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Category Archives: Random

Random

What I’m Loving

Let’s talk about my life lately. I’ve been single parenting for the last 4.5 weeks straight while working, trying to maintain this blog (albeit poorly these days), half marathon training, volunteering for SMBRD, becoming a charter member of a new Rotary club in the city and keeping up with the book club. This week we sadly put our family dog of 16.5 years to rest. I also received Liam’s schedule for kindergarten in the fall and have been trying to figure out how that will fit in with work/day home. To say things have been a little bit hectic is an understatement for sure. BUT, I’m not here to talk about the things that are sad or frustration or stressful. I’m here to share the things I’m loving and bring a bit of positivity to your day.

BUT, I’m not here to talk about the things that are sad or frustration or stressful. I’m here to share the things I’m loving and bring a bit of positivity to your day. I’ve been looking forward to writing this post because I know you guys enjoy them and I love finding things to share with you. Let’s do it shall we?

  • Global Running Day – Here’s the thing about running – you don’t have to be able to run certain distances or paces to be considered a runner. Anyone who runs, is a runner. I am often frustrated with running feeling hard and like I’m never progressing. I have been questioning my sanity signing up for a half marathon. But in the end, there’s just something magical about running that keeps me tying my laces and hitting the trails. It’s a chance for me to move my body, to appreciate life, to clear my head, to vent my frustrations. It’s a way to make new friends, mourn losses, and celebrate successes. While I may not hit PR’s or aspire to run Boston, I know that I am doing good things while putting one foot in front of the other.
  • Evening walks with Liam. We’ve been getting out for near nightly walks around our neighbourhood and have worked our way up to going far enough to hit the trail near my house that I often run on. Liam was so excited about how “beautiful” it was when he saw it for the first time. I’m looking forward to many more evening walks throughout summer. 
  • Have you heard of Evelyn Hugo? If you’d been around these parts long enough, you’ll know I’m completely smitten with all of Taylor Jenkins Reid’s novels. Her latest is available next week and I was fortunate enough to receive an advanced copy from Simon and Schuster. The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo is not like any of TJR’s previous work but it will still have you flipping the pages to devour the story as fast as you can. So, you might want to plan to hit your favourite bookstore on June 13th to pick up your copy.
  • My Pound certification is this Sunday! I’m equal parts nervous and excited. I haven’t put much thought into what it will look like once I’m certified (see above re: life is crazy lately) but I’m hoping to do some pop-up classes around the city. I hope you’ll come!
  • Exactly What To Eat (and What to Avoid) To Have a Great Period
  • I helped a friend with some lifestyle shots of their Canada 150 shirts (soon to be available at Bower Ponds for my local pals). Liam and I had a fun evening of paddle boats and hanging at the playground together. I can’t wait to sport my shirt on Canada Day! 
  • Rhubarb everything! I love rhubarb season and was excited when my mom brought me a huge bag of it last weekend. So far I’ve made a healthified rhubarb apple crisp and plan to make some muffins whenever I can find a minute to hit the grocery store to buy some butter. What’s your favourite way to use rhubarb?
  • I need this bra from Lululemon.
  • I’m pretty sure I post something Ed Sheeran related every month but whatevs. Pour yourself a cup of tea and settle in for 13 minutes to watch the following:

What are you loving lately?

Random

Thinking Out Loud: Living Cleaner

This post wasn’t planned but I’ve had something on my mind for the last few weeks and felt compelled to talk about it. Joining up with the Thinking Out Loud link up over on Running with Spoons.

Have you ever looked around you at all the people suffering from symptoms and illnesses and wondered if it wouldn’t all go away if we got back to eating real, unprocessed food and using natural, chemical free products in our day to day lives? Why have we gotten so far away from natural living? It doesn’t make sense anymore.


It’s something I’ve always been conscious of, but admittedly often a bit lazy to execute on. We turn to processed food when we need something quick and easy, or simply because we’re not paying attention to what we’re purchasing. We buy our favourite beauty or personal care products without knowing what’s in them. We don’t think about the effects that our chemically enhanced world is having on our bodies.

