Showing posts with label friday favorites. Show all posts
Showing posts with label friday favorites. Show all posts

Friday, August 5, 2016

Friday Favorites: Made in Canada

One of the benefits of having lived in so many different cities and countries is having the opportunity to discover local or regional brands that I didn't know about before.  I've found so many new and lovable brands since moving to Canada!
For my US friends, these are all available in the US too, either online or have stores popping up!

Some of my favorites are:

Petite Pehr is a Canadian brand started by two Moms that is also available in the states, but is ubiquitous here in children's shops.  They make a variety of adorable wares such as these fabric bins and wonderful crib sheets that we have and love.  But my favorite are their swaddle blankets.  The fabric is light and breathable, comparable to Aden and Anais, but they are more oversized and the patterns are wonderful.

Mini Mioche is a Toronto children's line that boasts modern baby and children's clothing in unisex patterns and colors that are eco-friendly and organic.  The fabric is so soft and wears nicely (even with a very active and messy toddler).  They do the best elevated basics. Our favorites are the harem pants and this little gown. Right now they are only brick and mortar in TO, but available in the US online!

Jewels and Aces is another Canadian favorite that I discovered is local to Toronto.  I'm smitten with all of the jewelry.  They are effortless, subtle pieces that are perfect for day-to-day. I squealed with delight when I saw the hand written note and beautiful paper; it just made me fall in love with this little shop even more.

Kit and Ace opened a store down the street from me and I have yet to walk by without wanting to meander in and spend some quality time.  The brand just gets me.  The clothes have the comfort and movement of athletic apparel but with street style.  The tees are all blended with cashmere and I promise they will be the most comfortable tee you've ever worn (I'm loving this one for being so flowy and nursing friendly)  And don't even get me started on how well merchandised the store is! They are starting to pop up everywhere, but they got their start in Canada!

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Friday, May 27, 2016

Picnic Favorites

The first warm day of the season has us packing our food and headed outdoors! It's safe to say that enjoying a picnic is one of our favorite family activities.
You'll find us many weekends in the summer having a picnic overlooking the marina in our little town watching the boats go in and out.  But usually it's just James Robert and I packing a picnic for the park and stopping to eat, read books etc. when he tires of the swings.  These pictures were from one such afternoon this week.

We received a few picnic sets for our wedding years ago that have proved to earn extra milage and over the years we've added gear that has helped make the process smoother.  It may seem like a bit of effort, but I can't imagine a better way to enjoy a meal together than al fresco. 

With Memorial Day weekend kicking off official picnic season, here is a round up of some of our picnic favorites:


Picnic set: I couldn't find the exact backpack that we have, but this is very close.  I love that it has everything you need plus space for food (or wine).  It is also a greener alternative to packing disposable plates and cutlery, which I like.

Blanket:  We have a few that we use, but the turkish towels you see in the picture are always in the car.  We use them for everything from beach towels to picnic and stroller blankets because they are soft, light weight and fold tightly to fit in a bag easily.  We got ours while in Turkey, but I found some similar here.  Or I adore this monogram picnic blanket from Mark and Graham!

Reusable containers:  We use the stainless steel containers for JR's lunches as well as picnics all the time and they hold up well and work beautifully.  I also love the little reusable sandwich and snack bags that you can find.  The ones at this Esty site are adorable.

Water bottles:  We've tried so many!  Our current faves are this one for JR and this one for me (it's just like S'well, but half the price)

A good hat: This one is James Robert's favorite and since we're always getting asked where we got it, I wanted to share here.

Hand sanitizer: Can't forget a little hand sanitizer for messes on the go.  

Friday, April 29, 2016

Friday Favorites: Feeling Frenchy

I may have returned from Paris a few weeks ago, but I've yet to take off my rose colored glasses.

The unmistakable joie de vivre is my most treasured souvenir.  But in an effort to keep a good thing going, these are some French-inspired things I am loving.  Perhaps you'd like to indulge your Francophile tendencies too!?

1)  If you love Garance Dore, and who doesn't, then you'll love her podcast.  Pardon My French is fun, quippy and fun to listen to if for no other reason than her accent.

2) This Instagram Account provides such a lovely portrait of Paris; I love to follow along and reminisce.

