1/31/14


Valentine's Day is coming up in a couple of more weeks, are your little ones ready to trade Valentine's with friends and classmates? 

There are so many options when it comes to giving Valentine's out on this special day. Most of the time, people are so busy they just pick up a box of Valentine's at their local store and have the kids fill out all the names on them for their friends. That's fun and something you can do with the kids but what about a DIY Valentine's Day this year with HP Canada!

A few weeks ago I told you all about my new HP PhotoSmart 7520 all-in-one printer and the amazing things it can do for orgainizng the home office with the help of Snapfish. Having found some great printables for me, I also found some great Valentine's cards for the kids!

Choose from different ideas like Valentine printables for both boys and girls, mini Valentine printables and cute Valentine's Day celebratory party sets! Printables are full, bold colour and are free to download and print!



We printed out the Zoo Friends, Better Together and Colour Me Woodland Valentine's, they printed out beautifully on our HP Photosmart! Bold and bright, ready to personalize for Valentine's Day! 





If you are crafty and looking for some Valentine's Day inspiration, HP Create has some fun DIY project ideas the whole family can enjoy! If your little ones are like mine and love making Valentine's Day crafts you can also save your kids Valentine's creations by scanning and saving them or printing them out to share with loved ones as an idea! 

Looking for creative Valentine's Day gifts for loved ones? Snapfish can help transform your favourite pictures into gorgeous photo gifts like personalized calendars, mugs, scrapbooks and much more! If you need something for someone in the office why not a memorable moment you caught on camera printed out on a nice coffee mug or desk calendar! There are tons of options to choose from with SnapFish by HP! 

Thank you HP Canada for inspiration for Valentine's Day 2014 with the HP PhotoSmart 7520 and Snapfish creations!

For more information about HP Canada and mentioned products please visit www.HP.ca. Chat about all things creative and follow along Twitter @HP using hashtags #ValentinesDay #HPfamilytime & #HPCreate!



Posted on behalf of HP Canada. Product supplied for review purposes. Comments and opinions on this blog are those of the author. 




1/30/14


Next week we are going to be starting a weekly series for the month of February, talking money and ways to save it. Life with a family can get expensive from everyday expenses to the things we want more than need. Often people find themselves having just enough in the budget to get by and maybe turning to credit for a little boost in buying. Credit ends up accumulating because unless the budget changes for the better, credit repayment isn't always there and off roll the problems with late payments or worse, ending up at the credit bureau with bad credit ratings. Sound familiar? I'm sure many, many people can relate to that example. It's one big vicious cycle if you don't know how to properly budget your money. Let's all take a challenge to make a change and learn how to use our money for the better and save at the same time. 

We are going to start the year off right by SMART spending and saving more. This February, P&G has challenged P&GMom bloggers with the Family Financial Challenge – a month long challenge inspired by personal finance expert Gail Vaz-Oxlade.

I have been a fan of Gail for the longest time, I love watching “Till Debt Do Us Part” and “Princess”. Her books are insightful and are full of great tips and advice. I also had the opportunity to hear her speak on a panel in 2011 and got to meet her briefly afterward, she is just great! You can learn so much from Gail’s simple yet professional tips on money and life management. I am super excited to have the chance to take this challenge for the month of February!

How it works:

Each week we are given a challenge to share ways our family saves money and makes smart financial decisions using Gail Vaz-Oxlade's tips, tricks and methods. I will be sharing blog posts, Instagram photos, tweets and more – learning new ways to manage and save our money featuring tips and tricks from Gail and great P&G products! 

Categories we will be looking at over the next four weeks will help all of us learn a new thing or two about family budgets and personal spending.

Week1: Cash, Cash, Cash

Week 2: Food

Week 3: Family Fun

Week 4: Clothes

Saving money isn’t rocket science; it’s about discipline and knowing how to make your money work for you.

Stay tuned via Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and other social media networks using hashtag #SavingMadeSimple for tips, tricks and pics as we embark on our journey to better savings! 

Take the challenge along with us and sign up for your own personal profile on www.mymoneymychoices.com

See you next week!

