Sunday, 10 February 2019

Valentine's Day Looks

Oops.  My regular Friday post didn't go up yesterday so here it is today.  Valentine's day is just around the corner and I've been inspired to pull out some of my old favorites to play and wear to work.  The first and obvious color that comes to mind is RED, so I've styled two different looks with that inspiration.  

1.  Velvet Red:   It's been so cold here so this cozy red velvet sweater was perfect for a work outfit with black pants.  Casual, cozy and looks on trend.  I had so many complements, because the velvet throws off so much shimmer and shine.    The second outfit is what I might wear for a Valentine's day dinner.  


2.  Red Dress:  This dress is probably the second oldest piece of clothing in my closet.  I purchased it early into my career and just love it.  It's my POWER house dress.  BOSS babe dress.  I reach for this dress whenever I need a little confidence boost.  Though I don't wear it much anymore, it brings back memories and somehow in Marie Kondos words it actually "sparks joy" for me.  Anyway, a few years ago I styled it here with a blazer and cardigan.


3.  What to Wear?  This year we will be in Mexico for Valentine's Day so help me decide what to wear to dinner that evening,  pink romper, or midi-pleated skirt?  (sorry the indoor picturs is not ideal, but it's way too cold to get outside.) 

Tell me in the comments below which one you would choose?


Tuesday, 5 February 2019

January Edition: Sentence - A -Day

1st -  Happy New Year!  Read all about my goals for 2019 here

Best crew to ring in the New Year with!!!!


2nd Lazy morning. Just chilling with a cup of coffee and a book. 

3rd  The girls and I ventured to an outdoor skating rink where I had a fall and can't really walk on my legs.  Hmmm.

4th  My family went snowboarding/skiing without me due to my knee being sore from yesterdays fall.  I took the opportunity to have a quite day just for me.  I worked on updating my resume, spent time with a friend, and took down Christmas decorations.

5th  Halie wasn't feeling well and we thought for sure that she finally got the  stomach flu that plagued our whole family, immediate and extended, but nothing.

6th Shopping with Halie.  This is a rarity and I felt so happy that she just wanted it to be just her and I.  What a wonderful way to end the winter break.

7th  Started and ended the day off with my BFF.  Spin in the early morning and a visit & aglass of wine to end the day.

8th Work session with some passionate and intelligent colleagues.  We are working on writing another syllabus outline for an assessment class at the university.

9th PAUSE.  Today my word came to me and I decided to put work on pause and even though it was cold, I went for a river walk at lunch.  

10th  Started the day off by listening to  my little girl read to me before work.
With activities in the evening I knew this just wasn't going to happen and I've been making a conscious effort to sit with her everyday to work on fluency, defining new words. and decoding difficult words.

12th  At work we engaged in a brain building activity.   The purpose was for us gain a better understanding of  how the brain develops over the first few years of life and the impact those years have on the ability to cognitively develop  and cope with stressors in life.

 13th  Cross country skiing and a walk through the zoo to celebrate the weekend. 

 14th  Nieces and nephews.  We spent the day with our littlest family members.

15th Book club day.  I finished my first book of 2019, The Reliable Wife by Robert Goolrick.  Quick, suspenseful and slightly dark.  I liked it.

16th The days are becoming a blur of early mornings long days and passing out from exhaustion.  Lol.

17th I've had a busy few weeks and it all became a bit overwhelming tonight.    I PAUSED to make time for a run and the 30 minutes on the treadmill was all I needed to become refocused.

18th Party #1 for Halie.  9 tween girls.  Make your own pizza.  Lazer tag.  Sleepover.  Success.

19th It's my  dads birthday!  My dad and Halie have been sharing their family birthday parties for the past 12 years. 

20th Halie and I did yoga together and Oreo wanted to join in.  

Dog yoga.

21st  Today was the first day in 2 weeks that was just a normal workday.  I worked a normal 8 hour day and left my computer at work.  Yipee!!!

22nd. Played in a Kindergarten classroom!

23rd. Can't remember 😊

24th Visited with my grandma.

25th Celebrated Halie's real birthday with a family dinner.  She turned 12 today and this year I used the words Growth & Pride to describe her year.  Read here.

26th Freezing cold here again.  Off we go to the trampoline park.  I practiced my lesson of the week for my camera course by trying to take some action shots.  Very difficult in such low lighting.  Here are two of Halie doing handsprings in action. 


27th BFFs Taylor Swift birthday party!!! (fog machine, karaoke, shirt making)


28th I finally had an opportunity to get together with my running friends and catch up.  One of my goals was to see friends more and this month I've done that four different times by hosting family or friends at my house for casual get togethers.So good for the soul.

