Graco® 4Ever™ All-in-1 Convertible Car Seat in Rockweave Review with BuyBuyBaby

Last fall we went through our first big transition with Isla, moving her into her own room. Our biggest concern with this milestone was being able to hear and see her, we (I) wanted to be able to give her the same attentiveness as if she was still in her bassinet beside us. Even though we knew she is safe and content, there was always that uncertainty and constant asking yourself ‘is she okay?’ ‘I should check on her’ ‘Why isn’t she making any sound.’ As parents ,we rely on these fun and trust worthy gadgets called Baby Monitors. We made our way out to buybuy BABY and found the perfect monitor for both girls and you can find out which one and read my full review here.

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buybuy BABY has one of the largest selections around for any and almost all of your parenting and baby needs.

Need a cute outfit for a baby shower gift? They’ve got you.

Need a new change pad? They’ve got you.

Need a walking aid for you toddling toddler? They’ve got you.

Need one of those booger-sucking contraptions? They’ve got you.

Need a new monitor to watch your sweet babe as they sleep? They’ve got you.

Need a new carseat? They’ve got you by the hundreds!

Isla was just shy of 14 months when we decided to transfer her out of her bucket seat and into a ‘big girl’ seat. When we started our search for Isla’s next car seat we looked at every brand out there and after going over all the buckles, cushions, straps and anchors, we landed on the Graco® 4Ever™ All-in-1 Convertible Car Seat in Rockweave  by an overwhelming response and recommendations from readers, friends and family.

Finding a new car seat is never easy, as a parent looking for a new protection device for your tiny human, you want to make sure you do your research. There are so many things to bring in to consideration, here are a few we thought of: Size, if we are looking to have more children in the future can we fit three seats across the back seat or how will it sit when we graduate to forward facing? Expiration Date, car seats can last anywhere from 6-10 years? Investment, car seats can be quite pricey, you really want to make sure your doing your research. Do they need 2 cup holders? Is this colour worth the extra $50? Weight Limit, will it work out over the next year to be able to transfer this car seat over to my youngest? And the list goes on.

When we arrived at buybuy BABY, we sat our Isla in a few handfuls of carseats and from there it was confirmed the Graco® 4Ever™ All-in-1 Convertible Car Seat in Rockweave would be the one that outshined the rest. This seat checked all the boxes and was the perfect fit for our growing little Isla, you should’ve seen her, she looked like she was sitting on a thrown and was loving it! Want to know the best part, if you are a new parent, this seat will last your from infancy, toddlerhood and onto the cusp of preteen years! This means that you will be able to transform your Graco Seat 4 times to fit your child’s safety needs, Rear-Facing, Forward Facing, High Back Booster Seat and Backless Booster Seat (something that not a lot of other convertible seats offer). Incredible!

Graco 4Ever Features:
  • 5-point Simply Safe Adjust™ Harness features a 1-hand, no re-thread harness system
  • 10-position headrest ensures a proper fit
  • Steel-reinforced frame provides strength and durability
  • 10 Year expiration date
  • 2 cup holders (perfect for water bottles and snacks!)
  • EPS energy absorbing foam
  • Easy-to-read level indicator
  • 6-position recline in both the rear-facing and forward-facing modes
  • Washable Cover 3 piece cover
  • Versatile 4-in-1 design: rear-facing, forward-facing, high-back booster, and backless booster

We have had our Graco4Ever Rockweave for about 3 months now and absolutely love it, and so does Isla! The foam inserts are super comfy and great for longer car rides when Isla drifts off, the cup holders have solid bases and are great for snacks, water bottles and small toys. We do a lot of car sharing with my in-laws and we have to switch over car seats often when Grandma watches the girls, luckily the Graco4Ever has one of the easiest installations and doesn’t take a lot of time at all!

At the end of the day, after searching the internet, trying out different seats in store and testing out the Graco for the past 4 months, I couldn’t imagine going with any other seat for Isla. it was such a breeze being able to try literally every car seat out there when we visited buybuy BABY. I know that I am not alone when I say, the Graco4Ever is one of the best convertible carseats out there and we are excited to grow with it over the years to come.

I hope you found this post informative and that it has helped you when choosing your first or next seat for your little one. Leave me comment or any questions about the Graco® 4Ever™ All-in-1 Convertible Car Seat in Rockweave? I’d love to chat!

(PSSSS If you were wondering why Isla was laughing so much, here’s your answer…)

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Love this guy so much!

Holiday Subscribe Guide 2019

 

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It’s no surprise here that the shoppers of today are looking online before they walk into a store. VIP accounts, pre-sale options and subscription boxes have taken us all under their wing and along for the ride to the post office and at home for a fun unboxing. Even though we know what we’ve purchased and tracked the shipment up until the minute it arrives at our door, there is always an element of anticipant, just like Christmas morning when you are opening up a gift that is just for you!

