Young Living is Healthy Living

acs_0002

To say we’ve been a sick household this fall/winter is a drastic understatement. And the one that has been getting hit with everything the hardest just happens to be the littlest member of our clan.

From pneumonia, to bronchitis, croup, the flu, dehydration, ear infections and just a good ‘ol cold, he’s been snapping up every single germ big brother is bringing home from kindergarten.

Being not quite 8 months old, besides prescribed antibiotics, there’s not a lot to offer little ones to help combat or curb symptoms of illnesses that are approved for children under the age of two, and to be honest, unless absolutely necessary, I’m not exactly a fan of medicating.

That’s when my lovely friend Lauren approached me about essential oils. I’d heard about them before and their benefits for the entire family, but found all the information and types of oils overwhelming and being frustrated with lack of sleep and busy family life, couldn’t give myself the time to sit down and really educate myself.

With a Young Living starter kit and diffuser on the way to me, Lauren directed me to a super welcoming group of oily mama’s on Facebook called Oilers Unite (if you would like to join the group, please contact me first and we can proceed to set you up!) that were beyond welcoming, and most of all, super helpful.

acs_0003

As soon as our starter kit arrived, we busted it out and got straight to using it. And let me tell you, it was love at first use for our family. The Oilers Unite group was more then amazing with teaching me which oils were safe to use for the boys, and no matter what questions I asked, I was never made to feel clueless, but instead greeted with tons of information and kind answers.

Lavender and copaiba oils quickly became my two favourites, with lavender on bed pillows and being diffused at night for a calm, serene bed time for all of us, and copaiba has been a life saver for Oakley, when on top of all the illnesses he’s been combating, decided it was a great time to have two teeth pop through.

Thieves I’ve fallen in love with for those days that seem to be filled with nothing but baby vomit and snotty noses-it seems to just grab and suck away all the nastiness in the air.

I’m no where close to being an expert, and learn more about oils and their thousands of uses every day-but they have been such a welcome addition to our family and I’m excited to try them all out-one at a time.

If you’re a newbie like me and want to get started on your oily journey with a group of amazing teachers, hop on over to Facebook and check out Oilers Unite or join up with the group here on Instagram.

Stay oily, stay healthy, friends.

Advertisements

Healthy Treats and Eats with Baby Gourmet

d43383b2-0edc-407e-80d1-57ef510e21f5

It’s become a Christmas tradition in our house since Ryker was born, that each Christmas Eve, the kids get a Christmas Eve box.

Inside the box is always a pair of Christmas pyjamas, a new book and a special snack to enjoy.

This year, our go to brand for snacks for our growing boys was Baby Gourmet. Not only do they make a wide range of treats suitable for both our 7 month old and 4 year old, but they’re fun, nutritious, organic, and Canadian owned and operated.

For Ryker, who is four, we chose from their line up of snacks geared toward older children.

Baby Gourmet makes fun squeeze pouches for school aged kids called Slammers-an on the go, easy to pack in school lunch boxes, organic and nutritious, don’t-stop-the-fun treat in delicious flavours like “Awesome” which is bananas, blueberries, strawberries, beets, acai, and amaranth. Or Ryker’s personal favourite, “Chill’n” which is bananas, blueberries, butternut squash, Greek yogurt and yumberry.

We also chose their new Puffies, a crunchy, 100% organic quinoa snack loaded with 1 billion probiotics and available in two different flavours, Strawberry and Beet, which is fruity and has a pleasant, slight sweetness to it, and the more savoury Broccoli and Cheddar, which makes a great mid-afternoon snack.

img_0308

 

For Oakley, who is still rocking a single tooth and is still a newbie to the solid food world, we went a more traditional route.

Infant cereal is a staple in lot of baby’s first diets, whether it’s mixed with other purees, or served on it’s own, and Baby Gourmet offers a wide range of nutritious and delicious varieties that soar well above the competitions generic, boring old, plain rice cereal.

