Favorite things

My Great Big (9 months #pregnantbelly big) New Mom Free Samples List

 

Hey NEW mom’s!

Remember that post I wrote about all those questions you’ll get asked within meeting a stranger for the first time while pregnant. So.. about those samples.

Below is a list of tried and true new mom samples that you need to sign up for. Share this list with everyone! You should sign up for these samples, get your friends to sign up for these samples for you and get your family to sign up for these samples for you! Get every one involved!

I’ve also included a list of samples that I personally did not sign up for, because I didn’t know about it when I was pregnant, so I’m not sure how good they are. If you signed up for them, please let me know in the comments below.

Am I missing any? Let me know if you have any questions with some of the samples that I did sign up for.

Not a free sample, but something super cool that I came across today. StickerYou has an option to make custom stickers with your kid’s name on it. Which is totally awesome to tag clothing, sippy cups and stuffed animals.

 

 

Note: StickerYou is one of my CJ Affiliates that I would with. Please check them out!

Free World Tattoos

Earlier this week, I may or may not have gotten a tattoo.

Sunday night, while we were watching The Amazing Spiderman on Netflix (I chose this movie because I love Emma Stone* for lip  syncing with Jimmy Fallon), I saw something on my Facebook newsfeed that caught my eye.

There is a new tattoo shop in Ottawa called Free World Tattoo. It’s a cute little shop and it’s just off Preston Street in Ottawa.

They have a new apprentice named Chris. Chris is huge Star Wars fan and is currently learning to tattoo outlines of silhouettes on people (specifically the ones on their Facebook page). It always amazes me how talented tattoo artists are to not only draw beautiful things on paper, but on people too.

Chris is looking for willing subjects to have one of these silhouettes done on their body for free. I’m not sure if there is any room left to book an appointment with him, but I would recommend calling ((613) 238-2059) the shop right away to find out if they have any availability. I think they had limited space available for this promotion.

Speaking of tattoos…

Recently, the Postcards from the Mothership wanted bloggy peeps to talk about tattoos. Here are my answers to her Q & A’s:

Are tattoos still risqué when the moms at the schoolyard pickup are sharing tattoo aftercare tips? Or do they still send out a negative impression in your opinion?

Oh gawd, I hope not. When I first started dropping my daughter off at daycare, I have to admit, I was a little conscience about showing my tattoos to the daycare providers. Not because I didn’t want them to think I was a “bad mom”, but because I didn’t want my tattoos to be their first impression of me. I think I’m pretty swell (thank you very much), but still I think some people still do have a negative impression about tattoos. People like to judge, it’s in their nature. So, I just wanted to avoid that all together and just hide them. Now, I don’t give a f**k. I think our daycare providers are pretty awesome and that they “get it”. So now I don’t hide them at all.

Are tattoos mainstream, or do they still make people judgy?

Both. I think tattoos are becoming more mainstream. Doctors, teachers and 60-year old moms (hi mom!) are getting them. I do think that there is still a stigma attached to them and I do think that people will judge, but if they aren’t judging you on your tattoos, they’ll judge you for something else (the car you drive, the daycare you chose, the clothing you wear).

I read the blog post that DaniGirl linked to on her blog. Have a read: Why it’s okay to have a baby, but not tattoos.

Do you have one?

Yes… a few.

How and why did you choose your design?

Most of my tattoos are to stamp a moment in time. Maybe I’ll make another blog post about them and why I chose them, but for now this is the best way to describe them.

Do you have any regrets about having – or not having – one?

Nope. Not a single regret and if I ever did, I know there are some great artists in the Ottawa area that could help me cover it or touch it up. I really do love all my tattoos.

Do you have any tattoos? Do you agree or disagree with my comments above? Let me know if you book an appointment with Chris! Help support a local artist!

Also, don’t forget to enter our giveaway for one of Lapeetz’s LAVISHY wallets!

