Friday Favourites

I am a week late on this post but I figure better late than never. I headed out of town last weekend for a Rodan + Fields Training Conference in Vancouver and it was a form of travel that I hadn’t pursued in many years: coach bus! Seriously, we are talking probably ten years ago when I travelled throughout Australia is the last time I was on a bus. Unless you count booze bus trips to Seattle Mariners and Seahawks games during the last few summers. Pre baby haha! Ah those boozy days…. seems like a different lifetime ago! Back to the ol’ Greyhound. It was a fairly comfortable ride so no real complaints. Being preggo I managed to snag one of the seats at the very front and no one ended up seated next to me. The four hour trip allowed for a lengthy snooze and some solid reading time. You know, the solo time that tired mommies dream of! As I packed for this excursion, I thought it would be a great idea to share some of my travel favourites, essentials for making any trip a smooth one. I have to say, when you are not travelling with a toddler, it is so much easier! Much more room to pack for yourself as well. I missed her like crazy throughout the ENTIRE weekend but this was a trip for mom. Plus there was some serious daddy-daughter bonding while I was away. I might have been a teensy bit jealous. What is in your bag when it’s time for a little getaway?

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The Good Bean Chickpea Snack – The bag should come with a warning: HIGHLY ADDICTIVE! Also extremely delicious and an extremely healthy snack. Perfect for you preggos out there, might I add. I managed to squeeze an extremely large portion into a plastic travel mason jar, perfect when you need a little energy fix when on the go. I picked up mine at Costco.

Ted Baker Travel Set – Whether it is a plane, a car or a bus, if you are travelling solo it can hard on your neck. I like to snooze on my hubby’s shoulder in transit but needless to say last week he wasn’t around. This handy neck pillow keeps you from doing the head bob while you get your beauty travel sleep. Love a good eye mask too. Plus this print is gorgeous! Available at Indigo.com.

Tieks Ballerina Slippers – If you haven’t discovered this Vancouver shoe designer, you need to check it out now! Comfort and quality, all the way. Though it is reflected in the price, I stand behind them being a solid investment. I used to keep them in my desk drawer at work when my feet were ready to quit on the chosen footwear I had been wearing. They are so comfortable. For travel, they fold up real small so that you don’t even notice them hiding in your bag. Best part? They come in every color imaginable. You might find it hard to pick just one.

Chloe Roller Ball Perfume – I am slightly obsessed with these Chloe scents. They are so fresh and subtle. This compact size makes them perfect for travel and the roller ball ability allows for quick and easy application no matter where you are.

Blanket Scarf – Every girl needs a good blanket scarf. On top of coziness and making a great fashion statement, they double up as a blanket when you need it. Mine is now sold out however Kit & Ace has so many gorgeous options here.

Transport Tote – A good bag is an absolute necessity for travel. I prefer ones with a bit of structure and to be nice and roomy inside. I don’t go for a lot of inserts or pockets. One of my favourite features is when you have a bag in a bag, usually attached and with a zipper enclosure. Perfect for putting tinier make up bags and smaller items you need. I know: a bag, within a bag, within a bag. I sound ridiculous. It makes my life easier though! The one I have listed here is PERFECT and available at Nordstrom however I recently bought one online from ZARA and it meets my needs as well. Can a girl really have too many bags anyways?

Compression Socks – Call me an old lady if you want. These are lifesavers! Great for travel because when you are sitting for too long, especially if you travel by plane and are higher altitudes, your feet can swell. These are excellent for keeping swelling at bay. I have also been told they are great for exercising and I personally know how amazing they are in the later stages of pregnancy. Even if you don’t want to wear them all day or out in public, throw them on when you are having your coffee or taking a moment for yourself. You will thank me! Dr. Segal makes it easy to love these socks with great prints. They’re adorable!

Oprah’s What I know For Sure – If anyone knows me well they know I am a HUGE FAN of Miss Oprah. She is always good when you need a pick me up. Hubby bought me this book for Christmas and though it touches on some deeper points, it is a nice, light read. Great for travelling as it can be difficult to concentrate. Loving this book and a little sad I am almost finished reading it.

