Today’s mom is versatile, bold and always beautiful inside and out. We’ve scoured cyberspace and sourced 10 finds that will send tingles up and down her spine. Please know that within our 2018 Gifts for Stylish Moms guide, there are some affiliate links included and purchasing through any of them help keep the site running – we appreciate your support more than you could know!
The start of September means different things for different people. For some, it means the start of another school year, for others it means the commencement of crazy schedules, and for many it means that winter is becoming increasingly imminent.
For me, September has always been a New Year of sorts. This is likely because I have spent almost my entire life immersed in the world of education; regardless, the end of summer seems to go hand-in-hand with new beginnings and September feels full of blank pages that are just waiting to be filled.
As a parent coach, I spend a lot of time with moms. More often than not, there is one common thread: She is overwhelmed, exhausted and feels locked into certain patterns with her kids.
Does this sound familiar to you?
It’s a very common story but it doesn’t have to be this way…
Have you ever had this interior monologue?
How can it be Sunday night already? Where did the weekend go? I’m so tired. I’ve got so much to do before I get to bed. Every Sunday night is the same and every Monday morning I feel like I’m starting off on the wrong foot.
There are few life events that are as exciting and meaningful as the arrival of a brand new baby—whether it’s your own darling smoosh or one belonging to someone you love. As happy as we are about these new little additions, picking a perfect gift for each baby shower can be a daunting task—mostly because you want to commemorate the occasion with a really great baby shower gift.
Sometimes, in my role as ambassador or influencer, I get to work with companies that truly make a difference in the world. This has always been really important to me, even before UrbanMommies existed.
Entering its 100th year, the Palliser is an icon – how I wish the figures framed on the walls could share their secrets!
We arrived during the holiday season and my son’s eyes bugged out at the stunning lobby displays. Then he saw the hand-painted cows used to fundraise for Ronald MacDonald House Charities, which UrbanMommies supports wholeheartedly. Moo-ing (of course) ensued and he was desperate to bid on a cow in the silent auction.
Opening the door to the room he exclaimed, “Now THIS is a good hotel room!” He then proceeded to jump on the bed and approved of the bounce. As a Fairmont President’s Club member, complimentary sneakers and workout gear in my size are automatically delivered to the room. One less thing to pack and worry about. Oh – and internet is complimentary as well.
The highlight of the whole experience was the gold floor lounge. At the top of the hotel, it mixed tradition with new cuisine and comfort. The hors d’oeuvres in the evening were not only kid-friendly, but delicious and healthy. My son was able to mix his favourite concoction of juices (in a wine glass) and grinned at the stunning view as snow fell in the heart of the city.
My favourite memory was teaching him how to play cribbage on an antique brass and wood board. After an successful outing to the Glenbow Museum directly across the street (they had exhibits on rocks and gems as well as military uniforms from all era which thrilled both of us!) we came back to the hotel and my son made a beeline for the cribbage board. We will forever be joined in cribbage and I will smile and think of that night every time I think of the Palliser.
Disclosure: UrbanMommies was not compensated for this review though we received a lovely welcome basket in our room. As always, our opinions are our own.
Remember those folks who said computers wouldn’t last and cell phones were a passing fad? Snicker. Not only were the naysayers incorrect, but our tech is now so mainstream and we have so many apps for our smartphones that we need experts to tell us about the true gems. In a special interview with Amber MacArthur, co-host of APP CENTRAL, she revealed her top 5 Holiday Apps for Moms as she gears up to celebrate a spectacular milestone: APP CENTRAL’s 100th episode on Wednesday, Nov. 20 at 9:30 p.m. ET on BNN and on CTV, Saturday, Nov. 23 at 5:30 p.m. ET/PT. 100 episodes! No wonder we need more storage in our phones. I was ‘appy’ as a clam as we spoke. (OK I had to say it).
Amber MacArthur’s Top 5 Holiday Apps for Moms
1. Santa’s Magic phonecall iOS – free Call Santa on demand
2. Appy Holidays – allows you to get you xmas lights on your tree to dance to xmas carols. Plug the Appy Holidays Box (Available at Canadian Tire, $59.99) into any tree and turn it into a musical light show! Download the app to your smartphone or use the remote (included) to control your tree’s tunes & make lights dance
3. Martha Stewart Makes Cookies – Holiday Baking app iOS – $1.99 A mouthwatering assortment of Martha’s favorite cookies is now available at your
fingertips! Learn from the best with this indispensable baking resource, which combines cutting-edge technology with beautiful design and a generous sprinkling of good, old-fashioned fun. With 6 recipe bundles, instructional videos, baking tips, packaging
4. Go Gift – lets you manage your gift list. iOS – $0.99
Thanks to quick reminders and gift status notifications, this is the best holiday app to manage your gift list. You can add photos of people on your list and gift pics to match.
5. Mixologist Drink Recipe App – holiday drinks and low cal drinks. iOS/Android – $0.99/$1.49
Browse and search through nearly 8,000 drink recipes and over 1,000 ingredients, including holiday and low-cal drinks.
