Does anyone else have a thing for bikini's! (hands up) every year I order 2-3 bikinis for the summer and our annual vegas vacation, but bikini hunting is work. A common question I get asked is; where do you shop for bikinis. I have rounded up some of my summer favourites.
This past winter we decided on our first "family" vacation the three of us, we have done weekend trips to Montreal, Toronto & near Quebec City but we haven't done a big trip on a plane with time restrictions. The thing that saved us was planning ahead, I made sure we had diapers, a change of clothes packed in a carry on and had a thin coat with good walking shoes in the car to change into instead of bringing our winter coats and boots along with us too. Also we booked a direct flight to our destination, with a shuttle waiting for us, to bring us right to the car rental. I made sure to book our flight early in the morning so by the time we were on the plane it was her nap time and for our hotel room we had a separate room for Miss V so that she could not "see" us while she was trying to sleep. She will not sleep if she can see us or the TV.
My top FIVE must haves while traveling are;
Snacks; keeping a toddler distracted with food is so worth it, but not just any snacks. You want to pack snacks that are a little dry and have some salt, like gold fishes or veggie crackers because having there mouth get dry will mean they will want to drink alot of water which helps with keeping there ears from hurting and it allows the pressure to equalize.
Bring there favorite blanket or teddy from home, having a piece of home that reminds them they are okay and by having the smell of home will keep them calm too. Miss V has her favorite "dodo" (blanket) she calls it because she's a Frenchy haha.
A new colouring book with a only a few crayons kept her busy and didn't leave her with tons of options for colours or making a mess with a box of crayons. She was happy to have a something new to use.
Car seat backpack carrier, we debated getting one because we didn't really think it was necessary because we weren't bringing our normal leather car seat with us, we were bring our spare one so we didn't care if something happened to it, but this was an actual life saver! It was so much easier for my husband to put it on his back while trying to carry Miss V or the luggage, it was out of the way and mind you, we over packed so I was afraid we would be over the weight limits, I put some of our stuff in with the car seat bag and they never opened it, never weighted it or asked questions. When traveling with a toddler you get 2 free checked luggage; ie. car seat & stroller so we took advantage.
A few of her favorite toys & a couple beach toys. Having her own little toys from home made it that much easier for her to settle in. She kept busy in the car and in the hotel room while we were getting ready or packing for the day.
Some bunny is happy! I am happy to introduce our newest member to our little family, her name is Holly she is a golden little lion head bunny born on February 17th, 2017. I have been bugging for a bunny for two or more years and iv been occasionally searching which feels like forever. I knew I wanted something fairly small but still child friendly, easy to train and the super cute golden colour. I found a few bunnies I fell in love with but one was sold and the other wasn't the exact colour I wanted so I continued to search. I finally found her and had to have her, I put a deposit on her and waited until I was able to pick her up.
It was such a sad feeling taking her from her family as her parents and sisters were all still there together in the same house. The breeder had four kids herself with one on the way and two dogs so I knew there wasn't going to be an issue with miss V and her loud monkeyness.
The first night miss v was very unsure of Holly but day two she was 100% in love, trying to pet her, wanted to fill up her food bowl and put out more hay for her. When it was bed time it was a crying scene not wanting to leave Holly. If it was possible Holly would be sleeping in the crib with her. I am super excited to watch miss v grow with Holly.
We made it! The hunt is finally over and we have a new suv. If you have read my previous post here you would know this was a long process but we are happy with our decision and cant wait to go on the next road trip. We decided on the Audi Q5 for various reasons; space, options, customer service, price, discounts, and accessories! We got the progressiv line with the navigation option along with winter tires + rims and roof rails for our tulle racks. When we talk customer service we are the type of people who don't like the run around and just want everything conveniently done through email or phone. We initially met our sales men at the Auto show we explained exactly what we wanted, the next morning we went in to Audi for a test drive, to see what was instock and talk pricing. We left without buying as we were not 100% set on the Audi we still had 2 other manufactures we were leaning towards too. We got an email from the salesmen to follow up and we asked him questions ect. Which at the point was Monday and we decided over the weekend we were getting an Audi. We told him in an email the extras we wanted and what we wanted to pay he then called me to say he will talk to his manager and see if he can make it happen and i told if you make it happen call me back we will leave a deposit. He called me back within 15 mins and it was a go; we left a deposit over the phone. Plain and Simple! Our information was then passed onto the finance department we completed the application and provided all documents via email, we received an email back the next day we were approved and everything is set. We were initially told it would be a few weeks as the car was here but at the port waiting for transport to the dealer, getting the car from the port was going to take longer than we hoped, well more so my husband; when he finally makes up his mind he wants it now or even yesterday, he hates waiting and he believes there should be no reason as to why the load of cars shouldn't arrive faster. He actually wanted to cancel the purchase and just buy something instock instead of waiting for exactly what we wanted. (AHH!) but I didn't want cancel and I was fine letting him be mad every day about the situation. But we were offered a loaner car until our car arrived and the Audi manager put an express rush on our suv for it to arrive sooner to the dealer from the port which is great customer service. With a rapid growing technology based lifestlye this is how business should be done. Via email, rush this rush that and it makes us happy customers.