We chose the apple and spinach, but Baby Gourmet also offers banana and raisin, ancient grains, brown rice and oatmeal varieties-with each one being packed full of iron and B vitamins and are easy to digest and have no added sugar or salt.

Baby Gourmet also has one of the best varieties of fruit and veggie based meal pouches that I’ve found on the market-with unique combinations like, Vanilla Banana Berry Risotto,  Hearty Vegetable with Turkey,  Juicy Pear and Garden Greens, and Autumn Pumpkin, Pear and Beef Stew or more textured options for the more adventurous little eater like Chicken Minestrone Soup, Fruity Chicken and Brown Rice or their awesome freeze dried Mushies snacks.

Whichever you choose, you really can’t go wrong with the goodness, nutrition, and amazing deliciousness of Baby Gourmet.

 

Happy Holidays everyone!

 

*This post was sponsored by Baby Gourmet, as I was given product in exchange for my honest opinion.*

 

 

The Perfect Cozy Blanket

img_6771

Who doesn’t love climbing into bed, or cozying up on the couch after a long day with a warm blanket and a good TV show or book? The Blanket Shoppe has the perfect blankets for just that, and they’re completely customizable too!

Based in Toronto and made with yarn crafted in Canada, these quality blankets are soft, warm and durable and the perfect size for your little one.

 

img_6729

 

The Blanket Shoppe offers a huge selection of designs, languages and a choice of 18 colours to mix and match to make your blanket perfect for you. They are also open to any ideas and creative suggestions to work with you on making your blanket exactly what you want it to be.

 

img_6696
From fire trucks to hearts, and everything in between, you’re bound to find and create the perfect blanket for your little at The Blanket Shoppe. Nothing beats warm, snuggly, quality, and personalized Canadian made coziness. They make great gifts too!

How The Zen Sack Changed Bed Time

img_6453

My oldest son was always an amazing night time sleeper. At 11 weeks, he was fed, changed, snuggled and put to bed and would consecutively sleep through the night. (day time naps weren’t quite so successful)

Oakley, at 19 weeks, has slept through the night already on several occasions-but as for making it a daily occurrence, that has yet to happen.

Oakley loves touch, loves to be snuggled and cozy and loves being held. I’m not a personal fan of co-sleeping, as it just doesn’t work for our family, and so I needed a solution.

 

img_6357

I’d seen Nested Bean’s Zen Sack on other blog sites and mama run Instagram accounts-and it peaked my curiosity.

With it’s lightly weighted pad (that cute little chick on the chest) and a plush upper panel, it simulates the pressure of your touch, which for a baby like Oakley, was perfect.

With adjustable shoulder tabs and a two way zipper system, these cozy, soft sleep sacks are functional, warm and come in a variety of super cute prints and colours. And as an extra little tidbit, if you have a babe that enjoys sleeping on their tummy-just simply flip the sack around so that the weight is on their back.

The sack is also available in swaddle form for those tiny one’s who aren’t quite ready to have their arms free.

We now have a much more rested little dude, and mama. 😉

 

img_6358

And lucky for us in the this great country of Canada, Nested Bean now has a site created just for us!

Cozy up over to their great new Canadian site here and enjoy free shipping on orders over $60.00 CDN and be sure to use the code PR-CANADA15 at check out to enjoy 15% off your order!

This post was sponsored by Nested Bean with an exchange of product for my honest opinion.

Back to School Essentials

img_5937.jpg

 

My baby boy is starting kindergarten this fall. Cue the ugly tears. He’s only going to be 3.5 years old since he’s a December baby, but as much as it’s bittersweet watching him grow up so fast, I’m also really excited for him.

He’s a little social butterfly and wicked smart, so I think school is going to be good for him. And I wanted him to look forward to it, and be excited about going-so why not have fun with picking out some fun and cool things that are all his own to take along each day?

