Monday, June 27, 2016

June 27th Monday Madness Giveaway Linky

Happy Monday everyone. This was another HOT weekend for us. It was also a busy one. Mr. J had karate, hubby was putting a new roof on my moms shed on Saturday. Sunday I had a get together with some friends (which was long overdue) and the kiddies, and Mr. K had a birthday party to attend.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

End Of Year Teacher Gifts

Teacher gifts can often stress parents out. They worry about what to buy, if they should buy a gift, how much to spend and often put a lot of thought behind what is chosen.  I don't think that teacher gifts are necessary, but I do like to give them a little something at Christmas and end of year to let them know how much we appreciate them.  I don't spend a lot of money, it's normally only a $5 gift card along with a note.

This year I decided to do something a little different.  I am a member of many facebook groups, and in one of them another mom was asking for suggestions.  I always stay away from gifting items that take up space - I look at it that if EACH student gifted them the same item, they wouldn't be able to keep all 20 +. As cute as the little planters are, and the pencil signs with their name on it, you only need 1. If I have the idea, it's quite probable other parents will as well. I typically do a gift card, but one of the moms said that she went to the store and purchased food platters (fruits and veggies etc) and dropped them off for the staff.

I thought this was such a wonderful idea.  I always get a card for the admin staff as well as my kids teachers, but they have contact with most of the staff for various things.  I decided to do the same thing.

Last week I went to the store in the afternoon while the kids were at school. I bought a veggie platter, fruit platter, cheese and pepperettes, a cinnamon cake, pita and dip and I also made some home made cookies to go with everything.

I bought a card and wrote a note to the staff thanking them for all their hard work over the last year (we are fortunate to have an amazing group of educators and support staff) and wishing them a great summer.

The next day, the kids and I packed it all up and dropped it off at the office before school started.   I was so glad that the suggestion had been given in that group. This will now be my go to gift for the end of the year.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Summer Vacation Is Almost Upon Us

Summer vacation photo

We are nearing the end of the school year - hard to believe it's been almost 10 months since the first day of school.  We made it through, and now it's time to for a break.  I am so happy that I get to have this time off with my kids. I love spending time with them and creating memories, but I must admit that I am a little worried about this summer.  Most of Mr. J's friends are in daycare, which means there really isn't anyone his age to play with.  My 2, when left together for extended periods of time, do not get along. At all.  There is often bloodshed or injuries requiring ice because they just want to "play".  Inevitably, one of them (normally Mr. J) takes things too far and someone gets hurt.

Since I am home, they are home.  I send them to daycamp one or two weeks (normally once in July and once in August to try and break up the summer a little), but it's still a LOT of together time.  We have made our summer bucket list, and many of the items on the list are things we will do more than once.

I still fear for my sanity though.  I have some friends that are home with their kids (same or similar ages) so I am hoping that maybe we can plan some picnics or outings together to help fill in some of our gaps.

There aren't enough kids this age on the street for me to be comfortable with just sending them out to play in the morning and having them home for dinner.

Luckily my mother is doing much better than last summer, and my mother-in-law won't be as busy this summer either - so hopefully they will get some time in with their grandparents which was really rare last summer.

So, summer vacation - do you LOVE it or HATE it and what do you have planned for your kids this summer?

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Zootopia - Perfect For Family Movie Night

Zootopia is now available on Blu ray and DVD.  It is a perfect film to feature at your next family movie night.  There is something for every age group.  There are a few scenes that might be disturbing to younger children, but would depend on the personality of your kids. Mine were fine with it.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Summer 2016 Bucket List

Each summer, the kid and I sit down and write a list of what we would like to do over the 9 weeks that they are home.  Some of the ideas are quick and easy, and others are more time consuming.

The kids are at home with me all summer, except for 1-2 weeks of day camp. This summer they will do 1 week (mornings only) of vacation bible school in July, and 1 week of Pedalheads camp in August.

Monday, June 20, 2016

June 20th Monday Madness Giveaway Linky

Happy Monday everyone. Hard to believe we are coming up to the end of June. School will be over in a week and a half. Time goes so fast. This weekend was a H.O.T. one.  Saturday afternoon the kids had a water fight with a few of the neighbourhood kids. Always a blast for them.  It was so much fun listening to the shouts and giggles.

