Month: March 2016

Family Fun At Easter

Happy Easter every bunny! See what I did there? =) I hope you are all having a wonderful weekend, spending time with your loved ones and soaking up all of the joy that Easter brings – and all of the chocolate! We have had a full house for this holiday weekend. Not only is my mom close by, my father-in-law is in town and staying with us for the weekend. The weather was cooperating up until this morning – Sunday. We had beautiful sunshine and spent most of the last two days outside in the backyard. I hope everyone got their Easter Hunt in yesterday though because right now it is pouring! I am almost relieved Hallie is too little to know what is going on or we would be outside in our gumboots searching for tiny colourful eggs in the mud. There is nothing wrong with that – sounds like a good time actually! My head cold is being stubborn though and I would mind staying in with my steamy cuppa coffee. Selfish mommy! When the whole house is up and at ’em we will attempt an indoor hunt. I think if we both carry a basket and I SHOW her how to collect the eggs, she may get the hang of it. I already surprised her this morning with her ‘Easter goodies’. She looked quite stunned and happy to wake up to a little display of presents! We even decorated the living room with balloons and streamers which delighted her to no end. The holidays are really special, even MORE SO with little kiddos. It’s just going to get better and better the older she gets too! I can’t believe next year I will have two rascals to be the Easter Bunny for. This year her basket consisted of a tiny stuffed rabbit that she seems to like, and plastic bunnies and carrots filled with Teddy Grahams. There is some chocolate but she hasn’t seemed to notice – don’t think I will give it to her until AFTER breakfast. I also had a bigger bunny but she looks rather scared of it. May pop that guy away till later too. The Easter Bunny even did up baskets for the rest of the family! Mainly just chocolates but for the hubby, I tucked in some cute hockey inspired baby boy clothes. Okay so technically it’s a gift for baby boy coming soon, but something to get hubs excited nonetheless. Well I am a little blank on the words this morning as I have yet to finish my coffee. A bag of mini eggs is calling my name too! But here is a collection of fun photos from the last couple days. All filled with good food, smiles, dirty party dresses and most importantly, LOVE! Enjoy you Easter Sunday friends!

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Potty Training

I cannot believe I am saying these words…. Is it time for such a task already?! When you pick up your toddler only to discover they have removed their diaper and are now in the nude on the lower half, then yes, it may be time. We purchased a Baby Bjourn potty when Hallie was 9 months old. I didn’t intend on starting anything that early. I merely wanted to introduce her to it so that she wasn’t afraid of it or anything when it came time to learn. Over time since then, we have successfully used the potty a few times, only by chance  and getting her to it in record time. She had no idea what she was doing or why I was clapping and cheering like a maniac when something appeared in the bowl. She also tried to PLAY with the filled bowl directly after filling it which even traumatized me slightly. For the most part, the potty sat in our bathroom up until now and Hallie would sit her kitty stuffie in it while she had bath time. Fun for the whole family haha. However, I think now it is time to really start using the potty for it’s actual function and not just an uncomfortable portable chair. I have been combing the internet for different resources and even picked up Sesame Streets ‘Elmo Goes Potty’ on DVD from the local thrift store. There are so many opinions on this subject out there that I feel like I am in the whole breastfeeding versus formula battle all over again. Parenting choices are HARD my friends! Either way though, I need to pick a method and stick to it. I have decided that when it comes to Day 1 and starting this arduous task, I am going to set up our wall-length baby gate and barricade us in the kitchen for the day. We will have our potty, toys, and all emergency materials for ‘accidents’. I just feel that by being in the kitchen it will minimize our chances for messy mishaps on my rug or sofa. Not that they are in pristine condition anymore anyways – thank you toddler and dog! I have also been told that we should stay close to home for the week while undergoing this training. Who knew it could be such a mission to take on?! I thought babies and newborns were the hard part. Toddlers, you really are on a different playing field and mommy is the rookie up to bat! Toddler 10, mom usually zero. What are your go to methods for teaching the do’s and don’t’s on toilet 101? I would love to hear from you with any tips that might help this scared momma out! Our first casual lesson with the potty and Elmo went interesting to say the least. It involved kitty on the throne again and one very happy toddler! Think she missed Elmo’s concept.

Step 1: Watching Elmo

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Step 2: Trying out technique on Kitty

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Step 3: Well I am not sure what step is happening here BUT I am pretty sure the lesson is over

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Flashback to when we bought the potty and she ‘tested it out – don’t you love a good ‘poo face’?!