3) Petite bateau has many of their hard-to-resist basics on sale.  I enjoyed visiting their flagship stores, but love that you can get their items stateside too.

4) I brought home with me some new beauty products that I've become obsessed with; both are coincidentally rose scented.   And after some tracking down, I learned that you can get the body wash here (for my US friends) and here (for my Canadian friends).

5) This French Lemon Tart has been pinned to my must-bake file.

6) And for all my pregnant friends out there, this is the ultimate investment piece!

Friday, April 15, 2016

Pregnancy Favorites + A Prenatal Yoga Giveaway!

I'm a few weeks into the third trimester and feel like pregnancy stuck up on me.  One day I woke up and my belly had seemingly grown exponentially.  And even though this is the second time, I think I had forgotten that "oh-I'm-so-pregnant" feeling.  Funny how that happens!  This weekend I'll be celebrating baby boy with some family and friends and I feel so thankful to have made friends in Canada who have supported me so much during this pregnancy.

Being pregnant is such a beautiful and wonderful experience, but not without it's massive challenges. I know it's cliche, but having the support of a community of mamas far and wide has been what has helped me most (hello calling my own Mom everyday).  That being said, I've also found that the little things really can go a long way in making the nine month marathon most enjoyable.

For the past 7 months, I've been keeping a list a little list of my favorite maternity items.  Some are the same as my last pregnancy, but many are new and I wish I had known about them the first time around! Here are some of my favorites:

1) Tea has been one of my biggest pregnancies biggest indulgences.  A good rooibos, peppermint or this Wellness Tea are in heavy rotation.  I especially love this one because it is good throughout the day (despite the name) and very soothing. 

2) I wish I would have known about this bra from Cosabella the first time around.  The investment is worth it for a bra that is comfortable, pretty and wearable while pregnant and nursing.   If is so nice to not feel like you're sacrificing your femininity for function. It's so comfortable, I've slept in mine on many occasions. 

3) BabyList is one of my favorite discoveries for curating a baby registery/wish list.  BabyList allows you to pull items from any website and even ask for things like home cooked meals.  It is easy to use, has great guides and I was pleased that it allowed me to add things from both US and Canadian sites.    

4) Prenatal yoga was a wonderful part of my first pregnancy, but this time around, I struggled to find a class/studio offering prenatal at a time that worked for me.  I tried a few youtube videos and DVD's but didn't find anything I loved until I was introduced to Julie at Yoginology.  She has created an online community for expecting mothers and a course of downloadable prenatal yoga classes that I just love. Her teaching style and personality make you feel so supported even over a video. You can pick from 10 minute, 30 minute or 60 minute sessions and you can even download the classes to have access while you're traveling etc.  I wish I would have known about it sooner as they have been immensely beneficial to me in the past couple of weeks. If you're interested in winning a membership to the prenatal yoga classes and community, be sure to follow me on Instagram for a giveaway! 

5) I have tried to document this pregnancy as well as I did my first and these pregnancy milestone cards from Made By Joy have been one of my favorite keepsakes in doing so.  

6) Thank goodness for my snoogle.  Worth every single penny.  I was skeptical, but after sleeping without it last pregnancy, I can confidently say that this investment changed the comfort of my pregnancy more than anything else.  A comfortable, supported night sleep is such a game changer.  

7) At the beginning of my pregnancy when I still wasn't telling everyone, I especially enjoyed listening to the Pregnancy Perfect podcast.  It's inspiring and interesting to hear so many different women's stories of labor, delivery and motherhood.  

8) Peppermint essential oil was another one of those little things with big impact.  I found it to be one of the most useful remedies for morning sickness.  

9) Finding pretty maternity clothes can be a chore.  I fell in love with COS before I was pregnant, but was delighted to find that many of their clothes are easily bump adaptable.  It's a wonderful place to look for non-maternity but bump-friendly dresses, like this one.  I love that you can wear them after baby too. 

10)  Practicing self care is one of the biggest challenges as a mother to a toddler.  I find myself running around and being exhausted so much more this pregnancy.  Weather it's a nap in the afternoon or treating myself to a pedicure once and a while, taking time out for myself has been so important.  For friends who are local to the GTA, I wanted to share that my most favorite way to treat myself is by visiting La Fleur De France in Oakville.  It is by far the best spa experience I've had; Dalila and her sister made me feel so special and pampered, not to mention that they are so knowledgable about natural skin care and ingredients to avoid while pregnant.  The facial I had there truly made my skin glow.    

