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Chip Lake, Alberta

If you’ve ever driven on the Yellowhead Highway around Wildwood and Entwistle, you’ve no doubt noticed a massive lake along the highway. During a recent road trip we actually saw a sailboat on this lake and I was intrigued so, decided to take the kiddies on a road trip to Chip Lake.

There are smaller tenting sites, larger open sites and then also group sites for camping, though there is no power. At $25/night it’s super affordable!

  

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Day-Tripping: Haskap Picking at Rosy Farms

UPick season is here!

We are all feeling it – the need to “get out” but the worry of too many people, not enough distance…it can make anyone want to stay at home. After being cooped up for too long, we decided to get out of the city for the day and go pick some Haskaps at Rosy Farm’s UPick for a fun treat, some fresh country air, and a whole lotta Blue Skies. 

For those that are wondering “what the heck is a Haskap?” prepare to have your mind (and tastebuds) blown. 

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In Health, Lifestyle, Parenting, Uncategorized on
June 19, 2020

HELPING EMPOWER A CHILD WITH PERFECTIONIST TENDENCIES – PART 2

By Ashley Anjlien Kumar, The Confidence Coach

In Part 1 of this 3-part series, I described some of the behaviours a child might exhibit if they have perfectionist tendencies. To refresh your memory, check out the post here. Not only will this help a child with perfectionism, but it can prevent it from developing in the first place.

PART 2: CELEBRATE MISTAKES

Sounds counter-intuitive doesn’t it? Aren’t we supposed to prevent our kids from making mistakes? As kids we were always cautioned against making mistakes, right? So why do I want to celebrate my kids mistakes?

I hear kids all the time, especially in a dance class or sports, “I hope I don’t make a mistake” or “I hope I don’t get it wrong.” They hope they don’t make a mistake because they view the mistake as a diminishment of who they are. That somehow, they aren’t good enough. Many kids, by age 5 or 6 years old, are already determining their self-worth by their mistakes.

In my family, similar to many conservative traditional families, making mistakes was not okay. You did not make mistakes. Mistakes meant punishments. 

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In Recipe on
June 17, 2020

Lilac Sugar Recipe

Spring in Alberta means lilacs. Those fragrant little flowers start popping out in June and it seems like everywhere you walk you can smell them. Unfortunately the season is way too short. That is why we want to help you preserve the smell of Spring with this beautiful, easy recipe for Lilac Sugar.

Lilac Sugar can be used to replace regular sugar in cookies, biscuits, scones, tea, cocktails, salad dressing, marinades and more. Wherever a hint of floral, fragrance could be used to elevate your dish! The taste is not over powering but if you want just a bit you can always mix in half lilac and half regular sugar.

This will keep in the pantry for months so make a big batch (the recipe below is easily doubled, tripled or quadrupled depending on how many lilacs you can find!) and enjoy the smell of fresh, beautiful lilacs until they come back next year.

Lilac Sugar Recipe

1/4 cup Lilacs

3/4 cups Sugar

Step 1 – Pick the flowers you want to sugar. When you are using flowers for baking and cooking make sure you collect the flowers from an area you are familiar with so you know if they have been sprayed with any chemicals or toxins.

Step 2 – Pick off the flower parts from the stem trying to remove as much green stem as possible. If a little gets into the sugar it is OK but for looks you basically want just the flower. They are very easy to pull off with your fingers. Avoid using scissors as it will bruise the petals releasing the fragrance before you want to. If you can do this step outside it is best as tiny bugs and twigs will come out.

Step 3 – Rinse and wash the flowers to remove any other unwanted bugs, leaves, or twigs. Shake the flowers under a gentle stream of water to keep the flowers intact.

Step 4 – Spread the flowers evenly on a tea towel to dry for at least an hour. You want the flowers to have no excess water on the petals or your sugar will clump.

Step 5 – Once the flowers are dry layer the flowers and the sugar into a mason jar. Don’t worry about even layers as you will be shaking the jar over the next few days. Make sure to leave a few centimetres of room at the top of the jar to allow for movement when shaking.

Step 6 – Shake the contents of the jar every day for a week. I usually put the jar by the coffee maker to remind me to shake it every morning. As you go about your day if you walk past the jar give it a little shake too. The more you shake the more the flavours and fragrances come out. This is a great job for kids!

