Let’s Talk Baby with Walmart Canada

December 1, 2014

I wouldn’t say I’m a perfectionist. Far from it! But if there’s one thing I loathe – one thing that scrapes at my nerves in the worst way – it’s being wrong, when I really should have known better. Like a simple math problem completed incorrectly on a test in elementary school. Or a misjudged parallel parking attempt. Or really, pretty much everything I registered and purchased for my first baby before he was born.

Wow, I was colossally bad at that.

The wrong baby bottles. The wrong bouncer. The too-expensive playpen and the not-expensive-enough travel system. But I mean, really, for myself, and every new mom or mom-to-be who is confronted with literally thousands of options, of course it’s a daunting task! And it’s only natural to make some mistakes along the way. Thinking back, I wish I had someone to consult over the items I purchased and registered for; more than a store employee simply pointing me to the right section.

Someone who actually had expert advice to share. Someone who could have stopped me from buying eight pacifiers… for babies 6 months+. Groan.

Are you expecting a baby? Do you feel like you’re in the same boat? I’m pleased to share some exciting news: Select Walmart Canada baby departments will feature in-store specialists to provide support and product knowledge to new and expecting parents. This initiative follows last month’s announcement of its baby registry and resource centre available at Walmart.ca.
Lets-Talk-Baby-FINAL-780-778x422On Tuesdays and Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at select stores, shoppers can look for in-store specialists at the “Let’s Talk Baby” kiosk, and for the first three weeks, specialists will also be available on Thursdays.

(Psst! Don’t be afraid to pop by with any product-related query you may have. Moms aren’t the only ones with questions, and Walmart’s baby departments are ready to support shoppers and provide helpful tips to make this an easy transition for everyone.)  (more…)

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Stolen MOMents with Nikon

November 30, 2014

A few months ago, I shared a fabulous little tidbit: I’m a Nikon MOMents Blogger! As such, I’ll be documenting my life (nothing new) and special occasions with my Nikon D3300 camera (very new – and exciting). Last month, I vacationed with my family in the Mayan Riviera with Transat Holidays, where we enjoyed seven blissful days in paradise.

So, beyond the obvious reasons for bringing along a DSLR camera – fabulous vacation photos, the ability to enlarge memories, crisp and clear scenic shots – why else should you release your inner shutterbug? Well, the Nikon 3300 makes it fun and easy to preserve those moments in the lifelike beauty they deserve: stunning 24.2-megapixel photos and 1080p Full HD videos with tack-sharp details, vibrant colors and softly blurred backgrounds.

(Plus, if you love sharing photos like I do, D3300 photos can appear instantly on your compatible smartphone or tablet for easy sharing with the optional WU-1a Wireless Adapter.)

But I suppose the real reason I am addicted to my Nikon for vacation photography is the ability to capture those stolen moments – the moments when the boys don’t know I’m about to take a photo; the opportunities to capture a sweet smile or a friendly snicker; the landscapes I want to preserve in my mind for years to come.

Today, I’ve love to share with you the stolen moments from my recent vacation.
DSC_1430Stolen MOMent #1430: Sunday Morning. Funny, it’s Sunday morning again – at roughly the same time this photo was taken – but my view today is decidedly different. Sigh. It would be heavenly to return to this balcony, to this view… if only to savour the moment a little longer. As the sun rises over the horizon, I can almost feel the humidity in the air, making my hair curl at the nape of my neck.  (more…)

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Gift Giving 2014: Mattel Holiday Toys

November 29, 2014

The gift giving season is upon us! And chances are, you have a very special boy or girl (or many boys and girls!) on your holiday shopping list. So let’s do this.

Quickly now! Do you have a child? Children? If you answered “yes”, the rest of this post will simply be a refresher course in holiday gifting.

However, if…

a) you’re an aunty, uncle, godparent, friend
b) you don’t have children yourself
c) are wondering how the heck to shop for children this Christmas…

Read on, friends, read on.

I’ll be blunt: there are two types of child-free gift givers. Those who get it: folks that ask parents for gifting advice, look for suitably aged toys and clothing, and remember the correct spelling of the child’s name on the gift tag. (Or, give cash. With 00’s.)

