What love looks like to me

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

I just sat down, at 9pm on a Tuesday night, to write a post that was intended for yesterday (whoops) about what love looks like to me.

Would you like to guess what happened the moment my mind turned to the topic and my hands began to move towards to keyboard?

The baby woke up screaming.

So, here I am, telling you what love REALLY looks like in real-time.

Love looks like a tired-mom not fulfilling commitments in blog-land because her kids needed her more often than not and there wasn't enough time, after getting the kids to bed and trying to spend a few minutes with her husband, to write an insightful, or any, post about what love looks like.

Love looks like a husband (in this exact second) trying to calm and change a squirming, screaming baby while his wife tries to do anything other than parent or clean for 5 min.

Love looks like trying, calmly, to talk your tired and somewhat belligerent 4 year old through an outburst and telling her you love her even though she just yelled at you for a solid 30 min.

Love looks like instantly forgiving your 2 year old for throwing his entire dinner to the dog when he oh-so-sweetly says "sorry mommy" as his picks the plate off the floor and hands it to you.

Right now love looks like me trying not to be irritated that my husband just opened the chips I bought for myself because he's eating them while holding the baby who just wants her mom but dad is trying to let said mom have 5 min to herself.

Love looks like late nights, middle of the nights, early mornings. Love looks like no sleep and coffee until there's wine.

Love looks like getting irritated and frustrated and wanting out but then not getting out because when you think about where you really want to be it's with the people who sometimes drive you the most crazy.

Love looks like feeling like you can't stand another second but feeling like it would be the end of the world if you couldn't, in fact, do this for another second.

Love is the ultimate contradiction and juxtaposition. It makes no sense but all the sense.

Love looks like a quickly written and sloppy blog post by a exhausted mom who is going to relieve her also tired husband from baby-duty (and take back my bag of chips for Pete SAKES!!) because I get that he needs a break too.

Love doesn't always look the way we thought it would. It is NOT a fairytale with prince charming and angelic children but that doesn't make it any less beautiful.

Love is love and this is it.

Happy Valentine's Day... I hope your busy lives are filled with so much love today and everday.

cross your fingers that by the time you're reading this post, we've all gotten a few hours of sleep lol

baby duty awaits ;)

What I'm wearing Valentine's day

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

It's Wednesday and I'm blogging!! Try not to faint with shock.

I haven't done a Wednesday post because I haven't both worn something cute AND been able to snap a decent pic. Sure, I've had a few outfits (you know, on the few occasions I leave the house and actually do something) that were kinda cute, but I wasn't organized enough (or had enough time without one of the three children hanging off of me) to get a pic. Don't let the previous sentences fool you into think this post is going to contain great quality, child-free pics, guys, that's just not my life.

So, with the Valentine's theme in mind this week, I'm sharing my go-to Valentine's outfit AND makeup!

Let's start with makeup (yay).

I LOVE makeup.I have always loved playing with makeup but don't always have time to really "do" my makeup. Often it's the minimum which for me means filling brows, mascara, tinted moisturizer and, of course, my LipSense. This is all good and fine for an everyday look but I love to take it up a notch whenever I have the opportunity (mostly because there aren't many opportunities lol). 

Pre-kids, I used to go out often and that meant a full face of makeup which included false lashes. I love false lashes because they make me feel quite glamorous and my natural lashes leave something to be desired. Plus, false lashes are a fun and easy way to jazz things up or add a little va-va-voom, especially to your Valentine's Day or date-night look.

I was sent some Esqido mink lashes to try. Before I tell you my thoughts, you need to know that I get offered products regularly and don't post a lot of review/sponsored posts anymore unless it's something I genuinely want to try. I could not ignore the opportunity for some new lashes (and for any excuse to find a place to wear them lol).

First of all, I'm in Canada so things often take a long long long time to get to me. These lashes did not! I got them so fast! Like two days after they were sent (WHAT?!). Now, that was like December and I'm just writing the review now, why? Because, as I may have mentioned, I don't get out much lol

I see a difference, do you see a difference?

I think the before and after kind of speaks for itself.

I chose the "Radiance" Esqido mink lashes and was also sent the eyelash glue. I chose the "Radiance" ones because I felt they looked kinda natural. My goal with lashes is for them to be noticeable but not like "WHOA", ya know?

As you can see from the before and after above, you can definitely notice a difference with the lashes on but it's not so dramatic that you couldn't pull it off for most events (including the baby shower I attended and SuperBowl party (aka "This is Us" party) that we had.

Aren't they pretty? Even from the top down it's not obvious I'm wearing lashes but they look gorgeous!!

Even my mom was like "you look great, I love your eye-makeup" but couldn't pinpoint what was different until I told her. Goal achieved!

My thoughts? I loved these lashes!! I also love that they're reusable (I've worn them twice, both times with ease). I have tried many (MANY) false lashes in my days. There have been a few different glues that have bothered or irritated my eyes and I'm happy to report I had absolutely zero issues with the eyelash glue from Esqido. The application was very easy for me and I liked that the glue didn't take too long to dry and wasn't noticeable once dry. The lashes feel very light (I've worn some heavy lashes and can't handle the weight) and natural, both attributes essential for this makeup-loving momma.

They often have buy one set, get the second 50% off and if you're a lash-loved, I'd highly recommend grabbing a set (or two)! Plus, if you order now you'll have them in time for Valentine's Day!!

And now... the outfit.

Well, this mom will likely be doing a dinner at home once the kids are in bed because who wants to volunteer to watch 3 kids? Anyone? Bueller? So comfort is key but that can be done kinda cutely... right?

I love this Addy Poncho I recently got from Stella & Dot. It's soft and cozy so I feel like I'm wearing pajamas but don't look like I just rolled out of bed.

Don't mind the socks, we don't wear shoes in the house in Canada (well, most of us don't I think) and the boots I wore in the snow aren't exactly fashion-forward lol. Also, my mini-me was insistent on getting in on the action, obviously.

You all can just pretend you don't see the baskets of unfolded laundry in the background, um 'K?

Stella & Dot selling tops is going to be the end of me (or rather by bank account). I have the maroon one in the middle below and I think that would also make a great night-out outfit too! Don't tell Mr. B, I have that top but have yet to wear it. D'oh! Again, anyone up for babysitting? 

Link up below and share your outfit posts with my friends and I at the Blended Blog!! Can't wait to see what you're wearing!

TBB Asks - all about love

Monday, February 5, 2018

HELLO FEBRUARY!! Where did you come from?

Fleeting time aside, it's another monthly edition of TBB Asks and for February we're answering about all things love-related.

Here's goes:

  1. Kisses or Hugs? Hugs for sure.
  2. Candy or Flowers? I love flowers and never get them (and probably eat too much candy) so flowers for me!! I also don't get flowers often (unless I buy them for myself) so they're that much more special when I do... and again, I get candy (for myself) far too often lol.
  3. Baking or Cooking? I really do love both. I'll have to say I like baking just a tad more but doing anything in the kitchen is fun for me. The best part? Eating whatever I've made!!
  4. Do you remember your first kiss? Um YES! Grade 6 (young, I know) at the movies watching Benny and Joon (I feel old now).
  5. Favourite colour of roses? I don't have one that I LOVE more than all the rest. I'm just happy to get them lol. Husband - you getting the hint yet? Get this lady some FREAKING FLOWERS. Moving on...
  6. Conversation hearts, yes or no? To play with, yes, to eat, no thanks.
  7. Do you leave love notes? No, and now I feel like a jerk. Note to self: leave love notes! If it helps, when my kids are old enough to read, I think I'd totally leave notes... maybe, if I have time... and can find a pen.
  8. Do you decorate for Valentine's Day? No. I wish I was one of those cute, put-together, crafty moms who decorated for every holiday but sadly, I am not. Christmas is the only holiday that gets decor around these parts. Maybe one day...
  9. Red or pink? I love pink!
  10. Milk, white or dark chocolate? Dark!! I LOVE dark chocolate. Also, since I'm currently dairy-free (thanks Lillian) there are actually a bunch of dark chocolate treats I can still eat!! YAY!! I have NEVER liked white chocolate.
  11. Do you believe in love at first sight? No. I believe you can be instantly attracted to and have chemistry at first meeting BUT I think real love is built over time.
  12. Do you give humourous or serious Valentine's Day cards? Usually funny with a mix of "I love you so much" lol
  13. Favourite chick flick or romantic movie? PS I Love You. I just love that movie so much. It's such a beautiful love story and also a major cry-fest.
  14. Stay in or go out? Well, we will be staying in over here and "celebrating" with 3 kids lol. I'd rather go out but that's not in the cards this year. I should also note I'd rather go out on a day that is NOT Valentine's Day because it's INSANE everywhere. I would much rather do something at home for Valentine's Day, including kids, and then have a special night out with my hubby on another night.

Here's what's going on in February around these parts (and the Blended Blog)

Mondays in Feburary:

New series starting this month called "let's hear it from the girls" - check it out, feel free to link up with us - I'm also accepting guest posts if anyone is interested!

Link up your TBB Asks posts below!! Can't wait to read your answers

We want to hear from YOU!

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Do you have an anecdote you want to share?

An experience to relate?

A funny tale?

A hard thing that's still happening?

Something on your heart?

None of the above but something burning to be in print?

Yes please.
My Blended Blog buddies and I are launching a new series and I would LOVE for YOU to be part of the conversation!

Here are the details:

Each week will have a different topic, if you’re feeling extra wordy, feel free to submit for more than one theme.

FEBRUARY & MARCH 2018- Fostering Strength

Now until Feb 9: Call for submissions

Feb 12 - 16: A Portrait of Love: Talk about what love looks like to you.  Be creative. Here are 3 examples of very different versions of the post- you can really go anywhere with this. Glenna-Jordan-Sara

Feb 19 - 24: Watch Embrace (available to rent on Itunes- Documentary, Gravitas Ventures) and create a post using one or some of the questions in the discussion guide (here)- tell us what you took from this film.

Feb 26 - Mar 2: Affirmations and self-talk: share your tips, what do you do to build up your confidance? Life hack survival tips: What do you do well that helps you get through life? See an example of a post here.

Mar 5 - 10: I’m *insert your age here* and I tried it : any fun trends you want to share that you’ve tried? Or that you’ve been dying to try and just need that little push ? Have you accomplished something that you are really proud of? Here’s an example of what Abbie tried at 35.

Mar 12 - 16: 20, 30, 40, 50, 60 somethings.  Talk about this period in your life and what you’re going through.   Here are a few examples: JodiRenee

Mar 18 - 23: A woman you admire: tell us about the/a strong women/woman in your life.

Mar 26: closure and intro to April and May topics
Our goal is to reach out to our reader community because we know there are some great voices out there with stories to be told.  Please pick one or a couple of topics that interest you and prepare a guest post and email it to me (shaunacey@gmail.com)

I will include a bio of your awesomeness and your words. I'm sorry to say that I'm not paid so neither will you be but I would love to promote any links you have to your amazingness and send you free hugs. You don't have to be a blogger to participate!

Not super-desirable in this series...
1. Posts that sound like "do it my way 'cause it's the right way."
2. A blatant advertisement for a business (mentions are fine!!).
3. Meanies. You know who you are.
4. More than 7 swears per line. Ow, my ears.

To sum up, in the words of of the lovely Malyn, "I was never at the cool mom table but we made our own table and we're all invited."

You in?

Email or message me on Facebook or Instagram if you've got a great idea or an already formulated post!

You do NOT have to a professional blogger/writer/person. You do have to be yourself.

Can't wait to hear from YOU!

P.S. I may not be able to use all of the submitted posts depending on the amount received but I hope to publish as many as I can and THANK YOU for your time and submissions.

Fashion, food, fitness and friendship goals (aka "all the Fs")

Monday, January 29, 2018

So I've shared my goals for 2018 already but I'm not sure I hit on these topics specifically so here goes:

I am on maternity leave until October 2018 (thank you Canadian Government, no, really, THANK YOU. Having so many American friends and family, I am so grateful for this) so my goal for most of 2018 is to GET DRESSED. That simple. Get out of pjs. So far, so good. I make a point to get dressed do something with my hair or makeup most days just because I feel better when I do. In reality, I don't leave the house much (aside from picking biggest up from school) but it's more about how I feel. My outfits often consist of a tunic and leggings but again, I'm okay with that at this stage of the game. In short: keep getting dressed and try and do something hair/makeup-wise BUT I'm also being kinder to myself this year, so if these things don't happen every.single.day. I'm not going to cry about it.
How: just do it - hair/makeup as soon as I get up (before the day starts or it doesn't happen). Get dressed before going downstairs (or, surprise, it doesn't happen). I've been good at this, I think I can keep it up.

mini me and I heading out for a mommy-daughter date - it's entirely possible she's the more stylish of the two of us. Okay, she definitely is.

Well, lucky me, baby #3 means no dairy AGAIN (did that with baby #2 and YES, I'm being sarcastic, I could eat a brick of chedder with a side of brie followed by a package of goat cheese... in case you're wondering). You'd be surprised to know how poorly you can still eat even when you're not able to eat all the dairy (if you take away the cheese, the majority of the McDonald's menu is dairy-free - not that I've researched that... or whatever). I need to do better with what I eat and not because I want to weigh ____ lbs, but because I'm not eating the way I know I should be.
How: make a freaking meal plan. Need to do this. Every week. Also, prep all.the.things. I always eat better when healthy food is readily available to me.