29th  One Eyed Jacks  and Box Cars Literacy PD.  This was so much fun and I learned tons of low prep, high impact word games to play with my students!

30th  Tonight I learned some great math games from One Eyed Jacks and Box Cars!  I am so excited to try them all with my own kids.

31st Need I say more.

What were some of your January highlights? 



Please join us for your own addition of Sentence-a-Day, the first Tuesday of every month.  :)


InlinkzLink Party

Friday, 1 February 2019

70's Vibe for the Office


I was all smiles before the harsh winter hit.  Thankfully I was able to shoot these photos in mild temperatures, -15C or 5F, and because the last couple of weeks have been sooooooooo cold.  I will not be shooting anything outdoors if the weather doesn't let up.  Anyway back to the outfit.  I love this outfit so much.   The rich colors.  The textures. It's cozy, chic and comfortable all at the same time.  Also I feel fantastic wearing this and that's reason enough to have it on repeat!  This whole outfit was inspired by that 70s vibe.  I was desperate to find a cozy sweater in mustard yellow at the onset of winter and though my first choice was sold out, I was pleasantly surprised to find this one in an XS while at Old Navy.  The rest of the outfit just came together without much thought. I love the outfit is made up of,  A) inexpensive pieces, and  B) pieces that are completely versatile and can be paired up in various ways.




Shop This Look: 

Cable Knit Sweater (Sold Out; Old Navy similar)

Corduroy Skirt (Sold Out; H & M similar)

Booties (old; Expression similar on sale for $36)

Crossbody Purse (thrifted; Forever 21 similar)

Thursday, 24 January 2019

Growth & Pride: Halie From 11 to 12

Growth and Pride. 

Tanner is still her first love and he made it on her birthday cake this year.
Their birthdays are just one week apart, so they share a party and a cake each year.

Growth.  Pride.  These are the two words that come to mind when I reflect on Halie's past year.   Last year when Halie turned 11, she was still teetering that line between my little girl and that next step.  She checked in often.  She picked up a doll here and there.  She sought out our permission and advice.  She showed her insecurities.  One year later  and I am so proud of the maturing she has done.  Let's take a peek at the year and start out with the most typical coming of age changes, to the biggest impact.


1.  Babysitting.  Halie took a babysitters course last winter, shortly after turning 11.  This was a big step for her that I encouraged her to pursue (more like pushed, but you know).  She went without a friend to the course and learned a lot.  Through experience with her sister and support from friends who offered her some experience with their little ones, she picked up some hours and started feeling more comfortable.  Now she babysits pretty often and is earning her own $$$.


First job!!!!


2.  $$$.  Speaking of $, Halie has developed some pricy habits such as discovering Starbucks.  The apple doesn't fall far from the tree as I discovered flavored coffee (more sugar than coffee) early on as well, but I wasn't about to hand her cash to spend on such things.  Make-up, coffee, extra clothing,  body lotions, etc. she has taken on buying herself.  Babysitting money is coming in handy and I am happy to let her start to make decisions on what is worth spending money on, what is worth saving up for.  Slow and steady she is managing it all really well and even has offered to pay (half and half) for private horseback riding lessons.  I am pretty proud of her.


Mother-daughter date.  She treated me with her Starbucks GC.

3.  Friends and communication.  Yup.  In my day, that meant I was tieing up the only phone line we had for hours.  No calls were coming in or going out.   Fast forward to 2017, our kids now communicate via chats, FaceTime, something called Musically (????), etc., you get it.   How do we deal with it?  Well we just take it one step at a time.  We learn alongside her.  We try to stay open to new suggestions and new ways, as long as she can explain the  purpose to us.  Sometimes we say yes, sometimes we say no.  One rule is not negotiable is that we have absolute access to all technololgy.  She still has to ask us when she wants to use it and there is a limit to how much.  She has a phone, but no data, and it's use is also limited and not prermitted during family time.  We feel fortunate that we have gotten to know her friends.  We have them over.  We connect and text with their parents.  We feel comfortable with all of them.  It's a great feeling.  When the girls come over they no longer need crafts or games  to be entertained.  They don't play with toys instead they talk.  They listen to music.  They do hair and make-up.  They are kind and respectful.  There is little girl drama and usually Halie is pretty open about it.  Honestly, we feel really good right now.

Best group of friends.


