Ladies Learning Code – Edmonton

This Saturday I’ll be mentoring at a Ladies Learning Code event.

The attendees will be learning HTML/CSS and the event has sold out! Sorry if you were wanting to attend and missed out, but I understand there will be future events.

Check out the other cool people presenting/mentoring the event!

Woof! This blog sure is dusty. I blame the two-part project I’ve been involved in since last September that doesn’t wrap up until the end of this September. I’m far more active on my twitter account, @tammalee, and my tumblr,

If you’re looking for fun web tech stuff to play with check out knockout.js! What a fun framework to use, especially for building forms!

Ladies Learning Code – Edmonton

Pecha Kucha

I attended my first Pecha Kucha last night.

The phrase ‘Pecha Kucha’ is one of those delightful Japanese phrases that are onomatopoeia; in this case pechakucha is the sound for ‘chit-chat’. For those unfamiliar, the concept is: a presenter get twenty slides, twenty seconds per slide, to present an idea to the audience. It was a surprisingly effective way to get your point across, when the idea was simple and there was a clear call to action or purpose.

I walked away with these tips for anyone looking to present at Pecha Kucha:
Start your presentation off clearly stating what the point of your presentation is
Don’t try to cram in too many words per slide (20 second interval)
Dead air as you wait for your slide show to catch up to your speech is awkward for everybody involved; say something! Anything!
If you can work humour in, do it! The audience loves to laugh
Stay focused on your point; Repeat your point now and then
End with your point or a call to action
Pecha Kucha isn’t your typical presentation. There is an art to paring your thoughts down to a simple concept that can be presented in increments of twenty seconds with a matching image.

It was an enjoyable way to spend the evening and I may have to attempt a presentation at Pecha Kucha sometime in the future; after I practice.

Pecha Kucha

Devonian Botanic Garden – High Tea

A few weeks ago my BFF (best friend forever) invited me to take high tea with her and her mother at the Devonian Botanic Garden. A few weeks ago, it seemed like a good idea.

Yesterday I woke up to pouring rain. This wasn’t a light smattering that seemed likely to taper off as the sun rose higher in the sky. No, this rain seemed biblical.

Good thing I own a long, yellow slicker.

Crazy face

We did not, in fact, cancel for my BFF is an adventurous soul and I am the sort not to waste a $34 ticket. We tromped about in the rain, the pouring rain, in our rain gear for 2 1/2 hours before high tea and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves!

There’s this tipping point where discomfort becomes hilarity and we reached it almost immediately. If it had been a light sprinkling of rain, we might have grumbled at having to lug rain gear around just in case it started to pour. With a downpour you’re happy you brought the gear, you don’t mind if the hem of your trousers is soaked because the rest of you is dry, and it’s just SO SILLY to be looking at flowers in the rain that you can’t help but smile and enjoy yourself.

You also appreciate hot tea and biscuits a lot more after you’ve been in the rain for 2+ hours.

Tables, for High Tea, were assigned by name and our table was called the Red-tail Hawks table. I was pleased to note we had the most bad-ass table in the canvas-walled space. I was even a bit smug about it. I may have made hawk noises and pretended to swoop down on my tea cup. I’m not sure I’m ready for tea at the Rutherford House.

A three-tiered serving device was brought to our table laden with delicious tid-bits.

High tea

There were exactly enough of each tid-bit that each person in our party got one of everything to try. Let me use the powers of my foody-brain to remember what was on each tier:

  • Bottom Tier:
    • egg salad sandwich, rolled like a jelly roll and sliced, with a small bit of cornichon (gherkin) pickle in the center
    • chicken salad with dried cranberries in a miniature croissant
    • spinach and what appeared to be an herbed, Boursin cheese on multi-grain raisin bread
    • cucumber sprout sandwiches… and I failed to note if the crusts were cut off or not
  • Middle Tier (assume everything mentioned is miniature):
    • red velvet cupcake
    • lemon tart with whipped cream, not meringue
    • some form of not-too-sweet brittle
    • chocolate tart shells filled with custard and topped with three blueberries
    • cream puff filled with mocha-cream and drizzled with chocolate
  • Top Tier:
    • chocolate dipped strawberries
    • a skewer with a cantaloupe melon ball and a lychee (?) rolled in toasted coconut
    • beautifully moist scones served with bright and tasty raspberry butter and delicate whipped cream (I had thought clotted cream, but after thinking about it, I think it was just whipped)

Stuffed, exhausted, and in dire need of a nap, we availed ourselves of the free shuttle service back to the entrance of the garden. As we waddled to our car, I couldn’t help but reflect that it had been a perfect day, and that the pouring rain had been a big factor in it.

More of my photos including ones from the butterfly house and the Japanese garden.

Devonian Botanic Garden – High Tea

The Black Keyes

Last night I saw The Black Keyes in concert and the evening can be summed up with this photo:

The Black Keyes - Audience blast of light


I went in only knowing a couple of their songs (I won tickets to see them) but I enjoyed every song they played! Towards the end the other people in the box with me were getting impatient for ‘Lonely Boy’ and they finally obliged by playing it as their final song.

The audience went WILD! Everyone was on their feet dancing and cheering and singing along. This feeling of collective joy is why I like going to live events!

The Black Keyes