It’s Time to #OwnTheThrone!

May 26, 2016

Ladies, it’s time to open the bathroom door wide open.

Bowel health, and particularly bowel health issues, aren’t always the easiest conversations to have. For many women the subject is considered “taboo”, especially when discussing with members of the opposite sex. And if you feel uneasy chatting about it, you’re not alone: according to the Dulcolax® Bowel Health Poll, seven in ten Canadians feel comfortable discussing their bowel movements with their doctor, but only two in five feel comfortable discussing the subject with their partner, and even fewer would discuss it with a close friend, parent or co-worker.

The stigma around bathroom habits needs to be addressed.

Join us on Wednesday, June 1st at 12:00pm ET for the #OwnTheThrone Twitter Chat. We’ll discus ways to keep digestive health a priority this season, and have a fun conversation to prove number two doesn’t have to be so taboo!
Twitter Party Invite - FINAL (2)To thank you for attending, we’ll be giving away six (6) #OwnTheThrone prize bundles valued at $125 each! They include everything you need to – you guessed it – own the throne.  (more…)

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You’re Invited: Laura Concept Store Grand Opening!

May 24, 2016

Calling all fashion lovers in the GTA – have I got an invitation for YOU!

The latest fashions, impeccable service and practical style advice. That’s the Laura philosophy.
13103543_1262976010396366_3552315898681950462_nLaura has come a long way since 1930, when company founder Laura Wolstein opened her first boutique in downtown Montreal. Today, Laura has over 170 stores (and still growing). However, perhaps most exciting is that you can now shop from home; Laura has launched an eCommerce website, where you can browse the entire Laura collection and have it delivered right to your door. (Tees and capris are currently buy one, get one 50% off.) Love it!  (more…)

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#BandTogether! Get Meghan Trainor to a Canadian Small Town!

May 23, 2016

I’ll admit it: growing up in and around Toronto, I’ve had no shortage of opportunities to see “big name” acts live in concert. In fact, even when other large Canadian cities are shunned on “World” or “North American” tours, Torontonians are always treated to a stop for the most popular bands and singers.

Time to change that.

AIR MILES is proud to present DETOUR, a new music program launched by the AIR MILES Reward Program in partnership with Live Nation. In the spirit of being better together, AIR MILES will be rewarding a lucky Canadian small town with an epic music experience – a chance to host Meghan Trainor LIVE in concert!
bg--vip-headerWant to get in on the fun? You should – because there’s totally something in it for YOU!

First, select the small town Canadian town you’d like to support from these finalists. I have committed my vote to Mulmur, ON! (Here’s a reason: They’re home to a festival that changed music history.)  (more…)

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Better Meat for Better Living: Greenfield Natural Meat Co.

May 20, 2016

NOTE: The following giveaway is open to Canadians only.

Following my post on Ontario Pork’s Social Responsibility Report, and my new found commitment to consume food from animals that are raised (not produced), I am pleased to introduce you to Greenfield Natural Meat Co.

Unlike most prepared meat products in the marketplace, Greenfield Natural Meat Co. products are only made with meat from animals raised without the use of antibiotics or hormones, and contain no artificial ingredients. And, the animals used in Greenfield Natural Meat Co. products are treated under some of the highest standards of animal care.

Does an Avocado, Ham & Provolone Sandwich made with 100% vegetarian-fed, Canadian farm-raised pigs taste *that* much better? Yes. Yes it does.
Lena Sandwich (2)I’ll be honest: I’m keen on Greenfield Natural Meat Co. products. Packaged meats (available across Canada) include family favourites such as bacon, baked honey ham and Black Forest ham; fresh meats (currently available in BC, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba) include pork loin boneless chop, St. Louis-style side rib, pork tenderloin and more.  (more…)

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Just In Case You Needed a Reason to Buy More Bacon

May 19, 2016

Thinking about it, one of the hardest things about being a mom (or a parent, for that matter) is the responsibility to make good food choices for my family. It’s my role to ensure that my boys grow up with a variety of healthy, nutrient-dense foods that are rich in flavour and offer a variety of tastes and textures. Because, I know that the favourable habits they form as children will dictate how they feed their own families in the future.

(What’s for dinner? Why not try this recipe for Grilled Pork Chops With Fresh Peach or Mango Salsa, courtesy of Ontario Pork. Prep time is only 10 minutes!)
ontario porkBut it doesn’t stop there. It’s also my role to ensure the food that we’re enjoying is produced and processed in a way that is economically, environmentally and socially responsible. Last month, Ontario Pork launched its inaugural Social Responsibility Report, becoming the first livestock commodity group in the province to commit to socially responsible practices achieved through education, greater dialogue and increased transparency.  (more…)

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Mom Hacks: Smart Sun Protection!