 

 

 

 

*Lip Sync Battle with Jimmy Fallon and Emma Stone

CTV Morning Live – August 19, 2014

I was on CTV Morning Live Ottawa this morning to talk about my top maternity leave apps:

http://ottawa.ctvnews.ca/video?clipId=419291&binId=1.1487308&playlistPageNum=1

I will blog more about my experience later this week.

To read the original blog post “My favorite mom apps” click here.

 

Review of LAVISHY Wallets (from Lapeetz.com)

Pssst.. There’s a new Ottawa-based online store that just opened up and I need to tell you about it! It’s called Lapeetz. It’s an online store that mostly sells good quality and ethically made products, such as LAVISHY wallets, Dirkje baby wear and bohemian style purses and kid sweaters. You’ve got to have a look.

Lapeetz - Lavishy Wallets

The owner of Lapeetz was kind enough to let me try out a LAVISHY wallet so I could review it here. If you’re not familiar with LAVISHY wallets, LAVISHY is a Toronto based Canadian fashion accessory and design company. The company was founded in 2001. Since then, they have grown into this fabulous company that sells good quality animal-friendly vegan products (like these wallets).

Blue Bird Wallet

The wallet that I’ve been using for the past week is the stylish, faux leather, small blue bird appliqué wallet. I just love it. It makes me smile every time I pull it out of my purse. It fits everything that I would want to put in my wallet (cards, money, coupons, more money). It’s very functional and just the right size to throw into any purse (or diaper bag).

The LAVISHY wallets that Lapeetz is selling are very affordable:

$24.99 for the larger size

$19.99 for the smaller size

$9.99 for the coin purse

In addition to selling wallets, he is also selling LAVISHY luggage tags, coin purses and passport holders.

Have I convinced you on how cute these wallets are yet? Great! Do you want one? Yup! The owner of Lapeetz was kind enough to give me one of these fabulous wallets to giveaway to one lucky reader. We’re giving away the large peacock wallet. I love this one! Not only are peacocks in, the embroidery on this wallet is beautiful. Its thin design is great to fit in any size purse. It would also make a great birthday or Christmas gift for someone you love!

Peacock Wallet

This wallet features:

  • A funky embroidered peacock
  • 1 photo ID slot
  • 12 card slots
  • 2 sections for bills and recipts
  • 1 zipper closure for your change
  • Magnetic clasp

Please comment below and let me know what product you would like to receive for Christmas off the Lapeetz website to be entered into the giveaway. Giveaway is to open to all Canadian residents. Draw will be held on Saturday, August 23, 2014. All entries must be in by midnight on Friday, August 22 at 11:59pm. You will be contact by email if you win.

Not interested in entering the giveaway, but still interested in purchasing one of these products?

You can find Lapeeze’s products in-store at:

BUT if you visit Lapeetz online store and use the code: JENNYWEARSGLASSES You will get 20% off your entire order (coupon code is good until October 31, 2014).

Have any questions about the wallets or the Lapeetz, you can contact the owner here.

 

 

 

 

 

** I just wanted to give a BIG THANK YOU to Lapeetz for providing the above product to review, as well as giving me one LAVISHY wallet to giveaway to a lucky reader. The opinions shared are my own and are honest.

Back-to-Work Mornings

Daily clothing bags

I’ve been trying to find ways to help me organize myself, so that my weekday mornings aren’t as chaotic as I think they could be. Here are some things that I’ve done so far:

