A Childhood Reunion with Naked Snowshoeing in the Countryside

Feature Image for The Jade Zone Blog Post 'A Childhood Reunion with Naked Snowshoeing'

For those like me who live in the city it can be a total blessing to escape to the countryside every so often. Peaceful, cozy and with a breath of fresh air – there is simply no comparison to city life, which includes much noise and pollution.

Some of my good friends who’ve been in my life since elementary school have chosen rural life over urban life, while others like me have made the choice to live amidst the hustle and bustle of the big city.

Several weeks ago I received – along with another friend who lives in the city – an invitation to a childhood reunion in the countryside. We had never done anything of the sort and many of us had not seen each other in almost a decade. While it does feel like we’d all seen each other as recently as yesterday, as you know life goes by at an extremely fast pace and the ”just yesterday” soon turns into ”years ago”.

At first I was hesitant to confirm my presence. I asked myself what the heck I would do to keep occupied in the countryside? I felt like I would easily get bored.

Especially since at this time of the year there is a very special event happening in my city called Igloofest – which is an outdoor wintertime dance party with killer DJs and ”beatz” that takes place on a 50,000 square foot playground. It attracts thousands of partyers and includes a competition for who is wearing the best one-piece snowsuit. There are tons of ice sculptures, bars and castles, a mega slide, fire pits and many games. For example this year they are hosting the first ever Christmas tree throw, which is suppose to mimic the Scottish caber toss.

For more on the Igloofest please visit their website here: http://igloofest.ca/en/

The great thing about Igloofest is that it happens over four weekends. I had actually attended Igloofest the weekend prior, and I couldn’t wait to return after having a total blast. I felt like leaving the city for the countryside would be taking me away from this party. But since I had gone the weekend prior, and since I knew I would be able to attend again during the last two weekends of Igloofest, I was easily able to get on board for the trip out of town. In all, I would only be missing one weekend at Igloofest out of the four weekends. No big deal, right?

In fact, during my first visit to Igloofest on the first weekend I decided to livestream on Periscope. From this I was able to produce a full thirty minute YouTube video that can be watched here.

I still thought that I might get bored going to the countryside, but felt that it was worth it in order to reunite with old friends. In the end I proved myself wrong. There was nothing boring about the countryside. We ate well, we drank lots of great wine and we were more than merry to find ourselves once again reunited.

The scenery was beautiful and the air was fresh and clean. Those we crossed in the village were friendly and community oriented, which is something that I’m not necessarily use to seeing in the big city. There were no ambulance sirens or car horns in the background when it came time to get some shut-eye. And the house was heated by an old wood stove fireplace, which I find both rustic and romantic. It was simply a very pleasant and relaxing experience.

With that being said, I figure that I should elaborate on some of the highlights of my weekend. To begin with, I was dared to wear a Borat mankini and to run outside into the cold winter night. For those who do not know what a Borat mankini is, here is the photo of me wearing it:

Jade Sambrook wearing a Borat mankini outside in the middle of winter after being dared to do so by childhood friends
Jade Sambrook wearing a Borat mankini outside in the middle of winter after being dared to do so by childhood friends

Everybody knows that Jade Sambrook is a die hard nudist, and somebody thought it would be funny to dare me to wear such a garment. Particularly since it doesn’t cover much to say the least. Naturally I slipped it on without hesitation and promptly headed outside as requested. This provided great entertainment for everybody, including many laughs.

The next highlight of my weekend was a day of downhill sliding. The hill in question had a 20% slope and was over 2 kilometers long. It is by far the most extreme downhill slide I’ve ever done. It definitely brought the child out in me. Sliding downhill like this on a plastic sled was fast, fun and crazy!

Here is a quick video clip showing a short portion of the downhill slide:

The last highlight of my weekend involved typical winter sports that are not always practical to attempt in the city, such as snowshoeing and cross-country skiing. Suffice it to say that I got a healthy dose of exercise and burned off all of the calories from the abundance of food that I consumed over the weekend.

