Monday, April 4, 2016

What's In My Locket?

My Mother’s Day gift came early this year! 

Lockets. I love them. I am almost always wearing one. I have one I inherited from my Gramma with a photo of each of them when they began dating. I also have a few aromatherapy lockets that I rotate through.

I think what I love about photo lockets is how they are so uniquely personal and sentimental, but also a bit mysterious. Not many people will ask to see what you feel is so important you want to carry it close to your heart. It’s a way of keeping those treasured people or things with you throughout the day. Each time you see it (or if you are like me, play with the clasp), you think of what is inside that locket. It’s a way for me to have a little moment of mindfulness in a typically hectic day.  

When I was contacted about the Monica Rich Kosann collection, I just about fainted. They are STUNNING. Exactly the piece of jewelry I would cross my fingers for when opening up a gift. The pieces are unique and gorgeous, and I love that they come with a long chain, as I love to wear my necklaces long. This locket is a piece of jewelry I know will be handed down just as my Gramma’s locket was.

What I think really stands out in this collection is that Monica began as a photographer. Her eye for design and aesthetics is obvious, but it comes from a place of function. She has designed the pieces to hold my favourite photos, not just a pretty necklace. The most unique thing about this locket is that you can go to the website and upload your photo into the template which is specific to your locket, and print it out immediately. You don’t have to fumble through resizing and cropping, or order an expensive custom print. This also means it’s easy to change up the photo when you get a new favourite. 

This is my ideal Mother’s Day gift, because I will let you in on the little secret of what’s in my locket: my boys and my darling husband. But I bet you never would have guessed that. They did just edge out a giant cup of coffee though. It was a close call. Basically if you ask me what I want for Mother’s Day (because that is totally something you would ask, right? RIGHT?) I would tell you the following: something nice that I would never buy for myself (check!), a giant cup of coffee and an hour to browse in Chapters alone without having to visit the train table. 

I have great news for my fellow Canucks, who so often get let down once we go to our online cart and see the shipping is more than the product: Monica Rich Kosann offers free priority shipping on all orders to Canada. Not only that, but if you are local to Calgary, they also sell her collection at Rubayait on 17th Ave if you want to see them in person first! 

**Disclaimer: I received this necklace in exchange for a review, but all thoughts and opinions are my own (as always!) and I genuinely am in love with this product. I mean, who wouldn’t be?? 


Sunday, January 31, 2016

Learning to Crochet in the Mountains

I have done the impossible! I have become crafty!

A few of my blogger friends (and by a few, I mean 14 of us…) decided we needed a weekend away. An epic girls trip in the mountains where the only thing we had to worry about was where to eat and which pjs to bring.

Our view from the room at Big Horn Meadows. It looked like a painting!

Now, when I say epic girls trip it may bring about different connotations than the reality. This was the type of girls trip where we shopped at the thrift shop, ate at the local cafĂ©, ordered pizza, watched Pitch Perfect 2 and crocheted. That’s right, we crocheted.

One of my dear friends happens to be a very talented crocheter (is that a word? Spellcheck says it is not. What do you call people who crochet?!) and she was crazy enough to volunteer to teach me. I will tell you, it started off very rocky. Somehow I managed to keep adding stitches upon stitches when I should have been keeping them the same. It is a mystery. HOWEVER, it did eventually get easier, and I managed to make this amazing little hat.

It turns out I find it very relaxing and therapeutic and so now I am attempting to make a blanket. Erin has tons of easy and awesome patterns on her blog ( if you want to check them out!

Why on earth did I not turn my phone around for this pic? Because I was too cozy and chill, it's my only excuse.  

In Radium we were so fortunate to be hosted by Big Horn Meadows Resort. This is not just a clever name; there was  actually a herd of Big Horn sheep that wandered around the grounds the entire weekend we were there. Hello guys!!

The rooms were awesome. They were 3 bedroom units, and were spacious and gorgeous and cozy. They would be perfect if we took the kiddos out to Radium with us, as they could have their own little room, and we could still hang out in the living area and kitchen and not worry about keeping them up. The rooms were so large they fit 14 of us comfortably in the living room/dining room area and we were even able to do yoga on Sunday morning! So perfect.

This may be the only time you will see a photo of me without my trusty glasses. 

Nothing refills your batteries like a weekend in the mountains. I honestly cannot recommend it highly enough. We of course went to the Radium Hot Springs for a soak, and also I went every single day to Kicking Horse Coffee headquarters. Because COFFEE.

So a huge thank you to Big Horn Meadows for hosting us crazy ladies! I can’t wait to go back. They also happen to have a special on to save 20% off room bookings for 2 nights (or longer, because you will not want to leave), so if you want to check them out just let them know you want the Blogger Discount. It's good until June 23, 2016, but it's not valid on long weekends. 


Tuesday, December 29, 2015

I'm a Good Mom

Ah, the week before New Year's. This is a time where I traditionally reflect on all the things I do wrong, and how I'm not going to do them wrong the next year. It's a time when I think of all the things I am NOT (not healthy, not good with money, not fit...) and how I am going to attempt to change all of those things starting January 1st. But this year I actually surprised myself. 

Being a mom is probably the largest part of my identity at this time of my life. And generally, since I have been thrust into that role, I have never felt like I excel at it. I always have felt that I am surviving; some days better than others, but surviving nonetheless. 

Good Moms definitely make sure to take Instagram Selfies. 
Despite all of the reassurances to the contrary from my husband, my family, my friends, my therapist, the internet, the piles of parenting books and my other parent friends, I still believed I wasn't doing a great job at being a mom. I was doing an adequate job; I was the world's okayest mom. 