BKR Water Bottle – It may not be possible with air travel due to so many security restrictions but in any other form of transportation, you can take your own source of water. I love my BKR bottle and it usually comes with me everywhere. There is something comforting about drinking out of a glass bottle. These bottles are extremely hand holding-friendly and are cute to boot with their different sleeves. I happen to have a few sleeves; between baby and hubby and few of my bottles have seen better days. Now I just have one small and one large, with a few interchanging coloured sleeves. Solid investment for a good water bottle though. Love my BKR’s!

Happy Travels Friends! Oh and Happy Friday!

 

Manic Mondays

Ah Mondays….Seriously though, don’t you just want to start the day over sometimes? Even if the sun is shining, Mondays sometimes have a gloomy cloud hovering over them. I named that cloud Murphy, for Murphy’s Law. Anything that can happen, will usually happen. When it does, thank god for deep breathes, counting to ten and Starbucks drive-though. This morning consisted of a few mishaps. First off, thanks to my darling hubby’s snoring, I did not get even remotely enough sleep. It’s also quite common when you wake up in the middle of the night, your mind will race over EVERYTHING that worries you at that time. I must have spent over an hour at 3am just thinking, and contemplating, and worrying about things I had no control over. Especially in the middle of the night! I think the lack of sleep was making me nauseated so I popped a Gravel- thankfully it has a dual purpose of knocking you out! Next thing you know, the whole family has slept in and we are now running very behind. I made it out the door in record time and scored a really good parking spot at the swimming pool. As I tried to carry our swim bag, Hallie and my coffee to the parking pay station, I managed to bop her poor head on the pay station and spill coffee all over myself. Thankfully the little knock didn’t seem to phase her but I was sure soaked and upset. The swim lesson was great, probably our saving grace of the morning. Upon getting changed I discovered I had brought a diaper bag that contained ZERO diapers. Cue me begging another mom in the group for her size 2 diaper; Hallie is a size 4. I prayed for no poop explosions as we wrapped up our errands and headed the heck home! It may be small stuff, and in the grand scheme of things, not important at all. But sometimes, every now and then, shit just feels like it is never going your way. Thank goodness no major tantrums entered the realm of the morning. My sweet girl seemed to be oblivious to all these ‘mom problems’ and gleefully carried out the morning with a smile on her face. I love that girl. I hope you are all having a much better Monday! Though it seems to be picking up. You can’t really complain after an afternoon of baby snuggles on the floor watching Mickey Mouse Club & Curious George. Not to mention the impromptu kitchen dance party after lunch. My daughter LOVES hip hop. She is a total gangster… Happy Monday friends! Now here are some fun photographs that are unrelated to this post, but I simply had to share.

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Hubby finally finished some wood for me to hang as a shelf on my Anthropologie Brackets! Also a great Rodan + Fields display area!
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The importance of saving money…
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What do you do when your baby finally takes a nap? Why you make a Valentines heart garland for her bedroom for of course!
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Bump Progress! On the left, I am pregnant with Hallie at 20 weeks. On the right, that is me NOW and bump is almost the same size… 15 weeks! Bump number two proves to be growing a lot quicker.
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Friday Favourites

TGIF! There is just something about Fridays that just feels good, don’t you agree? Even though I do not work a Monday to Friday job, I still try to keep routine throughout the week, and Fridays still feel like Fridays did when I used to work in an office or the store. Of course, they feel a lot better when you can kick of the weekend with a cocktail at 5pm. Not this girl. Sparkling apple juice for me I suppose!

I wanted to kick off this Friday Favourites by sharing some of my top beauty picks. I recently went on a bit of a shopping spree at Sephora and Nordstrom and have a few select favourites to share. I also want to share my Rodan + Fields obsession. Not only do I get to sell fantastic skincare products, I use them personally and get to reap the benefits of that on a daily basis. So here they are!

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1.) Revlon Dramatic Definition Mascara – I have such a hard time choosing a mascara. Do I want to curl, add volume, lengthen, the options are endless. How IS a girl to choose? I am obsessed with this particular mascara. It separates perfectly, adds a nice amount of definition and length, and NO clumps! I purchased mine at Shoppers Drug Mart.

2.) Sephora Collection Illuminator – Even in the dead of winter, this illuminating powder gives the perfect dusting and glow. Can’t wait till summertime brings me a natural tan to go with it.