Warning: if you scroll down you will see human buttocks. If you are offended by a simple naked bum, then please refrain from scrolling down, cover your eyes or immediately leave this blog! 

Even better was that I was able to try these sports wearing my Scottish kilt, simply because the weather was so great. It was only minus 5 degree Celcius, which as you may know is abnormally warm for this time of the year.

Jade Sambrook snowshoeing in the countryside wearing a Scottish kilt
Jade Sambrook snowshoeing in the countryside wearing a Scottish kilt

And even better than that was that my friends – who once again know just how much of a die hard nudist I am – dared me to take the kilt off and try snowshoeing in the buff. Of course I did it without hesitation and I can now say that I have a claim to fame. I don’t think that many folks have done this sort of thing before me and I highly doubt many folks will be jumping on the bandwagon after me.

For those who do not believe me, below is what I consider to be a classy picture of me in action – snowshoeing in my birthday suit.

Please be warned however, that if you scroll down you will see human buttocks. If you are offended by a simple naked bum, then please refrain from scrolling down, cover your eyes or immediately leave this blog!

Jade Sambrook snowshoeing in his birthday suit as an extreme sport
Jade Sambrook snowshoeing in his birthday suit as an extreme sport

Many folks may not know that the etymological meaning of the word gym is “naked” – originating from the Greek word ‘gymnos’. In fact, the Greek use to compete in sports wearing nothing but their birthday suit. Now, I’m certain that their sports did not involve winter snow, but I think we can agree that I gave new meaning to the term ‘extreme sport’ – insofar as snowshoeing is concerned.

In the end I’m very happy that I accepted the invitation for a weekend in the countryside. Again, I was able to eat, drink and be merry. I was able to try things that I’ve never tried before (a.k.a snowshoeing in a kilt). And more importantly, I was able to spend valuable time with lifetime childhood friends – some that I had not seen in ages.

I’m already looking forward to my next visit to the countryside. And in the meantime, I’ll be attending Igloofest this weekend and probably the weekend after that. Turns out that it’s a win-win for me afterall, since I got to visit the countryside and I still get to attend Igloofest.

The only question remaining is what I’ll be wearing to Igloofest? A Borat mankini, a kilt, a one-piece snowsuit or my birthday suit with snowshoes?

Held Hostage by Social Media Learning

Blog post feature image by Jade Sambrook for 'Held Hostage by Social Media Learning' on The Jade Zone Blog

It’s been a while since I’ve posted something to my blog. In fact it’s been a while since I’ve posted anywhere – including a video on my YouTube channel or a podcast on my website.

There is a reason for this however. I got side tracked learning about social media, content creation and content marketing. And I’ve discovered that Jade Sambrook is quite passionate about all three of these subjects.

It all began when I started researching how to grow my YouTube audience. Somebody in a YouTube video mentioned a social media management tool by the name of Hootsuite, where you can manage all of your social media profiles from one centralized location. I hurried to give it a try and I have since fallen in love with this tool, to the point that I simply cannot live without it.

Somebody else mentioned that Twitter was a good way to promote your blog posts – and so I started the process of growing my Twitter audience using a service called Social Quant. With their free 14-day trial I went from 572 Twitter followers to over 1100. And it’s still growing to this day!

If you want to generate traffic to your blog posts using Twitter, the more followers that you have the more successful you will be. Obviously promoting your blog posts to zero people is not going to do wonders for you. Simply put, the more Twitter followers that you have, the better.

Here is an example of a tweet promoting one of my blog post’s to my Twitter followers:

I learned of another tool named Commun.it that helps you engage with your Twitter audience. Having followers is one thing, but engaging with them is what will allow you to stand out amidst all of the clutter and noise that is on the Twitter platform. I absolutely love Commun.it and have in fact substantially increased engagement with my Twitter community. This includes getting folks to visit my blogs.

