Friday, 16 November 2018

Comfort & Style for Black Friday: A Holiday Series Collaboration

Hello and welcome to the Holiday Series by my sweet Ada from Elegance and Mommyhood!  Please scroll to the bottom to see how all my sweet fashionista girlfriends have styled the Black Friday outfit!!!!  Here are my thoughts on the whole Black Friday thing and what I would wear.

I find the whole idea of black Friday quite underwhelming to be honest.  EEK, sorry if that rubs you the wrong way.  Maybe because I am Canadian so Black Friday isn't quite as hyped up, though in recent years it's been a bigger event here as well.  Maybe it's the idea of the crowd and the $$$$ bills flying straight out of my bank account, or maybe I am a Grinch.  LOL.  In any case, I don't think it's just the Black Friday, I think for me it more about the idea of fighting through the crowds and making snap decisions.  I am really not good at shopping under pressure so there are a few things I do to prepare so I don't miss a good sale. 
1)  I have the kids wish lists created and presents already picked out ahead of time.

2)  I figure out what the current price is and if it's reasonable I just get it ahead of time.

3)  I choose what big ticket items I am really looking  for  on that day.  This year I am simple keeping my eyes open to see if flights to San Diego go down in price.

4)  I shop online as much as possible to avoid the rush.  

Online shopping is sooooooooo easy and made for me.   Click, click, click....ding-dong, it's here!  
Sometimes it's coffee and sometimes it's wine.  

I do like wandering the stores ahead of the Christmas rush to get inspired and check out new displays in the stores.  So last weekend we went to the mall as a family without any pressure to buy or find anything in particular.  We just grabbed some coffee, hot chocolate and hit up some local stores and then made our way to Toys R Us (for the kids) and the mall.  Anya added a few items on her wish list from Toys R Us, and Halie and I found some things we liked at Bath and Body Works. 

Jeans, boots, poncho comfort are my weekend jam.   The poncho kept me cozy and warm, and my hands free while waking through the mall (I despise having to carry my coat around in the mall).  The outfit was pretty tame so  I added a little bling with these new Stella and Dot chandelier earrings.  Love how it all came together and how the daylight cooperated for these pictures.     

Hint, hint, Santa.  Please place one of these in my stocking.  -Love me.
Fell in love with this mirror/door and  would absolutely love to have it at the cabin.

What are your Black Friday thoughts and plans?

Shop This Post:
Poncho old (similar:  option 1; option 2)

ADA Elegance and Mommyhood "I cannot believe Thanksgiving is this week and then Black Friday, which means the Holiday craze has started. I am one of those 'lucky' ones that has to work all day on Black Friday, because the company I work for deals with sales among other things. For the small portion of the day when I do not work, you will find me bundled up in layers like my Abercrombie henley, Abercrombie fleece jacket, ponte skinnies, sneakers, the softest fleece scarf and a fleece beanie. And yes without realizing it, I wore yet another leopard hat. Happy Thanksgiving week, babes!"

BOJANA Bo's Bodacious Blog "Jeans, boots, poncho comfort are my weekend jam.   The poncho kept me cozy and warm, and my hands free while waking through the mall (I despise having to carry my coat around in the mall).  The outfit was pretty tame so  I added a little bling with these new Stella and Dot chandelier earrings.  Love how it all came together and how the daylight cooperated for these pictures. "

SHELBEE Shelbee on the Edge "I will be working all day on Black Friday: at the consignment shop from 10 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. then heading to the mall to work at Torrid from 5:30 until 10:30 p.m.  So I need to be comfortable while donning my battle gear! I found this graphic tee which says “My coffee needs coffee” to be perfectly appropriate for working 12 hours on Black Friday.  To be battle-ready, I went for a camo cardigan and plaid combat boots.  Wish me luck! 

LAURA I Do deClaire "I don't normally head out on Black Friday. It's too chaotic and my introverted self gets overwhelmed with all the crowds. I like to be home, nice and warm and cozy, recover from Thanksgiving, and do some light online shopping if I have a chance! What could be better than overalls and a soft cardigan for a day at home?"

AMBER Avec Amber "I know that many people have a four day weekend and roll right from Thanksgiving feasts to Black Friday shopping! My Black Friday outfit idea has this in mind with pieces that are both comfortable and cozy for the dropping temperatures...and leggings instead of pants, because real pants the day after Thanksgiving is just too aggressive."