May 18, 2016

Ah, summer. How I’ve longed to feel the hot sun on my shoulders, the sound of children playing in the streets… the scent of sunscreen in the air. It feels like ages since I last felt your divine presence.

Wait a minute… I was in Orlando, Florida last week. It was hot, and it was fabulous.
IMG_2312 (2)Now, most of us are aware of the importance of wearing sunscreen all year round to protect our skin. UVA rays are present even on cloudy (and snowy!) days, and although exposure doesn’t cause burning to the skin, it is absorbed much deeper into our dermal skin layers and can cause ageing, pigmentation and cancer.  (more…)

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Today’s Post is Brought to You by the Number 28

May 17, 2016

Twenty-Eight. Vingt-Huit. Veintiocho. No matter how you say or spell it, it’s a beautiful number.

It’s the number of lunches I have left to make in the 2015-2016 school year. It’s the number of times I’ll hover over the kitchen counter, cutting a red apple for the kid who doesn’t like green grapes and peeling an orange for the kid who doesn’t like brown pears (this makes more sense if I draw you a directional diagram). It’s the number of times I’ll hear sounds of protest from both kids as I pack what I thought was their favourite food… only to find out it was their favourite food *last week*.

I’m done.

Thankfully, I have two saving graces. The first is the fact that the end of the school year is around the corner. The second is Schneiders Simply Lunch.
DSC_0368aNow you may not have pegged me for a lunch kit kind of mom. Truthfully, even I didn’t know I was a lunch kit kind of mom, until I was recently introduced to NEW Schneiders Simply Lunch.  (more…)

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Slim, Sexy White Jeans. For Moms. Wait, What?

May 16, 2016

Slim, sexy white jeans. And school-aged children. Think the two are mutually exclusive? Think again.

Introducing NYDJ Spotless Reputation denim. I’m wearing Ami Super Skinny jeans in – gasp – WHITE! And I can wear them confidently for a plethora of reasons I can’t wait to gush about – so moms, sit back and get ready to have your minds blown.
DSC_0345aFirst, and most importantly, NYDJ’s Spotless Reputation. The jeans repel certain liquids, like coffee and cola, for up to 15 washes. That means I can get right into the action without fearing errant spills or sticky fingers (both happen with alarming frequency when you have two young boys), and of course, be on trend for spring (white is everywhere!). I paired my jeans with my favourite comfy chambray shirt and floral rain boots – my go-to look this season.  (more…)

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New Obsession: NuPasta

May 16, 2016

I’ve been obsessed with many things over my lifetime, but one habit I’m not willing to kick is my new-found penchant for making Vietnamese Pho at home. Quite simply, the combination of richly flavoured broth, comforting noodles and spicy beef or chicken is just too good to resist. And now that I can make it myself, whenever a craving strikes – let’s just say that I *may* have found a new hobby.
DSC_0307aLast night, we made it with frozen Kobe beef meatballs and copious amounts of Thai basil. Verdict? Heaven. However, if you look closely, there’s another Nu addition to my noodle bowl – namely, the noodles! Now what would you say if I told you that one suggested serving of NuPasta – which 210g, a full package! – is only 25 calories and gluten-free? It’s TRUE! NuPasta is an incredibly healthy alternative to traditional pasta dishes, and it couldn’t be easier to make.  (more…)

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La Crème de la (Peanut Butter) Crème. #KraftPeanutBetterIt!

May 16, 2016

NOTE: The following giveaway is open to Canadians only.

Sometimes, it happens in the middle of a morning conference call. Often, it’s when I’m packing the kids off to school. And once in a while, it suddenly hits me when I’m still in bed.

The full-forced craving for this healthy, protein-packed Peanut Butter Ricotta Crème, made with Kraft All Natural Smooth Peanut Butter.
DSC_0260aThe fluffy texture contrasts nicely with crisp toast or a dense, chewy bagel. And, it’s completely versatile: you can use the crème as a dip for apple slices (my boys love to enjoy it this way), dolloped over blueberry pancakes or as a better-for-you icing for pound cake. The best part? It’s oh-so-easy to make, and you control the sweetness.  (more…)

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Show Your Legs Some Love! Summer-Ready Tips

May 11, 2016

One of my fondest memories as a young adult was stocking up on women’s beauty magazines, just before summer arrived.

“25 Must-Have Beauty Tricks To Get You Through Summer!”
“8 No-Sweat Beauty Tips for Summer Heat!”
“Ready, Set, Summer: 11 Updates for Your Beauty Routine!”

There were pages and pages of beauty-inspired wisdom to get through, with promises of the perfect peach-hued lip glosses, beach-tousled hairstyles, a super-smooth bikini line and more. I primped, polished and pampered, and then I declared myself ready for the summer season.