So I’ve got an early Christmas present for you all, a list. Not just any list. A list full of hobbies, sports teams, baking, tea drinking, mountain climbing, DIY’s and even something for your cat. But beware, this list may be a dangerous one that may entice you to purchase one, or 5 of these boxes just for yourself.

Below is a list of FORTY unique subscription boxes that I have carefully hand-‘clicked’ for you and everyone on your list. It’s a long one, so let’s get started!

The Gourmet Baker – The Innocent Baker

Stand back and let the Innocent Baker do the work for you. A subscription box that delivers the full set of non-perishable ingredients right to your door, aiding you to become the 5 star baker you knew you always were! This box is perfect for a quick treat/dessert for special occasions or something fun and stress free to do with your children( Just maybe not the delicate pastries haha)!

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The Market Shopper – Locally Obsessed

A monthly mystery box of specially curated collection of locally made items in the Fraser Valley to Vancouver area. Items included vary from beauty, home decor, accessories, cards, food, crafts and more. What a great way to support the creatives in our city and pour back into our community!

Subscribe Here

The Teacher : Snail Mail Stickers

Looking for a way to keep your toddler busy for 2 hours, a teacher needing more incentives for the classroom or working on your next holiday cards? This is the subscription for you! Snail Mail Stickers sends out a monthly package of unique stickers that are theme related to each month. Perfect gift for a Teacher, Craft Guru or Child, could you imagine the look on your child’s face when they get their own mail every month?!

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The Gentleman : King Portland

This brand was developed by three creatives inspired by the pace and street style of their city, reflected by people creating its totally unique aesthetic. This company has a few different options to choose from, SOLEly sock subscription and up to their King Collection that includes all 12 items offered per quarter. The perfect subscription for a business man on the go or someone who just adds a little extra something nice to their everyday attire.

Subscribe Here

The Vegan Beauty – Petite Vour Beauty Box

Looking for a way to be inspired and nurture mother earth through beauty? Here’s your box! Inspired by a box of petit fours, elegant and assorted French pastries, they adopted the name for their box of little luxuries swapping the letter “V” for vegan. The most convenient and affordable way to discover covetable, clean, and cruelty-free beauty.

https://www.petitvour.com/

The Tea Sipper : Tea Sparrow

Looking to try new teas but don’t know where to start? Know someone who absolutely loves tea and has a dedicated time to sip every day? This is the box for them! They have a large variety ranging from herbal, to fruity, to nutty, and back to black. Tea Sparrow taste dozens of teas each month from around the world, with no affiliation to blenders, and chose the blends that inspire them most to share with you. They take pride in delivering a variety of world-class blends to your door every month!

Subscribe Here

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The Busy Body – TheraPLAY

Have an energetic toddler or little one that is just starting to discover new textures and tastes? The TheraPLAY box is here for you! These toys help develop important sensory motor skills & stimulate the senses. Engage your child in fun, silly sensory play! Items are therapeutic & can be calming or help manage anxiety, they are curated for children with autism/ sensory needs in mind, but suitable for children of all abilities! Each month’s box is carefully curated by a licensed occupational therapist and includes a description card inside.

Subscribe Here

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The Detective – Deadbolt Mystery Society

Looking to add some edge to your Friday night in? Grab a couple friends and a bottle of wine and dive in to your very own at home Escape Room! Complete with clues, edgy story line and guaranteed anticipation and excitement, this box is the perfect for a rainy night or winter evening!

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The World Traveler – Globe In

Have someone who loves to travel the world, is invested in supporting local artisans and filing their home with unique and hand made pieces? GlobeIn helps their customers discover amazing goods in distant lands from the comfort of their home. Through their delightful, useful and vibrant goods, they offer their customers the means to feel well-traveled and culturally experienced. For their artisans in the developing world, they give their business global reach as they connect them with customers to share their extraordinary creations and inspiring stories.

Subscribe Here

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The Creator – Hue Dough

A children’s sensory dough that’s soft + natural + made with essential oils. Let’s change how playdough is used in the family home with this natural art material. #HueDoughYou and add a touch of imagination.

This sensory dough is wonderful for open-ended play + imagination + natural play + fine motor skills  + sensory development. You’ll even find it’s great for adults to destress and unwind. Grab yours HERE.

The Health Nut – Naked Snacks

Need a new salad topping? Post gym snack? On the go mom? Hangry toddler? Well, Naked Snacks has got you covered. With an incredible variety to choose from, you really can find something for everyone in the family. Explore wholesome indulgence! Start enjoying healthy snacking straight to your door. Gifting the Naked Snacks subscription ensures that no one will ever go hungry!