So get downloading to make your life easier, and don’t forget to tune in to the 100th episode of APP CENTRAL as Amber speaks with James Milward, Founder and Executive Producer of Secret Location (CTV.ca’s INTERFERENCE). Milward discusses his new app, Tug of War on Drugs, which reveals the realities of the war on drugs in support of Matthew Cooke’s documentary How to Make Money Selling Drugs. Plus, the APP CENTRAL team tests the latest in waterproof smartphones and phablets.
Ahh. October. Just when you’ve eaten your fill of turkey, forked over a ton of cash for organic pumpkin pie ingredients and filled your house with harvest décor, you realize that Hallowe’en is only two weeks away. Or maybe one. (Your calendar is still covered in gravy splatter.) The turkey coma is replaced by the end-of-October panic attack. You create a list. Lists are fun! Until you realize that you have not one thing checked off yet.
– Costumes for the kids
– Candy for the door
– Extra candy for when you run out at the door
– Baking for the Hallowe’en party at school
– Decorations to make your home the spookiest on the block
– Rake, lawnmower, yard bags and Mums to tidy up the yard
– A costume for yourself so you can look like a rockstar parent in front of all of the other parents who come to the door (they won’t know you haven’t cut the kids’ nails in a few weeks)
– And along that line of thinking, cleaning supplies to make your front foyer sparkle (The rest of the house doesn’t matter)
And now I’m slightly stressed. But I do like to multitask and thankfully, was approached to try out the American Express AIR MILES Reserve Credit Card. I’ve held different Amex Cards for over 15 years and have used a ton of the American Express customer service extras and benefits (Front Of The Line for theatre tickets being one of my favourites) so I jumped at the chance. The company has been great to deal with. Over the years I have been phoned to check on irregular purchases, had cards replaced immediately when I’ve (ahem) lost them, and just last month, used the Amex Members lounge at the US Open to charge my phone and have my swing analyzed. So I’m a huge fan.
Currently, there is a promotion that if you enroll and spend $50 or more on you Amex AIR MILES Card from October 24 – 31, 2013 you can earn 100 Bonus AIR MILES reward miles.
All of the purchases I would be making anyway from my Hallowe’en list will earn me reward miles, and quite certainly also Bonus reward miles. (Because we all know about my family travel obsession.) Any flight or hotel that doesn’t dwindle the bank account makes me smile again and again. I know there are tons of travel reward cards out there as I’ve used many of them. The American Express AIR MILES Reserve Credit Card p is quite different than most.
1. You can use your reward miles to cover taxes and fees on flight redemptions, and no blackout dates or zone limits means I can control my own travel decisions.
2. There are choices in the Card I choose based on my needs (and which I think will look chic in my wallet.) No need to stretch the budget or change existing spending habits (apologies to my poor husband).
I chose the new Reserve Card for myself and feel the $299 annual fee is well worth the benefits.
1. I earn reward miles twice when shopping at participating AIR MILES Sponsors across Canada using my new Credit Card combined with my AIR MILES Collector Card.
2. AIR MILES has introduced FlexFly Redemptions, meaning with this card I can access additional airlines and destinations, departure times and seats not within the AIR MILES Flight Program.
3. Complimentary companion ticket for a short-haul flight once annually
4. Access to an AIR MILES concierge service (loving the sound of that)
5.. Four passes to Priority Pass airport lounges worldwide every year. If you’re wondering about the benefits of this while flying with kids, we did an article on it. [link] Of course.
6. Emergency Medical Insurance (Out of province/country), $100,000 Travel Accident Insurance, Car Rental Theft and Damage insurance, Lost or Stolen Baggage Insurance, Flight Delay Insurance, Baggage Delay Insurance, Hotel/Motel Burglary Insurance. Because I know all of you moms pay really close attention to insurance policies. (This can eliminate the stress of not reading stuff unless it’s about fashion).
- How you Earn reward miles:
- Earn 1 reward mile for every $10 in Card purchases at AIR MILES Sponsors
- Earn 1 reward mile for every $10 in Card purchases at other eligible grocery stores, gas stations, and drugstores in Canada
- Earn 1 reward mile for every $15 in Card purchases everywhere else
The other Amex AIR MILES Card options:
The American Express AIR MILES Platinum Credit Card:
1. $65 annual fee waived for the first year
2. Reward miles are earn at the same rate as with the Reserve Card
3. Car Rental Theft and Damage Insurance and $100,000 Travel Accident Insurance
The American Express AIR MILES Credit Card:
1. No Annual Fee
2. Earn 1 reward mile for every $15 in Card purchases at AIR MILES Sponsors and 1 reward mile for every $20 in purchases you charge to the Card everywhere else
3. $100,000 Travel Accident Insurance
Is your stress dwindling too? Or already dreaming of your dream destination? Psst. You can take the extra Hallowe’en candy with you. Wink.
Disclosure: This article was generally sponsored by Amex AIR MILES. As always our opinions are our own.