Christmas wish list: Daddy

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

I started to collect gift ideas for Mark on my Etsy favourites page and the first thing that caught my eye was this super cozy sweat shirt from kupukupu apparel (they have them for women too!). I added some accessories to go with it. Ok I know the bow tie doesn't match, but it was too cute not to include.

Find these items and more in my Christmas Wish List for Daddy on Etsy here (affiliate link).

Have you started shopping yet?

Mini Adventure: Roundhouse Park

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

After we left the aquarium on Friday, we skipped over across the street to Roundhouse Park: a dream for any three-year-old. The foggy skyline was the perfect back drop for the old steam engines. Next time though I think we'll stick around for a beer.


Monday, November 25, 2013

So all of a sudden this boy is three. Although, I have to be honest it's felt like he's been three for quite some time. But there it is. A whole three years have gone by since that very long day (and night!) I spent in the hospital.

Friday we spent the morning downtown at the new aquarium. It was pretty nice and Leo loved seeing everything. There's a play area in the centre and I think he was most interested in making his way there the whole time. He said his favourite were the jellyfish which I have to agree with (although the shark tank was a very close second). Super cool.

On Saturday we had a small family birthday party. Leo was very specific that he wanted a John Deere party so I got to work. All week he would talk about the tractors he was going to get and he was not disappointed. Now he has two really cool big tractors to call his own, plus two I added to the cake. Oh and his grandmother got him a zamboni which he is equally excited about. 

If you follow me on Instagram you may have seen a few of the party themed pics, but here's a photo little recap:

We spent Sunday doing nothing (I think I was in my PJs until 3) which was the perfect ending to the weekend in my books.

Well that's it! I hope you had a great weekend too wherever you are! xo

Let's be adventurers

Monday, November 18, 2013

Today my best friend Carol and I met at Union Station in Toronto to bring the kids on the GO Train and have some fun in the PATH. It was Carol's idea: she wanted to bring Leo out for a cookie for his birthday (he's going to be three on Friday yowsers!). I thought it was a great idea because Leo loves trains and I knew he'd love the ride.

It was my first solo trip with the kids like this though and I was a bit nervous. I couldn't bring the stroller because our GO station doesn't have an elevator - at least I haven't seen one - and I had to be smart about what I packed since I'd be bringing a small bag. Oh and Leo doesn't wear a diaper now. Where were the washrooms?!

It's easy to ask yourself all of these questions and more and say SCREW IT. I'm not going. It's easier to stay home, which I'm sure I've done before more than a few times.

But I'm trying to be more adventurous. And Carol is the gal to be adventurous with.

Ok I have to be honest, Carol wasn't always the super adventurous type. I remember traveling with her in Europe years ago and taking forever to find a place to eat because she didn't like what was on any menu and she wasn't really interested in trying something new.

But then she had kids.

Carol is one of the most adventurous people I know now. She'll take her kids anywhere and make it work. That's the key here folks: she'll make it work. It's not always easy (she's got three young kids!). It's not always fun. But she'll never look back and regret not doing something because it was easier just to stay home.

Carol's inspiring me to be more like this. I have a long way to go. I'm up-tight sometimes. I like things a certain way. I don't do particularly well with change. I don't like mess.

But I don't want all of these things to stop me from experiencing things with my kids whether or not they remember them. These are our experiences too as parents.

They make us stronger.

You know what? Today was crazy. The kids ran all over the place. They zipped in and out of stores. They ran around bankers on their cell phones. They pushed buttons that stopped escalators.

But they were smiling and laughing the whole time they were doing it. Isn't that part of being a kid?

So let's collectively get off our asses and GO. By ourselves (bring your kids of course!). Let's Do It.

We'll all be better for it.

Latest Etsy Loves: Style Faves

Monday, November 18, 2013

I have a Style favourites board* on Etsy for all the things I would love to add to my wardrobe. With the exception of the colour beads up front, it seems I'm all about warm, gold and caramel tones right now.

Here are a some of my favourites lately.

via Back Bay Pottery

via amarilo

via ArtemisLeatherware 

via ShopClementine

via bookhouathome

via Mmim
Check 'em all out on my Style favourites board here.

*Affiliate Links are used in this post

Get to know your neighbours by starting a book club

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

I'm over at the YummyMummyClub this week talking about getting to know your neighbours by joining or starting a book club. Have a read and start a book club (there's wine and treats!).