Friday, March 25, 2016

Nursery Ideas

I can't believe I'm officially in the third trimester of this pregnancy as of tomorrow!  And I think a bit of nesting has kicked-in because this week, I felt compelled to pull together some nursery ideas for baby boy #2.  He won't be in the nursery right away, but it's so fun to start dreaming and collecting ideas for when he is.

I have a lot of items that I'm going to reuse from James Robert's nursery (see it here).  The glider, crib and custom seersucker bedding are all things that were excellent investments the first time around that I'll happily be using again.  

We are in a new house and the room that is available to make into the nursery luckily has really pretty grasscloth wallpaper on the walls that are neutral and give a lot of texture.  I'm not going for a theme, but I am obsessed with Lullie Wallace and when I saw on her Instagram that she is doing a series of alphabet animals, my wheels immediately started turning.  

I love the soothing colors and movement in her prints and so that was a jumping-off point to add a few other things to the mix.  Here's what I've come up with so far!

 custom glider, ottoman, mirror, dresser, knobs for dresser, crib, crib sheets, art prints, salt lamp 

P.S.  I had to include the salt lamp in my planning; after reading Robin's review, I've been so excited to try one in the nursery, especially since they have a dimmer.  They are pretty and have such a nice function. Have you used one?  

Friday, March 18, 2016

Friday Favorites

Having a little bunny to shop for has only made Easter preparation more endearing.  I have loved curating a basket of goodies for the past couple of years.   I've started a tradition of adding a rabbit themed book (last year it was this one), a couple of Schleich animals and a Jellycat bunny along with the other little items.  I have so much fun picking out things for a kid's Easter basket!  

For fun, I'd like to imagine that the Easter Bunny is putting together a little basket for me too.  If so, these are the goodies I'd love to see make their way in the mix: 

A new pair of sunnies for the (hopefully) warmer weather ahead:
Springy nail polish from Essie's new collection, like this one:

A new addition to my book shelves; Patina Farm  looks like such a beautiful book:

A selection of Easter Candy from Squish Candies; literally the most incredible gummy candy ever.  With adult flavors like champagne and strawberry rhubarb, these are insanely good: 
The perfect spring perfume; I love all of Jo Malone's stuff and this one is wonderful layered or on it's own at this time of year: 
And maybe a cute dress to wear over this insanely growing bump: 

What would you want in your Easter basket?! 

Friday, March 11, 2016

Friday Favorites: Loving Lately

I hope you don’t mind me popping in more sporadically.   Truth is, I’d like to keep to a schedule, but I’m not sure that life will allow that right now.   And I’d like to stop by with updates when I can.   So all that to say, thanks for reading along to those who visit the site.   I may not be blogging as much as I would like, but having this outlet and the comments, friendships etc that have come from it are so wonderful- thank you!  

This week is a fun round-up of things I’m loving lately.  

I’ll be kicking off the weekend listening to James Hunter on repeat; I can’t get enough.  Go ahead, give it a click and tell me it doesn't make you smile!

I’m binge reading Circling the Sun .  I thoroughly enjoyed The Paris Wife which is by the same author. And although, I haven’t finished the book, I’m already giving it a hearty recommendation.  

I’ve recently discovered the PBS series, Call the Midwife.  Yes, it’s a bit heavy and some may caution you to watching it while pregnant, but I have been and find it so moving. 

Every time I go back to the states, I relish going to Target.  I always come back to Canada with a  favorite new goodie.  The Pacifica body oil is my new go-to for perfectly moisturized skin. I love the scent and the roll-on application. 
I can’t help but thinking about Easter already.  I get such a kick out of picking out things for JR’s Easter basket and thinking about an Easter menu which is always full of coconut (my favorite)!  Last week, I tested a recipe for coconut lover's rice krispy treats and it was a hit at the gathering.  It was so easy and so festive.  The recipe is here
image via bare feet kitchen
Happy Weekend!  xx

Friday, February 19, 2016

Friday Favorites: Gift Ideas For 3 Year Old Boys

We are within a few weeks of James Robert's 3rd Birthday! This year, he is so excited about the milestone- especially know that he understands it is accompanied by cake and candles (a boy after my own heart)!

