i love lavender

Ever since I visited Maison Lavande last year (you may read about that hilarious post right here), I knew I was going to go back this year! So last week I decided to plan a road trip there with my Mom and the boys, and also with my aunt Lise-Ann who decided to join us as well, so early Saturday morning, we all piled up into my car and left for beautiful Maison Lavande. I’m pretty sure that everyone who visits Maison Lavande immediately falls in love with the place… and wants to go back after that… well I know did, and I know I will never skip a year from now on.

The moment I arrived I felt the same way I felt the first time I visited the place, just so quaint and peaceful. And as soon as they walked in, my Mom and my aunt both understood my obsession for the place! The lavender field is breathtaking. We took hundreds of pictures, just like everyone else in the field, as it’s just so pretty, so of course you want to bring those shots back home with you. Some professional photographers also offer sessions, and it’s something I may look into for next year!

So we slowly made our way across the field, walked into the forest trail, visited the chicken coop, had a picnic underneath an apple tree and ended our lunch with a delicious Lavender Frozen Yogurt! We also spent a lot of time in the quiet area at the back of the field where a couple of dozens of hammock chairs and some large bean bags are right there for you to use and relax. I wish we weren’t as tight on time so the boys could have taken a nap on the bags. They wanted too and so did I! Next time boys, for sure, like come on, a nap in a lavender heaven; count me IN!

Maison Lavande have two gorgeous boutiques where you can buy everything your lavender heart desires! Liam got a lavender essential oil roll-on (that I will re-create next week with my girlfriends at our first Essential Oils Make & Take) while I got a bubbly lavender and apple drink and a oatmeal and lavender cookie. The cookie was sooo good that I decided to attempt my own version on Sunday and it turned out AMAZING! I will be sharing my recipe later on this week.

So for now, here’s a few of the pictures I took trying to make you fall in love with the place. If you’re in the Montreal/Ottawa region, you HAVE to make the drive and visit. I wish I owned shares but I don’t so this is purely from my point of view… not sponsored or anything! Just for my love for lavender and for Maison Lavande! But you have to do it quick, because due to the massive heat wave last week, the flowers have exploded and the lavender season will be shorter than it usually is. So make plans to visit anytime in the next 2 weeks… as they’re opened every day. We might just see each other somewhere in the hammocks section!

 

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mother’s day

So they say better late than sorry, right? Well here comes my Mother’s Day weekend blog post! I know it’s well past us now, but it was just too good of a weekend not to share it; as it had what every great weekend should have: great food, family, flowers and lots of love!

We had decided to switch it up a little bit this year and do something different than our annual Mother’s Day dinner at my mom’s since my brother was working all day long, and it turned out great.

So let’s start at on the Friday… I was invited by Logan’s teacher Mme Janie and Mme Manon to attend a Mother’s Day brunch. The kids had decorated the classroom, prepared breakfast for all the mom’s and learned some cute songs. Logan was super excited to give me the card he had made for me, and I was lucky enough to come back from school with some nice potted flowers for me to take home. It was my last time at a MD brunch in this classroom, and let’s just say my heart broke a little bit as I was walking down the hallway. My babies are growing up so fast and I’m not sure I’m ready to face it… oh well, that’s another story for another time I guess!

So back to the weekend… we had a fun and relaxing Saturday, and then on Sunday morning, the boys woke me up pretty early, and not even to wish me Happy Mother’s Day, but to ask me to charge their freaking Nintendo DS. Yeah, I was kind of upset! But not long after (I reminded them), they remembered what we had talked about the day before and then showered me with love over and over again all morning long. Liam had made the best Mother’s Day card EVER. So simple, with beautiful words and with a Disney castle on the top that he had drew just for me, ‘because it’s your favourite place in the world’ he said, and with another drawing of us in our backyard pool ‘because it’s our favourite place at home’ he added. I also received an awesome recipe book, a beautiful avocado candle (hello guacamole!) and some pink reading socks, of course! Thank you family!

