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Edmonton

In Lifestyle, Random Thoughts, Uncategorized on
May 20, 2019

I Left On a Solo Trip and Nothing Happened

This week I got to go to Quebec on an amazing holiday with Chevrolet Canada. It was everything a solo trip should be. Carefree, I got to meet some amazing people, and I ate all the food.

Chateau Frontenac

Meal of choice when solo dining

Photo: Lucas Scarfone Photography

Photo: Lucas Scarfone Photography

We got to leisurely drive the new Chevrolet Blazer through rural Quebec and participate in traditional activities like making paper while learning more about the history of the region. The new Blazer looks amazing with it’s bold exterior, the technology is state of the art (the navigation got us out of a jam when the road we needed to be on was covered in fallen trees because of a storm), and even the base model was so well equipped. Plus it was a lot of fun to drive!

Photo: Lucas Scarfone Photography

Photo: Lucas Scarfone Photography

Photo: Lucas Scarfone Photography

Photo: Lucas Scarfone Photography

Photo: Lucas Scarfone Photography

While I was gone for the 5 days I didn’t worry about the kids once because guess what? Dads are parents too.

They are not babysitting.

They know they have to feed the kids every day.

They know that they have to get them to school and that they need to be fully clothed.

They know there are music classes, sports, and other activities to get them too.

They know all of these things.

They just may not do things the same way as us as mothers so we worry. We set them up for disaster by micro managing from afar. We call and check in because we miss our babies and we ask if they have been eating ok? How are their poops? Are they reading enough? Is the homework done? What has screen time been like? How many times a day are they hearing words of encouragement?

I’m not kidding. I have heard all of these conversations from Moms away from their kids. Especially the poop thing. Why as Mother’s are we so invested in another humans poop? But that’s a whole other blog post.

Now during these five days away did the boys eat a vegetable every meal? Probably not. But my husband works full time and the boys are in the thick of baseball and lacrosse right now so meals, even when I am home, are a little off these past couple of weeks. Did they wear what I think they should have worn to school every day? Again probably not but dealing with a picky 7 year old that hates buttons on his pants means picking your battles. Did they get some extra screen time? Probably. But my husband knows how obsessed our 10 year old is with Pokemon right now so they had a boys night and went to see the new movie even though it was a school night. But guess what was the first thing the boys wanted to talk to me about was? How cool Dad is that he took them to a movie on a school night. They are creating these memories and spending time together while I am away.

Of course I helped as much as I could before I left by stocking up on groceries so he wouldn’t have to do that on top of everything else in their busy week. I made sure the laundry was done and bathrooms were clean. I made lunches for the first day I was gone the night before to make their morning easier. Little things to help out.

But I didn’t worry. It was 5 days. He is an amazing Dad and the boys love when they get one on one time with him. I came back home late this weekend, hung out with the kids for a bit because they stayed up to see me and sent them to bed after hearing all about the cool things they did with Dad. We put them to bed then I sat and enjoyed a cocktail my husband made me and listened to his stories about how cool a crock-pot was to use while I was gone.

 

Box Social Event PlanningDeanne 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. Deanne was invited by Chevrolet Canada to participate in this event. All opinions however are her own. 

In Lifestyle, Parenting, Recipe on
May 5, 2019

Sick of Making School Lunches? We’ve Got You Covered Until Summer Vacation!

It’s May and I don’t know about you guys but I am sick of making school lunches and the kids are tired of their lunches. But don’t worry we’ve got you covered with a list of easy, quick and fun lunches to carry you over until summer vacation!

  1. Wraps – The easiest transition from boring bread. Some favourites in our house are: banana and sunflower seed butter (school safe and same taste as wow butter without all the sugar), ham and cheese, jam, and cream cheese and cucumber.
  2. Crackers and cheese – Add pickles (if you’re kids are into it!), sausage, and their favourite crackers to make an easy lunch.
  3. Breakfast cookies – The kids will get a kick out of being able to eat cookies for lunch and you’ll feel great knowing they will be full and ready to take on their afternoons. There’s so many great recipes on Pinterest or you can check out the ones we love to make (and are SO easy to adapt to taste) here.
  4. Cereal – Keeping with the breakfast theme, send individual packs of cereal with them to school for lunch! Keep it simple and let them eat it dry or send some milk in a thermos.
  5. Leftovers – This one is best if the kids have access to a microwave but is such a time saver if you can make it work!
  6. Pizza Roll Ups – This is a little more prep but can be made ahead in big batches and can be kept in the freezer until you want to use them. Get pizza dough (make it yourself or pick it up pre-made at the store), roll it out, lay down your favourite toppings, roll it up (think cinnamon bun rolling), slice into even pieces, lay out on a lined baking sheet and bake. So easy and delicious!
  7. Muffins – Cram them full of good, healthy ingredients and they won’t miss their sandwiches at all AND they will stay full until the end of the day.
  8. Mini Pancakes – Make the night before to make the morning easier, add some fruit and the kids have a fun, easy lunch.
  9. Pita Bread and Hummus – The EASIEST lunch for those days when you just don’t have time. Bonus if you have those individual packs from Costco. Even a two year old can pack this easy lunch!
  10. Let Them Choose – Give them parameters (has to include all the food groups for example) but them let them go wild. No restrictions. It is always interesting to see what combination they come up with!

We hope some of these give you inspiration to get through the school year! We’d love to hear what your kid’s favourite lunches are. Share below!

Can we also agree that the cute shapes, googly eyes, and over the top bento boxes be done for the year? No one needs that pressure right now. Save it for September Karen.

