We are what feels like just days away from back to school time at our house. We have been preparing our oldest for her first day back to school with everything she needs and I have been thinking about ideas for lunches including home made (nut-free) snacks I could send along with her for her first day in grade 2!

Typically I do tend to buy prepackaged snacks for lunches during the average school year, they are easier to throw in the lunch bag. They can be a bit pricy having to buy everything peanut and nut-free as K's school is a peanut and nut-free school. Besides, having something home made or better yet, something the kids helped make on their lunch will help make that first day lunch even more special! There's nothing my kids enjoy more than helping me out when it comes to making something yummy, after all they get to be the taste testers and we all know that's the best part!

Pencils, paper...popcorn?!? No, popcorn is not only for the movie theaters, send kids back to school with the tools they need, including a delicious, satisfying snack that is also a great source of fibre and whole grains, popcorn! It's easy to make and make things with, it's healthy and kids love it.

Asking the kids to help out when it comes to preparing lunches is a great way to help get them excited about getting back to the regular school routine - which of course includes making the next day's lunch. It also makes it a little easier on us parents, having the extra hand once in a while reduces the "what to pack" panic.

A good routine to start is preparing snacks for the week on a Sunday night and let the kids choose what to pack in their own lunches. I also find when our daughter chooses the foods she brings to school with her, the more likely she is to eat up all her lunch and not bring home left overs of what she didn't like that I may have packed for her.

An easy snack tip: Pop extra popcorn the night before and pre-package it in individual snack containers (to keep it tasting that just-popped freshness). For a quick hint of flavour, put the popcorn in a large bowl and sprinkle taco seasoning or parmesan cheese to taste, shake until gently coated.

Another great idea if you have extra time to spare is the Orville Redenbacher's Power Crunch Bars. We all know that Orville Redenbacher has been a family known name for over 40 years. variety of popcorn flavours in both microwavable and kettle corn popcorn. Orville Redenbacher's Power Crunch Bars are a simple to prepare snack that will score straight A's with the kids. Check out the recipe below!

 Orville's Power Crunch Bars

Serves: 24 servings (1 bar each)
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Baking Time: 10-12 minutes

  • 1 mini bag (31 g each) Orville Redenbacher's® Smart Pop!® 100 Calorie Buttery Flavour
  • Microwave Popcorn
  • 1/2 Teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 Cup quick-cooking rolled oats
  • 3/4 Cup dried cranberries
  • 1 Teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 Cup margarine, softened
  • 3/4 Cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 *serving (1/3 sec spray) PAM® Original No-Stick Cooking Spray
  • 1/4 Teaspoon salt 
  • 1/2 Teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 Cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon water

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Spray 15x10-inch jelly roll pan with cooking spray. Combine oats, flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt in medium bowl; set aside.
  2. Prepare popcorn according to package directions. Remove any unpopped kernels; set aside.
  3. Combine brown sugar and margarine in large bowl, using electric mixer on high speed.  Add water and vanilla; beat until light and fluffy.  Gradually add flour mixture and blend well. Turn mixer on low speed; add cranberries.
  4. Cover hands with plastic gloves or sandwich size plastic bags; spray with cooking spray. Mix popcorn into dough. Spread mixture into prepared pan.  Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until golden brown.
  5. Let cool before cutting into 24 bars.  Store in tightly sealed container.

For more great recipes the whole family will love visit www.orville.com Happy first day back everyone! What are some of your favourite creations using popcorn?


*This post was written by A Motherhood Experience on behalf of Orville Redenbacher. We received a sample product for review purposes. Recipe and information provided by representatives of Orville Redenbacher. All opinions and comments are honest and always our own.*


This was the weekend I had been waiting all of August for. Our daughter turned seven years old and I had been planning her party for the past few weeks - having it themed with her favourite collectible toys: Hasbro Littlest Pet Shop™!

Our initial plan had been to invite some of her friends over, mix in a little family and have ourselves a party but unfortunately people called back sick or couldn't make the date for one reason or another. It was a little disappointing but this was for my little girl, we were having a party either way.

Just having her grandparents there to celebrate with us was good enough, besides everyone has just been getting over a cold too so it was better to keep it smaller. We decided to keep the activities and loot we had planned for our upcoming play date with good friends of ours, the kids will enjoy it more with a less excited atmosphere :) Plus, wait until they see the loot we have for them! Follow-up post to come on that!