And those that don’t.

For those gift givers that sorely need a little push in the right direction – or busy moms who are looking to make holiday shopping simple – I present to you: Mattel Holiday Toys.

No matter what their age or interests, you’ll find Mattel toys on every child’s wish list. Put imagination and endless possibilities under the tree this holiday season with the hottest toys from Mattel! You’ll even be presented with a list of stores where the toy is available for purchase, making your shopping experience a piece of cake. (I told you I’d make it simple for you! You’re welcome.)

My picks? Well, you’ll just have to check out my recent segment on Global News at Noon in Toronto!

Fisher-Price Laugh & Learn Smart Stages Chair: Smart Stages technology is an exciting new way to change learning content as babies grow. This chair features 50+ songs, tunes and phrases and lets you select the stage that’s best for your child’s development. (more…)

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Holiday Traditions. With Chocolate.

November 25, 2014

It’s a sweet childhood memory that I’ll relive time and time again.

I was in first grade at a small Catholic elementary school. The holidays were coming; multicoloured decor was proudly displayed in Simpsons’ store window, the soft echo of Christmas carols could be heard throughout my home, and whispers of Santa Claus and his magical reindeer were upon our lips and in our hearts.

And on December 1st, my teacher distributed a thick cardboard calendar to each and every student. Curiously, we turned it around and traced our fingers over the cutouts.

“This is an Advent Calendar,” she explained. “And every day, we’ll celebrate the coming of Jesus; I’ll share a small story from the Bible, and you’ll be able to treat yourself with a small piece of chocolate, for being such good boys and girls.”

I loved that Advent Calendar.

It marked the first ritual for me; the first time I followed something through from start to finish, while understanding the significance of the season (and even a veiled warning to behave). This year, I’m continuing the tradition with Kinder Advent Calendars.
KinderSurprise-Product-Lifestyle-4281Available at Walmart Canada for $12.00, the Kinder Advent Calendar features a variety of eggs and mini chocolates, making each daily treat a surprise for your little elves. Included in the calendar:

1 Kinder Surprise
9 Kinder Mini Eggs
9 Kinder Schoko-Bons
2 Kinder Hollow Santas
3 Kinder Chocolates

I’ve selected my favourite Christmas-themed Bible scriptures and just like my first grade teacher, I’ll be reading them to Ryder and Reid every day. And then, if they’ve been good boys, they’ll be allowed to partake in a daily Kinder treat.  (more…)

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Can a Flight Change Your Vacation?

November 23, 2014

You’ve planned your vacation; you’ve charged it to your credit card. You’ve taken time off work and taken the kids out of school and you’ve even arranged for someone to come and water your plant.

You’re ready.

But let’s be honest – how often do you take your flight into consideration when booking your vacation? Often, the flight is simply seen as a necessary mode of transportation to get you from your home to paradise. And that’s why it’s easy to overlook the small stuff – like who you’re flying with and the flight options you’ve selected.

Trust me, that stuff isn’t so small.

Your vacation begins and ends with your flight. The experience is what sets the tone for your time away and is the last memory you’ll have upon your return. And that’s why I happen to adore Transat Holidays. Year after year, Transat Holidays is named best tour operator by travel agents in Canada – and it’s not just because they offer flawless family vacations at stellar prices. It’s because of the detail and attention they place on every aspect of your holiday – from the moment you book to the moment you return. And of course, that includes your flight.
Transat HolidaysThe Air Transat Kids Club is for children between the ages of 2 and 11 who are residents of Canada, the UK and France. This program is designed to make air travel a fun experience for young travellers (and for their parents, too!). (more…)

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Beaches Resorts + #FamilyTravelCA = Paradise.

November 22, 2014

Brrr. Baby, it’s cold outside. And while the wind howls and the snow dusts the ground, I have thoughts of long sandy beaches, warm turquoise waters and drinks with tiny umbrellas.

Sounds like the perfect time for a #FamilyTravelCA Twitter Chat!

Have you ever taken your family on a luxury all inclusive vacation? It’s an opportunity to spend quality time with the ones you love most, push yourself out of your comfort zone and seek out new adventures, and connect as a family on an entirely new level.

