Saturday 28 December 2019

NYE Outfit: New, Old, Rented or Borrowed

New Years Eve is just around the corner and I love, love, love the idea of dressing up and going out, but the truth is my NYE is going to be spent at the cabin this year so I am thinking a pretty top with jeans will be as dressed up as I get.  That being said, I do love to dress up a few times around the season so I got all dressed up, as did my gorgeous girls and handsome husband when we went out to a live theater performance of ELF.  I actually was stopped a couple of times by women saying the liked my dress and saying that they love to see people come dressed up to the theater.  

This whole outfit is borrowed from my closet 🙂

The question becomes then, do you buy a new fancy outfit for NYE or the holidays?!?  Well I've done it all before.  I will often buy one fancy outfit a year and wear it for EVERYTHING and then I donate or sell it on a buy and sell, as it's usually still in mint condition.  I've also purchased a new statement piece from a buy and sell or a consignment sale, rather than going new.  Check out Belong Lifestyle for an excellent selection of new and consignment items that ships within Canada and the US. I know many people in the states are using rental services, which I think is absolutely brilliant and though I've never tried this option, I am linking up a list of Canadian rental services for you to check out here. Another option is BORROW.  Borrow from your friends.  Borrow jewelry, outfits, shoes, etc.  I often borrow from my sisters closet, and this emerald teal dress is brought to you as a hand-me-down.  She may be done with it, but I am just thrilled to incorporate it into my closet.  You DO NOT have to spend a lot of $$$ to feel pretty, especially if it isn't something you are going to get a lot of use out of.  


Outfits from 2017, 2018 & 2019; notice all the same shoe 😉

So even though I may be going a little more casual this year, and likely will repeat this outfit from a few years ago, see here,  I do look for an occasion to get all dressed up.  I love feeling beautiful, feminine and elegant. Happy New Year, however you choose to spend it.  Thank you for supporting my blogging journey, for commenting and encouraging me.  Thank you, thank you, thank you and all the warmest wishes for 2020!

Saturday 21 December 2019

Double Digits for Anya!!!

And just like that I no longer have little people in my house.  Today, Anya turns 10.  Double digits!!!!   Today though I want to celebrate this milestone of Anya’s by sharing 10 things that I absolutely admire, adore and love about my youngest daughter.

1.     Her heart.  She literally has a heart of gold.  I know I am her mom, but she truly is  aware of other people feelings and is always striving to be a helper, a healer, and a good friend.  

2.     Adventurous.  She is willing to take risks even when they are scary, or to appease us.  From trying new activities such as camp, switching schools, trying wakeboarding/kneeboarding/water skiing, and even going on scary rides at DisneyWorld just to make the rest of the family happy. 

See her in the front row, holding on for dear life.  Hahahahaha.

3.     Her hugs fill my bucket.  She knows innately when someone needs a good.  When she hugs, she hugs tight.  She hugs so that she can transfer her love onto to you.

4.     She is SOOOO creative.  You guys this kid is an inventor.  My favorite of her inventions was the bike helmet with a built-in bug spray.  She has wild, innovative and unique ideas and she throws herself into them and makes them come to life.  Though this creativity does get her into trouble, and results in  many messes around the house, I also fully admire it.

5.     Extrovert.  Yep.  I see so much of myself in her.  Full of life.  Chatty.  Wants to be friends with everyone, not for popularity, but she truly wants to know them.  Doesn’t want to miss anything.  She just wants to soak it all up.


6.     Teacher in training.  She is sooo good with the little ones that come to our home. On more  than once occasion  her teachers over the years have mentioned how she can gently work alongside peers having trouble.  I can see her making an excellent caregiver whether it be in the role of a mom, a teacher, or  someone who cares about the elderly.

Bedtime songs and stories for her little cousin.

7.     Cultural.  Over the years she has become more and more interested in learning about not only my cultural back ground, and that of her grandparents, but also of Saskatchewan cultural history.  She truly seems to honor and respect this learning.

8.     Performer.  The creative side once again comes to life as she loves to preform for an audience and makes up dances, silly skits, challenges for the family, pulls pranks around the house, whatever will make you enjoy yourself.  She absolutely would love to be a YouTuber, hahahaha.

9.     Cooking/baking is quickly becoming a passion.  From dance, to guitar, science experiments to the kitchen.  She loves trying out new recipes and cooking for the family. Her favorite food is sushi, though she doesn't know how to make it YET.

10. Love Language =  Acts of Service & Physical.  Anya really loves to give hugs, says I Love You in a meaningful way.  She also communicates her love by willingly putting dishes always, picking up the dog poop in the backyard, makes little gifts for friends, helps us tidy up, cooks for us, etc..  She does it all because she wants to communicate to us, her grandparents, her friends, and people in the community, that she cares.  She is the first to give up a new birthday gift to donate to the school toy drive, or to approach us about helping the homeless in the community, or raising money for the polar bears.  

Raised $50 for the Polar Bears after learning they were endangered.