Back to the birthday, our little girl was thrilled having people over to celebrate her birthday either way. We had a delicious "chocolate explosion" cake, it was so yummy! For gifts she got school clothes , writing books (which she loves, even outside of school) and a new back pack from grandma and grandpa. She's all set for grade two!

She was expecting more school clothes from mom and dad until we made her close her eyes and revealed her big gift! Littlest Pet Shop Walkables and Littlest Pet Shop Walkables Magic Motion Tree House play set!
We have always been LPS fans in this house ever since K was introduced to them by an old friend of ours whose daughter at the time collected them, she had so many K would always ask to play with them when we went over until we finally got her a few of her own.

Have you seen the new LPS Walkables? They are so cute, they look like your typical Littlest Pet Shop toy but when you press their button, they wiggle and walk! They had everyone smiling, even grown-ups had fun helping K take them out of their boxes and set them up in the play set. K says she loves them all but her favourite is the little Seal, it is pretty cute! The Magic Motion Tree house is really cool, it's interactive and allows your child to use their imagination during play. It  comes with a Littlest Pet Shop Chipmunk and accessories like acorns, a little bed and a wagon (if you have children younger than 3 years old in your house make sure to keep all small parts out of reach)! The pets can zoom around on three levels, take a ride on the swing, help each other collect acorns from the acorn shoot and take a nap in the hammock! There are so many things a young imagination can come up with!

Our girl was delighted by her new LPS! The best part came after the cake, the presents and our guests went home. I was invited to a mini play date in K's room before bed.Toys like these always bring an excellent opportunity for Mom and Daughter time, maybe it was the
perfect gift after all! Happy birthday to my beautiful girl!

You can check out more Littlest Pet Shop stuff at www.hasbro.ca or on the Toys R Us website!

*This post was written by A Motherhood Experience on behalf of Hasbro Littlest Pet Shop™. We received product for our party. All opinions and comments are honest and always our own.*


Do you or your child own an iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch?  If you answered yes, you have to check out Ruckus Media's HUGE back to school app sale!

From August 26th through Labour Day weekend until September 7th all 15 fantastic Ruckus Media learning app titles are on sale through iTunes for only 0.99 cents! You can get fantastic titles like Chuck and Friends - Friends for the long haul, A Present for Milo, Spot the Dot and Andrew Answers among many more, for a fraction of what they are normally sold for.

We all can agree that kids apps can help keep the kids occupied on a weekend road trip! Each Ruckus Media app features distinctive interactive elements that allow children of all ages to experience the story through an array of sensory driven activities.

Head on over to iTunes and check out the Ruckus Media Library of children's entertainment, with this sale - you won't be disappointed!


*This post was written by A Motherhood Experience on behalf of Ruckus Media. No compensation was received for this post. All opinions are honest and always our own.*
I'm no expert when it comes to painting nails or anything like that. I don't even go to the salon and get my nails done. I have actually had them done in the past with false nails and the experience was only good for a couple of days before they started ripping off and hurting my natural nails. To me it wasted my money and made my real nails look terrible, it took a while for them to grow back to their normal state. For some false nails might work but for this stay at home mom, forget it. Since then I have gone back to the old nail file, buff and polish. Giving myself a mini-manicure every couple of weeks, if you will.

My daughter has always liked to mimic me. As any little girl she wants to do all the lady things that mom does. As she turns seven, she too enjoys wearing nail polish, pretty colours on the tips of her small fingers - with rules of course. She is young yes, but if its just when she gets dressed up or wants to have a make-over day at home that's fine. I wouldn't make it an everyday habit, send her to school with it on or anything like that. She's a girlie, girl what can I say?

The only problem we both have with this is the type of nail polish she's allowed to wear. I know typically nail polish contains toxins (my husband always complains when I put on nail polish because it stinks up the house) that aren't necessarily all the healthy for our little girl to be sporting on her lovely nails so I purchase cheaper "kid-friendly" nail polish which she complains peels off and doesn't last past the evening bath.

In my search for new colours for myself and a type of nail polish I could share with my daughter, I came across Nail Polish Canada. We were super happy when they agreed to have us review some of their bold and beautiful colours.

About Nail Polish Canada:

Nail Polish Canada is a Canadian Online store that focuses on helping you find the perfect polish and nail treatments. They claim to be obsessed, nail polish fanatics (to say the least). They understand most of their customers also share their love of nail polish. This is why they work so hard to find the best polish in Canada.

