Friday, July 1, 2011

Winner - Tropical Traditions Natural Soaps! has picked a winner for the trio of natural, organic soaps from Tropical Traditions:
Congratulations to
Thanks to Tropical Traditions for sponsoring the giveaway! Check out their site for lots more natural and organic products, from food to household products and skin care.

If you haven't entered yet, there's a new giveaway up there on the left for some treats from Life Choices, Canadian healthy and easy food (Canada only). And stay tuned for more giveaways to come!

Happy Canada Day!

Happy 144th birthday, Canada! What are your plans to celebrate this long weekend?

We are going to the festivities on Prince's Island here in Calgary, with live music and other entertainment - then later watching some fireworks.

In between - well, what better way to celebrate Canada Day and some nice summer weather than a barbeque? We're all heading home for some yummy cheese (veggie) dogs, corn and salad. We did a trial run earlier this week (never enough nights for barbeque in the summer). Remember the Wonder+ Simply Free buns I told you about before? They are now our go-to buns for veggie burgers and dogs. The classic fresh-baked taste you expect from Wonder, without any additives or weird chemical ingredients. They're delicious!Mmmm.

Maybe you noticed the little sticker on the bag of buns in my picture? You can enter to win a BBQ party worth $5,000 through a unique PIN found on specially marked packages of Wonder+ Simply Free hotdog and hamburger buns! Very cool contest!

They also have added eight more new barbeque recipes to the Canadian Living, Summer Fun Comes Naturally site. I think the Pineapple Meatball Skewers look pretty yummy (with vegetarian meatballs, of course!).

And you can learn a little more about your favourite outdoor appliance at the Canadian Living website, in the Summer Fun Comes Naturally section: “Learn How to Build a Better BBQ”, and “The History of Barbecuing in Canadian Culture”.

I hope you have a fun Canada Day!

Disclosure – I am participating in the WONDER+ Simply Free program by Mom Central Canada on behalf of Weston Bakeries. I received a gift card, BBQ kit and free product coupons as a thank you for my participation. The opinions on this blog are my own.

FYI – I'm happy to try the product for free and receive a gift card for my time in writing about it, but I want you to know - I don't promote products that my family wouldn't use or products that go against my grain. These new products by Wonder, to me, are a step in a very good direction for a big company. This IS the product I look for in the grocery store.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Life Choices - Giveaway!

***This giveaway is closed***
Winner: Anne-Marie!

If you care about where your food comes from and what's in it, and want some quick and easy meal options for your family, check out Life Choices.

A Canadian brand (based in Toronto), Life Choices has a mission to make family-friendly, healthy foods such as Pizzas (family size and mini), Mac & Cheese, Meatballs, Chicken Fingers, Fish Fingers and Pierogies. Being vegetarian, I like that they have vegetarian-friendly (and even vegan or glucose-free) options. I am also impressed by the fact that they care about the environment and use sustainable practices including organic foods and sourcing locally. Life Choices has been "Making the Right Choices Easy" since 2002. I find their products in the natural foods section of my local grocery store.

Print a coupon from their website to get $1 off any Life Choices products, or you can
enter to win a Life Choices prize pack right here!

The giveaway:
A Life Choices insulated lunch tote (kids can draw on it!), 3 boxes of Mac ‘n Cheese, 3 $1-Off Coupons, as well as 1 Free Product Coupon for any of the Life Choices products. ARV $25.

How to enter: Follow @lifechoicesfood on Twitter (leave your Twitter name!)* Make sure I've got a way to contact you if you're the winner!

Extra entries (please leave an extra comment for each. If you already do any of these things, leave the comment - you do get the entry for it!):
  • Subscribe via email to the bi-monthly Life Choices eNewsletter, which includes expert nutritional information, fun recipes, and lifestyle tips. (sign up on the bottom of their home page)
  • Head over to Life Choices and let me know one of their products that you'd like to try, OR one thing that you learned there.
  • Follow me on Twitter (leave your Twitter name!)
  • Tweet about this giveaway for ONE entry, this is not a daily! You can use this if you like:
    Canadians, #Win a healthy, natural food prize pack from @LifeChoicesFood at Emily's Latest @emilyisland 7/13
  • Follow my blog (publicly) – 2 entries, leave 2 comments
  • Add my blog button to your blog– 2 entries, leave 2 comments (please leave a link to your blog)
  • Blog about this giveaway, linking back to this post and to Life Choices – 2 entries, leave 2 comments and please include a link to your post
I will be verifying comments so please actually do the things you say you do ☺ If you already do any of these things, it still counts for entries!

Please be sure to include your email address if it’s not public in your blogger profile! Anonymous comments without a way to contact you will be rejected. Canadian mailing addresses only, please. Giveaway ends July 13th at 11:59 MST. A winner will be drawn within a few days, announced here, in a separate post and emailed!

Prize will be shipped by sponsor.
* the mandatory entry was changed 06/30. Entries previous to this change who completed the original mandatory entry were accepted.


It's official: we are renaming our baby Gigantor. At Mia's four-month appointment, she weighed in at a whopping 16 lbs, 14 oz (birth weight was 7 lbs 13.8 oz), and measured 69 cm (27.2") long and 42 cm (16.5") around her head. She's in the 98th percentile for her age and rocking 6 month size clothing (which she will no doubt grow out of soon). Just for the record, neither my husband nor I are big people - we're pretty average.

As for me, of the 60 lbs (!!) I gained while pregnant, I've lost 51. I am dying for the last 9 to go away... but apparently not desperate enough to want to do any actual work to lose it, or give up eating... I miss my relatively flat belly, though. Fitting in to my pre-pregnancy jeans is still just a fantasy. I haven't given up hope, and refuse to buy larger clothing, so I haven't shopped in a year or so and the wardrobe is getting kind of desperate. I've heard the body retains the last few pounds while nursing and it's extra hard to get rid of... I'm using that thought to reassure myself these days!

I've never needed to really think about my weight that much. I've been one of those lucky people who stays around her optimum weight without a whole lot of effort. I started hitting the gym when I was 25 or so and I was always able to maintain a good level of fitness without working too hard at it. But now that I'm in my mid-thirties (ugh! they totally snuck up on me) and I've had the baby, and going to the gym seems to require scheduling around my husband's work, baby care and my low energy from lack of sleep, it's on my mind. I've been twice since Mia was born, which means twice in the last 7 months, as I wasn't going after 6 months pregnant... no wonder.

I know I am doing well, relatively - I try not to compare myself to others, but it's hard. At my mums' group, we're all soft mummies, some softer than others - and I'm on the less fluffy end. But at the cottage last week I was side by side with my sister-in-law, who is amazingly fit, not to mention nearly 10 years younger than I am, and childless - and I felt doughy and out of shape. If that wasn't incentive enough to lose these last pounds, I don't know what would be.

I hate not being able to wear the vast majority of the clothes in my closet, whether it's because they don't fit (shorts and jeans mostly) or because they're not nursing-compatible (tops and dresses). Boo.

When I was at the mall the other day with Mia, a woman came up to me and asked, "What formula do you have your baby on?"
"Formula?" I asked, bewildered.
"Yes, you know - Similac, Enfalac - which one?"
"OH!" I said, "None, she's breast fed."
"Ohhhhh," the lady said and walked away, looking slightly confused.

Weird, right? My husband thought it might be a generational thing (she was in her 50's/60's).