 

Box Social Event Planning

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 #cocktailsMonday dates with her husband and chasing around her two boys. You can find her at @DeanneFerguson on Instagram and @BoxSocialYEG on Twitter.

In Edmonton, Explore on
April 29, 2019

It’s Farmer’s Market Season!

We LOVE Farmer’s Markets. There is nothing better than being able to enjoy all the amazing local produce, meet the people growing your food, and finding unique gifts from people in your community. When you buy from a vendor at the market you know where your dollars are going. Plus we promise each vendor does a little happy dance with each purchase. We have written multiple posts declaring our love like this one and we also have a great recipe using the freshest market ingredients here.

One of our favourite markets to visit is Callingwood Farmer’s Market who is celebrating 35 years this year making it one of the longest running markets in Edmonton.

Read more

In Lifestyle, Parenting, Random Thoughts on
March 23, 2019

Is Your Child Ready For Sleepaway Camp?

In conversation with Dr. Ganz Ferrance.

My kids are getting older, they’re 7 & 9 now, and I’ve been contemplating a summer camp where they actually stay there for a week – the sleepaway camp. I recall being around 8 years old when I attended my first overnight camp and I have really fond memories of it! It was very strange at first, and I was a little homesick too.

We decided to have an expert weigh in on some of the questions I had around knowing if your child is ready for sleepover camp. Alberta Mamas reached out to Dr. Ganz Ferrance, a registered psychologist in Alberta to discuss.

Read more

In Uncategorized on
March 18, 2019

#MomCrushMonday – Contributor Rachelle

WAHM/D, SAHM/D, Work out of the home or other?

Both a Stay at Home mom and an entrepreneur mom running my business called Momentum Health & Wellness.

# of Kids? Ages?

I have 3 daughters: 6 year old and 4 year old twins! I’m not sure who’s going to need a holiday when they are teenagers … my husband or myself!

What movie makes you cry?

The Notebook makes me cry every time!

Tell us about a mom/dad who inspires you?

My mom inspired me.

She passed away from a brain tumour when I was 7 years old. I don’t have a lot of memories of her, but what I do remember is that she was a strong, kind and loving lady who fought till the bitter end for her life and still made time for her 5 children despite having cancer.  So on the days where I feel like I’m failing or struggling, I think of her strength and realize life is too short to worry about the small things and to live each day to its fullest.

What’s the fondest memory you have of your life as a mom/dad so far? The biggest challenge?

My fondest memory of being a mom so far is watching my daughters grow. Watching them learn new skills, observing how they solve a problem on their own and listening to their giggles when they play a new game they made up!

My greatest challenge being a mom so far is parenting 3 children differently. No one warns you about this when you decide to have more than 1 child!!

Would you rather be able to see 10 minutes into your own future or 10 minutes into the future of anyone but yourself? Why?

I wouldn’t see 10 minutes into the future of myself or anyone else.  I am trying to be more present with my life and live for right now, in this moment, and appreciate all the little things around me.

You and your oldest child switch bodies for an hour. What do they do? What do you do?

If my oldest daughter (6 year old) and I would switch bodies for an hour, she would make herself a hot chocolate with all the marshmallows she could fit in the cup, drive my vehicle to the nearest 7-11 and buy herself a slurpee, then she would would pick her own show to watch in my bedroom. (She was pretty happy to answer that question!

I would colour a picture, ask for a snack and take a nap!

 

Rachelle Howse is a mom to 3 young girls and owner of Momentum Health and Wellness in Edmonton, Alberta. She has a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology and over 12 years of experience in the fitness industry working as a Certified Exercise Physiologist and Pre & Post Natal Fitness Specialist. She started her company to inspire and educate others about fitness and wellness. Her goal is to create a community of prenatal and postnatal women who support one another through their health and wellness journey as well as educating families on the importance of creating a healthy environment at home and being a positive role model for their children. 

Visit Rachelle atwww.momentumhealthandwellness.ca, reach out to her at rachelle@momentumhealthandwellness.ca, and follow her on Facebook or Instagram for motivation and inspiration!

In Parenting, Uncategorized on
March 3, 2019

Parenting Hack: Water and Bubbles Solve Everything

I remember my Mom saying that no matter what kind of melt down the kids are having, water solves everything. In my 10 years of parenting (I know it’s not much yet but give me a bit of street cred. I’ve so far survived sleepless nights, potty training, teething, first days of school, and homework frustrations.) I have found this to be true.

If a child is grumpy give them bubbles or stick them in water. It is a no fail trick in our house.

It can be a lot of water such as a lake when we’re camping, a pool day, or a walk by the river. It can be a little bit of water like a bathtub, playing in the sink and “washing” all their toy cars, or running through a sprinkler.

No matter what the water is; a bit of water will help distract and calm anyone. It is where we have had our best conversations, it tires them out making bedtimes easier and more relaxing and there is just something tranquil and calming about being near it. It allows for quiet.

And then there are the bubbles.

Enough said. You don’t even need actual bubbles to calm down a child. You can just try to say it together. I promise after trying three times you will both be giggling again.

If you actually have bubbles on hand blowing the bubbles is a great way to take deep breaths. This is especially useful if you have younger kids. Trying to explain to them deep breaths is hard but if you tell a three year old to blow bubbles, chances are they will happily do it.

We’re always looking for more Parenting Hacks. What works for your family? Let us know OR become an Alberta Mama contributor here.

 

Box Social Event Planning

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 #cocktailsMonday dates with her husband and chasing around her two boys. You can find her at @DeanneFerguson on Instagram and @BoxSocialYEG on Twitter