But reflecting back on this year, I had the shocking realization that I don't really feel that way anymore. In fact, I think I'm doing a damn good job. Even if my kids watch too much Netflix, eat McDonald's, and are not fully potty trained. Even though I hate the park, I don't make cute little presents for preschool on holidays, and I often don't shower for more days in a row than is probably healthy. Even if sometimes I feel like I want to scream, and sometimes I do. Even if I need some precious alone time from my children, but then sneak into their rooms and risk waking them up just to get the goodnight kiss I missed. Now, when my children throw an epic tantrum in the middle of the grocery store and all eyes are looking at me and how I will deal with it, I know that no matter how it ends I AM A GOOD MOM. 

I am not perfect, but as someone once said to me: "if there was such a thing as a perfect mom, you would hate that person anyway". There is no need to be perfect, because what my kids need is me, crazy and all. All of those times I felt like I was barely surviving, and doing a horrible job at raising tiny humans, I was actually just being a great mom. Because that is what great moms do. 

I have told myself this countless times before this day, and never ever truly believed it. I would say it, and then think of all the things that I needed to fix about myself, to make me "a good mom". This doesn't mean that there isn't a bunch of things I can do better, because of course there is. But not doing them doesn't mean I am failing at all. That is a very freeing thought. 

So this new year, I will still start it off with wishing I was more healthy, more fit and better with money. But I will not be feeling horrible about the year I just gave to my children. I actually feel really proud of it, despite all the rough spots, because it means that I have been lucky enough to spend it with the people I love the most in all of the world, and I know that they (and I!) am better for it. 

So Happy New Year to all of the Great Moms reading this. I wish you another year of joy, tears, tantrums, messes and LOVE. 


Thursday, October 1, 2015

Lazy Mom Fall Decorating Reveal

My front door area needs a lot of help. The door is just awful; full of marks and old stickers. I am desperate to replace the door with one with a window to let some light in because I have zero windows on the front of the house on my main floor. But replacing a door seems like a normal person DIY project, which means we are not capable AT ALL of doing it. So it will wait. 
So beautiful...

But it is a bit sad. I have a dead hanging basket hanging on the front and a generic black rubber mat that says "Welcome". That's it. I wanted to spruce my stoop (is it a stoop?) up for the fall season.  So here is the before photo:

See? It needs some help. There is a lot of space for really cute fall decor, and it has a lot of potential. So I did some decorating that fits into my busy lifestyle:

All Fall-ified

 Isn't it amazing? Here, I'll show you a side-by-side comparison just so you don't miss it. 

And here, my dear ones, is an example of setting small, achievable goals. You too can have a blog worthy front porch with minimal effort! Here is a handy tutorial: 

Step 1: Purchase pumpkin.
Step 2: Place pumpkin on step. 

Happy Fall Everyone! 


Monday, July 20, 2015's Me

Whoa. So normally I kind of hate the "sorry I haven't written" type posts, but considering the fact it's been about 2 years since my last post, I suppose there should be SOME sort of catchupiness happening here. 

So. It turns out blogging when you have 2 small boys is hard, yo. I mean, I had a lot of balls to juggle, and blogging seemed like the best one to drop. Because the other two were my boys (and that isn't a good thing, I am pretty sure we can all agree), or my ever-loving mind. I have managed to escape with that one somewhat intact, though it hasn't been without a struggle. 

Depression and anxiety are not great for my creative juices. I had opened my laptop many times and stared at the blank screen with my hands ready to type and literally nothing came to mind. It was almost like someone had deleted the writing program from my brain. I have not really written much of anything for 2 whole years, and that is pretty crappy. Because I do love to write, even if it is dumb little anecdotes. 

So, here we are. 2 years later. After therapy, and group therapy and medication and many, many, many tantrums (both from the kids and from me), and tears and laughter and joy and fun and sadness. We have made it through, and are at a point where I can put them in front of the TV to watch Penguins of Madagascar (I mean, how hilarious is Dave?!) and sneak upstairs to write this. Because the days of my children needing 140% of my time and attention are gone, and now they only need about 110%. So maybe I can use that -30% to concentrate on myself for about 20 minutes until someone needs something. I mean seriously, how many times a day can you hear the words "Mom, I'm STILL hungry!!"!?!  You are tiny little humans with stomachs the size of lemons*. I mean how much can you actually fit in there for crying out loud?? 

*please note, I have no idea what the actual size of a preschooler's stomach is. 

You know what? Parenting is hard. Being a person is also sometimes very hard. It's even harder to be a parent and also a person at the exact same time. I haven't got it mastered yet, but I am getting better at it. 

I'm sure it's been hard, in my absence, to not know what my thoughts were on (trying desperately to think of parenting issues that have happened in the last 2 years...) the Royal babies, celebrity baby names and *insert hot-button parenting issue here*, but I am sure you managed somehow. And thank you to all who wrote me a note to check in and see how I was doing, and to those who requested I start to write again. I am sure you will regret your decision soon enough. 

So here is where we are at now. Peanut (Finn) is turning 4 next week. New Baby (Q) is now 2.5 and Hubby and I are still basically the same, just with a few grey hairs. Also, Kitty is still alive and well (she is still not quite right in the head, but that is her normal, and we generally love her anyway). We moved into an awesome house last year where we finally feel completely at home. Despite my terrible past as a plant serial killer, I am trying my hand at growing some fruit and veggies in our gardens and not completely failing. So far my success rate is about 60%. The plants are being lulled into a sense of safety. I am still at home with my boys, which means I basically sit on my butt all day and watch Maury Povich (is that guy still on TV? Because Oprah isn't, right?) and eat bon-bons. 

So there we have it. When written down it sort of sounds like I haven't done much these last 2 years. Which is basically true, lets be honest. Sometimes just surviving is all the busy you can handle. 

Much love to you all. I've missed you, darlings. 



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