Life lessons to my daughter

27th August 2015


Last week a video from CBC Radio’s WireTap about how to age gracefully was making the rounds. The video contained life advice from people aged 7 to 92. This week I thought I’d share my own life advice (to date!) for my daughter…

    1. Sharing is caring. Play fair. The lessons you learn in kindergarten are valuable ones to keep with you throughout life.
    2. High school may or may not be the best time of your life. If it isn’t the greatest experience, just know that you will find your place and that the popular kids in high school usually end up struggling later on in life.
    3. Cultivate your own style. Booty shorts may be in at some point, but that doesn’t mean you have to wear them (Please don’t. You’ll give your dad a heart attack).
    4. Going to university is an exciting experience (and one we hope you’ll have!), but make sure you take the time to still connect with your parents. Call us, text us, email us (or use whatever technology is available when you are 18). Let us know you are alive. Please.
    5. Never feel pressured to do something that makes you feel uncomfortable.
    6. Dance, dance, dance. There will be a time when you don’t get to do this as much.
    7. I wish I could protect you from this, but sadly we usually all end up dating losers at some point in our lives. Heartbreak does make you stronger and until it passes dance, dance, dance.
    8. You are never too young to start saving. How I wish I had taken the advice of my own parents on this one. I may already be a real estate mogul.
    9. Explore the world near and far. And when you do go off-the-beaten path. The real travel begins there.
    10. Learn another language. This will open doors for you.
    11. Friendship is a two-way relationship. You get out of it what you put in.
    12. Sometimes friendships end and this is ok. Those friends were there for you during a period of your life when you needed them. Your close friends are the ones who will be there for you through thick and thin.
    13. Choose to spend your life with someone who makes you laugh, is kind and has a generous heart.
    14. Do something you love in life. Change your job or career path to something you will enjoy (at least 90% of the time). You’ll spend a lot of the week at work and life is too short to be somewhere you dread.
    15. Be kind to everyone at work, regardless of level. You never know when you’ll need their help.
    16. You are never too old to dream. When you are little, you’ll think anything is possible. As you get older adult responsibilities will come, but always carve out the time to dream. When I was 5, I wanted to be a lawyer during the week and a ballerina on the weekend.
    17. Reading is awesome. Take time out of your day to read – fun things, serious things, romances, mysteries. Whatever you enjoy best.
    18. Have at least 5 go-to recipes that you know by heart. This knowledge will come in handy.
    19. Look after your health by being active. Go for walks, runs, play tennis, soccer…find an activity that makes you smile while working up a sweat. Being active not only benefits your health, but makes you feel good/burns off frustration.

And above all…Be yourself. No matter what (and spend time with your family!)

Coffee with Chloe’s mom – August 19th 2015 edition

19th August 2015

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My creative energy is depleted this week it seems (getting up at 530 am will do this to you), so it is back to the regular old Coffee with Chloe’s mom format of what we’d be talking about over coffee this week 🙂

What’s on my mind this week?
Chloe is now a walking machine! Having a walker in the house is fun, but also kind of scary. We really need to do a better job of child-proofing. Once she picks up speed she’ll be everywhere.

What I’m currently coveting?
I mentioned a few weeks ago that I was coveting a play kitchen for C. Well, we went ahead and bought her this one as a belated 1st birthday gift. She loves it and now I’m wanting to buy the whole Pottery Barn kitchen line for kids. How fun is this pasta kit?

What I’m loving?
The fact that my husband reads these newsletters and picks up on my hints to buy me things like this. I’d also like this handbag if you are looking for ideas 😉

What’s headed to the recycling bin?
Sadly the Rock’n’Play sleeper is saying good-bye. You saved our sanity in the first few months and were a great friend to have when I needed somewhere to put Chloe while I showered. Sadly Chloe is way too big to be in it now. You will be missed.

What I read on the Internet this week that was kind of cool?
So this is why 6 p.m. kind of sucks in the world of parenting.

