Saturday, September 28, 2013

Release Your Inner Girl - event in OTTAWA

Join author Tina O'Connor for a girls only event this Thursday, October 3rd. The  "Release Your Inner Girl" tour will be making a stop at Adorit - and you are invited!  Join Tina and other ladies for a night filled with wine, appetizers and a goody bag!

When: Thursday, October 3, 2013

Where: Adorit , 153 York Street "An eco-friendly store in the Market area."

Time: 7pm

Cost: $20 (tickets can be pre-purchased here)

Friday, September 27, 2013

What's For Lunch? Week 4

The first month of school is done - hard to believe we are heading into October now! Here is a look at week 4 of my sons lunches! (Click for week 3)

Leftover Spaghetti (thermos)
Raspberry swords
Mini banana muffins
Carrot Sticks
Mini pumpkin shaped cheese sandwiches
Yogurt tube
Water to drink

Whole Wheat bagel with cheese
Mini zucchini muffin
Carrot Sticks
Nutri grain bar
Yogurt tube
Apple Sauce
Water to drink

Cooked Noodles (thermos)
Carrot Sticks
Mini Banana Muffins
Ritz Crackers
Water to drink

Ham Sandwich (heart shaped)
Mini Zucchini muffins
Carrot Sticks
Yogurt Tube
Mini Bear paw oatmeal cookies
water to drink

Kolbassa, crackers and cheese
Strawberries and Raspberries
Nutri grain bar
Apple Sauce
Water to drink

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

How Moms Manage Family Finances

I am not sure exactly how it happened, but somehow I ended up being the one to take charge of our finances. I pay all of the monthly bills, make sure to transfer money from our main account to our savings accounts and the children's accounts. I always make sure that there is enough in the chequing account to cover any of our automatic withdrawals (mortgage, insurance etc) and check balances on credit cards to make sure that none of our accounts have been compromised.

It’s really common for unexpected expenses to pop up (and often at the WORST times), but not all families have the ability to save for them in advance. Being a SAHM our finances are tight –we recently were faced with a large car repair that was a surprise; luckily, due to my money management, we had the money to cover the bill (although it meant dipping into our DisneyWorld savings); many people look at loans as an option when sudden costs come up which they weren't prepared for (this could be due to a job loss, or a large home repair bill that cannot wait).

As a natural spender, it definitely took me some time to get into the habit of saving; I had to be really strict with myself.  The first thing I did was to set a goal for our savings, and I dedicated 2 accounts to this savings.  Halifax bank has some good deals if you are in the market for a new financial product.  One account was for DisneyWorld, and the other was for long term savings.  Every week, I transfer over 10% of my husband’s paycheque to our long term savings, but our Disney savings has to come from other places.

I have a container on my fridge, and I put extra change into it – when it gets full, I roll the money, cash it in at the bank and deposit it to our Disney account.  When the boys have outgrown toys, I sell them (either online or through a consignment store) and the money goes into the dedicated Disney account.  There are many ways for you to start saving, and if you are looking for ideas this article has some great tips.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Home Made Soup - Recipe Round Up

Home Made Potato Soup
With the cooler weather moving in, I thought it would be a good time to post a soup recipe round up.  I love having a nice bowl of home made soup on a cold day (although, I can eat soup all year round!)  Here are a few recipes that I have come across:

Chicken Soup - Tales of Mommyhood
Easy Homemade Chicken Soup - The Knit Wit By Shair
Easy Lentil Soup - Snymed
Hamburger Soup - Tales of Mommyhood
Meatball soup - The Knit Wit By Shair
Roasted Yellow Beet & Sweet Potato Soup - The Knit Wit By Shair
Chicken and Lime Soup - Moms and Munchkins
Leek, Potato and Carrot Soup - My Little Review Corner
Cheesy Cauliflower Soup - Kidsumers
Carrot Soup - Our Family World
Celery Cream Soup - Our Family World
Red Lentil Soup - Our Family World
Stuffed Pepper Soup - Mom Vs. The Boys
Chicken Taco Soup - Mom Vs. The Boys
Curried Butternut Squash and Kale Soup - Family Food and Travel
Broccoli and Spinach Soup - Family Food and Travel
French Onion Soup - Ottawa Mommy Club
Ham & Lentil Soup - Mmm Is for Mommy
Beef Barley and Mushroom Soup - Mmm is for mommy
Grandmothers Stew (boiled dinner) - A Busy Mommy

Monday, September 23, 2013

Giveaway Linky September 23

Welcome to the Tales of Mommyhood giveaway linky. Please remember to list end date, eligibility and prize name!