     She will always be my little girl.  You guys, I am so not ready for her to grow up.  It’s likeshe knows I am struggling so she gets me to lay in her bed occasionally, or she will sneakin for a cuddle on the couch or in our bed.  Gone are the days of her coming to our bed,which she did for years and years and years.  Lately I have become much more aware thateverything might be "the last time".  The last time she sleeps in our bed.  The last time shefully believes.  The last time she plays with her dolls, etc.  So today I am capturing asnippet of our life with her at this age so I will have it to look back on and hopefully it'llhelp me conjure up these memories of her for years to come.  To my littlest girl, 

I love you for ever.
I like you for always.
As long as I am living, 
my baby you'll be. 
         - Robert Munch

Love, Mama

Sunday 8 December 2019

Books of 2019

Hello world.  How is everyone getting along this December?  I am finding slices of time to just slow down and enjoy the little things in life.  I am looking forward to having a break from work, 10 more teaching days.  I love my job but as you have  probably noticed with my inconsistency on here, it's been taking a good chunk of my time and energy.  Anyway, today I am reflecting on my 2019 goal of reading one book a month.  I killed it in the first 8 months of the year and then this last while has been a struggle but I reached my goal.  I love reading.  It calms me.  It grounds me.  It allows my brain to rest and put my life on hold for just a little while.  I feel it's similar to what people describe yoga does for them.  

Here is  my quick review of the books I've read in 2019.  

 BOOK of the YEAR!!!

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Educated by Tara Westover  Hands down, without hesitation, my favorite book of 2019.  This book blew my mind.  I can’t believe what Tara went through as a child and my mind was blown to know that this type of lifestyle is still so prevalent in some parts of the country.  Tara is “home schooled” but really not until she is 18 at which point she enters college, having worked her butt off to pass the SAT’s.  She now has a PHD but no high school diploma.  READ this book!  It’ll test your outlook of families, your understanding of love, forgiveness and family bonds that are so strong even if other believe they aren’t what’s best for you.  Incredible and a story that has left a lifelong impact on me.


⭐⭐⭐⭐A House in the Sky by Amanda Lindhout  WOW!  Just wow!  This is a hard book to critique because it’s someones experience.  I can’t imagine anything like this happening to me and being able to survive it both physically and emotionally is difficult to imagine.  The book is about a young, aspiring journalist, Amanda, that after years of entering war-torn countries, ends up being kidnapped  and kept for over a year.  On the one hand I felt like, “what are you doing!!!!!  Everyone is telling you this is dangerous situtation to be put yourself in, especially not being affiliated with an actual newspaper or station.”  On the other hand she stays very honest and also takes responsibility for her actions throughout the story.  A hard but good read.  I would recommend it but it does move very slow at times.


⭐⭐⭐⭐ I, Witness by Niki Mackay  Mystery.  Suspense.  Murder or not?    This one had it all!  Super good and a quick read.  Also, my husband really liked it and that’s a WIN.


⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Big Little Lies by Lianne Moriarty  YES!  YES! YES!  Are you looking for an easy, I can’t put this book down, this is it.  I read it over the summer and it was the best.  The characters are all interesting, they are complex and the plot is a page turner.  I liked it so much that I immediately went to Netflix to watch it on their with a star studded cast with Nicole Kidman, Reese Witherspoon and Laura Dern.

⭐⭐⭐ The Singles Game by Lauren Weisberger  Another easy ready.  Follow a young tennis player as she figures out how to balance the love and determination of being the best, while having a real life and relationships that are based on more than the game.  Beach read.

⭐⭐⭐⭐Sisters Like Us by Susan Mallery
  Another beach read to add to your list.  A lovely read about two sisters, their relationship with their each other, with their mother and with lovers.  I liked it and it was the perfect read on a beach in Mexico.  


⭐⭐ After You by Jojo Moyes  I wanted to like this book because  I loved Me Before You but it just didn't happen.  I don’t think I’ll end up picking up the last book in the installment to be honest.  Skip.

⭐⭐⭐Girl, Stop Apologizing: A Shame-Free Plan for Embracing and Achieving Your Goals by Rachel Hollis  I felt it was very similar to Girl Wash Your Face.  Good messages overall but I felt if you read the other one you can skip this one, or vice versa.

⭐⭐⭐ House of Sand and Fog by Andree Dubus III  I half read it, half listened to it.  Hmmmm.  It’s a story in which you don’t know who to root for.  All the characters are tragic, and the story ends in tragedy.  I don’t think I’d read it again, but it was one that I was conflicted during reading and it kept me reflecting. 

 ⭐⭐A Reliable Wife by Robert Goolrick  A strange novel.  I’ll leave it at that.

⭐⭐Inheritance by Dani Shapiro   I wanted to love it.  In fact I rallied for it with my book club group and then it was not that good.  The writing and the story just didn’t grab or sustain my interest, so I say SKIP it.

I am currently wrapping up 2019 with another easy, beach read, Summer of '69 by Elin Hilderbrant.  

Tell me, what should I read in 2020!