Comfortable, stylish and locally made clothing that flatters every woman. {Giveaway} #MandalaSky

Nothing says comfortable more than clothing that moves with your body and flatters your body type. And when it’s stylish as well, you’ve got it made!

Mandala Sky

Mandala Sky Clothing, from Saltspring Island, is a gorgeous line of Bohemian Style meets Yoga Lounge Clothing that you will fall in love with.

Mandala Sky Clothing

There are so many gorgeous pieces available, that you are sure to add several pieces to your wardrobe.

And this is your lucky day!

Mandala Sky Clothing is giving away one of their beautiful Jolene jackets to one lucky person! Valued at $125.

Jolene jacket

This giveaway is open to residents of Canada and the US. Please enter via the Rafflecopter link below.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Father’s Day…a shopping experience. #YMCCommunity

Father’s Day is this weekend, so I loaded up the kids and headed to the local shopping mall.

Photo credit: The Now News

Photo credit: The Now News

We arrive and hit up the play area so the kiddos can burn off some of their excess energy and build up an appetite for a bite of lunch.

There’s a pile of kids running amok and our little spazzes are terrorizing the small enclosure. Our daughter decides that she’s the only one allowed to play in the Hollow Tree and mouths off to another kid. So Mama Bear makes her appearance and demands an apology be said or we will be heading home post haste.

The apology is made under her breath and in a huff.

Then our young lad feels that he should be driving the car (as most men do) in the play area and bops the little girl sitting in the driver’s seat, in the nose a couple of times before my go-Gadget-go arm is able to stop him.

Another apology session is played out in protest, but it too is made.

The play area starts to get crazy, so I manage to persuade our spawn that it’s lunch time and if we go now, we can get pizza! The most appropriately priced meal in the entire fast food selection in the mall. Three of us can eat for $5, not $15.

We get our food, our daughter gets the job of putting the Parmesan on the slices. She proceeds to empty the entire shaker onto our food…awesome.

Lunch is had, but most of the wee lad ‘s portion, ended up on the ground and the little lady’s pizza ended up topless. I reflect back to my comment about the most appropriately priced meal in the mall.

Now, it’s time to get Daddy’s Father’s Day gift.

We hit up Cole’s and they’ve got a table stacked with books right at the front of the store marked, “Great reads for Dads”, so this makes my life a bit easier. I won’t have to spend too much time scouring the shelves while my monsters start to get bored. As I’m reading the inside leaf of a book, our son takes a swipe at the neighbouring table and a stack of books go sliding off and onto the floor with a loud crash! I pick them up and he decides to launch his bear and soother across the store.

Not exactly as shown.

Not exactly as shown.

Time to go.

I collect our daughter, who has planted her bum down in front of the magazine rack and is leafing through a Monster High and a Scooby Doo magazine, pay for the book that I had chosen and as I’m doing so, the boy rips a shelf talker off the checkout display and totally destroys it.

Good grief….

I hand the pieces to the cashier, apologize and make like the wind and break.
We head to Old Navy as fast as our daughter’s legs will move and as I’m looking for Daddy’s size, the lad pulls a stack of jeans off the shelf and onto himself. Our daughter is running around the racks playing hide and seek and laughing maniacally while the other shopper’s deke out of her way. I pick up the stack, grab a couple pairs of shorts that may or may not be the right size, and B-Line it for the checkout.

Last stop, card store.

We race to the other side of the mall and find the Father’s Day card section.
I manoeuvre the stroller so that it’s right in the middle of the aisle, and to my delight, little guy can reach both sides.

Hmmm…which side to choose? The highly breakable side containing ceramic and glass ornaments, or the rack of cards. I choose the latter. Possibly the safest (and cheapest) choice if Armageddon ensues.

I must say, that when it comes to card shopping, I make really good choices and can do so quite quickly. But not as fast as our son, who had now pulled several cards out and is on the verge of destroying them. I pry the wee lass away from her Show & Tell of the “sound” cards to the fellow patrons and we get through the checkout without too much trouble. Only a few items grabbed and replaced.

It’s now nap time as the Spazzometer starts to go off!

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Screaming through the mall, past the play area, where the volume increases because we don’t stop, we get back to the van.