Beep Beep! I love it so far.
An unplanned, spontaneous trip to Toronto was much needed this past friday/weekend. After an emotional couple weeks and a funeral service on thursday, I definitely needed a change of scenery and to just get away to relax. My parents without hesitation took miss v and we made the drive to Toronto. Spending time shopping; summer clothing shopping for me and bike shopping for him, then an amazing dinner with a planned movie date. We some how lost track of time and didn't make it to our movie which was totally fine by me. We will save it for another time, another getaway. We also got something special for miss v for Easter! we cant wait to share. Be sure to check back soon. You will love it too!
These views from the roof of our hotel, the weather and an early morning breakfast date was a perfect ending to our little getaway. The little getaways are the ones where you can actually relax and enjoy, I always find when taking a longer vacation there is alot of planning, hustle and bustle of flights and being places at a certain time then wanting to see and do so much. Where as a spontaneous getaway is way easier, it requires no thought, no planning, you just decide and get up and go do it with booking a hotel while driving! We often do that, we decide last minute and we don't even have a hotel booked, we check while driving then book whatever we like at that moment. You should try it. Remember to be spontaneous and continue to make time for yourself and lover. We all deserve it.
Spontaneous; performed or occurring as a result of a sudden inner impulse or inclination and without premeditation or external stimulus.
Who knew shopping for a new suv was so much work! But we do tend to change our cars often, so I feel we have been on this non stop search for ever. In the past couple years we have changed our truck twice we are on our third, and I lost track of how many vehicles we have had, we are now shopping for suv number two which if I do stop to count this will be vehicle number twelve. When shopping for a new vehicle we first look at the fuel economy because we drive a million km we want to get the most km on one single tank of gas because who likes to fill up on a -30 winter day, I think filling up gas has to be the worst thing ever especially when you drive a diesel! Did you gas drivers know that diesel pumps are scarce, they are hard to find, in one day I went to three gas stations looking for diesel and finally on the fourth stop it was there; it felt like christmas morning! and most stations that do have diesel they don't advertise it, so you are having to pull in hoping to see the yellow pump otherwise your on the road again searching. Also what ever happened to the full service stations! this was amazing and the thing best ever for the cold winter days.
We do love driving diesel because the amount of km you can get per tank but there are only 2 manufacture who are currently making suv's in diesel and we know one has a 3 month wait as you have to order it directly from the manufacture and the other is overpriced.
The second thing we look at is cargo space, there are so many suv's which appear to be large on the outside and you would think would have a large cargo area but then when you actually look at them and measure the space the design is completely flawed.
The third thing we look at is options vs dollars, because we drive so much we don't want to go overboard with all the options that we don't actually need but still want something we will like all while keeping a budget.
Our must haves are; white exterior, panoramic sunroof, heated seats, dual climate, backup camera, auto tailgate. USB ports, 40/20/40 seat folding and back seat venting.
We are currently looking at the BMW X3, Mercedes GLC , Audi Q5, Land Rover Discovery and the Jaguar F-Pace diesel. These five mid size suv's are all within the same price range of $45,000-$54,000 before taxes, all have very similar options within that price range and all have a 10.0/L combined fuel efficiency expect for the diesel its 8.9/L combined. The biggest difference between them is cargo space and financing rates also one major factor is that with the Q5 you can get brown leather rather than black or beige at no extra cost. Since we are in the market for finding a new car it just so happened that there was an Ottawa-Gatineau auto show which defiantly helped us narrow down our options to three! Also did you know that you receive special auto-show discounts! The Mercedes GLC we have eliminated as it has a smaller interior and a 550L cargo space, the trunk is fairly narrow and there are none in stock in the colour we want. I really wanted to love the Mercedes as I'v had 2 in the past and my mom drives one but its not for us. The Land Rover Discovery for it to fit into our must haves, we have to add $ 4750.00 in upgrades which in-comparison to the other suv's is still doable but then there discounts are much less than BMW & Audi and they don't add any accessories at no additional charge. But it also has a 981L cargo area which is a major plus.
