock and Roar Gala

This is the premier event of the lead up events to the Grey Cup. It will take place in the Vancouver Convention Centre West ballroom. Unfortunately this event is already sold out.

Sunday, November 30th

Fan March

Before the big game, the CFL has organized an event that celebrates the game’s loyal fans. The march will start at Jack Poole Plaza at 12:30 p.m. and will finish at BC Place Stadium.

Hope everyone has an unforgettable Grey Cup weekend!

10 Next Level Sleeping Tips

At Simmons Mattress Gallery, we firmly believe that a new luxury mattress set can make the difference between a regular night’s sleep and an undisturbed, comfort guaranteed, nightly escape. Yes, our Simmons Beautyrest mattresses, with their pocket coil innovation, offer a sleep that is unparalleled in the mattress industry.

We are proud of what are mattresses can accomplish, but we also recognize there are many ways in which the individual can improve their own sleep. Here is a short list of ten ways you can take your sleeping hours to the next level of relaxation:

10. Caffeine Curfew

  • We all love coffee, but it can be one of the most destructive elements on your potential for rest. Have your last cup no later that 4 p.m.

9. Green is Now Your Favourite Colour

  • Fruits and vegetables are the most important natural nutritional element you can put in your body. Bananas, kale and spinach all help you body produce the sleep hormone melatonin.

8. Drop the Cow

  • Dairy can cause abdominal discomfort that can have you tossing and turning at night. If you are sensitive, reduce your intake, especially before bed.

7. Blackout

  • Remove everything in your room, besides your alarm clock, that produces light. Then work on your windows. Keep your sleep sanctuary as dark as possible.

6. Watering Detail

  • Just like your plants, water is key. Your body works the best when it is hydrated. This includes your sleep.

5. Sunshine of Your Life

  • Back to the plant comparison – You plants need light and so do you. Vitamin D is essential for the production of energy. Make time to be outside each and every day. Your body will reward you.

4. Physical Intensity

  • Vancouver is a health conscious city. We all love to ride, workout and run. But our body doesn’t need an intensive workout at 10:30 at night, especially if you plan on being in bed by midnight. Try lower impact workouts like yoga during the hours leading up to bedtime.

3. Routines, Routines, Routines

  • Our bodies are built around responding to routines. The more you can control your nightly routine, the more you can ensure a full-nights sleep.

2. Anxiety Builds Anxiety

  • If you find it hard to fall back asleep, don’t let your mind win out over your body. Instead of staring at the ceiling, get out of bed and take up a boring household activity. Your body will remind you of how tired you are in no time.

1. High Priority

  • Sleep needs to be a daily priority. It will help with your mood, health, diet and energy levels. Ignore your need and your body will crash.

Top Ten Things That Come In a Pocket

10. Change

With the loss of the penny, our change has become more manageable.

9. Polly

Throwback! Polly pocket was the envy of every little boy. I mean a virtual world in a clamshell. How come they never made a He-Man pocket toy?!?!

8. Lint

Most of the time it ends up in the lint trap, but lint is the ultimate fire starter. If you are ever stuck out in the woods without dry kindling, dig deep in your pocket.

7. Protectors

Keeping nerds safe from their pens since 1947.

6. Knife

The Swiss were ahead of the curve on this one. The pocketknife is the go-to-tool for Dads around the world. Just make sure you remove it before going through airport security. Seriously.

5. Manifesto

The key physical attribute for any manifesto is size. If you can’t stuff it in your pocket, you may miss out on that brilliant idea on your way to the gym. Marx and Engels were able to share the weight; four pockets – one world changing political document.

4. Keys to a new car

RIP Rod Roddy.

3. Phones

New for 2014: Apple’s bendable version.

2. Pizza

The perfect doughy vehicle for pepperoni, cheese and sauce.

1. Coils

Simmons patented non-flip pocket coils. We took the normal spring mattress and flipped it. For good.

Our pocket coils offer an undisturbed sleep with the ultimate level of comfort. Try one at Simmons Mattress Gallery.

Splatter Zone

The goriest night out in Vancouver this Halloween season is Evil Dead: The Musical.

The B-movie is transformed for the stage with all the characters you loved from the original film series. At the centre of the action is Ash, played by Scott Walters (originally Bruce Campbell). Ash brings his boomstick and all the one-liners you can handle: “You might say that was overkill… I say it was just enough kill.”

Accompanying Ash are Cheryl, Ash’s little sister; Linda, Ash’s girlfriend; Scott, Ash’s best friend; and Shelley, Scott’s new squeeze. All the performers dance, sing and shoot their way towards the shows gory conclusion.

Tickets are $29.99 for regular seats or an even $40 for the splatter zone. Yes, you heard that correct. SPLATTER ZONE! If you go with the big ticket, make sure you wear a light coloured shirt that you’re not too attached to.

The production is running nightly at the Norman Rothstein Theatre until November 1st.

Who needs a right hand when you can replace it with a chainsaw!?!?!

Ring-inginginging…..

Blue Goggles

A new study conducted by Swiss researchers at the Psychiatric Hospital of the University of Basel has found that special glasses that block only blue wavelengths may help us sleep better.

Our body is more sensitive to light then we might imagine. That computer screen in front of you could be the reason you had trouble sleeping last night. Excessive blue light is one of the leading contributors to poor sleep. Blue light wavelengths are produced by many of the devices that we rely on every day. Absorbing excessive amounts of these rays after sunset can make it hard to fall asleep.

Natural daylight keeps our body aligned with the environment. During the winter, when we experience less daylight, our body produces increased levels of melatonin, so we can fall asleep easier. During the summer, when we have more daylight hours to be productive, natural light suppresses the secretion of melatonin, allowing us to stay awake longer.

This dynamic pattern is part of our personal set of circadian rhythms. These rhythms aid in our sleep.

Unfortunately technology has the potential to disrupt these rhythms.

The Swiss team found that teenage boys who wore the glasses and used computers and hand-held devices before bed were much more likely to feel relaxed and tired before bedtime than when wearing clear glasses.

The glasses were effective in blocking the wavelengths that suppressed melatonin. The researchers were careful to also suggest the results may have been caused by an overall dimness. Not just the blue light.

Fall Back

On Sunday November 2nd, most of British Columbia will move their clocks back an hour. Daylight savings is here and with it a chance to gain back some needed sleep.

Sleep experts say that an extra hour on the mattress over the weekend can help us get caught up on our weeknight sleep debt. That extra hour helps our body recharge and our brain repair the damaged synapses that might have been clouding our thoughts during the week. And with Daylight Savings – It’s guilt-free!

You don’t even have to sleep. All you need to do is enjoy your Vancouver mattress for one extra hour. That’s not so hard.

If it is a chore to stay in bed, you probably are sleeping on the wrong mattress. A visit to Simmons Mattress Gallery can reverse your stance on sleeping-in. Come talk to the professionals before Sunday.

And for those of you on Mountain Time, well, it’s business as usual for you. To keep up with the rest of us, why don’t you head to bed an hour earlier on Saturday? We wouldn’t want an unfair advantage.

Vancouver’s Ambitious Goal to Become The Greenest City

Vancouver is hoping to become the ‘Greenest City‘ by 2020. This ambitious goal is something that we can all strive towards. It will be a hard designation to gauge and it definitely won’t solely come down to the number of bike lanes we have. We all have to do our part to keep Vancouver a sustainable and environmentally progressive city.

In the mattress world, this means recycling. Mattresses have a life cycle and when their 8-10 year term comes to an end, they need to be disposed of by a green method.

Vancouver currently has a number of options for environmentally friendly mattress disposal. You can take your old mattress to a Transfer Station where they charge $15 per item or you can take them directly to a mattress recycler.

MattressRecycling.ca is one of your private recycling options. This company just received an award for ‘Best Green Business’ by the Small Business BC Awards. They charge $12.50 for residential mattresses and box springs. They also take metal bed frames free of charge.

A third option is to call an independent junk removal company. Companies like 1-800-GOT-JUNK will come to your home for mattress removal, saving you from an awkward transportation trip.

For more information on mattress disposal and for finding a luxury replacement mattress, talk to the professionals at Simmons Mattress Gallery.

The Forbidden City

The Vancouver Art Gallery is hosting a new exhibit this fall that will feature five centuries of artifacts from Imperial China. The exhibit is titled “The Forbidden City: Inside the Court of China’ Emperors” and will run until January 11th at the main museum centre between Robson and Georgia Street.

At the height of it’s power, the Beijing palace was a place of mystery, where only a select group of staff, visitors and family members could ogle the treasures held within its walls. Now, a century after the Empire fell, the veil is being removed and the priceless contents are being displayed for the public.

The exhibition is organized by Beijing’s Palace Museum and the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. The main curator is Dr. Chen Shen, the ROM’s Chair of East Asian Archaeology. Local historian and UBC professor, Timothy Brook, is coordinating the exhibit for Vancouver’s exhibit.

The collection is divided into nine unique sections:

Entrance

  • Focuses on Aisin-Gioro lineage line, the greatest triple generation of emperors in Chinese history

Reigning

  • Icons of power are displayed in this room with an emphasis on the emperor’s throne.

Warring

  • Armour and weaponry, the tools for consolidating power.

Symbols

  • This section looks at the colours and dress of the emperors.

Lineage

  • A look at the concubines who provided heirs to the throne.

Texting

  • Less emoticons and more calligraphy, this section deals with the private and public communications voiced by the rulers.

Consuming

  • The far-from-ordinary daily objects used in the palace.

Collecting

  • The emperor’s private collection of artifacts from China and around the world.

Farewell My Emperor

  • The final room features a discussion on the last emperor of the Forbidden City.

The exhibit will also host two historical lectures on October 28th at 7 p.m. and November 4th at 7 p.m. Both of these talks are on a Tuesday evening, where entrance is by donation.

Mattress Vancouver

Simmons Canada has developed a wonderful new tool for helping you choose your next Beautyrest mattress. With a large variety of product lines, the process of selecting a new mattress can come across as daunting. The new tool makes it easy to find the perfect bed for your lifestyle.

Simmons Mattress Gallery, on Broadway and Oak, has an experienced staff of mattress professionals to help with walk-in customers, but sometimes mattress shoppers like to do their initial browsing online. Enter the Beautyrest Product Selector.

The product selector asks a series of questions to determine which mattress in the Beautyrest line-up makes the most sense for your personal preferences. It asks a series of six simple questions where customers are given a number of choices to adequately express their desires and lifestyle regiments.

The first question is: “Why are you looking for a bed?” Below the question are five fun little cartoon circles with a brief statement. All you need to do is choose which one comes closest to your intent. Our favourite doodle is the chainsaw wielding, ‘I hate my current bed’ figure.

The other five questions concern bedroom type, comfort preference, lifestyle demographic, sleeping position and body type.

Once completed, the program offers the bed that best suits your answers, plus two other suggestions.

The results are easily printable so you can bring them with you for your next visit to Simmons Mattress Gallery in Vancouver.

Take the survey today and have the perfect mattress in your home by nightfall.

Pop Songs vs. Lullabies

Kelly Clarkson recently admitted that when its time to put her baby down to bed, her go-to-song is not a classic lullaby, but a pop hit from the 90s R&B group TLC. “Silly Ho” is her baby’s favourite (non) traditional lullaby.

Sounds like an odd choice, especially from a songstress with such a deep catalogue of beautiful love songs, but it seems this is becoming the norm.

More and more parents are choosing to sing pop songs to their wee ones instead of traditional lullabies.

A survey done by toy manufacturer “Symphony in B” found that 64% of parents choose radio hits over the classic cradlesongs. The kids hear them in the car, in the kitchen and on television. They hear their parents singing along and create a comfort level with the melodies. Hearing their parents preform them soothes their mind and relaxes their bodies.

Of the 2000 polled for the survey, 89 per cent believe that music is an important at an early age to develop an appreciation for music later in life. Experts also believe that children that are sung to are also more likely to develop proper language skills.

Maybe Iggy isn’t the ideal language teacher, but her lyrics may have your future prosecutors spouting full sentences before they hit the playground.

Keep it ‘Fancy’ Vancouver.

The Key to Unlocking Your Potential

Potential is a buzzword that is batted around when an individual is preforming at a level below expectations. It is often accompanied by the conjunction ‘but’, as in: “he had the potential to reach his goal, but [insert popular excuse].

Simmons Mattress Gallery wants to embrace potential, while removing the ‘but’. We believe that a new mattress is the ‘key’ for moving from potential, to success. This key will opens doors, creates confidence, improve your health and generally make life easier and more manageable.

How does this ’super key’ work?

A Simmons Beautyrest will improve your overall energy potential allowing you more opportunities to succeed at what ever task you set your mind to.

You won’t be sapped for energy at 2:30 in the afternoon. You won’t arrive at work looking like you spent the previous night at a dive bar (even if you had). You won’t be forced to make-up excuses for why you didn’t make it to the gym. And you definitely won’t spend the day showing off your back molars

Our beds will recharge your body, mind and soul. With eight hours of undisturbed rest, you will have more opportunities to kick-ass. A proper sleep will transform your ability to meet your goals leading to a happier, healthier, richer life.

Unlock your potential today, with a new bed from Simmons Mattress Gallery.

Keep Smiling Vancouver

Rough Guides travel guide has ranked Vancouver as the sixth friendliest city in the world.

The online travel resource, produced by Penguin Publishing, took a survey of its users to create the list. At number one, was Glasgow, Scotland. The only other Canadian city on the list of 15 was Montreal, coming in at third in the world. The only American city to make the list was Atlanta, Georgia. England (with Liverpool and Manchester) and Canada were the only two countries to have more than one city on the list.

The sleep professionals at Simmons Mattress Gallery believe the secret to our overall friendliness lies in the quality of sleep that Vancouverites receive. We don’t want to take a 100% of the credit, but SMG has been providing the city with luxury mattresses for years. All that undisturbed sleep has made us a happier, friendlier folk.

We rise early with enough energy to work, play and enjoy our families. We are blessed with a beautiful backyard of wilderness to explore, the ocean to paddle on and a plethora of bike lanes to commute on. Our good fortune shines through in our willing nature to share our gifts with all of those (mostly) wonderful tourists. And when it’s time to crash, we have the world’s best beds to collapse on.

So keep smiling Vancouver. Your friendly spirit is not going unnoticed.

Should You Wear a Bra to Bed?

For most women, the choice to wear a bra to bed is a matter of comfort; some enjoy or need the support of a bra, while others find a bra to be an unneeded irritant. But some women believe that wearing a bra at night increases the risk of breast cancer. Still others are under the notion that not wearing one increases the chance of, dare we say it, ‘breast sag’.

Let’s set the record straight.

First, there is no scientific evidence that wearing a brazier while you sleep will increase your chances of developing breast cancer. Claims that tight-fitting bras trap toxins in the lymphatic system have not been proven. Some magazines might tell you otherwise, but until science backs up this claim, you can forget about it.

Next, a bra at night will not magically lift your breasts to new heights. Time, gravitational pull and breastfeeding will do their work no matter how stiff your underwire is.

Comfort alone should affect your choice of what you sleep in.

Bra or no bra, a new Vancouver mattress will improve your sleep dramatically. And that’s been proven!

The Apple Rollout 2014

Apple has rolled out their impressive new lineup of devices for the fall season. The next must have accessory for 2014 is the new Apple Watch, a wearable device that promises to be more user friendly than the slow moving Google Glasses.