Often, while living – even temporarily – in the lap of luxury.

This month, we’ve teamed up with Beaches Resorts to chat about the ultimate all inclusive for everyone. From the 7-mile beach at Long Bay in Negril to the white-sand beach in Ocho Rios, Jamaica is the next entry on my family travel bucket list… and I’m looking squarely at you, Beaches Resorts. With more quality inclusions than any other resort, Beaches Resorts offers luxurious accommodations, kids programs, unlimited land and water sports, gourmet dining choices and more!

If you can dream it, you can probably find it at a Beaches Resort.

Join us on Tuesday, November 25th at 12:00 pm EST as we chat about the best of Beaches Resorts, including watersports, the many dining options, accommodations and of course, the Red Lane Spa.
1FBGplus_FamilyTravelCARSVP below for a chance to win one of our Beaches-inspired prizes, and see you at the party!  (more…)

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Oprah’s Favourite Things: Nine West Hadley Tote

November 22, 2014

NOTE: The following giveaway is open to Canadians only.

See this picture? Me and Queen O are pretty tight. And I always love to hear her reco’s.

This year, with the release of her coveted Oprah’s Favourite Things list, you know I’m all over it! I simply adore her personal style, her off-the-beaten-path suggestions, and especially her ability to predict (dictate?) this season’s best sellers. So far, I’ve bookmarked about 12 things I must have.
oprah4f-8-webTopping that list? The Hadley Tote by Nine West. Lightweight and spacious with an edgy look, the Hadley Tote is the grab-and-go bag for any season. Enhanced with silver-tone studs and textured PVC, the Hadley can be worn comfortably on the shoulder and keeps items secure with the interior zipper pocket and snap closure. This versatile tote is a great everyday bag, vacation carry-on, or the perfect gift for the holiday season.

“This is a lot of look for $100: Exotic faux leather and studs elevate the classic, roomy, go-anywhere tote. I happen to love it in white.” – Oprah

Love what you see? Me too! I’m always looking for a fun and flirty tote, especially since I’m frequently on the go and often need a shoulder bag to keep my hands free. (Have you ever chased after two boys in an airport? In the mall? After school? Yeah… you get my drift.) I’m also a strong devotee of winter white; it’s the perfect pop of colour against a mostly dreary winter wardrobe.  (more…)

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Power Shopping 101: It’s the #airmilesshops Twitter Party!

November 21, 2014

Attention Readers: It’s time to SHOP ’til you DROP.

With Black Friday and Cyber Monday (the unofficial start to the holiday shopping season) just around the corner, now is the perfect time to get a head start on that holiday shopping list! Oh, I know you’ve got about a gazillion people to shop for, and that’s why I’m here to let you in on a little secret.

While you’re making that list, and checking it twice… you can be rewarding yourself, too.

It’s true! All you have to do is make sure you visit www.airmilesshops.ca – the ONLY online AIR MILES shopping mall that gives Collectors the ability to earn reward miles as well as access to over 140+ major brand name stores. Earning AIR MILES reward miles while shopping online through airmilesshops.ca is as easy as 1, 2, 3:

Step One: Sign In – Sign in with your AIR MILES Collector Number and click “Shop Now”
Step Two: Shop – You will be taken to the retailer’s online site and shop as you normally would
Step Three: Earn – When you check out you will earn AIR MILES reward miles on your purchase!

Just remember to sign in through the portal and you’ll automatically earn rewards.

Curious about the participating brands? You should be! You’ll have a choice of over 140 major brand name stores, including Sears, The Apple Store Canada, Dell Canada, Chapters Indigo, Amazon.ca, eBay.ca, Lands’ End, LL Bean, Expedia, Bose, Victoria’s Secret and Hotels.com – just to name a few. My picks: ALDO Canada, Toys “R” Us, Old Navy Canada and Lancôme Canada, of course. BONUS: Top US retailers available through airmilesshops.ca include Macy’s, Neiman Marcus and JC Penny. Now that’s a rewarding cross-border shopping trip.

HOT TIP: From Nov 24 – Dec 3, AIR MILES Collectors who shop through the www.airmilesshops.ca portal will earn 10x the reward miles at 175+ online stores!