I should be eating a lot less of this (burger has no-cheese - see what I mean? dairy-free does not equal healthy lol but so so so so good). Pretend you're not drooling, I dare you.

MOVE IT! I shared on Instagram recently that I took my FitBit off the day I was induced with Lillian (Oct 10, 2018) and haven't put it on again since (until Jan 24th) and I told myself (and others) that the reason for that was because I didn't want to hurt Lillian while holding her BUT the REAL reason is that I didn't want to know how little I was moving or be accountable for that. The good news? Day 1 of wearing my FitBit and not moving ANY more than normal, I did almost 10,000 steps!!! WHAT?! So not nearly as bad as I though (by like 7,000 lol). Now, to tone up... ugh.
How: wear FitBit. Do other stuff. lol

this past week (before I came down with the flu - ew) - first non-yoga workout post-baby. I almost died.

Surprisingly, I actually do have some friendship goals for 2018 one of which includes meeting up with the Blended Blog crew in South Carolina in October!!! LOOK OUT!!!
I also want to spend more time with some friends that are very dear to me (you know who you are) and have a couple friends who I adore and need to spend some time reconnecting with (assuming they'll have me lol).
How: schedule friend-dates.

Link up your goal posts with us below (I'm super nosey and LOVE reading what other people are up to)

Email Schmemail

Monday, January 22, 2018

If you blog, you know that the holy grail of blogging is the email list. At least, that's what "they" say. So I obligingly created an email list and guess what I did with it? Come on, guess.

Well, those of you who "subscribe" to my email list already know, nothing... I do nothing with it. That's probably why people keep subscribing, they know I'm not spamming the crap out of them.

SURPRISE, I am actually going to send an email. This is not a drill. I'm going to send an email soonish (because, well, you know I'm not awesome with timelines and my kids have me super non-committal these days).

What's this email about you ask? Well, I may be asking YOU to contribute to my wee space on the internet. No need to have a blog, be a famous writer or any of that, just maybe have something you'd like to share.

So, moral of the story/blog post: you want the goods, sign up for my email. The good news is, you will not be spammed with daily emails, because, well, I have no time for that.

Sign up below if you want on the list, if not, no worries :)

Also, if I happen to turn into a super-organized, daily-blogging, email-writing/spamming monster (this is highly unlikely) there's always the unsubscribe button (I use it alot, I won't lie).

Subscribe to our mailing list

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the importance of self-care

Self-care, that thing we all know we should be doing and could ALL be doing more of. Ya, that.

As a social worker, I know A LOT about self-care and it's something that I'm very quick to tell people they need to do more of but guess what? I'm not always the best at taking my own sage advice - whoopsie.

I'm a mom of three (still so weird when I say or write that lol) and I'm busy, VERY busy. There is literally always something that needs to be done or a little person that needs my attention. So there my attention goes - to doing all the things and taking care of all the people. The problem with that is that I'm the first one left behind. I get so busy making sure everyone else is taken care of, that my own care gets put on the back-burner. What happens when my own self-care is constantly last priority? I get GRUMPY!!! Not only am I grumpy but I also have less patience and am not fun to be around which results in the people I'm so busy taking care of being less happy. It's a vicious cycle one that can be stopped in its tracks when I just TAKE CARE OF MYSELF TOO!!!


Okay, not so easy but it NEEDS to be made a priority. YOU, ME, WE need to make ourselves a priority and what I'm learning is that it doesn't mean a trip to the Bahamas (though, sign me up for that please - I'll need a sitter, you in?) and it doesn't need to take up a lot of time or money (but if you're throwing either of those around, over here please) it just needs to happen.

Not only does it need to happen, it needs to happen every.single.day. Sometimes for me it means a hot bath with a glass of wine (and the door locked because: kids). Sometimes it means a hot yoga class. Sometimes it's as easy as a few extra trips around the block once I've picked my oldest up from school while I sip my coffee/tea in silence (well, kinda silence, Paw Patrol is obviously playing on the DVD player otherwise I'd be listening to the kids - I'll take it).

So friends, my challenge to you is every single day this week get very intentional about the ways you're taking care of yourself. I don't mean looking back saying "well, I read my book for 5 min, that counts" I mean BEFORE the activity saying "I am doing this for me" or "this is my self-care activity". Bonus if you do more than one!!

big list self care activities
To help (because I'm nice like that) I'm sharing my most popular post with my Big list of self-care activities - there's something on this list for EVERYone not matter how much time, money or energy you have.

link up your self-care posts with me over at the  the Blended Blog below