Nail Polish Canada carries many popular brands including Essie, China Glaze, CND and their newest addition, Soulstice Spa. They do all the work so when it comes to choosing your perfect colour, it's as easy as a click away.

We were happy to try out a few colours from the Soulstice Spa Collection. Soulstice Spa is vegan, cruelty-free (verified by PETA) & free of the toxins dibutyl phthalate, formaldehyde and toluene. The Soulstice Spa nail colours have been tested at Nail Polish Canada, they found them to be long lasting and beautiful.

www.nailpolishcanada.com Soulstice
In all my nail polish wearing years I have not used a non-chemical nail polish on myself so it was interesting to see the difference between Nail Polish Canada's Soulstice Spa Collection and your typical, from the beauty aisle nail polish.

We chose three rather bold and daring colours: Montreal, Geneva and Troy. The shipping was fast (did I mention it's free shipping on purchases over $29?). The first thing I noticed was the smell, or lack there of. They don't smell strong like other nail polishes. The polishes are easy to apply, not too liquidy and not too thick. You only need about two coats to get the pure colour of the polish to stand out. My daughter really liked Montreal as purple is her favourite colour (one of mine too)! We did kind of a mix and match manicure to try them out. I used Geneva on my fingers and Montreal on my toes while my little girl had the opposite colours.

I have been wearing my nail polish for about a day and a half now, doing everything from typing to housecleaning to dishes, taking care of kids and dealing with pets. The polish did not chip easily or fade colour (I've had it happen before within hours of putting on nail polish). Overall I can say I am very satisfied with this product. The price is a little bit more than what I typically pay at local stores (they go for $8.00 a bottle and up) but then again this nail polish is vegan and chemical free, safer for my daughter and myself.

I would love to learn how to do designs on nails, maybe next time we are out we can look for decorative nail stickers or something for our next mommy-daughter manicure evening. With all the colours Nail Polish Canada has who knows what our next selection could be!

Head on over to www.NailPolishCanada.com to check out their entire selection of funky and fabulous Nail Polish!

*Posted on behalf of Nail Polish Canada. We received product samples for review purposes. All opinions are honest and always our own.*


CafePress has recently launched a new line of flip flops for the whole family, yeah we know, summer is almost over and the weather isn't very sunny the past few days but that doesn't mean you have to stop wearing flip flops!

Flip flops are the bees-knees when it comes to summer footwear. Whether you are lounging at home or out on the town, there are so many styles who can resist owning at least one pair!

To celebrate their love of flip flops, CafePress is having an exclusive Flash sale on their website! For today ONLY *until 12am PST* you can get 20% off CafePress Custom Flip Flops! Get yourself a couple of pairs for next season or if you dare, to finish off the summer!

Not only can you give your feet some breathing space with flip flops but you can also choose or create your own design that will give your feet that extra pop or pizazz!  CafePress has hundreds of great custom prints to choose from, there is definitely something there for everyone!

Head on over to www.cafepress.com and use the coupon code "FLIPTOIT" at check out to walk off with some great end of summer savings!


*This post was written by A Motherhood Experience on behalf of CafePress. No compensation was received. All opinions are honest and always my own*


I like Food Basics. The stores are big, the products are priced decent and there is a location within walking distance to me. What I don't like, is how ignorant some of the staff are at our local store. I know, I could file a complaint but why waste my time and theirs, unless they fire everyone and restaff the rude ones, I doubt it would change very much. Why don't I shop somewhere else? Well, I don't have a car for starters so I'm kind of limited to keeping it local and I LIKE Food Basics. Also, you wouldn't want to bus with two kids and a bunch of groceries, the bus is bad enough as it is - we won't get into that right now though you have read about my personal experience on the city bus.

What happened that put this foul taste in my mouth about Food Basics was the ignorance I have received on more than one occasion, including last weekend. It was Saturday, a busy day at Food Basics where it seems every family decides to come out and do their groceries (okay so that part is beyond the stores control but oh my goodness the people!). It's bad enough getting attitude, looks, scoffs and whatnot's from surrounding shoppers but to have the floor staff be completely oblivious is too much.