Good luck to those that enter

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Couponing and Coupon Swaps

I am a member of a local coupon group on facebook.  New deals are posted when there are coupons available for order or for print.  We are able to make coupon trades with other members, and they also organize coupon swaps a few times a year.

Last night, I attended my first ever swap.  I hadn't been able to make it previously, but if I am completely honest it was more that I was unsure of how they worked, and that made me nervous.

Over the last few months, I have met both of the admins in person (not through couponing activities, but actually completely unrelated events with our children).  Top that with a friend wanting to go, and I was comfortable.

I was VERY glad to have a coupon binder all set to go.  I emptied it of my personal coupons that I will use, because those are ones that I am not willing to trade - and had 4 pages of coupons that I was looking to trade. I only made 2 trades (i got rid of 3 coupons, and received 2) but I found 4 or 5 that I will use on the freebie tables - so that was a plus!

I am already looking forward to the next swap!

Have you been to a coupon swap before? What did you think?

Friday, September 20, 2013

What's For Lunch? - Week 3

Week 3 of What's For Lunch? To catch up on last week - click HERE

Mini go Yogurt
Carrot sticks (small container)
Fruit swords (raspberries, blackberries and grapes)
Goldfish Crackers
Bologna sandwich (gingerbread boy and bat)
Water to drink

Kolbasa, Cheese and Crackers
2 mini banana muffins
nutri grain bar
granola bar
apple sauce (not pictured)
water to drink

Day 3 - no picture

Cheese Sandwich
Apple Sauce
2 mini zucchini muffins

Cooked Chow Mein Noodles (in thermos)
Green Pepper and Carrots
Zucchini Muffin
Apple Slices
Water to Drink

Heart shaped turkey sandwich
shredded cheese
carrots and green peppers
mini banana muffins
mini coffee crisp for treat friday
water to drink

What did your kids take for lunch this week? I would love to know -always on the lookout for new ideas!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Mistura Beauty Solutions - Review

I started wearing make-up regularly when I was 12; it was something that I never left the house without putting on.  My mom was smart, she took me to a make up counter and had a cosmetologist teach me how to put it on properly.  This meant that I never had the raccoon eyes you often see on young girls, I did't overdo my eye shadow or my blush, and I was given colours that suited my skin tone.

I never would have imagined a time would come where I would NOT be wearing make up constantly. However, that time DID come. I became a mom - and mom's are busy.  It was hard enough to work in a shower in those first few months, taking time to put make up on was the last thing on my mind.

Over the summer, I was contacted to review the Mistura Essentials Kit.  Right away I was interested - a 6 in 1 product? What a great time saver.

The Kit contains:
  • moisturizer
  • Vitamin E Lip Balm
  • a mini compact (which acts as concealer, foundation, blush, bronzer and can be used for eyes and lips)
  • Kubuki brush
I was pleased with how the moisturizer absorbed into my skin - it didn't leave me with a heavy/greasy feeling (which is always a plus!). The Vitamin E Lip Balm left my lips feeling moisturized (and we are just entering into the cooler weather and my lips end up chapped and dry - this will be perfect to keep in my purse). 

The brush - not really sure how to describe the brush - it is awesome.  It is so full, and soft.  So, so soft.  When I was applying the powder, I was really amazed at the softness of the brush.