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The Loved Grandparent – Generations Box

A Canadian subscription box sent lovingly for that elder generation in life. Memories of cooking with Grandma, fishing with Grandpa? Whether it’s a Grandparent or a parent or another special Elder in your life, This box is for them, It will let them know that you are remembering those special moments you shared. When you can’t be there and want to show them you care, our boxes will surprise them with your chosen package! What an amazing and personal gift for the loved ones in your life.

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The Canadian Beauty – Canadian Beauty Box

The Canadian Beauty Box combines makeup, beauty products, and lifestyle items all sourced from popular and emerging Canadian companies. This Winter their box is full of products that focus on keeping you hydrated! Each box includes 5-8 full size beauty products like face masks, lip gloss, body scrubs, eye shadow, and more. All boxes have a retail value of $140+ and ships free within Canada!

Use Code : SGCBB for 20% off and FREE shipping Canada wide!

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The Cat Lover – Meow Box

Looking to make sure that your special feline friend has a very Meowy Christmas? Well look no further, this box is jammed packed with treats, toys and other fun items that your cat will love! MeowBox is the original subscription box for cats, shipping fun toys and yummy treats to your doorstep every month, or bi-monthly. Each item is thoughtfully selected or designed to win over the most finicky feline.

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The Independent Girl – Girls Can Crate

Have an independent sassy little soul sista? Looking to encourage core values, confidence and building a leader-like personality in your little girl, I present to you, the GIRLS CAN Crate. Each month you’re daughter will receive a new box focusing on a new confident, problem solving woman who made history! From Marie Curie to Bessie Coleman, Irena Sendler to Florence Nightingale, Patsy Mink to Malala – GIRLS CAN! CRATE inspires girls to BE and DO anything by introducing them to fearless women who made the world better. GIRLS CAN! Let’s make sure they know it!

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The Cyclist – Street Team Cycling

Wether your cycling to work, around the block or delivering for a restaurant, the Street Team has got you covered! This subscription box comes fully equipped with everything you need to keep you going on the road.

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The Curious Child – Lovevery

Their goal is to help every parent feel confident. Their play products are designed by child development experts and distilled to their simplest, purest purpose: to be exactly what children need at each stage. Along with their Play Kits, Play Gym and other items, their most coveted product that grows and develops with your child is their Block Set. Check out their website and the many options they offer in aiding your little one reach their greatest potential!

Subscribe Here

The Fashionista – Frock Box

Looking to spice up your wardrobe or know someone who loves to try new things, likes to keep up with the trends and have a personal stylist to help them with these choices? I bring to you, the Frock Box! A specially curated styling subscription box that takes your measurements, body shape and colour scheme and delivers a package of new and fun items to your door monthly. Take the middle man out and do your try-ons at home and just send back whichever items don’t fit just right, free of charge!

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The Explorer – Hike Wize

From the mountain tops to River banks, the Hike Wize subscription box will prepare you for every exploration  your heart desires. Warm fuzzy socks, energy bars, water bottle and more to keep your energy up and your body comfortable to be equip you in reaching your adventure goal! Four times a year they will send hiking essentials to your doorstep. They hope to not only deliver hiking gear needed for the perfect day hike, but to deliver a little bit of confidence for your next adventures!

Subscribe Here

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The Crafter – Home Made Luxe

CRAFTASTIC is what this box is!! Ever seen those beautiful at home DIY Pinterest projects that everyone seems to be making? Well craft lovers, here is your secret weapon, a subscription box that delivers everything you need to make the most up to date and modern artwork for your home. The best part? it’s all delivered to your door!! You don’t even need to get out of your pajamas!

Subscribe Here

The Crafter (Children’s Edition) – myFUNvelope

Myfunvelope is a Canadian craft subscription box for kids ages 3-9. MyFUNvelope is available in both French AND English. Every month your child will rush to the mailbox to receive their MyFUNvelope. They will discover and have fun with FOUR unique craft projects that follow a fun monthly theme. They will also receive a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) activity/idea for hands on building that is fun and sometime hilarious!

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The Ultimate Fan – Fan Chest

42! 26! 21! HUT! Here’s the ultimate sports fan subscription box coming in hot! The Fan Chest holds an incredible amount of unique and one of a kind items of officially licensed sports gear that is delivered right to your door. This box is such an easy solution for sports fans and is just a click away!

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The Moustache Man – Meraki Box

The Meraki box is a bi-monthly subscription box delivering specially curated items that are relevant to each season, ranging from bath bombs, coffee, mugs, beeswax wraps and market bags! Check out their most recent subscription box that was made just for men; the Movember Box. This is their first subscription box for men and includes everything you need to look and feel your best!

