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BT Book Club – You Will Know Me

Leah Sarich | posted Monday, Apr 24th, 2017


Here it is… the next book for the BT Book Club!! You Will Know Me is a thrill ride. The New York Times  says of author Megan Abbott “she resumes her customary role of black cat, opaque and unblinking, filling her readers with queasy suspicion at every turn.”

It’s the story of Katie and Eric Knox and their talented gymnast daughter Devon. Devon is an Olympic hopeful and the family has done everything it can to support her. Then, a tragedy strikes their gym community weeks before a very important competition and the Knox family must figure out how far they’ll go to make sure their daughter succeeds.

Allison Streit from the Calgary Public Library says BT Book Clubbers will love this book for its fast pace and relatable characters. We’ll be chatting about You Will Know Me on Facebook Live on May 15th. Pick up your copy at the local library today! Happy reading!





BT Book Club – The Forgetting Time

Leah Sarich | posted Monday, Apr 3rd, 2017


Hello BT Book Clubbers!!

Thanks so much to those of you who joined us on Facebook Live for our previous discussion about Neverhome. Our next chat will be about The Forgetting Time by Sharon Guskin.

The story is about four year old Noah and his mother Janie. Noah has always been a little different but one day he starts asking for his ‘other’ mother. He knows things he shouldn’t know. He’s terrified of water but his mom doesn’t know why. Eventually, Janie starts to wonder if Noah is talking about a previous life. She enlists the help of a disgraced professor who believes Noah may the case he’s been looking for his entire career.

This book is a serious page-turner, gripping and fearless. And it asks all those big questions… what happens to us after we die? what is the meaning of life? of motherhood? of regret?

Please join me, some BT producers, Allison Streit from the Calgary Public Library and other readers just like you.

Look for this discussion in two weeks… April 17th on Facebook Live.

Happy reading!!

BT Book Club – Book 2 – Neverhome

Leah Sarich | posted Wednesday, Feb 22nd, 2017


Hello BT Book Clubbers!

Well, have you started reading book 2 yet? It’s called Neverhome by Laird Hunt. I just started reading it last night and the first line hooked me!!  This novel is about a woman who disguises herself as a man so she can fight in the American Civil War. So many questions and I haven’t even finished the first chapter. Why is she going to fight? Why isn’t her husband? What does he think about his wife doing this? How does she disguise herself? What will happen when the fighting begins?

Please join us in partnership with the Calgary Public Library and pick up a copy and read along. We’d love to hear what you think of the book! Librarian Allison Streit and I along with some other BT producers will be sharing our thoughts at our next BT Book Club chat on Facebook Live and we’ll hope you’ll join us! This discussion is set for March 28th so lots of time to find the book and dive in!

Our last BT Book Club chat on Facebook Live has already had over 2800 views!!

As always, happy reading!

BT Book Club – 2 days left for Lucy

Leah Sarich | posted Tuesday, Feb 7th, 2017

BTBookClub lucybook1

Hello Book Lovers!

We’re going to have our first BT Book Club discussion on Thursday, yes 2 days from now, about My Name is Lucy Barton! Allison Streit from the Calgary Public Library and I will have our regular book segment on Breakfast Television (we’ll chat romantic books in the spirit of Valentine’s Day) and then right after the show we’ll discuss My Name is Lucy Barton on Facebook Live.

Have you finished it yet? I have and I can’t wait to hear what you think!! Along with Allison and I, you’ll hear from several of our behind the scenes BT producers who’ve also read the book!

Also on Thursday’s segment on BT, Allison will reveal book number 2 for the BT Book Club… and here’s a hint: it’s about a heroic woman during the American Civil War.

See you on Thursday and as always, happy reading!

BT Book Club – My Name is Lucy Barton

Leah Sarich | posted Thursday, Jan 19th, 2017


Hello and Welcome to the BT Book Club!!

I couldn’t be more excited about this! I can’t wait to share my love of reading with all of you. We are partnering with Allison Streit from the Calgary Public Library who is a fellow book lover. Allison will do her regular monthly segment on Breakfast Television and then following that visit we’ll have our BT Book Club chat on Facebook Live.

Allison and her colleagues at the Library have chosen My Name is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout as our first book. If you don’t know this author, she’s an American novelist most famous for her Pulitzer Prize winning book Olive Kitteridge. You might know the name of this book because HBO turned it into a miniseries starring Frances McDormand. (This miniseries is amazing, by the way, and a must-watch if you haven’t already.)

My Name is Lucy Barton is Elizabeth Strout’s fifth novel, a New York Times Bestseller. It’s a mother daughter story. It starts with Lucy Barton hospitalized with an infection, a complication from a routine surgery. Her mother, whom she hasn’t seen in years, comes to visit her. The two revisit Lucy’s difficult childhood that was filled with poverty and abuse. Growing up, Lucy’s main source of solace was in books and she quickly realized she wanted to be a writer. As soon as Lucy was able she fled her childhood home and years later this hospital visit from her mother allows them to reconnect.

I’m just a few chapters in but the first chapter is one of the best I’ve ever read, and I’ve read many! So far, My Name is Lucy Barton is very accessible, thoughtful and compelling! Delighted to hear what you think!

I’ll post again closer to our chat date with specific times and how you can weigh in! Happy reading!

World Diabetes Day

Leah Sarich | posted Monday, Nov 14th, 2016


It’s World Diabetes Day. According to the Canadian Diabetes Association, one in three Canadians has diabetes or prediabetes and these numbers are only going to go up as our population ages. Diabetes is a chronic disease that is challenging for patients to manage. Endocrinologist Dr. Doreen Rabi says she sees her patients struggling to manage their blood sugars, administering insulin, tracking diet and exercise and watching stress levels. She says if diabetes is not managed properly patients are at risk for serious complications like kidney disease, heart disease and lower limb amputation.

So Dr. Rabi and her research team are working to develop some new technology that can help. They see patients using current technology like fitness or diet trackers along with the blood sugar monitoring devices but these technologies do not talk to each other to distill the important information. Dr. Rabi says patients often get frustrated by this and stop using the devices. So, Dr. Rabi and her team are working with computer science specialists to see if they can come up with a piece of technology that will either gather all the relevant information or allow the current technologies to share information. Her researchers are currently talking with patients and their care providers to determine which information is the most crucial. They hope to have an application that they can test on current diabetes patients by next year.

For more information on diabetes visit this website.


Eye Health

Leah Sarich | posted Tuesday, Oct 18th, 2016


For the DeRaaf family it was just another annual eye exam for the kids. But this year, they would be shocked by what they found. Optometrist Dr. Farrah Sunderji says she noticed Abby was having trouble doing the eye exam even though she was wearing glasses. And, there were no lenses that appeared to help. After looking at her retina photographs Dr. Sunderji knew there was something seriously wrong and referred Abby to a Pediatric Opthamologist at the Alberta Children’s Hospital.

Turns out, Abby has a macular dystrophy that is progressive and for which there is no cure. Her brother Bryson has it as well. The diagnosis was devastating for the children and their family, but these days they’re moving forward. Their mother, Joel, says it was a “deer in the headlights” kind of feeling at first but these days the family is adjusting. While there are no glasses that will help the children see better, there are many low vision aids that are helping them live a more normal life. Smartphones and tablets are also incredibly helpful.

In the meantime, the DeRaaf family has become very passionate about encouraging all families to get their children’s eye examined. For Eye Health Month, she wants families to take advantage of the fact that all eye health exams in Alberta are covered by the province for children. She says you never know what you’re going to find.


For more information on what an eye exam is all about visit this website.

Getting Ready for Flu Season

Leah Sarich | posted Wednesday, Oct 12th, 2016


Hard to believe but flu season is already upon us. In fact, Calgary is a bit of a hot spot already for influenza activity in the province. I spoke with Medical Officer of Health Dr. Judy Macdonald who tells me for the month of September there have already been 18 lab confirmed cases in Calgary, 37 in the entire province.

But the good news is the public immunization clinics open in Calgary in just over a week an a half on Monday October 24th. And yes, the vaccine is still the best way to protect yourself from this serious illness. However, this year, there may be some confusion about what vaccine delivery method is best for the kids. This flu season, the United States has decided to move away from the nasal spray vaccine, saying it doesn’t work. But here in Canada, officials are sticking with the nasal spray. Dr. Macdonald says the National Advisory Committee on Immunization in Canada has reviewed the relevant data, including recent Canadian data which the Americans may not have considered, and says the nasal spray is still effective and safe. So this year in Calgary, when parents take their children to get immunized they will be offered both the nasal spray for children or the shot. The only difference is the nasal spray will not be touted as the preferred method to deliver the vaccine. Both options will be presented as equal.

Dr. Macdonald is encouraging everyone 6 months of age and older to get immunized against influenza. She reminds us that the flu is not a simple cold, it’s a serious infectious disease. Last year, there were 1600 lab confirmed cases of influenza, 62 of those people died. Influenza comes on suddenly with fever, runny nose and cough as well as debilitating body aches, fatigue and fever. These symptoms can last for weeks. Those people most at risk of developing complications from the flu include pregnant women, children under the age of 5, seniors and those with chronic illnesses or who are immune compromised. But the flu can be very difficult even for healthy people. Dr. Macdonald says the vaccine is free for everyone in the province. People can get the vaccine at one of the public health clinics across the province, some pharmacies and doctor’s offices will also be offering it.

Again, the public health immunization clinics open Monday October 24th. To find a location that’s right for you go here, to find out more information on influenza go here. 

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