3.  New Experiences!  This is the BIGGEST one of all.  Halie not only took on a new experience this school year, but she sought it out herself.  My insecure, hold back until I know I am going to do it right, girl took initiative and voiced her desires to apply for a special program in our city.  This grade six program runs out of a community center for elders, who may have disabilities and/or special health needs.  The students who apply and are selected by a lottery system, learn from the elders that live in the center.  They listen to their stories, they seek academic help, but also participate in various clubs taught and led by the elders, along with many community experiences that they may not have had access to in regular programming.  It's truly a citizenship and humanities based learning program. This has been the greatest gift to Halie thus far in her life.  We have seen confidence, humility, compassion, empathy, realization, motivation, respect, understanding, all grow from this experience.  She has befriended not only new peers, but the elders, and has created a special bond with one particular elder.  When I went for a visit,  Halie prepped me in the most mature and companionate way.  She explained that some elders are difficult to understand when they speak, but to be patient, to take time to talk to them just like you would your friends, to sit with them, to laugh with them, and to just be.  I was so moved by her leadership and openness, and as I began to meet the elders, I was once again filled with pride.  As the  elders described my daughters characteristics, the love, respect, and friendship that they have built with her, I was moved me to point of tears threatening to come up to the surface.  I couldn't have asked for a better education, because my daughter is not only a kinder human being, but also one that's aware and more open to learn from people who have led a  different life than her.

Loving all the elderly in our lives.
Baka and great-baka.

Halie with Muzerka.  She loves him so much.
Her first horse show earned her a first place, 2nd place and a couple of third places.
Finding her own fashion sense.
Finding out that her heart is big enough for two dogs. 

So with that, I am beyond proud to be her mother.  I am in awe of the young person she is becoming and I know that her heart of gold will continue to grow and to reach out to others.  I feel confident that she will strive to make her life, our home, and her community, a better place.

Sunday, 20 January 2019

Winter FabFitFun Box Review


A gift just for me.  I love it.  Seriously the anticipation of waiting for my FabFitFun box to arrive sends me back to Christmas morning, every time.  What in our adult life gives us so much joy or giddiness?  I tried my first box in the fall, before committing to invest all of my birthday money into a year subscription, and I am so glad I did.  I would never buy most of these items on my own, I just wouldn't, but receiving them as a surprise or a gift, I just love it and feel like I am pampering myself.  After the first box, I decided that I deserved this little quarterly gift.  My winter box arrived just before Christmas and I also bought my sister one for her birthday and she LOVED IT!    Okay, let's look at what I received!


The boxes are always beautiful and there is always a magazine that goes through all the products, tips and tricks.  Love reading it. 


The Patchology sheet mask I actually purchased as an add-on, which you can do with every box.  I received a sheet mask in my first box and absolutely loved them so I was hooked and these are just as good.  The set of 5 sheet masks for like $9 and they are amazing.  The oils, Ecylptus and Sweet Orange, which I've used in both my bath and my diffuser.  I am super excited to try the Ahava Hydration Cream Mask, especially now that it's winter.  I was waiting to use all my sheet masks up before testing it out.  The BLAQ eye mask is fun to try but I didn't really notice much of a difference to be honest, but again, fun to try and test out.


LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this palette.  I don't have tons of make-up so this is really fun to get and try out various looks with.  I use it daily for the office and also when I am going out, there are so many fun shades to work with.  Matte and shimmer,  classy and glam.  You name it, you can create it.  Also the Thrive Eye Brightener stick is awesome.  I keep it in my little cosmetic bag at work so that I can touch up my tired looking eyes half was through the day!



These coasters have become a favorite and have been moved up to the cabin.  They were probably what I was most excited about and maybe the through blanket.

Again, never, ever, would I have purchased this traveling jewelry holder but it's been used several times already.  Brilliant was to organize all my jewelry that I need and nothing gets tangled up!



This fringed, cozy, colorblock throw was the perfect addition to our master bedroom decor.  Not only do I like to cozy up with it and a cup of tea, but it looks great on the edge of our bed.



Finally, I think the above was my favorite piece in my box, the BearPaw headhand and glove duo.  I have misplace my headband and am absolutely devastated it by it.  I love the look of it and it was soooooo warm and soft with the fleece layer on the inside.  I would buy this again if it was an option. 


There you have it.  My winter FabFunFit box right here.  If you are interested in giving it a try, just one seasonal box, or maybe an editor box, or a Pintrest box, do it for yourself or another lucky lady in your life.  They have lots of options and also have them on sale often so you can try it for less.  Each box is 49.99 US (even with the Canadian $ conversion I think it's worth it) and you get way more than it's worth.  You also get to customize a few things in your box, while others will be a surprise to you.  If you want $10 off your first box, you the link below!