I began reading WomanCode after Jo talked non-stop about it. I was curious to see if it could offer any advice on how to reduce some hormonal symptoms I experience regularly. While I haven’t finished the book or began to fully implement any of my learnings, it was a huge eye-opener as to just how important the food we eat is to all systems of our body. The endocrine system is hugely affected by the foods that we eat and plays into so many different things to ensure our body runs properly. I see so many women in my life struggling with stomach issues, reproductive issues, and other minor and major hormonal imbalances and think, “We can probably fix all of these by changing our eating habits”.

And then there are all the products we use daily. Our skin is the largest organ we have and how many times do you stop to think about how the ingredients in your soaps, lotions, shampoos and makeup affect you over time. When you start doing your research, you see that many ingredients in common items are carcinogenic, contain hormone disrupters and irritants. Even the products that claim to be natural still contain fragrance that consists of who knows what kind of garbage. And to think, all of this stuff is unregulated.

When Liam was first born I was doing everything in my power to keep things as natural as possible. I still remember to this day the look my uncle gave me when I told him Liam couldn’t eat any Cheerios because I didn’t want to expose him to processed foods. People don’t think about this stuff because it’s what we’ve done for years. Of course, I gave in to the convenience of processed foods and admit that Cheerios have taken up permanent residency in our pantry but I’m ready to make an effort again to be more conscious of what we’re consuming for the sake of mine and Liam’s health.

What I’m Doing to Live Cleaner

These are some of the changes I’ve already made to create a cleaner life for not only my body but for the planet as well.

  •  I’ve stopped using chemical cleaners around the house as much as possible. I use vinegar to clean most surfaces and if I purchase other cleaners, stick to the natural ones over regular brands.
  • I purchased a vegetable, fruit and egg share from a local farm. This will be my third year having a vegetable share but this year I purchased from a different farm (sorry Farmer Mike) where I can add organic chicken eggs and BC fruit to my biweekly pickups. Throughout the summer, I will really only need to purchase meat and hopefully will have some extra funds to buy from the organic market rather than the grocery store.
  • Slowly switching my beauty and personal care products. While I try to make an effort to choose cleaner products over others, I’m realizing that they aren’t all as clean as they seem. I also wasn’t conscious about the makeup and hair care products aside from my shampoo. While I’m not going to throw away everything in my bathroom, I’ll be slowly transitioning the products I use to things free of parabens, sulphates and other yucky ingredients. I just placed an order with Rocky Mountain Soap Company and am awaiting some samples from Beauty Counter. I’ve started using the Think Dirty app to see how the products I have rate in terms of clean vs dirty ingredients which has been slightly eye opening. I’ve even made the switch from regular tampons to the Diva Cup for a more natural and sustainable menstrual experience (sorry for the TMI fellas).

These changes are fairly small but I think over time will have a big impact. I want to make an effort to make more things from scratch, like yogurt and bread and continue down a path of sustainable, clean living. I know the journey won’t be perfect, it certainly hasn’t been over the nearly five years since Liam was born, but I think it’s important to be reminded of the effects our food and day to day products could have without us even knowing it.
What are your thoughts?
Are you mindful about the foods you eat?
Do you prefer to make staple foods from scratch and have good, easy recipes to share?
Have you changed out any products from your life to cleaner products?
Any products you recommend?

Random

May Long Weekend Recap

It’s been awhile since I’ve recapped a weekend and this past long weekend was absolutely perfect so I thought I’d share what we got up to. We were spoiled with the best weather ever, considering our May Long Weekend is typically always cold and snowy.

Friday

I was craving smokies for supper, so after picking Liam up from the day home, we headed to our local market to pick some up. Coincidentally, the Running Room was having a sidewalk sale a couple doors down and I ended up with a new pair of Brooks Launch 3’s (the exact same pair I purchased last year). I noticed that I’ve been having some shin pain, which is typical when I start ramping up my training in the spring, but it wasn’t really going away and figured it was time for new shoes.
We got home just before a spring thunder shower began so Liam watched a bit of Moana before I fired up the BBQ. After supper we went for a 45 minute walk around the neighbourhood. Liam’s getting so much more confident and fast on his bikes (he has a push bike and a peddle bike with training wheels) and we’re able to walk farther and farther every week. I love it.