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St. Patrick’s Day Preparations

Tomorrow is St. Patrick’s Day! Normally we are a bit more prepared for such occasions. I don’t think I have any green for Hallie to even wear tomorrow and there is certainly not a shamrock garland hanging from any fireplace. Tisk tisk. But we did put our green baking hats on today and whipped up some festive cupcakes! I did a basic vanilla cupcake recipe and added some food colouring in honour of our leprechaun friends. I also tried to make tiny shamrocks with a darker green icing. Lets just say that I should probably refresh my skills with a Wilton Cake class at the craft store. My shamrocks left a lot to be desired…. but it tasted damn delicious and really that is the most important part! I also managed to sneak on Pinterest today and round up some festive favourites that really caught my eye. I am sharing them with you below and the links to various websites are included, should you want to try some of these recipes out yourself! I know for a fact Hallie will LOVE the Chex Mix. I also plan to make the potato cakes for our dinner tomorrow night. I am totally craving mini yorkshire puddings but I had friend chicken on the monthly menu so that will just have to do. What are you whipping up for St. Patrick’s Day? It is all so yummy looking though a few foods I noticed on Pinterest just shouldn’t be green hah. Though I must say, the green beers look delicious. May have to have a green non-alc one, just to get in the lucky spirit!

St PaddysDay Food

Is your mouth watering as much as mine yet?!

Recipe links are here for the above images:
Irish Potato Cakes

Green Velvet Cheesecake Cake

Shamrock Shaped Sausage Rolls

Chocolate Caramel Pretzel Bites

St. Patrick’s Day Chex Mix 

Have a happy St. Patrick’s Day friends! May the luck of the Irish be with all of you.

Blueberry Pancakes & Sunshine

The sun was out in full force this morning which meant it really felt like Spring. Not a single dark cloud to threaten the day so we celebrated with some homemade blueberry pancakes. We are total breakfast people so I don’t really need any excuse to whip up a batch of hot cakes. Not to mention, Hallie LOVES them! Add in some fresh blueberries and it makes them even better – more mess! I am not sure what it is but my child needs to make an enormous mess whenever food is consumed. I wanted to share my go-to pancake recipe with you. Easy & delicious!

1   3/4 cups all purpose flour

2   teaspoons baking powder

1/4   teaspoon salt

1   tablespoon sugar

2   large eggs

1  1/4   cup milk

4    tablespoons melted unsalted butter

1   cup fresh blueberries

In a mixing bowl, whisk together your dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, whisk together wet ingredients. Add wet to dry and combine with blueberries. Warm your greased frying pan on medium-high heat. Use a ladle to spoon out your desired amount for each pancake, cooking until bubbles appear. Flip to cook other side – usually about a minute each side. That is it really. Time to eat!

So that was our lazy morning. Eating many pancakes, making lots of messes, and getting out in the sunshine. We also snuck in a quick shopping visit to the Carters store – some ADORABLE Spring finds in there right now including a great clearance section. I love this denim top and these eyelet lace tee’s  are perfect for adding some color to winter/spring transitional pieces. I picked up this Fox Sweater for $5, and the best 80’s inspired cardigan, sold out online but shown in the photos below. Can I get an amen for 80’s inspired baby clothes? Hallie pulls them off so well. Girl looks great in bloomers too.

Time to catch the last bit of sun in the backyard before dinner – love these longer days! Thank goodness for black out blinds though keeping a certain someone’s bedtime consistent! Hope you are having a wonderful Tuesday afternoon, filled with sunshine and toddler messes and smiles!