We shop with our stroller. Some would probably say "Well, don't bring it in the store." or something judgey like that. We on the other hand rely on this stroller to cart both our son and our groceries from the store to our home and into our fridge to feed our family. You get the point, I need it - period. As much of a hassle I feel like carting that thing around the store I try my best to stay out of peoples way. I wouldn't want to be inconvenienced by someone else's big stroller in my way and I hate when I get in the way. Not intentionally and if I am in the way, I'd appreciate people having the common courtesy to let me know. Don't try to shove by me and huff or roll your eyes, I'm concentrating on what food my kids need for the week just like you or maybe distracted by one of them acting up in the store, I'm sure it's happened to you before. Have patience.

But this story isn't about the customers, we all know that the world is a cold place and it's more often than not you get a scoff rather than a smile from people. This story is about the oblivious staff the store employs.

I parked the stroller (with our son in it and a basket of groceries on top) on the side of the main isle, hoping he would be out of the way so I could skip over and take a peek at the ice cream that was on sale. Hubby and I decide on two kinds and take them over to the stroller. As we are getting ready to go to another area a giant skid full of boxes of cookies is coming at the stroller! We both yelled "WATCH OUT" as Hubby quickly backed up the stroller. The skid hit the front tire before the idiot realized we were yelling at him. Boxes of cookies came tumbling down, luckily they hit the floor and not my son. This guy was purely not paying attention to where he was pushing a giant skid full of inventory in a thickly populated grocery store.

We walked away, just for that I didn't help him pick up any of those boxes that fell. Instead we made comments about his lack of apology for almost running us over.

That was that, I was ready to just pay for our stuff and get the heck out of there before I lost my cool. We took a spot in line at the cash and boy was it ever a line. There were two ladies in front of us, combined they had about six children under the age of 10 with them and a new born baby. There were two men behind us who obviously didn't believe in personal space because they kept bashing me in the heels with their cart!

The baby was crying and the children were climbing on things, touching things, yelling and completely out of control. One of them tried grabbing D's cup out of his stroller, you'd think the mom or aunt or whoever it was would say something. While all this is going on an employee of the store has the nerve to step OVER the front end of my stroller instead of going around behind the people who stood behind me (there was plenty of space) not once, but TWICE. Come on, seriously? You'll make me move my already heavy stroller so your skinny butt doesn't have to go around? Rude.

It felt like some kind of over populated zoo-daycare or something. We finally got out of there in one piece. Maybe I'm just over tired or maybe it was the way I was raised, I don't know but I'm finding it difficult to understand how some people simply do not have any common sense or common courtesy toward others. I'm happy I don't have to shop there every day, I think I would go crazy.

Think I'll take a lesson in Food Basics from this experience, never shop there on a Saturday.


*This is not a sponsored post. The mentioned store is referenced for story purposes only and is in no way affiliated with A Motherhood Experience or our partners. All opinions are honest and always my own*


Many of you may have noticed I have been tweeting about preparing for K's 7th birthday party next weekend. You see, every year I try to plan something that will make her just glow and it never goes as planned. Sure, she always has a good time and gets almost what she wants for her special day and the memories are made just the same but I would really like it if for just once I plan a nice party for her and things go the way I envision them.

This year I had an epiphany. An idea so great I have been having a really, really hard time keeping it to myself. I think I have told DH 100 times about my big plan! I am going to be doing a birthday party recap post (including a surprise for you too!) next week so I won't get into detail about what my plan exactly is but I can tell you it's been going great planning it and so far, everything is going smoothly (knock on wood).

Her party is going to have a specific theme, something she loves and something that is fun for her. What's a birthday party without it being all about you? Even the guests (under 5 feet tall) will get a surprise to take home in their loot bags.

We got everything we need for the actual party - decorations, balloons, loot bags and loot. A special friend helped us out with our party favours and a few surprise gifts for the birthday girl (I'm excited to let you all in on that soon too)  and I am about to send out some evites tonight to everyone who Kylie wanted at her birthday celebration this year. We hope everyone can make it, it'll make it all the more special for her. After all this is what a birthday is about, celebrating the birthday girl with loved ones.

Now all we need is disposable plates, cups, utensils, cake, snack foods and beverages for the party itself but those can be bought the day before the party - no big deal.

The best part about all this is she is expecting the same lame birthdays mom usually throws for her. Consisting of family coming over, chit chatting, having cake and opening presents. Woo, fun stuff. Not this year, oh no, she will remember this birthday for something more than that.

I figure she's only a kid once, she deserves to have a memorable birthday party. Hopefully one of many to come - if things go smoothly. Cross your fingers for me!


