Stephan Mathias
Author Archives: Stephan Mathias

Avoiding Bed Bugs While Traveling in Surrey

Surrey is a beautiful area of British Columbia. It has good people, interesting sights and delicious food. Traveling around Surrey can be an exhilarating experience. Just the thought of moving all over the land and seeing new things is enough to convince a lot of people to go traveling. However, there is more to think about when you are traveling on the road. When you travel through a city or province, you might have to stay in a hotel overnight. When you stay in a hotel, you run the risk of picking up bed bugs. This is not a pleasant prospect, as bed bugs are a terrible nuisance. Read on to find out how to avoid bringing bed bugs home with you.

How Do Bed Bugs Get Picked Up?

Dress Scattered on Bed

The major way of picking up bed bugs is by putting your clothes directly on the bed in the hotel. Bed bugs will typically be hiding in mattresses, box springs, sheets, and pillows. If there is no encasement on the mattress, this is a dangerous spot to leave your belongings. Bed bugs love hotels, because there are so many new people passing in and out each day. They have a prime chance to hitch a ride with each new guest that arrives.

Preventing the Spread of Bed Bugs

To protect against bed bugs, it is important to always be vigilant. Your luggage and clothes should be placed on an elevated surface. After your luggage is out of harm’s way, you can thoroughly inspect the room to make sure it is clear. Look for nests or swarms, as well as bed bug egg sacks. If everything seems to be okay, this is a good sign. However, you still must not let your guard down.

Traveling Mattress Protectors

Covering the bed is an essential component of staying in a hotel. If the hotel does not have mattress protector, you should bring your own. These are covers that are placed on top of the mattress, preventing the bed bugs from emerging. This is a good way of ensuring that the bed bugs do not come out of the mattress and attach themselves to your luggage.

After Returning Home

Even after all your precautions, it is still possible that you may have brought some unwanted pests home with you. Do not bring your luggage into the house straight away. First, inspect everything carefully to ensure there are no bugs attached. Then you can leave the luggage in the garage for a day or two, just to ensure that no bugs are getting into the house.


Do not allow the threat of bed bugs to prevent you from having a good trip in Surrey. By thinking ahead, you will easily be able to outsmart the annoying pests. Traveling mattress protectors are good methods of preventing bed bugs from following you home. In addition to this, you will need to be on the lookout for possible signs that bed bugs are in the hotel, or attached to your luggage.

Hobbies to Consider When Living in Surrey – Guns, Clubs and Fitness

Fitness Club

Surrey is a great place for anyone to consider calling home. Whether you’re entering retirement and wish to settle down somewhere pleasant or are making the impactful decision to expand your family and want to raise your kids in a family-friendly environment, this area of the country could very well be the answer.

No matter what your situation, it’s important to ensure you have plenty to do to keep yourself occupied. All too often, we end a busy day with plopping down in front of the television for the evening. However, there are a number of good reasons to pick up a hobby including:

  • Opportunity to meet new people
  • Helps relieve stress
  • Can make you a more interesting person (just imagine all the cool Facebook pictures you can post when you’re regularly doing something fun and exciting!)
  • Helps you get out there, move around, and lose weight

I have been a long-time resident of Surrey, and there are so many exciting opportunities for you to take advantage of, and there are a few hobbies in particular you should be aware of.

Take Up Target Shooting

Target Shooting

It’s not my intention to persuade you to consider gun ownership. However, if you’re open to the idea of owning a firearm, target shooting can be a great way to release tension and stress. Not to mention, you can more easily protect your loved ones when you are well-versed in gun use.

It’s important to consider the fact that there are obvious safety concerns when there is a gun in the household. Especially if you have children in the home, a few things you should do to lower your chances of an accident include:

  • If you feel your children are mature enough, allow them to be involved in target shooting. This not only allows you a fun activity to do together, but it also eliminates dangerous curiosity and shows your kids the capability of a firearm.
  • Read reviews to find the best gun safe to keep your weapon carefully stored away.
  • Always keep the safety turned on when the gun is not in use.
  • Keep gun unloaded when not being used.

Start a Club

Golf Club

With a population of over 468,000, there’s sure to be people in the area who share your interests. With the power of the Internet at your fingertips, it’s now easier than ever to reach out and socialize. With this being said, consider starting a club that’s focused on a passion of yours.

