RECIPE – Healthy Pancakes.

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* The below recipe will make 3-4 pancakes (same size as the ones pictured above). Double up if you’re making them for your family or anyone extra hungry! 

INGREDIENTS:

* 1 cup rolled oats (note: if you do not have a blender or food processor to grind the oats then use oat flour)

* 1 tsp baking powder

* a pinch of salt

* 1/2 tsp cinnamon (I usually add “2 shakes” from the bottle we have).

* 1 tsp vanilla

* 1 egg

* 1/2 cup almond milk

* butter (to grease the pan or griddle); grass-fed is best!

*Berries for either topping or adding to the mix (tip: when you add them to the mix directly, the cooked berries give the pancakes the sweetness they are lacking)

*Optional: additional toppings – syrup, peanut or almond butter, nutella and butter

TO MAKE THEM:

If you have a fairly high power blender like I do, then you’re in luck! All you need to do is pour all ingredients in the blender and mix! Otherwise, pour all of the ingredients into a mixing bowl and whisk together. Cook on medium heat, flipping twice, until they are golden and centers are no longer wet.

I hope you enjoy these as much as my family and I do!

Happy mommying,

Jennifer ❌⭕️

The top 5 Baby Products I Cannot Live Without!

Note: Tap each photo to identify what it is.

For first time parents like my husband and I, shopping for baby products can be an overwhelming process. We hadn’t had a baby in our extended families for over 12 years and as technology has evolved very quickly so have baby products. We had found advice from relatives to be quite out dated. In my quest for all things baby, I spent a lot of time online in “mom forums”, reading articles and researching latest products, trends, and consumer reviews. The lists of products were endless – there is something out there for everything (think wipe warmer)! If I wasn’t already feeling confused, I sure was now. To ensure I was organized through this process, I began researching around 4 months into my pregnancy and created lists with products that interested me along with their various price points and where they could be purchased. Staying organized gave me ample time to make sound decisions. I made multiple trips to various retailers( because lets face it, sometimes you just have to see an item in person!) and even dragged my husband out with me a few times.

I was very fortunate to have had a baby shower thrown for me by my family. This allowed me to create a registry for any and all of our desired baby items. I chose to create mine with Babies R US mainly because of how accessible they are with multiple locations across my province and the fact that it truly is a one stop shop. They have everything from baby furniture to nursing attire and anything you can think of in between! Although there are so many amazing products that both my husband and I loved, I’m here to tell you that after experiencing 4 months with a newborn, you absolutely do not need as many things as you think you do. I’ve always been a believer in quality over quantity and this extends to my choices in clothing and footwear. It’s better to invest in pieces that you know are practical and will last the test of time (think a second or third child) than to accumulate a stack of products you may or may not use. With this in mind, please continue reading for my list of the top 5 products I could not live without. Select the product name to link directly to where it can be purchased and to learn more about it.

[4moms] Infant Tub

I mean, really? Would you expect a company founded by women, and moms to not make it on my list? 4moms have an array of amazing products! One of my favourites is their infant tub. It’s ergonomical, sturdy and well thought out. It contains a temperature feature where you simply place the gauge (located on the tub) under running bath water and it will display the water temperature using colours and levels of comfort zones. They make it so easy to know when the water is just right! This tub also comes with a cup that is used to rinse your baby and includes several “valves” that allow for easy draining of bath water. To make things even better, the tub contains a water reservoir that is separate from where baby lays so that you can use the clean water to rinse your baby. I personally use a combination of the clean water as well as empty out the soapy water by opening all valves and adding clean water. 4moms makes bath time a dream! Especially for first time parents who are nervous as ever.