The Powder - the claim is "Our flagship product has revolutionized how women feel about makeup. With results possible in under one minute, our amazing “magic powder” offers a perfect airbrushed finish every time!  Our all-in-one formula self-adjusts to ALL SKIN TONES and eliminates the need to use a concealer, foundation, blush and bronzer and can also be used a lip and eye color."

I will admit, I was very skeptical.  My skin is definitely flawed - I am prone to acne, and coverage is always something I am looking for when I buy a new product.  When I heard that this would not only act as a concealer but foundation and blush - I didn't believe it.

However, I am happy to say that it holds up to it's claims.  After using the powder only (with the Kubuki brush - seriously, I cannot tell you how much I love this brush) I was super happy with the results.  The colour suited my skin, gave good coverage and left me feeling great when I looked into the mirror (please keep in mind that the lighting in the room is NOT very good)

I think what I like most about the powder - when you touch your face, it is soft and smooth. It doesn't feel (or look) like you have foundation/concealer on. I often found that concealers didn't do much CONCEALING of the problem areas, more so drew more attention to it.  If you have dry skin, it can often appear even more flaky with make up - but that is not the case with this!

**I was sent the above product as compensation for this post; all opinions are honest and belong to Tales of Mommyhood. Your opinion/experience may vary**

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

4th Annual Trip to Mountain Orchards for #applepicking

A few weeks ago I wrote about our wonderful visits to Mountain Orchards; that post preceded our most recent visit, which was this past weekend.

This year we went on a Sunday morning - we got there around 930, and it was not too busy.  By the time we finished our apple picking and enjoying our picnic, there was a wait for the tractors (they have 2 on the go). In our previous visits, we have never NOT been able to get on the wagon immediately, this time we had a short wait, there were 9 of us and that was too many to make the cut for the first one!

The kids had such a wonderful time! This was the first year that Mr. K really "got it". He was so excited to find the perfect apple and roll it off the tree!

mountain orchard apple picking

When we were loaded up with more apples than I think I will be able to use - we headed to the picnic tables (which are covered by tents) and had a quick lunch. Afterwards, HeartMom and I took the older 4 kids, and for the first time walked the nature trail.  The trail is 3/4KM, and it is a nice, easy walk.  The 4 kids and us 2 moms really enjoyed the trail and the crisp air!  So glad we decided to give it a go this year - although next year, I will make sure to put on running shoes, and not flip flops.

The kids enjoyed the time with their friends, we enjoyed the time with OUR friends, and can't wait until next year to go back.

You may wonder what I am going to do with all the apples we picked? As of now, I am 3/4 done the first bag - I have made 2 apple pies (frozen) 2 apple crisps (one frozen, one eaten) one apple cake (eaten) 2 dozen apple cinnamon cupcakes (making our way through them). Hubby takes them to work, the boys and I snack on them during the day and I also like to have an after dinner snack of an apple with skor dip!

I plan on making 2 more pies for the freezer, and a few more apple crisps as well!  Now tell me - what is YOUR favorite way to eat apples?

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Tasty Tuesday - Time in the Kitchen

apple cinnamon caramel cupcakes
Apple Cinnamon Cupcakes with Cinnamon ButterCream and Caramel Drizzle *click on picture to go to recipe* 

This past Sunday, I did something I love. I spent most of the day in my kitchen.  I love the kitchen; I love to cook, I love to bake; I LOVE when I have the chance to do both, child free.

Don't get me wrong, I enjoy sharing my love of the kitchen with my kids, but it is a much different experience when I am alone. It's not quite as chaotic - and it actually relaxes me.

3 years ago, our deep freezer died. We decided not to replace it at the time, and made do with the fridge freezer.  Hubby and I have talked many times about replacing it, but couldn't justify the money.

Since getting into price matching, I haven't been able to take advantage of all the great deals on meat/poultry because I did not have the space for it.  For my birthday, hubby bought me a deep freezer!!!

I was so excited when I did my next grocery shop, and was able to stock up on ground beef that was on sale for $4.54/kg - it was great.  On Sunday, I had lots on my to do list.

