5 Favorites (vol. 8)

Don’t forget to link up with Hallie at Moxie Wife for her 5 Favorites!


1. “Splat Mat”.  I know there’s an actual splat mat you can buy to help protect your floors against messy babies during meals, but we just grabbed one of those computer chair plastic mats at Staples for $24.99.  While it doesn’t prevent all food from reaching the carpet, it protects the majority surrounding Ben.  Seriously this child is a messy diaster when it comes to meals.


2. Quiet time.  The two hours I have alone during afternoon naps is priceless.  I’d give my right arm for this alone time.  Right now I’m listening to my 2 year old wail “Moooommmmeee” from her room as she begs to be let out from naps.  Excuse me while I put her back to bed.  *walks away to put Chloe back to bed*  *comes back 5 minutes later*.  That won’t last long.  Today is just not a good day for Chloe.  Up at 6am, grouchy all morning, refusing a nap…I’m preparing myself for no quiet time today.

3.  Corrie ten Boom.  She is a modern day hero.  I am re-reading her books right now, and if you haven’t had the honour of pouring through these pages of her life (she survived a Holocaust concentration camp) then you must pick it up TODAY!  Ok, if you can’t, then order it from the library or Amazon.  Her courage, strength and forgiveness will blow you away.  In the meantime, until you get the book, check out her website.



4. Opus Dei.  About a year or so ago, I started re-attending Opus Dei Recollections for Women.  Once a month an Opus Dei priest would come to St. Andrew’s Parish and give two talks to a group of women.  The beauty and simplicity of this lay group drew my attention to them.  The fact that we can santify our day and live holy lives through ordinary means, touched me and encouraged me in my vocation.  The monthly talks and reflections given by the priest and an Opus Dei member always leave me feeling refreshed with a new challenge to add to my spiritual life.  Last night I was blessed to even make it in time for confession, which is exactly what I needed.  Already today I feel like I could go again, but am trying very hard to take what I learned from last night and apply it to my life until the next recollection where I will get more food for my soul.


(Source: Founder of Opus Dei – St. Josemaria Escriva)

5. Magic School Bus.  Not a HUGE favorite of mine growing up, by for a cartoon it was highly educational and fun!  I bought the complete series today from Amazon for $26.99 (reg. $99) and can’t wait to introduce my kids to it.  Who knows, maybe it will become part of a homeschool curriculum if we decide to go that route.




5 Favorites (vol. 7) – FOOD

Here are my favorite foods this week!  Don’t forget to link up with Hallie!

1. Muffins.  In general, these are my favorite breakfast foods because 1) they taste good with coffee 2) they are easy to make 3) I can put my kids in their high chairs with a muffin and enjoy my own breakfast!  This recipe is a favorite of mine, but I’ve actually adapted it into something I like better and the kids LOVE it!  This is what I substitute in the recipe:

Instead of:

2 cups whole wheat flour – 3 cups blended oats
1/2 c canola oil – 1/2 coconut oil
2 eggs – 1 banana
1/2 c honey – 1/2 c maple syrup

Try her version and my version.  I’m sure you’ll love both!


2. Coffee!  I am actually not sure how I could function without my coffee in the morning…Because my darling husband bought me a Keurig for my birthday last year, I’ve been working hard to get cheap or free k-cups.  I honestly love these Melitta K-Cups because a) they are free and b) they actually taste good!  I’m not a terribly picky coffee drinker – except I hate it when it’s weak.


($70 worth of k-cups for FREE)

3. Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup.  The noodles aren’t added to this yet, but it’s a delicious, easy and cheap meal.  After we have a roast chicken I just simmer the bones for an hour with salt, pepper and a bay leaf, then add chopped carrots and celery and boil for half an hour.  Mmmm my house smells amazing!


4. Grapes.  Probably one of my most favorite fruits, except when I get a bad bunch.  They are simply so delicious when they are cold, crisp and firm.  I love biting into it and having the juices burst in my mouth.  So.  Good.  Red ones are my favorite.