Step 7 – Once a week passes the sugar is ready! You can sift the sugar to remove the flowers and leave just the flavoured sugar or leave them in. They are edible and make a beautiful addition when you use the sugar.

Homemade Paint!

homemade paint

As we spend more time at home and try to not run to the store for every little thing, I am finding that we are trying to use what we already have on hand. Or, make what we need from things we have here. OR, just make things because we have nothing else to do! For my son’s Art Week at school we were given some projects to create at home. One of the projects was window painting with homemade paint. I wanted to share it here because it’s quick, fun and cleans up easily!

Homemade Paint

Homemade Paint

  • Flour
  • Liquid Dish Soap
  • Warm Water
  • Food Colouring

Mix equal parts of flour, soap and warm water in a large bowl. We used 1/2 a cup of each, but depending on how much paint you’d like you can adjust. Use a whisk to ensure that all the flour is mixed in. Find some small bowls and add the uncoloured paint to them. We used old plastic applesauce containers that I keep in the craft supplies. Use food colouring to create your own custom colours of paint! A while back at the grocery store I found these Neon food colours, they created some really pretty shades.

homemade paint

We painted on the window at our front door with a variety of brush types. Any mistakes we made were easily wiped away with a wet cloth. We also tried the paint on paper and canvas, with success!

homemade painting

What homemade projects have you been enjoying with the kids? Let us know!

Every Day GirlEdmonton Real Estate

 

In Business, Explore, Lifestyle, Parenting on
May 25, 2020

3 THINGS PARENTS NEED TO DO TO HELP EMPOWER A CHILD WITH PERFECTIONIST TENDENCIES

By Ashley Anjlien Kumar, The Confidence Coach

Does your child get down on herself? Is she hard on herself? A ‘perfectionist’ child? 

Some parents have reached out to me to ask what they can do to help their child who they believe has perfectionist tendencies. As someone who grew up with a mother with perfectionist tendencies, I picked up those qualities too in many ways. It isn’t easy going into the adult world expecting and wanting things to be perfect from the start, and then realizing there will be many roadblocks, ‘plan B’s’ – which a perfectionist mostly hates, and even failures. — What? Failure? Aarrgh (running in the opposite direction…Right?)

I’ve been working on those tendencies since I was 19 years old and have worked to diminish the effects of these habits on my life. There are adults in their 60’s now trying to unravel their perfectionist habits so they can learn to enjoy life more. This is isn’t easy as we get older, so the sooner we start with young kids, the better off they will be in the long run.

There isn’t one single answer that will ‘fit’ each child because each child is unique. But here are some ways to help your child that will benefit her regardless, and will help to increase the connection in your relationship.

First, what are some signs of a perfectionist child?

  • Gives up easily after only 1 or 2 attempts of something,
  • Unable to overcome mistakes,
  • Has difficulty managing change,
  • Self-critical, self-conscious, or easily embarrassed,
  • Sensitive to criticism even if it’s constructive,
  • Anxiety about making mistakes,
  • Procrastinates or avoids challenging tasks,
  • Tendency to stay in comfort zone,
  • Emotionally and socially inhibited,
  • Critical of others,
  • Difficulty decision making…

These are just a few.

So what can you do?

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In Lifestyle, Parenting, Random Thoughts on
May 7, 2020

Mother’s Day DIY #TakeOverThursday

Coffee Grounds – Repurposing for Masks and More!

One of my favourite things to do is to use things I have around the house for multiple purposes. Almost everything has multiple purposes – Pinterest is an AMAZING example/rabbit hole of this – so when you are done with your coffee for its initial intended energizing properties, what else can it do for you?

I absolutely love this face mask for many reasons – coffee has potent antioxidant properties that can help protect your skin from sun damage, temporarily firm up the skin, and overall promote good skin health. All you need are a few things from the pantry, some used coffee grounds, and some self-care time. It’s also a great gift to mix up and pop in a self-care basket for a friend or a special mom in your life!

You’ll Need:

  • ½ Cup used coffee grounds (cooled)
  • ½ Cup unsweetened cocoa powder (organic if possible)
  • 1 Cup Whole Milk or Unsweetened Almond Milk
  • 1 Tbsp of Lemon Juice (fresh, not the fake stuff/If you have dry skin, substitute with Olive Oil or Almond Oil)
  • 1 Tbsp of Honey (for oily or acne prone skin, use additional lemon juice instead of honey)
  • A bowl

Directions:

Mix the coffee grounds and cocoa powder together in the bowl. Add milk and stir into a paste – use less if you want a thicker paste. Add in the lemon juice and honey, stir until you get the consistency you want – spreadable and thick but not overly gloopy or runny. Add more milk if it’s too thick, add more coffee grounds if it’s too thin. Apply to a clean, freshly washed face and allow to sit and dry for up to 20 mins. Rinse, dry, and moisturize as usual!