Today, my routine is *slightly* different: I shave my legs more often. The end.

You too? We’re not alone. In fact, a recent poll by Leger Marketing found that when compared to hair and facial beauty products (24 per cent and 32 per cent respectively), only 13 per cent of women spend the most on leg care products during the summer. This is in spite of the fact that more than 80 per cent of women say the appearance of their legs is important!
legsLadies, it’s time to show your legs some love! Here are summer-ready tips to have your gams looking and feeling great:

Problem: Dry, winter-beaten skin.

Solution: Love your legs! In the shower, get your general circulation and the flexibility in your legs going with a mix of hot and cold bursts of water. You can stimulate circulation by gently massaging your legs with your hands or a natural bristle brush. Follow up with a good moisturizer (choose a cream instead of lotion for extra-dry skin) and be sure to apply it as soon as you’re out of the shower, while skin is still damp.  (more…)

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(Almost) Picture Perfect

May 9, 2016

We took 18 family photos today at Hollywood Studios and this was the best one. Once in a while, I’m asked why I don’t put my kids in modelling. This would be why.Life isn’t picture perfect – not even when you’re on vacation. Kids will be silly, and throw tantrums, and push parents to their limits. They’ll fight and refuse to eat and splash water in each other’s faces even after the giggles have turned into tears.

You’ll ask yourself more than once why you even bothered to spend your hard-earned money. All you wanted to do was make memories with your children, but they’re behaving like a bunch of lunatics, not showing an ounce of gratitude for your generosity and sacrifices.

And then, just when you’ve reached your breaking point and you’re ready to head back to your hotel room, you’ll see wonder and delight etched across your child’s face as they discover something new, make a new friend or experience a moment of magic.

And just like that, you’ll decide that it’s worth it. It’s all worth it.

We have two more days left in our Walt Disney World vacation and we intend on making the most of our time here. I’ll be back later this week! In the meantime, have a wonderful day, friends!

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Upgrade Your Breakfast: #KraftPeanutBetterIt

May 3, 2016

The game goes like this: You’re stranded on a deserted island and you can only have three things with you until you’re rescued. What do you choose?

For me, it’s fairly simple. A case of water purification tablets, my e-reader (pre-loaded with hours of chick lit) and of course, a jar of Kraft All Natural Smooth Peanut Butter. A spoon is optional.

Kraft Peanut Butter makes everything better. It’s endlessly versatile and you can find inspiration just about everywhere, from protein-packed morning smoothies to savoury satay-style chicken at dinnertime- it’s not just a spread! My family loves the nutty goodness and depth of flavour Kraft All Natural Smooth Peanut Butter adds to meals; I love that it’s made with natural ingredients and packed with peanuts, a great source of protein and vitamin E.
DSC_0245Are you ready to think outside the jar? Here’s a recipe for Peanut Butter Granola your whole family will love. Sprinkled on top of Greek yogurt or enjoyed on its own, chances are you already have all the ingredients in your pantry. Bonus: you can get the kids involved, as the prep is super simple. Remember: Make Together. Stick Together.  (more…)

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Driving Change with Financial Literacy

May 1, 2016

I am a proud Ryerson University graduate. Class of 2001, I earned a Bachelor of Commerce majoring in Human Resources Management, with a double-minor in Communications and Finance.

Today, I’m a blogger. But I’m much more than that.

I am an entrepreneur. I am a marketing professional and I dabble in public relations, too. I am a media spokesperson and a contract negotiator. I employ subcontractors, manage day-to-day finances and write, edit and publish an online journal.

I am a woman empowered by financial literacy, which has allowed me to make sound, timely decisions for my business and my brand. In fact, when asked about the “secret to my success”, it’s simple: I have a basic knowledge of money and finances. And it’s my wish that every entrepreneur has access to the same knowledge – especially in developing countries, where the need is greatest.
enactus2Introducing Enactus. Enactus stands for “ENtrepreneurial ACTion for others creates a better world for US all”. It is an international non-profit organization dedicated to inspiring students to improve the world through entrepreneurial action.  (more…)

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Twitter Party Alert! #CMRLovesMoms

May 1, 2016

One of my first memories of being a new mom was signing up with the Canadian Mother Resource. It’s the source for everything from preconception to pre-school and beyond, and I was pleased to receive offers and samples from many of their partners. (Receiving free samples in the mail is like winning the lottery when you’ve got a newborn in the house.) That’s why I’m happy to recommend their services to all the moms-to-be and new moms I know.

