Spring has officially sprung and I couldn’t be more excited. I’m loving the longer days, the bluer skies, and of course the sunshine…now only if the warmer temps would kick in (I know you know what I’m talking about). Honestly and all kidding aside there’s just something about the spring that makes me feel alive, happy and energized.
One thing that I look forward to doing with the arrival of spring is getting back outside after a long cold winter and finally being able to open up the windows to get some fresh air in the house. You know what else springtime means? Spring cleaning of course! Purging things we no longer need, organizing our messy piles of everything and anything that accumulated over the lazy months and getting into areas of the house that haven’t been touched in what seems like forever. It’s a lot of work and it can be a pain in the ass but once you have it done you can’t help but be in a better mood and feel great about your newly cleaned and tidy space.
If you’re anything like me you’re probably thinking, well…that’s all fine and dandy but what if I hate cleaning? Well, here’s a little secret for you…cleaning, isn’t on favourite things to do either, I know…shocker. Unfortunately the reality is that it needs to be done no matter how much it sucks. So, I’m here to figure this out with you. As a Mamma of 3 (ages 5, 3, and 1) you know how crazy and messy things can get so I’m going to share with you some tips, tricks and advice to help you keep things clean and smelling good and all while keeping costs down.
1. Tackle a bit at a time…
When you have little ones running around you need to be realistic and cleaning the house from top to bottom with them around will only stress you out and most likely won’t get your far. Create a schedule so you know that Tuesdays for example are bathroom days while Friday nights are reserved for vacuuming and washing floors (let’s get real we’re parents now and we’ll be home because hitting up the bar just ain’t happening anymore haha) and don’t forget to clean as you go (wash your dishes after you’re done eating, wipe down and tidy yup the kitchen once you’re done cooking, etc).
2. Make it a family effort…
You’re most likely not the only person living in your home right? Which means others are contributing to the mess and so it’s time everyone rolls up their sleeves and pitches in to help out. My husband absolutely hates cleaning the bathrooms so our deal is that I will do that while he takes care of things outside of our home. He’s also obsessed with loading the dishwasher so who am I to argue with him (it’s all yours babe 😉 haha). As for the kids you might think well they’re small, what could they possibly do to help? Let me tell you, there’s plenty! Have them do little things like tidy up their toys after they are done playing, putting their dirty clothes in the hamper, dishes in the sink after meals, etc. These little tasks will not only teach them responsibility but they will also love helping out Mamma and Papa.
3. Have fun…
We all know how exciting and thrilling it is to clean right? I’m clearing joking because we all know it’s not so why not do something about it. Open up the windows, let the fresh air come in and crank the radio. Music will always put a smile on your face and get you moving. Before you know it your dreaded task of cleaning will be a distance memory.
4. Make sure your tools are ready to go…
Before you load clothes into the washer, run the dishwasher or bust out the vacuum cleaner you may want to do some simple maintenance on them. Take the time to run a clean cycle on your washer/dishwasher and of course empty out and clean your vacuum cleaner. Over time things can get yucky and smelly and you don’t want that. Do a google search or check pinterest for some great ways to clean these appliances and trust me you’ll thank me down the road. This is a total must for every spring cleaning!
5. Get your shopping list ready…
Last but not least you need to make sure you have the right supplies on hand. It can get overwhelming when you hit the cleaning aisle at the store…so many products and items that’s it’s easy to drop money on things you don’t need so let’s make it simple. Let’s get you in and out with what you need and without spending extra money. Get yourself a mop (I love microfibre ones that allow you to remove the pad for washing purposes), a bucket, some sponges, rubber gloves, cleaning cloths (good quality cotton or microfibre are both great), and most importantly a great multi-surface cleaner. To get you in the spring cleaning zone may I suggest going with one of my new faves which is Pine-Sol’s NEWEST scent…Spring Blossom. I absolutely love it! It’s powerful enough to cut through grease, grime and dirt and it’s perfect for cleaning your entire home and making it smell amazing. Who doesn’t love the scent of a spring bouquet of Jasmine, Magnolia and Orange Blossom? Thought so 😉 ! This Pine-Sol multi surface cleaner can be used in the kitchen, bathroom and everywhere in between which means one product instead of 5…your bank account will thank you for it.