3.) Amaterasu Liquid Eyeliner – This eyeliner is so easy to apply. Even for you shaky hand gals, like myself. This liquid liner glides on, creating the perfect jet black sweep across your lid. Easily makes even tips as well should you be looking for a more dramatic look. It lasts all day, looking just as good at bedtime as it did in the morning when you applied it. I used to purchase this at my friends boutique Wishlist, however they are moving to be an online store only.

4.) Hidden Corrective Concealer – I picked up this bad boy at Sephora. I have tried a few concealers in my day. Some good, some not so good at all. Once I experienced the sleep deprivation that parenthood presented to me, I thought I would never have well-rested looking eyes again. I welcomed the dark circles and assumed they were the trade off for having such a beautiful baby. THEN, I found this concealer. Also from Sephora, this concealer is exactly what it says it is. Corrective. Not only does it hide fine lines and dark circles, It’s a dream to put on and feels like it is GOOD for my delicate eye skin. I doubt I will ever change concealers after using this one.

5.) Rodan + Fields Restorative Eye Cream – Much like my reasons listed above, eyes can be a very revealing area of your face. Late nights, stress, poor eating, dehydration, being a MOM! All these things can really take a toll on your poor mommy eyes. This eye cream is amazing. I have been using it since Christmas and am already seeing rather dramatic results. I think hospitals should be giving out new mom packages when you leave the hospital and THIS cream should be at the top of the gift list. Remove eye make up and combat fine lines and dark circles even further with the eye cloths. I stand by this product 100% and am so excited that I get to spread the message to other mommies – your tired eyes can be saved!

6.) the lip scrub – There are many lip scrub versions out there and generally all do the same thing. I happen to love this one simply for the flavour and scent. Lip skin is so very sensitive and needs to be cared for on a regular basis. Especially living in Kamloops! This long winter exposure is new to me and had left me with very weathered lips. No puckering up for this girl! I love this stuff- it has brought my pout back to life. (Note: Take a look at Pinterest for some great recipes and ideas on making your own lip scrub! Makes a great hostess gift too in a mini mason jar!)

7.) Chanel Eyeshadow Palette – I love the ombre shades of this eyeshadow palette. There is something for every occasion whether it be home with the kids or heading out for a night on the town. They blend so nicely together, hence the ‘ombre’! Top quality shadows as well, they look freshly applied even when you are about to take it off before bed. Always one to impress Coco. =)

When it comes down to it, I could shop for cosmetics anytime. There are so many fun options out there, for all tastes, and at every price point. I think as a new mom I forgot about my face for a little while. It’s easy to just slop on some lip gloss and throw your hair up in the ‘mom-bun’ and go about your day with a baby. We need to remember how good we used to make ourselves look pre-baby and how good that made us FEEL. That is what is important and I believe. Look good to feel good. I love trying out these different products, experimenting with new looks, and always having fun with it. Life is too short for crappy lipstick right?

Happy Friday friends! Enjoy the weekend!

 

A New Year

Hello! It is completely shameful that I have not written a post since Christmas! I do have excuses, I promise, and most of them valid. Christmas was wonderful. Very relaxing, Hallie had a ball with her gifts and all of festive fun. I know that each year as she gets older it will get better and better. Next year she will understand a bit more and I just know she will love Christmas just like her momma.

