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Lifestyle and Travel Blogger.

Updated: 2018-02-23T07:20:53.590-05:00


Feel Sexy and Stylish With Swimco Swimwear


How do you feel about shopping for swimwear? For some, it can be a less-than-pleasurable experience. I personally love shopping for swimwear because it means I'm heading towards water—and nothing makes me happier than swimming in the ocean or a pool. Going on vacation, especially in the winter, makes me excited—and so does finding the perfect swimsuit to wear while I'm enjoying the sunshine and warm weather. I feel confident in my body, and love wearing bikinis and one-piece suits. I believe there is a perfect suit for everyone, and that everybody should have the confidence to wear what they feel great in when they're on vacation. (And all the time, really). I love being a Brand Ambassador for Swimco because they carry so many swimsuit brands. I quickly found out that shopping for swimwear online with Swimco is an easy and fun experience, because of the wide variety of suits they carry, and because of the excellent customer service. Swimco is a Canadian retailer based out of British Columbia with stores across Canada, including three new stores in Ontario (Mississauga, London, and Hamilton, to be exact). The three-generations family operated business focuses on product fit and body confidence. There is a suit at Swimco for every single body, and I guarantee you will find a suit you love once you're finished shopping with them, either online or in-store.  The stores have trained Fit Experts (they have these experts ready to chat with you online, as well) that will help you find the perfect suit. Their goal? Make every body "feel good half naked." Swimco carries only the best fitting suits, with a focus on style, fashion, and trends that are wearable. With over 150 brands, (the choices are endless!) you're certain to find the one (or two, or three) suit that is perfect for you. I found my new favourite bikini from Swimco, as well as a sexy one-piece bathing suit with cut-outs that I had to have in three colours—black, turquoise, and blue. You'll find more than just swimwear at Swimco, too—they sell adorable beach hats, towels, beach bags, goggles, wraps, and cover-ups. Basically, everything you need for your tropical vacation down south. I love my new swimsuits from Swimco and adore my pom-pom beach hat. Here is a travel tip for you: if you want to pack your wide-brimmed hat in your suitcase, just stuff the top part with smaller items of clothing (like your bikinis) and pack around the hat. Happy travels!Thank you, Swimco—I always love working with you![...]

The Sweetest Gifts To Give For Valentine's Day


Valentine's Day is such a sweet occasion to celebrate, don't you think?  I love doing something sweet with my boys on Valentine's Day, and celebrating with my husband later in the evening (and on the weekend when things slow down a little).Giving a sweet gift for Valentine's Day doesn't have to be complicated.Here are some great Valentine's Day gift ideas I featured on Daytime Ottawa:EbayI'm sure you know online shopping is sweet because it's easy and convenient, but did you know 3/4 of sellers are Canadian, and 80 percent of what is sold is brand new?I partnered with for Valentine's Day and found some truly amazing products that would make the perfect gift for this occasion, like the new Adidas Stella McCartney Sonic Solar Red Running Shoes, retailing for $130, Valentino Valentina Eau de Parfum, $76, and a beautiful Cluse La Boheme watch, selling for $86. Fragrance and jewellery are the perfect gifts to give for Valentine's Day, and a new pair of running shoes will make any fitness lover excited.All these products are new and ship quickly to your location so it's stress-free shopping from eBay. eBay provides endless gift-giving inspiration and access to unique Valetine's Day gifts for everyone in your life. Visit for more gift-giving ideas. Chapters-IndigoShopping at Chapters-Indigo is the best. We love going for the books, but Chapters-Indigo is really your one-stop shop for everything—for any and every occasion. I love the selection of gift-giving items they have, from bags to scarves to candles to home décor items. There are endless ideas at Chapters-Indigo, and you can even shop I love the decorative pillows, mugs, reading socks, journals, and pens—all make great ideas to gift to someone you love (or keep for yourself!) this Valentine's Day. SugarfinaAll you need is candy for Valentine's Day, right? Sugarfina makes adorable Candy Bento Boxes, and you can even design your own XOXO eight piece box to give to a friend or lover. I love these boxes so much and the candy is delicious. You can shop Sugarfina at Nordstrom Ottawa and at Sugarfina stores near you. Purdy's ChocolatesChocolate is always a good idea, even on Valentine's Day, especially if it's good, quality chocolate from Purdy's. Purdy's is Canadian (from beautiful Vancouver, British Columbia) and Purdy's uses only 100% sustainable cocoa. I love all the pretty boxes and selections of chocolate available for Valentine's Day, and making your own box filled with chocolate your favourite person loves the most is a great idea.Elizabeth Arden I'm a beauty lover, and I love makeup and skin care products from Elizabeth Arden. Giving the beauty lover in your life something luxurious from Elizabeth Arden is the perfect Valentine's Day gift. From the Prevage skin care line to the new eye shadow palettes, Elizabeth Arden will make any beauty lover smile this Valentine's Day. Poppy and PeoniesThe new Poppy and Peonies "Have my Heart" bag is the perfect accessory for Valentine's Day. This heart-shaped purse is adorable, fun, playful, and versatile. It retails for $89, converts into a cross-body with a removable strap, and comes with six credit card slots, a cell phone pocket, and a removable keychain you can use all year long. With so many wonderful gift ideas to give (and receive) this Valentine's Day, don't forget the most important thing about the day is celebrating the ones you love. Happy Valentine's Day, everyone!XOXODisclaimer: I have partnered with Purdy's, Sugarfina, eBay, Poppy and Peonies and Chapters-Indigo for my Valentine's Day gift guide segment and post and have received product and/or compensation for my review. All views and opinions are my own.[...]

Make Your Galentine's Day Sparkle With La Marca Prosecco


Valentine's Day is tomorrow, but today is all about celebrating the other important people in your life: your best friends! Yes, February 13th is Galentine's Day, and it's the perfect day to indulge in the things you love with your closest girlfriends.

A great way to celebrate Galentinen's Day? With some bubbly, of course! I love La Marca Prosecco for any occasion, and today calls for some bottle-popping for sure. This sparkly and elegant Italian Prosecco is delicious, affordable, and the perfect bubbly to elevate the everyday with a touch a luxury and sparkle. (And the bottle is oh-so-pretty, too!).

Here are five ways you can celebrate Galentine's Day with your best girls and La Marca Prosecco:

1. If you love savoury foods, ditch the sweet and switch to rich, salty appetizers. La Marca Prosecco pairs perfectly with olives, cheese, crab cakes and prosciutto. Yum!

2. Host a DIY night. Whether you make homemade terrariums, body scrubs, or bath bombs, find something fun you can all do together while sipping your Prosecco. And if you totally suck at DIY (like me) don't worry about it. Just have fun watching.

3. Host a secret Galentine's gift exchange. Instead of gifting the obvious selections like chocolates or flowers, give something unique like a book you know your girlfriends will love, gourmet gummies, or a scented candle.