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The Benefits of Childcare

Wow! I am a little lost for words today. I have discovered how productive a day can be when you have childcare! As I may have mentioned previously, my mum has moved up to Kamloops into the suite that we created in the basement of our home. It’s a darling little suite too. Self-contained, all new finishings, really quite perfect. Many parts are nicer than my place! Most importantly, it’s a place for mum to live that is closer to her grand-babies. Lots of boundaries in place for herself and I of course hah! Anyways, one amazing part about having her so close is that I have a very willing babysitter downstairs. I have decided to take advantage of this every Monday so that I can do housework, blog, do Rodan + Fields work, book appointments, keep my sanity, etc. You know, all the usual stuff you need to do on a Monday. Having never really been without Hallie for an entire day, I was not sure how this day would go. Well let me just share how productive I was on the cleaning front! My entire home got a deep clean. A deep Spring clean! My oh my did it feel good too. Being six months pregnant I probably should have taken a few more breaks- I am severely paying for it now at dinnertime. So sore! But my house is spotless and smells incredible. I must have covered almost every square inch with my favourite cleaning buddy, Mrs. Meyers. If you can get your hands on these products I highly recommend it. I used to get my supply at Target but unfortunately, Canadian Targets closed down. I have not seen it anywhere since so if you have any leads, help a girl out! This stuff is the best. It smells amazing, cleans like a damn and is au natural. I have also worked some Honest Company multi-surface cleaner into the mix, especially for all of those baby-accessible areas. You never know when your toddler is going to try and suck on a piece of furniture or window sill. This way I do not have to worry about poisoning her with Lysol. I may not have done much other than clean today but it is going to be so nice to have all this free ‘me time’ on Mondays! So lucky to have Grandma around. Not to mention when babe number two makes his grand appearance. Something tells me I will be grateful for the help then too! So tell me fellow stay-at-home mommas- do you have a day to yourself to do whatever you like, toddler free? If so, what do you do with all of that time? Next week I plan to finish the housework in half the amount of time, and maybe even get my nails done! Happy Monday friends! Hope you too had a productive start to the week.

The real heroes…
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With my spare time I also managed to do up these quick cereal mix jars. Who wants just one type of cereal anyways? In our house we like the variety of mixing a few together! Perfect for on-the-go snacks too in these Mason Jars.
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Hallie not really caring that I just made the bed perfectly.
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Friday Favourites: Newborn Essentials Part Two

Like I said last Friday, I was completing a part two for favourites pertaining to baby boy. As I started looking online at clothing must-haves for him, I started coveting all sorts of ‘newborn items’ and put them together to share with you here. I feel that baby boy is going to be a wise soul. Perhaps even have an appreciation for vintage. Which is slightly the direction I would like to head with his ‘nursery space’ (read: section of my room). But for now, please enjoy these favourites:

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Hot Air Balloon Blanket – This blanket caught my eye instantly on Etsy and it just might be the main inspiration and direction I take for the nursery. It’s still a bit early for deciding but i LOVE it! I also like to support small business owners on Etsy.

Little Bamboo Blankets – These are from West Coast Kids and look fantastic for the warmer months we will be enduring. There is something about the fabric that looks so fresh and breathable. Perfect for swaddling too.

Land of Nod Stuffies – These wise little stuffs look perfect for my wise little man. I love the vintage feel to them and how old-fashioned they are. Everyone needs a cute piglet too.

On The Sea Activity Mat – When I first thought of having a second babe I wanted to do an Under The Sea theme for their room. Part of me still likes that idea in which case this activity mat from the Land of Nod would be great. I love the fabric used, the texture and detail, even the color.

4 Moms Rockaroo – I am proud to say that I am a proud owner of this swing! I recently scored a second-hand one in perfect condition off of Craigslist. I can’t wait to try it out on baby boy. The reviews I have heard for this brand are awesome so I don’t doubt it will be all that it promises to be. That is pure magic of course.

Elephant Tummy Time Mat – I spotted this cutie elephant mat at Toys R Us and it is a great option instead of the Of The Sea Mat. I love the cuddly elephant and there is the option to take away the toys and just have him as an elephant seat when baby is a toddler. Pretty cute if you ask me!

Rubber Bottle Holder – I LOVE this idea! Obviously not when they are first-born but great for a few months old and if they are bottle fed. Hallie was and she was stubborn, always trying to hold her own bottle. I think this would ease a lot of frustration on the baby’s part. I can also say from experience that when they can hold their own bottle, it’s awesome!

Honest Company Diapers – Just keeping in tune with the hot air balloons….. don’t you just LOVE these?! Yes please!

Happy Friday everyone! I hope you enjoyed this collection of favourites. Enjoy the weekend!

Friday Favourites: Baby Boy Edition (Part 1)

I promised last week that this week’s Friday Favourites would be one FOR THE BOYS! I have delivered too. It was actually quite challenging to do, I have to admit. Since I have been in ‘GIRL’ mode from the moment I found out I was pregnant with Hallie, it has taken some real switching gears to get enthused about boys. Of course I LOVE the idea of having a boy. I mean that it was hard to get excited about the clothes. They are not at all as fun as little lady tutus. But if you look in the right places, there are some very cute things for the baby gentlemen in this world. Once I started, it was actually hard to stop! My baby boy will be born in July and the weather is going to be HOT HOT HOT. That means a lot of onsies, rompers and cute shorts and tees. My husband seems to think a summer baby can just be naked all the time but I have a couple objections to that theory. It’s a newborn baby. They need to be toasty no matter what the weather. Plus, the air conditioning inside our house will no doubt be pumping in summertime which means baby boy will still need to be somewhat clothed. Lastly, most importantly, we are dealing with a loaded gun people! No way we are having that boy chilling in all his glory, peeing everywhere! It’s my first experience dealing with a boy and I will be taking all precautions necessary. Grandma has already bought me a supply of PeePee TeePees. I have heard they don’t work all that well but the theory behind it is GENUIS!