I'm fairly certain that he is most excited about the celebratory nature of his birthday, but I can't help but corral a few items that I know he'll love too.  I'll save the nostalgia for another post, but until then, here are some gift ideas for little boys at this sweet age. 


1) This book is supposed to be as visually appealing for adults as it is wondrous for kids (thanks Christine).  We used to have a large map on JR's wall that he would explore endlessly; I think this book would be a fun way to track where Daddy travels. 

2) My niece received these blocks for Christmas and although she is a bit older, they proved to be a hit with the kids of all ages.  The fort building, knocking down play is endless. 

3) We are in the process of potty training. These big boy undies would be extra special  Made of super absorbent bamboo, they are training pants that look like the real deal- brilliant!

4) JR is as obsessed with our Nespresso machine as we are. He asks to make a fluffy everyday; I'd rather him hone his skills on this sweet toy.

5)  I don't know if I'll ever be able to get him out of the bath if we get him this fishing rod.

6) We are still in the throws of train mania- in fact, that's the birthday theme requested this year.  What's more prefect than a singing Thomas train?

7) Dress-up for boys is just as fun as little girls- something I'm thrilled about as Mom.  These animal masks/tails are adorable.

8) All summer long, we skip stones and collect lake glass by the lake.  These sorting and stacking toys would be a fun indoor replacement until it's warmer. 

Friday, February 5, 2016

Friday Favorites: Loving Lately

Time for another edition of loving lately! I so enjoyed all of your feedback on the last post like this, that I couldn't resist doing it again. Proving that sometimes it's the little things that bring the most joy, this is a collection of what that I'm loving lately:
Last weekend in Michigan we hit the 20 week mark!
Black knit top c/o Pink Blush Maternity
If I'm going to add something to my pregnancy wardrobe, I prefer it to be versatile, comfortable and bonus points if it isn't rouched (which, I think, extends the life of the garment to be wearable after the bump).  I was recently introduced to Pink Blush Maternity and added this very cozy black knit top to my maternity staples.  Check out their maternity stuff here or their non-maternity stuff here.  I especially love this top and these robes. And if you're interested in winning a $75 gift card to shop their site, find me on Instagram (@megan_leanderson) and enter to win.  I'll be picking a winner later today.

We recently got a Nespresso machine (talk about life-changing) and switched to using clear glass cups.  I've found that our old coffee cups were too big, and it is nice to see the drink through the glass. Nespresso sells a glass mug, but I don't like the handle as I find it's hard to hold (especially for little hands who like to drink fluffies).  Ikea has a look-alike that has a better handle for only $2 a pop.Win-win!

I finally updated my recipe index to a visual format.  I hope that this will make it easier to search and find new (and old) recipes to try and love.  It was funny to look back and see how my photography skills have changed over time!  Click the recipe tab at the top of this page to check it out.

These earrings from Fura + Tena have been in  my online shopping cart for a few weeks; I love their collection of stud earrings.  While my everyday pearls are still a stand-by,  I'm ready for something more fun and unique.  Wouldn't they be the perfect Valentine's Day treat?

I'm loving all the video tutorials about the Honest Beauty line and am intrigued to try some of their products, particularly the Magic Balm. It's supposed to be like an Instagram filter for your face, in real life.  I'm thinking a little natural wrinkle diffusion could be helpful right about now. Has anyone tried it before?

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend ahead! xx

Friday, January 29, 2016

Friday Favorites: Books About Becoming A Sibiling

Happy Friday!  We're hoping to take James Robert skiing for the first time this weekend.  I'm bummed that I won't be able to go with him learn how to go down the slopes with him, but I can't wait to see the look on his face when he goes.

Lately, we've been doing our best to help prepare James Robert for the massive changes that will happen when we bring his little brother home.  I do hope that all of our talk about it will help ease the transition and help him be excited for his new role.  I know he will be such a great big brother, but I also know it may be tough on him.

One of the most helpful things we've done is read him books about becoming a sibling.  We were lucky to receive some wonderful books from family and friends over the holidays, so I wanted to share some of our favorites.  Please do let me know if you have any others to recommend that we could add to the mix!