Subscribe Here

[Use code STUMBLINGGRACE15 for 15% off your order of any subscription box!]

The Gainer – Fit Snack

Just finished up at Yoga or sweating it out after your morning work out? Fit Snack is here to help you fill up, regain your energy and chalked full of nutrition and the delicious healthy stuff! Fit Snack was created to offer access to healthy, on-the-go snacks for people looking to live active, happy lifestyles. Each month, the Fit Snack duo curates a nutritionist approved snack box featuring the best brands on the planet, trainer certified workouts, and tips for healthy living, right to your doorstep.

Subscribe Here

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The Builder – Brick Loot

Young or old, LEGO has always been an amazing way to go on adventures and let your imagination let loose! It is also a great quiet activity that someone of any age would love! Brick Loot is the creation of 9 year old Parker Krex (now 15). He has a deep love for LEGO and has accumulated a massive collection. Along with your regular LEGO sets, there are also Brick Loot exclusive sets and additional pieces that are included in your subscription!

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The Great Brit – Great British Tea Break

Enjoy a break from work like a true Brit with a monthly box containing over 10 tea break essentials! Take a well deserved tea break with a classy mug, 8 assorted teabags and a selection of sweet and savoury snacks loved by every Brit. In the United Kingdom we love ‘Elevenses’, the tradition of stopping work for tea and a snack at 11am. This box provides everything you need to raise a mug with us Brits at 11am whatever time zone you are in.

Subscribe Here

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The Glam Squad – Kinder Beauty

Each Kinder Beauty box is packed with $75-$165 worth of carefully-curated, cruelty-free & vegan skincare, makeup, hair-care and/or accessories. You’ll get at least two full-size products in each box, and every month we’ll help you discover new brands to fall in love with that are delivered right to your door! A portion of all sales benefits some of our favourite animal rights and environmental causes.

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The Dog Lover – Woof Packs

Do you have an excited little puppy or an old timer that you’re looking to spoil this holiday? Look no further because Woof Packs has every item you’ll need to put under that tree! They deliver natural treats, fun and engaging toys, delicious chews and cool accessories to your door. Every month, they build your pack around a new and unique theme. You’ll always receive two toys; one plush and one rubber, two all-natural Canadian made treats and either a tasty chew or accessory. (Hopefully your loyal companion doesn’t sniff it out before Santa comes!)

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The Wizard – Geek Gear

Got an HP fanatic in the family? A friend who is all in with Gryffindor or someone tangled up in Gillyweed? This box will definitely blow your mind and make you feel like you’re walking the halls of Hogwarts. GeekGear is a UK Subscription box company based in Central Scotland bringing you an amazing monthly shipment of magic! With the variety of subscriptions we offer, there is something for everyone!

Subscribe Here

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The Coffee Snob – The Roasters Pack

Each issue, we feature three great roasts from three artisan roasters. The independently roasted beans can make a month’s worth of coffee! Free shipping on coffee that has been specifically roasted for your order. Sealed and packaged at the source in our valve bags for the optimal level of freshness.

Subscribe Here

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The Believer – Believers Box

The Believer’s Box is a monthly subscription box for Christian women who believe in giving back.  Each monthly box is designed to strengthen your Christian faith and support those in need. Each box contains Christian-inspired jewelry and accessories, as well as other handmade and handpicked items to celebrate your Christian lifestyle.

Subscribe Here

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The Spicy One – Raw Spice Bar

Their mission is to give you the best possible flavour experience and always at a fair price. By sourcing high quality, whole ingredients they own the entire process, from sourcing, toasting, grinding and blending. They are are able to deliver the freshest, ready to use flavour kits directly to your door!

Subscribe Here

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The Man – Luxury Cigar Club

This subscription service is unlike any other cigar box on the market. Each cigar found in one of our boxes is personally smoked, and hand selected by one of the owners before it ever enters the box. They pride themselves in providing the highest value on the market, and strive to provide the best customer experience possible. Luxury cigars delieverd to your door every month!

Subscribe Here

I had such a blast putting this together for you and really did come across so many gems and boxes that I didn’t even know existed! I really hope that this post helps you out this Holiday Season and instead of spending time pushing your way through busy crowds at the mall I hope you’re able to find something on here, click a few buttons from the comfort of your home and be done all your shopping! And the best part about subscription boxes? It’s the gift that keeps on giving!

Take care,

Cassandra

[PS: If you have a box that I missed or something super unique you think needs to be added on here – let me know!]

The Perfect Shirt From Winter to Spring and All Year Round.

Living on the West Coast you never really know what the weather is going to be like and when you do finally figure it out, it can change in a second! I am constantly looking out for clothing I can layer up when it’s chilly and shed when the day warms up. When I came across the Long Sleeve Peplum top from Pink Blush, it was love at first sight. Something that layered nicely, was comfortable, and best of all, nursing friendly!

On a regular day, I will usually throw on a pair of pants, long sleeve shirt and oversized sweater, so when I received this Peplum top from Pink Blush I was over the moon! It is a great piece that is casual enough to wear with jeans to run errands or I could instantly dress it up for a night on the town by adding a pair of heels!

This top is extremely lightweight, sits nicely on the body and has a adorable flirty twirl with the peplum bottom. Wether you are just looking for a new fun top or a nursing mother, this top is so versatile that it really covers a large range of stages, ages and body types! Wearing this top, there are a few ways you can style it up or dress it down, you can easily pair it with leather leggings and brown boots, jean shorts and a large brimmed hat, ripped jeans and a leather jacket, and even yoga pants and gum boots! (Check out the Tulip Field photos below, I told you so!)

Check out Shop Pink Blush for more items to check off your summer wish list and I’ll leave my wish list below as well for you to take a peek!

Blue Lace Mesh Overlay Maternity Gown

Light Blue Destroyed Fringe Maternity Shorts

Sage Green Crochet Accent Kimono

Brown Soft Wide Brim Fedora

Black Solid Sleeveless Maternity Nursing Tank

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I would love to know some of your favourites you found through their site! Let me know below in the comments and have a great rest of the week!

Take care,

Cassandra

Cadenshae: Maternity + Nursing Activewear for Everyday Mothers

If you are pregnant or a nursing mom you will want to read this post.

When I was pregnant with my first, I didn’t really know much, nor the benefits of having proper and fitted maternity clothing. I spent most of the pregnancy in my regular clothes and only really purchased a couple pairs of pants near the end. Thankfully, I carry smaller in the tummy and used the elastic trick to get the most out of my non-maternity clothing. (Keep reading, I’ll share that secret later!)

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This time around with my second child I decided to really invest and search out which companies offered not only comfortable activewear, as this was a summer pregnancy, but clothing I could also carry on to the fourth trimester for nursing and healing. Activewear for nursing moms is surprisingly really hard to find and anything I did find at big name brand shops weren’t really anywhere close to accessible or comfortable. I came across Cadenshae and was so excited to have found them! Not only did they offer exactly what I was looking for, but the fact that this was a complete line of maternity wear that was so discrete, was amazing! When I tell friends that I am wearing a nursing hoodie, most have been in disbelief until I show them the invisible zippers!

Cadenshae is a company that makes activewear for nursing moms, they are based out of New Zealand and was started by Nikki Croft, a mother of 2 and personal trainer. She searched and searched, much like I did, for clothing that fit her body and her active lifestyle. She couldn’t find anything, so she decided to start her own clothing line, and I am so thankful she did! Read more about the company and their journey as a family here.

Cadenshae Nurshing Activewear Hoodies

Activewear Hoodie

I have been LIVING in my Activewear Hoodie paired with the Classic Full Length Leggings and am so excited to move into the fall and be able to take my two girls on walks to the park and coffee runs! The zips at the top of the hoodie for nursing are hidden within the seam of how the clothing is made itself and is placed perfectly for on the go feeds. There is no need to fuss with extra layers while trying to stay warm on those cooler days!

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Classic Full Length Leggings

The Classic Full Length Leggings that I decided to try out had a full panel for coverage and support while pregnant, but by folding down the panel in half, it also offered extra support as a belly band while in the fourth trimester. This is the same road I went with my first pregnancy of not really paying attention to the Fourth Trimester and how I can best support my body in it’s healing process. The comfort and core strength that this belly band offers is unreal and I am SO happy to have it after this second pregnancy. (Having a toddler around as well as a new born has definitely had it’s challenges with self-care and resting). Having the full length option for these leggings was a must for me as I am usually more on the cooler side and knew this was the perfect pair for me!

This is a company that I am proud to support and tell you all about, it is an amazing brand run by an amazing and real family. My own experience with Cadenshae and Nikki, co-founder of Cadenshae, herself was great. When I was ordering my items I was unsure of sizing and she went out of her way to answer any questions or concerns I had to make sure I was doing it right. For a busy, family owned company, I feel like that’s pretty rare. Especially for just having her own newborn a couple months ago! I am so pleased with the hoodie and leggings and the investment I made with the two items. They are right on par with the current style of activewear, make me feel more energetic and have more mobility and take away stress from nursing in public with how easy and accessible it is in their clothing.

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If you are a pregnant or a nursing mama, my hope for you is that you find the same fit and comfort for yourself. There really is such a difference with being comfortable and confident in such a precious and sensitive time in life. The journey of pregnancy and postpartum can be a tough one but I am so thankful I have Cadenshae to make just a little bit sweeter! 