[Graco] Pack ‘n Play Playard

The reasons that this product works for my family are endless! This was actually an item I hadn’t considered until my mother suggested I add it to my registry. It is so versatile and the best part is you can pack it up and take it with you to a friend or relatives home. We spend most of our time on the main level of our home where our living room and kitchen are located. For this reason, the pack ‘n playard has become a lifesaver! For us,  it was not practical to lug the bassinet up and down the stairs twice a day so that our son could nap in it. It was also not practical to bring him back up to his bedroom where the change table resides, each time we had to change a diaper or his outfit (with a baby you will want to take quick action and get things done as soon as possible). This is where the pack ‘n playard comes into the picture! It contains a reversible napper and changer for newborns up to 15 lbs. Once your baby reaches this threshold you will remove the insert and use the mattress located in the actual playard. Up until our son reached 15 lbs we kept all of his diapers, wipes, change of clothes and several toys in a basket that we placed in the pack ‘n playard. Everything looked neat and organized and there was no need to run all over the house to retrieve things.

[Halo] Bassinest Swivel Sleeper

Oh Halo, I love your bassinest! I’m smiling as I type this. As a sleep deprived mother and one that is nursing, the last thing you want to constantly do is get in and out of bed to nurse and check on your baby throughout the night. The Halo bassinest offers a plethora of amazing features. To name a few, it has a 360 degree swivel which makes getting in and out of bed easy. The bassinest itself, comes right onto or up to your bed (depending on how you choose to position it) so that you can see baby at your eye level. The front opens right up and you can conveniently remove your baby without leaving your bed! This is especially great if you nurse your baby laying down in bed.

[UPPAbaby] Vista Stroller

I know what you’re thinking, especially if you’ve heard of this brand or done some research into strollers. This is one pricey item! I mean for $1100+ (CAD) you could buy A LOT of things. Strollers are a fairly expensive baby item to begin with. Before you overlook this product let me tell you a bit about what it features. It has the option of carrying more than one child via their rumble seats. It includes a bassinet (for easy transfer from a car seat) but also allows for the option of easily connecting the UPPAbaby Messa carets – think not waking baby when their asleep in the car. You could also technically use the bassinet for sleeping through the night in your home. The basket located at the bottom of the stroller is enormous (by stroller standards)! I’ve done full grocery shops and Costco hauls using this basket – no buggy required! The stroller itself,  is easy to open and close and lighter weight than a lot of others on the market. I cannot say enough about this product! If you’re deciding between the UPPAbaby Vista and another brand that is slightly more economical, I would encourage you to spend the extra money and purchase the UPPAbaby.

[Dorel] Baby Knightly Reclining Glider

This glider has been a life saver! Not only is it stylish, it is comfortable and built to last! Although an investment piece, when baby gets a bit older you can transition this to any other room in your home to instantly elevate the look. The thick padding and plush fabric allow you to sit in this glider for hours (and with a baby you may very well be doing just that). It’s gliding motion allows for rocking baby back and forth and is sure to assist in getting your baby to sleep (I speak from experience here!). It also fully reclines to a laying down position so you can put your feet up and sleep or take a nap in the chair. It’s happened to me on more than one occasion. Another bonus, It’s 360 degree swivel makes it convenient to turn completely around and grab things close by (I always keep my pump near by).

Please keep in mind that this post was created solely on the experiences and opinions of both myself and my husband. I understand and respect that others may feel differently or have had different experiences.

Please feel free to leave me a comment or question!

Happy mommying,

Jennifer ❌⭕️

 

 

 

 

How we Organized our Sons Nursery

 

So you’ve made it to the halfway mark of your pregnancy, or perhaps a little further and you’re ready to get this baby out of you! This can be an exhausting time, but there is fun to be had. Planning for your baby’s nursery, especially if you love decorating (and who are we kidding, shopping!) like I do, can bring lots of fun to an otherwise uncomfortable time.

If you’re someone who sits on the other side of the fence on this, then you may feel it’s quite a daunting task. Not to worry, regardless of your level of expertise, I’m here to help! Let’s begin with the basics – the items you will need to complete the room.


Basic Nursery Items:

  • Crib
  • Mattress (including sheets)
  • Change table (including pad and sheets)

Additional Items if Budget Permits, that are Really Useful:

Dresser. If you’ve accumulated quite a bit of clothing up to this point, a dresser is most likely necessary.

Change table and dresser combo. Yes, another dresser – because you can never have too much storage! It’s also quite common these days to find dresser/change table combinations. Talk about space saver? These are great for those of you working with limited space.

Glider or rocking chair. Although an investment, this is a life-saver. A glider will come in handy in the early days when baby is waking to feed multiple times throughout the night. You will want to set yours up in whichever room you will share with baby for the first few months. We originally placed ours in his nursery only to realize it’s much more practical to have it in our master bedroom. When you’re a first time mother waking up a handful of times through the night, the last thing you want to do is wander the halls to get to the glider!

Diaper Genie. This one is self-explanatory! You will want a diaper genie for easy disposal and management (keeps in any odors) of your little ones diapers. They are available in all types of colours and are more an accessory than anything.

Mirror.  This is also considered an accessory, but mirrors are staples in any room. Also a bonus, because as your baby grows you will find they love looking at themselves in mirrors.

Bins and storage baskets. Bins and baskets are another life-savers and can both brighten and elevate any space! They are the perfect way to bring in a sense of your personal style while also keeping all of baby’s most prized possessions organized!

Clothing hangers. Hangers can be used to display items such as outfit sets, pants, shirts, jackets and so forth. You will want to store most items such as sleepers, socks, towels and blankets in either bins, or a dresser.

Shelving. Shelves are an excellent space saver. If you’re limited with closet and dresser space, consider displaying books or toys on a floating shelf!

Accessories (wall art, stuffed animals, pillows, stools, picture frames, lamps etc.) Accessories will help to bring your theme together (if you have one) and make the space unique and your baby’s own. We added a picture board, mirror, stool and a few other items to pull our baby’s room together.


Also consider the following:

The size of the room.

This will dictate how many pieces of furniture you can fit in the room. Realistically, you will need a crib and a change table. Ideally two dressers would be nice, but this isn’t always visible, both cost and space wise.

The colour you will be painting the room. 

The colour you paint the room will dictate the colour or finish of furniture you select. White furniture goes well with pretty much any type of colour palette, so if you know this is what you’re going for then you won’t need too heavily on paint colours. For example, grey furniture with brown walls.

A theme you’d like to use when decorating (if any). 

Very similar to choosing furniture, a theme can also dictate what type of colour palette you will mostly likely gravitate towards. Think nautical or princess – I’m sure the colours that come to mind are blue and pink.

Your budget. 

Your budget will determine what products you’re looking for and where you will want to search.


Where we Shopped for our Nursery:

Crib – Leon’s

Change table/dresser combination – Leon’s

Glider – Baby’s Room

Mattress – Babiese R Us

Rug – Homesense (Queen West Trading Co.)

Stool – Homesense (Queen West Trading Co.)

Toy Bin – Homesense (Queen West Trading Co.)

Love you to the moon and back – Target

Hamper – Target

Storage baskets – Homesense and Winners

 

Happy mommying,

Jennifer ❌⭕️

Congratulations, You’re Pregnant! Now What?!

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Looking back on my pregnancy – it was both an exciting and scary time. Being a first time mother can be just that, scary. It’s the fear of the unknown. You want to share the news with everyone but at the same time have so many unanswered questions. You experience a bag of mixed emotions while all sorts of thoughts are running through your mind. “Is it too early to share the news? Will I make it past the first trimester? Am I actually pregnant? How will people react?”. Thankfully for me, I have sisters. Although both are childless, it’s nice to have someone to confide in other than your partner, because really, they’re most likely just as clueless and terrified as you are.

To help you through the intial shock of this overwhelming journey, I’ve prepared some tips below that will assist you with prioritizing your thoughts and honing in on what really matters. Keep reading as I’ve also included a list of things that can wait to be tackled and additional considerations that will serve you through your pregnancy.