Posted in participation with the Family Financial Challenge by P&GMom Ambassador program. Perks and incentives are received as part of the program however opinions and comments on this blog are those of the author! 

1/29/14

Random acts of kindness are simple little gestures done out of the goodness of one's heart with no alterier motive or expectations in the background. When I hear about a random act of kindness, especially an anonymous one - it makes me see a glimpse of good in a world that can be so cold. 

Lately there has been a certain picture of a statue cirulating around the internet. This isn't just any statue, it's one from downtown Ottawa and he's wearing a scarf with a note attached, a note I hope someone read and followed. This note read "I am not lost! If you're stuck out in the cold, take this scarf to keep warm!"


A completely annonymous, random and full hearted - this is one of the nicest things I (and I think a lot of us here in Ottawa) have seen from complete strangers in a long time. This group of knitters did not ask for a reward or even recognition, they just went around randomly leaving warm scarves to those who may need them the most.  In this cold, this couldn't have been a better way to show you care about your community.

I have been on the receiving end of a random act of kindness when our youngest daughter was in the NICU Christmas time, 2012. I was awaiting good or bad news regarding her condition and every baby in the NICU that day (Christmas Eve) receieved a beautiful gift bag packed with things to make everyone in the family smile and have a little more of a Merry Christmas. It brings tears to my eyes still thinking about how much that small gesture meant to us and the thing is, we never found out who it was really from. We know initials and always have the memory. I had written a Thank You blog post back then, I hope that they saw it. 

I am happy to say someone found out who the hearts behind the scarves are! The inspirational and ever so brilliant 11 year old blogger, Hannah of Call Me Hannah, had the opportunity to sit down and interview these secret angels and find out the story behind the anonymous scarves.  Please visit Hannah's Blog to read her in-depth interview about the people and ideas behind this kindness in the cold!

Stay warm! :) 

1/28/14



Disney On Ice is making it's way across Ontario and will be in Ottawa at the Canadian Tire Center with Disney On Ice: 100 Years of Magic presented by Feld Entertainment! 

If you know me at all, you know my love of Disney and how Disney on Ice brings so many memories back from my own childhood, I am proud to be able to bring my own kids and you can too! 




Join the celebration as over 60 of Disney's unforgettable characters from 18 beloved family stories come to life with Disney On Ice 100 Years of Magic! You'll be captivated by the one and only Mickey Mouse, the irresistable Minnie Mouse, Goofy, Donald Duck, Jiminy Cricket, Pinocchio, and many of the Disney Princesses. Be thrilled by exciting moments from the Lion King, Mulan and Disney/Pixar's Finding Nemo, The Incredibles and Toy Story films in a skating spectacular filled with magical Disney moments you will remember forever as Disney On Ice celebrates 100 Years of Magic!





What: Disney On Ice Celebrates 100 Years of Magic

When: February 19th through February 23rd, 2014

Where: Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa Ontario

Tickets are on sale right now from $15 and up, click here for full ticket and show time information! Get 4 tickets for a weekday show for only $44.00 using special discount code MUM44! Get $4 off weekend show tickets using discount code MUM4 at checkout! 

*Discounts exclude Front Row, Rinkside, and VIP tickets. No double discounts. Additional Fees May Apply. Weekday is defined as Monday thru Thursday and Friday Matinee. Weekend is defined as Friday evening and Saturday and Sunday.*

For more information about this and other live shows please visit www.DisneyOnIce.com! Show some love and follow @DisneyOnIce via Twitter and chat using hashtag #DisneyOnIce

Win it!

Now is your chance to make some memories with your little ones and win a family pass (four tickets) to opening night February 19th at 7pm to celebrate with Disney On Ice 100 Years of Magic! 

Please fill in the entry form below for your chance to win! Must be a resident of Ottawa or willing to travel for the show. This giveaway is for TICKETS to the show ONLY. Please use a valid email address upon entry for prizing purposes. One entry per household, must be 18+ to participate.

GOOD LUCK!



Posted on behalf of Feld Entertainment and Disney On Ice. Tickets for mentioned show provided by Feld Entertainment. Opinions and comments on this blog are those of the author. 


1/27/14



As a social media enthusiast and Canadian blogger, news about the BConnected Conference couldn't have put a bigger smile on my face. Canada's first social media and networking conference geared toward mom and dad bloggers or anyone who wants to learn more about the blogging world, expand their knowledge and more, right here in our nations capital and my home city, Ottawa Ontario! 

BConnected Conference will take place Saturday April 12th and Sunday 13th, 2014 at the beautiful National Arts Center in downtown Ottawa!

Learn how to enhance your social media and blogging skills through various informative and fun sessions, mingle with brands and industry leaders, connect with other bloggers and like-minded individuals, grow your network and more!


I have attended a couple of conferences in the past and I can tell you even the newest of conferences can be the best experiences. Great sponsors, amazing speakers, insightful content and most of all supportive attendees is what makes a conference like BConnected what they are. 


BConnected Conference Keynote speaker
 and founder of Triberr Dino Dogan!

Check out the interactive sessions and awesome speakers! This is just the tip of the hive, my friends! BConnected will be offering attendees four components: 16 interactive sessions, six keynote speakers, an exhibitor’s hall as well as a social networking party. So, be sure to keep checking in as more amazing speakers and sponsors will be added within the next couple of weeks.

I am beyond thrilled to say not only will I be in attendance at the conference but also I am an Official BConnected Conference Ambassador! Through this ambassadorship I will be sharing information, insights and experiences about the conference here on the blog, Twitter and the AME Facebook Fan Page. 

I, along with the other fantastic ambassadors and BConnected team will be there to help any attendees, new or seasoned with what they may need. Have any questions? We'll B there for you. 


If you are a blogger and want to enhance every aspect of your social media and blogging life, take a look at the BConnected Conference 
website and get your ticket! Early bird tickets are still on sale until February 16th, 2014!




Giant Tiger is one of many great sponsors who will be at BConnected Conference!


Show some love by following @BConnectedConf on Twitter and liking the BConnected Conference Facebook page!

See you there! 
Win a pass and BConnected!
We know how fantastic BConnected Conference is going to be. If you are a blogger and want to join us for this fantastic two-day event, you are in luck! 

On behalf of all the BConnected Ambassadors, we are giving away a 2-Day Pass to BConnected Conference taking place Saturday, April 12th and Sunday April 13th, 2014 at the National Arts Center here in Ottawa! ($249 value!) :) 

Enter to Win your ticket to BConnected Conference by filling out the entry form below! 

Note: This giveaway is for the conference ticket ONLY, if you live out of Ottawa, it is your responsibility to make travel arrangements accordingly. Giveaway ends on February 10th, 2014.

Good Luck! 


Rules: Open Canadian residents 18 +. You have 48 hours to reply by email once you are notified as the winner. If you don’t, we will draw another entry. Prize is non-transferable. No substitution or cash equivalent of prizes is permitted. The selected winner must correctly answer a mathematical question in order to win the prize mentioned above.


Posted as part of my BConnected Ambassadorship. Perks and incentives are received as part of this affiliation however opinions and comments on this blog are honest and those of the author!

1/24/14



January has been the month of new beginnings, setting goals and trying our best to stick to them. One constant, ongoing goal I have had for the longest time is to try and stay organized, every year. I tend to do well for a little while but then things just seem to get out of hand.

HP can help keep things organized with the right tools like the HP Photosmart 7520 e-All-In-One Printer and printing supplies like ink cartridges and various paper products to get the job you need done.




The HP Photosmart 7520 All-In-One Printer is designed to produce lab-quality photos and colourful everyday documents from the comfort of your home. This wireless printer provides superb versatility and allows you to print, copy, scan to email, fax and access web content like an array of creative HP web apps on the 4.3" colour touch screen. The built-in ePrint app lets you print from your smart phone or tablet from virtually anywhere, no worrying when on the go!

The HP Photosmart 7520 was easy enough to set up, it's basic plug and play. All you need to do is set up the wifi, set up the HP ePrint app on your mobile device and of course install a new printer onto your network or computer. The hardest thing about the HP Photosmart is figuring out where to start in your organizing quest! 

Looking to organize all those photos you took over the holidays? Snapfish is HP's online design portal that offers an assortment of personalized photo gifts and creative ways to share your memories with loved ones. You can sign up *for free* and order professional quality prints from Snapfish or you can print them out yourself on your HP Photosmart. Having options makes it so much easier to really customize how you organize your cherished memories. 



You can also find more inspiration with HP Create, which offers unique and creative project ideas the whole family can enjoy like Children's Artwork Calendars and Custom Desktop Organizers! 

If you are like me and looking to do a bit of home office organizing, Snapfish also offers free downloadable and printable templates in bold, attractive designs and fun patterns like 2014 Calendars, To-Do Lists, Meal Planners, Family Chores Lists and so much more to help you get organized with the HP Creative Studio.

I took a look at the downloadable templates available on Snapfish, I wanted something for my mini-home office to help me keep things organized. I am one of those who will jot down just about everything on loose sheets of paper, on a note pad where it doesn't belong or on sticky notes strewn about. I do have a specific notebook for blog related ideas and another for appointments and family stuff but they tend to not be where I need them when I need them, thus the use of sticky notes commences. 



I thought it would be a great idea to print out a few weekly organizers and to do lists, they are so colourful too. Placed neatly in a folder they make a great DIY organizer instead of sticky notes!

Thank you to HP for introducing us to a new way to show our creativity and help you #OrganizeYourLife

Stay tuned in the next couple of weeks for a special Valentine's Day post featuring Snapfish! Follow along Twitter and chat about how you keep things organized using hashtags #OrganizeYourLife #HPfamilytime & #HPCreate!

For more information about HP and mentioned products please visit www.HP.ca

Posted on behalf of HP Canada. Complimentary product was supplied by HP Canada. Opinions and comments on this blog are those of the author. 




1/22/14


The past few days, Ottawa (and most of Ontario) has been experiencing a crazy deep freeze with temperatures as low as -40C. Yikes! That's cold enough for Polar Bears to want a jacket! Frostbite warnings and school cancellations due to extreme temperatures, am I the only one who feels our Canadian winters are getting colder each year?

One thing about the cold is that you must allow yourself ample time to get ready before going out. In the evenings before I settle down, I get the older two kids things organized so in the morning they can just grab, get dressed and we can go. Little Guy always needs help with his scarf, snowpants and jacket. He still can't figure out how to dress himself so the clothes actually stay on. Even in -30C weather K insists she doesn't "need" her sweater under her jacket only to walk outside and want to go back in and get it. You need layers my child, its not cool to be cold! ;-) 

I was solo parenting (usually hubby does bus pick up) so come afternoon it was still pretty cold and I had to get Baby M ready to go. It took me a good 10 minutes to get her snow suit with her hat, mitts and all on. She wanted none of it at first! She always protests being forced into suits, especially when she knows she has to be strapped into the stroller looking like the marshmallow man.

Not so much protesting the bundling up rather than protesting about being strapped in the stroller. She wants to go, go, go on her own. I managed to strap her in by getting her attention onto songs like "Itsy Bitsy Spider" and making up a song about it being cold and we have to dress warm (hey, almost 10 years at this parenting thing you have to be creative once in a while!), she likes music and it always works. She got upset with me when I was putting on my jacket, hat, boots and the whole shabang though (mommy's not fast enough!) but once we got outside feeling the temperature and a change in scenery changed her mind. 

My Blue-Eyed Baby M :) 

She calmed down under her blanket and was quiet as ever for the bus pick up. She seemed to enjoy watching her warm baby breath freeze as it hit the cold frigid winter air, it made her smile which made me smile.

A simple yet sweet, heartwarming moment on a cold and frigid day.



*Personal post. Not sponsored or endorsed in any way. Photo taken by the blog owner. No permissions granted to use this photo by others elsewhere, like the post? Use the share buttons. Thanks!*

1/20/14



Pampers is celebrating everything parenting through a new tumblr website "My Pampers Journey" where Pampers parents from celebrities to atheletes and fellow P&GMom bloggers share an inside look at life with our little ones. 

On this great new website you can read stories from Ben and Jessica Mulroney, as they chronicle their first year with baby Ivy. Tips on tuckering out and tucking in twin boys, to a survival guide fpr 3am feedings, this Canadian power couple share their secrets on MyPampersJourney.ca

I am proud to be among a group of fellow P&GMom bloggers who had the opportunity to share a parenting story on the website as well! Do you have a story to tell? Visit MyPampersJourney and find out how you can participate! :) 

Also, if you like great savings you'll want to check out the newest BrandSAVER savings available now through P&G. Up to $102 in savings on all your favourite products!

Have fun!


*Posted in participation with the P&GMom Program. Opinions and comments on this blog are my own.*

1/17/14

As a mom, healthy living is always a goal in our family. We are always looking for new ways to live healthier, happier lives. Finding a simple, yet effective way the entire family could benefit from to help our bodies, minds and overall well-being.

I am not new to natural health, although I have not really practiced it up until recently with my family, my mother used to always use tinctures, detoxes and other different herbal remedies to help what ailed her when I was younger. Learning more and more about it, now I think it will be something positive for my own family to benefit from. 


We have recently embarked on a new journey with Orange Naturals! For the next six months my family and I will be including Orange Naturals in our everyday and sharing our stories with all of you!


What is Orange Naturals?


Naturopathic Doctors, Adriana Restagno and Cecilia Ho developed Orange Naturals because they wanted to make it simpler and more affordable for families everywhere to experience the powerful health benefits of naturopathic medicine. 


Orange Naturals offer high-quality natural supplements for every age and stage through naturopathic products like nutrient dense shakes (ND Shakes) and tinctures. 


Our journey begins!


Orange Naturals sent over a generous kit to start off our journey to better health which included ND shakes in both flavours for women, men and kids as well as Calming, Cough & Cold and Digestive Tinctures for kids and Probiotic Powder for toddlers through teens. Also included in our package was a nifty Orange Naturals shaker to help us make our yummy shakes! 





ND Shakes: It's not for every body. Just your body. ND Shakes make it easy for everyone in my family to get their multivitamins, greens and fruits in one complete shake that is created for the age-stage of their lives. ND Shakes are a vegan blend of easy to digest protein, greens and superfruits plus a customized multivitamin specific to everyone's health needs. ND Shakes are available for women, men, teens and kids - in yummy chocolate and vanilla flavours. 


Very simple to make, you only need one cup of your favourite drink and some fruit if you want to give it a nice extra flavour. I enjoyed my first ND Shake plain Jane with milk to see what it was like, not bad but it was even better the second time as a chocolate-banana shake. Made with a little milk, ice, cut up bananas and of course two scoops of ND Shake. The ND Shake powder comes in a handy, resealable bag and comes with the scoop to measure what you need. The powder blended well using my handy new Orange Naturals shaker and made for a nice yummy shake. 





I can see ND Shakes becoming a thing of our every day mornings, something good to add to our morning smoothies. ND Shake mix can be used in other things besides smoothies and shakes that I need to try like baking into protein bars or making hot chocolate for the kids! 


The tinctures, which come in glass bottles, have me intrigued. Each bottle will have benefits for my kids:





Cough+Colds for kids is the first one I noticed, something we really need around this time of year when germs are ablaze at school. Combining the power of echinacea, thyme, licorice and chamomile this tincture is gentle for children to help fight off infections such as cough and cold. Thyme is a great antibacterial herb licorice can help clear congestion and chamomile is known to calm.  


Calm for kids helps restlessness, irritability and upset tummy's with a calming and soothing combination tincture. It contains chamomile and Linden which have been used for the longest time to help calm minds and relieve upset stomachs. Strong enough for adults to use but gentle enough for children to take. Calm promotes a relaxing sedative state with no harmful effects because like all Orange Naturals products, it's natural.


Digestive+Appetite for kids helps little ones sooth troubled tummy's or help with lack of appetite. Fussy eaters can be encouraged to eat and tummy spasms, bloating and gas can be eased and burping settled. Caraway Seed, Chamomile and Peppermint are the herbs that make up this great combination tincture. 