Ready to start shopping? We’ve got a ton of tips, tricks and deals to share at the #airmilesshops Twitter Party!
AMS Twitter Party GraphicJoin me and moderators @FeistyFrugal and @Candace_DX on Thursday, November 27th for a shopping party like no other! In addition to the fabulous shop talk, we’ll have some amazing prizes up for grabs, including the chance to win 1 of 6 Holiday Gifts from @AIRMILES. Mark your calendars – you won’t want to miss it! (See our official rules here.)

RSVP below for a chance to win – and be sure to bring your wish list to the party!

(more…)

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Thai Turkey Soup with Coconut Milk

November 21, 2014

It’s no question that one of the most exciting elements about the holidays is food, especially the quintessential turkey dinner shared with family and friends.

And then, there are the leftovers.

Now before y’all accuse me of bah-humbuging away turkey sandwiches, turkey casseroles and turkey pot pie – trust me! I love turkey traditional leftovers as much as the next person. But once in a while, I like to live a little. And that’s why I’m loving Tastes of the Nation from President’s Choice and Chef Rob Bragagnolo.

This year, the President’s Choice team wanted to discover new ways to create delicious turkey meals, so they partnered with acclaimed chefs from coast to coast to help create festive, locally-inspired turkey dishes that are easy enough to prepare in your own kitchen. And, each chef also developed a delicious leftover spin on their turkey dish – and I’m happy to share one of the recipes with you!
Quebec- Leftover dishFrom Chef Martin Patenaude in Quebec, turn your PC Free From Whole Turkey leftovers into this delicious Thai Turkey Soup with Coconut Milk.  (more…)

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This Season, #HolidaysHappenHere with Home Depot Canada!

November 20, 2014

My husband and I don’t always agree on everything. In fact, more often than not, we have a ying-yang thing going on. However, right around this time, as the snow falls lightly to the ground and Christmas carols play softly on the radio, we both agree that holidays happen at The Home Depot Canada.

From holiday trees (real and faux) and stunning ornamental décor, to outdoor inflatables and Griswold-worthy lights, they’ve got you covered – with unbeatable prices and selection both online and in-store. Browse their inspiration gallery and find festive touches that will perfectly fit your space. And, with contemporary, distinctive items from the Martha Stewart Living Collection, you’ll be the most stylish stop on Santa’s route.
north_star_close(HOT TIP: From Thursday, November 20 to Wednesday, December 3, 2014 receive a $25 coupon when you purchase any fresh-cut or artificial tree. The $25 coupon is valid for redemption from January 1 to 28, 2015 on a purchase of $100 or more.)

This season, I’ve got my eye on this gorgeous 32 inch Holiday Wreath With Silver Balls – I can perfectly picture it over my fireplace! And these Martha Stewart Living Antique Brass Stocking Hangers? Necessary to complete my mantle, of course. In fact, you may just want to pop by in a few weeks, as I’ve got a gorgeous DIY makeover to debut!  (more…)

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The Gift of Financial Cheer!

November 20, 2014

No, it’s not a lottery ticket. But trust me, the odds are much more in your favour.

(First, a little background information.)

When Ryder was first born, prominently featured in the “new baby” booklet were ads for Registered Education Savings Plans (RESPs). At the time, I promised myself that I would look into it – after all, having been through university myself, I was acutely aware of the costs of education. Still, the days were long and the nights were even longer, and just like that I forgot all about RESPs.

And really, if I had an extra $100 kicking around? I was spending it on formula and diapers.

Two years later, when Ryder was two years old and his little brother made an appearance into this world, my own brother inquired: “So, have you set anything up for the boys yet? For school or whatever?” I admitted that I hadn’t. And I couldn’t be bothered! I had two babies to take care of and a couple of bucks into a bank account to be used eighteen years down the road seemed the least of my concerns.

Then, Ryder began showing signs of social anxiety disorder, and it was strongly suggested I place him in a Montessori-type setting. Pretty quickly, I had to re-shuffle my lifestyle and finances. I mean, who assumes that they’re going to pay for kindergarten?? It’s just A-B-C’s and 1-2-3’s!

Two years later, I had invested almost $15,000 into Ryder’s kindergarten education.

