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olympic moms

Lessons from the Games: Olympic Moms represent all of us

fitness, grow, LIVE, play, self By August 30, 2016 No Comments

I don’t know about you—but my body is definitely not the same since I gave birth. Sparing the gory details, let’s just say that some parts are not where they once were. So, for that reason (among many others), I was blown away by watching the Olympic champions competing in Rio de Janeiro this year…who also happen to be moms.

“How do they do it?” I ask myself. These moms prove that women aren’t past their prime after producing life, instead they highlight how powerful moms are by competing and excelling in the Olympic games. I figure, perhaps it’s because of how powerful we have to be every single day. I mean, let’s be real: women who can withstand childbirth can break records in any endeavour we set our minds to. We can achieve all of our goals and make our dreams come true, because we’ve already faced the greatest challenge: kids.

Sandi Schwartz

Sandi Schwartz

Sandi Schwartz is a freelance writer, editor, and researcher specializing in parenting, wellness, environmental issues, and human behavior. She enjoys analyzing everyday life using science, humor, and a passion to improve the world. Her blog www.happysciencemom.com provides a parenting toolkit for raising happy, balanced children. To learn more about her work, please visit www.sandischwartz.com.

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me too parenting

Me Too Parenting: A Trip to France with my Daughter

grow, LIVE, nourish, play By August 1, 2016 No Comments

There’s more to me than being a mom. Or at least, there used to be. I had a kick-ass job in which I got to travel the world and into dangerous countries. I have been to Iraq, Afghanistan, Qatar, Oman, Russia, Colombia, and further afield. I’ve lived long periods of time in France and Germany. I speak French quite well. I know how to shoot guns and how to (basically) survive in the woods. (I wouldn’t really want to test those skills, but I’d like to think if the Zombie Apocalypse ever came upon us, I could kick ass and take names with the best of them.)

But I might have been the only person in my life who cared about those things. My new mom-centric world consisted of helping my son complete his 30 Day FREE Coding Challenge, getting snacks and more snacks for my daughter, teaching my youngest how to swim, separating and referee-ing arguments, monitoring screen time (and did I say getting snacks?) These somewhat mundane tasks, added to housework, meal prep, and so forth, left me with little time for me. For remembering who I was and exploring who I would or could still be.

Alexa Bigwarfe

Alexa Bigwarfe is a freelance writer and author. Alexa co-authored the book "Lose the Cape: Realities from Busy Modern Moms and Strategies to Survive" (losethecape.com) published in Spring 2015 and then edited the follow on anthology: "Lose the Cape: Never Will I Ever (and then I had Kids!). Her #losethecape philosophy as a mom is based on the idea that we are all doing the best that we can as moms, and should be encouraged in motherhood. She also edited and published a book for grieving mothers entitled "Sunshine After the Storm: A Survival Guide for the Grieving Mother" and has been published in several anthologies, including "The Mother of All Meltdowns," and "The HerStories Project," and "Mothering Through the Darkness." She also writes for regional parenting publications and has published over 30 articles in the United States and Canada.

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Costumes from Alice

Alice Through the Looking Glass Costumes and Decor

LIVE, play By July 28, 2016 Tags: , , , No Comments

While at the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration, I had the honour of not only hearing from Suzanne Todd, Producer of Alice Through the Looking Glass but also being part of the second audience to ever screen the film.The empowerment of women reigns throughout this technically magnificent spectacle. As a former actor, it’s difficult to imagine acting in front of blue screens with only red X’s on which to direct your gaze. We saw Mia Wasikowska (Alice) filming her scenes and I was in awe at how she had to create scenes inside her head in order to find her reactions to events without another human being feed her their lines or emotional expression. We also got a peek at Alice Through the Looking Glass Costumes in real life.

Jill Amery

Jill Amery is a mom of 2 small boys and the Publisher of UrbanMommies, a stylish digital lifestyle magazine filled with fitness, style, health, recipes and savvy mom advice to help you through pregnancy, birth, and raising your kids.

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central park playgrounds

NYC’s 5 Best Central Park Playgrounds

FAM, kids, LIVE, play, ROAM, USA By July 26, 2016 1 Comment

Nearly everyone who comes to New York City makes a point of visiting Central Park. It is, quite literally, the heart of Manhattan, and any guide to NYC will direct you to explore this green oasis, which is so full of wonders, it can make you feel like a kid again.

But for those of us with actual children in tow, sometimes you just need the relative sanity of a fenced in playpark, where you can sip a coffee while the youngsters burn off some energy. For us, some of the greatest gems sprinkled throughout Central Park are the 21 different playgrounds—all 100% free, open from dawn to dusk, many of which have been renovated by the Central Park Conservancy over the last few years. As a resident of Manhattan since my children were two and three years-old, I’ve done some serious investigation of at least two-thirds of those parks and have whittled down my favourites to these five Central Park playgrounds.

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Netflix StarWars

Star Wars on Netflix – More Options than EVER

EAT, LIVE, play, snacks By July 18, 2016 No Comments

Attention padawan learners and Rey fans everywhere! Fancy seeing more Star Wars on Netflix? Members in Canada are now able to stream Star Wars: The Force Awakens along with the last days of the Galactic Republic with the entire Clone Wars series and feature film. Because it is summer vacation, after all, and there are many, many lessons in Star Wars. (You may want to watch it a few times…).