The Apple Watch will come in two sizes with a number of different bands available. For the sporty types, there is a sweat-proof strap and for the business look, an 18-karat gold version.

The watch will run on a new operating system designed specifically for the wrist device. Apple’s intent is to create a smart watch that works with their popular iPhone. The applications will enhance the ’smart’ experience, not necessarily duplicate what the iPhone already provides.

Only a few applications have been officially announced, but Mattress Vancouver hopes their is a sleep tracker similar to the program offered by Jawbone UP. This will help users monitor their nightly schedules so they can maximize their time on their luxury mattress.

Also on the Apple rollout was the new iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. The new phones have finally introduced a screen size that is competitive with the popular Galaxy. They have also followed the market trend and shaved off a little in the width department.

But like all Apple products, they don’t come cheap. Expect to pay as much as $1000 for the 128GB edition and as ‘little’ as $749 for the basic 6 with 16GB. The pricing for the watches has not been released for Canadian markets, but Americans will be paying close to $350US for the basic watch and strap.

Diner en Blanc

If you haven’t received your official invitation by now, it’s probably too late.

Diner en Blanc is returning to Vancouver for it’s third sitting. The mysterious all-white dinner party is an invite-only picnic that has become one of the most anticipated social engagements of the Vancouver summer calendar.

The event, for those of you in the black, is basically a bring-your-own-everything-picnic, where all the attendees wear white.

Why is an invitation so sought after? That’s a good question. Probably because the organizers are extremely savvy in their marketing and social media skills. The whole event is like one perfect Instagram photo, complete with a black and white filter to give it that retro vibe.

Tickets are $35, for nothing more than a chance to sit at a table. Again, you have to provide your own food and drink.

Besides the ‘only wear white’ gimmick, the dinner’s popularity is also aided by the mystery surrounding its location. Each year the organizers choose a new public setting for the event. The catch: no one is altered to the location until a few hours before the event.

Prospective picnickers go through a series of complicated registration phases to secure a seat. Over 35,000 people applied for this year’s event and only 3,200 were accepted. The good thing for past guests, is once you’re in, you’re in annually. That is, if you don’t break any of the long list of etiquette rules, the most stringent being ‘only white garb’.

So for those of us without a snowy white ticket, there’s always a spot on the beach. Wear whatever you like, you will always be welcomed back.

Voice Conditioning

Like athletes, professional singers need to be mindful of their rest. Sleep helps to restore muscles, but it also helps to protect your voice.

Getting eight hours of rest reduces the time you spend communicating. This limits the use of your vocal chords for purposes other than singing. Resting your voice, like resting almost all of your body parts, reduces your likelihood of developing strain related injury.

Sleep also wards off infection and the chance of developing throat related bacterial diseases, like strep throat. Infections can be crippling for professionals who rely heavily on their body’s performance. A cancelled tour or a poor concert can be career ending, especially with advances in social media, where millions can share their feelings instantly.

Keep hydrated and maintain a tight sleep schedule and you can extend the life of your oratory pipes. Your career will benefit from your healthy ways and hopefully so will your pocketbook.

For singers, or anyone for that matter suffering from vocal strain, don’t freak out; the condition is reversible. Limit your conversations, drink as much H2O as possible, sleep on a comfortable mattress and the signs of vocal fatigue will fade with time.

To get the best rest possible, sleep on a Simmons. Simmons is one of the top three mattress brands in North America. Talk to a professional at Simmons Mattress Gallery in Vancouver and keep hitting the high notes.

Neymar’s Mattress Endorsement

The Brazilian football phenom, known simply as Neymar, touched down in Tokyo this week to film a series of mattress advertisements intended for Japanese television.

The superstar athlete, who became recognized worldwide during the 2014 World Cup, was injured in Brazil’s quarterfinal matchup with Columbia. A cracked vertebra in his lower back kept the striker from playing in Brazil’s last three matches.

Rest and physiotherapy will hopefully allow the footballer to rejoin his offensively stacked club team, FC Barcelona in the fall.

The Japanese mattress manufacturer, AirSleep, hopes to cash in on Neymar’s rise to football fame, using his star power to sell their new beds. The young Brazilian was filmed sitting on AirSleep’s foam mattress, a mattress they claim holds secret relaxation properties.

Sleep is key for Neymar’s recovery, as his muscles and tissue work to mend the damage done during Brazil’s win over Columbia.

Upon completing his obligatory media spots, Neymar ended the day with a quote that was almost assuredly written by his publisher:

“This mattress feels great. I am sure it will help me in my recovery. I had a long trip here, so I’m looking forward to testing this mattress tonight.”

This isn’t the first time a Japanese company has claimed that their mattresses help pro athletes. Weava Japan provided beds for 150 Japanese athletes during the London Games. The mattress was multipurpose: one side for muscle fatigue and one side for relaxed training.

For the weekend athlete, we suggest a Simmons Beautyrest, the perfect bed for restorative health; ideal for tasks like keeping up with your four year-old.

Ten Ways to Keep Cool in Your Bedroom

The temperature this week in Vancouver is on the rise. This can mean uncomfortable sleepless nights – a crime against humanity. Here are ten ways to beat the heat when it’s time to turn in:

10. Circulation

Keep that air moving. If you don’t own a fan, buy one immediately. Better yet, visit an appliance recycling centre. People are always discarding old fans that can be brought back to life with a simple wire connection.

9. Pillow Pops

You heard us: Pillow Pops. Take your pillow, put a bag around it, preferably one with an airtight seal and place it in your freezer two hours before bed. With your head cool, your body will follow.

8. Hangtime

Remove your sheets in the morning and hang them in the coolest part of the house. This will probably be somewhere in the basement. Try to find an area with a cross breeze. Add a bouquet of dried lavender to offer a fresh scent.

7. Thinning on Top

No, we’re not talking about male-pattern baldness. We’re talking about switching your duvet out for those summer sheets.

6. Hydration Meditation

Water is your best friend in the summer. Drink more water and your body will be cooler. You may have to make one more bathroom trip during the night, but your overall comfort level will be much higher.

5. Misty Mountain Top

Summer essential: a mist bottle. Hit up the dollar store for a cheap cool down tool. Doubles as a furniture scratcher deterrent.

4. Muscle Packs

Grab one of your blue gel packs from the freezer, throw a zip-lock bag around it and toss it in between your sheets.

3. Wrist Guards

Sounds like an old-wives-tale, but cold water on your wrist can actually cool down your whole body. Do it just before bed and receive an hour of relatively cool body temperature.

2. Disrobe

The less elastics on your body the better. You might also improve your relations with your neighbours.

1. AirCool Foam

The Simmons Beautyrest AirCool design utilizes AirCool memory foam, a breathable mesh border and a ventilated foam encasement to keep your bed cool and comfortable. Mattress Vancouver has your summertime mattress on sale.

World Cup Final Party

Outdoor sporting celebrations are a problem for Vancouver organizers. After 2011s (let’s not use the ‘r’ word) public mutiny, the city is tentative to put their stamp of approval on any event that brings sporting fans together in a concentrated area. And this is understandable…

To control the ruckus but still offer an event where people can publicly enjoy sport, the city has organized a celebratory indoor community event for the final match of the World Cup. The event will be held at Trout Lake Community Centre and is titled “Soccer! Samba!! Celebration!!!”

The event will have a Latin theme with live music and dancing. The goal of the organizers is to recreate the atmosphere of a stadium inside Brazil. This is a family-friendly event, so it is strictly alcohol-free. There will be two zones, a Rio De Janeiro Zone that mimics the surround sound of the stadium experience with a party atmosphere and a Soccer Fan Fun Zone for all the younger soccer enthusiasts. The kid zone will have a host of activities and games available to keep the kids interested.

Guests are asked to dress up in the colours of their favourite  World Cup team. Awards will be given out for best outfit.

The facility can only hold 800 people, so book your tickets online as soon as possible. The doors will open at 10 a.m. next Sunday. Have fun!

Celebrate the Light

It all started on Canada Day – A fifteen-minute display of light streaks, shimmering arcs and deafening explosions. Then we had a short break and then BAM! The skies were alight again for the Fourth of July. Then it was the bike ravers on Saturday night.

“When will the explosive madness subside?!?!” Said no one.

Bring on the free light parties!

If you are a firework enthusiast living in the Lower Mainland, you will be happy to know that the annual Celebration of Light Festival (formerly the Symphony of Fire), will be returning to English Bay. This year’s naming rights were past to the Japanese auto manufacturer Honda.

Competing this summer will be the USA, France and Japan. The Americans will get the party started on the 26th of July, followed by French on the 30th and finally by Japan on Saturday, August 2nd.

If you have not been to the summer fireworks before, here are a few basic facts and tips for Vancouver’s Celebration of Light:

  • The fireworks are shot from a barge approximately 500 metres from shore.
  • One of the best views for the fireworks is from the water. If you have a friend who owns a boat, send them a quick message on Facebook today. Plant the seed.
  • Don’t plan on getting out of the downtown core quickly. Your best bet is to use public transit and then plan to spend a few hours, post fireworks, walking around downtown or visiting a pub or restaurant. This will give the crowds a chance to disperse.

The Fireworks start at 10 p.m. If that’s past your usual bedtime, make sure to get as much rest as you can the night before.

Learn a Language While You Sleep

The dream of every student, from grade school to grad school, is the ability to learn while you sleep. Think about all those hours you spend on your mattress… If those could be combined with learning a skill, the global GPA would skyrocket.

So far this has only been a day dream of science fiction enthusiasts, men and women hoping beyond hope that one day they could utter Neo’s prophetic words: “I know Kung-Fu.”

This week a group of Swiss psychologists stepped one foot closer to the Matrix.

In a study published in Cerebral Cortex, authored by the Swiss National Science Foundation, researchers proved that basic language skills can be transferred during sleep.

The psychologists set up an experiment with 60 German-speaking students. The students were taught a slew of Dutch words at ten o’clock at night. Half the group was then allowed to go to bed. While they slept, the words were played back to them. The other group was kept up and continued to review the new vocabulary.

At 2 A.M. the sleeping group was woken and tested against the sleep-deprived team.

The sleep group scored considerably higher on word recognition, even though it had been four hours since their fully conscious brain had heard the new Dutch words.

Some may say this test only shows the negative impact that sleep depravation has on learning. But others, including a handful of Swiss scientists, believe it is a step towards Zion.

“I can only show you the door…”

Raonic’s Napping Results in Aces

The Canadians are through!

Milos Raonic and Eugenie Bouchard have both advanced to the fourth round of Wimbledon with impressive wins on a rain soaked world stage.

Bouchard defeated Andrea Petkovic with 6-3, 6-4 set wins. Adding to her delight was the knowledge that she would not have to square off against Serena Williams. Alize Cornet, Bouchard’s next opponent, upset Williams, a five-time champion at Wimbledon.

On the men’s side, Raonic took it to Lukasz Kubot, serving up 30 aces, with an average serve speed of 190 km/h. Yikes!

Heavy rains forced a number of delays in the match. Raonic was afforded enough time to actually catch a few z’s between serves. “There was one point where I sort of said, ‘I don’t think there is going to be any play today’, and I was able to take a nap in the massage room and just stay calm and wait it out,” said Raonic.

The nap must have been just what the coach ordered, because eighth seeded Canadian was able to dismantle his competitor in 7-6, 7-4, 6-2 sets, losing only just nine points on serve.

That proves it: Sleep does wonders. Find yours on a luxury mattress from Simmons Mattress Gallery.

Latin Flavour

The World Cup has brought a lot of attention to Latin America these past few weeks and that interest is only going to increase with the start of the 6th Annual Latin America Week here in Vancouver.

From June 28th to July 6th, Latin Americans will be showcasing their colourful culture at events around the city.

The official Latin America House will be hosted at Edgewater Casino with an 18 foot high HD screen for World Cup viewing. There will be drink and food specials and music to move to.

On Canada Day, the party will take to a float that will feature folk dancers from Mexico, Peru and El Salvador. On Thursday, the party moves back indoors with Carnaval de Sol Fiesta at FanClub on Granville Street. Expect this to be a long night…

For family fun, visit the final days of the festival for a two-day street party on Granville. There will be 400 performers, three stages, a marketplace and a street soccer tournament. The festival focus for the weekend will be arts and culture.

Wondering what to expect? Well, by now we’ve all seen how the Brazilians can party. Let’s hope they make it past the Quarters.

A Beaver Named Suárez

A local conservation group, Friendz of Beaver Lake, is putting forth a petition to change the name of one of the beavers that lives in Vancouver’s Stanley Park. The beaver at the heart of the issue is currently named Big Country, after the legendary Vancouver Grizzlies star centre Byrant ‘Big Country’ Reeves. FBL are hoping to rename the busy builder, Suárez, after the famous Uruguayan striker, Luis Suárez.

Suárez was involved in an incident on Tuesday, June 24th, during the Group Stage match of the World Cup. Uruguay was facing Italy, when Suárez bit down on the shoulder of Italian defender, Giorgio Chiellini. Suárez has been adamant that the bite was unintentional, but replays clearly show the striker deliberately chomping the Italian.

This is the third biting incident for Suárez who has been banned from nine international matches and four months of club football by the regulatory body FIFA.

Friendz of Beaver Lake see the humour in the incident and hope Vancouverites do as well.

Suárez the beaver will be far busier over the summer months than his Uruguayan namesake. The beavers are constantly working to dam the headwaters of Beaver Creek, much to the frustration of Parks Board staff.

Beaver Creek is one of the few creeks in the Vancouver Lower Mainland that has an active salmon run. The beavers’ work limits the fresh water that flows down the short creek and out of the park to Burrard Inlet.  Park staff have to work hard to keep up with the busy beavers, deconstructing their woody blockade every other day.

I Am A Food Blog Champion

Saveur Magazine has honoured Vancouver’s own, Stephanie Le with this year’s award for top food blogger. Miss Le has been blogging since 2010, when she took on the Julie Powell challenge (Julie and Julia) and cooked her way through every recipe in the chef David Chang and New York Times food critic, Peter Meehan’s cookbook, Momofuku. Le went on to produce her own image-heavy blog, simply titled: I Am a Food Blog. With international exposure, Le’s work found its way to the screens of Saveur. Their recognition of the Yaletown blogger’s output is guaranteed to put Le on the iPads of amateur chefs around the world.

When asked about her favourite places to dine in Vancouver, Le provided this list:

  • Suika, for Japanese
  • Toshi, for sushi
  • Ganache, for pasteries
  • Thomas Haas, for croissants
  • Phnom Penh, for chicken wings
  • Au Petite Cafe, for banh mi

We don’t know if there is a prize for top sleep blog, but we’d like to think we would be in the running.

Here are some of our favourite beds to sleep on:

And All That Jazz

The Vancouver International Jazz Festival is back! The even kicked-off this weekend with free concerts held at the Georgia side of the Vancouver Art Gallery and around the back in Robson Square. The festival is set to run until July 1st.

Between now and then the festival will present some of the biggest names in the contemporary jazz field. This year’s big draws are Bobby McFerrin, saxophonist Maceo Parker, guitarist John Scofield and vocalist Cassandra Wilson. The performers will play at venues around the city.