For instance, gardening and book clubs are popular. However, you may have a more unique passion. Whether you are an avid collector of butterfly specimens or are focused on raising awareness of the benefits of a vegan lifestyle, consider reaching out to others who feel the same. This gives you a unique chance not only to enjoy something you love but also to find joy in sharing your experiences with others who truly appreciate what you’re offering.

Regular Exercise Regimen

Regular Exercise

Let’s face it. We have busy lives, and it can be easy to just go home and be lazy after a grueling day at the office. However, doing so can have a number of negative side effects, and these are only heightened if you work in a setting where you spend most of your time sitting. Just a few include:

  • Weight gain
  • Development of heart problems
  • Depression

While it may take you some time to get accustomed, engaging in a regular workout regimen is a proven way to elevate your mood and your health. The term “runner’s high” is popular because it has merit. When you workout, endorphins are released that leave you feeling good after hitting the gym. If you’re not sure how to get started, Surrey offers a number of gyms you can take advantage of. Their staff can help point you in the right direction, and just a few you can consider include:

  • Platinum Athletic Club
  • Goodlife Fitness
  • Elevation Fitness
  • Anytime Fitness

If you have health concerns, it’s a good idea to talk to your doctor before starting a new exercise regimen.

Taking Quality of Life to a Whole New Level

Life in surrey is exciting, and there are so many fun and exciting activities the entire family can take advantage of including:

  • An exciting afternoon of adrenaline-pumping action at Thorpe Amusement Park
  • A quiet time for reflection at Savill Garden
  • A sophisticated evening at New Victoria Theatre

While you certainly have a number of options when it comes to entertainment, I have found that, when you pick up a hobby, you can find more fulfillment in life. Surrey offers a great environment for each of these exciting pastimes. Not only can they keep you occupied, but they can enhance your overall quality of life in the process.

Getting Closer to Nature in Surrey

Let’s face it. As much as modern conveniences have made our lives simpler, they have created a disconnect in the relationship human beings used to have with nature. While we certainly wouldn’t want to go back to the days where we had to forage for our food or make fires using sticks and stones, many would be willing to admit they don’t spend much time outdoors.

Our sedentary lifestyles are more alarming than you may realize. A recent poll revealed that one in five children in the UK don’t spend any time playing outside, and an astounding 75 percent spend less time with nature than those in prison get to enjoy. Whether your outdoor activity level is reflective of these statistics or you just want to get closer to nature, there are a few unique ways in which you can achieve your goals.

Go Small-Animal Watching

Small animals are cute, and they put a smile on our faces. Here in Surrey, there are a number of woodland creatures you may have never encountered, and seeing them in person is much more exciting than watching them through a television or computer screen. Make a list of small creatures, and round up the kids for an outdoor adventure. You can make a fun game out of seeing who can spot the most. Just a few animals you can choose to include are:

  • Badgers
  • Beavers
  • Deer
  • Foxes
  • Hedgehogs
  • Mice

Some animals like turtles can even be taken home and managed as pets. However, make sure you are prepared to offer the animal proper care. To make sure the tank is clean at all times, the minimal investment in a turtle tank filter can prove to make your new addition to the family an easy one to manage.

Weekend Camping Trips

Not many of us are brave enough to abandon our comfortable lives and live off the land, but going on a weekend camping trip can bring you much closer with nature, allow you to learn to be more self-sufficient, and offer you a great way to spend quality time with the ones you love the most. There are dozens of available campgrounds in the Surrey area just waiting for you to enjoy, and just a few tips to ensure you make the most of your time include:

  • Ensure your tent allows ample room for all participants
  • Don’t forget to bring a lighter or matches to easily make a fire (unless, that is, you want the truly rustic experience!)
  • Practice fire safety methods with younger participants several days before the trip

Plant a Garden

We’ve become increasingly dependent on the grocery store to provide us with the sustenance we need. However, if you have a yard, there’s nothing stopping you from creating a garden including your favorite herbs, vegetables, and fruits. We spend hundreds of dollars every week on groceries, and, since it’s so easy to simply run up and grab something, we don’t really think too much about all the effort it takes to grow the food we eat. However, when you watch yours grow through the various stages, you will have a better appreciation for your food. This brings you closer to nature, helps you save money, and reduces the amount of waste created in your household.