What to Focus on NOW:

1. Clean up your diet (If you weren’t working on it before, now is the time to do it!)

I know, how is a newly pregnant person supposed to clean up their diet when all they want to do is give into those stubborn pregnancy cravings? Especially in the first trimester – cravings are a REAL thing. Not all women are so lucky though,  as many suffer from severe morning sickness (not just in the morning). None the less, it’s important for both you and your baby to establish good eating habits that will take you through to the end of your pregnancy. To me, this means including ample fruits, vegetables, fiber and protein in your diet. Limiting sugar, and anything “white”. Not too bad, right?

2. Begin taking a quality pre natal vitamin.

If your pregnancy was planned, you may very well already be taking a pre natal vitamin. This is great and gives both you and your baby a head start on your pregnancy. It ensures that your body already has all of the vitamins and minerals that are crucial to carry your baby through the next 9 months. If not, don’t worry – you can purchase prenatal vitamins from any drugstore (most grocery stores carry them as well). I personally used Pregvit for it’s higher dose of iron and would highly recommend this product if this is something you also lack. Remember to always read labels and follow the instructions provided. Most prenatal vitamins should be taken at the same time each day and often times on an empty stomach. This can cause some women to become quite nauseous. If you are one of them, I’d suggest having a light snack with your pill (any type of carbohydrate will be sure to tide you over).

3. Proper sleep and rest (let’s face it, after baby comes you won’t sleep for the next 18 years).

If you were never someone who woke throughout the night to use the washroom, you will be now. The first trimester and quite early on, will have you waking through the night and running to the washroom. The extra blood flow that your body produces as a result of being pregnant is to blame. Keeping this in mind, It’s crucial that you get ample rest and sleep well through the night. Your body is working hard and will be going through some major changes, that in itself can be stressful enough.

4. Contact your GP to make an appointment.

You’ll want to contact your family doctor to schedule an appointment. They will go through a routine check and take lots of blood work. To prepare for this appointment, you will need to know the first day of your last period. This will assist your physician with calculating your due date. Your doctor may also refer you to an obstetrician. This is also an excellent opportunity for you to ask any important questions you may have; so make a list of questions in advance of your visit.

5.  When you’re going to begin telling people and who.

This is something that is very personal and completely up to you and your partner. Often times it is said that after the 3 month mark is a good time to begin sharing your exciting news with friends and family. It’s a good idea to discuss this with your partner in advance so that you are both prepared, should you receive questions or are caught off guard.

6.  Download a pregnancy app like “BabyCenter”.

In the day of modern technology there are so many unique and amazing apps all about pregnancy. There are some that will calculate your due date and track your cycles, others that will track your growth and share with you how your baby is developing. By far my favourite is BabyCenter. It takes you through each week of pregnancy and shares developmental milestones. It also includes a forum where you can ask questions and connect with other moms who are due in the same month and year as you. It’s a safe place to reach out to others who are experiencing the exact same feelings as you.

What can WAIT (although extremely fun):

  • Shopping for clothing
  • Researching the latest baby products
  • Decorating the nursery
  • Buying baby furniture
  • Setting up a registry (for a potential shower)

You may also want to CONSIDER:

  • How your work schedule could affect your pregnancy. Do you have morning sickness? Do you work shift work? Have a long commute? A lot of things can come up mid pregnancy and having a back up plan or peace of mind is always comforting. You may want to make arrangements to work remotely or save some vacation time for days when you have medical appointments.
  • How long you plan to be away from work. It’s important to make arrangements for your maternity leave. Will you take a full year off? Will you take vacation time prior to your leave? Will you continue contributing to a pension? Although these decisions seem trivial, it’s a good idea to start considering them early on.
  • Reviewing your finances. This is always a tough one. By nature, many of us tend to avoid numbers at all costs. However, It’s important to begin planning for the additional costs associated with a baby. Have an idea of your monthly bills and create a budget – there are tons of free templates available online. The last thing you want to worry about when you’re trying to enjoy your new bundle of joy is money!

 

Happy mommying,

Jennifer ❌⭕️