Here is an example of a tweet that I generated using Commun.it:

I also learned that Pinterest is a very powerful search engine and traffic generator for blog posts – if you set things up correctly that is. I therefore set out to improve my Pinterest profile, and more specifically, by using a great tool called Tailwind.

The list goes on and on. From automated tweets using the Buffer tool, to creating beautiful social media content with the Canva or Pikmonkey tools, I’ve learned a ton about social media, content creation and content marketing.

It can however get quite overwhelming at times. There are simply so many tools and services that it becomes difficult to choose which one to use. Of course they’re not all free, and if one were to use them all one might quickly go bankrupt.

I will definitely be writing an in-depth blog post on this subject in the near future. And I will list all of the tools that I’ve learned about including those that I’m simply unable to live without.

But for today, I just wanted to mention why I’ve not posted to my blog in a while. Lets just say that I was away learning how to become an expert with social media, content creation and content marketing. Indeed it can be said that I was attending Social Media University, or that social media was holding me hostage. Regardless, it was definitely for a good cause.

Now, I’m no expert yet – as like I had mentioned earlier –  it can be quite overwhelming at times. Actually overwhelming might be an understatement. Furthermore, social media is something that is always evolving to the point that you have to stay on your toes if you don’t want to be left behind and in the dark.

One thing I’ve learned is how important it is to be consistent when it comes to creating content. Whether it’s a vlog on YouTube, a podcast or a blog post, it’s very important to consistently be producing quality content that is of value to your audience. Clearly I have failed when it comes to consistency. It’s just a fact that I’ve always been sporadic with my podcasting, vlogging or posting to any of my blogs.

Jade Sambrook in his home social media studio
Jade Sambrook in his home “social media studio” where his blog posts, podcast episodes and YouTube vlogs are produced

I’ve also failed in terms of offering content of value. Now obviously personal lifestyle blogs like this one are quite a bit different compared to knowledge based, niche based or tutorial based blogs. With the latter you are blogging about a particular subject that is usually providing answers to people who need a problem solved. Whereas with a personal lifestyle blog you are most likely blogging about various “whatever” topics, and so it becomes more a question of entertainment as opposed to a question of value. This does not mean however that entertainment cannot be valuable – because it definitely is! Or else nobody would be following and reading personal lifestyle blogs. Personally though, I simply want to do my best to offer content that is valuable and that will keep my audience coming back for more.

For example, I have another blog that is about my nudist lifestyle called The Naked Jade. And although it is a personal lifestyle blog like this one, it is a little more niche based in that it deals with a very specific subject. In fact, I seem to have more success with that blog compared to this one. Maybe it’s because of the nudity, but I like to think that it’s because it deals with a specific subject that is somehow offering value to my audience.

In the end I guess it’s really a question of personal brand, although I must admit that I do not yet fully comprehend that concept. What does a personal brand mean exactly? Do you consider yourself to be a personal brand? If so, what key words would you say identify your personal brand? I’m really curious about this, so please feel free to let me know your thoughts in the comment section below.

Now like I was saying, I want to be more consistent. It’s actually one of my main resolutions for the new year. In other words I want to keep a schedule, like for example, posting to my blog every single Saturday. And yes there are tools to help stay disciplined towards such goals. I know, so many tools, right?

Considering what I’ve learned, and considering all of the social media tools at my disposal, there is simply no excuse for me not to be creating and posting content consistently. With that being said, it’s time for me to start working on my next blog post!

🎉 Spreading New Year Cheer 🎉

Miss GG's Closet 💋

Happy New Year luvs! I have a special post today to promote your blog and spread the new year cheer! 2015 is coming to a close but 2016 is just beginning! So we are all bloggers here and to support each other for the new year I’d thought this would be a fun way to get new readers on our blogs!

How you can spread the cheer…

  1. Reblog this post
  2. Leave your site address down below in the comments
  3. Spread the cheer by checking out at least 5 of the sites listed in the comments below!
  4. Lastly follow someone’s blog that you are genuinely interested in (listed in the comments)!