2 dozen mini zucchini chocolate chip muffins
2 dozen apple cinnamon cupcakes (some with cinnamon cream cheese icing, and others with cinnamon buttercream drizzled with caramel)
1 Shepherds pie
1 large batch of Hamburger Soup (split into 1 family portion, and 2 individual portions)
1 apple crisp

The next day I added in 2 dozen mini banana chocolate chip muffins (I really like having the mini muffins in the freezer, great to throw into lunches or for a quick snack!)

#TheCroodsDVD - Prize Pack Giveaway

Read through the feature below, and then enter to win a prize pack including The Croods on Blu ray and a small Belt plush!  We missed out on seeing The Croods in theater, and are super excited to have a chance to watch it at home!

Daddy Dearest

Win the Croods Blu-ray

Available on Digital HD September 15 and Blu-ray & DVD October 1

The relationship between a father and his daughter is a very precious thing. Some of the most touching scenes from movie history are the loving moments between dads and daughters. In The Croods, we watched as Eep and Grug slowly come to realize how much they truly love each other. Take a look at five of the most memorable dad and daughter moments in movie history. 

Join the Croods on the journey of a lifetime in the epic comedy-adventure that "has the magical wonder of How To Train Your Dragon" - Jake Hamilton (Fox-TV). When their cave is destroyed, the Croods set out to explore a spectacular landscape filled with fantastic creatures, strange surprises…and a whole new world of adventure!

Eep and Grug - The Croods

Teenagers always go through that phase of life where they feel that they are being smothered by their parents. Eep is definitely feeling these emotions when her over-protective dad keeps her under tight boundaries.  But it turned out that Eep and Grug were more alike than they realized. Eep’s heart is broken when she thinks she lost her opportunity to tell her dad how much she loves him. In a very memorable moment, Eep and Grug are reunited and our hearts melt as we watch them embrace in a great big word that rhymes with Grug… a hug!

Charlie & Bella Swan - The Twilight Saga

Throughout the Twilight saga, there are multiple adorably awkward father-daughter moments shared between Charlie and Bella. Charlie may not always know exactly what he is doing, but there is no denying that he is an excellent father! Our favorite Charlie and Bella memory is the day of the wedding. Before heading off on her honeymoon, Charlie tells Bella how much she means to him and the two share a meaningful moment.

Bryan and Kim Mills - Taken

Every girl wants a father who makes them feel safe and is willing to protect them from any kind of harm that comes their way. Bryan Mills represents the ultimate dad in Taken and Taken 2 as he takes down anyone who comes between him and his daughter. Kim is lucky to have such a fierce father figure in her life and their relationship benefits from the difficult situation that she faces.

George & Annie Banks - Father of the Bride

In Father of the Bride, George might be having a hard time giving up his little girl, but in the end he accepts the wedding as a reality and the two have a major bonding moment.  On the night before her wedding, Annie and George play basketball in the driveway and hundreds of female viewers thought back to the times they played sports with their dad as a kid.

Graham, Sophie, and Olivia - The Holiday

Being a single dad and raising two daughters is no easy task. In The Holiday, Graham seems to be one of the greatest single parents we’ve ever seen. From being Mr. Napkin Head with his two adorable daughters to building a dreamy tent with fluffy pillows and hand-cut stars, Graham goes the extra step to make sure Sophie and Olivia have a great childhood. We love the moment when we find out that the father and his daughters call themselves “the three musketeers.”

Here is a cute printable colouring sheet of Belt! 
Belt colour page the croods
(to print, right click on picture and choose print) more printables HERE

Giveaway Time!
Use the rafflecopter form below to enter for your chance to win The Croods on Blu-ray and a small Belt plush!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

#TheCroodsDVD - printable activity sheets

Here are a few more printable activity/colouring sheets. To print, right click on each picture and choose print!

Friday, September 13, 2013

What's For Lunch? Week 2

Week 2 of What's For Lunch?  We are missing Day 2, because Mr. J had an appointment with his ENT (and we found out he will NOT be having surgery) and a dental appointment - so we skip from Day 1 to Day3.  Click to see What's For Lunch? Week 1

Whole Wheat bagel with cheese
Mini Go Yogurt
Celery Sticks
Nutri Grain Bar
Water to drink

Kolbasa, Cheese String and Crackers
Banana Loaf
Apple Sauce
Yogurt tube (frozen)
Nutrigrain Bar
Apple Juice and Water to drink

Leftover Chicken Stir Fry (noodles on the side)
Crackers and Cheese
Yogurt Tube
Orange Juice and Water to Drink

Heart Shaped Cheese Sandwich
Carrots and Broccoli
Triscuit Crackers
Mini Go Yogurt
Banana Loaf
Treat Friday - Fruit Snacks

Friday, September 6, 2013

What's For Lunch? Week 1

school lunch ideas

This is a new feature on Tales of Mommyhood, and will be published on Fridays.  It is a recap of what my son took for lunch during the week.

I know it isn't easy to come up with ideas all the time (especially if you have kids that are not sandwich eaters, or that may be "picky".

Week 1:

Cheese Sandwich cut as dinosaur (wrapped in blue sandwich wrapper)
Strawberry and Blackberry Swords
Gold Fish Crackers
Nutri-grain bar
Fruit Snacks
Juice Box and Water Bottle

Kolbassa, cheese and crackers
Apple Sauce
Cheese String
Banana Loaf
Juice Box and Water Bottle
Turkey Sandwich - heart shaped
Mni-go Yogurt
Celery Sticks
Cheese String
Nutrigrain Bar
Apple Sauce
Juice Box and Water

Dinosaur Ham Sandwich
Raspberry and Blackberry Swords
Green Pepper Strips
Gold Fish Crackers
Apple Sauce
Water to drink

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Aviva Community Fund competition is BACK!

This post brought to you by Aviva Community Fund. All opinions are 100% mine.
The Aviva Community Fund competition is back for another round!  Have you heard of the competition before? Last year was the first time I had seen anything about it.  Aviva Insurance sponsors the competition.  Starting August 15 2013 and running until November 25, 2013 you have the chance to submit an idea for a comminity improvement project (could be anything from a community/school playground or a shelter for orphaned animals - whatever you think would benefit YOUR community).
aviva_lincoln lions_1 photo 01-Lions_vote_zps1e0b006b.jpg
Once your idea is submitted, voters will have the chance to vote for the ideas they like the most.  The finalists are based on the most number of votes - so the more people you tell about your project, the more likely it is to become a finalist.
 photo 3d3fd516-e5e6-4359-9b79-7cd211a37277_zpse10f337a.jpg
What are you waiting for? Do you have a great idea to help enhance your community? Head on over and submit your idea and then tell all your friends/family/co-workers and neighbours to vote for it! Spread the word - the more votes the better chance your idea will win a portion of the $1,00,000 that is up for grabs! For more information Like Aviva Community Fund on Facebook or Follow @avivacf on twitter.
I am excited to check out the ideas that have been submitted this year. Last year, a school in my community was nominated for a new playground - they didn't win, but they did make it into the 2nd or 3rd round.
aviva_lincoln lions_3 photo 03-photo-bosco_zps8dfe236a.jpg

Visit Sponsor's Site

WW: Back to School

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

First Day of School

Today marks the first day of school for MANY school boards, ours included.  For weeks I have seen countdowns on facebook from parents, or watched interviews on the news and all these parents cannot wait for the kids to be back in school.  I don't fall into that category.

I am sad.  We had such a wonderful summer, filled with great memories, new friends and lots of fun. I am not ready for that to be over.  I actually ENJOY the summer and school breaks where he is home with me, and I know that Mr. K is going to be sad not having him home most of the time either.

I know he will be just fine at school, but this being the first year he is all day is really tugging at my heart for some reason - I realize that he is growing up, and he won't be with me forever; but for whatever reason, while I know that HE is ready, I am not.

I am fully prepared to cry my way home from the school after dropping him off - I will make sure that he doesn't see my tears - that's the great thing about sunglasses!