We didn’t have long to relax after the overindulgent holiday as we took off to visit family in Vancouver as of the 27th of December. We spent the week living in a hotel, eating out for most meals and visiting friends and family. While all of this sounds like a good time, doing it with a toddler presented it’s challenges. I am not sure if it was just a overstimulating time (Christmas) or living in a different environment, but kiddo just wouldn’t nap. This was fine until we reached about 4pm each day. She would start to show signs of crankiness and boredom, eventually resulting in a full on public meltdown in a restaurant during dinner. I know it wasn’t her fault, she was just exhausted and they were all very long days. But girlfriend should just listen to her momma and take a GD nap once in awhile! The best meltdown was in a little Italian joint my dad took us to. We had a large group and were seated right near the front entrance, why I am still not sure. It was a busy night so there was a wait for tables. Multiple families basically stood on top of us, hovering and watching us eat as they waited for their own table. It was awkward to say the least. About twenty minutes into being seated, Hallie decided she no longer wanted to sit in the highchair. She would rather run around. That not being an option, she decided to scream a lot. A kind waiter distracted her with an orange popsicle. The lovely orange popsicle very quickly ended up all over my face and in my hair. Onlookers stared at me with judgemental eyes as I tried to contain my screaming child who was now convulsing at this point, trying to escape my hold. I swear none of these people had kids. It’s parent code to look away in such scenarios or at least smile sympathetically and wink like you know exactly how it feels. Not these jerks. Finally, I had an AH-HA moment which also might be viewed as a fail to some people. I pulled out my phone, propped it up on the salt & pepper shakers, and put Paw Patrol episodes on repeat. Folks, we have some peace. Everyone can finish their meals and the dagger eyes from strangers can cease. Thank the lord for those Paw Patrol pups is all I gotta say! That was probably the most chaotic episode during our trip. It doesn’t matter anyways. Two hours later they do something so gosh darn cute that your heart melts into a million pieces and you just want to hold them close. That is what babies bring, all sorts of moments. I am blessed and thankful for even those crazy ones.

We drove home to a very snowy Kamloops on New Years Eve. Our neighbours were having a party so the kids got to run around burning all of their energy before bed. I managed a tiny glass go champaign since it was a special occasion, and retired home with Hallie at about 7:30pm. Not going to lie either, I was asleep by 10. New Years is for the energetic folks. Even though my participation in New Year’s Eve was low, I am so excited that it is a new year. It’s going to be a great one! We have a few exciting things going on here.

Hallie – always growing, always surprising us and keeping us on our toes. This will be a fun year for her for sure.

Baby two – coming this July! Can’t come quick enough. This pregnancy has wreaked absolute HAVOC on my body. So different from the first time round. I am so thankful to be going through it all obviously but the symptoms are really hard to handle. Looking forward to the second trimester!

Hubby has gone back to school! Sort of… He will be doing online studies to obtain his realtor’s license. Very exciting stuff for him and I am so ready to support him along this road to a career change. You got this babe!

I’ve gone back to work! Sort of…. I have recently partnered with Rodan + Fields as a skincare consultant. It’s all done from home and online so it is definitely something I can balance with Hallie and running our home. It’s a little scary in the beginning but it’s fun and challenging and I feel it is going to be a great opportunity for me to explore. Stay tuned! (Oh, did I mention I will get young and beautiful skin again?! Good-bye mommy bags under my eyes!)

Grandma is coming! My mom has sold her home back in Vancouver and will be moving here at the end of February. We have been renovating the bottom level of our home into an in-law suite. It’s going to be an adjustment having her so close but I believe as long as we set boundaries that suit both our needs, we will be okay. She is going to be close to her grandchildren too which is the ultimate goal. I also get a babysitter now and then! #win

Summer – can’t wait for summer! We bought a trailer when we moved to Kamloops but it was the end of camping season so we haven’t even used it. This Spring I am going to get it cleaned up and even do a bit of redecorating (read: ‘glamping’ anyone?). Come summer that baby will be ready to go. As soon as baby #2 is ready we will be off to the lakes every weekend. I can taste the icy cold beers already!

Fitness – I have been letting myself off the hook lately due to morning sickness and catching the flu on New Years. I am actually still bedridden. Trying to be optimistic and not complain though! As soon as I am feeling better I am signing up for prenatal barre. It’s like ballet barre fitness. I have never done it before but I took ballet for thirteen years when I was a kid and always miss it. I think this will be a nice and easy way to get some healthy exercise for me and baby, plus have some fun. Hallie and I will also be doing her swimming lessons as of next week. I have to squeeze my chubby pasty body into a swimsuit in the dead of winter…. yippppeeeeeee! She better enjoy swimming!

So that is my little list of what is going on here and things I am looking in the next few months. What are you looking forward to in 2016? Goals and aspirations? I am still sorting out goals. I find it challenging to have goals in the New Year because I am such a goal setter all year long. I am always striving to be this and do more of that. I think my main goal should be achieving those goals! I am a little scatter brained at sticking to things I suppose.. Tomorrow is always a new day and a fresh start I suppose!

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If you have a toddler, you know how challenging a family photo is.