4. Grab a bowl of popcorn and a glass of La Marca Prosecco and screen everyone's favourite fearless movie that features bold, strong women—like Clueless or Legally Blonde.

5. Treat your girlfriends to a Prosecco and Pedi's night. Whether you do this at home or at your local spa there is no better way to celebrate your friendship on Galentine's Day.

Enjoy your night celebrating the women (and men!) in your life.

Happy Galentine's Day!

Disclaimer: I have partnered with La Marca Prosecco and have received product for my review. All views and opinions are my own.

Keeping Things Green With ReThink Tires


Winter is my least favourite season of all. One thing I really dislike about it (besides the snow, cold, ice, and darkness) is the mess. As soon as we come inside and take off our boots, our entrance way is wet, with snow everywhere. Of course, stepping in puddles of slush is no fun, either.I love simple solutions for keeping my entrance way looking as neat and clean as possible, since it's the first thing people see when they walk into my home. We have mirrored closet doors, hooks to hang up our coats, a neat shoe compartment from IKEA built on a wall, and now, thanks to Ontario Tire Stewardship, two products that make our entrance way cleaner.Ontario Tire Stewardship is a not-for-profit organization championing waste diversion that works with a network of industry partners to collect and recycle used tired. OTS's Used Tires program has successfully diverted more than 100 million tires from landfills since 2009. The tires get safely recycled into new products, leading to hundreds of new jobs in this province, making communities more livable, and helping grow a green economy.  I received the Traffic Master Scalloped Master Boot Tray– an essential product that holds all our boots so our floors aren't soaked with mud and slush anymore. The boot tray traps the wetness and dirt, and with its raised design, floors remain clean. It's also simple to clean, too.Another product I received is the Traffic Master Recycled Rubber Floormat. I put this down in our entrance way, and it does the trick to keep things clean. It's durable and eco-friendly with a non-slip backing to reduce movement and help prevent accidents. Since it's weather-resistant and stain-resistant, this mat is ideal for outdoor use at the front door, patio, and garage in the summertime, too.I love that the products I'm using have been made from recycled tires; besides being environmentally friendly, these products are also fire-resistant, long-lasting, durable and low-maintenance, and cost-effective. And every little bit we can do to help the environment is a good thing.Visit to see a wide variety of recycled rubber mats and other great products that will help keep your hallway clean–and say goodbye to puddles and wet socks. You can even drop off your old tires at a registered collector near you. If you're doing any home renovation projects, is a great resource for information on sustainable recycled tire products and projects, too.Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post in partnership with Ontario Tire Stewardship. I received compensation and products for my review. All views and opinions are my own.  [...]

Great Sleep Made Simple With Casper


If you're looking for a mattress that's going to change your life and sleeping habits for the better, look no further than Casper. Casper, only a few years old, has become one of the most loved mattresses of all time and has basically revolutionized how people sleep–and shop–for mattresses. The bedroom is where the magic happens, after all.We just completed our master bedroom renovations, (thanks to my husband for installing our new hardwood floors, painting the walls, assembling our new furniture, and putting together our Casper) and our bed is our favourite part of our new room.Why do we love the Casper mattress so much? Simply put, it's the most comfortable bed we've ever slept on, and this includes all the wonderful beds we've experienced in all our favourite hotels.Why is everyone obsessed with the Casper mattress? Here are just some reasons: 1. The Casper mattress is comfortable. It's a perfect combination of a breathable, open-cell comfort layer and memory foam, offering incredible support, no matter your sleep position.2. It's a hassle-free shopping experience. Casper conveniently ships to you in a compact-sized box, making it easy to transport up and down stairs. All you have to do is open the box, and your mattress is ready to go. Casper makes shopping simple and painless.3. They have excellent customer service. All mattresses (as well as the Casper line of sheets, pillows, and duvets) come with a 100-night, risk-free trial.This means you can sleep on your sheets, relax on your new pillows, and try out your new mattress for 100 days and if you're not completely in love with it all (but you will be, trust me) they'll send over a courier and remove the products from your home and donate them to a local charity or have them recycled.4. Casper foams are certified Certipur, which means they're ultra-low VOC and held to the highest environmental production standards. So there is no weird smell like some memory foam mattresses tend to have. It's perfect to sleep on from day one.5. You'll sleep better. We went from a Queen to a King, and it was the best decision ever. But beyond the larger size of our bed, the Casper mattress makes sleeping more enjoyable because of the combination of pressure-relieving memory foam under a springy, breathable comfort layer. The top layer provides just enough sink, so you'll always feel fully supported by the pressure-relieving memory foam layer underneath.6. You'll sleep cool. No more getting hot in the middle of the night. The Casper is designed to help you sleep cool, thanks to the open-cell top layer which uses convection and conduction to flow heat away from your body. Also, the memory foam layer leverages airflow to pull heat out of the top layer, leaving you cool and comfortable all night long.7. They did their research. Casper mattresses are as comfortable as they because of the intensive research and continuous development from their San Francisco research and development team. Casper mattresses have received incredible praise from Consumer Reports, and Casper was named one of Time magazine's best inventions.8. It's popular. And rightly so. Casper has quickly become one of the fastest growing consumer brands of all time.9. The Casper mattress is backed by a 10-year warranty, so no matter what happens along the way, you know you're safe and protected.10. They sell it all. Casper not only sells comfortable mattresses in all sizes, they sell the foundation and bed frame that also ship in compact boxes to your home, and are easy to assemble. (Super easy, in fact). The Casper foundation works like a standard box spring, and is engineered to provide excellent support under any mattress. As much as we love the mattress, sheet set (the fitted sheets are a dream, and the duvet is oh-so-cozy) their pillows are amazing, too. The Casper pillow-in-a-pillow is designed to stay supportive, cool, and comfortable all night long, regardless of sleeping position. It's got th[...]

NABOB Coffee Prize Pack


What's your morning routine like? If it's anything like mine, it's a little crazy. My children are up at the same time as me (super early in the morning, usually around 6 a.m.) and from that moment on, it's go-go-go until they're at school and I'm at work–where I finally get to enjoy my first cup of coffee. Weekends are a little more relaxed–I'm able to sip my coffee at home before we start the day.

I can't imagine life without coffee–I usually have about two to three cups a day (is that bad? Please tell me it's not bad). I love finding out that brands I love are giving back in great ways, and recently, NABOB partnered with Tree Canada to encourage Canadians to take the NABOB Pod Pledge.

For every Canadian that commits to recycling their NABOB pods, NABOB and Tree Canada will plant a tree in an area of need across Canada. So it's a win-win situation: you enjoy your coffee guilt-free and help give back to the environment at the same time! You can do your part by visiting NABOB.CA.

To help spread the good news, I'm giving away a package to three of you coffee-loving readers which includes NABOB coffee, a coffee traveler mug, a tree sapling to plant at home, and a sugar and cream set, valued at $100.

Just leave me a comment below telling me how you take your coffee and make sure to visit to take the #NABOBPodPledge. I'll select my winners randomly on January 16th.