You can do this mask once a week (it’s especially great because of the firming properties before an event – when we get to go to them again) and you can keep the leftover mixture in an air-tight container in the fridge for about a week (smell it first – it’s the milk that will go off) – if you have any leftover, that is! It also makes an amazing scrub in the shower to help exfoliate, remove dirt, and dead skin cells on both your face and body.

Benefits of a Coffee Mask:

  • Coffee beans reduce redness and inflammation and can reduce the look of under-eye circles because it helps circulate blood flow.
  • Cocoa powder is high in sulfur, which helps fight acne. It’s also an amazing antioxidant!
  • Milk helps with hydration and that healthy “Glow”
  • Lemon Juice helps brighten, tighten and lighten with the power of Vitamin C
  • Honey is super moisturizing and the natural wax allows the skin to retain that hydration!

Keep those grounds! 

Coffee grounds are so multi-purpose. I usually keep them both wet (for masks, scrubs and gardening/indoor plants) and dry (just leave in a bowl and stir every so often to dry it out, for an easy mosquito repellant). Here are some more tips!

How to Use in your Garden

Mix wet/cooled coffee grounds in with your compost, organic materials, or into soil that needs a little extra acidity, like strawberries, radishes, peppers, parsley and sweet potatoes. A little in with your tomatoes is great too (as well as crushed eggshells) – just work about ¼ of a cup into the soil. If you have pets that might eat it, use less and really work it in so you don’t end up with over-caffeinated puppers. 

And those lemons that you juiced? Use the shells for easy seed starters – Just remove all the pulp from inside with a spoon, cut the bottom a bit so it stands up (but doesn’t make a hole), place in a tray (I love reusing berry containers for this purpose) fill with potting soil and add your seeds! When it’s time to add them to the garden, just poke a hole in the bottom, pop them into the holes and cover with dirt – it’s quick, easy + compostable!

For Mosquitoes/bugs – Burn those coffee grounds!

  • Start with DRY, used coffee grounds.
  • Place the grounds in a bowl or on a flat surface outside.
  • Burn the grounds like you would incense.
  • Choose a spot upwind for best results.
  • Keep away from places pets/children might hit or step on them.
  • Set up a few throughout your yard to maximize the effect!

As we learn to do more with less, and realize that many of the things we thought we needed… aren’t so necessary at all.. As we go back to nature and reusing and repurposing as alternatives for the things we can’t get as easily – not only are we returning to an all-natural way of life, but we are giving the earth a chance to heal.

Jeanie is a Mom, Master Aromatherapist and the Owner of WildRose Perfumery, where each scent is carefully blended and hand-crafted. Each creation is made specifically for you based on your personal tastes, with care and attention to every detail, with organic, natural materials and pure Essential Oils. Jeanie also hosts other local makers on her website! 

In Events, Health, Lifestyle, Parenting, Random Thoughts on
April 29, 2020

Ten Silver Linings to Self-Isolation

Negativity and fear seem to be a daily fixture in society right now.

I know I have had many sleepless nights and tumultuous days worrying about everything that is beyond my control.  In order to maintain sanity I have chosen to focus on what we still have, and some positive changes amongst all of this crazy Covid-19 chaos. Last night as my husband and I curled up with our glass of wine to watch the last episode of Tiger King, it dawned on me that this was the first Netflix series we had been able to watch in its entirety since the birth of our first daughter seven years ago! We have a million series we want to watch, but never the time to sit down and binge. This hiatus has allowed us the gift of trashy television viewing without guilt! So here are a few more silver linings I’ve been able to identify amongst one of the larger storm clouds of our lives.

#1 The excuse to wear crap clothing

For reasons unbeknownst to everyone, including myself, I have saved much of my childrens’ hole-y, ripped and slightly stained clothing. This is perfect, because now we can save our nicer and more socially acceptable wardrobes for the return to normalcy. As for now, its shredded leggings and mismatched socks all the way! 

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