It was the reality check I needed. Because one day, God-willing, both boys will require funds for their post-secondary education, and I never want to be caught off guard again. And at the same time, I want my sons to understand the value of money, the importance of saving for their education, and have an active role in investing in their future.
resp_education_savings_tipThe holidays are a great time to begin the conversation, especially since many parents and grandparents find themselves thinking about what to give a child as a present. According to a recent TD survey, more and more parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles and godparents are choosing to give the children in their lives some form of financial gift, including cash or an RESP contribution. Some see this not only as a monetary gift, but also as a way to start teaching children about responsible money management.  (more…)

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A Gift for Me: Today’s Showstopper at The Shopping Channel

November 18, 2014

NOTE: The following giveaway is open to Canadians only.

The best part of waking up? Nope. Not coffee in your cup.

It’s emails from my favourite shopping destinations announcing fabulous deals I must act on! Before I get out of bed! (And definitely before my husband rolls over and catches me shopping on my phone. Again.)

Such was the case this morning. My good friends at The Shopping Channel sent me a very special tip on Today’s Showstopper:

Lucent 14K Gold 88 Facets Martini Rope Border Earrings made with Swarovski Zirconia

TSC Price: $119.99
Today’s Showstopper: $88.88
Your Savings: $31.11
EASY PAY: 4 payments of $22.22
Shipping & Handling: $6.99
597122_ALTMORE6Make a statement in the name of classic, minimalistic elegance with these beautiful 14K gold 88 Facets cut martini rope border earrings made with Swarovski zirconia from Lucent. Lucent is The Shopping Channel’s private jewellery label, and through their unique partnership with Swarovski’s 88 Facets cut, they’re able to offer this extraordinary pair to you. Eight is the symbol for infinity, and this cut’s auspicious name speaks to balance and symmetrical beauty, offering a hand-crafted gem with the highest level of workmanship and style. Each stone features a microscopic laser engraving, verifying the authenticity of the Swarovski stone and quality.  (more…)

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Let’s Talk About Bones.

November 17, 2014

If you’re a woman, in your 30’s, it’s likely one of those things you haven’t given a second thought.

Osteoporosis. 

Oh, come on! That’s not on your radar for… what… another 30 years or so? I used to feel that way too. Until I received a very effective wake-up call, in the form of one single statistic: Women and men alike begin to lose bone in their mid-30s. Simply put, what you ignore today… could catch up to you tomorrow. Or even sooner.

So, what can you do? Educate yourself, of course! It’s never too early to think about your bone health. A well-balanced diet, consumption of calcium-rich foods, along with regular exercise, is the key to osteoporosis prevention. Thankfully, we have access to expert information from the folks at Osteoporosis Canada, in addition to dietitians who can offer advice and support, such as Diana Steele from Earth’s Own.

Bone is living tissue, constantly renewing itself. Give it the respect it deserves.

Have questions about bone health? Join the #AlmondFresh Twitter Chat on Thursday, November 20th at 1:00pm EST. We’ll take your questions, share our tips, and most importantly, give you the information you need to start taking care of your bone heath today.
Twitter-party-graphicTo thank you for participating, we’ll have some fabulous prizes to give away, including 9 x Earth’s Own Prizes Packs valued at $50 each, and one Grand Prize consisting of a grocery gift card, Earth’s Own products and more, valued at $130.  (more…)

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Shopping Traditions: William Ashley Warehouse Sale

November 17, 2014

Published posts on the Internet don’t lie. So, when I tell you that I’ve been a loyal customer of the William Ashley Warehouse Sale for over a decade, I have the proof to back it up. Just take a gander at this post from October 9th, 2008. Yep – it was one of the first posts I’d written on my blog! And in the brief article, I raved about the mammoth annual warehouse sale, which offers household, design and décor pieces for up to 90% off retail prices.

(I daresay it’s the hap-happiest time of the year.)

A kitchen table. A floor lamp. A handful of picture frames. Dozens of Christmas ornaments and too many baking supplies to count. And my most prized purchase: a vintage-inspired credenza that belongs in a Paris salon, but is happily set up in my sitting room. These are past finds at the William Ashley Sale.

