Web Design – Vancouver and BC Mainland

sunset tofino

Sun Setting Over The Pacific Near Tofino, BC

Many of my readers (all ten of you) know that I own a web development business that also does considerable work in the SEO (Organic and Local Search) segments. We’ve been helping out quite a few businesses here in Ontario and elsewhere, and have seen some really good results. We like to take a holistic approach to SEO – including ensuring websites have solid “on-site” search engine optimization.

But did you know that we also offer services throughout North America? We do! In fact, we even have clients in the United Kingdom – doing business across the miles is really not all that difficult, although sometimes you have to be cognizant of time differences. For us, that can mean a span of 8 hours at any given time, with the UK being 5 hours ahead, and the west coast of Canada 3 hours behind. But with many many years working shift work prior to starting the business, and now years of adjusting to clients’ time zones, we’ve managed quite well.

One of the areas of Canada that we’ve had some very happy clients is in the Vancouver region of British Columbia. We’ve helped a number of different businesses including fly fishing guides, a harbour boat cruise line, and a consulting firm that supports individuals that want to be become or already are virtual assistants. Our services have included web development, maintenance, SEO, and support for WordPress security.

I’ve really enjoyed Vancouver every time that I have visited. I’ve visited the city on both business and pleasure trips, have enjoyed the downtown area of Vancouver as well as fly fishing out in the Mission area. In addition, I’ve been privileged enough to have visited Vancouver Island and driven to Tofino. If you ever get a chance, that is a drive you should put on your “bucket list.”

As a growing business, The Ian Scott Group has been focusing recently on helping and increasing the number of local clients, so much of our website has content aimed at that market. But recently, in conversations with a couple of our Vancouver area clients, there was much encouragement to me that I should seriously consider increasing our business in the Vancouver area. It was very encouraging to hear that my business would have plenty of support with getting new clients in and around that beautiful city, so we’re starting to build resources and information for businesses, both new and existing, out that way.

So to begin with, I’ve had my staff create a new page on our business website which will be a “gateway” page for businesses in Vancouver looking for high quality web development and marketing services. It’s just a beginning – (more here) – but we’ll be putting together some resources for businesses on the west coast over the coming weeks.

Stay tuned – there are plans for some introductory rates so you can discover our services and what we can do for you. This will also include helping you with some social media marketing campaigns, website security and maintenance packages, and of course, one of our specialties – website SEO audits.

Let me know your thoughts on the services you’d like to see us deliver!

Some Goals For 2016

A lot of people make “New Year’s Resolutions” – which of course, get broken by January 2nd. I’m sure we’ve all been through that and as some of us get older, we know from experience that the likelihood of keeping a resolution is rather dim.

On the other hand, there is something to be said for setting goals for the coming year. Instead of trying to make a bunch of gigantic steps all at once, setting goals to be accomplished later in the year can realize greater gains by taking baby steps each day towards accomplishment.

There are probably some goals like quitting smoking that should be attempted in one big step. And if January 1st works for you in giving up the habit, that’s great!

I like the process of goal setting as taught by Brian Tracey in the video below:

This 12 step goal setting process can be really helpful to getting or accomplishing what you really want.

Personally, I don’t share too many of my serious goals with others. I keep them to myself. But other more fun goals, I will share.

Fly Fishing Goals

As many of you know, I love fly fishing – and in 2016, I’d like to do more of that. I’ve been privileged in my lifetime to have fished in some great places including Puerto Rico, Northern Ireland and a variety of places in Canada. One of my favourite experiences was fly fishing at the Canadian Fly Fishing Competition that was held in Grande Prairie, Alberta.

This year, I think some spey casting on the River Spey in Scotland would be awesome! Spey casting is a unique method of casting fly rods using special gear to cast flies a long distance. I’m not very good at it – but with some good instruction and practice, I hope to become more competent.

And yes, to accomplish this goal, I hope to acquire a Highlander Spey Rod – check them  out.. works of art as well as amazing quality. I own another Meiser rod and can’t say enough about it.

Baking Goals

chocolate babka

Homemade Chocolate Babka

“Baking goals?” you ask? Yes! I actually enjoy baking a variety of breads and my son David loves to eat them! One of our favourites is the “No Knead” bread that uses a very little amount of yeast and is left to rise for 12 or more hours. It’s pretty easy to do, and yet it turns out a wonderful artisan quality bread loaf that I usually bake in a cast iron Dutch Oven.

But this year, I’d like to try even more artisan bread baking styles. I have a fantastic book by Peter Reinhart entitled “The Bread Baker’s Apprentice: Mastering the Art of Extraordinary Bread.” If you’d like to learn more about the bread making process, I highly recommend it and you can get it from Amazon, here.

Be sure to check out the loaf on the cover of the book… now that’s a loaf of bread I’d like to bake at some point this year!

David and I have also been learning to make Babka – but so far, it’s all been chocolate. We need to experiment with a few other Babkas like poppy seed… or pecan caramel.. or cinnamon and brown sugar… yum!

More Music in 2016!

In my town, a Blues Festival is held every year in June, and it’s really convenient as it is located less than a block away from where I live. The main stage is held in a park that I can walk to in less than a minute. That means if the weather is great, my son and I can be hanging out with the crowd listening to some blues, or if it’s raining, we can hang out at home and still listen to some live blues! With the windows open, we can hear the music from the park inside the house.

This year, I’d like to take in even more music festivals that are held around Southern and South-Western Ontario. Especially if Steve Strongman is playing them. If you’ve never heard Steve Strongman, you are missing out… his live performances are full of energy, great blues, and he is a wonderful entertainer. Always a crowd pleaser. David and I are both happy to be able to say that we’ve seen him twice.