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New Year, new business for me! ( http://www.rodanandfields.com )

 

Getting Through The Holidays Preggers

The holiday season can be a busy and stressful time. Overwhelming even. I am unsure why that is! December is such a beautiful month, filled with season changes, the hustle and bustle of Christmas approaching, get-togethers and parties with family, friends and work colleagues, holiday baking and cooking, the list goes on and on. Perhaps that is exactly why it gets to be such  a taxing time of year. There is just so much of everything. Usually I approach the season with a positive and ambitious mindset. I make gift wish lists in advance, get out the holiday cards nice and early, plan out my baking in the early days of December, and am organized on all of the Christmas activities and parties we intend to participate in. This year has been a very different story! Just so I feel somewhat accomplished, the holiday cards and shopping were taken care of in a relatively timely fashion. Thankfully as I sit here on the Monday before Christmas, those two pesky tasks are not on my to-do list. Go me! The baking however did not get completed so over the next two days I am planning on turning my kitchen into Santa’s cookie workshop. I am sure we don’t need the sugar (or the extra calories) but there is something about having all sorts of cookies on hand at Christmas to nibble on. It’s almost mandatory. I also have some gift-baking to do today and tomorrow so even if I manage to talk myself out of the self-indulgent cookies and cakes, I still need to do the gifts! Activities and Christmas parties seemed to be a far off idea this year as well. A few things contributed to this. One being that we are now living in Kamloops and know very few people. When you don’t have many friends around you don’t have many party invites to RSVP to! We attended one party at our realtors house which was lovely but short lived. Lets just say it was not a party tailored to toddlers and there were far too many stimulating things for the Little Miss to get into. We managed to spend about 40 minutes at the party before she broke three ornaments and tried to redecorate the parlour bathroom with toilet paper. That was our only party! We did go to see Santa Clause and we did make a day out of getting the Christmas tree. There were a couple other activities going on round here but either I didn’t have my act together or the drive to get the family out to them. Next year I aim to do better. With two kids! My oh my. Lastly, I think one of the biggest contributor to being a little less organized than usual this time of year is that fact that I am three months pregnant. Mommy brain remains and pregnancy brain has returned. What a vicious combo! Today for example I look around and see a pile of clean laundry I need to fold, baking ingredients for one recipe out on the counter, a slow cooking dinner in the oven, three crafts on the table that have been started yet definitely not finished, and a pile of gifts and wrapping paper, another task started and forgotten. Pregnancy brain brings an entirely new meaning to puttering (Puttering reads: doing many things at once and not really completing anything properly!). To top it all of, this momma can’t even relax with a Christmas glass of wine! Which brings me to my next few points. I have rounded up a few pointers on how to keep your shit together this time of year, even when you are a crazy and hormonal pregnant lady.

Weight Gain – Embrace the fact that everyone else is trying to watch those Christmas calories, but YOU are expected to pack a few on. Now is not the time to stress about it. So enjoy that extra cookie and don’t feel the need to hide the chocolates. This is one time you can absolutely get away with it! Not to mention seconds of turkey dinner.

Get To Know Your Cocktails – I don’t know about you but Christmas time for me just looks so damn good as a bold glass of red wine, sitting by the fire. I shed a few tears when I realized I would not be merrily clinking my spiked eggnog glass with my family and friends. Luckily, I feel a bit too yucky right now to really miss all the tasty cocktails. However, that doesn’t mean I want to feel left out with my sparkling water and lime. Get to know what sort of cocktails are out there! There are plenty of fancy drinks you can simply minus the booze from and they still taste delicious – throw them in the right glassware and they look good too!

Side Note – stay hydrated! It is easy to think when the weather is colder that maybe you do not need as much water. You need even more! I seem to be constantly thirsty for water with this pregnancy too. I keep my reusable Starbucks Refresher Cup with a straw filled with ice water all day long.

Buy Plenty Of Tissues – Hormones, hormones, hormones. Soppy Christmas movie, holiday commercials that hit the spot, the sight of my baby girl trying to put the ornament back on the tree (or sneakily taking it off), the sight of my husband and baby girl cuddling together watching Rudolph…. All of these beautiful holiday moments seem to reduce me to a leaky mess of tears! Embrace that this sort of behaviour is encouraged this time of year and is meant to be that mushy time of year where you spend all of your moments with people you love. Just keep the tissues nearby.