What Chloe’s eating?
This category should really be renamed ‘what Chloe decides to not throw on the floor at dinnertime’ or ‘what Chloe eats one day and not the next’ 😉 That said she does seem to be loving the pasta I made recently with ground turkey. I sautéed the ground turkey with onions, added some pepper, Mrs. Dash seasoning and threw in some chopped orange peppers/peas. Then added a tomato sauce over top. Once the sauce all came together I mixed in the cooked pasta and grated cheese.

Books, books, books
This week it isn’t a kids book, but a book that I’m reading. I had such high hopes for this book, but it basically is a trainwreck that I can’t stop reading. All I can think is if you hate the Upper East side so much why do you live there?? But I’m determined to get to the end of this book. I’m not a quitter 😉

Chloe’s jam of the week
It appears that we are into Flo Rida these days. Tonight belongs to U by Jeremih (featuring Flo Rida) is an upbeat song to start the day in a good mood/remind mom of their times dancing the night away.

What to do if you happen to be in Toronto this week with kids
The other weekend we finally went to the Children’s Discovery Centre in Liberty Village. Fun times were had by all. There was creativity, imagination and a lot of fun things to do for small ones. C loved the kitchen/grocery store area. Is only open until the end of September as of now, so make sure to check it out if you are able to (and show your support so it stays open post-pilot phase)!

If my husband and I had a night out this week
After a failed weekend brunch attempt with C (someone was not in the mood to be out at a restaurant or in a highchair it seems), I’d honestly just be up for being able to have a bite to eat anywhere with my other half. That said Cluny in Toronto’s distillery district looks pretty cool.

Busy moms need quick solutions
When you are short on time and have no equipment, this workout fits the bill.

Rant of the week
I don’t know if there is a proper name for the little plastic tags stores attach multiple times to kids clothing (for price tags and everything else it seems), but they drive me nuts. They look like this. I hate them because they end up everywhere in the house and you never ever seem to manage to find them all when cutting them off new baby products. Even tonight there was one still in the washcloth we were using for Chloe’s bath.

And just because…
This is too cute.

What’s on your mind this week?

Lemony chicken with veggies

18th August 2015

IMG_2735We are all about trying to get Chloe to eat what we are eating for dinner these days. Here’s a meal idea that uses all of the same things we were having for dinner. Just in a different combination.

Mix shredded chicken breast, cubed boiled potatoes, peas, steamed carrots with a couple of squeezes of lemon, a handful of grated cheese (we use marble cheddar) and a tablespoon of milk. I also add in a couple of turns of cracked pepper.

 

 

Coffee with Chloe’s mom – August 12, 2015

13th August 2015

What a week. Tonight is definitely a night where I’m defrosting some of Chloe’s leftover birthday cake and treating myself to some wine. I need it. Here’s hoping the next couple of days bring happier times. Calls from daycare in the middle of the day suck.

In other news, I’ve decided to take the leap and set myself up with a proper blog. Who knows what direction it will go, but every now and then I have the urge to test my domain purchasing and WordPress set-up skills. One of the things that I’m hoping to do with it is create a list of things to do for new moms in Toronto. A lot of the websites I visit have great resources, but aren’t necessarily geared toward the new mom and babies under the age of two. I’d love to hear if you have any recommendations that I could include!

Random photo of me as a baby follows…

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And now onto this week’s Coffee with Chloe’s mom…

Some are old. Some are new. But I wanted to share some of the things I’ve seen and read recently. I liked all of them for different reasons and each of them made me think in some way.

The new baby taco boxNew parents don’t need more gifts for the baby. What they need is food (for themselves). I didn’t really get this until I became a parent. To the friends that brought my husband and I food when Chloe was born we thank you.

“Digital kidnapping” trendI know this is ironic to share as I am sharing what life is like as a parent, but after seeing a friend post this article I had to share. It is beyond disturbing. Sometimes I really hate technology (and I work in the field) and how it has allowed creeps likes this to exist. Another article about this was written by Fast Company. What do you guys think? While I am careful with what I share, I am wondering if I should be more cautious.