JENNIE A Pocketful of Polka Dots

LINDA A Labour of Life "My Vanheusen Dot pants are so very comfortable and perfect for Black Friday Shopping.  For me I will be working (aka Canadian) but comfy at my desk and surfing for awesome deals."

MONICA Jersey Girl, Texan Heart "Can y'all believe that it is already that time of year?  The madness of Black Friday shopping is upon us!  I usually don't go out shopping on Black Friday, but whenever I do, I'm always there later in the day in something super comfy, because I'm still stuffed from Thanksgiving dinner the night before.  Here is my winter uniform!  A sweater, some comfy pants, boots, and a hat."

CHERYL Cheryl Shops "Normally I'm down in Los Angeles for Thanksgiving—and California has been having unseasonably warm, dry weather—so this is what I'd wear on Black Friday. It's kind of half summer and half fall, but these are some of my favorite pieces that I've featured this year on Cheryl Shops. The accessories are key for Black Friday bargain hunting: the crossbody purse allows you to go hands-free, and the low-heeled boots are comfy enough to be on your feet for hours. Happy shopping!"

Wednesday, 14 November 2018

October Sentence A Day Addition

Oct 1st brought us snow. Too soon.  

Oct.2 We welcomed 100+ dedicated literacy teachers for another great year of collaborating and learning.  Working with dedicated, knowledgeable and passionate educators is my favorite part of my job.  

Oct.3 Welcome our newest nephew, Otto Bourdon.  


Oct.4th Pulled the trigger and bought a puppy.  The girls don't know but we are getting a little lady to join the family.  Now to somehow plant the seed of what we want her name to be, yet make Anya think it was her idea.  :)  

Oct.5th Bowling and sleepover with Anya's new friend from school.  If you are a regular reader you know we were all a little anxious about the move to the new school but it's going super well!!!  

Oct.6, 7 & 8 Thanksgiving weekend brought lots of baby snuggles with baby Otto and lots of play time with Cooper.  The girls also enjoyed getting outdoors in nature, hotubing with awesome friends and 🦃 meal with family.  

Oct 9th Back to the grind after a nice long weekend.  Tanner got a haircut; handsome man.  

Oct.10 Came home to a random act of kindness by the students from our local public school who raked and bagged our front yard.  

Oct.11th Appointments, appointments, appointments.

Oct.13 Bit cold but we got outdoors anyway. 

Oct.14 Epic day of cleaning, meal prepping and getting laundry done.  I am heading into a really busy week and wanted most of the food prepped for minimal cooking.  I made fried fish, rice and salad for two meals.  I also prepped veggies and a roast for a meal later on in the week, and made a huge pot of Sicilian chicken soup.  

October 15th Forgot to reflect.  No memory of this day. 

Oct.16 Worked with a small group of primary teachers on some planning.

Oct.17 Went to a planning meeting for our local conservatory,  that will be attached to our new children's museum.

Oct.18 Best Day Ever!  We had our kindergarten community meeting and went through a process that encouraged us to grow our cultural competence, literacy and numeracy understandings together.  This group of teachers lifts me and inspires me beyond words.  


Oct.20. Welcome to the family Oreo.  We had a big surprise for the girls  and they were shocked!! 


Oct.21 We celebrated my cousin's birthday and went to a Halloween party.  First time playing lazer tag for me.  

Oct.22 Late night working on a literacy syllabus at our University for the College of Education.

Oct.23 Oreo learns to fetch. (Video)

Oct.24 It was Halloween decorations went up.   My girls and husband did it all!

Oct.25 Halie's first band concert.  She decided to try the clarinet and has come so far, you know from "noise" to actual notes, in a short amount of time.  #proudmama

Oct.26 TGIF.  Its been a long two weeks of work, two more to go.

Oct.27 Felt completely inspired by the work of our teacher colleges from British Columbia.

Oct.28th Enjoyed a quite 10 km loop by myself.  Felt recharged.

Oct.29 Iced 50+ cupcakes for the girls school Halloween parties.

Oct.30th My neck totally seized on me and am having trouble sleeping, shoulder checking and just doing life. 😪

Oct. 31st  Halloween!!!!