This year, the sale has moved to a larger location in Vaughan (just off the 400). The space features 30,000 square feet of shopping, with over one million items up for sale! And as always, there’s more to the sale than William Ashley’s signature china and dishware – you’ll find Christmas décor, home décor, fashion items, candles, bath toiletries – even gourmet food.

Christmas shopping, anyone?

Last Monday, I had the enviable opportunity to shop the sale while it was closed to the public.
William Ashley SaleSince it’s tradition for my mom and I to visit the sale together, she was my special guest for the day. We spent a lot of time in the china and dinnerware section, simply because regardless of whether we need it or not, no one does fine china like William Ashley. And, Couture Platinum at warehouse prices? Yeah, you can see why we lingered.  (more…)

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We All Love to Connect. That’s the #CheeriosEffect.

November 16, 2014

In today’s busy, fast-paced, technologically-advanced (obsessed?) world, it’s easy to go days – even weeks – without having face-to-face contact with friends, family and neighbours.

Guilty, as charged.

And while it may seem normal to us, we’re actually missing out on the amazing benefits that direct connections provide, such as learning, happiness, resilience and longevity. Think about the spring in your step after a coffee date with girlfriends. Or the smile on your face following some uninterrupted family time. And now imagine how much healthier you’d feel if you made this a habit.

To help celebrate the happiness and joy connections bring to our lives, Cheerios has launched the Cheerios Effect.

You might ask yourself, what does cereal have to do with human connections? Well, the Cheerios Effect is a real scientific principle that is nicknamed after the cereal. The principle highlights the fact that if you drop two Cheerios into a bowl, they’ll always eventually float together and connect. Because just like those two tiny, floaty little Os, we’re all drawn together. In fact, we’re hard-wired to connect with those around us; nothing could be more natural.

And no matter who you are, where you live, or who you choose to share your life with, Cheerios believes that everyone is worthy of love and connection.

Share your personal connection story at CheeriosEffect.ca, where each unique story will be brought to life with a personalized video of Cheerios connecting in a bowl. And, join our #CheeriosEffect Twitter Party on Thursday, November 20th at 8:00pm EST, where we’ll celebrate all those connections that add value, happiness and health to our lives.
CheeriosEffect GraphicIn addition to an uplifting, inspiring chat, we’ll have some amazing prizes up for grabs, including 6 x $75 Visa gift cards (plus three boxes of Cheerios), and a grand prize of a $200 Visa gift card, with six boxes of Cheerios.  (more…)

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Walmart: Now That’s FRESH.

November 15, 2014

I buy my handbags from Prada, my sunglasses from Gucci and my shoes from Michael Kors.

And, I buy my fresh meat from Walmart. Wait, what?

Really, I’m not fibbing. Because for me, it’s all about quality – whether it be the stitching on a classic hobo or the tint on tortoiseshell glasses. And, in the case of Walmart, the fresh, affordable, high grade meat options are right up my alley.
Walmart Your Fresh MarketStill not convinced? Yeah, it took me a while to come ’round too. You see, once all the Walmart stores in my neighbourhood starting converting to Walmart Supercentres, I happily accepted the addition of fresh grocery items. Heck, given the prices, I welcomed it. (Honey Crisp Apples for just $2.69/ pound? Yes please!) But buying meat? From Walmart? I don’t know… there was just this strange disconnect that prevented me from embracing the fresh meat options. Until, one day, I decided to just try it.

And now, I’m a believer. Because it’s good – really good.

Walmart offers all Canadians quality 100% FRESH meat, found in-store at “Your Fresh Market”. Here, you’ll find Angus beef, farm raised and air chilled poultry, farm raised pork, and Canadian salmon. I am duly impressed with the freshness, the quality, and most importantly, the prices – the perfect combination for every Canadian family.  (more…)

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Toys? Oh, We’ve Got Toys!

November 14, 2014

Holiday shopping for wee ones *used* to be easy. You picked up a pink or blue outfit, grabbed whatever toy was on sale, et voila! Gifting = done.