The new face of motherhoodSimilar to the article above, this one looks at how technology has enabled a new generation of moms to share how they parent to the masses. More often than not the photos and content being shared make motherhood look like a breeze. My takeaway after reading this piece was to start to sharing the messy moments of motherhood as well. You aren’t always whipping up gourmet baby food after all 😉

Hands free mama blogThere is a definite technology theme going on here, but this blog serves as a good reminder that it is good to put down your devices and to focus on living in the moment.

The ultimate list of 100 non-toy gift ideas: This is a list I’ve referred to when I want to give a non-toy gift. Lots of great ideas on this list.  A trip to the Toronto Zoo is my go-to gift at the moment.

Is maternity leave a bad idea? I forget if I’ve shared this before, but I thought it was interesting read and maternity leave returns are on my mind. I especially liked Edelman’s maternity buddy program mentioned in the article. We need to see more programs like this.

Canada’s best places to raise kids (2015) Not sure I’d want to live in all of these, but lower cost daycare really appeals to me.

When love feels heavyI love the Coffee + Crumbs collaborative approach to blogging about motherhood.

 

The emotional mom roller coaster

10th August 2015

Hi, hope everyone is doing well. I can’t seem to wrap my head around the fact that it is August already. Seeing back to school ads still make me sad even though it has been a long time since I was headed to the classroom…random photo of me when I was in the 5th grade on a Turkish beach follows.

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This week I’ve been thinking a lot about how motherhood is definitely a bit of an emotional roller coaster. In celebration of my emotions and feelings, I’m sharing all that I felt this past week. As you’ll see it is all over the map, so some things may contradict one another 🙂

Angry
This ad. I’m actually kind of ashamed I own a stroller from this brand after seeing this.

Anxiety
Am still having some anxiety related to my job. With so many new people in the office, it is taking me a bit of time to figure out my place again. I know it will come with time, but there is still some anxiety at the moment as I want to make a good first impression on the people I haven’t worked with before.

Frustration
Let’s face it motherhood can be frustrating at times. There have been definite moments of frustration this week as she’s been teething and not content unless she’s being carried around/entertained. She’s also in a ‘I want daddy’ phase, so this has been a bit rough for me. A perfect segue way to my next feeling…

Guilt
The ‘mom guilt’ is ever-present these days. It never seems to stop. It comes when I drop C off at daycare crying and wonder if she’ll have a good day (9 times out of 10 she does). It happens on the weekend when I feel like I’m never doing enough and should be doing more as I wasn’t around all week. It’s there when I complain to the other half that I need a break.

Happiness
There is a lot to be happy about these days. Seeing your baby take her first real steps on her own is quite something. Although I have to admit when she becomes a full-blown walker I’m going to be very afraid. She is going to be everywhere and faster than she is now.

Hungry
The snacking needs to stop. We need to stop keeping things like Twizzlers and chips in the house. When you don’t eat dinner until late these things are dangerous.

Impatience
Teething sucks. I just want it over with or at least for some more teeth to make an appearance. Just need to feel like we are making progress here. Where are these teeth?

Joy 
The joy in Chloe‘s face when my husband opens the door after work is something else. She squeals in delight and is so excited to see her daddy. It gives me joy too.

Laughter
I stumbled across these motherhood comics the other day and this one in particular made me laugh out loud.

Love
Seeing Chloe at the end of the workday and having her reach up her arms as she wants me to pick her up fills my heart.

Panic
Those of you who know me in real life know I hate flying. As crazy as it may seem I panic even when loved ones are on planes. Am now happy my parents have arrived back home after a couple of long-haul flights this weekend.

Relaxed
I’ve discovered reading again and am enjoying reading at night. For those of you looking for an easy and entertaining read check this book out.

Surprise
I’ve surprised myself over the past couple of weeks as I have actually been able to make my 630 a.m. workouts. If I don’t do it then it’s not happening at the end of the day.

Teary
As mentioned above Chloe is in a ‘I want daddy phase’ when we are both around. I have to admit it is making me kind of sad as she only seems to really want me for the boob.

Want
I want this dress. It looks like it be a good work dress for fall.

A day in the life of a 1 year old

4th August 2015

Hello, I hope everyone is well and having a good start to the week. Definitely looking forward to the fact that there is a long weekend coming up in Ontario. Long weekends in the summer are the best. You get to do things like dine outdoors and have your first taste of ketchup 😉

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While each day is different I thought it would be fun to give you a bit of a day in the life now that I’ve returned to work. I’ve decided to start my ‘day in the life’ the night before as my day really begins then as I need to be super organized in the a.m. Well, my version of super organized…

My day in the life….(results not the same each day!)

7:15 p.m.
Wash and dry hair after Chloe’s bath so I don’t have to do it tomorrow morning. The other half plays with Chloe and gets her ready for bed. Decide what I’m going to wear to work so I’m not running around like a maniac in the am.
7:33 p.m.
Clean up after Chloe’s dinner and put finishing touches on part of our dinner (pasta salad with avocado yoghurt dressing). I kind of feel like this when I clean up her highchair. Think to myself that I really need to call potential cleaning lady tomorrow. I always seem to forget.
7:46 p.m.
Feed Chloe before she goes to sleep. Wonder how we are going to get her to sleep when I stop feeding her. I know I should’ve broken this feeding to sleep habit months ago…She’s also taken to stuffing her fingers in her mouth while feeding. Not fun. September 2nd is my target end date.
8:03 p.m.
She appears to have gone to sleep.
8:08 p.m.
Realize I’ve gotten sidetracked with looking at Facebook on my phone after she falls asleep on me.
8:09 p.m.
Transfer her to the crib and creep out of the room/pray she doesn’t wake-up so I can eat dinner. Have you ever watched the escaping a sleeping baby video?
8:33 p.m.
Eat dinner while watching House Hunters and wish we live in the US where apparently you can buy mansions for 250K.
8:36 p.m.
And she’s up…daddy goes in to give her a cuddle. We have become complete failures at the cry-it-out method.
8:56 p.m.
Husband reappears
9:00 p.m.
Watch Mistresses while listening to a running commentary around how this is the worst TV show ever/how can I watch this?
10:00 p.m.
Go to bed after playing a bit of my ‘geeky’ game. No clue why I’m playing Dominations…
11:36 p.m.
And she’s wailing in her crib…try to get her back to sleep, but give up and bring her into our room. Sometimes you’ve got to pick your battles and sleep/feeling somewhat smart at work wins. When is her sleep going to improve again?
4:43 a.m.
Up again. Feed her back to sleep. Boy she really takes up a lot of room in our bed. She keeps kicking me in the face while sleeping.
5:44 a.m.
Now it is my turn to get up. Sneak out of our room and wonder why I decided that working out at 6:30 a.m. was a good idea. Have to take advantage of the days when hubby can do the morning daycare drop-off/I’m too exhausted to workout when I come home. Choke down some coffee and have a quick wake me up shower.
6:15 a.m.
Friend picks me up
6:30 a.m.
Workout begins. Feeling sluggish today so not the best time.
7:30 a.m. 
Quick shower and change at the studio.
7:50 a.m. 
On the subway. Have a newfound appreciation for the ride to and from work as I get to read books again!
8:15 a.m.
Arrive at work. Husband lets me know daycare drop-off is done sometime around now. Now it is meetings, meetings, meetings. You get the drift 🙂
4:14 p.m.
Leave work a bit later than I hoped. Am trying to leave each day at 4 p.m. as I’d rather get in earlier, so I can leave earlier. Is nice to have some quality time with C in the evening.
4:49 p.m.
Decide to take the bus to daycare instead of walking. A decision I always regret. Arrive at the daycare and spend some time admiring her artwork/hearing about her day.
5:00 p.m.
Playtime and getting her dinner ready. Think that I need to offer her more variety/different foods.
6:00 p.m.
A messy dinner is had and then we head to the bath…glad it is a Friday so we get some relax time tomorrow 🙂 Realize I still forgot to call the cleaning lady today…