So there you have it….my tips, tricks and advice for getting you started on spring cleaning. There’s no better way to welcome the season with a clean slate and the spring blossom scent. Also don’t forget to check out the Pine-Sol website for more info and some fantastic How-Tos on killing those nasty flu germs, getting stubborn fabric stains out, tackling backyard toys to getting your shine stainless steel and much, much more!
Let me start by saying that I love my kids more than life itself. They are my life, my world, my everything! Now what I’m about to say may come as a shock to maybe 1 or 2 of you but to the majority, I’m probably preaching to the choir. People may judge…well fuck who am I kidding, of course they will because it’s the norm these days but it’s a good thing that I don’t give a shit because I’m gonna say it anyways.
I need a day, just 1 day, a fuckin day to myself, for ME, with no one around! No kids, no husband, NO ONE! As Mammas we carry these kids around for 40 weeks which is 10 months not 9 (who ever came up with the 9 month shit was probably a man), deliver them either vaginally or via c-section and let’s be honest here…neither tickle or are a walk in the park, then the minute they are born, we are with them pretty much 24/7. Our lives change gears, it’s now all about them not us, it’s about making sacrifices and doing what we need to do to make sure they are happy and most of all healthy. We go through breastfeeding or trying to and again painful as fuck in the beginning and draining like no man could ever imagine. We worry about them every waking hour and even when we sleep. At night, the slightest change in their breath (which we an hear from down the hall and 3 rooms away) has us jumping out of bed and running to their side to make sure they are ok. We pick them up when they fall, kiss their boo boo’s and do our best to raise them with a good head on their shoulders. When they are sick we want them to feel better and it kills us inside knowing that sometimes shit is beyond our control and there isn’t much we can do besides hold their hands and give them tons of hugs, kisses and let them know that Mamma is right there with them. It’s a pretty hard job being a Mamma, it’s a selfless job! It’s a job that doesn’t come with pay, vacation days or sick days! Sick days? What the fuck are sick days?! Sick days don’t exist for us. We do however get rewarded in many other ways…through hugs and kisses and the I love you’s that are said in their little voices and of course seeing their faces light up and smiles that appear when we are the first thing that they see in the morning.
Now with all of that said I’m tried, I’m exhausted and I’m not saying I don’t wanna be a Mamma anymore. I’m just saying I need a day off. A day where I can go pee by myself without my entourage, a day where I can make and eat the meals I make (warm) without little people pulling at my legs or fighting in the background. A day where I can go without getting pee’d on, shit on, barfed on or have their snot and dirty mouths rubbed all over me. A day where I can sleep in, take a shower without rushing, pick up that book I bought months ago that I haven’t been able to crack open yet…a day where I don’t have to run and hide in the bathroom just so I can have 3 minutes of peace and quiet (which by the way doesn’t work cuz the little shits always find you).
The pressures and day to day shit that we Mammas feel is pretty insane and men (well with the exception of the few who are home raising their kids) have NO FUCKIN’ CLUE what it’s like. It doesn’t matter if you are a stay at home Mamma, work from home Mamma (like me), or career Mamma, everything falls on us. The kids get sick at daycare or school we’re the first ones there. Doctor appointments…it’s us, extra curricular activities…yup, us too. We’re usually the ones preparing meals too and although it may not be anything fancy it’s food and it’s warm and they’re fed. My house is a mess. I don’t know whether I’m coming or going and worst of all, us Mammas are made to feel guilty (gotta love the Mamma guilt) for wanting some solo time.
Tomorrow is December 1st and while all the Mammas are getting ready for the holiday season I’m here prepping for my class tomorrow, grading assignments and of course getting distracted with facebook. To be honest I didn’t even realize that tomorrow is the 1st of the month, UNTILLLL I scrolled through my facebook newsfeed.
Ok seriously, am I the only Mamma out there that doesn’t buy her kids advent calendars or have the elves already in position and with a “HEY, I’M BACK!” note for the kids? I’m looking around my house and I don’t even have one single Christmas item out, let alone the Christmas Tree set up. I do have the Christmas lights outside but let’s get real that was THE HUSBAND’s doing not mine.