 

Mabel’s Labels

We went with the best of the best when it came to choosing labels for all of Ryker’s school things. Mabel’s Labels have been around since 2003 and were created by Canadian mom’s, which makes me love them even more. Not only are they dishwasher and microwave safe, but waterproof and completely customizable. We chose the rocket ships-but you can choose your own here.

 

Go Green Lunch Box

Most schools in our area are big on promoting a litter less lunch, which I think is an awesome idea, as it makes sense not only environmentally, but cost wise as well, when you eliminate constantly having to buy brown paper bags, plastic wrap and Ziplocs. Ryker is a big eater, and as much as we found other bento style, fun lunch boxes, the Go Green was the best choice for us. With each compartment individually sealed, I can throw in some of his favourite Rolling Meadows Dairy Greek Yogurt and not worry about it making his sandwich, or crackers and hummus soggy. Added bonus, it comes with a cute, insulated lunch bag that has a white board for messages, as well as an gel ice pack and stainless steel water bottle. Find them here.

 

Parkland Design and Manufacturing Backpack

I first came across Parkland backpacks at Indigo when Ryker was about 1.5 years old and I was looking for a backpack to use instead of a diaper bag. We bought a camo print one that held up great after two years of being drug around, that he still uses on sleepovers to the grandparents house or day trips. When this space obsessed kid saw the cool rocket ship print one while back to school shopping, we knew it was time for an upgrade. Not too big and not too small, with comfy, padded straps, they’re perfect for starting school.

 

Re-play Snack Containers

This little guys are awesome. They hold a substantial amount of munchies, and you’re able to stack them together to save on space in the knapsack. Made from recycled milk jugs that are BPA, BPS, PVC, lead, melamine,and phthalate free, and available in a variety of fun and bright colours, they’re durable and dishwasher safe. Find them here

 

Hope you all have a safe and happy new school year!

 

 

 

 

Zoocchini Organic Cotton Underwear 

I see London, I see France, I see super cute, organic cotton underpants.

Zoocchini, an awesome brand of children’s products, ranging from hats and backpacks, to wash cloths and underwear-really abide by their motto of being beautifully different. Promoting a love of animals, nature and colour, the company only uses materials that are BPA, phthalate and lead free and strictly work with manufacturers that abide by their same precise standards.

 

img_4976

Made with super soft, organic cotton, these boys boxer shorts are not only incredibly comfortable to wear, but also bright and whimsical-and easily help my 3 year old determine front from back with quirky little friends printed on the bum.

While sized a little generously, the fit is comfortable and loose and they’re easy for independent potty goers to pull on and off, while the elastic still maintains it’s shape.

If you’re looking for quality, fun products for your little one, I encourage you to visit Zoocchini’s official web site to find these adorable boxer shorts, and all the other amazing products they have to offer.

This post was my honest opinion in exchange for product.

Squeasy Gear

IMG_4897

This post is my honest opinion in exchange for product.

 

I hate plastics. I try to avoid them as often as I possibly can (although they seem to control the world), especially when buying products for my boys. So when searching for an easy-to-take-along, non plastic water bottle that wasn’t quite as costly as stainless steel or glass, I was delighted to discover the Squeasy Gear Snacker and Squeasy Gear Sport 100% food grade silicone squeeze bottles.

 

IMG_4896

 

These bottles are seriously the best. Not only are they fun to drink from because you can squeeze and squish them, but they’re also leak free, incredibly easy to clean with no small parts, and can be used for purees, apple sauce and yogurt as well-making them that much more versatile.

 

IMG_4894

 

The Squeasy Snacker is 6 ounces, and I’ve loved using it for quick snacks in the car or for after parkour class or trips to the beach. They’re quick and easy to fill with whichever squeezable snack you choose, and won’t soak up the water from melted ice in a cooler. These will be a staple for snacking while we’re camping this summer.