Little Dude doesn’t want to get into his seat. He protests by performing his best impression of a 2×4, and won’t bend in the middle so I can click him into his seat belt. He slides down the seat and as I hoist him back in, I bonk his head into the ceiling of the van causing even more yelling and crying.

Spectacular.

When he takes a breath and relaxes, I am able to get him restrained in his moment of weakness.

The 15 minute drive home feels like half an hour from the screaming going on. But our daughter merrily sings along to the radio, completely tuning out her brother.
We get home, put the lad in his bed, I finally sit down for a minute and….

“Mom! Done! I went poo!

Aaaahhhh…the life of a parent to young kids.

Happy Father’s Day, Dear! I hope you like your presents.

#WhenToddlersAttack

#WhenToddlersAttack

When only a kiss from Mom will do! {Giveaway} #MomsKisses #YMCCommunity

Kids are clumsy!

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They always seem to have cuts and bruises and they just appear out of nowhere. It’s all just a part of being a kid. We were there once and we learned a lot from falling.

Being more careful, paying attention to our surroundings and thinking first before we just jumped into something or taking off.

And whenever we crashed and burned, Mom, being the super hero she is, was always there to kiss our boo boo’s and make it all better.

Super Mom

Photo credit : Sheknows.com

 

When Mom can’t be there to plant a wet one on the newly acquired battle scar, thank goodness for Mom’s Kisses!

Mom's Kisses

Mom’s Kisses a safe, natural alternative for topical pain relief. It is made from the natural Arnica flower with a hint of lavender and is a non-GMO, drug-free way to help the body heal itself more rapidly.

Mom’s Kisses should be used on bumps, bruises and sore muscles. It’s best to avoid cuts, scrapes and open wounds, as the alcohol in the product will cause stinging and add to the discomfort.

Mom’s Kisses has generously provided Raincity Parent, a full-sized spray to giveaway to two lucky readers (1 Canadian and 1 US)! This giveaway runs from June 13th – 20th and is open to residents of Canada and the US only. Please enter via the Rafflecopter link below.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Role reversal…Stay-At-Home-Daddy. #YMCCommunity

Four and a half years ago, I hung up my steel-toed boots to become a Stay-At-Home Mom, when our daughter was born.

Work boots

Prior to having kids, actually, prior to getting married, my husband and I decided that I would be the primary caregiver to our children and he was going to be the bread winner.

I was looking forward to staying home and raising our wee ones rather than paying someone else to do it while we both worked. My pay check would also have been completely been eaten up by child care anyways, so what’s the point in going back?

Almost three years later, we welcomed our Little Dude to the family. Now that the wee man is approaching 2 years old, and his big sister starts Kindy in September, days with these two can get pretty hairy.

Worn out Mom

With the fighting, bickering, yelling, stubbornness, throwing of things, and trying to prevent the boredom from taking over causing the maniacs to spin out of control and drive Mom batty, I savour the afternoon nap that our son still takes while our daughter gets the opportunity to do crafts without the “help” of her little brother.

I get to sit down, catch up on my emails, check my notifications on Facebook, and perhaps, blow out a blog post or two. Some days, I even manage to close my eyes as I lay back on the couch, while still being with our daughter. Never really having a nap because, “Mom, I need to pee! Mom, I need some water! Mom, I’m hungry! Mom, I want to watch something! Mom, can I play the game!”, tends to snap you back to reality pretty quickly.

I often pour a VERY large cup of tea in the afternoons to keep me going until my second wind comes.

Life as a SAHM, for me, can have some pretty stressful days that knock the wind right out of my sails causing me to seriously consider getting back into the workforce.

The other week, I had my eyes opened as to the stress my husband undergoes.

Stressed out Daddy

A few years ago, the economy and a business partnership that went down the toilet, caused hubby to have to find a new job. He is a born leader, takes his job very seriously and is a very hard worker. In fact, he goes above and beyond to prove his worth, only to not have it recognized in the appropriate monetary value. So the stress of providing enough of an income to support his family, babysitting grown men, and dealing with his former business woes, are weighing down on him pretty hard lately and I’ve decided that Daddy needs a break!

I’m ready to switch roles.