Don't Miss Out -- Pampers Kandoo coupons will be in this Sunday's paper. On August 21st, Pampers Kandoo will feature an introductory $1.00 off coupon good for any Kandoo soap, shampoo, body wash or hand sanitizer as well as a $0.50 off coupon good for any package of Flushable Wipes. Find the coupons in the SmartSource insert in select US papers.

What a great way to try something new and stock up on products you already love!

Don't forget to like Kandoo on Facebook and Follow Kandoo on Twitter for the latest updates!

*This post was written in participation with the Pampers Kandoo Blogger programs. Information provided by Pampers Kandoo. No compensation was received. All opinions are honest and those of A Motherhood Experience*

Back to school means back to packing lunches and one of the important parts of this is packing safe and healthy lunches. With a full day between snacks, lunch time, after school and late nights at the office for mom or dad, parents need to keep on the go solutions in mind and invest in quality lunch gear to make sure their family eats right and stays hydrated through their busy day at school or work.

Our school is very eco-friendly, they encourage parents to send food in reusable containers and reusable lunch bags instead of plastic wrap and paper bags. I completely agree, it has been years since I have seen a paper lunch bag in our house. We have used a variety of cooler bags, insulated lunch bags, food and beverage containers especially since K started Kindergarten where she had to bring an afternoon snack. Most of the time we would buy a cheaper brand having it rip, leak and just cause problems and cost more money than anything else having to replace the lunch bag and/or containers half way through the school year. We should have turned to Thermos for all our school day needs.

Thermos has been a family brand from before I can remember, we had Thermos plastic lunch boxes and matching Thermos insulated beverage containers growing up. My set was pink and had Strawberry Shortcake on it. They have always been the way to send lunches to school without having to worry about food becoming warm or drinks leaking all over the rest of the lunch.

This year send kids back to school in style with Thermos brand's new line of insulated travel containers! Thermos has a wide range of containers such as Funtainer Food Jars, Funtainer Straw Bottles and soft lunch boxes for younger kids; Hydration bottles, Travel tumblers and Fashion Lunch totes for teens while parents will enjoy lunch Duffle’s, Insulated Hydration bottles and Vacuum insulated food containers with bowl and spoon. Check out the entire Thermos back to school line at www.thermosbrand.ca

Our friends at Thermos sent us over a Soft Lunch bag and Funtainer Straw Bottle to check out from their new back to school line. K was thrilled that they sent over a matching Barbie set for her to enjoy for grade 2 this year.

The bag is a little smaller than what we thought it would be but we can work around this by getting smaller containers than what we have. K had a fairly big lunch bag and used it for two school years in a row before it finally tore. We try to be as eco-friendly as possible when it comes to sending lunches and that includes using sandwich boxes and snack containers to save on waste and reuse them.

We have used FUNtainer Straw Bottles in the past and they were all the rave, the one we had before was pink with a funky flower pattern on it. Never leaked, always kept K's drinks cold and could be refilled with water to finish her day when she was finished her snack juice from her lunch. The only problem we had with this particular item was at the time K was in Kindergarten and she was a straw biter. The straw, being made of soft rubber can easily be ripped and torn by kids like K who liked to chew on them. The old one we had came with an extra straw but it saw the same fate as the first one. Just a little warning for those of you who also have straw-chewers at home. The straw on the newer one seems to be made of a more durable soft plastic and now that K is older, she doesn't chew on straws anymore especially one on a new Barbie Thermos!

As usual, we are very happy with the quality of our new Thermos brand lunch items. K can't wait to start school in a few short weeks especially now with her new lunch bag and matching Thermos. Our little guy will be starting Junior Kindergarten next year and we already know what kind of lunch kit we are going to look for when it's his turn to take the big yellow bus, Thermos of course!

About Thermos Brand Soft Lunch Bags:

  • Made with 100% PVC-free with PEVA lining
  • Superior quality closed cell polyethylene foam insulation keeps food fresh
  • Comfortable padded carrying handle
  • Durable, easy-clean fabric
  • Available in licensed and non licensed designs including Disney Cars, Disney Fairies, Barbie and Boho Paisley
  • These can be purchased at most major retailers across Canada for $9.99

About Thermos Brand FUNtainer Straw Bottles:

  • Keeps drinks cold for up to 12 hours thanks to Thermos vacuum insulation technology
  • Made from premium stainless steel and BPA free materials
  • Hygienic push button lid with pop-straw makes for easy sipping
  • Available in non-licensed and licensed designs including Barbie and Cars
  • Capacity - 355 ml
  • These can be purchased at most major retailers across Canada for $17.99

*This post was published by A Motherhood Experience on behalf of ThermosBrand.ca. We received product samples for review purposes which does not reflect our overall satisfaction of the product in review. All opinions expressed are honest and always those of A Motherhood Experience*


We had quite the interesting afternoon one day last week. What brings this story up is just simply seeing how disrespectful kids can be toward their parents these days when we go out to the store shopping or even at the local park. The sad part is its not only parents or teachers who are seeing this disrespect and rudeness. Apparenlty it's complete strangers as well, let me tell you what happened.

