Thursday, January 28, 2016

2016 Reading Goals

I love to read.  When I am not busy with the kids or house stuff, you can normally find me curled up on the couch with a book.  Most of the time it's a romance novel, but this year I want to branch out and read other genres as well.

My goal for the year is to read at least 12 other books (in addition to my romance novels).  I tend to read 2 books a month, so this would up that to 3 (or more).  I have a list started below, and have already crossed 3 off of it this month 

  1. Girl on The Train
  2. Me Before You
  3. After You
  4. One Plus One
  5. Shopaholic To The Rescue
  6. Twilight Series
I would love to know what your favourite books are - I need some inspiration to finish adding to my list!

Monday, January 25, 2016

5 Ways To Keep Kids Entertained On Sick Days

When my kids are really ill, they lie on the couch and sleep while watching movies or shows - no entertaining needed.  Sometimes they are home for other reasons though (fever with no symptoms, better after a stomach bug but not able to return to school until 24 hours have passed etc) and on those occasions I need ways to keep them busy.

Friday, January 22, 2016

Mr. J and Clue

Mr. J loves to play board games with me.  We often play Monopoly, Game of Life, and Clue.  Clue is a recent favourite of his.  I was really glad when he reached an age that he could play it - as I have always really enjoyed it.

Often times after homework is done he will ask to play a game.  The last time he did, he got it all set up and we sat down to play.  He won.....I lost.  I had no idea what room it was, but he had 5 out of the 9 rooms so it was pretty easy for him to figure that part out!

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Unexpected Expenses

My microwave died this week.  It has been acting up for a few months, but this weekend it finally died completely.  I COULD get away without one, but it's so convenient to be able to thaw out bagels and muffins, and to warm up dinner if hubby gets home late.

I think everyone can agree that things break down and repairs or replacement of appliances often happen when the money just isn't there.  When my Jeep broke down for the second time and we had to put the repairs on our credit card I got serious with our short term savings.  I started transferring a small amount of money off every paycheque and leaving it in my savings account.  I hated the feeling of being stuck.

That being said, I know that many are in the position I found myself in with my jeep.  If you find yourself in need of some quick cash to replace an appliance or make a home repair, these tips might help you:
  • go through your closet and consign any clothing that you don't wear
  • find all the outgrown sports equipment (skates, cleats, helmets etc) that your kids have no use for anymore and sell them at a consignment store or through a buy/sell/trade group
  • clean out the toy room and sell anything that isn't getting played with anymore
  • find a 2nd job (not immediate money, but it can help to start a savings account)
  • shovel snow or cut grass - you can advertise on local facebook groups
I remember the awful feeling of not knowing where the money was going to come from, and I hope that these ideas can help you if you are feeling like that now.  Have you had unexpected repairs come up before?

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Date Night With Hubby

My hubby and I don't often get out for date nights.  We don't have any babysitters anymore, and finding one isn't easy.  We don't like to impose on our parents often, and tend to only ask for weddings and such.

Hubby is a comedy fan. We have seen Bill Cosby, Robin Williams, Howie Mandel and Jeff Foxworthy. When I found out that Jeff Dunham was coming to Ottawa, I knew that was going to be his Christmas gift.  I purchased two tickets, and the show was this past weekend.

His parents watched the kids for us, and when the show was over, we went out for supper.  It was really nice to spend time just the two of us, away from home.  We had a great night out, and it reminded me that we really should take the time to do it more often.

Do you have regular date nights with your partner?

Monday, January 18, 2016

Tales of Mommyhood Ongoing Giveaway Link Up

Welcome to the Tales of Mommyhood Giveaway Link Up.  This is an ongoing linky that will be updated every Monday.  

Thursday, January 14, 2016

2016 Good Things Box

I have seen many things floating around pinterest and facebook about a "Happiness Jar".  Basically you take a jar and label it with the year, and then as good things happen, or happy events, you write them down on slips of paper and place them in the jar.  On New Years Eve you sit down and open the jar and then read through all the wonderful things that happened throughout the year.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Grade 3 Science Project

grade 3 science project, muscular force, car, build a toy

Mr. J is in the 3rd grade and recently came home with a letter that he needed to build a toy.  Their science unit right now is on forces, and they were instructed to build a working toy.

When I asked what he wanted to build, he immediately said a car.  We brainstormed some ideas, and listed the materials that he would need for the project.

His first list was a box, some water bottles, glue and plastic lids.  He quickly realized that he needed something to hold the wheels on.  When hubby got home they raided his workshop and found some copper pipe that would work.

He measured everything and then they got to work building the car.  They tested the plastic bottle caps, but found that they didn't work with the copper pipe.  They did some more brainstorming to see what items he thought would work for wheels.  A lightbulb moment had him deciding that CD's would work.

He ran upstairs and found 4 CD's;  he chose to paint the box orange, and when the paint dried he pushed the pipe through the box and attached the wheels. They would not stay alone, and with some searching through the workshop he found some nuts that would help keep them in place.

He discovered that his car works by using muscular force to get the motion started - and he is super excited to present it to his class this week!  Some of the other kids made boats and mazes that use magnetic force.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Tales of Mommyhood Giveaway Link Up January 11th

Tales of Mommyhood, giveaways, linky, monday madness, contests, win, giveaway linky

I hope that everyone settled back into their routines last week.  The kids went back to school with very little protest - I think they were ready to go back!

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

8 Ways To Stay Active In Winter

I think everyone can agree that physical activity is extremely important for our health; getting kids active is easily done if you – as a parent – show them. That’s right – it is OUR responsibility as parents to ensure that our children are getting the appropriate amount of physical activity. I find it really easy to keep the kids active in the summer – walking to the park, going for bike rides, throwing/kicking around a ball in the backyard….but, then the weather turns colder and I don’t want to go outside…I want to hibernate in my nice warm house.

Monday, January 4, 2016

Tales of Mommyhood Giveaway Link Up

Tales of Mommyhood, giveaways, linky, monday madness, contests, win, giveaway linky

Happy New Year!  Today is the day that my kids head back to school and my hubby back to work after Christmas holidays.  Having everyone home for 2 weeks was a little bit of a shock to me - I am used to spending my days alone and doing as I please.  I definitely enjoyed the time we all had together (although it seemed that hubby and I spent more time apart and 1-1 with the kids, and then switching so that we had time with the other).

Friday, January 1, 2016

Goodbye 2015 - Hello 2016!

Happy New Year!  I hope that you had a safe and fun New Year's Eve!  We always stay home and enjoy it with the kids.  We play board games, watch movies and eat lots of munchies.  If we manage to stay awake, we watch the ball drop.

2015 was a pretty good year for us.  We took a family trip to Walt Disney World, had some great opportunities through the blog (staying at The Brookstreet Hotel, seeing Disney On Ice and Marvel Universe Live). I also REALLY enjoyed the Bloggers Fete event that I co-organized in August with 5 other bloggers to help us celebrate our blogiversaries!  It was the first time I helped to organize any kind of social media party, and it was a LOT of fun!

I am looking forward to what 2016 has to bring.  I would like to say thank you to all my readers.  It's because of you that I am able to offer the reviews and giveaways that I do, and I truly appreciate all the support you give.  Commenting on the blog and social media posts, sharing content - it doesn't go unnoticed or unappreciated!

I truly hope that 2015 was a great year for you, and wish you all the best in the year ahead!