Later on Sunday, my mom and Frank joined us for lunch at Joey Rideau in the Ottawa market. It’s now definitely one of my favourite restaurant in the city, and I wanted to bring my mom there since her and Frank had never been and I thought it was about time for them try it. And they were not disappointed! It was just sooo good, as always! Like best dumplings in town! Frank had the fish tacos and they looked delicious, my mom had a nice warm roast beef sandwich and Brian had a spicy shrimp flatbread… Miam for everyone! We then took a stroll down to Major’s Hill Park for the Tulip Festival. We do try to go every year to watch and enjoy the thousands of flowers scattered across the city. We always talk about going to see different spots, but it seems like we always end up in the ByWard Market, and that’s ok, because it is just so beautiful there! So we took lots of pictures, had a Beaver Tail and some ice cream, and enjoy some time outside. The weather was pretty amazing on that day and being together was the best gift of all. It’s corny, but it’s true!

After a couple of hours walking up and down the Market, the boys were pretty beat up and we decided it was time to leave. Since we didn’t have our usual dinner plans at my mom’s, we decided to drive down to Hawkesbury and crash my mother-in-law’s Mother’s Day dinner with Brian’s siblings. Yep, the boys slept a full hour all the way down from Ottawa to Hawkesbury, but when they woke up, they were pretty happy that they were going to spend some time with their cousins. With both Jay-Jay (Jeremy) and Nini (Noémie) in High School now, they’re super busy and we don’t see enough of them, so the boys were really excited to see them. They all played ball outside for a little while, then had some fun taking some SnapChat pictures, while also (of course) taking advantage of their cousins’ iPads and electronic devices! We had a great BBQ diner: burgers and hot dogs with all the fixings and the best whipped cream and strawberry dessert! I was so glad we made the decision to drive down to see everyone!

So that was my Mother’s Day weekend; now here’s a little piece about me. You know what? Not being a mom was never an option for me. I feel like it’s the ONLY thing I wanted to be while growing up. Well, I won’t lie (and people close to me know all about this), the only thing I ever wanted while growing up was to be the mom of many cute little brown hair girls, but it didn’t happened; and now, I actually feel like I got all I ever wanted, and have all I’ll ever need to be happy, cause I have them. Let’s just say that being the mom of two boys had brought me joy beyond anything I could have imagined. Being their mom is amazing. I now know the names of all the cars from the Cars’ movie, I have watched endless YouTube videos on how to finish Nintendo games and on how to access various Mario Bros’ secret exits, I now own a baseball glove so I can play catch with them, and I have even mastered some wrestling techniques so I play fight with them when they feel like it. I may not braid hair daily, or buy cute dresses or have dance parties, but I have discovered so many new things I now love and couldn’t live without. Well, the one thing I for sure couldn’t live without is them, and I am so grateful to be their mom.

When you’re a mom, you need help from all the other moms in your life. The saying “It takes a village” is so true. My friends help me every day by sharing their fears, joy and triumphs, and by being there for me, at any time of the day. My family and in-laws are always willing to lend a hand and to be there for us. And then there’s my Mom. I could have never done any of this without her. She drops everything the minute I need help with the boys of with anything else. She has played countless games of bingos and memory cards with them. She knits everything their heart desires and also rocks them every chances she gets. I had such an awesome Mimi growing up that I often wondered if my mom would be able to fill her shoes! And she did. She’s just the best. The best thing my Mom gives us is time and lots of love. When I tell the boys that their Mimi is coming over, they’re just so genuinely happy. And I understand this feeling completely, because I feel the same way when she’s coming over. We’ve always been very close, shared the same interests and passion for baking, shopping and going to Disney! The only thing we don’t share is the love for gardening! And luckily for me, she loves it so much that she does most of mine every year! She might OVER SHARE videos on my Messenger account, but if it’s the price I have to pay for having the best Mom, well then I’ll keep on watching all of her funny videos!

I hope you celebrated all of the amazing women in your life on this Mother’s Day; I know I did. Spending the day with my Mom and my boys on that day meant so much. My mother is simply amazing and she takes on so much to make us happy. I’m so proud of her and love her so much. I won’t say she’s my best friend, because she’s so much more: she my mother.

 

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14 days of love

Last year, I decided to celebrate Valentine’s Day for 14 days.  Why not… it’s love, and isn’t all about love?

We don’t have family that lives in our city, so date nights are pretty rare.  They used to happen all the time, we would go out one day to the restaurant, then the next day to the movies, then again to the restaurant, and on a good week we’d finish it by going to Royal Thai for dinner on Friday!  But since we’ve had kids, it’s been different!  We sometime sneak in a date when we visit our family on the weekend, as we tell them we’re coming down for the day when we’re actually only passing by to drop the kids… (thanks Mom, thanks Annick, thanks Brian’s mom) but to be honest, it doesn’t happen that often!

So my 14 days of love was for our entire family.  It’s doesn’t have to be an elaborate thing.  Here’s a few things we did last year:

-heart shaped pancakes

-wrote valentine cards for our friends and family

-made some strawberry pop-tarts for my coworkers

-bought myself new red nail polish… it counts!

-had a stay-at-home movie night with v-day popcorn

-went through all the Valentine’s Day cards that we received through the years… (yes, I kept all the cards… since I was a baby… I love these type of souvenirs!)

 This year, I still want to do the 14-day Valentine thing, and here’s a few idea I’ve added on my list:

-go skate on the Rideau canal

-try a new restaurant

-make pink pancakes… this should happen every weekend!

-have the boys answer a little questionnaire about what they love and read it with them one day, like in 10 years…

-make more v-day popcorn… you can never have too much popcorn!

-heart shaped pizza TODAY

-wear fancy rain boots

 So what’s your favorite V-Day tradition?

I hope you’ll try the 14 days of love this year!  Or at least try to treat yourself and your lover a couple times!

Happy Valentine month!

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christmas eve eve

Excitement is in the air, stores are full and we are ready to party!  It’s Christmas Eve eve and our household could not be more excited about the next couple of days!

We got our Christmas cards done in time, the cake is ready, all the presents are wrapped up and we are listening non-stop to Christmas music!

The boys got to go to Brian’s workplace this morning while I slept in, tidy up the place and went for some last minute errands.  Once we all got back home, it was time to decorate our store bought gingerbread cookies (no time for the real deal this year)… but so what… as long as we got sugar and candies, right?  And boy we did!  I think that more icing sugar went into the boys than on the cookies!  I gave them little paintbrushes for helping spread the icing… by then end, they were painting themselves… fail!

I found some of the cutest Rudolph’s gingerbread at Bulk Barn… and I had high hopes for these pretty cookies… but no, it seems like we have no future in cookie decorating!  At least they’re delicious!

So tonight for Christmas Eve eve, we are staying in, watching Home Alone and Elf for probably the 500 times this month (but for the last time this Holiday season, I swear), while finding one last thing for our Elf Willy to do before he leaves for the North Pole tomorrow, until next December.

Wishing you all a great Christmas week, with all the food, the drinks and the signing that makes the Holidays so special.  Merry Christmas from our family to yours!

The best way to spread Christmas Cheer is signing loud for all to hear

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back to school

 

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I guess I would be happier about this if I wasn’t going back as well!!!

It’s bittersweet, summer was so good to us, I don’t want it to end.  So many great memories were created.  I wish we could start all over again.  But at the same time, it’s exciting!  New classes, new teachers, new shoes and backpacks!  Which friends will be in your class and what will your mom will have packed up for your lunch!

This year, both my boys will be in school.  Outch!  Both my babies, how did this happen?  We are still scrambling to label everything, making sure the shoes fits and finding a way to take the bus, ON TIME!

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We are so lucky, Logan will get the same teacher Liam got last year.  It’s a relief, for us as parents and for Logan who already knows and love her so much!  She was simply the best!

Liam is a little anxious, a new class room is hard for him, he does really well with routines and the friends he already knows.  He was a little stress tonight!  I’m sure he will do great with his new classmates, and we’ve heard amazing things about his new teacher! Logan is not stressed AT ALL!  He’s ready to rock this ‘Big Boy goes to school’ thing!   He will do great in maternelle!  The boys will also share a playground at school, not sure if it’s a good thing yet!!!  I will let you know in a few days!

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So back to school is tomorrow.  New and old routines will start!  Bed times will be earlier, days shorter, summer will run it course and soon we will take out our cozy sweaters and have pumpkin spice latte at Starbucks!  But for now let enjoy the last few days of this beautiful summer, get ready for school and enjoy those long evenings now that the kids go to bed earlier!

Are you ready for this school year?  What’s the best part for you?

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