IMG_4899

The Squeasy Sport is 16 ounces, and we’ve absolutely loved using this one strictly for drinks, especially in the hot summer heat. It’s a must have for us to take along on any day trip as it holds a perfect amount of liquid for my older son, and because it’s fun to drink from really encourages him to drink a lot more water. The added bonus of it being silicone, is that when you do choose to put juice in them, the bottle won’t stain or absorb the smell.

 

Squeasy Gear bottles are now available in Canada at Wal Mart, or online at Squeasy Gear’s official web site.

GoumiKids

IMG_4610

This post was written with my 100% honest opinion in exchange for product.

 

 

Working in the children’s retail industry and in child care, I’ve seen a lot of different children’s clothing brands. Some are certainly cute, but the quality isn’t there. Some of it isn’t exactly my personal style but is functional and well made-and some of it, well, some is just plain ugly and cheap.

When I had my boys, I didn’t realize how much enjoyment I’d get out of dressing them in not only clothing I felt was top quality, but clothes that were cute and functional.

Enter Goumikids!

I was first introduced to Goumikids when I started working at my current job at a local baby boutique. A company started by two mom’s who were friends in high school, both on a mission to find scratch mittens for their wee little babes that would actually stay on, they created their Goumimitt. From there came their booties, hats, preemie mitts, Jamms and ‘Alls.

I fell in love with their super soft, bamboo and organic cotton Jamms for Oakley’s first outfit in the hospital. (pictured on him in photo above).

Not only did this classic style infant gown make those first diaper changes easier, but it was handy to have his teeny new toes kept warm, but also at easy access for when the nurses came around to unfortunately prick his heels for the required newborn screening. The other feature I loved about the Jamms was the built in Goumimitts ; with a high contrast pattern on one side, to help stimulate brain and eye development, and to keep his hands covered and germ free when being held by visiting family.

We’re excited to try the next stage up, in the Goumi ‘Alls-with pant legs that convert to toes-free for plenty of wiggle time, a super cute bum flap to make night time changes easier and the same built in mitts as the gown.

An added bonus to shopping with Goumikids, aside from all the bamboo softness-is they have a line called GoumiGiving-where 100% of the profits accumulated from purchases of that specific print, and 10% of their entire profits go to organizations against human trafficking, such as Solid Ground International.

If you want small, purposeful, organic and superior quality made baby essentials from a company that loves to give back, I strongly urge you to check out Goumikids.

 

IMG_4743

 

What I’m Packing in My Hospital Bag

IMG_4260

With about six weeks or less to go until baby boy number two is due to make his grand entrance-I figured it was about time that maybe I should have my hospital bag packed and ready-cause you never really know when baby will decide to come.

Considering this is my second, I learned the hard way the first time that I way over packed-but also forgot some things that this time I’m definitely going to be toting along.

I’ve broken the list down by two: my essentials for mama, and then what I packed for the baby.

Mama’s Bag

ErgoBaby Natural Curve Nursing Pillow- $94.99 CDN available at Bed Bath and Beyond , Toys R Us or Best Buy

I really liked this pillow due to the firmness of it, which interestingly enough, is a lot of reasons why others don’t. In my experience from working children’s retail, one of the biggest complaints I’ve heard from customers is that they found breastfeeding pillows to either be too bulky, or that it was soft and comfy at first, but eventually their elbows started sinking into it, causing them to have to prop up with additional pillows. The ErgoBaby pillow is smaller then most, making it more compact, plus, it’s designed to keep baby’s head above their belly, which can assist in proper digestion, resulting in a less gassy, happier little babe.