Improve Your Mood and Overall Health and Vitality

Spending more time in the great outdoors isn’t just a way to get fresh air and have an enjoyable time. It can also prove highly beneficial to your overall health and vitality. Just some of the many health benefits to be taken advantage of include:

  • Easier to engage in workouts and stick with exercise regimens
  • Can promote weight loss
  • Increases proper brain functioning and concentration skills
  • Increased levels of vitamin D
  • Decreased aches and pains in seniors
  • Boosted mood

Carefully consider how you spend your free time. There are likely hours that inadvertently add up throughout the day doing things like watching television or otherwise being lazy. So, turn off the television, shut down your mobile devices, and step outdoors with your loved ones to start getting closer with nature in Surrey today.

Unusual Quirky Facts About Surrey, B.C.


Many people know that Surrey, British Columbia’s second largest city is seven years older than the province’s capital city of Vancouver; however, here are some unusual, quirky facts about Surrey that locals as well as visitors will find very interesting.

beardAccording to Guinness Book of World Records, Sarwan Singh the human being sporting the longest beard in the world is a resident of Surrey, B.C. As of November 2008, this Sikh believer’s beard measured 7.7 and ¾ feet in length. An audience of approximately 200 men, women, children and media reporters watched as Singh’s beard was immersed in water, carefully brushed on a flat surface and measured three times by Guinness judges. Singh family members maintain that because Sikh’s believe that hair is a gift from God, not only does Singh not cut or trim his beard but his hair as well. Sarwan Singh serves as a music instructor at Akal Academy in Surrey.

The world’s first structure erected and dedicated to honor peace between two countries is the Peace Arch located on the border of Canada and the United States of America. The arch is geographically situated on the borderline shared by British Columbia and the U.S. State of Washington. Erected in 1921, the arch honors the 1814 signing of the Treaty of Ghent. Built by laborers from both countries, this 75-foot-tall edifice bears the inscription “ Children of a common mother” on the American side and “Brethren dwelling together in unity” on the Canadian side.

rodeoThe Cloverdale Rodeo and Country Fair draws locals as well as record numbers of tourists to the Surrey area as a part of Vancouver Day activities. In conjunction with the fair dating back to September 1888, a rodeo has been an added attraction since 1945. Several venues in the area host events encompassing culinary contests, arts and crafts and livestock and horticulture competitions. In addition to a traditional midway and rides associated with the fair, 1977 saw the institution of a bed race through the town’s main street.

2016 marked the 24th year for the annual International Writers’ Conference that takes place in Surrey. This event draws attendees from around the world as they gather to share with and encourage would-be authors and published authors of all genre. The conference format includes workshops and master classes conducted lecture-style. One highlight of the conference is the Blue Pencil Cafe which affords writers the opportunity to book a 15-minute one-on-one appointment with anyone on the year’s guest roster.

output-419280_640Interest and enthusiasm continue to mount relative to a Surrey cultural event known as Doors Open. Commencing in 2012, approximately 30 venues opened their doors free of charge to the public to acquaint or reacquaint them with a host of activities available in Surrey. One activity associated with this event is destined to keep Surrey abreast of the digital age. Participants of all ages look forward to what is billed as a treasure hunt accomplished via geocaching. Regardless if more clues lead to parks, houses of worship or historical structures, treasure hunters come away with a new appreciation for their city as well as prizes awarded to a limited number of lucky hunters.

The Coolest Things to Do in Surrey

I love living in Surrey. It is a city full of pride. Many of my fellow neighbors and I volunteer our time to the community. We take pride in this city because there is a lot to be proud of. It is a beautiful town full of excellent attractions. You never have to worry about finding something to do here in Surrey. There is always something on the go. If you want to experience my magical Surrey, here is a list of the coolest things to do around here.

1. Make a Trip to Crescent Beach


The thing I love the most about living in Surrey is Crescent Beach. Whenever I am feeling a little low, I simply head to the beach to instantly put a smile on my face. This a great spot because there is something here for everyone. A walk along the beach, fishing, swimming, boating, picnicking, sunbathing, birding and general beachside loveliness are all on offer here. I also like to eat at The Cabin when I am at the Crescent Beach.