The Lucy Top (by Shwin Designs)

Monday, November 11, 2013

I'm sure I wrote somewhere that I wanted to get sewing again and when I found this sweet top pattern from Shwin Designs I bought it right away. I was going to use it for the Tonic Living fabric contest but I realized I didn't have enough fabric so I put a hold on it until last week. I'm not really sure how or why I got started, but I soon found myself upstairs going through my fabric trying to decide what I could use. 

I have a tonne of denim so I chose some of that for one side of the top and some Joel Dewberry antler damask in Celadon I had for the other side.

I love how this turned out. I love the damask with the giant antlers and bits of read and the denim helps to ground it a bit if I want Mila to wear something toned-down*.

Some notes: Over all this pattern was super easy to follow but I didn't love the photos that came with it. I'm a super visual person and I found myself lost on the sleeves. In fact I totally messed them up and I had to hand-stitch the bottom of the arm holes to make it work. Oh well. I'll have to look at it again or contact the Shwins to see where I went wrong for the next one.

Also I was going to put buttons on the front like the pattern photo, but I really love how clean it looks without them so I'll be putting a little snap on the inside of each side.

*I laugh when I say "toned-down" in the same sentence as "Mila" because she's developing quite the active personality. There's a reason why I chose to photograph this on my bench instead of Mila modelling it. She rarely sits still and when I did try to put it on her she started flailing this way and that and started crying :).

Hope y'all have a great week!

Easy and delicious immune boosting blueberry muffins (Vegan + Gluten Free)

Friday, November 08, 2013

I remember in high school my best friend Carol worked in the bakery in the local grocery store. She was always making muffins. Big yummy muffins. The muffins she made back then were, I'm sure, not very good for us.

Fast-forward 20 years (ack has it been that long?) and she's still making muffins. But this time they're good for us and they taste damn good too.

Carol put this recipe for muffins on Facebook the other day and I decided to make them with Leo. When I asked where the recipe came from, she said: "It's mine!"I had a feeling it was. So with her permission, I give you her Easy and delicious immune-boosting* blueberry muffins.

Make them. They rock.


Makes 12

Pre-heat oven to 400ºF

1 cup brown rice flour
1 cup chickpea flour
1/4 cup tapioca flour
1 tbsp psyllium husk
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 1/4 cup blueberries
3/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
1 1/2 cups almond milk

Mix dry ingredients, add in wet ingredients, mix and bake in a muffin pan for 20-25 minutes. (See easy!)

Notes: Use the coconut oil if you have it. If you don't, go get some. It really brings these muffins up a notch and is a huge part of the immune-booster. I didn't have enough maple syrup so I used a combo 
of syrup, honey and brown rice syrup and they were equally delicious.

*So what makes these muffins immune-boosting anyway?
Coconut oil and blueberries have been said to boost immunes and help fight against cold and flu. Read more here and here.

That's it! Happy Friday and have a great weekend eating these up!

Mila's photobook

Thursday, November 07, 2013

A while back I bought another groupon for a photobook and this time I used it for Mila's first year. I love having these around the house and to have for years to come, especially because I rarely print photos anymore. This book is smaller than Leo's which I didn't know until I got it in the mail, but the quality over all is still great and I'm pretty happy with it.

The front and back covers (as well as the photos below) are from our photo shoot with Nataal. I was so happy to have these photos in time for the book.

Hope you're having a great week so far!

Quick and dirty: step stool cover

Monday, November 04, 2013

This isn't the prettiest post, but it made me happy so I thought I'd share it. Leo needed a step stool for his potty training adventures (he's fully trained during the day - underwear and all yay!) and I was going to get this one from Ikea but the colour I wanted wasn't in stock when I was there. Mark brought this really nice one in from the garage and we made do with that until we got the Ikea one.

Well guess what? I'm cheap and the practical side of me said why bother spending money on a stool when I have this one. I'll just recover it. So that's what I did.

I picked something out of my fabric stash and got to work. 

Honestly this is not my best work. There are puckers and folds, but it's a huge improvement from the paint stained blue stool we had before and I saved a few bucks. And now Leo can go potty and wash his hands all by his lonesome. Win-win I say!
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