This is the 29th time Vancouver has hosted the event. The first festival was in 1986, when organizers teamed up with the Expo 86 planners to bring a stellar line-up of talent to our city. On the first bill were performers such as trumpet legend Miles Davis, Wynton Marsalis and this year’s returning star, Bobby McFerrin (don’t believe the hype – McFerrin is alive and ‘happy’).

One of the best features of the festival are the number of free concerts available to Vancouverites. Next weekend the free fun moves to Yaletown, with free shows at David Lam Park. Don’t miss the crazy mash-up Delhi 2 Dublin, a group that mixes Celtic music with Bhangra; let the highland flash mob commence!

The festival wraps up with a day of free jazz on Granville Island on July 1st, Canada Day.

The Swan Whisperer

“They give me such joy, they give me meaning to the day.”

This is a quote from Fiona Sinclair, an elderly Vancouver citizen, who, after a recent global news story, has been affectionately labeled as the ’swan whisperer.’

Fiona is the unofficial caretaker of the mute swans at Lost Lagoon. She has been monitoring the swans daily for the last eight years.

“[The swans],” explains Sinclair, “have been a tradition in the park for 125 years.” Queen Victoria gave them to the park in 1889.

Sinclair loves the attention the swans receive from locals and tourists, but is worried about the bread and other edible items offered up to her white-winged friends. “Bread is literally empty calories and it’s harmful, in that they think they have all that they need; they’ve got a full feeling, they don’t think they need anymore so they ignore the good food.”

The good food, supplied naturally by the lagoon is in great demand because of the high numbers of other local and migratory birds that use the Lagoon. To supplement the swans diet, the Parks Board creates a healthy mixture of food consisting of three equal parts of crack corn, protein pellets and wheat. They give this mixture to Sinclair to distribute. Each swan ingests about 7 pounds of this mixture each day.

Sinclair was also pivotal in the recovery process of a swan named Tristan. Tristan was left wounded by a knife attack he sustained from a man with mental issues. At the time of the incident, Tristan wouldn’t let any of the park staff near him to care for his injury. The only human contact he accepted was Sinclair’s. She cared for the wound and helped Tristan back to health.

Citizens of Vancouver can sleep well knowing that Sinclair is taking care of the four royal birds.

Turning the World on Its Head: The Vancouver Aquarium Expansion is Complete

The Vancouver Aquarium unveiled its first phase of expansion at an official ceremony on Friday. The $45 million project is the most significant addition to the Aquarium since its doors opened, 58 years ago.

The new, 55,000-square-foot addition includes a new entrance gallery and courtyard, with a 360-degree digital screen and a massive four metre plus diameter globe. The globe is turned on its head to bring more significance to the Polar Regions and Canada. The flipped view is especially visible for the wee ones.

Other new exhibits include a school of cichlids from Lake Malawi in Africa, a Red Sea coral reef and a Jamaican fruit bat exhibit (keep those necklines covered).

The Aquarium has also focused their attention on local habitats, such as the Gulf Islands. The Pacific coast exhibit now features a school of coho salmon.

Additional plans promise expansion of the beluga and dolphin tanks.

John Nightingale, the Aquarium’s CEO, is especially proud of the new project. He hopes that the new educational opportunities will out shine the negative press that the aquarium is receiving over captivity issues. “Our aim is to reach and inspire more visitors to engage with issues affecting our aquatic and ocean environments and to take personal action that will help save our ecosystems and the wildlife that depend on them,” says Nightingale.

Top Ten Summer Drinks

Whether relaxing in the shade of your backyard or soaking up the rays on one of Kitsilano’s dozens of patios, the essential summer accessory is a cool drink. Here are Simmons Mattress’s top ten summer time sips:

10. Starbucks Passion Tea Lemonade

The perfect drink for shopping on Robson. Cool, refreshing and somewhat reasonably priced. The only drawback: all that ice. These drinks tend to go down fast.

9. Watermelon-Basil Daiquiri

Forget what your mother told you about basil. It belongs in your drink. This colourful concoction calls for 6 1-inch cubes of watermelon, 4 basil leaves, 1/4 cup of light rum, 2 tablespoons of fresh lime juice, 1 1/2 tablespoons of simple syrup and a frozen watermelon spear for decoration. Yum!

8. Tom Collins

Simple. Sweet. Addictive.

7. Haymaker’s Punch

Ginger punch flavoured with lemon juice and sweetened with honey and molasses. Must be served in a jam jar with ice and berries. Banjo accompaniment is optional.

6. Blasted Church’s Hatfield’s Fuse

This Okanagan Valley white wine has a complex aroma of tropical and orchard fruits with a sweet note of citrus. Perfect for after work in the garden with a few friends.

5. Iced Coffee

Make it yourself or have your local barista pour you one before heading back to the office.

4. Hefeweisen

A traditional wheat beer served with lemon in a tall chilled glass. Granville Island Brewery makes an affordable and tasty Hef.

3. 7-Eleven Slurpee

Watch out for the brain freeze. Nothing like cooling off with a sugary treat from your childhood. Be careful of the sugar crash.

2. Classic Mojito

White rum. Sugar. Lime juice. Sparkling soda water. Mint. Crushed ice.

1. Water

The perfect drink for all those summer activities. Just remember to spend your nights on a luxury Vancouver mattress. Stay thirsty my friends.

Five Hidden Beaches Around Vancouver

English Bay is too crowded, Kits is full of jocks and Wreck Beach has lost its appeal. So where do you find that perfect piece of sand, that’s family friendly, clean and away from the public eye?

Simmons Mattress Gallery recommends the following hideaways:

1. Cates Park

A playground for the kids, a beautiful lawn to tan on and a boat dock to launch your crabbing vessel. Barely used by tourists, this is the perfect beach to get away from the masses. The only drawback is a lack of sand. Interesting fact: the Salish peoples named the area Whey-ah-wichen, which loosely translates as ‘facing the wind.’

2. Centennial Beach

Located in Tsawwassen, on the beautiful coastline of Boundary Bay, this beach has an extremely shallow tidal plain. When the tide goes out, there are literally kilometres of sandy beach to explore. This beach is great for skim boarders and kite enthusiasts. The shallow plain allows for warmer waters, perfect for the wee ones to splash around in.

3. White Pine Beach

This beach is found on Sasamat Lake in Port Moody. Being on a lake, the water is considerably warmer than the ocean. There also lots of trails to explore on the lake’s perimeter. Bring your own canoe or kayak or rent one on site. Transit users can catch a direct bus at the Coquitlam bus centre.

4. Jug Island Beach

The most remote of the beach locations mentioned, this one takes a bit of a hike to get to. But trust us, it’s worth it. With an incredible view of Indian Arm, this waterfront paradise is located in Belcarra Regional Park. The water is a little chilly, but fairly calm.

5. Stearman Beach

Tucked away in West Vancouver, this beach is a great for curious kiddies. There are a number of creeks flowing into the bay that provide hours of entertainment and educational opportunities. Parking is very limited, so come early and enjoy the morning sun.

Top Ten Mattress Overheards

If you keep your ears open, you can pick-up the craziest conversations. Here are a few of the funniest mattress overheards we’ve eavesdropped on in the Simmons Mattress Gallery showroom:

10. “[Child's name] may think she’s a princess, but there is no way we are buying her a Queen. Where are the twins?

9. “Let’s try not to get red wine on this one.

8. “Forget Mexico. I’d rather spend eight years on this, then two weeks with your mother. Trust me. We can afford it.

7. “I’m just gonna shut my eyes for a few hours? Take the keys and pick up the kids at five.

6. “We’re moving the flat screen to the bedroom. I’m not leaving this bed for the next six months.

5. “Yeah, I know it’ll limit motion transfer. That sounds great. But what about your snoring? Seriously, I can’t take it anymore!

4. “So we buy this one and give the old one to your aunt. It’s not like those springs will be getting any exercise with her on it.

3. “No, we are definitely not taking the mattress from the alley. God, you’re cheap.

2. “Remember that weekend in Tofino? We buy this mattress and you won’t need to go to the gym ever again. That’s a promise.

1. “Forget breakfast! We’re having all of our meals on this bed.

Marijuana Affects Your Sleep

Last week, in our article “Comic Sleeping Positions,” we briefly touched on the topic of alcohol as a sleep inducer. We mentioned that alcohol may have the power to put us to bed, but ultimately, it does more damage than good. Alcohol use can disturb our sleep rhythms and cause us to wake periodically throughout the night. It also forces us to leave our beds for the bathroom, another unneeded disturbance.

This week, Simmons Mattress Gallery would like to turn our attention to another recreational relaxing agent, marijuana.

It is no secret that many British Columbians enjoy the odd toke from time to time and seems that use of the drug has increased in our Province. Public pressure has worked to relax the criminal fines surrounding marijuana use, as more and more people see it as a personal choice, not a criminal act. It is also being used to treat a number of medical ailments.

But while marijuana use may be increasing, so are the studies surrounding the side effects of pot smoking.

At a recent sleep conference in Minneapolis, University of Pennsylvania psychiatrist, Dr. Michael Grandner, presented findings that showed that marijuana use can have many of the same troubling sleep side effects as alcohol.

The study was done with participants between the ages of 20 and 59. The strongest correlation between marijuana use and sleep disturbance was found with participants who had started pot smoking before the age of 15. These users were twice as likely to have severe sleep problems.

More research is definitely needed, but users should be aware of the possible damage that weed may have on their sleep schedules. With increased research, comes the need for increased education. The public needs to be better educated on the ramifications of using recreational drugs, especially when it comes to one of our basic needs: sleep.

The Top Ten Signs Summer is Coming to Vancouver

10. Border lineups

Better tack on an extra two hours for your trip to Seattle this weekend. It’s crazy to think that Europeans can travel between countries with hardly any thing more than a signpost.

9. The roof is off

The $560 million roof is retracted at BC Place. Wait. Was that a raindrop? Better close it back up.

8. English Bay is packed

Did you know that the smiles on the Laughing Men extend two centimeters when the temperature gets above 20° Celsius. Fact!

7. No one is bitching about the Canucks

The city takes a two-month break from whining about our beloved Canucks. Sleep now Trevor; the honeymoon is coming to an abrupt end.

6. Gas prices are ridiculous

As soon as people start to abandon their cars for walking or riding to work, the government jacks the gas prices. Well, that’s our theory. Don’t hold us to it.

5. Stan from accounting is talking about his Grind time

Let’s all stand and give him a round of applause. Well-done Stan. Can’t wait to hear about your paddleboard adventures. Yes, that’s sarcasm.

4. The peppermint tents are up

Four new plays for the summer of 2014. The curtain rises on June 11th. This summer’s Bard offerings: “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” “The Tempest,” “Cymbeline” and “Equivocation,” a play by Bill Cain.

3. It’s raining

Rain spells the coming of every season in Vancouver. Remember folks: It’s what keeps it green.

2. The city is full of pink and purple rhododendron bushes

Douglas Coupland remarked that rhododendron green was an official colour in Vancouver. But for these early days of summer, brilliant coloured flowers hide the green. Thank you Ted and Mary Grieg for your marvelous gift to Vancouver.

1. The bike lanes are full

Those empty Vancouver bike lanes that you cursed at all winter are finally full with environmentally friendly commuters. Don’t hate. Join them!

Grouse Grind Reopens For 2014

Grinders! Are you ready?!?!

The Grouse Grind is reopening for the 2014 summer season.

The 2.9 kilometre hike has been receiving its annual upgrade over the last few weeks, as choppers fly in the needed materials to make repairs to the trail.

The vertical hike, one of the most popular in the Greater Vancouver area, is a competitive training ground for many locals and visiting amateurs.

The average time is between 90 and 120 minutes, but for most veterans, any time worth consideration is well under an hour.

For those of you up for the hike, we hope you’ve been hitting your gym’s stairmaster in preparation. But more importantly, we hope you have been getting the rest you need. Sleep is one of the most important parts of any training regime. Eight to nine hours a night is optimal. Any more or any less and you could be turning back at the 3/4 mark of the trail. We call that ‘the descent of shame.’ Kidding.

If you aren’t getting enough sleep these days, it could be your mattress. Simmons Mattress Gallery has a full showroom of beds that will provide you with an undisturbed, restful sleep – perfect for the North Shore’s ’steps of death.’

Coupland’s ‘Gumhead’

The Vancouver Art Gallery is bringing a new public art feature to the Robson Square Plaza that relies on public ‘chewing’ interaction. Created by local artist, Douglas Coupland, the piece features a 7-foot tall self-portrait bust of the artist. Temporarily titled ‘gumhead,’ the artwork encourages the public to add their chewing material to the sculpture. The hope being, that in a matter of months, Coupland’s face will be completely covered with a patchwork layer of saliva infused sweet bubble cud.

The gallery has described the piece as “a gum-based, crowd-sourced, publicly interactive, social-sculpture self-portrait.” It is one of fifteen works commissioned by the VAG as part of NEXT: A Series of Artist Projects from the Pacific Rim.

The bust is being installed this week on the grassy knoll of the southeast corner of Robson plaza. The official unveiling will occur on May 31st. The bust will remain at this location until September 1st.

The gumhead will be part of the plaza’s summer theme: Urban Reef. The reef project is the latest winner in the Robson Redux design competition, a contest open to local and foreign designers for re-imagining the public space outside of the VAG, between Hornby and Howe street.

Coupland’s work may have been inspired by other public ‘gum’ works. Anyone who has visited Seattle’s Pike Place Market has probably witnessed the Market Theatre Gum Wall. The wall, located in an alley just behind the market, is a kaleidoscope of used gum that has become an Instagram staple for visitors to the Emerald City. Another public gum work can be found in Berlin, on one of the wall sections from the now dismantled Berlin Wall.

For those hoping to be a part of the project, we suggest a multicoloured, HubbaBubba style, chewing addition. It’ll standout and add a bit of flare to the standard spearmint Dentyne swabs.

The Love Drug

Dr. Seus: “You know you’re in love when you can’t fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams.”

Love is a strange drug. It infects our brain and leaves us helpless to our basic desires. It consumes our thoughts and places all our other obligations second. It even has the power to reduce our basic need for food, water and our favourite subject, sleep.

Many would attest that during the initial stages of a romantic relationship our desire for sleep is extremely limited. Our sole preoccupation is the affection we have for another. Lying in bed, our racing heart struggles to slow down, as we lose precious hours of shut-eye to love’s all consuming hold.

You would think this would leave us tired and grumpy, but love’s sweet cocktail prevents us from feeling the effects of sleep loss by releasing hormones that produce natural rewards for our brain. An increase in neurotransmitters such as dopamine, cortisol and oxytocin, create a pleasure state, similar to the feelings artificially created by drugs such as caffeine, sugar and cocaine. Our ‘love high’ boosts our energy, reducing our need for the mattress.

When we do sleep, the quality of our rest is actually quite high. In a study published in the Journal of Adolescent Health, by Professor Serge Brand of the University of Basel in Switzerland, teens in “early-stage intense romantic love” were found to sleep, on average, one hour less than their loveless counterparts. But the same study found that the young people in the intense love group, were less likely to wake-up. Their sleep was superior in quality.

Unfortunately, there have been no studies done with groups over 25. One would reason that the same hormonal spikes would be visible, but on a lesser degree. Adulthood tends to pacify the intensity of young love.