5. Chocolate.  Seriously anything chocolate will do.  I honestly eat a tiny little bit of chocolate every, single day.

5 Favorites (vol. 6) – Ways to be Frugal This Week!

These are 5 ways we were frugal (so far) this week!

1. Laundry outside.  I just LOVE drying my laundry outside.  The crisp freshness from drying in the summer sun and wind just gives it that extra special feeling.  PLUS it saves us from using electricity with our dryer.  I can’t believe I had this drying before 9am!



2. Homemade bread.  Store bread is about $1.99/loaf, which really isn’t that expensive, but when you think about it, buying a 10kg bag of flour is just under $7 at Costco…That can make a LOT of bread!  Plus homemade bread makes the house smell delicious, and there is nothing quite like spread butter over warm bread and biting into that.  I also like that there are no preservatives and I can choose exactly what I want to put into it.



3. Coupons! Coupons will always help me be frugal.  I’m trying to lower our grocery bill from $450/month to $400/month.  That extra $50 really helps, but I’m sure we can do it (especially if we save a little bit here and there with baking bread).  These items cost me $1 before taxes!  I used coupons for the coffee, Glad bags, shampoo, eye lash curler, and Potato Thins.  I’ll be submitting Potato Thins on Checkout51 to get $2 off.  After purchasing all these items (minus the milk, Oreos and Gerber Treats) I received a $10 gift card which I then proceeded to use to by the milk, Oreos and Gerber Treats 🙂  We were even home from groceries by 9am!



4. Riding our bike.  We haven’t gone a lot of places on our bike, but we’ve managed to get to the park and library!  This helps us save gas, gives us exercise and fresh air, and the kids LOVE IT!



5. Make-up samples!  I love getting make-up samples.  Yesterday I got this mascara in the mail after signing up for this promo.  I can’t wait to try it!


Don’t forget to check out Moxie Wife and her 5 Favorites!

5 Favorites (vol.5)

Better late than never!  Linking up with Moxie Wife!

1. Bibs with sleeves.  Ben is an animal when he eats and these bibs basically save his clothing.  They are too warm to wear right now in the summer, but that’s ok because he can go without clothes while he eats and then we just throw him in the tub to get clean.



2. Lindt Excellence Intense Blackcurrent.  Wow.  And I mean WOW!  By far my favorite so far.  I bought the orange and mint flavour the other day, but I have my doubts it will surpass this one.



3. Munchkin Bottle Drying Rack.  I love this thing and will gift it at baby showers.  I dry everything with this, except bottles!  While it was handy when Chloe was on formula, I use it now for drying sippy cups and tupperware.



4. Freeze Dried Yogurt.  Just discovered this tastey treat the other day.  Ben is being a picky eater, so when I saw these on clearout for $0.79, I bought as many as I could and he loves them!  I actually find them quite delicious too.  Thankfully I found a recipe on Pinterest so I can make my own and save a few dollars.



5.  Sold signs.  Silly, yes, but right now I am so crazy happy that our house sold and that we bought a new house that we LOVE!  Sold signs are my best friends right now.


5 Favorites (vol. 4)

I fell off this band wagon for a bit and now I’m back!  Linking up with Moxie Wife.

1.  Lindt Excellence.  Any flavour really.  When it goes on sale for $2.50 (at Shoppers Drug Mart or Save on Foods), I usually buy a fair amount in order to try new flavours.  Yesterday I bought two bars of this flavour:


  Ryan and I ate the one bar yesterday, and the other appears to have disappeared so I assume he brought it to work with him.

2. Runner’s Complete Guide to Running.  I was ridiculously excited to find and read this.  I’ve been on a running break lately because of some weird stomach pains, but once I get that sorted out, I’ll be running again!  There are so many good tips and tricks in this book that will help beginners and pros alike!  Definitely a great buy 🙂


3. Save-on-Foods.  This store is awesome, especially now that stacking is back and I can get items for free or really, really cheap!  The staff are amazing as well, and we’re starting to get to know them by name!