We decided to take a little family outing (all the way across the street) to the local park. The kids love going to the park. Our ritual usually begins with swimming and then once the kids had enough or the pool closes we head off to the park behind the community center. I've mentioned our park several times along the way. It's our park, the one we always go to. The park where hubby grew up and where our kids are growing up. It's a nice little park and always has kids in it but unfortunately they aren't always the nice ones.

We had fun at the pool, K ran into a couple of her little friends of hers and D had fun playing in the water with hubby. D seems to have lost his fear for water, yay!

After swimming, we dried the kids off and took them over to the park for some slide and swing time. D is getting so good at climbing up the play structure, it scares me when he heads over to the bigger one though he still needs help with that one. Again, K ran into a friend of hers from school. It starts, the oldest off with a friend chit chatting while mom and dad play with her little brother. The girls played until it was time for her friend to leave.

Once her friend left I noticed K sitting alone on the swings, swaying back and forth. She looked a bit sad so I gathered our bag, puddle jumper and whatever else they threw onto the ground and joined her. Dh stayed on the little kid side and continued pushing D on the swings there.

K said she was having trouble getting her swing to go so, seeing the park was empty except for us I sat on the swing next to her and began showing her how it works. Let me tell you, I had fun too. It's been over 20 years since I have been on a swing honestly, it was fun but I still get that turney stomach.

Upon our swinging lesson I noticed a young boy dressed in black with greasy looking hair walk by. I glaced up from looking at K and with a stink-eye look the boy mutters "What you looking at F---ing B---h". He said WHAT?!?

My jaw dropped and my stomach turned, this boy couldn't have been older than 10 years old. I said "Excuse me, young man? Is there something you would like to say to me?" he kept his stink-eye glare and kept on walking, muttering more profanities at me. Dh came to see what my problem was and I told him what had just happened, the boy still in the park. Dh is a strong believer in respecting adults, especially in a child as young as this one.

Dh followed the boy home to have a chat with his parents about that nasty mouth of his. I stayed back at the park to finish the visit with the kids. The boy knew what he did, he kept looking back as dh followed behind him saying he was "really sorry". Yeah, I bet  he was sorry. He immidiately ran into his house and his mother came out to see what was going on. Turns out Dh and his mother know eachother from a long time ago. What an impression that boy made on us!

She tried to explain that her son acts out because he is bullied and dh reminded her to keep an eye on him because sometimes the bullied end up the bullies in the end. It can begin with something as simple as disrespecting an adult.

If it was my kid I would be embarrassed at the thought of them speaking to an adult let alone a complete stranger with such repulsiveness at any age. It was uncalled for, I hadn't even said a word to the boy, talk about issues. Whatever his problem is, lets hope he gets help for that.

K was as apalled as I was, she said "That disgusting, rude boy ruined our swing time!". There's always tomorrow.

I'm not saying  my kids are perfect, K has her moments of rudeness but I don't tolerate it. There are consequences for disrespect in our house. I wish others would see it the same way but everybody has their own version of parenting.

Note to self: Next time we are at the park, do not look around.

*This post was written based on a true story. All opinions are honest and those of A Motherhood Experience*


Summer may not be over yet but it’s coming close and time to think about heading back to school. Getting the supplies ready, buying new school clothes and getting back into routine once again for a new school year.

Back to school also means the kids will be in contact with many things that can bring a proliferation of viruses and bacteria into the family home and make everybody sick. To defend yourself and your family against these bacteria, we need to do everything possible to make sure our kids are educated about proper hygiene.

