April 25, 2017

Books We're Loving

*affiliate links have been used

Confession time: I haven't been reading much at all these days. Like, I've read half a book so far for the month of April. January started out really strong, with 4 books read, and then my reading progress just piddled away from there. I can't even really explain it, but I'm just not reaching for a book when I have time to read. Blame it on being too tired, focusing on other hobbies right now, or just lack of interest in reading. Perhaps a combination of all three even, but however you look at it, my reading is severely lacking so far. That being said, the books I have managed to read at least have been really good reads! There's nothing worse than reading bad book after bad book, especially when you aren't reading very much to begin with. 
Great Books You Must Read
Loved: The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry was such a charming and lovely book. The writing was beautiful and it hit me with all the feels when I was least expecting it. It's about loss and love and family and how when you least expect it, the right people (both young and old), will find their way into your life. And it's a book about books, so what's not to love? 

It Ends With Us was also a really good read. A little more chick-lit and a lot more sexy times than I was expecting, but I had a hard time putting this book down. I was worried that the ending was going to be too cliche, but I think the author approached a difficult topic really well. I don't want to give anything away, but the message this book sends is really important and be sure to read the author's note at the end!

The last good book I read was The Lost Husband. If you've read any of my last book posts, then you know I adored Happiness for Beginners by the same author so I was excited to dig in to one of her other books. I wasn't disappointed in the least! This is a book about loss, moving on, forgiveness, hope, love and self-growth.While I couldn't relate to having lost my husband, I could relate to being a mother, and I just really liked the main character, Libby. She was honest, real, and just trying to live a good life in order to give her children a better life. 

Currently Reading: I had high hopes that I would read all of the books while on holidays in Florida, but alas, that never happened. I started reading Forever, Interrupted by Taylor Jenkins Reid while on the airplane and devoured 150 pages. I was pulled in on page one and crying by page two. But, despite loving it, I haven't been able to bring myself to read anymore (see first paragraph again, haha!). Anyway, my goal is to finish it by the end of the month! 

Looking Forward To: I feel like this is a trick question, haha! I can't say I'm looking forward to reading anything right now, BUT, I do have two books I recently purchased that I am really interested in reading as soon as I find my reading mojo. Ange highly recommended Unf*ck Your Habitat: You're Better Than Your Mess to me and I think it will be really helpful in learning how to attack clutter and disorganization in my home. The second book I picked up was The Rules Do Not Apply by Ariel Levy, a memoir about the adventures and heartbreak of being "a woman who is free to do whatever she chooses". Let's hope the reading bug hits me again soon!

Don't forget to head over to Becky's blog to see what she's loved, is currently reading and what she's going to read next! 

What are you reading right now? 

Any new releases you're looking forward to?

April 21, 2017

Peace of Mind with Owlet

Owlet Baby Monitor Smart Sock 2
Owlet Honest Review
This post was sponsored by Owlet, but as always, all thoughts and reviews 
expressed are my own. Thank you for supporting the companies that continue to 
make this hobby of mine possible!

I think one of the scariest things about being a parent is nighttime. You so desperately want your babies to go to sleep so that you can get some sleep, but then once they are asleep you can't help but worry. Are they safe? Are they still breathing? What if I don't hear her if she wakes up? I'm a pretty easing going parent, too easy, some might say, except when it comes to sleep. Peace of mind at nighttime can be hard to come by when you're a parent.

I like to keep my babies close during those first few months. I sleep better with them in my room, and I'd by lying if I said I didn't check on them a few times in the middle of the night to feel for their chest moving up and down. Emmy likes to sleep wrapped up like a burrito so sometimes it's hard to tell if she's moved at all once I've put her down for the evening.

