Here’s looking at you, kid. #YMCCommunity

When was the last time you had your eyes checked?

Eye exam

Hubby and I went in at the end of the year for our eye exams. I thoroughly enjoyed getting the puff of air blown into my widened eyelids as I flinched uncontrollably awaiting the inevitable. And when they put those fab drops in my eyes that made my pupils dilate (hubby calls these “sex eyes”) and I could barely see because the world was so intensely bright…yeah, those!

At least they gave me a complimentary pair of sunglasses…

Sexy sunglasses

We make sure that we go every two years to stay up to date on our eye health. We both wear glasses now in our “old age” and I have a family history of cataracts and macular degeneration, so I am pretty anal about keeping a close eye (pun intended) on mine.

Speaking of which, have your kids been in to see the Optometrist yet?

Recently, our daughter came home with a letter from school from the BC Doctors of Optometry. It was about the Eye See…Eye Learn® program.

With this program, children born in 2009 and currently enrolled in Kindergarten in a participating school district are eligible for a complimentary eye exam and, if needed, one pair of FREE eye glasses from a participating Doctor of Optometry.

For more information about the Eye See…Eye Learn® program, visit http://www.optometrists.bc.ca and click on Fribbit, the Eye See…Eye Learn® icon.

Fribbit

Surviving the “Man Cold” without losing it! #YMCCommunity

So, hubby woke up the other day with the dreaded “Man Cold”!

The Man Cold

If you don’t know what this is…it’s a regular cold, but it’s “man-sized”.

By this, I mean, every aspect about the cold is exaggerated. Their temperature is “like a million degrees”, their heads are “practically exploding”, the bed is the only comfortable and warm place to lay, the kids are excruciatingly louder than normal, their energy is so drained that getting food or drink is nearly impossible, but going to the bathroom is easily achieved as long as there’s a clear path and no one disturbs him en route.

I figured out how to sort things out before the “milking it” got out of hand. As soon as the grumpy bear appears from his den, I immediately hand him a couple of Daytime Cold & Flu gel capsules and a glass of water.

Daytime Cold & Flu medicine

Wait about a half an hour and you are free of one more kid to take care of.

There, of course, is the lingering cough and runny nose still, but hand him a box of tissues and a handful of lozenges, and when afternoon nap time comes around, send him and the little ones off for a peaceful 2 hour break for Mom, so you can sip your cup of tea and catch up on your own stuff in peace.

Enjoying a cup of tea

Then at bedtime, hook him up with a couple Nightime Cold & Flu capsules, so you both can get a restful sleep. It would also be fantastic if they came with a snore suppressant as well, ’cause Cold Snores are the equivalent to a thunderstorm RIGHT. BESIDE. YOUR. HEAD, accompanied with the “Breath of Death”!

How do you handle the “Man Cold” when it rears it’s ugly head in your home?

Are your kids getting the proper sleep they need? #KidFitPillow

I remember when I was a kid, my first pillow was the “dead pillow”.

The "dead pillow"

This pillow became mine when my Mum retired one of her old worn out ones. It was flatter than a pancake and really couldn’t be classified as a pillow. I don’t know if they had the regulations for pillows for kids like we do nowadays, but chances are, since I don’t even recall using a car seat or a seat belt back then, the guidelines for kids and pillows was probably pretty grey.

When my husband and I felt that our daughter was ready for her own pillow, I decided to carry on with tradition. I gave her my “dead pillow”.

I’ve never seen a kid-sized pillow anywhere…until now.

KidFitPillow

The KidFit Pillow was designed to fit and properly support a child’s head and neck as they grow. It is built around a top-quality, perforated memory foam with holes that allow for airflow and better temperature regulation. This is great for us as both our kids are mini furnaces and ALWAYS sweat at night, even in the dead of Winter. The cover of the memory foam is removable and washable and the cover for the pillow itself, is ultra-plush, hypo-allergenic, and machine washable.

KidFit Pillows

Our daughter has been using her KidFit Pillow for almost a year now and she has slept so much better! Now our little Dude will be upgrading to a big kid bed, so I’d like to get him one as well.