 

 

The Honest Company Organic Body Oil ($12.99 CDN),  Sweet Orange Vanilla Shampoo/Body Wash in Costco size ($19.99 for two pump bottles), and Lavender Mint Organic Lip Balm ($10.99 for three)-available at Well.ca, Chapters/Indigo, Serenity Birth Studio and Buy Buy Baby

I love The Honest Company products. They’re gentle, natural, and lightly scented, and with the hospital being dry and arid, there’s no question what company I’d choose to help keep my lips and skin moisturized during labour and afterwards.  Plus, their shampoo and body wash is gentle enough to use for your first shower after birth-and if requested-for the nurses to use when baby has his first bath.

 

A comfy robe, slipper socks, nursing bra and organic cotton nursing pads of your choosing.

I’d suggest wearing most of this after birth. Birth can be a messy experience, so unless you have a robe or other clothing that you don’t mind ruining with blood and other bodily fluids, stick with the hospital issued stuff until you get a chance to shower and get comfy after labour. Hospitals can range from being over heated, to cold, so you want to be prepared, but also have loose, cozy stuff to wear while bonding with your new little one in the hospital room-and to look cute for the inevitable visitors.

 

Substance by Matter Company Nipple Cream-$13.99 CDN available at well.ca  and Liam and Lauren Baby and extra absorbent, extra long maxi pads-brand of your choosing.

I did not want a lanolin based nipple cream. I know people rave about the moisturizing benefits and the fact that its safe for baby to ingest-but if you look further into it, it’s actually really gross. Lanolin is a wax like substance secreted from the glands of wool bearing animals. Lanolin has to be purified with chemicals for use for human consumption and can legally contain 40 ppm of pesticides, and sheep are often sprayed directly with pesticides to prevent mites and pests. Like I said, it’s just plain gross. Substance Nipple Cream contains no lanolin whatsoever and is made from calendula, marshmallow root, plantain, witch hazel, olive oil and grapeseed oil-right here in Canada.  And well, the maxi pads-I think we all know why we’ll need those after birth.

Baby’s Bag

 

IMG_4263

Packing for baby is a lot more simple.

 

The Honest Company newborn size diapers ($16.99 CDN) and a pack of wipes ($7.99 CDN)-but you can choose whichever brand you’d like.

Most hospitals won’t provide you with diapers and wipes for that fresh little butt, so be sure to make sure to bring your own. I’d suggest a few extra too, as baby will likely urinate frequently and their first poo, meconium, can be pretty messy and sticky.

 

GoumiKids Jamms in Blue Forest Friends Pyjamas-$39.99 CDN available at Well.ca and Baby Land

I chose these for baby’s hospital outfit/coming home outfit not only because the organic cotton/bamboo blend is so unbelievably soft, but also because GoumiKids has integrated scratch mitts right onto the sleeper, as well as a bottom foot pouch, to make those first diaper changes super easy and convenient, and to keep germs off baby’s hands.  This company also sells adorable scratch mittens, booties and tiny little caps made of the same delicious bamboo/organic cotton blend that I definitely recommend you check out.

 

PEPPA Tino Organic Bonding Doll- $24.99 CDN available at Liam and Lauren Baby, well.ca and Smashing Baby

I love these cute little bunnies for newborns and older children (my three year old has decided his brother’s bunny is now his, so we may have to purchase a second). Filled with 100% antibacterial wool, these dolls are designed to help comfort your little one with familiar scents. Mom and Dad or any other caregiver can sleep with it, or some mom’s deposit a few drops of breast milk onto it, and the wool holds the scent, helping to encourage the bonding process, as well as prevent separation anxiety and can be used to help promote independent sleep when baby is ready. They’re non toxic and with no extra fluff, so they’re perfectly safe for snuggles and the occasional chew. They make really great gifts too.

 

Black Herringbone Bamboo Muslin Swaddle Blanket- $17.99 CDN available at Toys R Us, and well.ca

Canadian made and super soft, Lulujo Swaddles are so cuddly and perfect for baby’s first swaddle at the hospital. You generally are provided with a standard hospital blanket for your babe, but I’d also suggest bringing one from home. They can be used as nursing covers, swaddles, or to bundle baby up on that first car ride home. They also come in handy for spit ups.