XOX – Cass

PS – Elastic Trick, take a regular hair elastic loop it through the button hole of your pants and thread it through the other side, fastening it to the button. This will give you about an extra month in your favourite non-maternity pants!

 

Nursing Hoodie + Leggings : Cadenshae 

Photography : IXL Photography

Necklace : Mint + Birch

Shoes : People Footwear

Watch : JORD Watch

Floral Baby Gown : Dwell + Slumber

2 Girls and Their Dolls – American Girl Review

Since Ezra was born, her and her cousin Maisie have been inseparable. At the beginning it was an un-dyeing love that Maisie had for this new little baby girl that was all hers. This love then it grew and grew as Ezra began to crawl, babble and say ‘MAIZEE’ with the biggest smile. Even though there is almost four years difference, they still find ways to play together, laugh and connect on the same crazy level!

We are very fortunate to live so close to Ezra’s cousins and that she is able to see them at the very minimum, once a week. In a sense she is growing up with her cousins more as siblings, the bond they all share is so strong. Ez will go through all of her cousins names, and her aunts and uncles at LEAST 5 times a day, wether we be in the car and she hopes were driving to their house, or just at home sitting on the couch.

Ez is so funny with her eldest cousin Maisie, she will see her and instantly start to vibrate, run up to her and give her the biggest hug while chanting MAISIE! MAISIE! MAISIE! Maisie will run over to Ez, swoop her up in her arms and twirl her. There is such a look of pure joy and love when they see each other, you can’t help but smile along with them.

When I first started working with American Girl, I was thrilled to be able to give Ezra one of their beautiful dolls. Not only did I just find out that I was pregnant and that this would be so fun to gift her a ‘practice’ sibling, but to watch her grow and change and show the same love and care that we pour in to her each day. I then started thinking of that same love that she exudes when Maisie is around and how fun it would be if they each had their own American Girl to play with on their playdates!

I knew that Maisie loved her dolls and barbies and that she would love her Camille Doll and the Garden Party Table and Chairs accessories. She loves fairy gardens and dresses, so this was the prefect fit for her! As for Ezra, I found the Bitty Baby that looked the most like her when she was born, very dark features, a head of hair and in her jammies! Along with Ez, we received the Bitty Better Kit, a doctor kit for her Baby, Ez is so compassionate and caring that this was such a good addition for her, and plus, it came in a ‘purse'(doctors kit), Ez’ favourite thing to carry around right now haha!

When the girls first opened their dolls, they were both shocked, and instantly in awe of these beautiful little girls, all dressed up and all theirs! They could barely keep it together while we unpackaged them for them. (Note to self: Prep and un-package all tags next time I am gifting an item to a toddler!). As they started to play with their new American Girls, I brought out the other items for them and it happened all over again! the OO’s the AHH’s and the ‘I Love It!’ was all over the place. It was a little bit of a rough start, as the girls both received brand new toys at the same time and wanted to play with each others gifts.

They worked it out in the end and played for a couple hours going back and forth and obviously ending the playdate with a dance party!

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Thank you so much again to American Girl Dolls for these gifts for my favourite girls! They will enjoy them for years to come and we are excited for Ezra to have her very own baby doll to take care of in a quick six months!

XOX,

Cass

 

10 Tips to start a Capsule Wardrobe

I’ve been hearing more and more about these ‘capsule wardrobes’ and the challenge to live a minimal lifestyle, and I’m intrigued. I’ve done my ‘research’ and have  compiled a list and pictures of what my capsule will include and the various ways I am going to style it throughout the month!

A Capsule wardrobe consists of 30 or less pieces of clothing, including shoes, accessories etc. But this time around I started with 30 pieces of clothing and then add ons – it’s my first time okay! The biggest thing that really attracted me to trying out my own capsule was the amount of time I waste trying to figure out what I am going to wear every morning and then I always come back to the same old thing.

REASONS TO START A CAPSULE WARDROBE:

  • De-clutter your closet and say goodbye to what doesn’t bring you joy!
  • Minimize the ever-daunting question ‘what should i wear today’
  • Be ready 10x faster

HERE ARE 10 TIPS TO GET STARTED!

1// IT’S NOT HARD : It really is that simple. Make sure you start in a month that would be ‘easier'(where you don’t have 6 weddings to attend!) for you so you do not get discouraged. Remember, it’s only a month, make sure you’ve grabbed your favourites and MUST HAVES and try! Next time I do a capsule wardrobe, I’m going to take the plunge and do the complete 30 piece wardrobe, clothes, shoes, accessories and all.