Friday, January 22, 2016

Friday Favorites for Winter Hair

This morning we are headed to our 19 week ultrasound- I'm on pins and needles with excitement and nerves to hear if everything with the baby looks OK.  My biggest wish is to just hear the doctor say the words healthy.  I'm also crossing my fingers and toes that they will be able to tell us the gender.  So, I hope to be back on Monday with an update!

In the meantime...when I find something that works, I can't wait to share it with friends.  And after 32 years, I think I finally figured out a formula for good hair days in the winter.

When the weather turns frigid, it just isn't an option to air-dry my hair like I usually would do during the summer.  I would prefer to remain low maintenance, but out of necessity, I found that this process is a time-saver in the long run.

I should preface these recommendations by admitting that I dread blowdrying my hair.  However, I consider the technique shared below to be 10 minutes well spent.  If I style my hair following this tutorial and use these products, I can stretch my blow-out for 3+ days (shhhh)! 
First things first, watch Marianna's tutorial.  I promise if it seems like a lot of work, after doing it twice, it will be like second nature.

To save as much time as possible, I like to put my hair up in this towel when I  get out of the shower.  It soaks up so much water and cuts the hair drying process in half.

I tried the mousse that she recommended and found that it had a lot of hold which provided volume, but weighed my hair down more than I'd like.  Therefore, I suggest using her technique with Aveda's smooth infusion instead.  When I put my front layer in the velcro roller (life-changing I tell you!) I like to give it a quick spray of the hairspray.

At the end, I finish everything off with a pea-size amount of the Redken Outshine. My hair stylist recommended this as a great way to tame the static that plagues hair this time of year and I love it.  It helps fly aways and doesn't feel heavy.
hair on day 3
And let's be honest.  One of the only things that I like about winter hair is that I can get away with wearing a cute hat which doubles as a great way to cover a few day old blow-dry.

Hope this works for you if you try it- let me know!  

Friday, January 8, 2016

Friday Favorites: Loving Lately

Happy Friday!  I have some non-pregnancy and pregnancy related things that have been brightening my days lately that I'm excited to share (and who doesn't need that when the days are cold and dark?)!

On a whim I watched About Time on Netflix and haven't been able to get it off my mind.  It's cute and quirky like the best English humor but also deeply sweet and sentimental about life prompting you to think about it for days after watching.  It didn't hurt that the song featured throughout the movie was the song that I walked down the aisle to at my wedding... I may or may not have had a few tears. 

This time of year, I'm all about tea.  Every afternoon, I look forward to a warm cup and have fallen in love with rooibos tea, in particular the Alpine Punch blend from David's Tea.  It is the best! It has notes of almond, coconut and ginger that make the smell just as divine as the taste.  I recommend it with a spot of milk and sugar.  

I don't know how (or why) I survived my first pregnancy without a snoogle.  I LOVE this thing.  I resisted it the first time because it is bulky and an extra cost, however,  it makes trying to sleep comfortably so much easier.  It is worth every penny.  

Michelle Adams is one of my favorite designers; I've loved every apartment and space she's shared since before Lonny.  But her newest Michigan home, featured in House Beautiful, takes the cake. Can I move in, please?!  I am busy taking notes on how she seamlessly blends blue and white with black and white.  

This past week, my Uggs ripped along the seam.  I'm hoping to get them repaired, but if not, I have been eying these Hobe shoes forever and think they would be such a cute replacement.  Don't they look ridiculously comfy and equally wooly?

Friday, January 1, 2016

Friday Favorites of 2015

Happy New Year dear readers!

365 days ago I felt so very unsure about what my life would look like. I was excited and nervous as we were packing up our home, saying goodbye to friends and prepping for Canada.

Over on our family blog, I committed to creating a monthly picture recap.  It was such a fun exercise and one that provided a wonderful way to review all that transpired.  The pictures tell the story so much better than I could.  The year was filled with the vibrancy of life's up and downs--there were trials and triumphs, love and loss, laughter and tears... and a lot of learning.

I look at these pictures feel so much gratitude for the experiences under our belt and the people in our lives who supported us along the way.

With the 12 months stretching before us, I feel excitement for the memories to be made.  I wish you all the enjoyment of reflection and anticipation that January first can provide.  May this year be your best yet!

Here are our favorite moments of 2015: