Friday, June 29, 2018

Friday Favourites--- Road Trip Tips with kids

Yay for Friday and for school ending!!! My little one has one more day but guess who finished the third grade yesterday!? She's grown soo much in a year, huh?

Today, we say goodbye to our montessori also. I cried at the last parent teacher interview at the school. I'll be a total hot mess this afternoon. 

Since we are going on a little long road trip with our kiddos, I thought we'd talk road trip tips and tricks. I share mine and then you give me your best ones in return!

A's first road trip-- she was 10 months!

1- Last year, on the advice of a friend, we left really early for a road trip with the kids... I mean I'm talking 4:30 sort of early. I went to bed before everyone and we always pack our car the night before.  We scooped the kids out of bed with their pjs on and packed them into the car. They were able to sleep a couple hours and we were able to get a good head start and the entire day wasn't wasted driving. I usually change them when we stop for gas.

2- We usually pack breakfast and have it in the car. Just that much more healthy and then I get to use some of my stuff from the fridge :-)... oh and cheaper. Another friend also told me this tip of packing a picnic lunch too and stopping off somewhere... that way the kids can stretch their legs for a bit instead of just stopping at a rest stop. Last year, we were able to stop in the little town of saratoga and enjoy a walk and some time in a park.

3- Have enough snacks and drinks but let them not drink too much! Also, I try to give them treats but watch the sugar. No one needs to see my five year old sugar crash. 

4- Screen time is your friend but my kids have to take some breaks. I download a couple movies on Netflix. We also have this portable DVD player which comes in handy.

5- Then they can play games and do some reading. Road trip bingo is a fun one. This year, I also plan to do times tables with them. I'm the world's most fun mom, I know!

6- This is obvious but I keep a garbage bag in the car so we can toss all the trash. I empty it in rest stops when I can so that clean up after isn't too bad. 

7- For the adults, I borrow a few audio books from the library and download some podcasts. That keeps us entertained!

8- We use this time to chat with our kids as well. We talk about the trip and try to create excitement but also set expectations! 

I used to dread road trips when the kids were younger. Now that they are growing up, they've become fun family adventures that I will cherish for the rest of our lives.

What are your favourite tips/tricks for road trips?

Linking up with
Caroline and April for Five on Friday! (though it's a little more than five)
and Andrea, Erika and Narci for Favourites on Friday

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

What's Up Wednesday, June 2018

Yay for June and summer.... so much fun and so, so busy!

What we're eating this week?
Monday: ground turkey with zoodles
Tuesday: chicken burgers with cabbage
Wednesday: leftovers
Thursday: thai tofu salad most likely.
Friday: the end of the school year warrants some takeout or a meal out no?
We are still trying to keep things low carb and low sugar

But.... we had such pretty treats around this weekend, I did take a couple bites here and there ;-)

What I'm reminiscing about
The very first time A went to the hair salon

What I'm loving
That this little one has completed ALL the readers at her Montessori

What we've been up to…
Soccer, swimming and lacrosse.... and year end gifts! I've done this for many years now and the teachers really love it.

What I'm dreading…
I'm hoping our roadtrip to NYC won't be rife with traffic!

What I'm working on
Packing, packing and more packing. Finishing off the school year! Getting some property stuff together.

What I'm excited about…
Did anyone say 9 days in GREECE?

What I'm watching/reading…
Jane the Virgin LOL. 
Lots of reading in the works but for right now it's Forever Summer by Jamie Brenner.

What I'm listening to..
My kids... they crack me up most days... and Google Play

What I'm wearing…
Summer dresses! Yayyyy....

What I'm doing this weekend…
Dinner on Friday and then very bright and early on Saturday, we head to NYC-- I'm hoping VERY bright and early. Birthday BBQ in NYC on Saturday and on Sunday we hang out with family and get ourselves organised before we head to beautiful Greece!!

What I'm looking forward to next month..
No school and a few busy but lazy summer days!!

What else is new?
For the girl who used to kill Lucky Bamboo, my herb garden is yielding lots of yummy goodness!

Happy hump day! 

 Linking up withMel, Shay and Shaeffer

Monday, June 25, 2018

Spicy Tuna Poke

We have been obsessed with tuna poke recently. This delicious spicy tuna poke is such an easy meal to prepare in those lazy summer days. We've made this recipe three times in the last month! 


1 pound sushi grade ahi tuna 
1/4 cup of mayonnaise
1-2 tablespoons of Sriracha  or other (optional)
(instead of these I used a habanero flavoured aioli)
1 inch ginger finely grated
2 cloves of garlic, finely grated
1 small shallot finely chopped
1 avocado chopped coursely
1/4 cup cilantro
1-2 green onions finely diced
1 tablespoon of sesame seeds to garnish (optional)


1- Cut tuna into 1 to 1/2 inch cubes and set aside

2- Mix the mayonnaise, sriracha, shallots, ginger, garlic and shallots together.

3- Pour this mixture over the tuna and gently fold the avocado and green onions to combine.

4- Sprinkle sesame seeds over top

5- Serve within 30 minutes of combining. 

You can serve this as an appetizer to four people. You can also add rice or a spring salad to make it a delicious main. 

I can't stop raving about this poke. The flavours are bold and buttery at the same time! It's also keto and (somewhat) paleo friendly. 

Happy Monday, friends!

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Summer Fun List 2018

Happy Summer Solstice! Here's our plan for summer fun for 2018.

Nice and simple, easy summer fun! I also have a few things on my summer to do list though they are not nearly as fun:

1- Take some apple classes. Do you know that Apple offers free classes at their stores? I want to try a couple to improve my skillz'

2- Get the girls memory boxes in order. I bought some pretty file boxes with file folders for each girl. A file folder for every year of their life where I can save special things like report cards, birthday invites, some artwork, tests etc.

3- Reincorporate our business.... Every year we need to do it and it's such a pain!! And every year I vow to be better organised with it... 

4- Try Youtube or maybe the sweat app for workouts. I feel like I need to switch it up a bit and I can't make it to the gym as often in the summer with my kids at home. 

And finally, let's keep in real, friends!!

Yep, I've said a couple of these for sure!

Happy summer, friends!

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Kind words cost nothing

There is this cashier in one of the super markets I go to. She is always so nice to me and my kids. She takes time to chat with them, call them beautiful and smart and engage them in conversation and a little Q& A. She is always complimentary to me as well. Obviously, whenever she is there, we go to her lane. She always leave me and my girls feeling a little happier and very special when we leave her lane.... and she does it to everyone! 

Just like that, whenever I go to A's montessori class, for the past four years it seems like they are always so happy to see us. I feel like A is their favourite kid, and then I see them greeting other kids LOL. The smiles and the "good mornings" and the "have a great day" go a long way. 

Image result for kind words quotes

How often is your day made better with someone just saying a quick good morning and offering up a smile instead of looking down or away when you pass them? How often when someone pays you a quick compliment do you feel just that little bit happier? Even when people just comment on the weather and tell me enjoy the sunshine or stay warm when it's cold, it brings a smile to my face. 

In this uncertain world with so much wrong, it's so easy to do just a little right.  You never, ever know what impact your words could have on someone. What little words do you and yours say to make the world just that little bit happier? 

Happy Wednesday, friends. Your reading my words and all your kind comments mean so much to me... see what I did there? ;-)

Image result for kind words quotes

Monday, June 18, 2018

Dance Recital Weekend

Hello and happy Monday, lovelies! Here are just a few pictures from our very hectic but oh so lovely, dance recital weekend!

First off can we take a moment to capture the beauty of their buns-- thanks to these awesome bun makers that are now available. My kids' buns were way more scraggly before these were on the scene.

And here we are with A getting on stage for dance recital #1. She is second from the right. Let's just say it was a hot, fun, cute mess! 

Right before recital #2. There were THREE recitals, two on Saturday (each four hours long) and one on Sunday. Let's just say we didn't stay for the whole thing. Actually, A didn't even stay for C's show. The parent who didn't go picked her up and brought her home. 

My sweet C danced her little heart out in a wonderful performance! 

Girlfriend gave it her all, that's for sure!

Both girls did jazz this year!

C's group on stage!

And we're done--- and so happy for the few hours remaining in our Sunday.

The verdict is still out on what's happening with dance next year as we have a few other activities in the works but let's see!

So proud of you my girls for getting up on that stage and dancing your little hearts out! The year's work paid off!

Have a wonderful day and week, friends!

Linking up with the lovely Biana for Weekending!

Friday, June 15, 2018

Our kindergarten grad

Yesterday was such a special day for our little family- our baby (even at five she is my baby) graduated from her Montessori class. We have been at this school for FIVE years, A for four of those five years and we have so many good things to say about the Montessori method, her wonderful teachers and this amazing school. 

Before I show you a few pics of the graduating class, let's take a look back at the cuteness from her first day of Montessori in the toddler program. 

Too funny that I chose a RL dress for both her first and last day of class ;-)
So sweet, I might get a cavity XOXO

And now she is a 'big kid' in the program. Some of the little ones also left the program but those in the back row are the graduates.

The most wonderful, hard working Mrs. Irwin! Our family will miss perhaps the best teacher we have ever encountered. A has grown and flourished under her care. She calls Mrs. Irwin mama and me Mrs. Irwin sometimes. 

She loved her little bouquet that we got her!

We took the graduates for a little lunch at McD after. They loved their special treat.

Onward and upward, sweet girl! You have exceeded our expectations with your learning and growing this year and we can't wait to see what the future holds for you! Bring it on, grade 1.

Linking up with

Andrea, Erika and Narci for Favourites on Friday because if this day isn't a favourite, I don't know what is!

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

How We---Wednesday- Plan Summer Vacations

Happy Wednesday, friends! Here's hoping the sunshine is out, wherever you are...

Today on How we.. Wednesdays with Erica and Shay, it's all about the summer vacations. With school out in T-minus 2 weeks and 3 days (can you tell I'm excited?), vacays are definitely on our mind. Here's how the summer vacations are planned around here-

(Sidenote, I totally interpreted summer vacays as time off from school, not travelling for an actual vacation).

1- First off, we see what family commitments we have that we might have to travel for-- like last year's cousin's alpaca wedding, or this year's parents' anniversary prayer. Usually it involves some kind of road trip/airline travel so we organise that as well.

2- Then we try to plan our big trip. For the past few years, we've done one big trip a summer. We've done a couple Disney cruises, Napa, NYC etc. We usually do it around the middle of August around our wedding anniversary. This year, it's Greece but because of the weather, not around our anniversary!

3- Sometimes we've done it with this kids (and my parents) and a couple times mini getaways without the kids. So then, I check with my parents to make sure it's okay for them  and we can make it work.

4- Of course, I then make D take the time off (all of this is usually around March or April. I also tag on some other dates usually around a long weekend.

5- We also try to do some little trips in the summer. Both day trips and weekends. Like this random one to Rochester and this one to Cleveland.

6- I also sign my kids up for 2-3 camps in the summer. This is our third year in horse back riding camp and Girl's Rock camp. It's nice for the kids to have different summer vacay activities instead of just all time off. Oh and I make them do some prep work for the new school year ahead.. shhhh....

7- And of course, there is tons of pool time, play dates and parks thrown in the mix.

How do you plan your summer vacays?

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