The KidFit Pillow comes in 3 Stages:

Stage 1: for kids 2-4yrs old

Stage 2: for kids 5-7yrs old

Stage 3: for kids 8-11yrs old

Your kids sit in car seats made for them, so why would you let your kids not sleep on a pillow just for kids?

The KidFit Pillow is a recent PTPA Winner.

PTPA Winner

My Quest for Happiness…Day 3 #100DaysOfGratitude #YMCCommunity

This morning I woke up with a million things going through my mind…

Wide awake in bed

As most Moms do, my To-Do List was being written as I lay in bed, an hour before I really need to get up. My body was still tired, but my brain was saying, “Up and at ’em, sister!” Funny enough, I actually felt rested.

My back has been bothering me for the past several days, so my regular working out has been way-layed and the Halloween candy bowl keeps whispering to me, “You must eat me so the kids don’t!” I’ve been pretty religious about pitching a handful or so of the naughty snacks everyday, so the misery will end sooner.

As soon as I’m feeling 90% better! I will be activating my GoodLife Fitness membership and get this ass in gear. We have a tropical vaycay planned for Easter and I’d like my tan lines not to include a line where my shorts end.

Photo credit: Girl Next Door Fashion

Photo credit: Girl Next Door Fashion

So for today’s gratitude, I give you these:

1) I am grateful for my comfy bed.

*it is here that my body is most comfortable and I get my best thinking done.

2) I am grateful for my motivation to get exercise and be fit.

*the members of my Facebook Fitness Group would call me a hypocrite if I only posted motivation for others without committing to it myself.

3) I am grateful for laundry detergent.

* you make my world right again by eliminating the funky stank that permeates my workout gear.

This post was written as a part of the GoodLife Fitness Blogger Ambassador Program, however all opinions expressed are my own.

My Quest for Happiness…Day 1 #100DaysOfGratitude #YMCCommunity

I’ve come to realize that I am miserable…

Hello...my name is Miserable

Hubby has told me this, but I’ve been in denial. I know I’m not happy and this has been going on for far too long. I’ve always looked at the worst case scenario in things and had “the cup is half empty” mentality.

It started after our daughter was born five years ago and I just have not been able to shake the doom and gloom away. Being sad, angry and jealous really takes you away of from enjoying the many fantastic things that occur in your daily life.

So taking a page from several friends and finally listening to my husband…I will be removing my head from my ass and taking the time each day to recognize and appreciate the good things that are in my life.

Gratitude

So here goes…

Day 1 of 100 Days of Gratitude

1) I am grateful for my husband and children.

*they stick around regardless of my mood, give me unconditional love and eat my failed attempts at new recipes.

2) I am grateful for my health.

*there are people close to me who are not as fortunate and I apologize for taking this for granted.

3) I am grateful for my sense of humour.

*I enjoy a good laugh and I believe that laughter is the best medicine.

I’ll be the first to admit that whenever I have seen others posting about gratitude, it has irritated me. It seemed preachy and I dislike being told what to do.

But now, with hat in hand, I must push my pride aside and ask for strength to keep me focused and strong to make me a better person.

Happiness

Keeping the Kids Clean…Naturally. {Giveaway} #CocoAndTini

Kids are messy…

Got into the felts again

Whether it’s food, markers, sweat, mud puddles or poopy bums, they are like magnets for grime. It’s especially fantastic when during dinner (after eating with their hands), they decide to comb their little mitts through their hair. Or while trying to avoid being smacked by a flying toy car, your daughter’s pigtails get dipped in the ketchup glob on her plate.

Messy face

Not a day goes by without several wardrobe changes and the occasional “bath worthy” clean up. I’ve had my fair share of “natural disasters”, that it’s sometimes easier to hose the wee ones down rather than trying to wipe the works down with a pile of baby wipes. Better for the environment too!