So, if you do find yourself in a new all-engrossing relationship, relax. Your body is designed to help you through it. You might lose a little sleep, which we never like to see, but your passion will level out your basic needs.

Ten Sleep Quotes We Wish We Wrote (And One We Did)

This week we came across a list in the Huffington Post of the top sleep quotes. We narrowed the list to ten and added a few comments of our own:

10. “People who say they sleep like a baby usually don’t have one.” – Leo J. Burke

9. “There is more refreshment and stimulation in a nap, even of the briefest, than in all the alcohol ever distilled.” – Ovid

  • We didn’t know Ovid was such a fan of the wobbly-pops. But we definitely agree with his statement. When given the option of retiring to your bed, or staying up for one more nightcap, always go with the latter. You’ll thank us in the morning.

8. “Early to bed and early to rise, makes a man [or woman] healthy, wealthy, and wise.” – Benjamin Franklin

  • It’s been consistently proven that a solid sleep schedule improves your health, your potential at work and your cerebral processing.

7. “Never waste any time you can spend sleeping.” -Frank H. Knight

  • We’re looking at you, Late Night Talk Shows.

6. “Eat Healthily, sleep well, breathe deeply, move harmoniously.” – Jean-Pierre Barral

  • Pretty sure the first three are the pillars of a happy life. The last one, well, why not. Who doesn’t like to skip down the sidewalk.

5. “There is a time for many words, and there is also a time for sleep.” - Homer

  • Said the man whose prose ran on for days…

4. “Sleep is the best meditation.” – Dalai Lama

3. “It is better to sleep on things beforehand than lie awake about them afterward.” -Baltasar Gracian

  • This had us slightly confused at first, but after a short nap, it made total sense.

2. “[Sleep is] the golden chain that ties health and our bodies together.” – Thomas Dekker

  • ‘Gold’ seems to be a theme this week. A big shout out to all the Olympians who participated in the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi.

1. “Renew your estranged relationship with sleep – you will be more productive, more effective, more creative, and more likely to enjoy your life.” – Arianna Huffington

  • A nod of the cap to the Huffington Post for their inspiring list.

And one bonus line:

“At Simmons Mattress Gallery, we’re here to help you sleep better.”

Norwegian Olympic Secrets: Babes In the Cold

Could a bizarre childcare practice be the reason for Norway’s dominance at the Winter Olympics in Sochi? North Americans may be shocked to learn that Norwegian childcare workers and new moms place their children in buggies outside their homes to nap.

Tour a neighbourhood in Norway and you might see a half dozen carriages lined up just outside the patio doors. Closer inspection might show that young tots occupy most of them. Crazy!

Researchers, even in Norway, don’t seem to be able to offer any scientific proof that the odd practice is beneficial to child development. Dr Kai-Håkon Carlsen, a Norwegian child allergy specialist believes the only reason parents and child workers continue to put children outside to nap is tradition. In an interview with Norway’s largest newspaper, Calrsen said: “As far as I know, there is no research to support this issue.” He continued: ” Inhalation of very cold air can be harmful to a child’s airways…Very cold temperatures can also cause frostbite unless the baby is properly dressed.”

So why continue with the tradition? Norwegians are strong believers that fresh air is healthy for development – even cold air.

But there are limits. Most childcare groups in the Scandinavian country freeze the practice (sort of speak) if temperatures drop to minus ten or colder.

MINUS TEN! Geeez louise.

Even if this practice is a distant reason for the recent Norwegian success at the games, would you really want to subject your child to those kind of sleeping conditions. We think not.

RoboBed

“You have 20 seconds to comply.

You now have 15 seconds to comply…

Four, three, two, one.. I am now authorized to use physical force.”

The ED-209 demonstration, from the film Robocop, highlighted the danger of replacing our current systems with computerized artificial intelligence – failure is inevitable.

What does all this have to do with mattresses? At the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Nevada, a new kind of bed was unveiled, a bed that immediately reminded us of the ED-209.

Sleep Number X12 is a new mattress, ready for market. The bed is loaded with circuitry, sensors and dare we say, needless technological accessories, to improve your sleep through monitoring, sleep feedback and voice activated pampering.

The bed uses a software program known as SleepIQ. With the help of a number of sensors, the program monitors and tracks users movements, breathing and heart rate. This data is used to make charts, for a visible log of your sleep habits. The bed’s software is compatible with most smartphones and tablets for easy viewing.

The bed features voice-activated controls to adjust the bed’s firmness and elevation. The voice activation setting also enables you to engage the massage settings and adjust the light on your bedside table (also included). It’s basically the clapper on steroids.

Our biggest beef with the cyborg bed is the amount of electrical wires running through the actual mattress. Would you real feel safe with that much voltage beneath you? It goes against all the science that tells us never to sleep with our electronics.

And, like a modern vehicle with a plethora of added electronic features, you have an increase for failure. If one system goes down, does it domino and take down the rest? Will your bed be stuck in the TV viewing position for months? Yikes!

We like to prioritize comfort. That’s why Simmons Beautyrest will always focus our attention on beds that offer our customers the perfect sleep night-in and night-out. Our Beautyrest mattresses are made out of pocket-coils, memory foam and luxurious fabrics, all the elements you need to make a world-class mattress.

The best part, you won’t have to apply for a second mortgage to buy one. All our Beautyrest beds are on sale at our Broadway location. Instead of spending $7,999, the asking price of the Sleep Number x12, you can spend less than a $1,000 and receive a bed that will last you for the next 8-10 years.

Sleep without the fear of technological failure. Sleep on a Beautyrest.

Roosting

FYI: Birds do not sleep in nests.

Nests are safe places for birds to leave their eggs; they are not self-made sleeping quarters.

That being said, birds have been known to nod off, while sitting atop their eggs. But the only reason they have chosen the nest for rest is to keep the eggs warm.

Birds roost.

When a bird seeks out a roosting location they are looking for two things: warmth and safety. Songbirds sleep off the ground to avoid predators but larger birds can sleep anywhere, from on the water, to branches, to on the ground.

Birds that sleep in bushes, on branches or on power lines, have flexor tendons in their legs that maintain a fixed grip on their chosen perch. These tendons only release the grip, established by the bird’s feet, when the leg is outstretched. This trait allows some birds the ability to sleep upside down.

Birds often flock together for safety while they sleep. The birds in the center of the formation are able to completely nod off, while the ones on the outer ring adopt a unihemispheric slow-wave sleep. During this kind of sleep, the birds keep one eye open to watch for predators. Half of their brain is allowed to rest while the other half is on moderate alert. Throughout the night, the birds on watch switch positions with the inner circle, giving the entire flock a chance for consistent rest.

A great local example of this sleep formation is the flock of crows that roost along Boundry Road, on the border of Vancouver and Burnaby. You can see these crows moving into position an hour before dusk every night. It is one of the coolest natural phenomenons in Vancouver.

Fun Fact: A flock of crows is not a murder. Poets, not the scientific community, adopted the term ‘murder of crows’. Birders and scientists use the common term ‘flock’ to describe a group of crows.

Point Grey Road Closure

Vancouver is heavily invested in changing the commuter habits of its residents. The Point Grey Road bike lanes are a part of this commitment. On January 18th, like it or hate it, Point Grey Road, from MacDonald to Alma, will be closed to commuter traffic.

The area is being rezoned for local vehicle, pedestrian and bicycle traffic only. The conversion is part of a plan to increase bike access on Vancouver’s West Side, connecting the Jericho bike path with Kitsilano.

Work began last fall on the south side of the Burrard Bridge to streamline the bicycle traffic coming and going from the Burrard Bridge bike lanes.

The plan will also support the much larger, Greenest City 2020 Action Plan, already in place. Greenest City hopes to make walking, cycling and public transit the preferred transportation options by 2020. The specific target of this plan is to reduce the distance of vehicular travel driven by each resident by 20% from levels recorded in 2007.

City planners project that the road changes will temporarily increase the number of vehicles travelling on the neighbouring streets. The planners predict that traffic will increase on MacDonald from 10,000 users per day to 17,000. West 4th, they predict, will jump from 15,000 to 20,000 and West Broadway from 18,000 to 21,000.

Hopefully these numbers will decrease as more commuters buy into the idea of commuting via greener methods.

Sidenote: Simmons Mattress Gallery is located along an excellent transit line. Our mattress store is also walking distance from the Canada Line connection at Cambie and Broadway.

Golden Moments from the Globes

The Golden Globes were last night and although the shock value wasn’t on par with the Ricky Gervais broadcasts of year’s past, the night did have a few OMG moments. In descending order, here are our top five:

5. Gravity’s Pull

While gravity rarely plays a role in the Botox-friendly crowd (zing), last night’s first laugh came at the expense of George Clooney and Sandra Bullock space drama. It was actually more to do with Clooney’s dating habits. The line from Tina Fey: “George Clooney would rather float away in space and die than spend one more minute with a woman his own age.” Ouch.

4. Woody (Not the Cowboy)

Diane Keaton accepted the Cecil B. DeMille award for Lifetime Achievement on behalf of Woody Allen. The speech was a nice homage to the ‘film-a-year’ auteur, but she punctuated her final point on friendship with an odd cappella performance of the Girl Scouts song, “Make New Friends.” Love Keaton, but stick with the acting.

3. I’m Doing Matt Damon

Matt Damon seemed to be the butt of quite a few jokes over the course of the evening. The best was an impersonation by Melissa McCarthey. She nailed the mannerisms. But Damon took it all in stride, even referring to himself as the ‘garbage man’ during his acceptance speech for the TV drama “Beyond the Candelabra.” Amy Poehler had given him this title during the opening.

2. Crazy Lady

Jacqueline Bisset was called up to the stage to accept the Best Supporting Actress for her role in “Dancing on the Edge.” What happened next, well… Words cannot describe. Here’s a clip:

Somebody shouldn’t mix her painkillers with alcohol.

1. One Last Zinger

The last joke of the night was aimed at Hollywood’s, golden son, Leonardo DiCaprio. Tina Fey introduced the final presenter of the night with this not-likely-to-be-forgotten line: “And now, like a supermodel’s vagina, let’s all give a warm welcome to Leonardo DiCaprio.”

Bonus entry:

Amy Poehler, making out with Bono after her name was called to accept the award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Comedy or Musical. She went for it. Fortunately, so did Bono. Nick Kroll, Amy’s boyfriend and fellow comedian tweeted this message after the kiss: “Hey Bono, watch your back.”

2014 Movie Preview

The Golden Globes are less than a week away and Hollywood has swung it’s focus to the year that was. But while the stars and suits congratulate each other on 2013’s cinematic offerings, Simmons Mattress Gallery would like to take a look to the future and see what the celluloid world holds in store for 2014.

Here are six titles that have caught our attention:

Dumb and Dumber To

No, that is not a spelling mistake. Loyd and Harry (Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels) are back for another low-brow adventure directed by the Farrelly Brothers. Expect an abnormal amount of poop jokes and possibly the return of Cam Neely as Seabass.

Maleficent

The classic Disney tale of Sleeping Beauty gets turned on its head and retold through the eyes of the antagonist, the Queen of Darkness, Maleficent. M., considered one of the scariest villains in the Disney canon, will be played by Angelina Jolie. The beauty put-to-sleep will be played by Dakota’s younger sister, Elle Fanning.

The Lego Movie

The Lego game franchise has already tackled such titles as Harry Potter, Pirates of the Caribbean and their highly successful Star Wars series. For 2014, they plan to abandon the gaming console for the big screen. Will Arnett, Morgan Freeman and Elizabeth Banks will lend their voices to the yellow-headed adventurers.

A Million Ways To Die In The West

A gunslinging love story from the maker of Family Guy. Random… This western will star Amanda Seyfried, Charlize Theron, Liam Neeson and Neil Patrick Harris.

Hercules: The Legend Begins / Hercules: The Thracian Wars

2014 will offer up a double shot of Hercules films. The Legend Begins will star Kellan Lutz of Twilight and Immortals fame. The Thracian Wars, based on the graphic novel will be released five months after and will star the ‘peoples champ,’ Dwayne Johnson, known to the wrestling world as The Rock.

Sleep Texting

This post belongs in the “Believe-It-Or-Not” folder.

A new condition is afflicting North American teens: Sleep texting is on the rise. Yes, it may be hard to believe, but teens are so wired to their devices these days, that they are actually writing and responding to texts in their sleep.

Elizabeth Dowdell, a nursing professor at Villanova University, is studying the phenomenon. She claims the teens use their phones in a semiconscious state between sleep and awake. “The phone will beep, they’ll answer the text,” says Dowdell. “They’ll either respond in words or gibberish.”

The condition is a direct result of the increased number of young people who go to bed with their phones. In a survey done by the Pew Research Center, four out of five teens admitted to having their phones within arms reach while they slept.

The same research centre claims that the average North American teen sends an average of 60 texts per day. With that many messages, it’s understandable that teens are having trouble disengaging from their devices when it’s time to sleep.

The sleep texts may seem like a harmless response to a hyperconnected society, but the condition does represent a harmful sleep interruption. The teens may not consciously remember texting, but their bodies most certainly do. Any interruption, especially one that requires reading and writing, is disruptive to the brain’s rest period.

Dowdell believes the only answer is a physical disengagement. Parents should encourage a technology-free bedroom, or at the very least, recommend or demand that their children turn their ringers off while they sleep.

Top Ten Blogs From 2013

Everyone has a Best of List, so we went along with the trend and compiled a list of our 10 favourite posts from the Mattress Vancouver blog.

We Have the List!

Movie Makeovers – February 22, 2013
Our top five Hollywood make-up transformations. Number five is Ralph Fiennes as Voldermort. Kind of reminds us of the thin prince, David Bowie. Without the androgyny.

Food to Avoid if You’re Having Trouble Sleeping – March 3, 2013
We’ve listed six items to avoid before bed for a calm night’s sleep. The most surprising food to avoid is oranges. Apparently the acidity in oranges can keep you from enjoying your Beautyrest mattress.

Keep It Tucked – March 18, 2013
Before you start to imagine that scene from Silence of the Lambs, this article is about keeping your ‘bed’ tucked and tidy. Studies have proven that people who make their bed feel far better about going to sleep than people who leave their sheets in disarray.

Cat Nap – March 30, 2013
Our feline friends are masters of the mid-day nap. Take notes.

Prioritizing Sleep Does Not Make You a Bad Parent – April 16, 2013
An article that every new parent should read. Remember, you need sleep too.

Advances in Bed Bug Prevention – June 1, 2013
We’ve dedicated a number of articles to bed bugs over the years. This particular article includes some positive news from the field. Always exercise caution when offering your bed to guests.

Cool Facts About Sleep From Ancient History – June 14, 2013
Did you know the first documented observation of circadian rhythms was written down by Androsthenes, a scribe of Alexander the Great? He observed the daily movements of the tamarind tree, a vegetation that closes its leaves at night.

Don’t Sweat the Technique: Sleeping Through the Heat – July 13, 2013
A few tips for summer snoozing. Contrary to the title this post has nothing to do with the classic Eric B. and Rakim beat.

Mattress Fads ( Part 2: The Hobo’s Space Saver ) – August 18, 2013
A brief history of the Murphy Bed. Included in the post is a five minute YouTube video of Charlie Chaplin using the Murphy bed as a prop for his physical comedy. The clip is taken from the 1916 short film, “One A.M.”

The Russian Rocket Flies to the Rafters – November 17, 2013
Pavel Bure is the Vancouver Canucks only legitimate franchise superstar. Sure the twins and Naslund have put up incredible numbers and Trevor Linden was the epitome of what a team captain should be, but Bure had that indefinable flare that makes an athlete extraordinary. Jordan had it, Gretzky had it, Crosby has it and Bure had it in spades. It’s unfortunate that he had to leave our city under a cloud. His jersey retirement was a peace offering of sorts and a wonderful way to remember those magical moments he gave to us all.

Vancouver Holiday Spectacular

Do you have family visiting over the holidays? Are you looking for fun, seasonal activities to take them on? Here’s a list of our Top Ten Vancouver Holiday events:

10. FlyOver Canada

  • The new IMax exhibit at Canada Place has been a huge hit with locals and visitors to our city. This month, the FlyOver received a holiday makeover, with a pre-show Christmas experience. Head down Friday at 5 pm for an amazing ice carving demonstration.

9. Canadian Christmas at Canada Place

  • The ‘five-sail’ location features another Christmas exhibit in its conference facility. The ‘Canadian Christmas‘ exhibit hosts an ice rink, a return of the Woodwards window displays, Santa visits on the weekend and non-perishable food drive. For the latter event, the organizers are hoping to fill an entire container crate full of goods for the Vancouver Food Bank.

8. Skating at Robson Square

  • The artificial pond is back at Howe and Robson. Come down with your own skates and blade for free, or rent a pair for $4. Skate till 9 pm during the week and 11 pm on the weekends. Don’t worry if you can’t make it down over the holidays; the ice rink plans to stay open until February 28th.

7. “It’s Snowing on Saltspring Island”

  • The Arts Club Theatre is performing Bill Bannister’s search for the meaning of Christmas. The classic west coast tale will be running until December 28th.

6. Carol Ships

  • The aquatic ‘parade of lights’ leaves Coal Harbour nightly and tours around the Vancouver harbour. You can add your voice to the crowd or sit back and take in the music. Here is a list of the cruise ships participating in this years flotilla.

Avoid These Holidays Treats to Keep the Tummy Tight

It seems that every other night this month is a holiday celebration, staff party or family feast. With all the extra socializing, comes a whole host of extra calories. Keep that belly tight and try to avoid these sinful, seasonal delights:

Egg Nog: The quintessential holiday beverage is a weight-watchers liquid nightmare. Each cup of nog holds about 300 calories. That’s the equivalent of one small bowl of ice cream. Add a little rum and your tacking on another 75-100 calories, depending on how heavy you pour.

Candy Nuts: Not thirsty? Just gonna stay with a few dried snacks? Well keep your hands out of the candied nut bowl. Each 1/4 cup of nuts has about 140 calories of sugar alone. Add to that, another 150 calories for the nuts themselves and you’re coming close to a glass of nog.

Butter Tarts: The name says it all. They may look small and helpless, but these tiny assassins each carry close to 330 calories. Three of these and you’re looking at more calories then you’d receive from an average dinner.

Pecan Pie: Speaking of desserts… Pecan Pie is by far the most dangerous of the post dinner delicacies. One slice runs about 640 calories. That’s an hour on the elliptical. No one has time for an ‘extra’ hour at the gym over the holidays.

Peppermint Mocha: A grande cup of this holiday shopper’s ‘energy drink’ contains over 50 grams of sugar, with 410 calories. It’ll get you moving through the crowds, but that sugar spike comes with a sugar crash.

Sausage Rolls: Zero nutrition. We won’t even scare you with the caloric intake. Just trust us, you want to stay as far away from these pastry rolls as possible. Try a baby carrot instead – Frosty has been asking for a nose reduction.

If you indulge, remember that one of the best things for keeping the pounds off is a full night’s rest. Catch up on yours this December on a Simmons Beautyrest.

Reducing Teenage Angst with Sleep Supervision

Teenagers crave freedom. They want their own space, they want to cultivate their own opinions and they want to constantly express their individuality. As parents, we need to grant them the room they need to develop, but we also need to help them maintain a healthy lifestyle, one that lets them exercise their full potential.

A study done by the University of Cincinnati and published in the Journal of Health and Social Behaviour, suggests that teenagers whose parents monitor their behaviour, were far more likely to practice healthier sleeping patterns than adolescents who were not monitored.

Sleep is central to a healthy lifestyle and teenagers need more sleep than any of us. The National Sleep Foundation recommends 9 1/4 hours a night for teenagers. This helps their concentration at school and increases their energy for extracurricular activities. It also improves their mood, which we all know is prone to heavy pendulum swings.

Tracking their sleep schedules is difficult, but important. A simple nightly visit to their bedroom will show you are still keeping a watchful eye on their habits. You can also include a general conversation about the benefits of sleep. Here are a few general talking points for encouraging an earlier bedtime:

Your teen may also have troubles getting up in the morning. This is natural and part of their biological development. Instead of getting mad at them for missing their alarm, poke your head in their room and offer a gentle reminder.

The Cincinnati survey also found that girls were far more likely to have sleep issues than boys.

If you find that after all your encouragement, your teenager is still not following a healthy sleep schedule, spend the money and improve their mattress Vancouver adolescents will love the gesture. It shows you care and that’s what really matters.

A Look Back at Divided Sleep

Did you know that the idea of eight ‘consecutive’ hours of sleep a night is a fairly modern convention? Research published by Roger Ekirch, a professor of History at Virginia Tech, suggests that as recently as the 18th Century, human beings adopted a bi-modal sleep pattern, consisting of a first and second sleep shift.

The divided sleep schedule was documented in literature, court transcripts and private journals. One doctor’s message, referenced in Ekirch’s book “At Day’s Close: Night in Times Past,” claims that the ideal time for study is between ‘first sleep’ and ’second sleep.’

Ekirch’s work shows that after an initial four or hours of sleep, humans would wake-up and spend an hour or so mediating, reading, talking with their bed partners or in some cases engaging in coitus. A reference from a personal letter, also written by a doctor, asserts that the working class have more children because they have sex after their ‘first sleep.’

Ekirch believes the change to a consecutive sleep schedule came about as a reaction to the introduction of streetlights and indoor electrical lights. These two modernizations allowed people to work and socialize later into the night. This limited the time between ‘turning-in’ and the onset of daylight and made the bi-modal system obsolete.

In a time when our whole lives are shared online, over texts and on the phone, it might not hurt society to return to a bi-modal sleep pattern. A little midnight meditation, without our devices, would probably be a refreshing break. But then again, who sleeps further than three feet from their phone, tablet or laptop. We’re sure that bonus hour would be partly spent checking our Facebook.

Regardless, if you do find yourself slipping into a pattern of divided sleep, don’t freak out. It’s worked before and it could work for you. Give it a shot and send us a comment. We’d love to hear if it works.

Sidebar: New parents can disregard this entire post. Your sleep schedule is more akin to a ‘get it while I can‘ pattern. Good luck with that. It does get better…

The Russian Rocket Flies to the Rafters

Let’s all agree that Pavel Bure is the most entertaining sports personality in Vancouver’s history. You can argue his heart was only in it for about four of the seven years he played for the Vancouver Canucks, but he still managed to astound viewers with his speed, creativity and undeniable skill. He was a superstar, one that captivated a hockey market that was desperate for a highlight reel phenom.

Last week the Vancouver Canucks organization honoured Bure’s gift to our city by retiring his number ‘10′ jersey to the rafters of Rogers Arena, the highest honour possible for a player in professional sports. Bure, along with his mother and his wife (who threatened to steal the show with her choice of dress) were joined at centre ice by the Aquilini family, Mike Gillis, Pat Quinn and Bure’s longtime friend and teammate Gino Odjick. Jim Hughston, was the MC for the ceremony and kept the proceedings moving at a nice pace.

When the jersey was finally lifted, there were less tears than the Linden ceremony, but a definite communal feeling of ‘if only he had stayed and remained healthy.’

Despite that melancholy feeling, Vancouver Canuck fans will always the memories of Bure’s magical performances on ice. Here are a two of our favourite Russian Rocket blasts:

  • We’ll start with a personal recount of his jaw-dropping goal against the Boston Bruins in the 1996-97 preseason: “My friends and I had purchased ‘Ice Packs’ for the Canucks 96-97 season in order to secure tickets to The World Cup of Hockey game been played in Vancouver on August 29th. That game was amazing! Unfortunately, the Canadian team went on to place second in the tournament behind the United States. Our Ice Packs however, included, I believe, eight regular season games and two preseason tilts. One of the preseason games was against Boston. On September 25th, we took our seats in the nosebleeds of GM Place (now Rogers Arena), unaware that we were about to watch history in the making. On a penalty kill, Bure received an errant pass from Adam Oates that slipped by Ray Bourque at the Canucks Blue line. Bure gained control of the puck just over the centre ice line and was at full speed by the time he crossed Boston’s blue line. At the harsh marks he started his cut across the ice, still at full speed. What we saw in those next few seconds was a blur of skate, puck and stick. The puck was already in the net before any of us knew what had happened. It was only after watching the replay on the jumbotron that we recognized what we had seen (or not seen) firsthand. Bure had faked the Boston goalie, Scott Bailey, by passing the puck back to his skate and then kicked it back to his stick. It was a thing of beauty that happened so fast it needed multiple replays to fully comprehend.

  • “This is the greatest moment in Vancouver Canucks history,” was the cry from colour commentator Tom Larscheid after Bure streaked in, deked and put the puck past Mike Vernon in double overtime of game seven against the Calgary Flames in 1994. It was a beautiful goal. The rocket may have been offside by a few inches, but what ref would ever call that in a game seven. Almost as beautiful as the goal, was Bure’s boyish celebration.  He tossed his gloves and stick to the side and threw himself into his teammates, arms stretched as wide as his smile. It was pure magic. Goosebumps…

Giving Pavel Bure his due was difficult for many fans who still, to this day, have bitter feelings about the way the Russian star left the organization. But when reliving those goals and the personal moments of pure joy they provided, it’s hard to raise an argument for not including Bure in the franchise’s highest rafters.

Morning Back Ache

The British Chiropractic Association has released a new poll that shows one in three British citizens wake up with back or neck pain. Rishi Loatey, a chiropractor and spokesman for the BCA believes that changing your mattress every seven years can alleviate unnecessary morning pain.
This practice, along with proper lifting techniques can dramatically reduce the need for chiropractic work.
Here are a few rules for proper lifting:

  • Always enlist the help of equipment to help you lift heavy objects. Don’t soldier all the weight when a mechanical device can reduce the burden. It might take a few extra minutes for setup, but your back will thank you.
  • Never twist at the waist while lifting.
  • Bend with the knees and keep your back straight.
  • If you need to do repetitive lifts, take short breaks so as not to over exert your muscles.
  • Always stretch before beginning repetitive lifts

Follow these steps and keep your mattress upgraded and hopefully your mornings will be free of pain.
For a new mattress look no further than Vancouver’s luxury mattress company, Simmons Mattress Gallery. Our 75% off sale is continuing this fall, so take advantage of the deals being offered on our whole line of Beautyrest mattresses.

Draw By NIght

Attention all doodlers, designers and creative types! Vancouver is now hosting a new outlet for your artistic endeavours. Draw by Night is holding bi-monthly drawing parties at the Vancouver Film School Cafe at 390 West Hastings Street.

The next party is tonight, from 6-8pm. The theme will be video games of a spooky nature.

The parties are intended to promote creativity, imagination and the collaboration of local artists in the Vancouver community. Participants draw on communal rolls of paper, spread out over long tables. You can bring your own artistic implements or use the creative tools supplied. It’s completely free and tons of fun.

Previous parties have included author readings, live music and guest artists. One show incorporated a live stream from the studio of Cian Donnelly in Rome.

Participants are encouraged to use twitter and other social media platforms to share their work and promote future events.

Once again, the event is completely free of charge and no previous artistic background is required. Just show up, have fun and let your creativity flow.

Draw a mattress themed composition, send us a photo to our twitter feed and we’ll publish your artwork on our blog. Can’t think of any video games involving mattresses, but I’m sure you will come up with something.

For more information on future events visit http://drawbynight.notsosimpleton.com/

Conquering the Snooze Button

“Why do they make the snooze button so big and the ‘turn-off’ alarm switch so small?”

If we had our way, there would be no snooze alarms on any alarm devices. If you set your alarm for 7:00 am, then that is when you should rise. Those brief seven minutes of semi-slumber are doing nothing for you.

We admit, it is another eight minutes you get to spend with your Beautyrest mattress, but really it’s eight valuable minutes you’re losing from your day. Get up! Seize the day and get things rolling.

Here Are 5 Tips for Conquering Your Snooze Addiction

5. Put your alarm clock on the opposite side of your room. Force yourself to get off your mattress and turn it off. The further you place it the better.

4. Set a light timer for the same time as your alarm. Your alarm goes off, the lights go on and the day begins.

3. Multiple alarms makes it harder for your waking brain to find the various snooze functions. The longer you struggle, the closer you are to being fully awake.

2. Putting your coffee maker on a timer is useful for those of us with a strong sense of smell. The promise of caffeine can work wonders. We do not advise the Michael Scott, bacon timer. No one needs a grilled foot.

1. As a last resort, break out the superglue. Fix that snooze button once and for all.

Homelessness Action Week

Homelessness is a hot topic in our city and it has been for years. With the closure of Riverview and other mental health facilities, a great number of mentally ill citizens are living on the street. With plans in place to help the situation any positive news is encouraging.

This week, a new report by the City of Vancouver, shows a sliver of hope. The number of recorded homeless people in Vancouver was down by exactly two this year, when compared to last year’s figures. In 2012, there were 1,602 homeless people living in Vancouver and this year there were 1,600, a drop of two. But more encouraging, of the 1,602 people, 1,327 were able to find sheltered homes. In 2012, the numbers were slightly lower at 1,296.

Other significant numbers in this year’s report show that over 60% of the citizens counted as homeless faced addiction problems, while 46% claimed they had mental illness problems and 34% had a mental disability. Unfortunately these numbers, when compared to earlier years, showed a decrease in general health.

Resolving the issues around homelessness will take the work of our entire community. A good place to start is attending any number of the events planned for Homelessness Action Week. Free educational workshops will be offered in different municipalities around the Lower Mainland from October 13th-19th. In Vancouver, make sure to check out the weeklong art exhibition titled “Out of the Rain.”

Superhero Ball

Our spidey-senses are tingling… But why? Has the waterbed made a comeback? Has the City cancelled the mattress-recycling program? Are Uggs back in style? Let’s hope not.

Maybe our arachnid jitters are a reminder that the Superhero Ball is coming up on Friday, October 4th. The red carpet affair is a must-attend for all spandex-wanna-be-crime fighters. Staged at the Renaissance Vancouver Harbourside Hotel, the event will be a who’s-who of the caped crusade.

Besides the regular Avengers, Chef Keving Greehy will be on hand to mix kryptonite cocktails and danger-filled desserts. Music will be supplied by DJ Southpaw (we think he’s a lefty…) and there will be a costume contest with prizes going to best superhero, supervillain and duo.

The event also promises a super-silent auction, a 50/50 draw and balloon popping prize game, where contestants can win Marriot hotel stays.

But the truly super element of the evening is the fact that all money raised will be donated to the BC Children’s Hospital.

The true sign of a hero is how she/he helps those in need. Come have a hilarious night of costumed fun for a good cause.

Tickets for this event are $30 and are sold through Eventbrite. For further inquires call 604-691-2709. And yes, costumes are required.

Have a great night!

Dunbar Village Harvest Festival

The family fun continues this weekend with the Dunbar Village Harvest Festival. The Fall Fest starts at 9am on Saturday, September 28th and finishes at 3pm. To experience the whole fair, you’ll need to be up early and off your mattress Vancouver neighbourhoods are not known for their Fall Fairs, it’s more of a rural activity, but the Dunbar Village has planned a host of family themed events.

Because of the natural spread of businesses and public spaces along the Dunbar corridor, the festival has been split into three zones:

Dunbar Village North (between 17th and 19th Avenue)

The North End of Dunbar will be the home of the sustainability section of the festival. Bringing the farm to the people, this section will have garden workshops, lessons on how to raise urban chicken (now allowed in Vancouver) and a mobile dairy classroom, where young ones can see the process by which their cereal milk is extracted from cows. Weather permitting, there might also be a ‘hay play.’ Not a 100 percent sure, but we assume that’s like king of the castle, just on a giant mountain of hay.

Dunbar Village Centre (between 26th and 30th)

This is the fun zone! For the kids, they have a bouncy castle, sumo suits, carnival games and community art. For the adults there is a car show, a barbecue and a used booksale. This will also be the site of the live music stage. This year’s musical guests: Music with Marnie (for the kids), the blues pairing, Gary Comeau Duo and cover artists, Rogue Messengers.

Dunbar Village South

Pancakes severed to the first 500 at 9am. The breakfast feast will take place in the IGA parking lot. Other activities in this area include a charity dog wash, circus workshops and the Gratitude Graffiti Project; your guess is as good as ours on that last one.

There will be a free shuttle on hand to facilitate travel between the different zones.

“Road Rash” Art Show

Two Vancouver based companies are coming together this weekend to put on a one-of-a-kind art show in Gastown. Landyachtz Longboards and the Steveston Tattoo Company are combining forces to present an art exhibit of original art painted on handmade longboards. The exhibition is titled, “Road Rash,” and no, it has nothing to do with the Sega Genesis game from your childhood.

Road Rash will feature original works by over two-dozen Canadian tattoo artists. On opening night, Saturday September 28th, a silent auction will be held at The Shop, at 432 Columbia Street. The art will remain on display for two weeks, at the end of which, the new owners will be allowed to pick up their boards.

All proceeds from the event will go to supporting the Arts Umbrella program on Granville Island. Arts Umbrella is a non-profit performing arts studio for children. The studio has classes in visual arts, media, theatre, music and dance. The money raised by Road Rash will help keep this valuable program alive.

Simmons Mattress Gallery considered donating a handful of beds for artists to transform, but we figure the true beauty is always found on the inside of a mattress Vancouver crowds will have to settle for skateboards.

Securing a Commitment

Are you having troubles getting your partner to commit to more than just a verbal acknowledgement of your relationship? Are you tired of dropping hints about moving in together? Want to up the ante? Change your mattress.

Partners who are afraid of commitment tend to idealize their single living dwellings. In order to rationalize their delay in settling down, they focus their attention on how sweet their current residence is.

Getting them out of their comfort cocoon takes a cunning offensive. What you need to do is make your own living arrangement more attractive. That can mean many different things, from keeping up with cleaning, to a well-stocked fridge, to a decent cable package, to the ultimate lure, a new luxury mattress.

We spend more time on our mattress than any other furnishing in our homes. If your mattress exudes opulence, your partner will notice. Guaranteed.

Everyone wants to improve his or her sleep and if you can provide that need to your partner, well the game just swung in your favour.

Improve your commitment strategy with a trip to Simmons Mattress Gallery.  We have the finest beds in the business at a convenient location on the Broadway corridor. Stop by this week to sleep test some of our mattresses.

The Great Canadian Shore Cleanup

The Great Canadian Shore Cleanup is having their 20th Anniversary this week and to celebrate they are hosting a Thank You Lunch at Iona Beach on September 21st at 10 am.

This incredibly successful program is a staple for fall environmental activities. It dramatically helps reduce the waste on beaches left by the summer crowds.

Over the past twenty years 400,000 participants have managed to remove over 1,000,000 kilos of garbage. The program has become the third largest cleanup in the world.

The cleanup program is a national campaign, with sites in Halifax, Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto. It runs all week from September 21st to September 29th. The initiative is lead by the World Wildlife Federation and the Vancouver Aquarium. This year’s corporate sponsor is Loblaw.

The program is setup to include educational packages for younger volunteers. The focus of the program is empowerment through local participation. Kids take ownership for the beaches in their community. Hopefully this sets in motion a lifetime of environmental stewardship.

This program is effective because the younger generation can see an instant improvement in the areas they work in.

Random Fact: During one cleanup, a few years back,

a participant found an 18k gold ring. What will you find?

Vocabulary Expansion

Oxford Dictionaries Online published a list of the new word submissions for 2013. On the list, is Miley Cyrus’s favourite new dance move ‘twerk’, phone portrait photos known as ’selfless’, and the act of disconnecting, known as ‘digital detox’.

The online version of The Oxford English Dictionary adds approximately a thousand words each year, often entering terms that have been directly pulled from pop culture. The words are not always a product of the current year. The term ‘twerk’ has actually been a part of hip hop culture for close to 20 years. It only gained recognition this year as a popular dance move, thanks to Miley.

More words then ever have a strong connection to social media and our digital environment. As a technology evolves, so does our language.

The mattress world is no different. Simmons Beautyrest mattresses are evolving and with their evolution come a new language for describing the elements and components of mattress design.

Here are three terms ushered in by Beautyrest’s Recharge Mattress Technology:

1. Pocket Coil

2. AirCool Memory Foam

  • A layer of foam that provides pressure relief and temperature control.

3. TruTemp Gel

  • Absorbs and releases excess warmth to maintain a cool consistent sleeping temperature.

Now that your vocabulary has increased, consider using it with your next purchase of a Beautyrest mattress Vancouver residents can purchase these modern miracle machines at Simmons Mattress Gallery on Broadway and Oak Street.

Single In The City

From the outside looking in, single life may seem like a bed of fresh roses – new partners, limited social engagements, periodic lapses in hygiene levels. But, when it comes down to the everyday experience, singledom can be an expensive and lonely experience.

Take grocery shopping for an example. Grocery stores don’t package food for the single professional; they package food for the family of four. That means eating chicken for the next four nights.

Paying for a one-bedroom apartment in Vancouver is like shackling yourself to a literal ball and chain, not the figurative marital status. In a city where rent has skyrocketed, making a run of it as a single income occupant is becoming nearly impossible.

Then there is the mattress issue. No one wants to have a weekend guest over to sleep on a double or twin size mattress. You need at least a Queen to entertain any sense of maturity. But what about during the week, with all that extra space…? That GLORIOUS space!

Really, who needs a partner anyways. All they do is limit the complete enjoyment of your Simmons Beautyrest mattress Vancouver singles are the fortunate ones. Their mattress independence is what keeps the smile on their faces.

It pays to be free!

The Freshman Move

Moving into your first campus dorms is super exciting (especially if it’s co-ed). There is the initial euphoria that freedom provides with no curfew, no supervision and no rules. There are new opportunities to socialize, new friends to add on Facebook, new pastimes to try and of course, new academic avenues to pursue. Life officially begins again and this time it’s awesome!

But the flip side of that coin is all those subtle and not-so-subtle elements of home life that are suddenly missing. The following is a list of the top five luxuries that students everywhere miss once they’ve made that first big move out of their parent’s house.

Mom / Dad’s Home Cooking

Most university students feel the first longings for home cooking by day three of their university experience. By day three, they have tried one meat dinner, one vegetarian and one dinner of cup-o-noodles, using their dorm room kettle. It’s at that point that they realize just how lucky they were to be fed a hot meal for eighteen years of their lives; A meal that was nutritious and actually tasted like food.

Laundry Service

The laundry longing will come on suddenly, the first week when three or more papers are due. That is the moment when students everywhere begin to ask the same question: “How long can I go before I need to wash my socks and underwear.” Most dorm rooms across the country take on a certain funk during the first round of papers.

Privacy

At home, privacy is always a battle. But teens have tools to fight back. They have doors to lock, bathrooms to hide in and basements to escape to. At university, there is no privacy; all space is shared. Students go to the bathroom with their peers, they sleep beside a roommate and they share a common room with twelve other students competing for a single remote. There is no privacy.

The Mattress

Dorm rooms are notorious for having thirty-year-old mattresses. Twin torture racks, that squeak with every nocturnal move, provide zero support and leave students pining for their teenage mattress Vancouver university dorms, especially UBC’s Totem Park, are seemingly built with the intention of housing the cast from Wizard of Oz. If you are over 5′9”, you may have problems. Most first-years won’t experience a decent night’s sleep until their first visit home. Fact.

Parents

Once they’ve been removed from a young person’s life, their presence is immediately missed. The physical reassurance of an all-knowing hug is irreplaceable.

Mattress Fads: ( An Epilogue: Mattress Stacks )

After publishing last week’s “Mattress Fads,” we remembered a specific fad from our youth that we failed to cover: the Bunk Bed. So, as an epilogue to our discussion on mattress fads, Simmons Mattress Gallery would like to take it back to the days of cereal and Saturday morning cartoons with a quick discussion of the mattress stack.

“I call top bunk!”

It’s a simple idea: two bed frames, four planks to elevate, one ladder and a guard rail for the top bunk. The mattress on the bottom can be a twin or a full bed, but it’s always recommended that the top be a twin (for weight). Materials can range from laminate wood, to maple, to iron or a lighter metal alloy. The high bed is elevated five or six feet off the ground, with a minimum two foot clearance from the ceiling. And that’s about it.

For parents, the bunk bed has one major benefit; it provides a space-saving tool that limits the number of bedrooms needed in a family home. Floor space is maximized and Mom can keep her office.

For kids, it provides a plethora of excuses for nighttime fun. It’s great for sleepovers, forts and stuffed animal storage.

If siblings use them, the sound of one child sleeping will often put the other child to sleep. Conversely, a crying child can keep the other up. It should be mentioned that most bunk bed manufactures suggest that any child using a top bunk be over six years of age.

The beds were used as early as the 18th century for sea voyages and are still found in navy vessels today. They are also used in penitentiaries, where inmates share a cell.

I wonder if prisoners call the top bunk?

Lowering the Blinds

Question for everyone: Do you close your bedroom blinds at night, or do you leave them open?

Your answer probably depends on a few things: What time you go to bed; If your bedroom points east for the morning sun; What the evening’s agenda is.

If you tend to head to bed before ten, especially in the summer, you probably close them. Just a guess. Better to block out the light.

If the morning sun has a direct path to your pillow, you probably close them as well.

And, if you plan to get a little frisky with your loved one, you probably shut them before the birthday suits come out.

But, if you love fresh air, natural light and the occasional voyeur, chances are they stay raised or open. At this time of year, the morning light works better than an alarm clock. And it’s definitely less grading…

It probably also depends on where you live. Urban dwellers, especially those folks living downtown tend to shut theirs. Folks in the country have less to worry about with fewer neighbours to peek in.

Another variable is your mattress. For those sleeping on a Simmons, a mattress Vancouver has fallen in love with, sleep comes instantly. It doesn’t matter if the sun is still up when you head to bed, if the morning rays are pouring in at 7am or if your neighbours are gathering in the backyard. With a Simmons Beautyrest, sleep is your only concern.

Open your mind. Invite a Simmons mattress into your home and let the light shine in.

Too Racy for Public Transit

The Telus World of Science is currently hosting an exhibit on the Science of Sexuality. The exhibit has been open since May, but a recent ad campaign has earned the show some free media coverage.

Two billboard photo ads have been removed from Translink bus stops around the city when they were deemed too sexy for public consumption. The ads are part of a trilogy that were used for promoting the exhibit on bus shelters and online. Science World will continue to use the images online and will use one of the less edgy ads for transit purposes.

The ads in question both use humour to suggest that sex has medical benefits.

In one ad, a suggested female patient with broken legs is having sex on what appears to be a hospital bed. The tagline: Orgasms can kill pain. The other ad features an image of a number of scrunched up tissues and a tissue box. The caption: Ejaculation fights colds. The suggestion is that frequent masturbation can help you stay healthy.

The ads were created, pro bono, by the Canadian ad agency Rethink. Rethink took on the project as an opportunity for free publicity. Looks like their gamble paid off.

As purveyors of mattresses, we know a thing or two about the questions around sex. You wouldn’t believe some of the doozies we’ve fielded. But questions are important and if not addressed, the public, young people especially, can come up with their own, seemingly, implausible answers.

Talking about sex, leads to responsible decision making. Even if the ads were pulled, they still created a dialogue and that’s a win for us all.

Mattress Fads ( Part 1: Asleep at Sea )

The mattress industry has seen many innovations over the years. The Simmons non-flip pocket coil revolutionized the industry, creating a mattress that never needed to be turned, had complete comfort coverage and provided motion separation between bed partners. This was an instant gamechanger.

But what about other innovations, or mattress fads. Where did they come from, why did they fail and where are they now? In this two-part series, Simmons Mattress Gallery would like to answer these questions for two passing mattress fads: the waterbed and the Murphy bed.

Part 1: The Sexiest Bed Ever

It seems that humans have been infatuated with the idea of creating a liquid sleeping surface for some time now. In Persia, over 3,000 years ago, beds were being made of goatskin sacks that were warmed in the sun.

In the 19th century, doctors started to experiment with waterbed technology to help treat patients with skin ailments. The water designs were intended to distribute the weight of the patient, applying an even amount of pressure to the sleeping surface.

But it wasn’t until a student at the University of San Francisco State, accidentally invented the modern day waterbed, that the idea suddenly became popular. Charles Hall came up with a design for his master’s thesis. His prototype, which he eventually took to market, was created with vinyl, the perfect material for a durable sac. Hall would go on to invent a heater, liner and patch kit for his beds. Unfortunately, his main bed design was never fully patented, due to the fact that the intellectual property surrounding the bed was already existent in science fiction, specifically in the novels of 1930s writer, Robert Heinlein.

And though Hall missed out on a patent deal, he did introduce his bed at the perfect point in history: the sexual revolution. With free love still in the air, Hall’s bed was a perfect addition to Hugh Hefner’s Playboy pop culture of the late 60s and early 1970s.

And for twenty or so years the waterbed shone. In 1986 it represented 20 percent of the mattress market. But, like the ideals of free love, eventually logic prevailed. STDs tainted the idea of multiple bed partners and flooded apartments eventually drowned the waterbed market. Research also emerged that waterbeds were extremely dangerous for infants who slept with their parents.

The beds are still being made, but the consumer has made a definitive move away from the watery technology. Coils still trump the goatskin sac.

Random Fact: Hugh Hefner once owned a waterbed that was covered in Tasmanian possum fur

Forbidden Tours

Every city has its dirty secrets, but did you know that Vancouver was full of them. From opium dens to, bawdy houses, to police corruption, Vancouver’s streets tell a tale of city with a tarnished halo.

Want to know the whole story, learn some history about your hometown and have a fun time out on the town? Take a walking tour of the city and prepare yourself for a delicious bite of the seedy underbelly of Vancouver.

Sins of the City: Vice, Dice and Opium Pipes

Sins of the City is put on by the Vancouver Police Museum. It is a two-hour walking tour of Chinatown and Gastown. From brothels, to gambling houses, to opium dens, the tour promises to take you to a number of former illegal establishments throughout downtown. Canoe.ca has rated this walking tour as one of the top ten in the world. As a bonus, the $20 tour ticket includes free admission to the police museum. Registration is done by phone: 604-665-3346. Because of the content, guests need to be at least 18 years of age.

Forbidden Vancouver

Forbidden Vancouver is more of a theatrical performance, with a costumed storyteller focusing on specific locations. Their company offers four unique downtown walking tours: Prohibition City, Lost Souls of Gastown, The Granville Street Reveal and Secrets of the Penthouse. These tours are a mix of history, theatre and iconic buildings. Founded in 2012 by Will Woods, the lead guide, Forbidden Vancouver currently holds a 5 out of 5 on Trip Advisor. Check their website for a current schedule of tours.

Recharge

It’s 2:38, mid-way through the afternoon, when your phone battery dies. It didn’t even last till the end of your shift. Now how will you Whatsapp your friend in New York, follow Amanda Bynes latest brush with the law and Vine your coworkers attempt at a Sasso lemon face. You might actually get some work done this afternoon…

But that’s not the point! The real issue is battery life! If you can’t count on your phone charge lasting till dinner, what can you count on? The answer is your mattress.

Simmons Mattress has developed a new mattress specifically designed for ‘recharging’ our tired bodies. Your phone might pack it in after your marathon session of Candy Crush, but your body and mind will hold their charge until pillow time.

The new mattress line uses a combination of patented Beautyrest pocket coils and AirCool and GelTouch foams to create the most recharging sleep ever. The coils provide support, the gel touch adds an extra layer of comfort and the AirCool design provides cooling technology guaranteed to keep your mattress at an ideal temperature for sleep.

The result: full bars from sunup to sunset.

Come in and test-sleep a Recharge mattress at our Broadway location. We can charge your iPhone at the same time. Free of ‘charge.’

The Personal Shopping Experience

There’s a new trend fast sweeping the nation and it’s going to the dearth of the mattress industry as we know it. Showcasing is quickly catching on in big box stores, from Future Shop to Best Buy, and the only way to combat it, as a retailer, is to change the shopping experience for you, our loyal customer.

Essentially, showcasing is when consumers visit stores where products are on display, you know, showrooms. They find the items (beds) they like and then use their Smartphones to compare prices with other models elsewhere on the Internets. It leaves Vancouver mattress retailers like Simmons Mattress Gallery holding the bag, and the lease for a 10,000 sq ft show space. It’s not a sustainable model.

Our answer is what we like to call the Personal Shopping Experience. Simply go to our website and pick out a few beds you would like to try. Alternatively, call ahead and tell us your personal preferences, be it a king sized, queen, hard or soft. Then, we will arrange a few beds for you in advance. When your mattress session is ready, we’ll treat you to fresh coffee, tea, hands on advice and have your mattresses all ready to try. It’s the little, personal differences that are going to change the face of the mattress industry, and we plan to lead the way to a better, more enjoyable shopping experience.

Mattress Vancouver

Someone really needs to build a city out of mattresses. They could dub the pillowy kingdom: “Mattress Vancouver.”

Miniature cities have been created before. If you go to Legoland in Denmark, they have built most of the major European cities out of Lego blocks.

Remember the Dairy Queen commercials where they used to take you to a land of chocolate and ice cream, with a caramel river flowing through whip cream mountains. Mmm. I think they should do the same thing with Mattress Vancouver, a city made of mattresses, comfortable, welcoming, warm.

I’m actually surprised that a mattress company hasn’t made an ad that has a city made of mattresses. I could see Mattress Vancouver being the first of its kind in that sense.

There have been cities made of newsprint, cities made of cheese, cities made of money – but there has never been a city made out of mattresses.

What do you think? Should Simmons Mattress Gallery create the first Mattress Vancouver?

Final Days Of The Beautyrest Sale

We are in the final days of the Simmons Mattress Gallery Beautyrest Sales Event. This could be your last chance to get a Simmons Beautyrest for up to 60% off.

So come on down to 101 Schoolhouse Street in Coquitlam or if you need a quality mattress Vancouver address is 1001 West Broadway (and Oak).

We have Queen Sets from an incredible value of $699. Visco and Wool Queen Sets are only $799 and you can enjoy the World Class Queen Set for only $899.

These prices are only lasting for a few more days. So don’t delay.

Families Upgrading to Kings

People are not having as many children as they used to. And the family dynamic is changing. The traditional 2 ½ kids and a white picket fence has been replaced with common law relationships, stay-at-home dads, same-sex marriages and single parents. According to the most recent government stats, the Emmy-winning TV show Modern Family is spot on. As families shrink in size, the need for beds changes.

For the first time, there are now more one-person households than couple households with children. Instead of buying the extra bed for the extra child you never had, consider investing that same amount in yourself. A king-sized bed will mean a better sleep and a more rested day.

With families in Canada shrinking, a moving more and more into urban areas, there is a new demand for space-efficiency. To make your bedroom bigger, ask us about drawer bases below your mattress.

Right now, for those needing a mattress Vancouver has just the store. Simmons Mattress Gallery is in the final weeks of its Beautyrest Sale. It’s your chance to snag a king-sized mattress for up to 60% off.

Complimenting Capitalism

As a consumer in a capitalistic society, you have choices for what you buy and where you buy it. There is no one warehouse for shampoo or light fixtures and fortunately we all don’t have to buy the same ugly trainers. We are free to spend our money on any product we deem economically superior.

The consumer’s responsibility is product comparison. Finding the lowest price and best terms is a demanding second job. Fortunately, some companies are making it easier for the consumer. Their prices and the quality of their products places their item or service on a level far above their competition.

Simmons Mattress Gallery is one of these companies.

SMG is currently offering up to 60% off on beds in their warehouse. That is a massive markdown that can’t be beat.

They are also offering free delivery. Customers don’t have to lift a hair.

SMG will also remove and recycle your old mattress, an environmental benefit that will help you sleep even more soundly at night.

Save money, buy a quality product and have it delivered. Simmons Mattress Gallery has it all covered.

Vancouver Pest Control

The recent discovery of bed bugs in a Vancouver library book has embarrassed the city’s lending service and reopened the inquiry into how prolific the bed bug problem is in our city.

The bugs were found in a book borrowed from the Mount Pleasant Library.

Since the incident, the library has done a thorough search of their stacks. Their work has turned up no evidence of further infestation. It may have only been the one book, stored near an infected mattress or couch that acted as a temporary home for the critters – unlucky for the library.

The fact that the bugs were found in an item other than furniture or clothing illustrates how prolific the problem is in our city. Bed bugs are everywhere, but those infected are keeping their mouths zipped.

Unlike a public library, homeowners can silently try to deal with bed bug issues without the prying eye of the public. Victims call a pest control service, they move to a hotel for a few days or go on a ‘vacation’, they buy all new mattresses and when they get back, the Taylors will ‘still’ be sending little Jenny over for play dates. A convenient solution with little-to-no public humiliation.

Until there is a strategy to wipeout the bugs for good, private pest control will be the public’s best option.

Bug Problems

Keeping Up With Christmas

We have just over a month to go till Christmas. Are you ready?

The Starbucks cups were out on the 1st, St. Paul’s Lights of Hope turns on next Thursday and the Christmas Train starts up on December 2nd, Each unique event reminds us of how close we are coming to the family holiday.

And there’s so much to do…

The cleaning is what stresses us out. Vacuuming, scrubbing, dusting, polishing – it all must be done before the family arrives.

Then there are the lights to be hung, the tree to buy and the sweets to be baked.

Finding time to rest over the holidays can be a chore in itself. To improve your horizontal hours, purchase a Simmons Beautyrest mattress from Vancouver’s mattress store. It will be a gift that you can enjoy every day of the year. You can’t say that about the Rudolph-themed slippers you received from Uncle Rob.

So treat yourself to a new bed and counteract the Christmas sleep withdrawal.

Asleep At The Switch

“Let’s Get Crafty”

Christmas crafts sales are a one-stop shopping centre for all those people on your list that need something simple but festive. From ornaments, to wreathes, to salt and sweet treats, you’ll find everything under the broad blanket of Christmas crafts.

This weekend hosts a number of Christmas craft fairs around the city. Simmons Mattress Gallery suggests the following sales:

Friday, November 25th

-9th Annual Chilliwack Christmas Craft Crawl

Various times and locations in Chilliwack

-North Delta Potter’s Guild Christmas Pottery Sale

Artspace Studio (11425 84th Avenue)

-Richmond Potter’s Club Christmas Sale

Richmond Cultural Centre (7700 Minoru Place)

Saturday, November 26th

-Dunbar Community Centre’s Annual Craft Fair

10am – 5pm (4747 Dunbar Street)

-Renfrew Community Centre’s Craft Fair

10am – 3pm (Eastt 22nd and Renfrew)

-Strathcona Community Centre’s Winter Craft Fair

601 Keefer Street, Vancouver

-Urban Artists’ Craft Fair

10am – 5pm Roundhouse Community Centre

-Woodside Gallery Christmas Arts and Craft Show

10am – 5pm (2226 Lougheed Highway)

Homemade Christmas Gifts

Wish Upon A Star

Since 1998, St. Paul’s Hospital in downtown Vancouver has been creating a public light display to raise funds for various projects and causes connected with the hospital.

This year, the ‘Lights of Hope’ display intends to raise $1.9 million in corporate and private donations. The St. Paul’s Hospital Foundation has already raised a total of $16 million since the conception of the light show.

The set-up for the lights began on November 5th, when a 100 volunteers helped erect the carefully planned display. It is estimated that the lights would span 10 kms, if attached as a single line. That would be quite the sight.

If you would like to donate, visit the charity’s website: http://www.helpstpauls.com The site suggest many creative ways to give, from security stock, to a mention in the will, to a monthly donation. Whatever you can afford to give, they’ll use.

The projects that the hospital wishes to fund are: the purchase of a new CT scanner, two 3D-capable echocardiography machines, bronchoscopy equipment, for the detection of lung disease and the completion of the Diagnostic Treatment Unit.

The official opening of this year’s Lights of Hope display will be on Thursday, November 24th.

Light Up the Stars Tonight

The Night Before…

It’s the night before your company presentation and all you want is a few hours of undisturbed sleep.

You have been working tirelessly for three months in preparation. There have been late nights in the office, when the only people in the building have been you, the security guard and the cleaning staff. There have been hour-long Skype sessions with the tech department in Toronto and countless meetings with your team in Vancouver.

You saw your idea evolve from a boardroom discussion to a tangible product. Over thirty employees put their time and resources into its development. Now it is time to sell it to the company brass.

No pressure.

Lying on your bed, staring at the ceiling, you run through the presentation in your head. You have done all you can.

The only thing left to do is receive the seven hours of sleep you need to stay alert and focused.

You roll over on to another lump and openly curse your twelve-year-old mattress.

Give Your Mind a Rest

Innovation starts and ends with the sleep you receive. Purchase a Beautyrest mattress at one of the two Simmons Mattress Galleries in the Lower Mainland. Your productivity is resting on it.

Vancouver Asian Film Festival

When watching a film, our gaze is directed at a subject that has been chosen for us. We give the director free reign to control our sight line. This exchange encourages new experiences, some of which are cultural.

This week, the Vancouver Asian Film Festival hopes to direct our eyes towards the North American Asian experience.

In their 15th year of operation, the VAFF is intent on providing a cultural bridge between Asian and non-Asian communities. The Festival will run from November 3rd to November 6th, with all shows screening at Cineplex Odeon International Village, near Roger’s Arena.

The films range in subjects from cross-cultural love for the Vancouver Canucks, to a historical documentary on the migration of asian settlers to North America.

Also included in this year’s festival, as a part of Vancouver’s 125th celebration, is an encore presentation of “Love Letters,” the photo and video campaign shown last June. Love Letters was an open call for Vancouver citizens to submit digital records of images and video that conveyed their love for our fair city. VAFF will show Joanna Wong’s entry on the festival’s opening night.

Tickets for all the shows may be purchased online at the Festival site or the day of at the Festival box office. Passes are also available for the true film buffs.

Comedy West

An uninterrupted sleep can dramatically increase your daily health. There – we said it! But the next best thing is laughter.

We’re not 100% sure of the science, but we do know a good laugh is a great way to relieve anxiety. Forget the scented candles and bubble bath, grab a friend and find a local comedy club or check the events calendar for local comics coming to town. Then take a night-off from work/kids/bridge and laugh your way back to health.

This month, Paul F. Tompkins will be visiting the city and performing at the Rio Theatre, only a few km’s from our Broadway location. Tompkins’ humour is a little quirky, but if you have ever listened to his podcast or his appearances on Comedy Bang Bang, you wouldn’t miss this night for your Grandmother’s funeral. Tompkins will be taking to the stage on November 30th. For a little taste of his style, listen to the audio clip below:

http://audioboo.fm/boos/510900-new-dads-paul-f-tompkins

Never been to the Rio Theater? You are in for a treat. Be forewarned, this is an adults only show and as a result, beer will be served. And yes, you may take your cans of PBR into the Theatre.

Another great venue for traveling comedians, as opposed to the community kind, is the River Rock Theatre. Last year, legendary comics Chris Rock and Jerry Seinfeld performed at the Rock.

If a smaller, more casual setting is more to your taste, check out the Comedy Mix in the Century Plaza Hotel downtown.

Out in the burbs? Try LaffLines in New Westminster. Tracy MacDonold, a fine Canadian comic, will be performing on November 4th and 5th.

Get out there and get your laugh on!

Paul F. Tompkins

Ode to a Mattress

In the spirit of the Writers and Readers Festival, here is a short ode on a subject dear to the heart of Simmons Mattress Gallery:

Ode to a mattress

Where would we be, without our coiled invention,

Damp on a straw mat, constricted with tension?

Some might give credit, to the mighty steam engine,

But the steam locomotive, is a hot-aired distraction.

Some might say soap, brought us new sanitation,

But it also helped Tyler, fund the club we won’t mention.

Some might praise books, and the print of a German,

But one needs a bed, to relax and read fiction.

No, praise the mattress, don’t fall for deception,

You deserve the best, a Simmons sensation.

Our rhyme scheme might stray, but our love for the mattress is unwavering. Come visit one of our two locations in the Lower Mainland to sample the large selection of Simmons mattresses on hand.

Locating Our Biological Clock

How often do you wake up minutes before your alarm goes off?

With the right sleep conditions, our bodies naturally wake up at a similar hour each day. If you are sleeping on a Simmons Beautyrest, this event is probably a common occurrence.

Until recently, scientists had trouble determining the cause of this natural phenomenon. The scientific community was roughly aware of the mechanism that prepared us for sleep, but little was known about the way we wake-up.

Now researchers at the Salt Lake Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla California have located the gene that triggers our body to wake-up at a given time.

Researcher, Satchidananda Panda, claims, “the body is essentially a collection of clocks.” These clocks subconsciously trigger our brain and other organs to carry out involuntary actions. Our body’s natural drop in temperature before we fall asleep is one example.