Good Luck!

Disclaimer: I have partnered with and have received product and/or compensation for my post. All views and opinions are my own. 

New Year, New You In 2018


Happy New Year! I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season. Now that the new year has started, it's time to get serious about sticking to those resolutions. This year, it's all about eating right, getting your beauty sleep, working out, and taking care of your skin.Here are some tips on how you can be your best self in 2018:Eat RightWe all want to eat healthy. I know no one is counting calories in December, but now that January is here, it's time to get back to eating smart. As someone who is always on the go with two busy kids, this is an area I struggle with. Working downtown can make choosing a healthy lunch difficult, but luckily I work close to Mad Radish. This Ottawa-based restaurant has great plant-based options to make healthy eating simple, delicious, and nutritious. My favourite is their Smoky Caesar salad–with a twist. This salad includes romaine and kale, garlic-marinated chickpeas, and broccoli. Instead of parmesan cheese, it's topped with a tasty cashew "parmesan" and a creamy vegan dressing. It's so good–guaranteed to become your favourite, too.Second Cup is one of my go-to coffee shops for my morning caffeine fix and I'm so glad they have introduced their new Clean Label beverages, eliminating artificial colours, flavours, preservatives, and high fructose corn syrup from all beverages on the menu–including latte's, cappuccino's, smoothies, and hot chocolate.Whether you love cooking or not, having the right cookware and kitchen appliances can make a huge difference. I don't enjoy cooking, but I do love my new Paderno cookware, especially my Paderno frying pan. Paderno is also the only Canadian cookware manufacturer, 100 percent Canadian-made, and lasts for an eternity. You'll totally have a different outlook on cooking once you start using Paderno. (Available at Canadian Tire).And if you're looking for new and easy to prepare recipes, check out The School Year Survival Cookbook. Guaranteed to make meal planning a breeze, even with a hectic lifestyle.Get Your Beauty Sleep And Relax I usually don't get more than five hours of sleep a night; I'm a night owl, and am most awake after 10 p.m. Falling asleep after midnight and waking up at 6 a.m. can take a toll on a person after a while, though, so I'm determined to start sleeping earlier this year, because sleeping well actually helps with maintaining a healthy body and even helps with weight loss.I'm so thrilled that I recently partnered with Casper, (full review coming soon!) and received an incredible king-sized bed for our newly renovated bedroom.  The Casper mattress is the most comfortable I've ever slept on. Casper,  much-loved mattress-in-a-box company, has become one of the fastest growing consumer brands of all time. Casper includes a full line of mattresses, bed frames, foundation, pillows, sheet sets, and duvets, all created by a team of engineers, researchers, and scientists.The Casper mattress is available in six standard sizes, and backed by a 10-year warranty. It has supportive memory foam and a springy comfort layer that come together to create a perfect sleep surface. Casper’s foundation ships in a compact box just like the mattress and works like a standard box spring. It’s engineered to provide excellent support under any mattress. Casper’s metal bed fame is the perfect frame for your Casper foundation and mattress. We just added a head board and now we have the most perfect bed ever. The Casper pillow-in-a-pillow is designed to stay supportive, cool, and comfortable throughout the night, regardless of sleep position. With just the right balance of squish and support, the inner pillow is supportive, while the outer pillow adds a soft comfort. Fine, silky fibers allow the pillow to keep its perfect shape, finished with breathable percale cotton to sleep cool all night long. Total bliss!Casper’s cotton percale sheets are crisp, smo[...]

Falling In Love With Bulova


What is the perfect gift to give someone who has it all? I think jewellery is always the answer, no matter who you are shopping for–especially if it's for someone who really appreciates the finer things in life.

A classic, stylish watch from Bulova is a wonderful gift to give someone you love this holiday season, and it's a gift you know they'll cherish forever.

I was so fortunate to receive a new, limited-edition Bulova Rubaiyat watch, and I can't seem to take it off. It has everything you'd want in a high-quality piece of jewellery–including diamonds that sparkle when the light hits the right way. My Rubaiyat watch has 50 diamonds individually hand-set with a textured grey dial, double curved sapphire crystal, and a stainless steel bracelet with double-press deployant closure, featuring the iconic "Goddess of Time" dimensional case back. It's modern, stylish, and classic–a watch to wear all the time, for years to come.

The Bulova Rubaiyat watch is a gift that will be treasured for life. After all, the Bulova Rubaiyat watch is a timeless piece of jewellery you can wear all the time, no matter the occasion. Each timepiece is beautifully adorned with individually hand-cut diamonds and, to echo the original design, a unique cabochon-brown placement at the 12 o'clock position.

You can choose from stainless, gold-tone, rose-gold tone cases and bracelets as well as an elegant leather strap–and all are just stunning. The watch is also water-resistant to 30 metres.

Bulova watches are available for purchase at Hudston's Bay–basically your one-stop department store for all the gifts you need to buy for those on your list this holiday season.

Thank you, Bulova, for making my holiday season shine so bright.

Happy shopping!

2017 Holiday Gift Guide


With the festive season officially underway, I put together my 2017 holiday gift guide just in time for you to hit the mall. I featured some amazing products on CTV yesterday, but didn't have enough time to talk about everything on-air, so all the details are here to make your holiday shopping a breeze.For the beauty lover:Clarins: Clarins is one of my favourite skin-care companies. The 12 Days of Christmas Advent Calendar is the perfect gift to give someone to start celebrating the holiday season early, because they'll receive a little gift every day for 12 days. It contains two full-sized products and 10 discovery-sized products, which are much larger than sample size. It’s exclusively available at The Bay and on It retails for $92, with a  value of $174.  The Essentials Winter Palette: The Essential Eye Palette by Clarins is a holiday exclusive with sales going to support indigenous communities of the Brazilian Amazon. It available for $62, and comes with ten eye shadow palettes, inspired by the shades of winter. It contains 4 different textures: 5 pearl-finish shades, 1 silvery diamond pop, 3 satin-finish shades, and 1 matte shade.Caudalie: Caudile is incredible skin care for anyone, and I love the pretty holiday gift boxes the make giving the perfect gift that much easier. This set includes the best-selling Vinoperfect Complexion Correcting Radiance Serum, (an immediate brightening boost to the skin), Caudalie's Brightening Essense, and the Vinoperfect Overnight Renewal Cream, a cream that works overnight to resurface, brighten, and detoxify the skin. Find it in stores for $89.Elizabeth Arden: I can’t get enough of Elizabeth Arden skin care products. The Ceramide Eye and Face Capsules are a must for my day and night routine. These products leave skin feeling soft and moisturized. They are the perfect capsules to protect your skin from the elements of winter, and they help prevent fine lines and wrinkles. The Prevage line from Arden is my ultimate favourite; the Prevage Daily Serum, together with the Prevage anti-aging morning and night cream, work incredibly well to reduce the visible signs of aging, targeting wrinkles, sun damage, age-spots, and discoloration. These products help improve the look of firmness, tone, and radiance. Another great product to gift the beauty lover in your life is the SUPERSTART Skin Renewal Booster, which supports the surface layer of the skin. The ultra-lightweight, fast-absorbing formula is clinically proven to restore the healthy appearance of the surface of the skin for smooth, more radiant looking skin. Elizabeth Arden has all your make-up needs covered, too, with their luscious Plush Up Lip Gelato in a variety of bright colours, like Flirty Fuschia and Berry Burst, Cool Glow Cheek Tint in Pink Perfection, the Four Ever Bronzer Bronzing Powder, and my ultimate favourite, especially for those hot summer days (or your winter trip down south) the Elizabeth Arden Bronzing Oil, making your skin look shiny, bronzed, and making it feel silky smooth. Moroccan Oil: For hair that shines, feels healthy, and smells absolutely delicious, use Moroccan Oil. From shampoo and conditioner to their oil, they are the perfect hair care products to use and gift this holiday season. NYX Cosmeics: One of my favourite gifts to give this year is the NYX Advent Calendar. It’s a fun calendar with 24 days of beautiful, colourful lipsticks and lip gloss. Get Holiday Glam with this NYX makeup advent calendar, the perfect gift to give or keep for yourself as you count down the days until Christmas. Skinceuticals: Great skin care products that truly take care of your skin. To maintain and improve skin health, an effective skin care regimen must contain three elements: prevention, protectio[...]

Stay Warm This Winter With Columbia


Now that winter is here, I'm officially in hibernation mode. I don't like the cold or the snow, and I already miss the warmer days of summer. However, as a Canadian I have come to accept that we're left with no choice but to embrace these chilly days, and the only way to truly enjoy winter and the great outdoors is to dress appropriately in the right winter gear, and to get out and have some fun.

When I'm dressed warm, I can handle whatever winter throws my way (except maybe a crazy blizzard, though we haven't had any of those yet this year).

I was given the new Columbia Women's Heavenly Light Hooded Jacket to review, (along with the Men's Voodoo Falls Turndown 590 Jacket) and I absolutely love my new jacket! Spending time outside hasn't been painful at all. This jacket is sleek, stylish, long, and lightweight. It keeps me cozy and warm no matter what activities I'm doing outside, and I've received so many compliments. I love how light-weight it is, and how it truly goes with everything.

The jacket combines a light yet toasty synthetic down insulation and a thermal-reflective lining for bonus warmth without the bulk. The shell fabric resists wet weather, while the flattering, longer cut and comfort cuffs (with awesome thumbholes) provide excellent overage from the chill. This jacket retails at select retailers in Canada and online for $189.99.

The Men's Voodoo Falls Turndown 590 Jacket is a perfect coat for my youngest son to wear on these chilly days. He loves it because it's not bulky, it keeps him wear, and he can easily move around in this coat, making play time that much more fun.

The Voodoo Fall 590 Turbodown jacket retains nearly every degree of body heat and is one of the warmest, softest, and lightest jackets Columbia makes. It's durable, water-resistant shell with grid baffling provides a snug, close-to-body look and feel, and it's made with 100% responsibly sourced down, because Columbia is committed to ensuring the highest industry animal welfare guidelines.

I have always been a huge Columbia fan, and I am so pleased with these new jackets to help us get through these next few months.

I think a Columbia jacket would make an absolutely perfect holiday gift to give someone you love this season. It'll be the gift your special someone will wear every day.

Thank you, Columbia!

Netflix: Your Must-Have Travel Essential


As the holiday season approaches, many families will be travelling to get away from the cold or to visit their families in other cities.

While we stay close to home for the holidays, we area already planning our annual winter getaway to south Florida. I am so looking forward to feeling the warm sunshine on my skin again, and spending hours on the beach and by the pool–pina colada in hand!

My boys have always been excellent travellers, even on long flights overseas. While I help them pack their carry-on bags, I make sure I have all their favourite Netflix shows and movies downloaded. After all,  travelling can be chaotic at times, so why not take a little time before you leave to make sure your kids have what they need to stay entertained, and not annoyed, during your travels?

If you travel often enough, you will know that sometimes, the unexpected can happen–delayed flights, lost luggage, long line-ups, and more–and I find that if my boys have their headphones and a few of their favourite movies downloaded on their iPads they are okay with anything that gets thrown our way. 1 in 5 Canadian parents say one of their main concerns when travelling is keeping their kids entertained. Netflix is all the entertainment you need to keep your kids (and yourself!) happy, no matter how long the flight or airport wait.

Downloading our favourites movies and shows (or movies we haven't seen yet) are always on the top of our travel 'to-do' list before each trip. With shows like Fuller House and Stranger Things (a favourite of my boys!) there is so much to choose from to keep everyone happy. (And if you haven't seen Stranger Things 2 yet, what are you waiting for? It is so good–even better than the first season).

Happy holiday travelling, and happy streaming, everyone!

Disclaimer: I am part of the Netflix Stream Team. As part of my affiliation with this group, I receive special perks. 

Ottawa Senators And Canadian Tire Gift Card Giveaway (Go Sens Go!)


I don't think you can be Canadian and not love hockey, one of the greatest sports on earth. Although I don't love winter, hockey season excites me, and I'm a huge Ottawa Senators fan. I was so excited and hopeful last year that the Sens would finally win the Stanley Cup–and they came so very close.  The last time I was that excited for the playoffs was years ago, and I remember being absolutely heartbroken when the Sens lost.This time around, my youngest son joined in my excitement and we were lucky to attend a couple of playoff games to cheer on our favourite hockey team. The excitement at a Sens game is incredible, and it was even more awesome to see it all through my son's eyes.With the holidays around the corner, wouldn't it be a great idea to give the Senators fan in your life a little something to make them cheer even louder this year? Canadian Tire is giving Ottawa families a head start by helping turn local babies into the next generation of Sens fans with brand new Ottawa Senators onesie, or Sensie.Canadian Tire is giving away a free Sensie to customers in Ottawa while supplies last. All you have to do is register online at to receive a voucher which can be redeemed at a local participating Canadian Tire store.Since it's the holiday season, I'm giving away TWO exclusive Baby Superfan Kits which  include everything the baby in your life needs to become a super Sens fan: a Sensie, protective ear muffs, a Sparticat plush mascot, a bib, and a Canadian Tire gift card. (This is valued at $100). To enter just leave a comment below or on my Instagram page, and I will pick a winner randomly on December 11th. (Please remember to leave your email address so I can contact you if you win). Good Luck, Happy Holidays, and... GO SENS GO!Disclaimer: I have received product/compensation in partnership with Canadian Tire. All views and opinions are my own.[...]

Giving Back With Rice Krispies and #TreatsForToys


The holidays are my favourite time of the year—after summer, of course.

I love everything about this season: shopping for presents for everyone on my list, writing Christmas cards, wrapping gifts, decorating the house with my family, watching holiday movies, attending and hosting festive parties, and of course, the most important thing of all—giving back, in big and small ways, to those who deserve it the most.

The Kellogg's Rice Krispies #TreatsForToys campaign is back, helping kids during the holidays in a great way. In partnership with The Salvation Army, Canadian families are encouraged to create a toy-shaped Rice Krispies treat and submit a photo of it on, or share on social media with the hashtag #TreatsForToys.

For every photo of your Rice Krispies creation you share online, (and it doesn't have to be anything really creative; it is, after all, the thought that counts!) Kellogg's Rice Krispies will donate $20 to The Salvation Army for the purchase of a real toy for a Canadian child in need during the holiday season.

I had a lot of fun making Rice Krispies treats with my youngest son over the weekend—he basically made three batches all by himself, which made me so very happy because now he can take over all the baking duties in our house—phew!

I'm spreading the love and giving away a great Kellogg's package to help you take part with your family, too.

Included in the package: two holiday edition Rice Krispies boxes, candy for decorating your creations, marshmallows, and some amazing Paderno mixing bowls. All you have to do is make some tasty treats which will help create lasting memories for deserving children.

Leave me a comment below telling me what you love most about the holiday season, and I'll pick a winner randomly on Friday, December 8th.

Make. Share. Give. Good Luck!

Weekend Escape To The Adelaide Hotel In Toronto


If you're looking for a quick weekend escape but don't want to travel too far, head to Toronto. This incredible city in the heart of Ontario always has something exciting going on for the entire family. Every trip to Toronto allows me to experience something new, from dining to shopping. When I have the itch to go to New York City, sometimes a trip to Toronto is all I need to get my fix.Where to stay:I had the pleasure of experiencing the luxurious Adelaide Hotel in downtown Toronto. This AAA-Five-Diamond luxury hotel opened it's doors this past summer on the corner of Bay and Adelaide, and it's simply stunning—from the chic décor to the large suites, it took my breath away. When you're staying in a luxury hotel like The Adelaide, you'll be blown away with the beauty as soon as you walk in the front doors. Check-in, as expected, was a joyful experience. It's the friendly, personalized service, and attention to detail, that made our stay here so wonderful. The Adelaide Hotel was named the 11th top luxury hotel in Canada by Conde Nast Traveler Reader's Choice Awards, and rated the 2nd most luxurious hotel in Toronto—and it's easy to see why.We stayed in a large two-bedroom suite, with a stunning marbled entrance leading to the dining room and kitchen. The chandelier over the dining room table was stunning, and so were the views of downtown Toronto from the floor-to-ceiling windows. The two-bedrooms in the spacious suite each have their own full-sized bathrooms, and the living room, complete with fireplace, was a perfect place to retreat to at the end of the night. Of course, the turndown service is welcoming when you've been out exploring Toronto for hours of end, and the beds? So very comfortable.The Adelaide Hotel has an incredible spa, where I was lucky to enjoy a full-body one-hour massage, and later spend some time swimming in the huge infinity pool with my youngest son. (We loved the hot tub, as well). From the service to the amenities, and breakfast on the top floor restaurant, it was a perfect stay, and I can't wait to return. In case you didn't know, the Adelaide Hotel will be transitioning to Canada's first St. Regis hotel in late 2018, and although the transition hasn't happened yet, there is nothing lacking at this luxury hotel. St. Regis Toronto will bring with it all that St. Regis hotels are known for, including the amazing rituals and services, like the Butler Service and Afternoon Tea. I can't wait to experience Canada's first St. Regis hotel when the transformation is complete. Although it's hard leaving a hotel as luxurious as the Adelaide Hotel, it's fun to explore Toronto and enjoy the many fine places to dine, for lunch or dinner. Where to dine:CN Tower 360 restaurant: The CN Tower is a must-see when you're in Toronto, especially if you're visiting the city for the first time. I have been to the CN Tower many times, with and without my children, but I have never been to the top to dine at the 360 restaurant. The CN Tower's 351-metre high revolving restaurant offers the most spectacular views of the city, and you're able to see it all, from every angle, because it makes a complete revolution every hour or so. This was so fun for my youngest son, who enjoyed the views almost as much as he enjoyed his meal. We ordered several sides, including sweet potato fries, mashed potatoes, and vegetables, and all were equally delicious—so was the filet mignon and chicken Quebec. All ingredients are Canadian, for a truly authentic and very tasty experience. Cibo Wine Bar: I love Cibo Wine Bar and have been several times. This truly delicious, vibrant, and modern Italian restaurant has tw[...]

A Luxurious Stay At The Four Seasons Hotel Toronto


When you check in to a Four Seasons Hotel, no matter where you are in the world, you know you'll be experiencing the most luxurious, memorable stay—and incredible service from the moment you check-in.I had the chance to review the beautiful Four Seasons Hotel in Toronto, situated in the upscale Yorkville neighbourhood. This hotel is one of the tallest in the area, at 55 storeys—and it is breathtakingly beautiful as soon as you walk in the front doors. The flowers in the lobby area are so colourful and welcoming. The Four Seasons Hotel Toronto was designed by Yabu Pushelberg, so I instantly felt like I was back at the Four Seasons New York. There were many similarities between the two properties, like the incredible service one can only expect to receive at hotels of this calibre.Yorkville is known for its fine shopping—from luxury boutiques to department stores like Holt Renfrew—to fine dining, and the Four Seasons Hotel is a perfect addition to the neighbourhood. It's no surprise that this beautiful luxury hotel in Yorkville was the first in Canada to receive the AAA Five Diamond and Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star rating.Here's what I loved about the Four Seasons Toronto:Unwinding in the spa: When choosing which hotel I want to stay at, I always check to see if they have a spa and a swimming pool. I usually travel with my family, including my children, and they always love spending time in hotel pools. The Four Seasons Toronto has a 30,000 square-foot state-of-the-art spa, one of the largest in Toronto, with 17 spacious treatments rooms, two steam rooms, and a salon with hair, manicure, and pedicure stations. A hair salon in a hotel spa is my dream come true... there's nothing better than getting a for a full-body massage, followed by a blow-dry, and at this spa, you can indulge in both services. The pool is large and next to it, an outdoor terrace overlooking Toronto.Relaxing in the rooms: The Four Seasons Hotel Toronto has 259 rooms, including 42 suites. The spacious rooms are simply beautiful, with floor-to-ceiling windows, comfortable couches, and luxurious beds. My favourite part is the dream bathroom—a large granite room with a deep, fast-filling tub, separate glass-walled rain shower, extra-long vanity counter, and an in-mirror television to enjoy while taking a bath. The rooms at Four Seasons are relaxing, calming, and ultra-luxurious, and the turn-down service at night is the best—it's the little extra touches that make staying at a Four Seasons so memorable. In-room and restaurant dining: I always like to experience the in-room dining options when I'm reviewing hotels, and the Four Seasons Toronto did not disappoint, from their perfectly brewed latte to their delicious breakfast parfait; it was a great start to my day. The resto-Café Boulud is a well-known hot-spot in Yorkville, too, located on the second floor of the Four Seasons Hotel. The menu, inspired by Chef Daniel Boulud's family's meals in Lyon, France, will make you feel like you're having lunch in Paris. The kitchen features a rotisserie, apparently the only one of its kind in downtown Toronto, with both vertical and horizontal spits. You'll love the delicious French cuisine. Once you're finished dining, make sure to check out d bar, on the main floor of the hotel, for after dinner cocktails, wine, or snacks. (A DJ also plays late into the evenings). During your next trip to Toronto—whether you're travelling with your family, escaping for the weekend with your loved one, or getting away with friends—do yourself a favour, and book yourself a stay at the lux[...]

From Italy With Amore


Anyone who knows me can attest I'm not a huge fan of cooking, as much as I enjoy a delicious home-cooked meal. However, I'm lucky to have a husband, parents, and in-laws who can cook amazingly well. Despite the fact that I don't love getting dirty in the kitchen, I'm great at making a few meals my children (thankfully!) love, and most of those meals are Italian.I was so excited to be invited to Toronto this week along with several other bloggers to indulge in an authentic taste of Italy, and meet and learn from Italian Chef Massimo Bruno. We took part, as well—preparing some pretty simple recipes that I know will be a huge hit at home. Best of all? The meals we learned to cook involve only a few key ingredients, so prep time is simple, and takes almost no time at all to actually cook... and serve. (Which is perfect when you're heading home late from work and the children are starving). We sampled delicious Italian cheese and appetizers, drank wine, and got our hands a little dirty preparing food in a really fun atmosphere.I primarily shops at Loblaw's, so I was so happy to learn that I can find authentically Italian ingredients at my favourite grocery store, including extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, tuna in olive oil, pasta, strained tomatoes, and a huge variety of cheeses. The From Italy with Amore program, now in stores, showcases 350 products certified as authentic by the Italian Trade Commission. Some products I love include Mutti Passata, Delverde Pasta, PC Tuscany Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Rio Mare Tuna in Water (or Olive Oil), PC Splendido Balsamic Vinegar of Modena—2 Leaf. With Loblaw's as my go-to store and knowing they carry only the best for my authentic Italian cooking nights, I'm ready (with some new recipes in mind!) to surprise my family with a delicious meal they'll love. After all, we are Greek and Italian... Mangiamo! Disclaimer: In partnership with Loblaw's, I have been compensated for my post and social shares. All views and opinions are my own. [...]

Taking Care Of Your Skin With Dermis Advanced Skin Care And Medi Clinic


I'm serious about taking care of my skin. That's why I love trying new products, and sticking to my skin care routine every morning and night. (I'll never not wash off my make-up before bed!). There are many fabulous products I love using that help keep my skin looking good, and as I get older, I realize there are more ways to help take care of my skin to keep it looking—and feeling—incredible.

I was recently introduced to Dermis Advanced Skin Care and Medi Clinic, and attended their 11th Annual Customer Appreciation Event to find out more about the products and services they provide.

I spoke with the owner, a truly educated and experienced woman, who answered all my questions, and told me about the services their clinic provides customers. The list of services varies from lifting and firming to deep cleansing and exfoliation, acne skin treatments, Botox and Juvederm injections, and so much more—like wrinkle and scar reduction. Everyone's skin has different needs and if you're unsure of what you need, you can go to Dermis for a free consultation, and have all your questions answered. I believe taking care of your skin and your body from the inside out can truly make a difference in how you feel about yourself. There's nothing better than feeling confident in the skin you're in, and giving yourself some extra TLC when you can.

I love that Dermis also provides laser hair removal, an excellent and efficient service that leaves your skin smooth forever. Dermis only uses the Cutera Excel HR laser, which is the latest laser approved by both Health Canada and the FDA, featuring brand new dual-wave technology and triple Sapphire cooling for comfortable treatments.

Even after one initial visit to find out about what types of services I'd be interest in, I felt comfortable and trusted the owner and her team. With over 10 years of experience and a Medical Director and Nurse Practitioner on-site, it's a comforting feeling knowing you'll be taken care of by the best while you take care of yourself.

Thanks for the great service, Dermis—I'll be back soon.

Disclaimer: I received compensation as part of my collaboration with Dermis Advanced Skin Care and Medi Clinic. All views and opinions are my own.

Get Spooked With Season Two of Stranger Things On Netflix This Halloween


With fall definitely in the air now—cooler temperatures, the beautiful changing colours on the trees, the return of pumpkin-flavoured everything—it's time to start think about Halloween. I always loved Halloween but when I became a mom it became even more fun for me, because I found there was nothing cuter than dressing up my boys in adorable costumes, going trick-or-treating, and helping my little ones consume all their delicious candy. (As a parent, that's totally allowed, you know!).

This year, we've got something else to be excited about: the return of Stranger Things on Netflix. Our boys are older now—12 and nine years old—and we all watched Stranger Things together months ago when it first came out on Netflix. My boys loved it, and it wasn't too scary for them, though there were definitely some jump-out-of-our-seats scenes.

This Halloween, we have a plan: go trick-or-treating to as many homes as possible, come home, turn off the lights, get under the blankets, (sugary treats in hand) and start watching Season Two of Stranger Things.

I love that we can watch as many episodes as we want on Netflix in one night. We probably won't get through the entire series on Halloween night, but I know it'll only be a matter of days before we're finished Season Two. Have you watched Stranger Things yet? If you haven't, I highly recommend it, because it's an incredible series, from the story to the acting. (And it's great seeing Winona Ryder again—she's as talented as ever!).

There is truly always something to enjoy on Netflix, and it is the only way our family watches television, whether it's a series we love, like Stranger Things, or a movie. And now that colder days are here, we all have more time to stay indoors and catch up on all the great shows and movies on Netflix.

Disclaimer: I am part of the Netflix Stream Team. As part of my affiliation with this group, I receive special perks and products.

Stepping Out In Style With Roz + Loki Dress Shirts


Sometimes, getting dressed for work every morning can be more challenging than fun. Although closet is full of clothes—countless dresses, pants, and sweaters—often I feel I have nothing to wear, and finding the perfect outfit in my closet isn't always easy. As much as I look forward to waking up each day, getting my children ready for school, and heading downtown to work, trying to decide what to wear can be frustrating.

I recently discovered roz + loki, a company that designed a truly innovative and high-quality dress shirt that's the perfect addition to a stylish outfit for the work day... and after-work dinner and drinks.

These shirts come in a variety of styles and colours (I love the black one I received) and they are the perfect addition to any woman's wardrobe; they are comfortable, form-fitting, stylish, and made with Supima cotton that resists pilling, fading and tearing, and 10% lycra for that form-fitting look. Best part? They're made in Canada. The shirts retail for $200 and they'll easily become a wardrobe staple. Sometimes, spending money on classic pieces of clothing is worth it, because you'll definitely wear these items over and over again.

I love wearing this shirt with a pair of skinny black pants and ankle boots for fall. The shirt falls longer than most typical dress shirts, with a jacket-like finish at the back for that extra polished look, whether you're wearing it tucked or un-tucked. There is even an extra absorption layer in the underarm area to prevent staining, which I think is simply brilliant.

Not only are you supporting a great Canadian company and looking super stylish when you're dressed in a roz + loki shirt, you're also giving back, because $10 from each shirt sold goes to either Sick Kids Foundation or Make A Wish Foundation. I love supporting both these organizations. When you know your money is supporting a good cause, it's guilt-free shopping at its best.

Happy shopping, everyone.

Disclaimer: I have collaborated with roz + loki for my review. All views and opinions are my own.

Put Your Best Foot Forward For Fall


I have enjoyed every minute of this September heat wave, but today there was a chill in the air and it's clear that fall is back, much to my dismay.As much as I wish summer would last forever, I'm going to embrace the good things that come with fall: enjoying the colours of the changing leaves, leaving the windows open for that early morning breeze, and transitioning my closet to fall–I love comfy sweaters and skinny jeans, dresses worn with tights, and knee-high boots. All types of boots, actually. Putting away the summer wardrobe is never easy, but having some great boots to take you through the change of seasons makes it a little less painful. My favourite stores to shop at for boots and shoes for fall include Nine West, Ecco, GEOX, Aldo, Le Chateau, and Call It Spring.Here are some boots I'm loving:ECCO: For high-quality boots that will last longer than the snow on the ground, ECCO is where you want to shop. Guaranteed style, comfort and warmth for winter days that are just around the corner. Ecco is a must for those who love to look good and love good quality.GEOX: GEOX is known for breathable, high-performance shoes and boots for the entire family. For the last couple of years, I have found my favourite pair of stylish knee-boots, the one fashion accessory every woman needs in her closet for fall. (I just love the look of a little dress with tights and knee-boots).Le Chateau: Canadian company Le Chateau has everything you need for fall and winter, including an incredible selection of shoes and boots that are always in style. From block heels to stilettos, there is something at Le Chateau for every fashionista who doesn't want to break the bank while looking good.Call It Spring: I was recently introduced to Call It Spring, and I love the many styles of boots and shoes they have in-store. It definitely doesn't have to be spring to shop here, and I love the affordable prices. Call It Spring has a great selection of boots for fall and winter, and they also have stylish and oh-so-pretty heels for every occasion, too, from black to blue and every other colour in between.Aldo: Aldo Shoes is one of my favourite go-to places to shop for shoes no matter the season, and they always have an incredible selection of boots for fall and winter, whether you're looking for something casual and comfortable or dressy and elegant. I love these suede platform-heeled booties that look perfect with skinny jeans and an oversized sweater–the perfect fall outfit.Nine West: I usually shop Nine West for my heels, but Nine West also carries an excellent selection of boots to keep you warm throughout the fall and winter months. Nine West is known for comfort, style, and quality, so when you're splurging on boots, it's worth it, because they'll last season after season. I love their gorgeous selection of ankle booties, too–they go perfect with black tights and a little black dress.Native: Native is a great shoe company that's also environmentally conscious and vegan. Their vision in footwear is "Keep it Lite", and these practical boots for fall and winter will make you feel like you're walking on air–they're seriously that comfortable. At affordable prices and with the ease of online shopping, Native is a great idea for fall.Happy shopping, everyone! I hope you find just what you're looking for this fall.Disclaimer: I partnered up with Nine West, Ecco, GEOX, Aldo, Native, Call It Spring and Le Chateau for my Daytime Ottawa segment, and received product for my review. [...]

Making Your Every Day Sparkle With La Marca Prosecco


What makes your every day sparkle? It doesn't have to be anything elaborate, if you think about it. For me, it's truly the simple things that make my every day sparkle; things like goodnight kisses from my boys. Laughter with friends and family. A gorgeous, sunshiny day. Summertime. Watching my children sleep. Days when I fall asleep to the sound of the ocean waves. A hug from an old friend.Of course, it's also enjoying a night out on the town, or hosting friends for dinner. What makes these occasions even more special is enjoying a glass or two of La Marca Prosecco. La Marca Prosecco has been the drink of summer for my friends and I. Whether mixing it with orange juice, or drinking it plain, it's always a delicious addition to any occasion, and such a great way to celebrate big and little moments. It just adds that extra sparkle, don't you think?I'm go happy to be a La Marca Prosecco Brand Ambassador because not only am I able to celebrate the every day moments in my life with La Marca Prosecco, I'm also able to share this happiness with my friends.I was able to treat my mom and sister to a day at the spa (thank you, The Ten Spot, and La Marca Prosecco, for the pampering and pedicures!) while we sipped La Marca Prosecco.I love that I introduced my friends to La Marca Prosecco, and I get so excited every time they tell me they picked up a few bottles at the LCBO because they love it so much now. Not only is it absolutely delicious, it's also really affordable, at under $20 a bottle. (That's reason enough to celebrate alone!).What makes your every day sparkle?Disclaimer: I am a La Marca Prosecco Band Ambassdor and I receive special perks and compensation as part of my partnership with La Marca Prosecco.[...]

Time To Netflix And Snuggle This Fall


Now that fall is almost here, I've starting to once again enjoy evenings at home cuddled up on my couch with a warm blanket, watching Netflix, after dinner and a bike ride. As much as I love shop for gorgeous boots and sweaters, sip a warm latte, take in the beautiful fall sights and colours, and indulge in a favourite Netflix show... or two.

Oftentimes, we watch Netflix together as a family; my boys usually select the movie we'll be watching, but it's always something we all want to see, like Rogue One.

Sometimes, though, it's nice to sneak in some solo Netflix time, so my husband and I can catch up on our favourite shows. (It's always better watching something you love together, like Breaking Bad. I`m still not over the brilliance of that show!).

Did you know that sneaking in some Netflix is basically the new bingeing? In fact, over half of Canadian moms admit to sneaking in TV me-time while juggling a busy schedule, with some even hiding from their kids for a moment of peace. (I get you, moms!). I work full-time, have two active boys in grade 7 and 4, and sometimes, I need a little down time, too.

According to a recent Netflix survey, moms and dads are feeling less stressed and more refreshed and 16% say it makes them feel like a better parent by sneaking in me-time.

What shows are you looking forward to watching this fall? I can tell you my entire family is so excited for Season Two of Stranger Things. We really loved the first season, and we plan on spending Halloween huddled around the television (with all the yummiest Halloween snacks) to watch Season Two. I`m not sure how many episodes we`ll make it through, but hopefully quite a few... just enough to get spooked on Halloween. If you haven't watched Stranger Things yet, I totally think you should, because guaranteed you'll love it. And if you watch it now, you'll be ready for the second season in a few weeks.

What are you sneaking in on Netflix?

Disclaimer: I'm part of the Netflix Stream Team. As part of my affiliation with Netflix, I receive special perks. All views and opinions are my own.

Back To School In Style With Sport Chek and Canadian Tire


Summer is my favourite season–I love hot, sunny vacation days, hours spent around and in the pool, bike rides with my children, BBQ's with friends and family, and outdoor concerts and patio nights. It doesn't get much better than that. Somehow, we're just days away from school starting again, even though it seems like yesterday I was celebrating my children's last day of school. Although I'm a summer girl at heart,  I still love fall, and back-to-school. It's definitely time to get everyone into a regular routine again.One of my favourite things about back-to-school is the shopping, of course; and even though it's not me heading back to class (I wish it was, sometimes) I still love getting my boys ready. This year, my oldest son is starting middle school–grade 7–and my youngest son, grade 4. To make everything go as smooth as possible, and to help alleviate the stress that sometimes comes with the start of a new school year, I partnered with two of my favourite stores: Sport Chek and Canadian Tire, for all our back-to-school needs. From clothes to shoes, to storage containers and furniture, Sport Chek and Canadian Tire truly have it all. Sport Chek is my go-to store for all athletic gear and clothes, and my boys received the perfect items to start the school year off right: cool running shoes from Vans and Under Armour, comfortable and stylish pants and shirts from Adidas, and backpacks large enough to hold everything my children need for the year. Some new sweaters from Adidas and jackets from North Face completed their back-to-school package, and now they are so ready to start school looking stylish.To help get our home organized, we received a new CANVAS Clara Desk and CANVAS Blair Office Chair from Canadian Tire for my youngest son's room. He is so excited to start doing his homework in his room now! (The desk is lovely and large enough for a computer, and the chair is so comfortable I often find myself bringing my laptop to his room to get my work done, too). Canadian Tire is the perfect place to stock up on storage containers, as well; for the house, and for the children's lunch boxes. (The Rubbermaid Sandwich Lunch Box Set is perfect for kids and great for adults to bring to work, too!). I'm a big fan of shopping at stores that make the experience easy for me and my children, and Canadian Tire and Sport Chek never disappoint; from excellent service to having all the necessary items I need for my children and for my home, it's always a pleasure (and so simple!) to shop these stores, especially for the start of a new school year. Thank you so much, Canadian Tire and Sport Chek, for making the transition so easy and fun. Here's a wonderful school year, moms and dads! Disclaimer: I received products as compensation for this post from Spork Chek and Canadian Tire. All views and opinions are my own. [...]

Find Your Bliss At The Iconic St. Regis Bal Harbour


When travelling, I take full advantage of being on vacation mode. This means where I stay is as important as where I go. Splurging on accommodations is something to consider when you're travelling to south Florida–especially in Miami–because there are so many fabulous hotels that will make you feel like you're a million miles from home. Just a short drive from downtown Miami you'll find the exclusive and luxurious village of Bal Harbour, home to the iconic St. Regis hotel—recently named the best hotel in south Florida. There are not many St. Regis hotels in the world (50, to be exact) yet each one offers the same incredible service in a luxurious setting where you can truly unwind and feel a bit like royalty. You'll even receive a glass of champagne upon check-in.The St. Regis Bal Harbour, recently awarded the coveted Forbes Five-star and AAA Five Diamond award, is an oceanfront haven of elegance, and the place to go for people with impeccable taste for the good life–good food, service, views, and accommodations. Where else can can you find a hotel that has world-class dining, 24-hour butler service, an incredible full-service spa, and two infinity pools overlooking the Atlantic ocean? Even the elevators are luxurious here: instead of pressing a button, simply swipe your key on the computer screen by the elevators and you're told which one to get into.Although this hotel attracts an affluent crowd from around the world, anyone can stay here. It is the perfect hotel for couples looking for a very romantic getaway, and it's equally perfect for families travelling with children. Here is why your visit to south Florida should include a stay at St. Regis Bal Harbour:The Pools: The hotel has two gorgeous infinity pools overlooking the Atlantic ocean; one for families and children, near the beach, and a tranquility pool for adults only–perfect after you've dropped your children off at the St. Regis Children's Club. The service by the pool is amazing. I was offered ice water and sunscreen as soon as I sat down.You can rent a cabana or an oceanfront day villa, which comes complete with a daybed, bathroom with shower, marble floors, television, a wet bar, fridge, air conditioning, and private loungers and dining table, all with ocean views.The Remede Spa: The 14, 000 square-foot Remede Spa is stunning (t's so easy to fall in love with the Yabu Pushelberg-designed interior) but the service is what's best.I recommend indulging in a luxurious one-hour massage. It was one of the best I've ever had and just what I needed to recharge my batteries. You can also enjoy services in the couples treatment room, refresh yourself in the luxury soaking tub for two, and cool off with a private rain shower. There are 11 treatment rooms, a Vichy shower room, saunas, and steam rooms. If you're feeling up to it, check out the St. Regis Athletic Club. (The only exercise I do on vacation is swimming in the ocean and pools).The rooms: The large oceanfront guest rooms are breathtaking; the entrance, hallway and bathrooms are all marble, and the huge walk-in closet with floor-to-ceiling mirrors will make you want to move in.My favourite part of these luxurious rooms is the large balcony with ocean views. The couches on the balcony are so comfortable you'll want to fall asleep under the stars, with nothing but the sound of the ocean lulling you to sleep. Pure paradise. Again, it's the service that really stands out[...]

Choose Your Own Adventure With Netflix


It’s already mid-July, and summer is flying by. As usual, summer is a busy time for us, with camp, activities, and enjoying the great outdoors every day. My boys spend have spent most of their summer days swimming, which is wonderful. However, we’ve also had quite a few rainy days this month, and that calls for indoor activities. While we do limit our TV watching in the summer months, there is always something on Netflix I know my boys will love, and it’s our go-to for days and nights where we want to just chill and relax.

My youngest is a pro at navigating through Netflix—and oftentimes he’s the one selecting what we’ll be watching, whether it’s a TV series, movie, or documentary. (And we're never disappointed!).

Something cool and new Netflix has come out with is Interactive Storytelling. Remember the Choose Your Own Adventurebooks we read when we were kids? Well, Netflix has come up with a similar concept, allowing children to be in complete creative control of what their characters end up doing—and saying—by giving them the ability to choose from multiple paths for their characters to play out on screen. Isn’t that so neat?

Because of the many different endings and “choice” points, kids are able to watch the same title over and over again without hearing or seeing the same exact story. The kids get to choose their own adventure. They can do this for Puss In Book: Trapped in an Epic Tale, and Buddy Thunderstruck: The Maybe Pile. (And coming up next year, they can look forward to doing this with Stretch Armstrong: The Breakout).

Netflix really did their research here, and the feedback  has been so positive—both from a kids’ perspective, and from parents, too.

Hey—we all need some downtime, even in the summertime. And there is no better way to relax than catching up with your favourite characters on Netflix.

Disclaimer: As part of the Netflix Stream Team, I receive special perks. All views and opinions are my own.