 

What were your favourite things or must have’s for your hospital bag?

 

Yellow tote bag featured is courtesy of my best friend Amanda and Thirty-One-you can find her at here if you’re interested in purchasing any awesome Thirty-One products.

 

 

 

 

 

4 Must Have Items For Baby

4

This is a sponsored post where I was given product in exchange for my honest opinion.

 

Everyone has certain products they love, that they can’t seem to do without. Whether it be a specific shampoo, a certain foundation or the perfectly worn in hoodie you’ve had since high school-some items really are just must haves. It’s the same when you welcome a new baby into the family. Here is my list of my favourite 4 products that I think should make an appearance in any home with a babe under the age of 1.

 

dockatot_deluxe_9_1-683x1024

The DockATot Deluxe-$296.00 CDN and available at Well.ca , SnuggleBugz and Chapters/Indigo

The DockATot Deluxe is an awesome little tool to have around the house, or on the road with you, as it allows you to “dock” your 8 month and under infant in a safe and comfy spot where they’re able to rest, lounge, lay, cuddle, enjoy tummy time and even have diaper changes. They’re light weight and portable, making them really easy to take with you in your travels, which is what we plan to do come summer when we enjoy family camping trips. Meant for use on safe, stable and low to the ground surfaces, and not to be used in confined spaces such as cribs and bassinets, the DockATot is great if you intend to try co-sleeping, as it gives babe a safe place to sleep and helps prevent caregivers from rolling onto the child, or the child rolling off the bed.

Made with high quality and washable fabrics, I was impressed with the fact that it came with its own little tote bag (a separate travel bag can be purchased) and I’m excited to make use of it once baby boy number two makes his debut.

 

binxy-baby-shopping-cart-hammock-grey-and-aqua-quatrefoil

Binxy Baby Shopping Cart Hammock-$49.95 USD and only available in Canada from Binxy Baby or Amazon Canada

This is a product I’m really excited to use. With this being my second baby, I’m already nervous about taking both boys out grocery shopping, or shopping anywhere, on my own. My 3 year old is very active, and I’m not a huge fan of leaving infants in bucket car seats any longer then the necessary car ride, and I wasn’t really wanting to have to take my stroller shopping each time. Binxy Baby has solved that problem by creating a very user friendly, quick install shopping cart hammock that holds up to 50 lbs, has a built in seat belt, and has the capability of supporting a infant car seat safely as well. Plus, it sits above the cart, still giving you the ability to make full use of all the space below and rolls up to easily stash in your diaper bag or purse. This is going to be a life saver.

 

finn-emma-finn-emma-hat

Finn and Emma Modern and Organic Baby Clothes, Toys and Gifts-range of $$$-available at Amelie and Max, Chapters/Indigo ,Well.ca and WestCoast Kids

High quality kids clothes made from top notch, butter soft organic cotton, Finn and Emma makes dressing your kids easy and fun. With products ranging from infant and toddler PJ’s, crochet rattles, hats, bibs and beautiful wooden play yards and teethers, Finn and Emma turns out beautiful product.

I ordered the hat pictured above, as well as the matching footie pj’s and bandanna bib for the new babe, and would love to order more once he arrives, for both boys.

 

milestone-baby-main

Milestone Baby Cards- $26.96 per set CDN-  available at SnuggleBugz

Being a blogger/Instagram mom, these beautifully illustrated cards will help make photo taking and documenting baby’s achievements easy. With a card for the first few weeks, through to the first birthday, ones for firsts like smiles and steps, and blank ones you’re able to fill in on your own, you won’t miss a single thing. They also give you the option to fill in the dates each moment occurred, or leave it blank if you choose to use for more then one child.  Plus, they come in a great and cute little box, making for easy storage, and the ability to keep them for years to come.

 

What are some of your favourite baby related products? We’d love for you to let us know in the comments below!