Does this make me a bad Mamma? Should I stop typing to go find the elves, write a note and call THE HUSBAND to stop at Shoppers on the way home from hockey to grab whatever advent calendars he can find? Is this what the kick off to the holiday season has become? Advent calendars…chocolates, toys or books? Elves…boy or girl or both? What about Elf clothes? Do we dress them up? Which outfit? And OMG how should we position them? Is all this shit really going to make a difference? Sure it’s fun, we have Elves too but do I go all ape shit crazy over them and follow a pinterest calendar to have them in cool and different positions each day? No, not really. There are days where I even forget to move the stupid things. Yes, OMG I admitted it…write me a ticket haha.
So, tell me am I a bad Mamma for being so chill about this stuff and just taking it easy and or is it perfectly fine? Please tell me I’m not alone 😉 lol.
Getting ready this morning and as I rummaged through my jewelry box I came across one of my favourite necklaces that I haven’t worn in ages. My personalized “PINA” necklace and so I picked it up and thought perfect I’m going to put this one. I then remembered that today…October 11th is International Day Of The Girl…perfect day and reason to wear it. You may think well what does this piece of jewelry have to do with the fact that today is International Day Of The Girl but it does you see because although it may just be a personalized necklace to many, to me it’s a symbol of who I am and it tells a story….my story…the story of a GIRL!
It goes a little like this…
I am a daughter
a little sister
a sister in-law
a good friend
a best friend
a business owner
a music lover
a shoulder to cry on
a person to lean on
a hard worker
a strong independent woman
A GIRL…I AM PINA…I AM MINE!
So today celebrate YOU and celebrate the GIRLS around you because GIRLS are leaders, GIRLS make a difference and GIRLS’ rights matter. Let’s make it count ❤️.
It doesn’t really matter how old you are, what kind of music you like or where in Canada you live because chances are, is that you know the music of The Tragically Hip and are familiar with the poetic lyrics of frontman Gord Downie. The Hip is as Canadian as hockey and maple syrup and so when we learned about Gord Downie’s glioblastoma diagnoses…a incurable form of brain cancer we all couldn’t help but feel some sort of emotion.
Gord, 52, started treatment back in December and has undergone surgery, chemotherapy and radiation. Even with all that going on the band decided that it was important to say farewell to their fans and announced a final tour…The Man Machine Poem Tour.
They kicked things off on July 22nd in Victoria, BC and hit up cities across our great country for a 15 show tour. Tickets went on sale and everyone went nuts trying to score a seat to see one of their most beloved bands play for the last time. It was pure mayhem and disappointment to many when they turned up empty handed. At that point, the band decided to team up with the CBC to broadcast their FINAL show in Kingston, Ontario to make sure everyone could take part…leave no one behind! The CBC broadcasted and streamed the concert commercial free on CBC Television, CBC Radio One, CBC Radio 2, CBC’s YouTube channels, and cbcmusic.ca.
This past Saturday we came together as a nation to celebrate something that unites us all as Canadians…the music of iconic Canadian rock band The Tragically Hip and of course Gord Downie. Kingston’s Rogers K-Rock Centre was rammed with a sold out show while others gathered with friends to watch from their homes, bars, town squares, and cottages. 11.7 million people watched the show…that’s 1/3 of the country and more than 900,000 people streamed it from around the world…insanely amazing!
The concert was set to kick off at 8:30pm EST and I was ready or as ready as can be for what I knew was going to be an emotional next few hours. I had front row seats on my sofa as I flipped the channel over to the CBC. I along with many was greeted by the great Ron MacLean who was broadcasting live from the Olympics in Rio along side of Team Canada. Ron said a few words and then threw it to the Hip in Kingston. The first thing we saw was the band getting ready to hit the stage and Gord giving a kiss to each and every one of his bandmates. My heart sunk knowing that this was it! I’m not a huge Hip fan, I never was but I do respect the band a great deal and enjoy their music. Hell, this is a band who taught us a crap load about the history of the great country we live in through their songs. According to a @stats_canada tweet they said that “46% of Canadians have learned more Canadian history from Tragically Hip songs than from school”. Bottom line is that we are Canadian and the Hip is a part of who we are…some would even say that they are a part of our DNA.