Rest Up – Winter is the perfect time to grab a cozy blanket and curl up. Pregnant? You are ever more deserving of such an activity! While exercise is important, so is rest. Put those feet up and take advantage of the fact that you can ‘sit this one out’. You are pregnant and do not have to do every bloody Christmas inspired activity that there is. It’s called the Preggers Flag – WAVE IT!

Here we see the art of ‘relaxing’ like a true pro!
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Some DIY Gift finished products:
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Had to share.. My father in-law is a painter adhere is my attempt to create a painting for him this year! (Rookie work!)
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Hope you are enjoying Christmas Week!

An Early Christmas Present

It has been pretty hard to keep this secret but the Hubs and I decided to make a little public announcement today. We are having a second baby! All of my posts prior to this where I vaguely mentioned not feeling well and exhaustion, well now the secret as to why is out. Holy mother morning sickness! This pregnancy is completely different to when I was preggers with Hallie. Achy bones, total exhaustion and not to mention being a very sick girl throughout most of the day. I have no idea why they call it morning sickness as it seems to rear it’s ugly head at any time, including the middle of the night. But OTHER than all of those pesky little annoyances, we are so excited that another little baby will be joining our family. Baby number two is due in July of 2016 which makes me 3 months along on Christmas next week. We will be finding out the sex come February (I think) and though I am pretty eager to have another perfect little girl, Hubby has his heart set on a boy. Of course we will be over the moon happy with whatever the outcome is, boy or girl, I just have so many cute girl clothes to reuse. I also don’t know where exactly we are going to put this tiny bundle of joy, who comes with all of the large bulky baby items you use with newborns, as our house is on the tiny side and we are already splitting at the seams. I am going to put that out of mind for now though because there isn’t a darn thing I can do about it yet. I guess I will start to worry about space and organization in late spring.
So now begins the agonizing of how on earth I will cope with two babies under two. Hallie, already being the free spirit that she is, will no doubt keep blossoming into more and more of an energetic little dear. I wonder if her sibling will share her wild personality traits or if he/she will be more on the chill side. Either way, the two of them will have me running around non-stop. Thank goodness it will be summertime and we can spend most of the waking hours outdoors. Bring on summer! I have been so ill that I do not even miss alcoholic beverages but as the warmer months creep up, I will be parched thinking about icy cold beers and cocktails that I am missing out on! So many things to think about between now and then too. Most of all I need to take a step back and soak up the moments. Even the sick ones. Pregnancy only lasts for a short time and I intend to enjoy it! Well at least enjoy using the preggo card to get extra relaxation time on the sofa, should it ever present itself hah. Not to mention all of the yummy treats this time of year! Turkey AND ham on Christmas next week? You bet. Cookie exchange? Sign my pregnant ass up. Tis the season!

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Meeting Santa Clause!

Last year when we went to meet Santa, my precious newborn babe didn’t even stay awake. She fell asleep on route to see him and we waited until we were second in line to sit on his knee to wake her. She remained awake for all of one minute and then fell asleep again. It’s still a darling picture but she is very much asleep. This year, I had no idea what to expect. Judging by how emotional my girl can be (she slightly takes after her mother there) I was thinking it would probably not be a positive experience. I braced myself for tears and screams. So all dolled up in our Christmas plaid, we set out to meet Santa Clause. The Kamloops North Pole set up at the mall was great. They did a very good job. The Santa, though he be a little on the skinny side, was wonderful too. In my opinion, with Santa, the ‘jollier’ and chubbier the better. But he was great. Hallie however was very unsure of the entire process. There were no tantrums or meltdowns or tears. It was actually just awkward. She was frozen like a statue on his lap and had this funny look on her face. Not quite a smile or frown. Just awkward. She even gave a very uncomfortable wave to the camera. No matter what happens it is still a very special moment for parents and we loved every minute of it. It’s not every day your child really meets Santa for the first time! At least she was coherent this year. =) Children really have a way of making this time of year so extra special. I can’t wait to experience the many more ahead of us. Merry Christmas Hallie!

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Furry Girl eyeing up my Hot Cocoa….
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