Once the kiddo was in bed, I caught up on the latest episode of Scandal before heading to bed to read.

Saturday

Our morning started with bacon, eggs and coffee before packing up for a full day out of the house. First stop was the first market of the season. I filled up our growler with kombucha, Liam acquired an apple the size of his face plus a popsicle, and I indulged in the best garlic frites. There’s a new food truck serving smoothie/acai bowls that I have my eyes on to try one of these days!

I was lucky that package pick-up for the race I was running on Sunday was right by the market so we walked over there to get my bib before heading to Liam’s jujitsu class. I usually just loiter in the lobby of the dojo listening to the class, but I decided to soak up some sun and sat in the parking lot reading instead. It was perfect. Once class was over, we headed to the lake for more sunshine and family visits.

I didn’t pack Liam’s bathing suit since the lake was likely still cold with the last of the snow and ice only just recently melting away. I warned Liam not to go into the water but really I should have known I wouldn’t be able to keep him out. By the end of the afternoon he was fully submerged and having a blast. Good thing I was smart enough to at least bring a change of clothes.

By the time we headed home after supper, Liam was clearly exhausted. He fell asleep in the car and barely woke when I carried him inside to bed.

I laid out everything I needed for the following morning’s race, plus prepped some snacks for another busy day out before crawling into bed myself.

Sunday

I felt so bad having to wake Liam up early after a busy day. Luckily he was a trooper about it. We had a quick breakfast together and were off to the race start. I’ll recap the race in another post (once the photos are back) but I have to give a huge shout-out to Scott and Mary for getting up and out of the house early to watch Liam while I ran. I have the best friends out there.

After the race, Liam and I headed home so I could shower and change and then we were off to meet Scott and Mary again so we could convoy to the zoo! Yes, I realize I’m slightly crazy for tackling the zoo after a race on a long weekend, but I wouldn’t have changed it for the world.

The kiddos had a blast and were so well behaved the whole afternoon considering they had early mornings and it was so hot and crowded. We managed to see pretty much the entire zoo minus the dinosaur park before we were all starting to fade. Again, another shout-out goes to Scott who pulled both kiddos around in our wagon the entire afternoon. I likely wouldn’t have made it through the day if I’d been the one pulling them, haha.

We headed for an early dinner at Blue Star Diner in Bridgeland which was absolutely fantastic. I inhaled my buttermilk fried chicken sandwich so fast. It was at this point where the stiffness set in and I could barely walk back to the car. We said goodbye to our friends and hit the road back home. Of course, Liam fell asleep again in the car and I can’t say I blame him one bit.

Monday

I was hoping Liam would have had a bit of a sleep-in, but he was at my bedside promptly at 7am. We had a slow morning with Liam playing Lego and me with my book and coffee. I was beyond exhausted and admittedly a little grumpy.

My only goal for the day was to get groceries and all Liam wanted to do was go to the park. We managed to get out of the house just before lunch for groceries and then headed to the park in the early afternoon. We lasted just over an hour before the need to get ice cream became very real. Despite the fact that Liam hadn’t eaten a full meal since Sunday morning aside, we headed to the ice cream shop to indulge in our favourite flavour before heading home.

The rest of the day was spent playing on the balcony, BBQing and just hanging out before an early bedtime. I managed to get a couple loads of laundry folded while watching GirlBoss and then ended up staying up later than planned to finish my book.

I absolutely love the stage Liam is at right now. We have turned a corner with all of the whining and meltdowns and not listening which means we can really enjoy hanging out and having fun together. He’s such a funny kid and I loved having a full long weekend with him. The fun activities and perfect weather were just an added bonus.

How did you spend your long weekend?