Jill Amery

Jill Amery is a mom of 2 small boys and the Publisher of UrbanMommies, a stylish digital lifestyle magazine filled with fitness, style, health, recipes and savvy mom advice to help you through pregnancy, birth, and raising your kids.

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summer to do list

The Go-To Kids Summer To-Do List

grow, LIVE, nourish, play, rest By July 6, 2016 No Comments

We look forward to summer break at our house.  It is a time when we cut down on activities and well… just, “be.” It never seems to fail though, a week after school lets out, the kids are complaining about being bored.  My co-author and her kids came up with a list of ideas to do at their house. This isn’t a list of intricate crafts, projects or extravagant destinations—it’s a simple list. In fact, it’s a list of things that quite often, I forget are an option.

Checking off a couple of her list items, I realized that it’s easy to do fun things with kids, because all they want is our time. If we are there, present, in the moment and playing with them, they’re happy. So I decided to make a second simple list of some of the greatest things that you might consider doing with your kids this summer.

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bad sports

Bad Sports Aren’t Bad Kids

play, Unpopular Mom By July 5, 2016 10 Comments

“Your child’s success or lack of success in sports does not indicate what kind of parent you are. But, having an athlete that is coachable, respectful, a great teammate, mentally tough, resilient, and who tries their best is a direct reflection of your parenting.”

Oh, just shut up. Really.

I’ve seen this sign crop up more than a few times in my Facebook feed, and every single time I think: listen, you sanctimonious super-parent-slash-sign-maker—you are wrong, and you’re not helping anyone.

Let’s think about it, for a moment. Kids come in all shapes and sizes, and are blessed with all manner of abilities and personalities. No two children are alike, and yet, if for some reason your child is not quite coachable, respectful, mentally tough….the list goes on, then you have failed?

That’s what this sign is telling me.

I call bullshit.

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Mom’s Away: How to be a Better Mom by Travelling Solo

eat, grow, LIVE, nourish, play, rest By June 11, 2016 3 Comments

It happens at some point for every mom and it was happening for me today, one and a half months before he would turn the big oh-two: the first trip away from my baby.

I’m a journalist and editor, so it’s been easy to find reasons to work from home over the past few years, scrambling to squeeze every workable second out of naps, evenings, and weekends—but when a press trip came up for Ann Arbor and my first choice writer couldn’t make the dates, I considered whether it was perhaps time to get back into the game and go myself—a mom’s getaway.

Lonelle Selbo

Lonelle Selbo

Lonelle spent the past 15 years hanging out on the masthead of some cool fashion and lifestyle magazines across Canada—before taking the leap into parenthood, at which point swaggy parties and fashion shows lost their lustre next to her golden-haired son. Immersing herself into a new scene, as the Editor-in-Chief of UrbanMommies, before moving on to launch her own country living + parenting magazine 'Life Au Lait', she loves putting her ear to the ground and listening to the rumble of mom voices. In between Oprah and bonbons, she also runs a boutique design and branding agency (AuLait Media) working with mom-driven businesses to help bring their big vision to life.

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stay-at-home mom

Stay-at-Home Moms Need Nannies Too

grow, LIVE, nourish, play, rest, Unpopular Mom By June 8, 2016 3 Comments

Stay-at-home mothers are lucky. We get to be with our babies full-time and witness all of the coveted milestones that make parenthood so special in those early days. We have unlimited time to spend with these tiny creatures who hold our hearts so tightly, and we are free from the guilt and anguish that so many mothers feel for sending their little ones to daycare. We don’t have to put on a suit and drag our tired asses to an office, tearfully kissing our little ones goodbye. And we don’t answer to anyone but our own children, who, in reality, are the worst bosses anyone could ever have. As temping as it is, we must not fall prey to the idea that staying at home with children is a leisurely endeavour—it is work, and yet, somehow, this job that nobody really considers a job, has been placed on the bottom of the totem pole. Yes, we are lucky, but this shit is hard and asking for support shouldn’t be anything to be ashamed of.

But, it is.

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drone

Best Father’s Day Gift: Tie, Socks…or a Drone?

Contests, FAM, holidays, play By June 6, 2016 Tags: , , , , , , 1 Comment

That time of year is upon us again, ladies, when we ask ourselves the age-old question: tie or socks? I usually like to go rogue and get him both but this Father’s Day, I want to think outside of the ‘workwear accessories’ box. My partner is a great dad and an incredibly thoughtful man; he does the things that I don’t even realize need doing, like restocking the fridge with cream for my coffee and making sure our toddler treat cupboard is well-stocked. And he is always ready when he knows I need a break, a few minutes to decompress. I keep these things close to my heart when I come home to his dirty socks on my living room table: because marriage, right?

Jennifer Pitt

I became a mother for the first time at 37. I know, I know – what the hell was I thinking? P.S. I also believe in eating the last butter tart while my husband is sleeping, because snoozing = losing. I also blog at www.mommiesdrink.com.

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