4. Jane Iredale.  I really can’t say enough good things about this company and their products.  I finished up the circle/delete concealor so decided to try the Active Light Under Eye Concealor.  I ordered it on Monday afternoon, and received it Tuesday afternoon!  The service of the company is stellar!  I’ll let you know how I like this product, but I’m sure I’ll love it like the others.


5. Sunshine.  It’s been raining here for weeks!  We haven’t really had a nice day since end of May/beginning of June and I’m starting to really miss the sun.  Please come back!  I’m sure the farmers have had enough rain!


5 Favorites (vol.3)

1. Starbucks Refreshers are simply delicious.  I’ve tried the vanilla and mocha (mocha is my favorite).  Blend with a little bit of ice and you have your own DIY ‘iced capp’.  This will be wonderful for those hot summer days that are coming.  This week they are 2/$4 at Save-on-Foods and with coupons with be $1/each!  Who gets an iced capp for that ridiculously good price: this girl!



2. New Purse from Smart Set was a must.  After at least 5 years with my tried and true, I decided it was time to part ways.  When I saw exactly what I was looking for at Smart Set for $14.99, I was sold!  So far it’s been perfect for my needs; it fits diapers, wipes, snacks, wallet, lip chap, cell phone and coupons!



3.  White Noise Machine from Conair has been a life saver for naps!  Neither Chloe or Ben hear each other crying and they have been taking great naps!  It has 10 different noise settings, but we prefer the white noise.  I bought mine for $25 at Superstore, but the deal on Amazon is way better!



4. Barefoot Moscato is cheap and delicious.  I like to enjoy a glass every night!  And at $8, I may have stocked up.



5. Free to Be Tank from Lululemon.  I bought the yellow one when it was on clearance and LOVE it!  No bra needed and the back straps are fantastic.  Simply slip this on and I am set for the day no matter what activity I plan on doing.  I’ll take a picture of myself in it when Ben is asleep.


5 Favorites (vol.2)

Well the last two days have been a bit of a nightmare here.  Preparing to put the house up for sale and fighting with Ben to sleep the night and nap during the day, have exhausted me and left me low on energy and enthusiasm.  BUT, I managed to still find 5 favorite things that I am enjoying this week!

1. Simple Face Wipes.  Retail for about $6-$8 depending where you buy them, but I get them FREE with coupons!  I have found that make-up removal face wipes have become a must for me if my face is to stay clean and free of make-up while I get my beauty sleep (haha, who am I kidding.  I do not get any beauty sleep.  If I did, I wouldn’t need make-up!).




2. Kirkland Diaper Wipes.  Decided to try these when they went on a wicked sale: $15 for 900 wipes ($1.66 per package of 100 wipes)!  And I absolutely love them!  They are big, have the proper amount of wetness, non-scented, and wipe them little bums clean without having to scrub!  I will definitely buy more of these in the future.



3. Kirkland Minced Garlic.  This is a fantastic buy because I used minced garlic a lot when making meals.  This bad boy cost us a little over $4, which is ridiculous compared to the tiny little jars at Safeway with about 5 tbsps of product in them for the same price.  Buy it.  You’ll love it.



4. Cloth storage bins.  These are great for keeping the toys from looking messy while we show our house!  I found these at Walmart for $7.97.  Not my ideal price, but definitely worth the price for the amount I can cut down on sorting kids toys to make them look ‘nice’.  Maybe I should have done a before/after picture…



5. Buddy Fruits.  Saw these at Walmart today and of course I hadn’t eaten yet, they sounded healthy and were $0.99.  Ummm, I ate the apple one and it was delicious.  I thought about saving the orange flavoured on for Chloe, but that’s still to be seen.  The only downer is it has 23g of sugar!  My 2 year old would definitely be bouncing off the walls, but it’s natural sugars…so it’s ok, right?