Another fun part of putting this post together was getting to look at all of the fun ‘newborn’ items you can get that I had forgotten all about using with Hallie. Feels like forever ago when our top priority of the morning was Tummy Time. Now our top priority rotates between cleaning up food that has been splattered all over the kitchen, or catching Hallie before she clogs the toilet with toys, eats a pair of my earrings, climbs ON TOP of the computer desk,, the list could go on and on here. It will be interesting (and slightly terrifying) to see how we balance out the day and priorities when I have my arms full of two babies. I am starting to really think it will be two babies as my daughter’s strong-willed independence seems to be fading this week. She still loves to play solo but she is needing ‘mummy’ a lot more. She constantly wants ‘up’ and is all about snuggling and hugs. I do not mind this at all either! I will take those baby snuggles and slobbery open mouth kisses all day long. It just may be slightly problematic with a newborn baby in one arm. Think I better perfect the art of baby wearing this time round. I got a bit lazy with her!

So with all of that being said, I am sharing not one, but TWO Friday Favourites with you broken down into two posts! The first one sharing some adorable swag that I am gonna need to get . I mean of course baby boy is going to be a stud but who can resist bow ties and houndstooth print in such a tiny size. Irresistible!

The second part of Friday Favourites is what I have called Newborn Must Haves. This of course, is absolutely not true for everyone. You each have your own list of essentials that you feel make life easier with a newborn. My list was probably different when I was preparing for Hallie. In fact, I should do another series on that! You can find the original posts here for newborn essentials or even more fun, monthly favourites through the first year (almost anyways) here. I would love to do an updated version tailored to baby boys, or even comparing the two! What I was trying to say though is you can probably live without have of the recommended items these days and raise your baby perfectly fine. But where is the fun in that? I love enjoying cool baby things! When else am I going to in life? As usual, I would LOVE to hear your thoughts on what items you absolutely love for baby, and what you consider to be must haves for bringing up baby.. See the next post for all of this fun information!

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Baby Boy Swag:

Batman Sleepers – How cute are these?! They are from H&M though they are sold out online. I am going to check them out in-store ad fingers crossed they have a selection there! One of my rules for sleepers now is they must be zippered. At least for the first four months. Snaps are the worst, especially in the middle of the night or when you are dealing with a major explosion. I mean the ones that are like Zero Dark Thirty and you need a team to go in there with you. Zippers make sense. That is all on this topic.

Baby Boy Shoes – I love baby shoes. They honestly make my heart beat a little faster. If they are too cute then I get a little teary eyed – oh hello hormones! Even though babies don’t do any walking for many, many months, I can’t resist dressing them in cute shoes. We have a wedding to go to a few weeks after baby boy arrives. I think a cute slip-on houndstooth print pair will be perfect for the occasion. I also love these ones from Baby Gap. Patent leather?! Yes please!

Mama Bear & Baby Bear Matching Tees – Did I mention I love to matchy match dress with Hallie? Well at least coordinate our outfits. I love these t-shirts so that I can coordinate with baby boy too. Not to mention my undying affection for ‘heather grey’. T-shirts and denim shorts are likely to be my go-to mom outfit this summer anyways.

Dino Hoodies – these hoodies have spikes on the hood to help him look more dinosaur like. Need I say more?

Chambray One-Piece Romper – This is the perfect gentleman’s outfit. It is dressy enough that it could be worn to events but looks simple and light-weight, perfect for our warm summer weather. Relatively easy to put on baby as well. This could also be a runner up piece for the wedding in which he will make his debut appearance to many people. Gotta dress to impress the ladies!

Dressy Onesie with Bow Tie – this is the next contender for the wedding. I don’t think I need to justify it’s cuteness, plus it is on sale right now. Who am I kidding anyways. He will be wearing things like this non-stop, not just for weddings hah! I see a lot of bow ties in our future.

Like I mentioned above, it was a challenge to narrow down some favourites in this category. I am glad it was though! This means there are plenty of cute options out there and that I can continue my baby clothes obsession. Words that every husband wants to hear I am sure! Stay tuned for Part Two Friday Favourites: Must Haves!