With the ‘wake-up’ gene located, sleep scientists can now expand their study of sleep disorders. There is also hope that the discovery can aid research into chronic illness and aging.

Dressing ‘Up’ for Bed

Shah Rukh Khan is one of the biggest movie stars on the planet. Appearing in over 70 Hindi films, Khan is considered by many to be the King of Bollywood.

With his new science fiction film, “Ra.One,” premiering on October 26th, the world media is obsessed with everything Kahn.

This week, an article in “Harper’s Bazaar” published some interesting facts about Kahn’s sleeping rituals.

Kahn was asked by Mala Sekhri to describe his bed attire. The middle-aged star, often referred to by his acronym SRK, revealed that he prefers to ‘dress up for bed.’

“I like to wear clean, really nice pair of clothes, so like my Dolce and Gabbana shorts, I will sometime . . . wear my Lululemon track pants and I’ll wear a nice, crisp white T-shirt.”

Kahn also went on to comment that he enjoys putting cologne on before crawling beneath the covers.

Cologne? Dress shirts? DG boxers? The ‘King’ knows how to push the boundaries of extravagant living. And a little shout-out to a local company.

We only hope his mattress is on par with his sweet-smelling wardrobe.

SRK

Meadow Maze

Summer is winding to a close and fall is starting to show on the leaves. This is great news for corn lovers in B.C. as the fields are filled with this year’s crop. It’s also the time of year when farmers with an entrepreneurial artistic side, can turn their land from simple fields of corn into complex harvest labyrinths.

One of the largest mazes in the Pacific Northwest is located in Pitt Meadows. Appropriately titled the ‘Meadow Maze,’ this year’s design boasts 6.3 kms of pathways. The theme is the Vancouver Zoo. Previous themes include: the PNE, the Golden Ears Bridge and ‘eat local.’

The corn maze design begins on a computer, where a designer creates an image and then maps out the pathways. The maze is then cut when the corn is a foot high using a tractor with GPS compatibility. Before the cut, there are nearly 1 million plants in the field.

Visitors to the maze are encouraged to bring water and a hat. The Pitt Meadows location occasionally closes when the temperature is too high. The average walker takes about 1 1/2 hours to complete the maze. The fastest time for this years design is 35 minutes.

The Meadow Maze also boasts a full concession and market area, plus a petting zoo and hay rides.

Pitt Meadows Maze

*From Experience: Do not watch “Children of the Corn” before a trip to the Pitt Meadows maze.

‘Big Ride’

Amateur and pro cycling enthusiasts around the Lower Mainland have been training, tuning and timing for months in preparation for this weekend’s Gran Fondo ride from Vancouver to Whistler. The ride is 120 km, along one of the most beautiful highways on the planet. Take part or encourage a friend or family member as they climb towards Whistler Village.

This is the second year of the mass cycling event in Canada, a phenomenon that was born in Europe and given the Italian name of Gran Fondo – roughly translated as ‘Big Ride.’ The event is not a race, but awards are given to the top finishers. It features riders from a variety of skill levels and backgrounds. This year’s amateur category is sold out, but the pro category still has room for last minute entries.

The race will start at Thurlow and West Georgia at 7:00 am, with amateur riders staggered back to Seymour Street. The race will finish in Whistler Village, with the finish line closing at 4:00 pm. There will also be a celebration event afterwards, featuring the music of 54-40.

Canadian Gran Fondo

TaiwanFest

Vancouver is blessed to have so many diverse ethnicities infused into its kaleidoscope culture. Celebrating specific regions of origin helps Vancouverites appreciate the richness of our multicultural society.

This weekend, the city is proud to host Taiwanfest. With a variety of events planned around the city, Taiwanfest hopes to offer a sampling of the entertainment, food and art from the island of Taiwan and Mainland China.

Free musical performances will be held all weekend around the Vancouver Art Gallery. One of the anticipated highlights of the Labour Day weekend will be the Musou Girls. Starting at 8pm on Saturday, the Musou girls will play a mix of modern and traditional Chinese instruments. The music is composed by the founder of the group, Mr. Xue Xuan Liu.

For a deeper look into the Taiwanese culture, checkout the four documentaries that will be showing around town. Simmons Mattress Gallery suggests “Faces of Taiwan.” This film is made up of five mini docs that focus on overcoming adversity.

On the edible menu will be Vancouver’s first street banquet. This event is being sponsored by the city as part of Vancouver’s 125th celebrations.

Taiwanese ceramics will be on display at the Roundhouse theatre from September 3rd to the 10th.

Enjoy the festivities!

For a more detailed schedule of events click here.

Art is Everywhere

Vancouver is a haven for public art. From “The Birds” at the Olympic Plaza in the Athletes Village complex, to the “A-maze-ing Laughter” men at English Bay, to the “Equestrian Monument” at the Yaletown Roundhouse Skytrain Station, art surrounds us.

Now BC Hydro is adding its own touch to the public art scene in our city. Hydro boxes are now being decorated with vegetation scenes, children’s art work and graphic design pieces. ‘Function’ is giving ‘design’ an opportunity to paint on its metal canvas.

Instead of random tags and garish graffiti, the boxes now display images that are more reflective of the community they are located in.

Often commissioned, public art is a way for large corporations and city planners to probe the imagination of commuters, homeowners and travelers. The installations encourage an interaction between the observer and the artist. They make us value our streets.

So lift your head from your smart phone browsing and take in the installations that pepper our city streets. They may inspire a response that could change your day.

Movies in the Park

The fireworks have come and gone, but there are still a number of free public events being offered around the city. The most popular are the Fresh Air Cinema screenings being shown around the Lower Mainland.

“Jaws” aired on Tuesday in Stanley park. Word has it there was more laughs then screams. Still a classic that everyone enjoys. The defining line: “We’re going to need a bigger boat.”

This Tuesday the classic urban Cinderella story comes to Stanley park with the screening of “Pretty Women.” We’ve never really been big Julia Roberts fans, but when Richard Gere snaps that jewelry box shut and Julia flashes those pearly whites, just for a moment we can see how she rose to fame. What a smile!

"Snap!"

The film we are dying to see airs on August 30th. “Stand By Me,” the quintessential end of summer/innocence film will closeout the summer series at Stanley Park. From “Chopper sick balls,” to the ‘barfarama,’ to the rail-tie sing-a-longs, “Stand By Me” has it all; even a few tears. Bring the family or a date and relive your youth in the open air of Stanley Park.

Sleep = Health Insurance

Acute illness is usually connected with the winter months, when our bodies react to the change in temperature. The common cold usually strikes us somewhere between the months of October and early December, when our immune system is weakened due to the seasonal climate change.

But the summer months can be just as deadly on our immune system. During summer, we often treat our bodies with less care. We indulge in greasy food, we neglect the gym and we also sleep less. Reducing our sleeping hours is the major cause of summer immune deficiency.

The temptation to sleep less is high in July and August because of our activity loaded days and nights. A fireworks show, two barbecues, a staff party and a wedding can run a hefty sleep debt. It is important to make time, even when the weather is nice, for a few early nights.

A consistent eight hours of sleep can keep our bodies running at maximum capacity. This may mean going home a little early from the party or declining the odd invitation for dinner, but it could also mean not getting sick.

Do your body a favour and make time for sleep this summer.

Summer Sickness? Get More Sleep!

Celebration of Light

This Saturday, the sky will once again be lit by exploding pyrotechnics, as the Celebration of Light returns to English Bay. This will be the twenty-first year Vancouver will host the event. It has become one of the must-see spectacles of the summer and major draw for tourist booking their Vancouver holiday.

The organizers of this year’s event are hoping to make a little more revenue by selling grandstand, V.I.P. seating at English Bay. The tickets are $45. The early bird seats have already sold, but Tickets Tonight is still selling.

Other changes include a shorter program. Instead of the standard four nights of explosions, this year’s festival will have only three; July 30, August 3rd and August 6th. Canada will perform on the final night.

A panel of judges chosen from the events corporate sponsors will evaluate the competing countries.

For more information on the Celebration of Light, check out their website. There is a really interesting section on the history of fireworks. There is also a full explanation of how the barge is loaded and prepped for each night of action. Apparently it takes a crew of 16 people, three days to prepare the show. There may be 2,000 to 4,500 bombs (that’s what they call them) used in one night’s performance. That’s a lot of gunpowder.

And just remember, if you are coming down to watch the fireworks downtown or at any of the beaches around English Bay, leave the alcohol at home. This is a family event and we want to keep it going for years to come. Enjoy Vancouver.

The Lights of Summer

Repeat Customers

Mattresses are one of those things you only need to shop for every five or six years. They are dependable to a point and then it is in your best interest to replace them. When your current mattress reaches that mark, look to Simmons Mattress Gallery to supply you with a new bed.

Simmons has been making beds for the last 130 years. Our beds are leading the industry in mattress innovation; they are also leading to repeat customers.

A Simmons owner knows that their new bed will offer them an undisturbed sleep every night of the week. They have experienced the comfort of a well-crafted product and their choice to buy another Simmons is an easy one.

An easier choice is where to buy their Simmons. With seven consecutive years of being named ‘Best Mattress Store‘ by the Consumers’ Choice Awards, Simmons Mattress Gallery is the number one Vancouver mattress store.

The mattress professionals at Simmons Mattress Gallery can help recommend the perfect bed for your lifestyle. Explain your sleeping preferences, test-lie a few beds and walk away with your favourite.

We won’t see you for a few years, but we will be here when it’s time for another new one.

The Best Place On Earth

British Columbia issued license plates for the Olympic year with the slogan, “Best Place on Earth.” Many Easterners saw this as another west coast hyperbole that proved the level of our conceitedness.

But for those of us who call BC home, the phrase holds more truth than the sharp-tongued retorts of the critics.

BC is one of the most diverse provinces in the country. It has the mildest winter weather and the least humid summers. It is is home to the country’s most beautiful city, Vancouver, and It is also the proud parent of the Vancouver Canucks, the only Canadian team to get past the opening round of the 2011 NHL playoffs.

Our province has some of the lushest parks in the country, the most epic skiing conditions and one of the only stretches of shoreline worth surfing in Canada.

We showed the world we could host a party in 1986 and we did it again in 2010.  The BC acronym is synonymous with a higher level of living that folks from all over the world recognize.

Part of that living experience is the proximity to the most elite mattress store in the country, Simmons Mattress Gallery. The BC mattress store, offers the top Simmons Beautyrest beds at prices that are worth the drive from St. Johns.

If you’ve never slept on a Simmons, you’ve never experienced the west coast. Come see why this truly is the best place on earth. We’ll be waiting with a mattress, two free pillows and some of the BC’s finest (mattress professionals).

Lead On Kesler

Support comes from beneath. It stabilizes the main structure. It is the foundation on which outstanding achievements are made possible.

For the Vancouver Canucks, that support is the tireless playoff performance of Ryan Kesler. Bloodied and bruised, number seventeen is currently leading the NHL in playoff points, but most nights it is his work away from the net that is earning him respect around the league.

Killing penalties, winning faceoff’s and banging the boards, Kesler is giving it all this post-season. He is supporting a team whose top players (Daniel and Henrik) have mysteriously disappeared. He has stitches across his lip from an errant puck in Game Five; when asked if he wanted anesthesia for the wound, he refused it, saying it would only slow him down.

His fearless play and defensive stamina earned him over twenty-one minutes of ice time in Game Six against the Nashville Predators. Setting up both goals, Kesler earned the praises of Predator Coach Barry Trotz: “As I said when I was going by him, if he doesn’t play that way we’re probably going to Game 7 and we might win the series, but he played to a level that few people can reach in a series.”

Kesler, in a post-game interview with Scott Oake of the CBC, claimed that Trotz’s comments were humbling.

Now the assistant captain is carrying the Canucks into the Western Conference Finals, a feat managed only three times by the franchise.

Without him, the Canucks might be counting the clubs in their golf bag. With him they are the most powerful team in the NHL, destined to play for a chance at the Stanley Cup.

Lead on Kesler. You have a whole city on your shoulders.

Like You Needed Anymore…

Why is it important to get a full night’s rest each and every night?

Here are five firm reasons to secure at least seven hours a night.

  1. Falling asleep at work could cost you your job. If your boss happens to catch you taking a power nap, you better have your desk cleaned out by the end of the day. Drool is also terrible for keyboards.
  2. Falling asleep at the wheel could cost you your life. 17% of fatal car accidents involve a sleepy driver. Turning up the radio or opening the window won’t help. If you are consistently experiencing drowsy conditions on your daily commute, it’s time to put aside more hours for sleep.
  3. Your health. Simmons Mattress Gallery has written numerous articles on the negative health effects of limited rest. From diabetes, to heart failure, to lower life expectancy, there is a long list of sleep related health problems that occur with individuals who neglect their downtime.
  4. Your mood sours dramatically when you haven’t gotten enough shut-eye. People who are sleep deprived often are quick to lose their temper and are less able to deal with pressure situations. Their mood often sours their relationships at work and at home.
  5. Our brains need a break. Even if your other organs could handle continuous nights of less than three hours of sleep, our brains would eventually slow down to a crawl. Each night when we doze off, our brain reverts to an energy-saving mode. Different areas are called upon to fuel our subconscious, but the area we count on for our most intense processing is given a break. Run anything for 21 hours a day and it will eventually self-destruct.

"Wake up!!!!"

“Good Morning, Good Morning!”

Good morning! Two words that sneak from our lips, but often mean far too little.

What is a ‘good morning’? Is it a greeting, a statement of fact or a question?

Well if the Viagra commercials are to be believed, it is a state of being; a post-performance glow. It has gentlemen in suits leaping over hedges, bounding down sidewalks and freely swinging their briefcases.

According to The Beatles it is a mundane rundown of your average day, mixed with a flirty skirt and a barnyard serenade.

Here at Simmons Mattress Gallery, we believe a ‘good morning’ is the product of a peaceful night’s sleep on our superior, non-flip pocket coil mattress. Nothing prepares your mind, body and soul for taking on the new day than an undisturbed rest. And quite simply, that is what a Simmons mattress provides. Our Beautyrest line will provide more spring than any blue pill will.

Try a Simmons today and you will never look back. You will greet your staff with a boastful ‘How was your sleep last night? Mine was amazing!’ That is how to start the day. Leave the chickens and the pill popping to the ill informed.

"Now look to your right..."

The Perfect Anniversary Gift

It’s your parent’s anniversary. Thirty-five years of marriage and they are still sleeping on that old mattress they bought just after you were born.

Surprise them with an anniversary gift they will cherish through their golden years. Buy them a Beautyrest mattress from Simmons Mattress Gallery, Vancouver’s mattress store.

They deserve it. They’ve been through a lot, but they stuck together and always supported you. Now is your chance to repay them.

You will look like the golden child. Those memories of when you wrote-off the family car will be magically erased. In its place will blossom years of ‘thank you’s’.

You can purchase their new mattress at our Broadway location in Vancouver or at our Schoolhouse store in Coquitlam.

Not sure what mattress to choose. Make an event out of the gift. Tell them you need their help picking out a new hardwood floor. Drive them to either of our locations and have them spend an afternoon trying out our beds.

We guarantee they will leave with a smile and a spring in their step.

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