But now… now there are whole aisles dedicated to baby toys. And really, how does one choose? They’re all so darn cute! But wouldn’t it be great if someone just told you about the hot toys for Holiday 2014? You know, took the guesswork out of selecting which one to buy, and pointed you in the direction of the toys that are on every parent’s wish list?

Ladies and gents: I’d like to cordially invite you to the Fisher-Price #fpwishlist Twitter Party. Join us on Wednesday, November 19th at 8:00pm EST as we share the hottest toys of the season!
FP_EVITE_BKG_wishlist_2 (2)In addition to a fun-filled chat, we’re also very much in the holiday spirit… a very generous holiday spirit… as we’ll be giving away TWENTY-FOUR (24) Fisher-Price toys! That’s four winners every ten minutes… so get ready for a fast-paced party!  (more…)

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Winter: Meet Your Fashion Fix

November 13, 2014

When I say the words, “Canadian Winter Fashion” – what comes to mind?

Parkas? Down-filled coats? Maybe toques and mittens. And we can’t forget snow shoes, am I right?

Well, when I think of winter fashion, I think of Tender Tootsies, a proudly Canadian company. Since 1940, they’ve provided women with comfortable and affordable footwear for every occasion – including our cold, harsh winters. Made with waterproof, heat-retaining and non-slip materials, these boots will get you through the winter months in style and comfort.

Think functional can’t be fashionable? Think again.

Join us for the #TenderTootsies Twitter Party on Tuesday, November 18th at 12:00pm EST. We’ll dish on seasonal fashion trends, share the best in Tender Tootsies footwear, and have four (4) amazing prizes up for grabs – the gorgeous boots you see below!
Tender Tootsies Graphic v2RSVP below for a chance to win, and we’ll see you on Tuesday afternoon!  (more…)

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The Easy Gift Giving Solution

November 12, 2014

Although I don’t like to admit it… from time to time, even I get stressed out by shopping.

(Yes, you are actually on Listen to Lena. No, do not adjust your computer monitor.)

The thing is, I have a certifiable problem – a medical anomaly, in fact – called prezzieselectophobia. It’s the fear of choosing the wrong holiday gift for someone. Sadly, treatment is currently not covered by any drug plans, but I do plan on lobbying the government for support. In the meantime, I employ coping techniques, such as accepting help from others who know a thing or two about holiday gifting.

This year, I’m taking advantage of GIFTS MADE EASY by Shoppers Drug Mart.
LogoShoppers Drug Mart has an abundance of inspiring gift ideas for everyone on your “nice list”, and this holiday season, shopping is even easier with their online gift finder that allows you to filter hundreds of gift ideas by price, categories, or the type of person you are shopping for.

(My inner prezzieselectophobic is at peace.)  (more…)

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Make Screening a Breeze this Winter

November 11, 2014

My family is no stranger to airports. In fact, I think of myself as somewhat of an expert on the subject of family travel. Yes, we’ve survived plane delays. Yes, I’ve prepared for mid-flight meltdowns. No, I haven’t figured out how to ditch the kids for a glass of champagne in business class *still working on it*.

Are you travelling over the next few months?

The weather outside may be frightful, but travelling this winter can be delightful! Whether you’re packing for a winter wonderland with the kids or escaping the cold, these tips from the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority (CATSA) will make airport security a breeze.

catsaBefore the Airport

Snowy weather can make getting to the airport a challenge, so make sure to arrive with plenty of time to check in and go through screening. Wait times for major airports are listed on CATSA’s website or CATSA’s app for your convenience.

Remember to put all liquids, aerosols and gels over 100 millilitres in your checked baggage ― only amounts less than 100 ml in a 1-litre clear, re-sealable plastic bag are allowed on-board.

Dress for Success

Though you’ll likely be bundled up for winter weather, remember to put your coat in a bin at the screening checkpoint. Same goes for boots and belts with large buckles.

Bringing the Kids?

Keep them happy by packing their favourite snacks – solid foods like fruit and chocolate are allowed in your carry-on bag. If you are travelling with an infant younger than two years of age (0-24 months), you can bring baby food, milk, formula, water, juice and other baby items in your carry-on bag.

And, look for the Family/Special Needs lane. There is extra space to accommodate larger items like strollers and car seats, and screening officers who offer additional assistance.  (more…)

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