#NiagaraParks + Tips for easy getaways as a new family of 4

This past weekend we took our first over night trip as a family of four.  We had been in talks about what to do and where to go for a few months.  I was toying with the idea of either an AirBnB near a beachfront or the Niagara Fallsview Waterpark.  I am glad we went with the latter.  The waterpark was not crowded (and we went on two days) and walking around Clifton Hill and checking out The Falls is always entertaining.  Thankfully, the hotel we stayed at had breakfast so we filled up on food (twice for some of us) and didn’t have to worry about preparation or clean up!

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This was totally a kid centric trip, meaning we were back in the hotel room by 8pm.  And even though we were on a “stay-cation” we were still parenting (i.e.: reminding Miss S to eat her veggies or use her walking feet and dealing with baby nap times).  It was by no means easy (I mean travelling in any capacity with kids is a challenge) but it was worth it.

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Within minutes of getting into the hotel room, Miss S and Ellie were playing with each.  Miss S would make a funny noise over and over again and Ellie would laugh at her.  Miss S enjoyed the water way more than I’ve seen in the last year.  And Ellie got to take her first dip in the pool as well.

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Miss S got a few piggy back rides and Ellie got more sling time than usual.  We got a few family selfies and got to eat some Sweet Jesus :)

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Even with all the awesomeness there is some crankiness but everything is a learning opportunity.  If you are looking for some mom hacks to get you through a weekend away with your growing family consider these tips:

  1. A double stroller is must
  2. Adults need to have fun too (and not just cater to the kids)
  3. Always ask a stranger to take pictures of you and your family
  4. Look into hotels that offer continental breakfast or complimentary snack bars

Weekend Activities + Weekly Goals (Part 7)

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We had an awesome weekend.  The weather was superb and the blazing heat was welcomed because we experienced such an overcast and gloomy spring.

Friday we had wings at home and then packed up the car to get ready for the next day.  We spent the better part of the day at the beach we were pleasantly surprised as to how much Miss S enjoyed herself but were perplexed as to why Miss El seemed so confused the entire time we were there.  We later realized it was because we were all wearing sunglasses (and maybe she couldn’t recognize us lol).

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Sunday we were at a birthday party.  Backyard bouncy castle, Pizza with chip toppings and lots of kids of course.

The workweek was actually spent running sooo many errands.  From doing groceries, to gift shopping, to getting last minute stuff for the day at the beach as well as planning for Miss S’ 3rd birthday.

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Also I’d just like to add (so my future self can remember) that even with this list of weekly goals and regular maternity leave tasks, I still accomplish and complete many other to-do items to run and mange the house like: clean the floors, prep dinner, make lunches, do preschool drop off/pick up, general tidying, multiple loads of laundry, pay bills, claim receipts etc etc in any case here is how I did with my goals last week.

  1. Read another chapter of the book I am reading (sadly no, I am struggling to find the right time to read – holding a book while nursing isn’t very comfortable)
  2. Bread this week? Bread this week! (nope, and I realized i can’t commit to this goal until after June)
  3. Take some more everyday photography shots and move photos from SD Card yep, see this post
  4. Get my 10K steps 5/7 days next week & Work out 4/7 times DONE
  5. Take Miss El to the Born to Read library program (weather did not permit, and parking this until the end of June)
  6. Figure out a layout for our 2015 photo album Yep and started
  7. Update family room painting from black on white to white on black
  8. Thursday Meditation
  9. Put away all clean laundry
  10. Order Miss S birthday Cake (we talked to the bakery and got the details and will be happening tomorrow)

Ok 5 out of 10 this past week.  The next couple of days are all about Miss S birthday!

  1. Read a chapter
  2. Take some everyday/creative photography
  3. Get my 10K steps in 5/7 days and workout 4/7 days
  4. Tuesday Self Care: Mediate, Bath and Yoga
  5. Put away clean laundry
  6. Order birthday cake
  7. Finalize day of party plan + list of things to bring
  8. Join Miss S’ Preschool bday party
  9. Find family pictures from last 3 years
  10. Send pix to friends

Have a great week!

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Looking for some motivation?

Yea so am I.  I watched this really great video by Tony Robbins.  He talks about mental plateaus and gives some quick tips on how to get out of them.  In case you don’t watch the super short clip linked above its: Read, Workout, Set Clear Goals and Give to Others.

Sometimes I forget that changing your mindset really changes your focus, sets you in a different direction and can help you make anything happen.

I’ve recently started sharing motivational career/purpose/passion project advice on my linkedin and I was surprised to see that my contacts are actually engaging in the content (a few colleagues from current/previous roles, my MBA thesis advisor etc)

On that note: here is some visual motivation!  All images linked below!

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Via Etsy

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Via Pinterest

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Via Pinterest

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Via Pinterest

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Via Etsy

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Via Pinterest

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Via Pinterest

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Via Etsy

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Via Pinterest

The Good Days

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Something I try and keep at the forefront of my mind is these days will not be here forever. (Especially when it comes to parenting a little).  So I just gotta keep going, forgive myself for the craziness and makes sure my intentions get re-aligned after the less than optimal days.

What do you guys think of the quotes on this print.  

Yogi and Surfer #DreamLife

I want to be a yogi, well not in the truest sense but I want to be able to do sun salutations with ease, perfect my downward dog and do a headstand.

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The benefits of yoga are amazing. So I’ve decided that I want get into some good habits. Two years ago, I was doing my yoga practice 3-4 times a week.  And it was probably the best thing I could’ve done for my mind, body and soul.  Then motherhood came along and I put myself last on the list.  So in an effort to get back into my practice, I’ve started doing sun salutations (at least 4 rounds) 2-3 times a week.  The best thing about doing sun salutations I can do it anywhere any time.  All I need is a little open space and a mat (or a towel).

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Do you do Yoga?  What is your favourite pose?  Any tips on learning to do a head stand? Let me know in the comments below!

I see quiet nights poured over ice and Tanqueray

I dug up this photo from the archive (a visit to Venice Beach at sunset during our 2014 Cali trip) and started to play around with the tint, exposure, temperature and highlight because I wanted to see the pretty colours in the sky (honestly can’t believe I am seeing blue!!)  The colours in these photos help me forget that it snowed on Monday and then again today, seriously winter you had 6 months …time to move on out of here.

Capturing the original photo was no easy task, mainly because it took us about 40 minutes to find a parking spot!  On top of that I had someone walking, skateboarding or rollerblading in my shot every 5 seconds – thankfully I persisted :)

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If you are looking for writing ideas, check here and here.   I know I will be.

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Check out this playlist – I love it!

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Thats it for me, taxes submitted, nail polished changed…. time for bed!