It was time! The guys took to the stage, the crowd went nuts and they kicked off the set with “50 Mission Cap”. As they played, so many thoughts ran through my head. Thinking about what the band was feeling, thinking about those watching live at the K-Rock Centre, the fans who wanted so badly to be there but couldn’t, Gord’s friends and his family (his wife Laura and their 4 children) and most of all Gord himself. It made me emotional and I felt for all of them.
As the show went on they played all our favourites and the songs that put the Hip on the map and made them who they are today. We heard “Courage”, “My Music At Work”, “Twist My Arm”, “Bobcaygeon”, “New Orleans Is Sinking”, “Grace, Too” (which brought us all to tears when we saw Gord wipe away his tears) and they closed it off with “Ahead By A Century” which they truly are!
It was a show that we will never forget, one that will go down in history and not only will it have people talking about it for years to come but also got the attention of many already including the guys from Pearl Jam who played Wrigley Stadium that same night. Lead singer Eddie Vedder took a moment during their show to acknowledge Gord and the Hip, send some love their way and dedicated a song to them. When you see stuff like this happening you realize just how much love and respect people have for The Tragically Hip.
Another person who took part in Saturday night’s farewell was our very own Prime Minster Justin Trudeau. It was great seeing our leader there amongst the many supporting Gord and the guys. Gord took a moment to acknowledge Trudeau and say “Thank you to the Prime Minister for coming to our show, it really means a lot to all of us,”. The two met prior to show and snapped a few very touching photos together. Trudeau also later tweeted “On behalf of Canadians, I thank Gord Downie and the Hip for their decades of service to Canadian music. Forever in our hearts and playlists.”.
They rocked it! Plain and simple! They came out, gave it their all and celebrated 30 years of The Tragically Hip. 30 years of great music! 30 years of amazing Canadian rock! It was amazing to see the crowd dance, smile, shed some tears and of course singing along with Gord.
I don’t think I will ever forget this concert for as long as I live and Gord’s words last night will stay with me forever, especially when he said “Thanks for listening in the back. Thanks for listening, period. Have a nice life.”.
A big THANK YOU to The Tragically Hip and an even bigger THANK YOU to Gord! It takes a lot of courage and strength to do what you did and it means a lot to all of us xoxo
Earlier today an AMBER ALERT was issued for a 3 month old baby…a 3 month old! I was in the kitchen at the time with the TV on in the background when I heard the dreadful siren sound of an Amber Alert being issued. I immediately ran over to find out what it was about. I then jumped online to post the Amber Alert and got on the phone with family members who were on the road to tell them to keep an eye out. Sick to my stomach doesn’t even begin to describe how I felt at that exact moment. We’re talking about a helpless child who was ripped away from his family and with people who are capable of God knows what!
The stories I was reading online said that the father had stepped away from his car (that he had running) with his baby in it when it was stolen. Yes, you hear of people leaving babies and children unattended in the car but something seemed off…leaving a baby alone in a running car? As you can imagine people started to have a field day with this online and calling the father every name in the book and asking what kind of parent would do such a thing! It angered me because all these people speaking their minds have no idea of what really happened! They were just passing judgement and were very quick to do it.
Thankfully the child was found and is safe but the posts on social media still continue and I find it rather interesting. Interesting because who are we to pass judgement onto others? Do we know the story? Do we know exactly what happened? People assume can anything they want to but WE DON’T KNOW . Are you a saint? Do you live a perfect life? You’ve never done anything wrong? I highly doubt that because none of us are saints or live perfect lives in which we’ve never faulted. Don’t get me wrong I’m not saying that what he did was right by any means, all I’m saying is that two wrongs here don’t make a right. Could he have done things differently? Yes, probably but again who are we to judge without knowing the facts and the full story?
Everyone nowadays is all about don’t judge, don’t assume, etc but then when something like this happens they seem to forget what they preach. Maybe we can all stop passing judgement (without knowing the full story) and instead be thankful that there was a happy ending for this sweet baby.