  1. Oatmeal bags: I use a Decosonic to make ½ cup plain oatmeal bags for breakfast. I also make small containers filled with toppings for my oatmeal. This week, I’m eating cinnamon raisin.
  2. Healthy snacks: I used the Decosonic again to make healthy snack bags for the office. So far this week, I’ve eaten rice cakes, popcorn and almonds. It’s working out quite nicely.
  3. Clothing bags (see above): I used large Ziploc bags to organize my baby’s clothing for daycare for the week. Each bag includes a onesie, pants or shorts, shirt and socks. I’m flexible for swapping something out, depending on the weather, but it’s really great to have something to start with.
  4. Slow-cooker meals: My husband is an excellent cook (I will be happily blogging about some of his meals later on). This week, he made a big pot of chili. It’s great and really healthy for lunch. We often make a lot of extra food and put it in the freezer until we need it that day.
  5. Pre-made coffee: Not a huge deal, but I find it helps when I pre-make the coffee in the coffee maker the night before. That way, when I’m all glossy-eyed in the morning, all I have to do is push a button and voila! Coffee will be ready soon!
  6. Coconut Oil: I like to use products that have multiple purposes, like coconut oil. I use coconut oil daily as a eye makeup remover and face/body moisturize. For more ideas on ways to use coconut oil, check out this blog post.

Coconut OilWhat do you do to make your mornings go just a little bit smoother?

Do you remember Raffi (@Raffi_RC)?

For those of you that are born in the 80’s, do you remember Raffi*? He sang songs like “Bumping Up and Down”, “Down by the Bay**” and “Baby Beluga”. Yeah. Right a bell? Saturday morning, there was nothing on TV, so searched YouTube on our Apple TV and found some awesome Raffi Playlists. Here are a few that I found:

I hope this makes your Sunday just a little bit brighter.

 

 

 

*Did you know that Raffi was an Egyptian-born Canadian singer-songwriter? Pretty awesome eh?

**Did you also know that there is a children’s book called “Down by the bay”? It’s only $7.95 at Chapters.

New profile picture

I have a super awesome friend that made this profile picture of me. I love it.

Just wanted to share it with all of you here, in case you missed it in my About section.

JennySquare

 

How to unwind after a long day

How to unwind

 

As I mentioned in an earlier post, I decided that I was going to try the new app Next Issue. So far, I’m loving it. With my 30-day free trial I have access to tons of great magazines. Today, on my commute to work, I flipped through the September issue of Rachel Ray.

Which reading this magazine, this Weight Watchers ad caught my eye. How to unwind after a long day. It got me thinking, how to I currently unwind? Now with new daily schedule, things have been pretty hectic lately, but once the baby is down, I feel like can relax again.

Here is a list of things that I do to unwind at the end of the day:

1. Eat a Real Fruit Coconut Popsicle. Have you tried one before, omg, so good!

2. Take a shower. Since I don’t have much time in the mornings to get ready, I take my shower at night. The good news is in the morning, my hair is dry enough to use my straighten. No blow dryers needed.

3. Check my emails, blog, Facebook, Instagram, etc… Catch up on all the social media that I missed during the day.

4. WINE! Enough said.

 

Welllll… I guess I do the opposite of what the ad says *sigh*. What do you do to unwind?


6 Great Desktop Backgrounds

Today was my second day at work and I’m doing my best to find cheap ways to make my new office my own. One easy and free way to make your office more “you”, is to update your desktop background. Here are a few great desktop backgrounds that I found on the Internet today:

1. Moritz Fine Designs Blog

 

2. Sugar Paper Designs

 

3. Moritz Fine Designs Blog

 

4. Happy Serendipity

 

5. Free HD Wallpaper Desktop

 

6. Think Outside The Cubicle wallpaper

 

 

My favourite mom apps

Over the past year, I’ve gotten to know my baby and my iPhone extremely well. We’ve always been close, but we got even closer while I was on maternity leave. I also noticed that I’m a great multi-tasker. Not only was I breastfeeding my daughter, but I was also searching the Internet to find out “why is my baby crying”.

Here is a list of my favourite apps that I used while on maternity leave:

1. My Pregnancy Today and My Baby Today – Both apps helped me a lot during pregnancy and helped me learn about my baby milestones. Cute cartoons would show up once in a while, which I found great to be great comic relief and the to-do lists they provided helped keep me on track.

2. Relax Melodies – Since she was 8 months, we have been using this app. I’m actually listening to “slow waves” right now through the baby monitor while I’m typing this. When we sleep trained our daughter at 6 months, one of the tools it says to use is white noise. While I was in Florida, her crib was next to a bathroom that had a fan. It worked great for those two months. It offered a light glow and the fan as a noise machine. When I got home from our trip, I didn’t have any sound machines that would go all night. After doing some research on Amazon.com, I came across this app. We had an old iPhone 4 that we weren’t using and decided to put the app on the phone, plug the phone in all the time and let it run. It works so well. It never shuts off, but you can set a timer if you want.  The best part, I didn’t have to spend $50+ on a noise machine, this app is FREE!

3. Candy Crush – Who isn’t addicted to Candy Crush? I certainly am. I’m not addicted enough to search for Candy Crush cheats, but I have paid .99 cents to get a few more moves to pass a level. Don’t judge. You’ve done it too!

4. Fisher-Price Giggle Gang – So we used this app mostly when we didn’t want the baby to fall asleep in the car, so that she could have a good nap at home. Our daughter was about 6 months when we started using this app. It was one of the only apps that would keep her attention long enough to keep her awake until we got home. Now I find she gets a little bored with that app, but it worked like a charm when it did.

5. Google Chrome – As mentioned above, a search engine app was key in the first few months of parenthood for us. I didn’t know what I was doing, I needed help. I searched for things like “why does my baby have goop coming out of her eye?” “Why is my baby crying?” “Does my baby have gas?” “How to stop a baby from crying?” and so on. It was extremely helpful. I don’t know how people did this in the olden days. 😛

6. Next Issue – If you’re reading this and now at #6 on my list, you’re probably a) a new mom b) a recent back-to-work mom or c) have a friend that is a new mom and plan to send her my list of mom apps for her to read. Next Issue is an excellent concept for anyone really. I have to be honest, I haven’t downloaded this app*, BUT I plan to tonight because I started work again on Tuesday and I finally have a few minutes to myself at lunch time to indulge in a good magazine. Next Issue is basically an all-you-can-read app for magazines. You know how magazines are normally between $3-$8 per magazine, well with Next Issue you can a basic subscription for $9.99/month or premium subscription for $14.99/month. This is a steal since you would probably end up spending more than that a month on 2-3 magazines, now you can have them all! Muahahahah. The best part?!? If you use this link, you’ll get a 30-day trial for free. FREE!

7. Instagram – While I was on maternity leave, I used Instagram a lot. I used it because I didn’t want to flood my Facebook with our family pictures, but did want to post a ton of pictures of our daughter to our friends and family that did want to see it. I currently use Instagram a little less for personal purposes and more for the blog these days. I guess that’s what happens when your little one turns one.

8. Netflix – Speaking of breastfeeding, we can’t forget our about pumping days. I actually really enjoyed pumping. I only did it a few times (which is probably why I say I liked it) and enjoyed every minute of it. Why? Because at that point, it was the only time of day that I had to myself. Our daughter was a terrible sleeper, so for the first three months, I actually had to sleep with her on me (bad I know, but you do what you have to do) and then beside me. We were attached to the hip (which I also loved)… BUT when I did want that alone time and I only got it when I had to pump. So, when it came time, I loaded up Saving Hope on Netflix, got my double breast pump ready and pumped away.

9. iBooks – I really enjoyed using iBooks on my iPad mini when I was in Florida. It allowed me to buy books and not have to lug around clunky books with me. Here are a list of books I downloaded on mat leave: The Best Homemade Baby Food on the Planet, The Sleepeasy Solution, Divergent and  The Husband’s Secret (which I still haven’t read).



* Update: Since I have written this post, I have downloaded this app and love it. I use it to read magazines on the way to work, to relax after the baby is down for the night and to browse magazines during my lunch hour. I really wish I had thought to download this app while on Mat leave.