2. Go for a Bike Ride at Mud Bay Park


I am a bit of a birder, and that is the main reason my favorite place to pump my pedals is out at Mud Bay Park. This attraction is one of the most incredible birding spots in the world. The park is inside the Boundary Bay Important Bird Area, which is part of Western Hemisphere Shorebird reserve network. As I glide my bicycle around the many paths that wind their way through the park, I am blown away by the sheer number of the birds. They are everywhere you turn. It is really a beautiful place to experience. You don’t have to ride your bike either. Hiking is another great way to experience Mud Bay Park.

3. Go Shopping at the Surrey Night Market

Summer is one of the best times of the year in Surrey, and one of the highlights of the season for me is when the first Surrey Night Market of the year happens in the beginning of June. I absolutely love this festival of the senses. There is live music, rides and entertainment for all ages. The vendors at the market are incredible. They sell a wide range of crafts, goods and food. You have to bring a big appetite with you to the Surrey Night Market. Your eyes will be signaling constantly to your stomach that another delicious treat has appeared in front of them.

4. Taste Some Delicious Beer and Spirits

For me, one of the coolest attractions in town is the Central City Brewers + Distillers. The tour of the brewery and distillery is always a must-stop for all my friends who come to visit me that enjoy a good drink. The tour is fun and educational, but it is the brewpub experience that is most worth the visit. The hardest part every time I go is deciding which of their delicious beers on tap to fill my growlers with.

Volunteering and Its Amazing Benefits

As much as I usually find it hard to create some volunteering time, the benefits when I do are enormous for me, my entire family, and the entire Surrey community. Below are some of the many benefits I get from helping others.


 1. Connection

Volunteering allows me to connect to the community in Surrey, BC and make it a better place. I have learned that helping out, even in the smallest of ways, can result in a significant difference in the lives of those in need. Volunteering is a two-way street, and as much as it benefits the cause you choose to help, it also benefits the practitioner. Dedicating some time as a volunteer helps me to expand my network, make new friends, and boost my social skills. By exposing me to neighborhood resources, fulfilling activities, and people with shared interests, volunteering broadens my support network and strengthens my ties to the entire community in Surrey, BC.

2. Improves my mental and physical health


Having a meaningful connection to another person usually has a significant positive impact on the mental and physical health of many individuals. As such, the social contact aspect of working with and assisting others has had a profound effect on my psychological well-being. To me, helping other people not only delivers immense pleasure, but the stable support system developed from regular contact with other like-minded individuals also protects me against depression.

Volunteering helped me to find new meaning and direction in my life, an effect I have noted in almost every other volunteer regardless of age or life situation. Volunteering not only helps me to take my mind off my worries but also keeps me mentally stimulated. It has provided a new sense of purpose.

Volunteering generally involves a lot of walking, and although I am not an exercising person, the walks do me a lot of good and help me to stay physically fit.

3. Increase my self-confidence


As human beings, we are hard-wired to give unto others, and the more we tend to give, the happier we end up feeling, which boosts our self-confidence. While volunteering, I am always aware that we are helping other people and improving the community as a whole. The natural sense of accomplishment I get from knowing that I am making a difference improves my self-confidence. As you may well know, the better people feel about themselves, the more likely they are to view their lives in a positive manner and have future goals. Because my role as a volunteer gives me a sense of pride and identity, I am today more confident about life and what lies ahead than I ever was before.

4. Advances my career

connectionVolunteering has not only helped me to get experience in other fields but also to meet with different people in those areas. Although I am not planning on changing careers, volunteering has given me the opportunity to practice some important workplace skills like project planning, teamwork, problem-solving, communication, task management, and organization. I felt more comfortable stretching my wings at work after honing these skills as a volunteer, which worked wonders for my career. Volunteering also offers the chance to try out other career options without necessitating long-term commitments, an excellent way to gain some experience in any new field. Volunteering opportunities also provide extensive training, and I even become an experienced crisis counselor after volunteering for a women’s shelter in Surrey, BC.

5. Brings fun and fulfillment to my life

Volunteering is an easy and fun way to explore my interests and passions. While doing volunteer work, I found out that meaningful and interesting work can also be quite a relaxing and energizing escape from my day-to-day work routine. Volunteering also provided me with renewed motivation, vision, and creativity, which I carried over into my personal and professional life.