So yes, more music in 2016… and I’d like to get back to some guitar playing myself. It’s been 15 years since I’ve done any picking.. and I recently got my guitar back after lending it to some older sons.. and I can tell you that if you stop playing… for that long, you really do lose a lot. I never was any kind of accomplished guitar player, but when I was younger, I did take some lessons and focused on the “Travis Finger Picking” style. Many years later though, I’ve forgotten most of it.

But perhaps a half an hour a day or so will help to get some of that back.

So those are some fun goals for the next year. How about you? Want to share what yours might be?

Happy New Year…

Yes, it’s a week into the new year of 2016, and I’ve been quite remiss in not updating this blog over the past year! Time seems to fly by even more quickly and with so much going on in life, there’s not a lot left over for blogging.

It’s nice to see 2015 in the rear view window but mostly am looking ahead. The past year brought a lot of changes especially business wise, and I foresee a few more in store over the next 12 months.

On a personal level, I’m constantly amazed at how fast my son is growing! David is just the most awesome kid, and even though he’s hit the teenage years (can you believe it?) – there is no “teenage angst” to be seen. We’ve worked on a number of projects together although we still haven’t finished building the guitar kit we purchased earlier in the summer. That is a project we need to get back at, but we also need some extra tools to finish it off. Maybe later this month?

Many long ago readers and visitors will remember much talk about a band named “Wise, Young & King” which my eldest son drummed for.  This band no longer exists – but Alex and the lead singer along with another previous member of WY&K reformed into a new band called “Suns Of Stone.” They have released 2 CD’s and I’ve had the pleasure and good fortune to be able to attend some of their gigs – very impressive!

In the past year, Suns of Stone also added one of my other older sons, Colin, as their bass player! So it was doubly exciting for me to see them early in December of 2015 – two of my sons playing up on the stage.  Last week, I discovered that it’s also official that Suns of Stone will be opening up for Saga at The Phoenix in Toronto, on February 6th. In addition, there are rumours about a possible European tour later in the  year… I might apply for a roadie job! 🙂 More on news of the tour as it becomes available.

I’d like to wish you all a Happy New Year and all the best in 2016. Hopefully this one will have some exciting and positive things for you! And perhaps I’ll find the time to blog more than just a couple of times every six months.

A Natural Cure For Cancer?

It was pretty exciting to come across a fairly recent article discussing some research that is going on into a cure for some cancers. There is likely not a single person who has not been affected by cancer in some way; either having suffered it or watching a loved one endure the pain and wasting away from this brutal disease.

Of course, billions is spent every year on both research and treatment for cancer. Some of the treatments, according to some, seem almost worse than the disease itself. So imagine researchers surprise when they discovered that a common weed may hold the answer to solving this scourge of a disease. Yes, a common weed that has often been classified as “noxious” and that most of us try to get rid of when it appears growing in our lawns!

Apparently, Health Canada has given permission for human trials because of the other preliminary evidence that exists that an extract from this weed can actually cause cancer cells to “commit suicide.”

Interested? Is it possible that a natural remedy that is cheap and in abundance might provide legitimate hope for cancer sufferers?

Well.. take a look for yourself. Dandelion Root – Cure For Cancer?


Our New Project

guitarOne of the things about my son David that I am so happy about is his love of music. I had always hoped he would enjoy music and also realize that having an interest in a wide genre would give him an appreciation for many musical styles, composers, artists and musicians. And with that in mind, I actually took him, along with his older brother, to see The Who when David was four years old. I wondered if it would be worth it; the tickets were expensive and I wondered if David would remember the concert when he was older.

But I also thought, “When David is 21, and discovers he had the opportunity to see The Who, but his dad did not take him, then he might be very disappointed. At least he will be able to say he has seen The Who, even if he doesn’t remember.”

So it was agreed to take him. And not only did he remember it for days after, he still remembers it almost ten years later. And I’ll never forget how disappointed he was when the concert ended: He wanted more of The Who!

Later, David saw The Irish Rovers (we had front row seats and to their amazing credit, everyone of the Rovers commented after to David about they noticed him singing along to every song), and he enjoyed that. He has also see live, many other bands including Deep Purple, George Thorogood & The Destroyers, CCR Revisited, Pat Benatar, Nazareth, Trooper, Cheap Trick, Honeymoon Suite, David Wilcox… the list goes on.

With living in Orangeville and having the Orangeville Blues & Jazz Festival almost in our backyard, he’s also had many opportunities to listen to fine Blues musicians and a highlight was in 2014, when we got to not only hear Steve Strongman, but have a conversation with him during which Mr. Strongman gave David his “game pick” that he had used during his performance. That pick has become one of David’s treasured possessions.

guitar2And today, it makes me very happy that my son has such a varied list of music on his Iphone and knows how to operate the CD player, and I will often hear him deciding to play a Deep Purple CD… or The Irish Rovers… or Steve Strongman.. or Suns of Stone.. or whatever he is in the mood for at the time.

This year, when David and I visited the Orangeville’s Bluesfest, we were very happy to see that Cithara Guitars were there again this year, in the Vendor’s area. Last year, David had a great time at their tent, talking about their products and the fact that their lines of guitars are named after Greek deities.  So this year, when he saw that they were offering kits to make your own guitar, he told me it was a project that he would love to work on with me. Our own guitar… that we  made ourselves from a kit…

So that is what we are doing. David and I agreed on the acoustic guitar kit and are now working on it and so looking forward to completing it.. and playing!

And I’m very happy for a project that my son enjoys and wants to work on, with me!