And no matter how many times I check on Emmy, nighttime still makes me nervous. Plus, she goes to bed hours before me, so I'm not always upstairs when she's sleeping. This is where Owlet comes in and gives me peace of mind. The Owlet Smart Sock 2, which debuted last month, tracks your babe's heart rate and oxygen saturation and is designed to notify you if either falls out of the preset zones. As a registered nurse turned stay-at-home-mom, this technology is amazing to me.
Why I love the owlet baby monitor
The Owlet Smart Sock 2 comes with a small, minimalist base station and 3 different sized socks which are meant to grow with your baby. For reference, Emmy is wearing the second sock, which is designed for ages 1-4 months. The sock can be worn on either foot, and even with a squirming baby, is easy to put on. Then you download the Owlet app on to your phone and it will take you through the set-up, which was also incredibly easy. I did have issues getting my wi-fi to connect with the base, but I followed the trouble-shooting guide and all I had to do was restart my phone. There's also a short video on the app when you're setting it up which I found useful, so I would definitely recommend not skipping it. You can customize the app to your baby by adding his/her birth date and photo and you can turn the base station off and on right from the app. If an alarm goes off, both your phone and your base station are designed to notify you.
Owlet Baby Monitor App is easy to use
Peace of Mind with Owlet
I can't compare the Smart Sock 2 to the original one since I never tried that one, but from what I've learned, the improvements Owlet made to their original design have only further enhanced the brilliance of this product. The sock has been redesigned so that it fits more securely and the sensors are positioned so that there are fewer false notifications. The bluetooth range has been increased to 100 feet, which means the sock can be further away from the base station now, and the socks have been made open toed, making them more breathable and also allowing placement on either foot.
Owlet - baby gear every parent should have
Must have baby item - the Owlet monitor
A Review of why I love the Owlet Baby Monitor
We've been using the Owlet for a few weeks now, and I cannot emphasize enough, the peace of mind it has given me when I go to bed at night. Or anytime Emmy is sleeping. I know there are so many "must have" baby products out there nowadays, but I honestly think, sponsored post or not, this is that one item that every parent should have, whether you're a first, second, or third time parent. And if you're not a parent, but you know of one, or one to be, do them a favour and let them know about this product. If I could go back in time and have this technology for when Sully was a baby (had I known it about then), I 100% would!

April 13, 2017

Currently // April

Hello, from Florida!

If you don't follow me on Instagram (but why not? you really should!), then you probably don't know that we're currently vacationing in Florida right now! Even though I was really organized leading up to us leaving last week, I was also super busy getting ready for the trip, plus mommying and the posts I had hoped to have posted before we left never happened. I don't generally blog much when we go on holidays, but since it's been awhile since my last post, I thought I'd share a little currently post - Florida edition!
Enjoying: just being. My in-laws place in Florida is so relaxing, it's hot out, and I'm just enjoying waking up every morning with my family and not having an agenda. We've been down to Florida many times, and we plan to return many more, so we never feel this urge to have to do and see everything while we are here. This family vacation is exactly what I have been needing!
Reading: Forever, Interrupted, by Taylor Jenkins Reid. I started this on the plane and read almost 150 pages. I haven't picked it back up since we got here, even though it hooked me from page one and had me crying by page two. I'm just having a serious problem with picking up a book these days. Even Jim commented the other day on how he hasn't seen me read in weeks. That's because I haven't been, I told him. I can't even call it a reading slump, I'm just not in the mood.

Listening To: nothing. So, I downloaded a whole whack of podcasts for the plane rides, only to get my phone out during the flight and realizing that you need that dumb headphones connector for the iPhone 7! Ugh, never have I been so annoyed at Apple in my life! I looked at TJ Maxx here for a connector, but they didn't have any. If I make it back to Target before we leave, I will look there, but it seriously annoys me to buy something that I already have at home! These are the Podcasts I was hoping to listen to: The Minimalists, Happier with Gretchen Rubin, and That's So Maven.

Eating: all of the food from Trader Joe's! There's a Trader Joe's in Sarasota that's not too far from my in-laws place, but it's also not convenient to go to either. But we always make sure to go on our first or second day here so that we can buy some groceries from there to enjoy during our stay. I also stock up on some of my favourite nonperishables from there. I'm also indulging in all of the Chobani I can stomach, champagne from Trader Joe's because I have a serious love affair with champagne and it's so cheap from there, and fun cereal you can't get in Canada. Healthier eating can resume next week! ;)
shopping at trader joe's
Doing: cross-stitch. So, I haven't been reading or blogging because I've recently become obsessed with cross-stitching. I've been intrigued by some really neat cross-stitch designs I've been seeing on Instagram lately, and even though I haven't cross-stitched since I was a young girl, I just had this strong desire to start it up. I find it SO relaxing, and it's an activity that's much easier to do while watching TV or chatting with my family than reading or writing is. I'm pretty pleased with how my first piece is turning out and I'll be sure to share the finished product with you!

Looking Forward To: Our last few days in Florida. Sully started fighting a cold after the first few days here, and it's just getting worse. He is not himself and he just looks and sounds horrible. Then I felt like I was coming down with something, but thankfully, have been able to fight it off, although at one point I was convinced I had an ear infection, which has since gotten better with some polysporin ear drops my mother-in-law just happened to have on hand. Thank goodness for that! You can't purchase them in the States apparently, but she always brings them down from Canada with her. Here's hoping Sully starts feeling like his old self so we can get back to enjoying the pool, get to the beach, and just have some fun during our last few days here!

I won't be posting again until we are back from vacation next week, but I'll be posting over on my Instagram account if you want to follow along! And once we're home, I'll share all the highlights from the trip, as well as how traveling with both a toddler and an infant went!

Tell me something you're looking forward to!

How do you like to pass the time on plane rides?