It’s a new year and with that comes new and exciting things like the return of Valco Baby products to Canada and we couldn’t be more excited!
All the way from Australia, this family owned and operated business of over 30 years is back after a short hiatus here in Canada. In the past 30 years they’ve worked hard at what they know best; strollers and stroller accessories. I am super excited about this and am now trying to find reasons to sell my existing stroller so I can get one of these 😉 . Not only are they beautiful looking but the functionality is out of this world.
So what can we expect from Valco Baby Canada in 2016? Only the chicest strollers to hit the Canadian market! One of the features I’m loving about these strollers is their “Tailormade” series which adds a touch of luxury to their innovative and functional designs. All models appearing on the Canadian scene this spring will be decked out in Tailor-made fabrics and these models include the Tailormade Snap 4, Snap Duo and Snap Ultra Strollers.
Later on in the year, Valco Baby Canada will also be introducing the Tri Mode X Series that comes in a double and single seat model and with a compatible toddler’s seat. These strollers are what I like to call your all season friendly strollers! Take them on vacation to the beach with you, zip around the city or trek through the snow with ease.
Let me fill you in on these Valco Baby strollers and find out why they’re so awesome!
SNAP 4 TAILORMADE:
This light weight stroller (14lbs) is a great single stroller with tons of amazing features. It has a fully reclining seat with built-in support and adjustable footrests, new Tilt-Lock brake system & simple Valco Baby Clean Fold™ technology.
If you’re an on the go type of person, then this compact stroller is worth checking out! Comfort and maneuverability is what it’s all about.
SNAP DUO TAILORMADE:
Have you ever had to shop for a double stroller? Not much fun is it?! Trust me I know!
One thing that was big for me when I was shopping around 2 years ago, was size and weight. The Valco Baby Snap Duo has both and is the lightest full featured double stroller on the market today.
My favourite thing about this stroller is that it offers a one handed clean fold and convenient carry strap to give you the ultimate in double stroller convenience.
SNAP ULTRA TAILORMADE:
Expecting a baby and looking for a stroller that will accommodate your child from newborn and up to 45lbs? Well this is it! Use the luxe foot muff to get a bassinet feel for your wee little one and get that beautiful pram style look. As they get older have them sit up and explore the world in front of them, in comfort and style
Like the other Valco Baby strollers you will love this lightweight ride and easy fold down feature that doesn’t require you to remove the seat.
TRI MODE X TAILORMADE:
If you are out every day with your little one, no matter if the sun is shining, the rain is coming down or you’re caught in a snow blizzard with slushy and slippery conditions, the Tri Mode X will endure it all and hands down is the stroller for you!
One stroller is all you need as this one will grow with your little one from newborn to toddler and you’ll love the compact fold. Another great feature is the toddler seat which is available and will turn this single stroller into a fantastic double!
Check out the video below and see why this is Valco Baby’ssecond most requested stroller by Canadian consumers.
TRI MODE DUO X TAILORMADE:
Much like the Tri Mode X you’ll love the Duo for your little duo’s. We absolutely love this double stroller and all it’s features. Not only will this sturdy yet versatile all terrain stroller get you through all kinds of weather but it looks great and is super comfortable for your little one.
It’s hard enough trekking around with your little ones but it’s absolutely no fun when one or both are tired and not comfortable. With the Tri Mode X Duo, you’ll love the separate seats, canopies with extra coverage and options like sun screen to get some light in or extend them fully for a little privacy for nap time. Talking about nap time, we love that this stroller has reclining seats, an adjustable footrest and like the Tri Mode X has a super compact fold for a rugged model. That’s a huge bonus in our books!
Do you have a third child? No problem! Just add the twin toddler seat or add on the hitch hiker standing platform and be on your way. One feature we really love is that it’s easy to maneuver and only 29 inches wide which is perfect for anywhere you might go.
As you can see we can expect a lot of great things coming in 2016 from Valco Baby Canada! The only problem is choosing just one!