2// YOU’RE PROBABLY ALREADY DOING IT : Most likely, you already have a list of your favourites tucked away in your mind. If you’re having a lazy day, you have those tights and shirt you like to wear. If you’re going out, you have that little black dress and long dangly necklace you love so much. Lastly, if you’re going to a soccer game you’ve got those nice pair of jeans that make your butt look good and that fitted tee to be game ready! So putting together a 30 piece capsule shouldn’t be too hard!

This grey sweater below is one of my top 5 items – I HAD to include a pic of the back! 

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3// DECLUTTER : Are you (like me) one of those people who have a closet that is BURSTING at the seems and has found it’s way to under your bed, down the hall and in your husband’s dresser? If you have been looking for a way to kind of kick-start a purge, then I would highly suggest a capsule wardrobe!

4// BE SEASONAL : When putting together your capsule, keep in mind the season and the weather. Will it be changing? Will you be needing to layer up at all? Especially if you are branching out and decide to do a 3 month capsule, this is a MUST!

5// KEEP IT NEUTRAL : I chose not to have many prints in my capsule, unless they were black and white. I find patterns and more eccentric prints aren’t that forgiving when trying to pair with the rest of the wardrobe. Maybe next time, if I am feeling more daring, I’ll throw a bright print in! This time I stuck to black, white, grey’s, neutrals and jean.

6// HAVE A BASE : You’ll find as you thread through all the different capsules out there, there is always an underlying base colour. I found the most popular are either BLACK OR NAVY. My capsule had a base of black pieces.

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7// THE 3 PIECE RULE : Can I wear this item with at least 3 other pieces in my capsule. For example, I included my long black tank because I love to wear it with my tights and a hoodie but also wear it with my leather leggings, brown booties and a necklace. TADA – Transformed!

8// FITS YOUR LIFESTYLE : As I started my capsule wardrobe, I began with what do I love as the driving force to start choosing what to include. I love playing with Ez so I checked off items one and two with a long slinky tank and tights combo! Then just go from there!

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9// SWITCH IT OUT : I kind of made this up, but it really helped me along the way when deciding what I was going to include. I made my capsule and had the full intention of sticking to it, but then I was about a week and a half in and there was a shirt I just didn’t see myself wearing. PLUS the Whitecaps were in the playoffs and I had forgotten to put my jersey in – so SWITCH!

10// SPREAD THE LOVE : Why just keep it to yourself? Challenge your family to do just the same! Next season around or even in the midst, try it out. I’ve noticed that a lot of the time when I am dressing Ez, I am constantly looking for my favourites and dressing her in the same 10 outfits every week. (yes I realize there’s only 7 days in a week, but, #toddlerlife). Try it out, test it and see if it’s a good fit for your family, it may be a fun ‘challenge’ to see who can do it and stick to it!

BONUS : MY TOP 5 PIECES TO START YOUR CAPSULE

  1. Black maxi dress
  2. Light jean jacket
  3. White runners
  4. Black ripped jeans
  5. Grey slouchy t shirt

BONUS #2 : TIPS FOR CHILDS CAPSULE WARDROBE

  • Stick to solid colours / black&white prints
  • 5 piece ‘Rule’ – choose 5 of each (pants&tights / shirts / long sleeve / dress / shorts, depending on season)
  • Don’t include accessories/under garments/outerwear
  • By starting a capsule for your children you are also limiting their options and therefor encouraging and making it easier for them to start dressing themselves!

In review: At the beginning of the ‘challenge’ I was feeling a bit intimidated and felt like I wasn’t going to be able to do it, but then I got to about number 23 for pieces of clothing and I was done. There was no more pieces I would LOVE to include, so I threw in a few extra tanks and a pair of SWEATS! Lol Something that also made it easier for me to stick to the capsule was separating it from my own closet. I went out and purchased a clothing rack from IKEA ($16!) and had it just against the wall for the month.

I do have to admit though, when I was about halfway through I totally forgot about some family photos we had done with Kaptured.by.Kay and had to break the 30 piece wardrobe and wear a long slinky white knitted sweater I had at the back of my closet, oh no!(eye roll) So here’s a couple photos to justify the add-on!

Thanks for reading through my personal experience with the capsule wardrobe and I hope you’re feeling encouraged to try it out yourself! It’s amazing coming to the realization that I really only wear about 20 different pieces of clothing out of what I have! Makes me more consciously aware of buying items and encouraged to get rid of them! 

LEAVE A NOTE – I would love to hear from you and your own experience in creating and wearing a capsule wardrobe! It was such a fun challenge, and would love any extra tips or tricks on staying faithful to the one rack!

XOX Cass

Apple Cider Sippin’ – Recipe

apple cider ingredients

WELCOME! to THE best apple cider you will ever make. I honestly cannot believe how YUMMY this was! I am also not one to declare to the world that something is THE BEST, unless it really is. so here you go!