2015 was a great year but let’s make 2016 an even greater year! I wish you all the best in 2016!

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The Jade Zone Vlog – Episode 5 – ‘How to Put on a Kilt’ (Warning: Nudity)

WARNING: Viewer discretion is advised as the video contains nudity and may not be suitable for some audiences.

Ever wonder what is worn under a kilt? Ever wonder how a kilt is put on from start to finish? Ever wonder how a kilt is worn from head to toe?

Wonder no more! In this episode of The Jade Zone Vlog, Jade Sambrook goes through the steps from start to finish on how to put on a Scottish kilt.

Speaking of kilts, you may recall in episode 2 of the Jade Zone Vlog how I explained receiving my new handmade and custom measured Royal Stewart tartan kilt. I was very fortunate to receive such a quality kilt as a gift from friends who purchased it for me while attending a wedding in Scotland this summer. I also compared the new Royal Stewart tartan kilt to my old ”off the rack” Black Watch tartan kilt.

For your interest, episode 2 of the Jade Zone Vlog can be viewed HERE.

Now as you may know, my vlog is hosted along with many other videos on my YouTube channel. Feel free to visit my YouTube channel and to subscribe to it if you like what you see. And of course feel free to leave a comment or question on any of the videos, or to like or dislike any of the videos depending on how you feel about them. I always appreciate feedback even if it is negative. I am a civil libertarian and believe strongly in free speech and in the right of everybody to hold an opinion. In other words I will never strike down your view even if it is contrary to mine, or contrary to what I am saying in my vlog or in my video.

Again, please know that episode 5 of The Jade Zone Vlog contains nudity. Viewer discretion is therefore advised as the content of the video may not be suitable for some audiences.

In the meantime – should you decide to watch it – you’ll end up learning what is worn under the kilt. That is if you couldn’t already guess from my nudity warning.

The Jade Zone Vlog – Episode 4 – ’19 Questions’

What exactly is the 19 questions tag and how did I discover it?

Recently I participated in my first Twitter party where I ended up meeting tons of new people from the “Twitterverse”. During this party, I gained a bunch of new followers to my Twitter account. For those of you who do not know what a Twitter party is, there is nothing to worry about as I will be explaining in full detail in a subsequent blog post. Suffice it to say that I find them to be amazingly fun and I would encourage anybody who has not tried one to eventually do so.

Of course I like to stay connected with my followers and with those that I am following, regardless of the social media account in question. I like to engage with those in my list of friends. Not only do I enjoy building a community, but I also like to be part of that community in an active manner.

In doing so, I often find myself checking out (a.k.a stalking) the social media profiles of those folks who are a part of my community. In other words, if you are following Jade Sambrook on Twitter, I might be inclined to take a look at your YouTube channel. If I am following your blog, then I might be inclined to take a look at your other social media accounts if you have provided an inviting link to bring me there.

Now in regards to the ’19 Questions Tag’, I ended up subscribing to the YouTube channel of one of my new Twitter followers who I gained during the Twitter party. One of her videos was called the ’19 Questions Tag’, where you answer nineteen questions and hope that others will do the same. I guess it’s like a game of tag, but with questions instead. If your “it”, then you have to answer them.

I thought that this was a marvelous idea. Not only did it seem like fun, it just so happens that I was in search of material to vlog about. I wasn’t actually tagged in the proverbial sense, but again, I needed material for my vlog so I was more than motivated to give it a try. I set-up my camera, plugged in the microphone and turned on the lights. After calling out those famous orders that are yelled out by movie Directors – “lights, camera, action” – I proceeded to answer all 19 questions as honestly as possible.

The result is the birth of The Jade Zone Vlog – Episode 4 – ‘The 19 Questions Tag’.

Go ahead, try it out for yourself. You’ll find it’s quite fun! And you might just learn something about yourself while those who are watching will equally get to know you a little better. Personally, I’m still wondering if it’s possible that peanut butter is my favorite smell. I’m still not sure about that one.