Friday, 2 November 2018

Plaid Coat for the Win

I've been searching for a new wool coat since last winter but really didn't want to pay $300+ for it.  Here in Saskatchewan fall is chilly and winters are fridge, so having just a cute coat isn't really an option, you need warmth.  Early this fall I received an email from threadUP and it said that they were now shipping to Canada.  I had read about this consignment website on other blogs but knew that it was a US company and usually shipping, customs, exchange rate, etc. just don't make sense for me.  I quickly started browsing the site for a wool coat to see what would come up.  Quickly I was able to weed through what I was interested in and this little plaid number caught my eye.   It was:
  • 40% wool.  
  • Plaid (a pattern I love)
  • Super cute collar. 
  • Flair, umpire waist fit. 
  • It was my size.  
  • Like "new" it said.
  • And the price was $32 with shipping!!!!!!  
  • YES! YES! YES!   

Once I order it, it was literally days before it was on my doorstep in cute packaging.  I unpacked it, anxiously and crossed my fingers that it wouldn't disappoint.  It didn't!!!!  It was in MINT condition.  The pockets were still sewed up and I don't think it had ever been worn.  I've had so many complements on it over the last month and I absolutely love it.  

My final thoughts, I wouldn't use threadUP for basics, I would highly recommend them if you are looking for unique or higher end items such as purses, coats, or dresses for a special occasion.  I also noticed they have children's items which might be worth a look through as well.  This was not in any way a sponsored post, just my thoughts.  I hope you all had a lovely Halloween  and  happy weekend!

Wednesday, 31 October 2018

Tips and Tricks for Hosting a Successful Holiday Dinner & Continental Drift Link-Up

Hosting during the holidays can be very stressful but there are certain things that I've learned to do to elevate the stress.  My youngest daughter was born on Dec. 21st  and I hosted Christmas brunch on Dec. 25th.  Sounds crazy but really it felt easier to do that than to have to bundle up a new baby and a toddler, to venture outside in -40C.   Since then, we have hosted a family birthday celebration, a kids birthday party and a friends holiday party over the holiday season (end of November- prior to Christmas).   I will say that I generally just enjoy hosting and planning to have people over, but that doesn't mean I don't feel overwhelmed.    Here are a few tips and tricks that I follow for our large family dinners.  

1.  Save the date.  Because everyone is super busy in December with their own stuff, I usually set the date in late October.  I text everyone, find out their availability and try my best to accommodate.  I always aim to have big family/friend events on Saturdays because I work full-time outside of our home and  this gives me Friday evening and Sunday as buffer days.

2.  Keep the menu simple and shop on-line I've done order-in pizza and paper plates in the past, especially when the kids were little.  More often then not,  I do a full dinner, or sometimes brunch depending on everyone's schedule.  Some simple dinners are:
  • Turkey
  • Ham (Costco spiral ham is my favorite)
  • Pulled Pork (Slow Cooker)
I try to think as simply as I can and prep as many salads or side dishes ahead of time.  At a minimum I have the menu set the weekend before, if not a couple of weeks ahead.  I write it ALL down and shop online a few days before.  I love Click & Collect and if anything isn't available, I still have a few days to stop by to pick up in time for the weekend.    

3.  Drinks.  Don't forget to think about what you will be serving for drinks.  For brunch I usually keep it to juice and pre-made smoothies.  In the evening we usually have beer, red wine, white wine, and something hard like Jack Daniels.  We also have some canned pop on hand as an non-alcoholic option.  This really depends on your crowd, but make sure you plan and do inventory at least a week or two in advance so you don't have to make a trip to the liquor store the week of the event.

4.  Cleaning.  Argh.  My advice is clean minimally before hand, bathrooms, vacuum, and decorate if it's a special time of the year.  Get a cleaner to do a deep clean after the event rather than before.  Basically do as I say, not as I do. I am kind of crazy about cleaning, I start cleaning the weekend before and throughout the week and then clean afterwards too.  Don't do this!!!! It's stupid.  No one really even notices your walls, floors, baseboards, except you.

5.  Ask for help.  I don't ask for people to bring food, though I am not  opposed to potlucks, it's just not our way for birthday celebrations.  My grandma usually likes to make the birthday cake for each one of us and it's something my children have grown to love and appreciate.  It's special.  Where I do ask for help is from my husband.  He takes the kids out of the house between 1-4 p.m.!  This allows me to tidy up the house, get everything set up, cook, and get myself ready as much as possible.

6.  Dishes & Decorations.   Get all of your serving dishes, good cutlery, etc.,  all ready the night before and labeled so that you now you have everything you need and it's clean.  (Tip: If you label everything it helps people who wish to "help" in the kitchen know where you want what)  If you are going to use paper/plastic, make sure to take inventory before you order your groceries.  Also decorate ahead of time and get your table extensions, table cloths, dinner table trays, all ready to go the night before or first thing in the morning.  