Switching roles

He can stay home with the kiddos now. It should be easier for him, as one will be in school full-time in the Fall, so he and the wee lad can have some Father-Son bonding time. I will look forward to having meals prepared instead of preparing them myself. Daddy used to be a really great cook and has gotten out of practice since I took over the role.

Stay At Home Daddy

A small part of me thinks, “Ha ha! Now you’ll understand what it’s like looking after small humans ALL DAY…EVERYDAY, come up with meal ideas and prepare them, keep up with the household duties, go grocery shopping, be a constant source of entertainment, be a referee, maintain a schedule with the kids and still have the energy to exercise or perhaps, have a little Mommy and Daddy Time!” (wink wink, nudge nudge).

Playing with the kids

So now, I’m searching…

Searching for THAT job. The job that will pay me what I need to support my family. The job that will allow us to buy a house, finally. The job that will afford us to get away for some much needed Family Vacations. The job I will love, succeed at and give Daddy the break that he needs.

THAT job.

Have you and your spouse decided that your circumstances weren’t working for you anymore and that a change was needed? Did you switch roles or perhaps relocate?

Snacks your child will love! #LoveChildOrganics #YMCCommunity

If you have kids…you know that you must ALWAYS carry snacks with you wherever you go.
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Even a short trip to run errands, and the kidlets are hollering for something to eat.

The old standbys like granola bars, fishy crackers, chips, and gummy snacks are probably not the healthiest of options, but they travel well. Fruit pouches are a favourite of ours because they are available in so many varieties like Love Child Organics.
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Love Child Organics make several healthy snacks that your weelets will enjoy! All of their yummy products are nutritionally-focused, organic and contain no unnecessary ingredients. That means you will never find refined sugars, additives, preservatives or fillers in any of their products.
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You can find Love Child Organics products at the retailers listed here.

Smelly Markers…a Thank You Letter. #YMCCommunity

Dear Smelly Markers,

Thank you for bringing me back to my childhood when I smell your familiar fragrance.

Thank you for making my artwork so bright and aromatic at the same time.

 

Thank you for still being around so that my kids can enjoy your awesomeness.

Smelly markers

Thank you for your delicious fragrance that no kid can help but inhale upon opening the lids.

Thank you for giving my children something to do when I’m not looking.

Thank you for the hilarity that ensued.

Thank you for your indelible ink that is not easily removed.

Thank you for creating more work for me.

Unsupervised children.Thank you for creating memories for us to look back at.

THANK YOU!

 

When you feel like you’ve had enough…call upon your tribe to get you through it. #MomGroups #YMCCommunity

Have you ever reached a point when your life is stretching you so thin, that you’re on the verge of breaking?

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The laundry and dishes just keep piling up instead of getting smaller. The dust bunnies are nearing the size of cats. Your dinner ideas are becoming less appetizing and the family dog won’t even touch the leftovers with a 10′ pole. The bathroom has become a petrie dish for germs and grossness. The kids are constantly fighting, pulling at you and the noise is reaching ear-splitting level. You’re tired and the last thing on your mind is having a little “Mommy and Daddy Time”.

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Do you feel alone with no one to talk to? You’re not alone. There are more Moms than you know out there who are feeling the EXACT same way.
You need to find a tribe of fellow Mommies that you can talk to, share your troubles, ask questions, get support and find your happy self again.
Go online, Google or search Facebook for Mom Groups in your area. They are there and if they aren’t, start your own. Chances are, you’re going to find that Mommies will be coming out of the woodwork looking for other Moms to connect with.
In 2009, when our daughter was born, I did just that. I Googled Mom Groups in and around my neighbourhood and low and behold “The Tri-Cities Moms Group” on Meetup.com, was the first one found.

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I can’t tell you how much the Moms that I’ve met in this group have helped me. Not only have our kids found friends and playmates, but I have connected with some pretty fabulous ladies who I can confide in when I’m feeling my most vulnerable, but also share in laughter during the good times. Getting out and having “Me Time” for Mom’s Nights Out, going for walks or spa dates or something as simple as a coffee, really makes a difference and helps this Mama keep her sanity when the universe appears to be closing in around me.

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Have you found your tribe of Mommy friends? How have they helped you through your good times and bad?