Moms need to eat lunch too

3rd August 2015

Eating out with a baby can be tough, especially in Toronto where a lot of people seem to have opinions on the matter (e.g. babies should never ever be seen at restaurants). While I definitely agree that some places are better suited for adults-only, there are times when a mom needs to get out of the house and have a restaurant quality meal with some friends. It is good for the soul.

A couple of tips when dining out with little ones:

■ If you are going with a group, call ahead to see if you can make a reservation. Restaurants appreciate the heads-up when it is a group of moms coming by. Will also give you a chance to ask about highchairs and all the other stuff babies need
■ Try to go pre or post lunch rush as this will mean it is not as crowded.

And now in no particular order here are my top five lunchtime picks to go with babies in tow:

Pizzeria Libretto: (close to Pape subway station)
Pizzeria Libretto holds a special place in my heart as it was the first restaurant I ventured with Chloe. It felt amazing to eat at a place I used to go to before becoming a mom. I think I inhaled the entire pizza I ordered. The one downside here are the steps to get inside. Having done it many times, though, I haven’t found it too challenging with a stroller and the staff are always willing to help.

Combine Eatery: (close to Broadview subway station)
I seem to have had a lot of luck with finding mom-friendly restaurants on the Danforth. They have high-chairs, friendly staff and good food (the Baja fish tacos are the way to go!). When I’ve gone for lunch with friends the staff have been able to help us park our strollers in an area that is out of the way and they have also given us a big table at the back of the restaurant. This is great as it means a bit more privacy for breastfeeding moms.

Uncle Betty’s: (Yonge, north of Eglinton)
Uncle Betty’s is in my eyes the place to go if you have kids. My husband and I went there once before Chloe was born and it was a big mistake. If you aren’t a parent you probably aren’t looking for a restaurant that has kids running all over the place. Once you have kids it is another story. The food is decent, you can be as messy as you want and they are well-equipped to handle a group of moms. For larger mom groups, you can also contact them to see if you can book their downstairs private dining room (minimum food order applies).

Vero Trattoria: (Bayview & Millwood)
This Italian restaurant in Leaside is a bit of a hidden gem for moms. This is one of my picks because it is never too busy at lunchtime (or it hasn’t been when I’m there) and they’ve always been super welcoming.

Bareburger (close to Dundas subway station):
This place is an all-natural, organic and customizable burger place. It’s a great place to go after you’ve visited the hands-on centre for kids at the AGO. Only con is this part of the city is always super busy.

And finally on a completely random and somewhat related side note: To the people who complain about moms and babies taking up room at their local Starbucks, I have the following thing to say. If you are using Starbucks as your personal office space, you don’t have any right to complain about a group of moms taking up room on a weekday morning. We have just as much right to be there.

A to Z of motherhood

21st July 2015

I thought I’d try something a little different this week and do a bit of an A to Z of motherhood for the first year or so. Basically all I know at the moment. It contains some ramblings, lessons learned and some tips. You may or may not find it useful 🙂

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(When it was just us we went on adventurous trips to Iceland and other such places)

My A to Z of motherhood for the first year…

A is for arms
I’ve realized the following – Who needs weights when you are constantly lifting and carrying a little person day and night?

B is for boobs
At this point I think most people in Toronto have seen my boobs. I used to care, but now not so much.

C is for colds
The first time Chloe got a cold felt like the end of the world. I wanted to go to the emergency room immediately. The other half had to talk me down from the level of crazy I was at.

D is for doubt
There were plenty of days this past year where I doubted my ability to be responsible for this little person who was now a part of our family. But then things just click and you realize you are a parent who (most of the time) knows what they are doing.