A Morphsuit for Halloween on Periscope and the Underwear Dilemma

For Halloween 2015 I decided to wear a gold morphsuit that I had purchased several years earlier and that I had only worn once back then. Coupled with my gold three striped Adidas shoes, I was able to call myself an Oscar award trophy.

Originally Jade Sambrook was not planning on going out for Halloween and would have been content to simply stay home and take it easy. On second thought though, I told myself that Halloween would be the perfect occasion to broadcast on Periscope. I figured that I would most likely get hearts, comments and followers on the Periscope app if I were to broadcast myself walking down a busy street in downtown Montreal on Halloween night while wearing a morphsuit. In the end I was right.

What is Periscope? Read my blog post Jade Sambrook’s New Toy: The Periscope App.

Before being able to leave the house dressed in a morphsuit, I had to debate with myself whether I should wear anything underneath. I tried the morphsuit on with underwear, then without. I repeated this process many times, never sure of what my final decision should be.

Jade Sambrook in his Halloween costume: The human Oscar award trophy.
Jade Sambrook in his Halloween costume: The human Oscar award trophy.

Although it is much more comfortable, not wearing underwear creates an evident outline of your ”package” (for lack of a better term). Whereas wearing underwear – while not as comfortable – makes the outline of your ”package” a little less evident. Either way, it is simply impossible to hide a ”bulge” when wearing a morphsuit. At best all you can really hope for by wearing underwear is to hide the precise details of your crown jewels.

And at least by wearing underwear you can tell people – should they make any comments – that you tried to cover the bulge, or the evident outline of your ”package” to be more specific. In weighing the option to not wear underwear, I did have to take into consideration whether it would be appropriate or even offensive for people to see an overly evident outline of my penis.

I ended up reading many articles on the internet, and quickly realized that most people wear compression shorts or tight underwear underneath their morphsuit, since boxers or loose underwear will tend to bunch up and cause problems. In other words most guys do not wear their morphsuit without underwear. Yet these articles also gave me the impression that most men are shy, or ashamed of their bodies, or simply do not want anybody to judge the size and shape of their ”package”. Therefore they wear underwear in an attempt to hide the outline of their penis. Again, underwear or not, it is simply impossible to hide the ”bulge” under a morphsuit, although wearing underwear does help in hiding the details.

Jade Sambrook wearing a gold morphsuit for Halloween.
Jade Sambrook wearing a gold morphsuit for Halloween.

As a die-hard nudist I am neither shy, nor ashamed and I definitely do not care if people see an exact outline or judge the size and shape of my penis. Especially since the size or shape of a flaccid penis means absolutely nothing.

In the end I decided to go with underwear. Like I mentioned, while there is simply no way to hide a bulge when wearing a morphsuit, by wearing underwear you can at least tell people – should they make any comments – that you did your best to reduce the outline of your ”package”.

And of course the comments were abundant. Plenty of comments as a matter of fact.

Once downtown, I parked my car, zipped the morphsuit over my head and started my walk down Saint Catherine Street. I didn’t even get twenty feet from my car when a group of women passing by shouted ”awesome, and nice balls by the way”!

As I turned on to Saint-Denis Street some ladies asked if they could have a photo with me. The more I walked the more people addressed me, often shouting from the other side of the street. Comments like: ”that is a brave costume”, ”that is the best costume I’ve seen all night” all the way to ”oh my God that’s awesome” and ”nice penis”! The majority of comments were in fact concentrated on the bulge and interestingly they came mostly from the ladies. I guess whoever said that women aren’t visual was actually quite wrong.

Several women asked for hugs, while others took photos or simply made casual conversation with me. In fact I’ve never met so many people in one single night and I think that I’ve never been hit-on by so many women in my entire lifetime. Clearly this is interesting considering that my face was entirely covered.

Although I had many doubts that the morphsuit as a costume would be well received because it is neither unique or original, it ended up being a total hit.

Wearing a morphsuit, Jade Sambrook poses for a photo on Halloween night in Montreal.
Wearing a morphsuit, Jade Sambrook poses for a photo on Halloween night in Montreal.

In conversation with some women I mentioned my earlier dilemma about whether to wear anything underneath the morphsuit. All of them opined that I should have gone without underwear, so as to avoid underwear lines and because we should all live freely and comfortably. I guess so late at night – on Halloween night to boot – nobody would have cared had they seen an overly evident outline of a penis. Jade Sambrook certainly wouldn’t have cared, considering the amount of times that I have been fully naked in public.

Should it be of interest, you can read more about my nudist lifestyle at: nakedjade.wordpress.com.

Now back to Periscope, I decided to broadcast a short portion of my walk down the street. Firstly, the video quality of Periscope is terrible as it is of a very low resolution. Secondly, I would have liked to capture the entire night on video, but that was just not feasible. In the end however, my walk down a busy Montreal street on Halloween night while dressed as an Oscar award trophy was a Periscope success. Indeed, I ended up receiving tons of hearts, comments and a few new followers on the Periscope app.

What is Periscope? Read my blog post Jade Sambrook’s New Toy: The Periscope App.

Watch the Periscope video here:

The edited Periscope video helped me realize why I live in Montreal. It’s truly the most sociable, inclusive and friendly city on planet earth. Simply put, Montreal kicks ass! And I’m really happy that I ultimately decided to go out for a walk instead of simply taking it easy at home. Next time though I might just do it a little more comfortably: minus the underwear that is. After all, there is nothing wrong with being a little scary on Halloween night, right?

Jade Sambrook’s New Toy: The Periscope App

I recently discovered the Periscope app and wish that I had done so much earlier. Sometimes I get the impression that I am asleep at the wheel and missing the boat on just about every new trend, platform or invention. Hence the reason that Jade Sambrook only started to blog, vlog and podcast years after those became ”a thing”.

What is Periscope?

Periscope is an app for smartphones that was purchased by Twitter and that allows you to broadcast what you are seeing to the world. These broadcasts are commonly referred to in the Periscope community as ‘scopes’.  Continue reading

My purchase of the iRig Pre Mobile Microphone Interface (Video)

The camera on my iPhone 6 is what I use for pretty much all of my video making needs. As they say – and without wanting to sound cliché or dogmatic – the best camera is the one you have with you. My iPhone is at my side at all times, whether I am at home or out and about. It even sleeps beside me in my bed and is therefore available to start recording whenever I need to do so. Obviously there is no need for me to elucidate the merits of the iPhone 6 camera – we all know it can film in full 1080P high-definition, including 60 frames per second.  Continue reading

My Vote for the Next Prime Minister of Canada

There is only a couple of days to go before the Canadian Federal Election taking place on October 19, 2015. And Jade Sambrook’s mind is made up. I will be voting for the Liberal Party candidate in my riding with the hope that Liberal Party Leader Justin Trudeau will be our next Prime Minister.

Personally, I feel that Justin Trudeau and the Liberal Party have the best plan to move our country forward. While Stephen Harper and Thomas Mulcair both promised that they would balance the budget should they be elected Prime Minister – sounding like a team with a concerted political play – Justin Trudeau offered something entirely different. Instead of making a fake promise – we all know that balanced budgets never happen, and if they do it is only through a sad mix of austerity and financial fracas – he defied convention and proposed modest deficits of 10 billion dollars per year, over three years, in order to fund infrastructure for a total of 30 billion dollars. Continue reading

The Jade Zone Vlog with Jade Sambrook – Episode 2

The Jade Zone Vlog – Episode 2
Video duration: 06:47

In episode 2 of my vlog I talk about receiving my brand new hand made, custom measured kilt from Scotland. I also compare it to the ”off the rack” kilt that I had purchased from Stillwater Kilts and that have been wearing for several years now.

For Jade Sambrook there is no comparison in quality to a 100% wool kilt made in Scotland.