Now this was the one that intimidated me. When I first set out to put this post together of my favourites for the fall, one staple for me is apple cider, and yes, the powdered ones. This time though, I wanted to try and actually MAKE the cider. So here we are!

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I am embarrassed to admit this, but I am quite the snob when it comes to apple and orange juices. I love the raw, pulpy, hand squeezed taste. My absolute favourites are ‘Simply Brand – Apple Juice’ and ‘Tropicana , Some pulp, Orange Juice” LOL! If you love cider as much as I do well then this will be a treat! Here is the full recipe to this delicious Apple Cider, Enjoy!

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Ingredients:

Serves 10-12

• 1 orange

• 1 lemon

• 10 apples (a mixture is good — we used Jazz apples and Granny Smiths)

• 1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon

•  1 small piece ginger, peeled and sliced

• 1 teaspoon all spice

• 12 cloves

• 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

•  3/4 cup brown sugar

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Instructions:

1. Peel the zest off the orange and lemon, being careful not to peel off the white pith (as this is very bitter). Cut all of the white pith off and discard, then cut the orange and lemon into slices (don’t worry about the seeds — they’ll be sieved out later).

2. Cut the apples into quarters.

3. Place the orange and lemon slices and peels into the slow-cooker pot along with the apples, cinnamon, ginger, all spice, cloves, vanilla extract and sugar. Pour in enough cold water to cover everything.

4. Turn the slow cooker to high, place the lid on and cook for three hours.

5. After three hours, use a potato masher to mash the fruit into the water, then place the lid back on and cook for a further 30-60 minutes.

6. Strain the liquid through a sieve into a large jug and serve immediately.

7. Alternatively you can cool, cover and refrigerate until needed. Simply reheat in a pan when ready to serve.

Have a recipe you’d like to share? or maybe your very own spin on Apple Cider? I would love to hear about it and add to my recipe book!

XOX

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1-2-3 – Roll! Your easiest pie crust yet!

Homemade Pie Crust? WHO has time for that?! Why you do of corse. With this simple recipe, you’ll be making this pie crust in your sleep, especially after you bite in to it! When I first started thinking about making my first pie a few years back I assumed I would just pick up a ready made pie crust from the grocery store. Nope. Apparently I married in to a connoisseur of all things baked/cooked from scratch.

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To get started here, always remember to wash your hands and take off your rings! Does any one else have a small trinket dish that they use when baking/washing hands/doing chores that they use to keep their treasures? Below you will see my place of choice. It is called the ‘Trinket Dish” from Three Corners Artisan.

Trinket Dish - Three Corners Artisan

You can find the Trinket Dish HERE.

Having a husband who avidly searches to cook new things is definitely not a problem for me! My husband is constantly showing and teaching me new ways to cook things, how to tell if something is done (or overdone, whoops!) and that sometimes it really is easier to just make it from scratch! Hence, this simple 3 step pie crust recipe. Don’t be intimidated! If I can do this, you can do this!

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4 Step Homemade Pie Crust

Ingredients:

  • 1-3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1-1/2 sticks butter (12 tablespoons), cut into slices
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp ice water

1) Mix flour and sugar in bowl.

2) Add about half of the butter.  Add the rest of the butter. Blend until the mixture turns into coarse crumbs (small pea size).

3) Slowly add the ice water and pulse until the dough gathers up into a ball.  If it doesn’t after a few seconds, add a few more drops of ice water until it does.

4) Take the dough and flatten it into a disc and place it on a sheet of floured plastic wrap. Refrigerate for about 30 minutes before rolling. Remember to use the plastic wrap trick from below!

If you’ve got any tricks up your sleeves on how to make pie crust, different designs or just want to share your experience with this recipe, let me know below in the comments! I would love to hear from you, and get new ideas! 

Happy Baking!

XOX – Cass

(Check out my 3 extra tips below to easier pie dough making!)

Pie Crust 101

3 Tips to the easiest pie crust!

Tip #1 : One thing that I did see online, that I did not have but would love to try one day, is someone suggested using a food processor to mix and blend the butter into your flour mixture. I took the rustic path of the pastry blender. 

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Tip #2 : When rolling out the dough to get it ready for the pan, place a piece of saran wrap overtop and underneath of the dough before pressing the rolling pin down. This will make your life, and washing time, so much easier! The dough will not stick to the rolling pin and will be a nice quick wrap up and toss when done.

Tip #3 : Once you have refrigerated and rolled out your pie crust, you can decide how you would like to form it. I always love the classic look of pinched edges and a lattice crust, but you can be creative! Remember, rustic is okay here: you want your pie to look homemade!