E is for Ergo
The ergo carrier has been my secret weapon over the past 13 months. We’ve used it for mom/baby workouts,  short walks, in airports, to walk to and from daycare now and much more.

F is for fun
I never realized how fun it would be to have a baby. They don’t really do much the first six months and then all of a sudden they turn into real little people with personalities. There will be lots of photos taken. Even multiple photos of the same things.

G is for Google
All of a sudden I found myself Googling things like ‘is it possible for your nipples to fall off’ and other such crazy things after Chloe was born. I also found myself taking the advice of people in discussion forums who couldn’t spell to save to their lives. The Internet is a dangerous place to be for new moms.

H is for homemade 
Before giving birth I was one of those people who was going to make EVERYTHING my baby ate. Who was I kidding? These packs were developed for a reason.

I is for Instagram
I swore that my Instagram wouldn’t turn into a feed of my baby. It did. I couldn’t help myself.

J is for jealousy
Sometimes I have to admit that I do get jealous of people who can just go out to dinner or drinks on a whim.

K is for kindness
The so-called ‘mommy wars’ that I see online need to stop. As mothers we all just need to be kinder to one another and know that we are all doing the best job that we can do for our families. No more finger pointing.

L is for long days
Someone told me that the first year of motherhood can be summed up with the following quote – sometimes the days feel long, but the year goes by fast. Or something along those lines. So true. There were some days when I was literally counting down the seconds until the husband came home, but then all of a sudden it was her 1st birthday.

M is for mom
There really is no better feeling in the world than being Chloe’s mom. Even in the moments of doubt and bad days. Motherhood is definitely a rollercoaster of ups, downs, highs and lows.

N is for naive
While I knew having a baby was going to change our lives, I have to admit I was pretty naive about this. I had a long to-do list that I was going to take care of on maternity leave (e.g. map out my career plans and take my wedding dress to get cleaned finally). None of this happened.

O is for opinions
Everyone seems to have an opinion when you have a baby. Even random strangers will stop you (usually when you have a screaming baby on your hands) to let you know what you should be doing differently. Ignore and walk away.

P is for poop
Other parents told us that we’d be talking all the time about poop. I didn’t believe them. I was wrong. Chloe’s bowel movements occupy way too much of our daily conversation.

Q is for quiet
I’m realizing that quiet is kind of a thing of the past with a one-year old in the house. She’s always on the move and squealing.

R is for registry
Most of the items I put on my baby registry were things I thought I needed/were cute. I’d recommend that any moms-to-be out there think more practically than I did.

S is for struggle
These days I’m finding that it is a constant struggle to find balance between work, home, friends and taking time for myself.

T is for tears
I’ve cried this year because I’m tired, happy, sad, frustrated, scared. I’ve also had mini tantrums when I can’t go workout. We all have our thing.

U is for underwear
There is nothing sexy or fun about post-birth underwear. It is time to hit up this store in an effort to rethink my undergarments.

V is for vulnerability
I just finished reading my first book since before Chloe was born (a small miracle) and there was a quote that really resonated with me: “…pregnancy and the vulnerabilities of motherhood have offered me yet another window on humanity, yet another channel of understanding.”

W is for wine
You will need it. Trust me.

X is for x-citement
Seeing Chloe hit milestones and do new things is pretty exciting. I’ll always remember the first time she rolled over multiple times in a row. I was not expecting that at the time. Yes, I know cheated on this one, but I needed something for ‘X’.

Y is for you
As a mom, you no longer exist as you used to. I’m Chloe’s mom. I’ve realized over the past 13 months that it is important to still carve out time for you. To be a happy mom, you need a break at times.

Z is for zzzz
To the people that told us to sleep before the baby arrived – you are giving the worst advice ever. You can’t bank sleep. If you ever hear me tell someone this please pinch me. To all the new parents out there, you will sleep again. It will be a different type of sleep, but you will sleep again.