I'm also interested in learning more about the Probiotics for toddlers to teens as our journey continues with Orange Naturals, #NaturallyAtHome! 


You can learn more about Orange Naturals too!


Are you new to the world of natural health like we were? If you find it hard to understand or just want to learn more the Orange Naturals website makes it easy to finally bring natural health remedies into your home. 


You can also check out the Naturally At Home blog which is tailored to helping moms bring natural health into our homes! The blogs are written by two naturopathic doctors, a homeopath and a nutritionist - and yes, they have a mom's perspective! 


Also, don't forget to like the Orange Naturals facebook page. If you tweet follow @OrangeNaturals and join us on our journey using hashtag #NaturallyAtHome


Disclosure: I am part of the Orange Naturals Mom Ambassador Program and I received special perks as part of my affiliation with this group. The opinions on this blog are my own. 


1/13/14


We are already well into January, how many of us have set a goal or resolution to live a happier, healthier life this year? Raise your hands, ladies and gents. These lifestyle-change resolutions could be to lose weight, exercise more, eat better or other healthier lifestyle goals. The one thing all of these have in common is that they can be difficult and they all require willpower. 

We start our goals with good intentions, we say we can do it, we feel somewhat motivated and then it happens. That negative voice plays over when things start getting tough. The thing is, nobody said change is easy no matter what that change is. It is time to get rid of that negative voice that we have about our own self images that's holding us back and focus on positive energy! 

According to a recent survey on behalf of Kellogg's Special K, 97% of Canadians agree that having a positive attitude is better for helping achieve goals but 66% still admit to talking down about each others and their own image, that is so wrong. 

We are all built a certain way, bigger or smaller we are who we are. It is up to us to maintain a healthy, happy body by eating right and getting the right exercise. We need to kick the negative thoughts, kick the bad talk and encourage each other.

Kellogg's Special K encourages Canadians to live healthier, happier lives by offering an array of cereals and snacks like Special K Chocolaty Red Berries, Popcorn Chips and Granola Bars just to name a few. 

Learn more about how Kellogg's encourages Canadians, find customizable meal plans and weight management tips to help kick-start a positive and healthy weight management plan available at myspecialk.ca


Posted by AME on behalf of Kellogg's who sent me complimentary product to try with my family. Opinions and comments are those of the author. 

1/10/14

Every year my hubby and I look for new and fun ways to update our home decor. Lately we have been talking about the bedroom. Every time I make my bed I think to myself "this needs to change". Right now our room is a mix and match of browns, dark and light. It's nice but the bedding has to be updated. We have had the same duvet cover on our bed for the past six years. You know when you get tired of looking at the same colours/patterns over and over. Plus, over time with use the material is just not the same. I want my silky softness back. 

We have been inspiration hunting more or less, checking around on different websites, shops etc for ideas that would make our bedroom more relaxing, more welcoming and more us. I am not one for floral or anything bright and distracting, I want my room to look elegant and relaxing.

Frette has has everything to make almost any room in your house updated, chic and elegant, including the bedroom.

I like how you can search the various menus for just what you are looking for be it pillows, shams or an entire bedroom style. I would probably go for something like this for a new bed look:



Picture it with a light shade of beige on the walls with white accent and add in some light brown throw rugs instead of the tile floor. The bedding is chic yet not too loud with patterns, we are pretty plain and simple people. I do think that lamp is super awesome, I wish my room was bigger!

Knowing hubby, he likes things a little lighter and I can see him going for something more like this: 


Our headboard does not look like that, although that one is pretty amazing! I think I would go with an off-white sheet set instead of the grey/white shown here. White always seems to get the best of me, even when I'm sleeping. 

These are just a couple of examples of the simple style we would be looking for. We have a lot more research to do but happy to have found some inspiration to get this job done through Frette.com.

1/8/14

Have you noticed Google slowly taking over the internet? It started with Google Plus, now we have hangouts and recently discovered Communities. I have a Google Plus page for AME (I'm still not 100% sure how the whole circles system works), no hangouts yet but decided maybe a community would be a nice start for my readers to get updates, chat parenting and whatever else. Let's see where we can bring this! 



