Experience what all the farm kids know about life on a farm this December 14-15 in southern Alberta.
Alberta Open Farm Days are piloting its first-ever Winter Edition to its extremely popular summer program.
What you need to know
Three farms and a deli (Back to Good for soup & cake on the go) are participating in the winter edition! You may recognize some farms from your travel this summer.
Custom Woolen Mills
Your Local Ranch
Why I Love Elf On The Shelf:
We love when December 1st hits and Elf On The Shelf comes back from the North Pole and here’s why:
- The magic of it all! They think it is real and I love the Christmas magic that happens when they believe.
- Let’s be real – it is a parenting too for the whole month of December. The kids definitely act better when “Jingles The Elf” is watching.
We’re done having kids. The boys are now 8 & 11 so we’re out of the baby/toddler/preschooler stage. I have loved every stage but the older they get the more I see a little baby and want to squish their little cheeks and start again. KIDDING. I don’t want to start again. But I need something to keep me company during the day while the boys are in school. Pets are not an option (WAY too much work plus the whole allergy thing) so I’m becoming a Plant Mom.
In our house I am not the fun one. I am the one telling them to get dressed, eat their food, stop farting at the table – The classic broken record of a Mom.
But I am working on it.
Part of this process is talking to my husband about it. I needed him to step in and say no sometimes. After hearing me out about it he has been trying to letting me be the one to say yes. I can tell it is hard for him sometimes but he knows what a difference it makes to me to be able to play “nice guy” every once in a while. He is naturally more easy going than I am for a lot of things and I learn so much watching him with the kids.
So here is my goal:
- More ice cream.
- More fort building in the living room.
- More rough play in the house.
- More nerf battles in their underwear.
- Less room cleaning (unless it gets REALLY gross because there’s only so much I can take).
- More painting and playdoh.
- More stopping everything to sit and really listen. No distractions.
- More playing with food and being silly at dinner time.
There’s more to work on but it’s a work in progress. And I can only handle my couch cushions being on the floor more than on the couch for so long.
Deanne Ferguson is the owner of Box Social Event Planning. When she is not planning fun, family, friendly events she is finding the yummiest food for the Edmonton Home and Garden Show Food Stage. She loves her #cocktailMonday dates with her husband and chasing around her two boys. You can find her at @DeanneFerguson on Instagram and @BoxSocialYEG on Twitter.
Visiting your favourite places in Calgary is more affordable with the Calgary Attractions website.
The Cerebral Palsy Association in Alberta (CPAA) is ready to host their 13th Annual Life Without Limits Challenge event this September where people of all ages and abilities come together to celebrate their accomplishments, raise funds, and most of all … have fun!
This yearly event is not your typical walk-a-thon, as the CPAA puts a big focus on making the event fully inclusive and open to the community.
“Many of the individuals we work with have some form of a disability and live right in your community. This event is giving them a day to have fun with their friends and family. It’s something they look forward to each year. The more participants we have out, the more fun they have.” Says Joanne Dorn of the CPAA.
Each month, we play 10 questions with one of Alberta’s most interesting mamas. This month we get to know newborn photographer Hailey Hamilton. Hailey hails from Calgary, and is the owner and artistic talent behind Hailey Hamilton Photography. As a mom herself, Hailey gets that life with a new baby can be crazy, and strives to be flexible and understanding with her clients in order to make their experience relaxed and enjoyable. Connect with Hailey, and check out her beautiful portraits, by visiting her website or Facebook page.
1. How did your career as a photographer evolve towards a specialization in newborn photography?
At one time, I photographed almost everything. After a bunch of my friends had babies (and I was asked to take photos), I quickly learned how much fun it was to pose them and squish them into adorable curly positions. I found it was much easier to be creative with newborns and to be able to achieve the looks I was envisioning. As a mom myself, I’m also very comfortable working with babies!
2. What’s the most rewarding part of your job?
Having the opportunity to snuggle new babies is obviously amazing, but as an artist, the most rewarding thing for me is achieving the final finished portrait and seeing my vision come to life!
3. Which three words best describe your artistic style?
Clean, simple, minimal
4. It’s Sunday morning. How is your family spending the day?
Brunch at our favorite breakfast spot, and then wherever the day takes us!
5. What’s your favourite kid-friendly destination in Calgary?
My son is a teenager so we don’t usually do too many kid activities. But escape rooms and go karts are always a hit.
Growing up I LOVED my moms strawberry freezer jam. I remember getting excited when I saw my Dad bring home cases of strawberries because it meant that we were making jam soon. We would spend hours in the kitchen together washing the jars, mashing the strawberries, stirring in the sugar, and pouring the jam into jars ready to be frozen. All while listening to Sunday morning classics on CFCW because it isn’t canning unless you’re listening to the oldest honky tonk music right?
I loved when our cousins, friends or Grandparents stopped by and were able to help too. Cooking is always better when you’re working in a group!
That is why we were so excited to host a canning party with Bernardin. We wanted to recreate that feeling of friends and family coming together to cook while getting the kids involved.
It’s the words no parent wants to hear.
“Mom I am in the talent show!”
I mean I guess if you have a child prodigy that can sing and dance like Michael Jackson or play the piano like Beethoven or crush through wood planks like Chuck Norris – awesome. The talent show is for your child. But these words scared me. My kid isn’t talented.
And before you get all Sesame Street on me telling me every child has their own talents blah blah blah -hear me out. I know my kid is talented just not in a “I will be the next America’s Got Talent star” kind of way. And I remember how mean kids can be.
And then he drops this bomb on us…
It’s an original song. About Bulbasaur the least appreciated Pokemon.
By Victoria Smith
Stress is on the rise, particularly with women. But, I don’t need to tell you that, do I? Intuitively, we feel overwhelmed. From acting as a perpetual chauffeur to coordinating play dates, or from healthy meal planning to juggling sick days and attempting to work from home, motherhood is stressful. Here’s the deal, though, it can be less stressful when you have the right tools, strategies and mindset in place.
Before we get into five strategies that you can implement immediately, we need to start with mindset. If you think your day is going to be stressful, it will, because that’s how you’ve primed your brain. You’ve given it the signal to find evidence of stress wherever you look. To counter this, what I want you to do is start every day by setting an intention. Believe me, I know that if you wake with the kids, it can be hard to find a moment for that, so a fall back can be to write out your intention and set it next to your alarm clock. What should that intention be? I put it back to you – how would you like your day to go? For example, my daily intention is to show up as an engaged parent, wife and friend, and a Rockstar entrepreneur. Yours could be to a search for gratitude. Or to be mindful. The intention is personal to your needs and desires, but set one and start each day reminding yourself of it. Only then will the following strategies take real effect.
1. Stop comparing yourself to other moms
It is so easy to get into a shame-spiral of how you are performing as a mother when your friends or Insta-community are throwing Pinterest-perfect parties for a two year-old. Or maybe you pick
up your child from daycare only to find out that they’ve bitten another child – of course it would be the most well-behaved child of the seemingly put together momma. We are all on our own motherhood journeys. We all have our own past, our own challenges, and our own beliefs to grapple with. Just because you do things differently doesn’t mean you’re doing them worse. First step if you find yourself in this comparison black hole? Take a social media break. If the comparison is coming from in-person interactions, before each encounter remind yourself that you are doing the best with what you have, and your kids are well-loved. Because at the end of the day, your child won’t care about the perfect party or baked goods or that they were potty trained a year before all the other kids. They’ll remember time spent one-on-one with you, the cuddles and bedtime stories. Presence and love matter most.