Coffee with Chloe’s mom – July 13, 2015 edition

13th July 2015

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What’s on mom’s mind this week?
I’m kind of hating (in the nicest possible way) people who have family locally to babysit. Where on earth do you find reliable and trustworthy babysitters? We need a night out.

What I’m currently coveting?
This ‘C’ charm. I’ve been wanting this for a while now. Hint, hint other half.

What I’m loving?
Chloe carries this toy around with her like a briefcase. She loves putting everything in the basket and then taking it out. Repeat.

What’s headed to the recycling bin?
It only took us over a year to move on from this product. Since the early days it never worked properly. We’d fight hard to close the lid each time, but for some reason we just kept on using it.  Who know why? Maybe we kept hoping it would miraculously work.

What I read on the Internet this week that was kind of cool
I wish I could give speeches like this. To the point and with a good message.

What Chloe’s eating
One of our favourite homemade pasta sauces is steaming and pureeing a mixed bag of veggies (broccoli, cauliflower and carrots) with some olive oil and a wedge of Laughing Cow cheese. Chloe loves it and I call it her “green” pasta.

Books, books, books
The local children’s bookstore recommended Wild by Emily Hughes to us this week. Love the illustrations in the book and also the message.

Chloe’s jam of the week
Midnight City by M83 is putting a smile on her face and mine. I’m trying to have a morning dance party before we head to daycare/work each day.

What to do if you happen to be in Toronto this week with kids
A whole week’s worth of activities awaits you in a blog post I wrote for Mommy Connections.

If my husband and I had a night out this week
We’d be checking out the Summerlicious menu at Zucca Trattoria.

Busy moms need quick solutions
Now that I’m back at work I need to get better at prepping our meals for the week. Otherwise we are going to be eating at 10 p.m. every night. Any recipes, tips or ideas on how to do this would be most appreciated 🙂

Rant of the week
People, if you see a pregnant woman board the subway during rush hour please offer her your seat. My first day back at work I witnessed a pregnant lady board a crowded train and no one offered her a seat. That is until I asked someone too. This happens way too often.

And just because…
The story behind this video is beautiful and makes me want to do something like this.

8th July 2015

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One of my biggest fears before having a baby was around how I was going to fill my days. I hate being trapped inside the house and was so worried about this that I joined my first Mommy Connections class to meet people when my daughter Chloe was just three weeks old. Best decision I made as it introduced me to activities and new friends! Over the past year Ive come to realize that theres lots to do and see in the city with a baby in tow. I wasnt going to be stuck inside 🙂 

For my first blog post here I thought it would be fun to share a weeks worth of inexpensive/free midtown Toronto activities we have tried out and enjoyed.

Monday 

Start your week off with a walk along the Kay Gardner beltline. Theres an accessible entrance just off Merton street and if you head west it will take you through Forest Hill. Best part is that it is shady! When it wasnt snowing I lived along this trail with Chloe. We walked alone. We walked with friends. Either way we always enjoyed ourselves. Check out the Beltline babies Facebook group as they are always posting walks that people can join.

Tuesday

From May to October, the Davisville village farmers’ market is held at June Rowlands park (Mount Pleasant/Davisville). Grab your picnic blanket and pick up some treats from the market for an afternoon of relaxing and eating. The park also has a great splash pad for little ones, so make sure to bring along the swimsuits and flip flops.

Wednesday

Every Wednesday morning the Leaside library hosts their storytime for babies (birth to 18 months). No registration is required which I love as you never know how your mornings will go! Afterwards check out the new Lit Espresso bar on Bayview for some caffeine and perhaps a treat!

Thursday

The outdoor pool at the North Toronto Memorial Community Centre is finally open for the season. After having a splash or two, head to the park behind the community centre for a play. 

Friday

Another one of our favourite walks this year has been the Moore Park ravine (entrance just off Moore east of Welland Avenue). This walk is also part of the beltline trail, but takes you down to the Evergreen Brick Works. Grab a bite to eat from the cafe there and check out their childrens garden. A very neat version of a playground.

What are your favourite mom/baby friendly things to do in the area?