The Public Health Agency of Canada recommends effective hand washing as follows:
  •  Wet hands and apply soap
  • Scrub hands and wrists up to the elbows thoroughly for 20 seconds. This includes finger nails and between fingers.
  •  Rinse hands under warm water and dry with a paper towel or a clean hand towel.
  •  Shut off the water using the towel
The drying is step is particularly important. Did you know wet hands can transmit up to 60,440 bacteria compared to 200 when dry? That means hands that are poorly washed and dried are the main transmitters of bacteria. In fact, the bacteria that remain on the hands migrates to other surfaces like door handles, desks, telephones, keyboards or anything else you touch. They can live on a surface from 20 minutes to 2 hours or more.

To minimize the risk of becoming contaminated with bacteria and germs, Cascades introduces Defensia, a brand new intelligent antibacterial hand towel.

These are intelligent because the antibacterial effect optimizes hand hygiene for 30 minutes by reducing the amount of residual bacteria that can remain on hands after washing, unlike current alcohol-based hand sanitizers and soaps. It does this through a unique gradual release process developed by Cascades.

Cascades Antibacterial Hand Towels are Safe, Odourless and non-irritating. They are manufactured according to the best environmental practices and made with 100% recycled fibres. They are recyclable, compostable and biodegradable.

We were sent a sample pack of Cascades Antibacterial Hand Towels to try out for ourselves. Use them just like regular hand towels, following the hand washing guidelines above. When you dry your hands with the antibacterial hand towels the contact with water releases the antibacterial ingredient onto your hands. Almost instantly, it reduces the bacteria left on your hands and produces an ongoing antibacterial effect for 30 minutes.

We put the hand towels to the test by washing our hands with soap and water and drying them with both a regular clean hand towel and a Cascades Antibacterial Hand Towel. Compared to the regular towel the antibacterial hand towel gave our hands a cleaner, softer feeling. I do find the paper towels to be a bit thin for ones you dry your hands with, adults need about two or three to get our hands dry.

Overall these are a handy idea to have around the house or offer up to the classroom in place of facial tissues or regular paper towels. Just make sure to specify to everyone that they are not paper towels to wipe up messes! ;)

Cascades Antibacterial Hand Towels can be purchased at Walmart, London Drugs and starting in September, Proxim, Jean Coutu and Metro.

Check out Cascades full line of enviro friendly products on their website.

*This is not a sponsored post. We did receive a sample of the mentioned product to review at our own discretion, this does not reflect our overall satisfaction of the product or information provided by the product company. All other opinions expressed are honest and those of A Motherhood Experience*
Blissdom Canada '11 has been our main focus as far as conferences go here at A Motherhood Experience. I have never been to a conference before, it will be my first time this fall. But, as you know there are of course many more conferences to attend this year. Blogher '11 was held in San Diego last weekend and now there's She'sConnected.

ShesConnected Conference brings influential digital women, moms, business women, social media voices and brands together under one roof for some mingling, networking and educational sessions for a day and a half in Toronto, Ontario. The conference takes place this year September 29th-30th.

The difference with this conference is that it is sponsored by some major names and it's invite only. Members of the She's Connected website have the opportunity to sign up and apply for a spot at the conference. There is still time to apply so why not, go take a shot you never know!

I decided, it couldn't hurt as I am a member of the ShesConnected community website, to apply. I did not think I would be chosen, there are hundreds of us in this field who are dreaming of going to something like this - as someone once said to me (and I agree) women are our worst critics, as a blogger I know there have been times I've said "Oh there's better out there, they will hire someone else" only to turn around and see a light at the end of the tunnel.

Earlier this week I noticed people excitedly announcing and congratulating some of the early bird winners of the ShesConnected Conference passes. It's so exciting to see people, bloggers and friends you follow online get these opportunities, as much as I would love them I'm always happy for those who get them too!

So, Tuesday afternoon I check my Twitter feed as usual and there is a surprise sitting in my mention feed from @SCConference congratulating me on being an early bird chosen to attend the conference! I was ecstatic all day long and the worst part is that DH (who also works at home lately) was having an awful day and I couldn't tell him until later on in the evening. Try holding news like that in from your spouse you tell everything to for that long!

He was totally supportive of the idea of me leaving on two separate conferences so close apart, he was a bit worried about being eaten alive by the kids but I think he will survive. :)

Now, as anything else I have the dilemma of planning the whole thing. Conferences always cost money unless you have been saving up, have lots of extra money or are lucky enough to be sponsored as @CouponMomCanada and I are for Blissdom Canada '11. I'm hoping the sponsor fairy can come through for me for ShesConnected Conference, I would hate to have to pass up an opportunity like this because I can't afford it at the moment financially. School is starting soon and also K's birthday at the end of August so things are a little tight when it comes to extra money to spend elsewhere unfortunately. On the bright side, there are still six weeks to get everything organized!