We are now down to three suv's; at the top of our list is the Audi Q5 the drive is smooth, the seats are comfy and there customer service has been great, with same day email replies even within 10-15 mins, there standard package comes with everything we want expect a backup camera, which is one of our must haves so we have to get the progressvi model and add the backup camera at $2800, but that also turns the audio into a DVD player and includes navigation, but then if we want that model with the exterior and interior colour we will have to wait a few weeks as its at the Port still. The BMW X3 is a nice and comfortable suv it sits higher than most but there seats are a little flat and there cargo area is 781 L but the only catch to the X3 is that if you want a panoramic sunroof and auto tailgate you need to add a $4,750 package which is a standard option on all other suv's, there customer service is also great and prompt, they also include a 4 year maintenance package with the purchase but then there financing rate is 1.9% when Audi is 0.9%. There are so many decisions and back and forth questions and appointment but stay tuned to see what we have decided on! What would you choose!
Photo via manufacture's website
Ever since I met my husband we always try to have a family dinner at least once a week with my parents and then his parents. The day to see his parents is Sunday and we cottage. When people think cottage, they think its a seasonal place but for them they are lucky enough to live at the cottage 95% of the time on the river which is the added bonus. Lounging is my specialty, so comfy legging, and a sweater are a must . A hat cuz who wants to do there hair on a Sunday..
Just when you thought winter was over, we wake up to tons of snow and a blizzard. Just this past week the snow was melting in the city, there was grass and we had our first day of spring. I never check the weather I go day by day but today no one was expecting snow. We have accumulated 15 cm or 5.9 inches so far and its been snowing all day.
After picking up our monster from daycare she insisted on "boots" "boots" and wanted to play outside. She is definitely like her pappa with loving the snow.
Spring fever is in full force, its that feeling after a winter vacation down south and before actual spring arrives. You start to feel like winter will never end and you never know what to wear since the weather changes day by day now. When you try to go shopping and all you see is spring colours, sandals and bikinis but you just want a simple new sweater because here in cold Canada its still freezing. I found this super simple sweater on vacation and its now my weekend go to, you can dress it up or down and its cute both ways.
I cannot even begin to imagine we have a TWENTY month old! It's amazing and crazy all in the same thought. Time has flown by and we are starting to plan birthday number two with all that i wanted to reminisce about her first birthday and we always love any reason to celebrate especially when your very own turns ONE! For all first time moms or any mom-to-be its the greatest accomplishment and milestone you will entail. You feel a weight lift off your shoulders and you can start to be slightly less paranoid. The first year there are so many thoughts and wonders if your doing something right, is someone going to judge you, trying to develop the best schedule that works for your baby while still trying to have a little time to keep your insanity. Regardless how many books, and blogs you read there is no one single right or wrong way, do it your way, do what you think is best and believe in yourself.
This is how we should all spend our February's on a beach side in paradise where alot of us vacation and where so many live. Have you ever wondered why you live where you live and if you could move anywhere where would it be. I have always dreamed of living on the Florida coast; its a short flight, still drivable from Ontario too, the weather is 90% perfect, the shopping is almost 100% better, the food is amazing and the houses are so dreamy, now to convince my snow loving husband is another story. Possibly a vacation home is on the horizon. Yet the best part is every so many hundred feet are walkways with this amazing view of the beach with some areas busier than others, some with huts or umbrellas and others that are just a blank beachside to make you own with your cooler and blanket. Its a dream!
ps. if you look closely miss v is running into the pictures to bring me my phone, and I of course take it right away and place it on the top of the railing only to realize an hour and a half later at lunch that I don't have my phone, after checking the car and emptying every bag possible still no phone, hubby went back to the parking lot where we first parked and no phone only to finally realize its at the BEACH! and thankfully it was still waiting for me. Now I have to remember to backup my phone.
Happy family day from our family to yours & Presidents day to all our American friends!
Happy Love Day!
This is officially my second valentine's day spent on a beach rather than in the minus temperatures with layers and layers of winter clothes. Not to mention on a private beach that we happened to stumbled upon in-between Coco beach and Orlando it was perfect picture! Slightly to the right of us in the distance was the Disney Cruise boat that is definitely on our to do list with miss v, when she gets little older. I hope your valentine's day is filled with lots of love & flowers!
We made it to the beach for our winter family vacation!
We especially me, I love being in the sunshine state, its been apart of me forever, iv been here too many times I have lost track but the number is quite high being that my grandma used to live here in Florida and we would visit as often as we could throughout the years. But this time was surreal, as the last time I was here I was 20 week pregnant with our now little sassy pants. Eighteen months later she was optimistically scared at first from all the people, the crashing waves and birds but once she had a moment to soak it all in she was loving it. Let's not forget about the sand and say that papa needed a shower before dinner.
Seeing the locals fishing and all the tourist being tourist this is such a cute place to visit and explore the culture.