Motherhood Experiences - a place for moms (and dads) to come chat parenting or not, bring your own coffee. :) 

If you want in on the community, click here and request an invite. Don't worry, I only set it up this way to avoid trolls and spammers trying to ruin our fun! :) I will accept my friends, readers and so forth with no troubles. :)

If you havent' already, don't forget to like the A Motherhood Experience Facebook Fan page too which is updated regularly!

1/6/14



Sitting here clutching my warm coffee, hoping the bitter chill of the morning doesn't hit my bones. The new winter jacket I got for Christmas should help, I hope. I do not like winter. I like snow around the holidays for the look but otherwise I could do without it. I don't like having to bundle up, I don't like having to go outside. I want to stay in my bed and clutch my coffee all winter, there's only what only two or three more months left.

I don't ski, I don't skate and I don't toboggan. My kids do though and as much as I loath the season, the mom in me has to embrace it. The smiles on my kids faces when fresh snow blankets our yard makes me smile. The simple joy of them wanting to go out and jump in the stuff is priceless. I think that is the part I like best about winter.

When I was little we did all the things my kids love to do and the cold never bothered us. It could have been from the hand-knit hats, mitts and scarf sets we wore or maybe it was just forgetting about the temperature and focusing on what was important, having winter fun. Plus we got to come in the warm house to some yummy hot chocolate and cartoons on TV. 

I do admit though once we forget about the chill, snow angels are super fun to make. We like to have snowman making contests, I think that is a great idea for our next big sticky snowfall. 

The community rink opened up just before Christmas, the cold snap we had helped quicken the process. It was so cold I showed the kids that "turn hot water into snow or steam by throwing it up in -30 temperatures" trick and it worked like a charm. They were amazed. Last year and the year before it wasn't nearly as cold I think because the rink was up late and down early. 

This year they created a bigger, second rink beside the one with the side guards for those who don't play hockey and want to enjoy some local skating. We have not been yet because we spent the entire Christmas break sick with a bad cold but we intend to take the kids a few times at least before winters end. 

We like taking the kids to a great sliding hill we have been taking our oldest to every winter since she was capable of bracing herself on a sled. It's fun for them, work for us having to drag the sled (and them) back up the big hill but everyone comes home happy and ready for a good sleep. It's only a bus ride away and there is usually a pretty good group of kids and parents there, it's a place for families to get out and enjoy their city. 

Speaking of our city, Winterlude is opening up in Ottawa starting January 31st, I would like to make it this year. Winterlude is Canadian, it's been a celebration every year since I can remember. There are always lots of fun activities to do during this festival from skating on the canal to checking out local exhibits, learn skiing and skating tips, meet the Ice Hogs and more. I've always loved the ice sculptures and don't forget the Beaver Tails!

So even if we have to bundle up, get rosy cheeks and see our breaths at least we will be out and having fun as a family. That's what counts, the memories you have made and continue to make. 

I may not like winter but really, winter might not be so bad.

1/1/14


We said "Goodbye" to 2013 without a big celebration, everything we need and everyone we love under one roof was celebration enough for us. Not to mention we were all sick during the holiday season. Fighting off a vicious bug which attacked our family starting just before Christmas. It's New Year's Day and we all still have stuffy noses. 

Not really the way I wanted to ring in the new year. There was no real countdown to midnight, hubby and I were so exhausted from everything we actually were in bed watching a movie by midnight. We know how to party like rock stars, don't we? 


I woke up and welcomed 2014 with a positive attitude, despite being sick. A fresh page in my life long novel to start anew. A chance to put the past behind us and move on to better and brighter things. Another chance to grow, to learn and to succeed. 

To me a new year is more than making up silly resolutions I probably won't stick to for more than a couple of months. It's about setting attainable goals and working toward achieving them whether they be personal goals, career goals, financial goals, it doesn't matter as long as we stick by our initial plan from the get go.

I have my own personal goals, goals for my family and goals for my blogging life. With a little hard work and a lot of determination, it can be done or at the least we can say we tried. 

Here's to a year of health, wealth and happiness all around! Happy New Year 2014!