Either way until the time comes I am accepting the invitation and calling myself going! I'm so honoured to not only be chosen among the deemed most influential but also to be one of the early birds who found out before everyone else :) :) I wanted to go last year but I was too slow in the application process and missed out on my chances at even being considered, my own fault but I was on the ball this year!

Huge Thank-You to Donna-Marie and all the wonderful ladies of ShesConnected!  I can't wait to meet all of you at the conference!

*This is not a sponsored post. I was chosen among 200 influential women to attend ShesConnected Conference this fall. All opinions are honest and those of A Motherhood Experience*


As a woman, I love shopping. I think it's in all our nature to love shopping, whether its in store or online we love to shop. Since having kids, clothing shopping for myself has become a rare thing. Since having kids of course most of the clothing shopping is for them. I do buy the basics of what me and DH need when it comes to clothes but majority rules in this house. They grow so fast and need so much, sacrifices are made, unfortunately in fashion but I can't really complain, I have everything I need. Or so I thought.

Fall is coming as is Blissdom Canada and looking at my closet this past week had me in a panic. I have nothing Bliss-worthy except for a few items I put aside as "nice clothes". Yoga pants, hoodies and tank tops anyone? Yeah, the fashion faux-pas of a stay at home mom, I know. If TLC's "What Not To Wear" was to ever visit I think they would have heart attacks in my closet.

As much as I would LOVE to head out tomorrow and go on a shopping spree just for me, reality is that I have a little girl starting school soon and she needs some new school clothes. She needs it more than I do.

Trying to figure out ways I could squeeze a couple of new clothing items for myself into my already tight budget I had an epiphany - my paypal savings. I have savings via PayPal, not really worth exchanging to my bank account but worth enough that I could do some retail therapy for that scary closet of mine. What better way to spend it than on a few new items for the fall season.

Now, as simple as that sounds you'd think most online stores would accept PayPal as an option but they don't. I asked around Twitter with no real luck so I turned to Google for some help.Of course a ton of irrelevant links came up but among them I may have found a few hidden treasures lurking in the online shopping world.

A Canadian based www.MimiMcQueen.com offers women's clothing at affordable prices, I ordered two items from them with a free shipping offer (valid until the 15th so check it out!). I also found www.grouptheworld.com which is a fashion wholesale shop based in Shang Hai, China. Yes, if you order a large amount from them you will pay duty fees (obviously) but according to their customer service on small packages (such as the ones I ordered) there are no duty fees charged. Both stores accept PayPal and the shipping costs aren't that bad compared to others I have found while searching for the perfect online clothing shop.

I will be posting more about the shops and the items once my packages come in, I can't wait! It puts a smile on my face to know that there are online shops on the PayPal bandwagon for those of us online shoppers who don't use a credit card.


Sunday I celebrated my 30th birthday. This year, as every other year I didn't expect very much. Sure, I tweeted a coutdown and was excited to turn yet another age but overall I was not expecting anything much more than spending it with the people who mean the most to me, my family.

Since having kids all I really ask is that we have a fun, family day together. It doesn't have to be anything big and we don't have to spend much money as long as we can look back and have the memories of spending it together. I guess you can say I'm sentimental like that when it comes to special occassions, more about who its spent with rather than what you spend.

This year it was much different than previous years. Of course there were the four of us. Myself, Hubby and the two kids. My inlaws were busy all weekend so they couldnt make it and my mother couldn't make it, which was unfortunate but not the end of the world. My dad however did come over and he came over with all intentions of making the celebration memorable. If he didn't, he did a pretty good job either way.

My dad bakes, so he baked up a batch of muffins for us and brought them over along with a Chocolate Cheesecake (that he did not bake himself but had K convinced he did because of the muffins) and of course a special card for me for my birthday.

It's not the muffins or the cake or even the card that made this day special for me. It's seeing someone I thought I wouldn't on the day I needed to see them the most.

It was nice to sit, reminisce and just talk. It was nice to see him interact with his grandchildren and them not shy away and call him "Grandpa". It felt good to have a part of my family back for in my eyes, a big milestone birthday in my life. You only turn 30 once and I couldn't have asked for a better way to celebrate.

Love this picture, even if it took a few takes :)