Christmas is not about the buying expensive gifts or how many gifts you have under your tree. The true meaning of Christmas is giving, sharing, showing compassion, and caring for one another. It could be something as simple as smile and hello to a stranger, or even taking time out of your busy life to help someone in need.
Every year around this time, I look forward to watching the West Jet Christmas video and year after year, it warms my heart. This to me, is what Christmas is all about!
Watch and see for yourself…
I also found this one from Tim Hortons and again, it’s just amazing
Kudos to you West Jet and Tim Hortons. You have reminded us what the true meaning of Christmas is!
December has arrived and before we know it, Christmas will be here! And you know how time flies when you’re busy dealing with the hustle and bustle of the holiday season! Shopping, planning, pictures with the big guy, Christmas cards, letters to Santa and the list goes on and on. Thankfully, Canada Post has a few ways to help you out and alleviate some of that stress.
We all get so busy that it’s easy to forget about things. Mailing out Christmas cards and parcels on time, fall under that category. But lucky for us, Canada Post has put together this awesome chart (see below) to help you get your mail to its destination on time. And for those of you looking to send Holiday cards overseas, you better head out to your local post office so you don’t miss today’s deadline date!
Another great thing that Canada Post does every year at this time, is letters to Santa. This is a personal favourite of mine, as it’s always fun to sit down with the kids and write Santa a personal letter. The Canada Post website even offers free letterhead you can print out for your little one(s). The best part is that each letter Santa receives (which is over a million letters) is read and everyone who writes him gets a letter back. All you need to do is address your letter to…
No postage stamp is need, just make sure it goes out no later than December 16th in order to get a reply from Santa. And don’t forget to include your return address 😉
So now you know and you’re all set for another fab Holiday Season! Have fun wrapping, packing, writing and mailing .
It’s crunch time, the clock’s are ticking and before you know it the new school year will be here. I’m a newbie at this as my little Sammy Baby isn’t so little anymore, she’ll be starting JK and I’m pretty much what you call a HOT MESS haha. It’s exciting, fun, sad and most of all scary…but probably more for me than her.
As I sit here with my to do list of things I need to buy, prepare and get organized for, one thing on the top of my list is LUNCH! OMG, what do I do? What should I pack? Will she eat at school? I won’t lie, I’m totally lost and freaked out when it comes to this particular topic. So, like any good Mamma out there I started to ask friends who have gone through this already and looked online for some ideas and tips that might help. The one thing that I kept hearing, seeing and reading was “MAKE IT FUN!” which totally makes sense to me. Who wouldn’t be happy and want to eat a fun lunch right?! LOL
So what makes a lunch (and let’s throw snacks into the mix too) FUN?
Get your little one involved ~ give them choices, ask them want they want and let them help you make it
Make it bite size because as you know finger foods always taste better
Use cookie cutters to make different shapes
Put it on a stick and make kabobs with veggies, fruits, cheeses, and deli meats
Make it colourful
Have variety because the same old thing gets boring and old
Another thing that will help you and alleviate stress is planning ahead of time. Here’s a great little cheat sheet that you can print out to help you come up with a great lunch ideas for your little one (I might just use it to plan my lunches too haha)…
But it doesn’t end there…fun lunches and snacks also need fun packaging which leads me to my awesome discovery and new favourite thing! Samantha says she loves them more than me but we’ll save that debate for a different day 😉 . I’m talking about Glad’s new Disney character themed Zipper Snack and Sandwich Bags! Honestly these things are so cute and the minute your little ones see them they will be in love! They come in different Disney themes like Frozen, Cars and Toy Story so there’s something for the little ladies and men in our lives.
(Grape Tomato & Cherry Bocconcini Kabobs)
We’ve already started to use them for snacks and lunches when we’re out and about and these are fantastic. The best part is that both my girls Samantha (4) and Liliana (2) like trying new things because of these bags. As you can imagine Frozen is pretty popular with my little ladies and so we like to play games and think of different things that Elsa, Anna, Krisoff and Olaf like to eat and we try to come up with food ideas based on them. Remember Disney films are full of adventure so shouldn’t their lunchbox be too? So next time you’re out shopping, look out for these awesome new Glad Disney themed bags and plan some yummy lunch time fun with your little one.