The CMR loves Moms, so in honour of Mother’s Day, they’re throwing a party just for you! (And me!)
cmrlovesmoms_2016_twitter_partyJoin us on Tuesday, May 3rd for the second annual #CMRLovesMoms Twitter Party. We’ll be tweeting about all things Mom-related, so pop by and join the conversation. Of course, it wouldn’t be a party without fabulous prizes, so they’re giving away over $500 in gift cards so that some lucky Moms can indulge themselves this Mother’s Day!

RSVP here to be eligible for prizes, and we’ll see you on Tuesday night!

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Listed… Loved… Lost. The Role of FOMO in Home Buying.

April 28, 2016

It’s a time in our lives we try not to dwell on, and yet, it’s also a lesson we won’t soon forget.

That time we entered two bidding wars on homes for sale… and lost.

Thinking back, I recall the sense of urgency we felt when we first found what we believed to be our “forever home”. In a booming neighbourhood, close to the best schools and just the right modern styling to suit our tastes, it was love at first sight – and we fell, hard. As fates would have it, a similar property was also for sale, just one street over – ensuring we’d have two chances to score the home of our dreams.
virtual-tour-203394-02“You should visit soon. Homes like this sell on average in 3 days. There is an 75% chance that this home will be sold within one week of listing.”

Okay, no pressure. I mean, I wasn’t quite ready to pack up my house, but of course we’d find a way. And since the boys were still relatively young, changing schools wouldn’t necessarily impact their social development.  (more…)

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Who’s Afraid of the Big, Bad Yeti?

April 25, 2016

Okay, so perhaps it’s not the Yeti that has me so freaked out.

Perhaps it’s the backwards portion of the roller coaster. Or the fact that a large part of it takes place in the dark. Now that I think about it, it’s probably the ascension to the top of the mountain, the 80-foot drop, or the basic reasoning that it’s labeled a “thrill ride”.

Whatever the reason, I’m scared of Expedition Everest – Legend of the Forbidden Mountain.
Walt Disney World Photo Gallery Disc“My 7-year old rode it!” one IG follower said in encouragement. Well, the thing is – so did mine. And that gives me cold comfort, because now I realize that I’m the biggest wimp ever.

“It’s nothing – you hardly feel anything and then it’s over,” my husband assured me. However, I can’t help but remember that time I ate chips from his private stash, and he promised he’d get me back… and I can picture him saying “Ha! Ha! Gotcha!” as we barrel down the mountain. Shudder.

Alas, for all the times I’ve been to Walt Disney World, I do believe it’s time to conquer my fear. Wish me luck, friends. I’m ready for the Forbidden Mountain.

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Insurance That Fits

April 22, 2016

I remember it like it was yesterday, even though it happened eight long years ago. Having just celebrated my baby shower – and my 30th birthday – I sprawled out in the family room, staring up at the ceiling.

“We’ll need a will,” I called out to my husband, “and an RESP…. and life insurance,” I finished, mentally listing all the things I knew I had to figure out in anticipation of our first child.

“And we’ll get to it,” he assured me, one eye on the baseball game.

That night, I lay awake in bed thinking about worst case scenarios. I chastised myself for worrying about things that were unlikely to happen, but nevertheless, my feeling of unease grew throughout the night as I tossed and turned in bed. The next morning, unwilling to put it off a moment longer, I made several appointments to get my affairs in order before our baby arrived. A will was drafted; an RESP was created; life insurance was purchased. I felt ready for the birth of our child.

(But, ready for motherhood? Never. That’s a whole other story!)
289054_10150756961090182_4711909_oSignificant milestones, like the birth of a baby, are the perfect time to re-evaluate your financial and insurance options. When one is anticipating life, I know it can be difficult to think about anything else. However, in the past few years alone, the passing of a few friends has been a grim reminder of how precious life is… and how life goes on, for children, spouses and even parents. (more…)

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#DermWednesday: Spring Clean Your Cleansing Routine!

April 18, 2016

NEW OBSESSION! CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser Bar. Check out my video testimonial here.

Facebook Graphic (2)This week, our #DermWednesday Twitter Chat introduces CeraVe’s newest product to gently cleanse dry, sensitive skin. I’ve been using the bar for just over a month now, and my skin is soft, smooth and never dry, thanks to the 5% CeraVe Moisturizing Cream included in the bar. (And, it’s fragrance-free and non-irritating.) I’ve raised the bar with my cleansing routine! I can’t wait to tell you all about it.

As always, Dr. Ben Barankin from The Toronto Dermatology Centre will be there to answer any of your skin care questions and/or concerns.

To thank you for joining the conversation, three (3) attendees will win a CeraVe Prize Bundle, including a selection of CeraVe’s must-have cleansers and moisturizers!

Follow @CeraVeCanada and @DermatologyTDC on Twitter, and see you on Wednesday night!

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