7.  Hair, Make-up & Outfit.  I always know in advance, like the weekend before, what I am going to wear, what jewelry I need, and how I want to do my hair, etc.  TIP, do this for your children and husband as well.  You don't have time to do laundry the day before.
 I do my make-up and hair mid-morning or early afternoon. I always shower the night before because I don't have time to deal with blow drying or air drying my hair, etc.    My hair and make-up can usually be quickly touched up and   I can quickly just throw on my clothes before everyone arrives and use an apron to finish up in the kitchen.

8.  Husband & wife  duties for hosting.  You need to decide these ahead of time!!!!!  Seriously, you'll just end up snapping at each other or annoyed with one another if you don't.  (I've learned this obviously the hard way) I am in the kitchen.  THE ONLY PERSON IN THE KITCHEN, chatting away with guests, who for the most part stay on the other side of the island (yep, control freak).  Logan is in charge of putting away people's coats and getting them drinks.  I usually have finger snacks out on the table for people to enjoy with their drinks. 

9 Kids and Parties.  Now that the girls are older, they mostly are asked to sit and visit with family members or entertain their younger cousins.  When they were younger, I would have a special toy (puzzle, simple coloring, small tub of legos,  playdough,etc.)  set up on the floor or little side table for them to play with on their own.   Having a special  or new activity for them to do, think independent play, is a great way to keep them entertained and out of the kitchen as you are preparing the last minute things for dinner.  I am  also pretty frank with my girls about how I want them to behave when we have company and have been since they were little.  

 10.  Dishes.  Don't do dishes while company is over, just be with them and enjoy the evening.  Choose plates that can go into the dishwasher at the end of the evening.  Leave other dishes until the next day if you don't have the energy to deal with them.  

11.  ENJOY.  Most importantly enjoy the people that are in your life and embrace the chaos.  If this means you do take-out, potluck, or coffee and cake, that's perfectly fine.  . Remember the most important thing is to be present with friends and family.  

Now please follow each of your hosts Bojana of  BodaciousblogSydney Shop Girl and Mutton Style  on at least one platform (Instagram, Twitter or blog) and comment on their blogs.  It would be great if you could read and comment on the blog above yours in the link up.  You might make a new friend. Please also do add a link back to our blogs on your posts to help the linkup grow.  Thanks for stopping by, we look forward to learning more about everyone!

Join us for the Continental Drift link-up below.

Friday, 26 October 2018

Give Me All the Fall Colors: White Jeans #3

When I see a pile of leaves I  instantly get that childhood urge to throw them up in the air, run and jump into them, or simply just play with them, don't you?  It goes without saying that one of my favorite things about fall are the natural  colors that surround us.  Even if you live in a city, like me, you can find pockets of that natural beauty without traveling too far.  Check out a local park, a hiking trail nearby, or just take the time to stop and notice the leaves, the fallen pine cones, the change in perennial plants and bushes, pumpkins that line peoples lawns, right in your neighborhood. 

Taking outfit photos indoors is always so difficult for me, especially as daylight is hard to come by after work, so taking advantage of the outdoor setting before it gets too cold has been my goal this year.  I've also been trying to shoot three outfits at a time in order to minimize the time I spend on the blog and away from my family. This is my last white jean outfit, see #1 and #2, and it's one that I think perfectly transitions me from fall into early winter.  Cooler temps are referred to as 'sweater weather' and I love me some sweaters.  What's great about this one, is that it's not over-sized, chunky and let's just cuddle up on the couch and hibernate through the winter (those are my favorite types), but it's a sweater/dress/tunic.  It's totally acceptable to wear to the office with jeans/ leggings and paired up with short booties, OTKB, pearls or funky jewelry. Because of the simple cut and neutral color, you can really use it as a basic piece and dress it up, down, funky, add color, basically you can style it whatever way you want!  I decided wanted the natural environment to stand out, so I kept everything else super simple and neutral.  I love how this outfit turned out.  Playing with the different shades of gray and adding the wine-deep-purple purse gives it just enough dimension without taking over.  The pearls are a simple and classy touch without making the outfit too formal. 

 Have a beautiful weekend friends.   Please join the  Continental Drift Link-Up on November 1st with any post of your choice (family, DIY, travel, books, fashion, etc.)  right here.  We will be sharing our tips for successful hosting through the holiday season.  Thanks for helping us grow and share.

 ON White Jeans
Aritzia Tunic (old; similar)
H & M Purse (sold out; black available)