Sandy pants

When it come to our kids, we strive to find products that are more natural than the stuff our parents used when we were kids. Not that our parents knew what we know now about the harsh chemicals used in bathing products and skin care for our little ones. We want them clean, smelling good and safe from the nasty chemicals.

Coco & Tini

Coco & Tini have a fantastic line of cleaning products for babies and kids. Their Body Wash, Bubble Bath, Conditioning Detangler and Shampoo all contain 100% natural-source ingredients and are dermatologist recommended. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate or Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Parabens, Propylene Glycol, Artificial Preservatives or Artificial Fragrances will never be found in any of Coco & Tini’s products.

We LOVE the smell of these products! The shampoo really get a nice lather and a little goes a long way. Our daughter has long hair, so every time her hair is washed, the fight against tangles is a tearful journey. The conditioning detangler is FANTASTIC at preventing those naughty little tangles from occurring. Using the body wash with a wash cloth really gets the grime off of our little dirt machines and leaves their skin soft and smelling fantastic. The bubble bath is a bit tricky…because they use natural ingredients in their products, it’s pretty hard to get a “mountain of bubbles” to form in the tub. They recommend squirting the bubble bath onto a “dry” tub where the water will hit when it comes out of the faucet. This will give the best bubble result, but you will still not end up with a massive amount. Not to worry, the kiddos will still enjoy playing in the tub with the bubbles that do form. Not to mention, the cute characters that adorn the bottles; Coco & Tini, Woosh & Hoopy (Shampoo), Bingo & Lance (Body Wash), Daphne & Lila (Conditioning Detangler), and Dash & Squiggs (Bubble Bath).

To purchase Coco & Tini products, you can do so through the website or find a local retailer through their handy dandy Store Locator button.

THE GIVEAWAY

Coco & Tini have provided Raincity Parent with a 4pc Travel Set of the Shampoo, Detangling Conditioner, Body Wash and Bubble Bath to giveaway to one lucky reader! The giveaway runs from October 31st-November 7th, 2014 and is open to residents of the Lower Mainland of Vancouver, BC and the Fraser Valley. Please enter via the Rafflecopter link below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Coco & Tini

Potty training boys! Where do I start? {Giveaway} #LilMarc #YMCCommunity

When our son was born, it was a fantastic surprise!

We didn’t find out the sex of either of our babies while I was pregnant because we wanted it to be a surprise! How many of those do you get in your lifetime.

Baby On Board

Our daughter came along first and we were so lucky that she was such a good baby, toddler and preschooler.

Potty training went pretty smoothly for us, with minimal hiccups. She was diaper-free by 4 years old.

Sitting on the potty

As soon as the Little Dude arrived, my first thought was, “What am I going to do with that?!” Referring to his penis.

I grew up in a house full of girls and had zero experience with boy’s “bits and pieces”.

Changing his diapers was a whole new experience.

I have been honoured by being “hosed down” a few times, but I must admit, clean up is pretty easy. No crevices for poop to hide in 😉

He has now passed the 2 year mark and it’s time to pull on his big boy underpants. Little Dude needs to be introduced to the potty.

Boy peeing fountain

But boys are different. They stand to pee. It’s OK to sit to pee too, but why not show him how to pee like a big boy and Daddy. But when you’re only 36″ tall, standing to pee in the potty isn’t that easy. You have to pull out the step stool, and get your pants down before the front of the toilet and floor get hosed down.

Lil Marc

Searching the interweb, I came across Lil Marc.

Lil Marc is similar to a urinal that you would find in public restrooms, only potty training sized!

Lil Marc Training Urinal

Lil Marc Training Urinal

It can be used as a free-standing unit or you can mount it to the wall. Simple to use and easy to empty and clean.

Potty training our little guy is going to be a feat in itself, but I think it will be a fun and exciting time for him with the help of Lil Marc!

THE GIVEAWAY!!

Lil Marc has generously offered to giveaway a Lil Marc Training Urinal to one lucky Raincity Parent reader! This giveaway runs from October 8th-17th, 2014 and is open to residents of Canada and the US only. Enter via the Rafflecopter link below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway