My Apologies to My Friends Who Don't Have Children

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Having a baby changes your life and also the relationships that you have with the people around you. It makes you sympathize and bond with your fellow moms over how it's possible to survive on so little sleep and it unfortunately, can also distance you from your friends who don't have children. I can't say that I blame my friends... I once upon a time didn't have a baby and found it really hard to relate to what my mom friends were going through. I would try to have a conversion with my bestie M. and every 10 seconds was interrupted by: L put that down, L stop jumping, L stop running in the house! Fast forward a few years and our conversations now go something like this:
-Hey M! How are y - Zane don't eat the dog food! - what was I saying? 
-I'm good... tired, busy the usua - L put that down! Leave your sister alone! - what was I saying?
-You were telling me I think about your day yesterday? I don't really remem - Zane stop french kissing the dog! Omg M gotta go. Zane is playing in the toilet.

Mom life changes EVERYTHING. I've teamed up, once again, with my mom friends and we've come up with a list of apologies for our friends that don't have children! Feel free to add your own in the comments below: 

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1 - I'm sorry I was an hour late to your birthday party  - to be honest.. my son threw up all over as I was heading out the door and you're lucky that I showed up at all. You should in fact be buying me a gift. Have you ever tried to wake a baby up from a nap and then show up at a party smiling? Why is your party at 9am anyways? Don't you know this is NAP TIME. 

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2 - I'm sorry that every time we go out I'm always wearing black yoga pants - it's really because no other pants fit me and the black really camouflages all the food stains from my child throwing his dinner at me. Tonight we ate cheerios for dinner because i just couldn't deal.

3 - I'm sorry that my child bit you/hit you/threw something at you - I really am trying to teach him. Listen - if you think you can do better, take him for a day and try. Actually maybe a week. I could use some sleep. Please?

4 - I'm sorry I forgot your birthday/anniversary/first day of work etc. - I run on 4 hours of sleep a day and I can't even remember my own name most of the time, so just be thankful I remember who you are. You really are important to me and I promise one day I will get my shit together and start checking my reminders on my phone... if I can only find it... my son was playing with it somewhere. Speaking of which... were is my son? 

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5 - I'm sorry I had to cancel our plans last minute because the baby was sick - I promise this isn't an excuse. They put everything in their mouth and are sick every week. I would much rather be sitting and having a glass of wine instead of sucking out boogers from my baby's nose (for those who don't have kids - yes this is a thing... and yes you will have to do it. Have kids they said... it'll be great they said.)

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6 - I'm sorry I left your party early - I know I said it was because the baby was going to have a melt down, but I was the one who was ready to snap and felt it would be frowned upon if I started crying in the middle of a crowd of strangers. 

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7 - I'm sorry I can never make it to dinner with my kid unless we eat at 5pm - Kids are assholes sometimes. Especially tired ones. If you want to have dinner at 7pm and want me to bring my son, that's fine. But know that there WILL be a melt down. And my son's screaming is comparable in volume and pitch to a beluga whale so EVERYONE will stare. We might even end up on YouTube when he starts catapulting the food across the restaurant. I'm down if you are... I've been through it all and have no shame anymore. 

All in all, my life has changed... but I promise I'll find that balance again... or a really good babysitter that's always available. I love you and miss you and still treasure our friendship so please wait for me to find my way. :)

 

DIY Mother's Day Handprint & Footprint Gifts

We LOVE DIY crafts (well I do at least... Zane loves to play with paint - so it's a win-win) and what better time to make one than Mother's Day? All moms LOVE DIY crafts from their kids and even more so from their grandkids! Zane and I got to work and created the most adorable gifts for his Grandma and Great-Grandma this Mother's Day.

DIY NOVELTY TRAY AND PIGGY BANK

Start of with finding the pieces you want to decorate. Make sure to thoroughly clean and let them dry. Some materials are more porous and will need to dry over night. This step is SUPER important. Often ceramic and porcelain products are covered in a film or dirt and the paint won't properly stick unless it's clean. 

Choose your paint colours. We used the paint below and bought a thinner because I didn't want it to go on too thick. 

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Optional: Paint Brush - You'll need one if you decide to write something on the jar or piggy bank (such as the date, your child's name etc.). I also used a thick paint brush to paint on my son's hands and feet. You could also just mix the paint in a bowl and press their hand/foot in it.

Once your tray is clean and dry, map out the design you want. You want to know EXACTLY where you're putting your mini's hand or foot once it's covered in paint because it won't be fun trying to keep them still if they're younger. I recommend doing this project with someone else so that one of you can place the foot or hand in paint and make the print and the other can stop your baby from crawling away covered in paint. 

Follow the directions on your ceramic paint. If you used the same one as I did, let it dry overnight, then bake for 35 mins at 150 degrees. Then it's ready to package and send off!

Tips: Definitely find a place to date your artwork. It's always nice to look back and see when the art project was made. I definitely recommend doing the hand print before the decorating because it's the hardest part. I needed to wash off my son's handprint several times before getting one that was perfect and the rest of the design would have been ruined had I done it first!

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Happy Crafting! I would love to see the artwork you create so don't forget to tag me in your posts! @mrsnewmommtl

 

xox Tovah

 

Drugstore vs. High End Makeup - Is There Really A Difference?

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I've always wondered whether the big priced tag attached to some of my favourite brands of makeup really was justified. I'm by no means a product junkie, so I decided to go to someone who is and put some makeup to the test! I spent the morning with Amanda from Lashes Lips N Liner (follow her on Instagram for your daily dose of makeup heaven and product recommendations) and we did a quick makeover using drugstore brands on one side of my face and high end makeup on the other. Surprisingly, when I asked you all on Instagram which was which, the majority of you spotted the difference! I'm going to cover which products we used, which Amanda thinks are comparable and which she absolutely thinks are worth the extra investment! We went for a super quick and easy every day look and will be covering some tips and tricks next week!

Click here to follow Amanda on Instagram!


 BEFORE - NO MAKEUP

BEFORE - NO MAKEUP

 AFTER! MAkeup by Amanda left side: Drugstore brands ($43) right side: High end brands ($158)

AFTER! MAkeup by Amanda
left side: Drugstore brands ($43)
right side: High end brands ($158)

These are the products we used: 

Correcter/concealer: Pixi by Petra ($17) vs Benefit Boi Ing ($30)
Blush: Annabelle ($8) vs. Burberry ($50)
Mascara: L'Oreal Voluminous Mascara ($6) vs. Urban Decay Perversion ($32)
Brow Gel: Essence Make Me Brow ($4) vs. The Brow Gal ($22)
Lipstick: Rimmel by Kate ($8) vs. MAC ($24)

Drugstore Total: $43
High End Total: $158

Over all, the only 2 products that Amanda really recommends spending a bit more on are the Concealer and the Lipstick. You can see in the picture that my dark circles aren't as well concealed by the cheaper brand (and we know that as moms we need all the help we can get covering those bad boys)!

The lipstick is also worth the investment for a few reasons: 
#1. The feel. I could IMMEDIATELY feel the difference. The more expensive lipstick felt nicer on my lips
#2. The smell. The cheaper brand had a more plastic and synthetic smell.
#3. The wear. The cheaper lipstick will run and will not last as long. 

Stay tuned next week for our 5 product - 5 minute makeover! 

Click here to follow Amanda on Instagram - she offers tons of product recommendations, unboxings and product hauls and TONS of makeup advice!

Neutrogena To The Rescue This Summer!

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I got my hands on Neutrogena's MUST HAVE products this summer and am thrilled to say they don't disappoint.

Light Therapy Acne Spot Treatment : Ok so this is the coolest product I've seen all year. It uses red and blue light to treat acne without any discomfort! It's portable (it is literally the size of a pen), it's quick (the treatment takes 2 minutes) and it's affordable. This is totally my must have product this summer for those hot days and the blemishes that often accompany them! Click here to get more info.

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Deep Clean Micellar Water and Makeup Remover: BEST feature of this product, hands down: It removes waterproof makeup! This had me jumping for joy. I am obsessed with micellar water but I haven't been able to find one that removes waterproof mascara and waterproof sunscreen which leaves me struggling in the summer for something that works. I am so happy to have discovered this just in time. It smells divine, is gentle on my sensitive skin and doesn't leave a residue behind. OBSESSED. Click here to learn more.

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Hydro Boost Gel Moisturizing Sunscreen Lotion: The first thing I noticed was the smell - it smells heavenly and not like a sunscreen at all. It goes on so smoothly, doesn't leave a white residue behind, is SPF 50 (no sun spots for me!!) and a little goes a long way! I also love that it's a gel cream - it has the most incredible texture. Click here to learn more!

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Deep Clean Purifying Micellar Cleansing Wipes: These 3 in 1 wipes are perfect to throw in your purse, gym bag or work bag for a quick midday cleanse and makeup touch up during the hot sticky summer. I love that it targets impurities and removes makeup and cleanses without needing water! Click here to learn more.

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Hydro Boost Multivitamin Booster with Hyaluronic Acid: This serum can be used on it's own or added to a moisturizer you already have for added moisture and radiance. It helps to energize and brighten the look of your skin with Hyaluronic Acid and a Multivitamin Complex!  I will definitely be adding it to my tinted moisturizer because my skin needs all the hydration it can get after being out in the sun. Click here to learn more.

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If you're looking for a few new additions to your skincare routine, I totally recommend one of the above products! Let me know what you think of them in the comments below!

xox Tovah

Review of the Mountain Buggy Nano

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Certain things you only learn to appreciate once you have a 25 pound child - and one of those is a great quality light weight stroller. I was SO excited to get my hands on the Mountain Buggy Nano. Not only is it less than half the weight of the stroller I used to use, but it also fits a diaper bag underneath, folds up in to a storage bag for travelling AND reclines so that your mini can sleep while you take over the world! Most light weight strollers force you to compromise on functionality - but not this one!

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I never knew until trying out the Nano that you could have all the perks of a larger stroller, but in a compact version (and for a fraction of the price!). Some of my fave features include: 

1. Reclinable seat: most light weight strollers don't have adjustable and reclinable seats so it makes it difficult for your minis to nap. The Mountain Buggy Nano Fully reclines and you can see that Zane thoroughly enjoyed his mid day siesta :).

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2. UV protective canopy: The Nano has a retractible out sun hood with UV protection, making it the perfect accessory for summer time strolls.

3. Compact and Lightweight: it folds up with the push of 2 buttons and fits into a sleek carrying case (that is included - no extra purchase necessary #win), making it the perfect flying, travel and road-trip companion. I love that it doesn't take up my entire trunk when folded up and it still has a compartment on the bottom for a baby bag. When it's in the case, there is also an accessible handle, making it a breeze to carry through airports.

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Have you tried the Mountain Buggy Nano? Did you know they just released a Double version? So all you mamas with 2 kids - you can now benefit from the same awesome features too! Click here to see more pics and learn more about this light weight and super practical stroller!

Discovering Boppy

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Walking into baby stores is so overwhelming at times and with so much available online it's so hard to decide which baby products to try and trust! That's why I LOVE being able to test out new products and brands and give you guys the low down on what I think! This month I'm putting Boppy to the test. First known for their pillows, Boppy was created by a fellow mama (so we know these products were designed for parents) and they now have an extensive line of baby items that range from nursing pillows, to carriers, to teething scarves and even pregnancy pillows! This month I'm reviewing their new ComfyFit Baby Carrier and their Teething Scarves

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First up was the ComfyFit Baby Carrier. I'm going to be honest and say that I have never been a fan of baby carriers. I've always found them to be uncomfortable for my back, Zane hates them, and 99.9% of the time I can't figure out how to put it on properly, so I was a bit skeptical about trying out another one (I already own 3 that are all nicely packed away in a storage bin). I AM THRILLED TO ANNOUNCE that not only did I figure out how to put it on in under 10 seconds, but Zane was smiling AND it is the most comfortable carrier I've ever put on.

I am so disappointed that I didn't know about this carrier sooner. It comes with a super practical storage bag, is made from a super soft and stretchy material and it can accommodate your mini forward facing or rear facing. Putting it on is SO easy. There's a snap around your waist, you slide in your arms through 2 holes (that are labeled "right shoulder" and "left shoulder" = SO EASY) and you tie the hanging pieces around your waist. That. Is. It. I LOVE the colour, am obsessed with the fact that my husband can wear it too (and figure out how to put it on alone) and am so happy that Zane is now as comfortable as I am when using a carrier! I totally recommend the ComfyFit Baby Carrier.

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 I borrowed one of Zane's delicious girlfriends for this photo shoot!

I borrowed one of Zane's delicious girlfriends for this photo shoot!

Next on my list from Bobby was their Teething Scarves. I was intrigued when I saw this product online because Zane loves chewing on my face, my jewellery, my arms, shoulders, shirt (you get the point), so the idea of having a scarf that was meant for him to chew on seemed like a genius idea! They come in 4 colours (to match every outfit) and not only does Zane love to chew on them, but the fact that it's around my neck means he can't toss this teether on the floor which is a total mom win. We've all been out at a restaurant with a teething angry baby and then they decide to catapult their teether on the dirty floor... this happens to me daily. With this teether, it's around my neck, is super cute and helps soothe Zane's gums! Click here to visit the Boppy website to check out their Teething Scarfs. 

 Little baby Ruby couldn't get enough :)

Little baby Ruby couldn't get enough :)

If you've never heard of Boppy, I totally recommend heading over to their website to discover their entire product line. I love supporting fellow moms and this brand won't let you down with their innovations and quality! 

White Chocolate and Pecan Scones with Hamilton Beach's Professional 14 Cup Dicing Food Processor

This weekend I busted out the ULTIMATE tool: the Hamilton Beach® Professional 14 Cup Dicing Food Processor and got baking with a good friend of mine :). If you've been looking for the perfect gift idea for Mother's Day.... look no further! This machine does it all: it dices, slices, shreds, kneads, chops, mixes and purees. Seems too good to be true... right? Well I put it to the test with homemade scones - and spoiler alert: they were DELICIOUS, so easy to make because of Hamilton Beach's food processor, and took under 30 mins from start to finish!

My fave feature of Hamilton Beach's Professional 14 Cup Dicing Food Processor is that it's really quiet... much quieter than the others out there. It also comes with a super practical storage box to keep all the accessories organized which means no searching through my mess of a kitchen drawer to find them! But the best... the blades, bowl and lid are all dishwasher safe #mom win. It would made a great gift for Mother's Day... or for yourself :).  This recipe, from start to finish, took 30 mins thanks to this food processor that can do it all! 

What you'll need to make the most delicious White Chocolate and Pecan Scone Recipe (taken and slightly adapted from geniuskitchen.com)

Ingredients:
2 cups flower
1/3 cup sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/3 cup salted butter
1/2 cup milk
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla
6 ounces white chocolate
3/4 cup pecans

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  • Cut up butter into cubes and put in the freezer! (this will help your scones stay fluffy and airy)
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  • Remove the slicing blade and add the kneading plastic blade
  • Add in flower, baking powder and pulse until mixed
  • Add frozen butter cubes and pulse until blended. Do not over mix. You want the mixture to remain lumpy and the butter cubes to be intact. 
  • In a small bowl, mix together the milk, egg, and vanilla and add to the flower mixture - pulsing again until mixed. 
  • Add the white chocolate and pecans and mix again until evenly distributed. **You want the mixture to remain lumpy (like the picture below... it will ensure airy and fluffy scones!!! DO NOT over mix.)
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  • Remove mixture and knead the dough on a lightly floured surface until it is approx 1.5 inches thick.
  • Cut into desired shapes!
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  • Bake scones for 11-15 minutes - or until lightly browned on top! 
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These scones are sure to please anyone you have over for Mother's Day brunch! They were so easy to make thanks to Hamilton Beach's Professional 14 Cup Dicing Food Processor! I can't think of a better Mother's Day gift than this! It's a must have in every kitchen!

Best Wooden Toys Under $20

If you follow my blog then you know I love children's wooden toys and the ones we have are among Zane's favourite.  I've rounded up the best on Amazon for under $20! Let me know if you have any other amazing finds that should be added to my list! Click the image or product links below for more info :)

Promotes hand-eye coordination and concepts of colour and size.

Colourful skill-building toy for toddlers and preschoolers. Promotes hand-eye coordination

Promotes hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills

Promotes colour and shape recognition and problem-solving skills.

Promotes hand-eye coordination, counting, sorting, colour recognition, and problem-solving skills.

Promotes colour recognition and hand-eye coordination.

Improves fine motor skills and colour and shape recognition

Great for hand-eye coordination and imaginative play

Features numbers, letters and pictures to identify for vocabulary-building

Brightly colored, smooth-sanded pieces help build early shape, color, and size differentiation skills

Promotes counting, colour recognition, fine motor skills, and early math skills.

Learn the theory of balance through balancing the scale and train your baby's hands-on ability

Encourages counting, sorting, pretend play, and an interest in food and nutrition.