If you are a blogger, feel free to list any open giveaways you have on your blog. Make sure to list the prize, end date and country eligibility (CAN/US/WW) any listed without this information will be deleted.

If you are linking up, I would appreciate if you would re-tweet the following - it will help to get more exposure for us all

kids board gamespirates leaguewrite letter to disney charactergiveaway

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Kung Fu Panda 3 Available June 28th {giveaway}

The lovable Po is back with his friends for a 3rd installment in the Kung Fu Panda series.  Available now on Digital HD, and June 28th on Blu ray.
"Po and the Furious Five are back in the hilarious, critically acclaimed hit film your whole family will love! When Po discovers a secret village of fun-loving, clumsy pandas, he must train them to defeat Kai, a supernatural villain who threatens to destroy Kung Fu."
How would you like to win a copy of the film on Blu ray for your family?  All you have to do is enter using the giveaway tools form below! Open to Canadian and US residents that are 18+. Void where prohibited.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Save The Date! #BloggersFete Is BACK This August!

Last year was the very first #BloggersFete event. We had so much fun that we decided to make it an annual shindig, and it will be back this August. There have been a few small changes in the co-host department, but we are sure to have a wonderful time.  Mark your calendars for August 1-10th if you want to participate.

#BloggersFete16 Co-hosts:

Ashley Picco Tales of Mommyhood
Bonnie Way - The Koala Mom
Susanne Rudge - Maple Mouse Mama
Margarita Ibbot - DownshiftingPRO
Ladena Racine - My Baby Stuff 

#BloggersFete16 will start with our party posts and blog linky going live on August 1st (will run until August 10th), a kickoff twitter party on August 2nd at 8pm ET, an Instagram loop giveaway, and will wrap up on August 10th with a Facebook party.

We are lucky to have some great party sponsors:

If you are interested in sponsoring the event in any way, please send me an email with #BloggersFete in the subject, or get in touch with one of the other co-hosts.

Remember to keep the dates in mind, and hope to see you partying with us for #BloggersFete16!

Monday, June 13, 2016

June 13th Monday Madness Giveaway Linky

Happy Monday everyone. We seem to have lost our beautiful weather, and reverted back to late fall temperatures.  We had a great weekend, despite the rain and cold - you can read about it here on the weekend recap.

If you are a blogger, feel free to list any open giveaways you have on your blog. Make sure to list the prize, end date and country eligibility (CAN/US/WW) any listed without this information will be deleted.

kids board gamespirates leaguewrite letter to disney charactergiveaway

Sunday, June 12, 2016

June 12th Weekend Recap

This weekend was pretty hectic.  Friday was a PD Day, so the kids were home from school. Mr. J had been invited to a friends place for the afternoon, we went to the LEGO Imagine Nation Tour in the early evening.  

The kids got to meet a Master Builder - 1 of 8 in the world

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Skincare Tips For Babies and a #CetaphilBabyBathTime Prize

Bathing your baby can be a wonderful, bonding experience, it can also be a source of stress for new parents.  Is the water too hot? Too cold? What if I drop him?  Those are thoughts that went through my head when I was first bathing my children.  Even as a second time mom, I was still nervous at bath time for the first little while.

True Sport Day With Mr. J and His Class

Mr. J participating in the relay during True Sport Play Day
I had the opportunity last week to volunteer with Mr. J's class while they attended a True Sport play day at a local community center.  The activities took place outdoors in a ball diamond, and the kids had a lot of fun.

We started with a small talk from the two women involved in organizing the day, and then we heard from two athletes.  The first athlete was Alexandra McGee.  Her event is the Canoe Slalom. It was fun to hear her talk about how she got into the sport, but what was even more interesting to me (and quite concerning, actually) is that the Olympics does not include women for that event.  We are in 2016, and only men are allowed to participate.  She mentioned that they are hoping to have it changed for the 2020 Olympics, but so far there is no word.  This really, really saddens me.

The other athlete we met was Andrew Heffernan. Andrew is a Guide for visually impaired runners. It was neat to hear about how he helps the athletes. They even blindfolded Alexandra and did a small demonstration so we could see what it was like.

When that was finished, all the schools were sent to different station to participate in some events (limbo, relay, human ladder, and a few others, including getting to talk to the athletes and get their autographs)

(I took lots of photos of the different events, but with so many children in the pictures, I am not comfortable posting them here)

Monday, June 6, 2016

June 6th Monday Madness Giveaway Linky

Happy Monday everyone. The first week of June has arrived. Saturday was a gorgeous day, hubby and Mr. K did more work at my moms place while Mr.J and I were at karate.  Sunday we had some much needed rain - it's been very dry this spring, so our lawns and gardens are surely happy with it.

If you are a blogger, feel free to list any open giveaways you have on your blog. Make sure to list the prize, end date and country eligibility (CAN/US/WW) any listed without this information will be deleted.

kids board gamespirates leaguewrite letter to disney charactergiveaway

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Konrad, It's Not A Caribou - Book Launch and Giveaway

Local author Jennifer Perlin is all set to release her second book, Konrad, It's Not A Caribou. (The first was Konrad, I Will Find You)  The book launch will take place on Sunday, June 12th 2016 from 1-3 pm at Ecole Roger-Saint-Denis in Kanata.  At the launch you will be able to purchase a copy of the book, have it signed, listen to Jennifer read the book, as well as fun activities and snacks - a great family event!

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Surprising My Mom

My hubby has been hard at work over the last few weeks helping to get my moms backyard fixed up. Weeding, building garden edging and removing dead tree branches.  There were a few trips to home improvement stores, and on one of those trips she mentioned how much she wanted a Buddha statue for her garden (she had a tree removed last year, but the stump was left - she had that spot in mind).

On the long weekend, hubby, the boys and I went to pick up some cages for my veggies, and while we were at the garden center, picked up a Buddha. We went to her place and hubby and the kids snuck into the back to place the Buddha where she wanted it.  She was outside talking to a neighbour, and when the kids yelled hi she turned around.

She was SHOCKED when she saw the Buddha :)

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

LEGO Imagine Nation Tour Coming To Ottawa

My children have been LEGO fans for quite awhile.  Mr. J was 4 when he got his first set of LEGO bricks to build with, and he never looked back.  Mr. K soon followed in his big brothers footsteps, and anytime he gets money his first question is if he has enough for a LEGO set.

They are going to be SO excited when they see where we are taking them next Friday evening!

The first ever Lego Imagine Nation Tour is heading to 5 Canadian Cities. Starting in Ottawa, it will makes it's way to 4 other major Canadian Cities.

 June 10-12: Ottawa | EY Centre 
 August 12-14: Montréal | Palais des Congrѐs de Montréal
 September 9-11: Calgary | BMO Centre 
 September 30-October 2: Vancouver | Vancouver Convention Centre
 October 14-16: Toronto | Metro Toronto Convention Centre
“The LEGO Imagine Nation Tour is an exciting chance for families across Canada to immerse themselves in a newly designed LEGO experience that combines everything that today’s kids love about physical play and digital entertainment,” said Michael McNally, senior director, brand relations for LEGO Systems. “From one-of-a-kind life-sized LEGO models to the rare opportunity to build with and learn from a LEGO Master Builder, wrapped in an interactive digital experience that guides the fun, our event offers Canadian families a chance to experience the LEGO brand like never before.”
If you want to visit the Ottawa event, you will need to get tickets. More information (and tickets for other cities) can be found here. Tickets are needed to get into the event and suggested that you purchase ahead of time (there is no guarantee you will be able to get tickets at the door).  Everyone over the age of 2 needs a ticket, and the cost is $28.50.

There are 13 pavillions to explore, and 20 life sized LEGO models to snap photos with

TIP: Representatives from Toys R Us Canada will be there with purchases available. This may be something you need to be prepared for depending on who is accompanying you.

Such a fun opportunity for the whole family - and a great way to beat the June heat!  Follow along on the evening of June 10th as I post photos on Instagram while we enjoy all they have to offer!