• LIFE

    Three Under Three

    2019 is going to hold at least one big change for our family; we are adding baby number three! If you’ve followed along for any length of time and do the basic math that means that we will have three under three…technically, three under two and a half; either way, we’re about to be out numbered by our littles. We’re excited to share this news now, however, it has taken a while to come to this place. Let us explain.

    When we decided to get pregnant with Vanek (our second), neither of us thought through the entire process, we were just excited that we were going to have babies one year apart – how cool right? At times yes, but it was also a lot more work than I maybe bargained for, at least for the first 3 months. So when we talked about wanting a third, we wanted to make sure we were ready, at least more ready than we had been last time. Neither of us were in a place to be quite ready; I still felt like I was getting the hang of two and then we spontaneously took a trip to Bali which meant we needed to wait at least 6 months for the possibility of Zika to pass. Well, long story short but we were cleared of Zika at the end of March but still neither of us were quite ready, we had a big trip to Europe planned and figured we’d wait until after that.

    It only took one careless night before we found out baby number three would be coming sooner than expected (we’ve attached the video of Sam telling Kyle at the bottom). When I found out, I cried, and for the most part, not happy tears. I still felt uneasy about most day with the two boys, how the heck were we going to add another? I was scared, nervous and I ran through every situation possible (most of them highly unlikely). Kyle was also a little uncertain, after all, we had just had a conversation about maybe having two kids for a while and taking a longer break and then having two more later…or even just completing our family with two, we were in the midst of praying about it when we got the news.

    God clearly has different plans for our family, and while it took a while for our feelings to change, we are learning to accept it and even love it. It means that the amount of control we thought we had over our life is less as we allow God’s plan to take shape. It means much more trusting and relying on Him daily because we certainly cannot do it on our own.

    So yes, while this was not planned according to our agendas, God does not make mistakes, nor is He surprised so it was planned long ago by a loving, creative, powerful, yet gentle God and that is reassuring enough for us. Here’s to our party of five arriving January 2019!

    Never stop adventuring!

    PS. How cute is Kyle’s reaction? And this is the first announcement I’ve actually caught on video haha!

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  • Uncategorized

    *UPDATE* Travelling With Little Ones: Our Packing List

    In the interest of full disclosure, we are part of the Amazon Associates program. This means that some of the below items may earn us a small commission if purchased through the below links. There is no pressure for any of you to purchase these items through our links; however, should you choose to do so we thank you very much for your support!

    So before we left for our Arizona trip, if you want to see pictures of the trip check out our Instagram, we posted about the things we were bringing with us to make travelling with kids easier. If you haven’t read that post, you can find it here.

    We promised we would do a follow up post on how useful these items were and how much simpler they made traveling with kids, if at all. Here are our thoughts:

    Image result for ju ju be diaper bag queen of the nile

    Ju-Ju-Be Convertible Diaper Bag

    Was this diaper backpack as helpful as I was hoping? Yes. Because we did this trip with primarily carry-ons having a backpack was extremely helpful through the airports. All the pockets are ideal because it kept everything we needed for the boys organized and easily findable – especially if I was just telling Kyle where something is. Besides the airports & travel days, the backpack was still awesome. It allowed us more freedom when either one of the boys wanted to be carried or when we needed to hold Nixon’s hand while crossing busy streets, walking through Disneyland etc. Even though the bag is smaller than my old gym style diaper bag I never felt like I was compromised in what I could pack. In fact I found I only packed the essentials rather than filling the bag with all sorts of unnecessary items and never once did I think I was missing something.

    Image result for kidco peapod travel bed

    KidCo PeaPod Plus Travel Bed

    Again, this item proved to be as essential as we thought. There were a couple nights where all 7 of us crammed into a hotel room, and not having to worry about fitting 2 extra cribs in the room or making a bed on the floor was a bonus. They aren’t the smallest but they fit beside our bed no problem. It is nice that the boys are both contained but also helpful that there is fabric shades that roll down so it provides a dark & quiet space for them to sleep. A downside is the nylon material it is made out of. It makes a decent amount of noise when the kids move in their sleep but it really was a minor deal. Our youngest had issues in his tent but we found out pretty quickly that he prefers a plush mattress so we simply ordered an extra blanket from the hotel and put it under the entire bed (not inside where he sleeps to reduce risk of suffocation) and it worked surprisingly well. There are a couple modifications I’m looking into to help with the nylon bedding pad but I’ll update you on that once I find a solution.

     

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    Summer Infant 3D Two Double Stroller

    This too was a purchase I would highly recommend. After getting through airport security I was very thankful to have a stroller that folded up with one hand, into one piece. If we had brought our City Select that is easily an extra 3 pieces I would be carrying around when it was not assembled. Both the kids did awesome in the stroller, it folded up nice and compact – which was essential because our rental minivan was packed to the brim! A plus I hadn’t really considered was how nice it was to have it tandem style, getting through doorways, and even the crowds at Disneyland was much easier because we were nice and skinny rather than taking up the extra space. Now, I was warned when I bought the stroller that the seats did not recline very far and that is true. That made it a little difficult for the kids to fall asleep in a comfortable position, however, when they were tired enough it didn’t matter and they slept just fine. The storage bin underneath wasn’t huge but it held our UV shade and a couple water bottles which was awesome. The only thing I would recommend (& totally forgot to do) was bring our stroller caddy from our City Select. That would have just given us the storage for things like phones and sunglasses accessible at the handles – it’s on my list to grab when we go to Europe!

     

    Image result for jolly jumper solarsafe net

    Jolly Jumper Solarsafe Net

    Truthfully we didn’t use this a lot but when we did it came in very handy. I only say that because we weren’t out with the stroller much in Arizona so it was primarily just used during our day in Disneyland. It was a little awkward for the kid sitting in the front seat of the stroller but often times they just got used to it. It kept the inside of the stroller decently cool and allowed us the extra protection from the sun, especially when standing in lines around Disneyland. A bonus, it helped the kids stay asleep because it was a little darker and harder to see what was going on.

    Image result for Herschel Supply Co. Survey Kids, Black, One Size

    Herschel Supply Co. Survey Kids Backpack

    This was something we didn’t really use a ton except getting on and off the plane. Since the kids got to bring one small item on the plane we used this as Nixon’s carry on and it was perfect for what we needed it to do which was carry his toys and stuff. It perfectly fit a few books, toys and his stuffed bunny. Plus, it was light enough that he could carry it himself and as I mentioned last time it’s a way for us to show him that he can carry his own things.

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    Native Jefferson Child Shoes

    Yes. Yes. Yes. This was all Nixon wore during our entire trip. Easy to put on, easy to clean & comfortable to walk in. He wore them all day in Arizona because our patio & grass were often very hot and he wanted to walk over the rocks or stand on the steps in the pool. I never had to worry about changing shoes which, one less thing to worry about is a win in my books! And when we got photos done in the dessert and they got all dusty, a simple dunk in the pool and they were as good as new! In fact, we’ve had awesome weather since we’ve got back home and so we’ve just continued wearing them. I can see these being a staple for both our boys for many years to come. I’m even wanting a pair myself!

    Image result for zhiyun smooth q3

    Zhiyun Smooth-Q 3 Axis Handheld Gimbal

    This was Kyle’s baby so he will take over here.

    Hey everyone, I didn’t think I would have as much fun with this little thing as I did. I only opened it the day before we left and while I did use it a decent amount on the trip it was one of those things where I felt like I wasn’t using it to it’s full potential. It was super simple to use out of the box but it has many modes and other functions that I haven’t played with enough yet. I didn’t like that sometimes the Bluetooth connection took a few tries to connect but other than that I have no complaints. Stay tuned for a video of our Arizona trip!

    What is the one thing you never travel without?

    Never stop adventuring!

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  • LIFE

    Travelling With Little Ones: Our Packing Essentials (We Think)

    In the interest of full disclosure, we are part of the Amazon Associates program. This means that some of the below items may earn us a small commission if purchased through the below links. There is no pressure for any of you to purchase these items through our links; however, should you choose to do so we thank you very much for your support!

    As we have lots of travel coming up, we have decided to stock up on some items that we hope will make our lives a little bit easier while away from home. All of these items are items that we currently own and some we have used and others will get their first use this weekend as we fly to Los Angeles for a day at Disneyland before driving to Arizona for a week of sunshine and relaxation.

    Image result for ju ju be diaper bag queen of the nile

    Ju-Ju-Be Convertible Diaper Bag

    The Ju-Ju-Be is our third diaper bag in 21 months. Our first two were typical diaper bags that you carry on your shoulder. There was nothing wrong with either of them, the first just looked very diaper bag-ish and the second was a gym bag, but with two boys twelve months apart, I needed something easier to carry. I initially had my eye (& heart) set on the Fawn Design bag. It is absolutely stunning, but this time I vowed to put in proper research. As I watched several YouTube videos and read reviews, the Ju-Ju-Be kept being named as a top bag. So I watched more videos comparing them. It broke my heart but being honest to myself meant that I wasn’t going to get the Fawn Design bag and I decided on the Ju-Ju-Be. My reasons came down to this: the Ju-Ju-Be has more organization due to more pockets and it can hold more. If I only had one child who needed items in a diaper bag, I probably would have gone with the Fawn Design bag but with multiple young kids I need all the space I can get. I don’t have a Fawn Design bag to compare to but I have had my Ju-Ju-Be for a week and I am in love. I wish I had done the research when my first boy was born. The backpack option is the deal breaker for me (even though it does come with a shoulder strap option as well), I need two hands free at all times without a bag falling off my shoulder. I’m also an over-packer when it comes to everything (more about that for our Arizona trip later), and this bag can accommodate it all! A couple of the other features that I love are that the lining on the inside is always light coloured so that it’s not impossible to find something, there are a ton of pockets (both open and zippered) which makes organization a breeze, and the way it opens allows easy access to the stuff on the bottom. The shoulder straps are padded which is awesome because I plan on carrying it around a lot on my back over our next few trips. A bonus – my husband doesn’t mind carrying it! It is pricey but if you’re smarter than we are, it is only a one time investment and I believe it’ll last us a long time!

    Image result for kidco peapod travel bed

    KidCo PeaPod Plus Travel Bed

    Travelling with two kids under two meant finding a smarter sleeping solution than pack & plays because those things are heavy and bulky and we will not be hauling them around with us. Also, most hotels are not fond of having two cribs in one hotel room (especially in Europe), so we needed a new plan. I began researching all sorts of travel beds, and I came across these PeaPods. The first thing that caught my attention was that they are basically individual tents and the kids cannot escape from them – because our oldest isn’t in a bed yet, this was a huge concern of mine. Secondly, they fold up into a tiny circle and slip into a carry bag that fits into a carry on – perfect! They take less than a minute to set up and about the same time to fold up (once you get the hang of it). They also have a mattress pad that is attached on the underside, that can be removed for washing when needed. We got 2 plus sized ones because that way our kids can grow into them and I don’t need to worry about it for trips in the future. We didn’t simply purchase these for big trips, they have already come in handy when we’re at family gatherings and one or both of the kids needs a nap. Plus, during the summer they’ll be coming camping with us. We’ve been having the kids practice sleeping in them so that they are used to them for the trip and we’ve had zero issues with them sleeping so far. So, fingers crossed we’re in luck for our trip!

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    Summer Infant 3D Two Double Stroller

    Deciding to travel with our two boys meant finding a second stroller because we are not going to bring our rather large City Select through airports and around the world. Travel strollers are very common; however, it was more difficult to find one with two seats. There are a couple options that were a sit & stand or a small bench seat for the second child but because our oldest child is still under two I wanted a proper seat for him rather than the bench style. I also wanted both kids to be able to join us in sightseeing and face forward rather than one being stuck rear facing or stuffed under the other seat. After several searches and reading countless reviews, we decided on the Summer Infant 3DTwo Double stroller. This was a perfect fit for what we need because it isn’t the side by side which is often difficult to fit through door ways or along narrow streets, it has two full seats that recline, two full UV protectant sun shades and it folds up with one hand to be nice and small. We’ve been testing it out the last couple weeks and the kids love it and so do Kyle and I. The undercarriage is small compared to our City Select but more than sufficient for the few things we’ll put in there (that won’t be in our Ju-Ju-Be). Kyle asked the other day if we should just sell our City Select since the Summer Infant functions so well and while I love it, we’ll still keep our City Select for everyday use around home and use the Summer Infant for travelling!

    Image result for jolly jumper solarsafe net

    Jolly Jumper Solarsafe Net

    This was not a researched product but with a lot of our upcoming travel destinations being hot and sunny I knew I wanted a way to protect the kids while we are out sightseeing. This net is universal to most strollers so we will definitely use it at home over our City Select but I am most looking forward to knowing that the kids will be safe from the sun (& bugs) during our adventures.

    Image result for Herschel Supply Co. Survey Kids, Black, One Size

    Herschel Supply Co. Survey Kids Backpack

    This was an impulse buy that I am in love with, but it does serve a purpose. I am a firm believer that it is never to early to get kids to start pulling their weight. So, we purchased Nixon his own backpack to carry his items, especially on and off the plane. We obviously won’t put anything of great importance or weight in there but a couple books, toys and his stuffed bunny fit perfectly and that way he feels just like mum & dad with our backpacks & that also means it is less for me to carry. A bonus – Herschel is great quality (with a fantastic warranty policy) so this is a piece that will last us for a while!

    Image result for Native Jefferson Child Pigeon Grey / Shell White

    Native Jefferson Child Shoes

    Having a toddler, meant that I wanted a versatile shoe that he can wear all the time and the Native shoe was exactly what I was looking for, especially with summer coming up. No more needing to worry about scraped up toes or stepping on sharp things; these shoes can be worn at the waterpark, beach, or on everyday outings. Needless to say, I might just be getting myself some!

    Image result for zhiyun smooth q3

    Zhiyun Smooth-Q 3 Axis Handheld Gimbal

    Kyle will talk about this item as it is his baby on the list.

    Hey guys, this is a really cool item that I’m excited to get. A gimbal is a mechanism that stabilizes a moving object. I’m sure you’ve seen one of these before, there is a very popular one all over Kickstarter right now, but basically you put your phone in it and as you move your phone it keeps it stable so that your videos aren’t shaky. As we look to do more videos for the blog and Instagram (follow us if you don’t already @adventureneverenns) this gimbal is going to come in handy and we will start with our flight Friday, time in Disneyland on Saturday, and our week in our Arizona next week so stay tuned to see this baby in action.

    When we get back we will review all of these items and how well they performed at what we expected them to do.

    Never stop adventuring!

  • FRUGAL FRIDAY,  parenting

    Frugal Friday: Warehouse Sales

    As you know, we are going local with our kids clothing as we transition ourselves to more locally sourced and ethically made clothing for our family. As you also know, that transition can be very expensive.

    We are frugal people, hence the Frugal Friday segment on the blog. We don’t like paying full price for anything if we don’t have to. One thing I’ve learned through this transition is that being in-the-know can save you a lot of money. Whether it’s following the right accounts on Instagram, being on subscription lists, or just knowing the right people it can save you some dollars.

    Yesterday, one of my favourite local brands, Jax & Lennon, had a warehouse sale where they clear out all of the last season’s clothes at a discount. Everything was minimum 35% off all the way up to 75% off. I found out about it through the Instagram account and knew I would be going.

    After shopping yesterday, our kids are good for all seasons at all ages. We only need to continue to buy new stuff for Nixon as he grows.

    Through this whole process, we haven’t paid full price for anything. We’ve always waited for a sale or discount code before buying.

    We will be doing a fully detailed post about our favourite local brands and why we love some more than other in the near future so stay tuned!

    Never stop adventuring!

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  • LIFE,  marriage,  parenting

    Cheers to a New Decade

    t h i r t y.

    That number that seemed so far off for so many years but yet here it is, the start of a new decade and truthfully, I’m excited.

    I know society tends to dread turning older and even more so when it comes to thirty but why? Is it because we dislike responsibility and wish we could live young & carefree – aka Peter Pan syndrome, is it because we fear that this magical number of thirty means we can no longer have any fun and life instantly becomes boring? Either way, I know I don’t fit into either of those ‘camps’. Maybe it’s because I enjoy routine and predicability or maybe it’s because I’m choosing to be excited about the next decade.

    When I was younger I dreamed about what life might be like at thirty, I dreamt of being married, having kids, being finished school and maybe owning a house but more than all that – being content with the life I was living. I can truthfully say that by the grace of God, the majority of my dreams have come true and for the ones that haven’t, I’m learning to grow in contentment (I mean who can honestly afford a house here in Vancouver?!?). I love this feeling of being settled into life, day to day life feels a little chaotic at times but we have a rhythm and it feels good.

    I don’t believe my life is about to become boring, in fact I feel the exact opposite. As I am just entering into parenting, I think my life is about to get a lot more interesting, busy and fuller – which I am excited about. I didn’t have kids to have them hurry up and grow up, I want to embrace all the fun, and the not so fun, days of raising them. I am excited to journey with Kyle as we become better companions, build more memories and love deeper. Thirty is a chance to cherish old friendships and make new ones.

    I’m looking forward to this next decade. Growing our family (no we’re not pregnant), raising the two amazing little boys I already have, going on amazing adventures with my hubby and continually loving the life God has given me.

    Cheers to thirty & all the fun it will be!

    Never stop adventuring!

  • LIFE

    Christmas Traditions

    Almost a week into December already and we are in full Christmas mode over here! I’ve always loved Christmas, it is by far my favourite time of the year [maybe because my birthday also falls around the same time], as soon as Remembrance Day has passed I’m all about the Christmas music, decorations and activities.

    One of my favourite parts of the Christmas season is all the traditions and as I’ve started my own family Kyle and I have been talking about what traditions we want to start, and which ones we want to keep from our own families.

    Some that we’re keeping are, attending a Christmas Eve church service, heading to a neighbours house on Christmas Eve for appetizers and a white elephant gift exchange and putting a mandarin orange in the bottom of each stocking [I’m not sure where this tradition came from but it was always a good snack first thing on Christmas morning].

    Some traditions that we as a family are starting is, sleeping in front of the Christmas tree on Christmas Eve, getting new Christmas pajamas each year and wearing them when we decorate the tree, Elf on the Shelf – super easy when our oldest is only 16 months old and finding local Christmas light displays to go and visit.

    Prior to kids we had visited VanDusen Festival of Lights, Bright Nights at Stanley Park, Canyon Lights at Capilano Suspension Bridge. The age of our kids makes it a little difficult to do some of these again but one that we will definitely hit up is Canyon lights since we have the year pass – we’ll just make sure we go during a less busy time to make it the most enjoyable.

    We kicked off Christmas this year by attending Glow, which is a new Christmas attraction that we visited a couple weeks ago and it was amazing. I’ll write another post about it in the coming days but let me say that if you have young kids, it is a great place to take them to get into the Christmas spirit. We followed that by heading out the next day to Squamish to take a ride on the Polar Express, which I’ll also follow up on in another post.

    So far it’s been a great start to our Christmas season and I’d love to hear about some of your family traditions!

    Never stop adventuring!

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  • FRUGAL FRIDAY,  LIFE

    Frugal Friday: Facebook Buy & Sell

    This Frugal Friday post is a little different, it’s more about how we make ourselves a little bit of money. I’ve mentioned these buy & sell groups on Facebook before – particularly when looking to save money buying locally made kids clothes. However, they are also a great resource  to use when you’ve cleaned out your house and have a lot of stuff to get rid of.

    One night I had a friend over and she was appalled at how much clothing I had that was out of date. I said I knew I needed to clean it out and take it to the thrift store or donation bin. She then informed me of being able to sell every day items (including clothes) on these sites. It was perfect. Now, be warned that you’re not going to get what you paid for it, or likely even close but if you think about it, getting something is better than getting nothing, which is what you would have gotten if you just donated it. Don’t get me wrong, we still donate a lot of stuff because some things simply don’t sell but we usually try to sell all items on the bidding sites first.

    Let me give you an example, I just recently cleaned out my summer clothes when I was packing them away. I had probably close to 20 different items; a mix of tank tops, t-shirts, shorts, dresses etc. I simply laid them out on our floor, took a photo of them and posted them in a Lower Mainland bidding site. I set a price that was the minimum I was willing to sell the lot for ($5 I think) and people can bid in increments of .50 for the next 24 hours. I think the winning bid was only $7 but it was a win-win for me – my clothes were gone and I made a little bit of cash.

    Kyle and I have cleaned out our house using these sites and it’s awesome. We’ve also done a lot of buying through these sites because often you can find great deals. We bought our dinning room table and chairs for $50!

    These sites seem to have their own lingo so if you’re unsure what someone meant by something just ask – someone can usually help you out. My only warning is to make sure you read the rules that are specific to the group you are posting in and to follow them carefully. Other than that – happy buying & selling!

    Never stop adventuring!

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  • Uncategorized

    The Tension of Community

    Lately I’ve been living in this place of tension, the desire to want to keep to my introverted self but also wanting to find that community that I know God intended us to live in. To me, being introverted is so much easier, I can do life the want, only share the failures that I want and get caught up in the messiness that can come along with community.

    In faith I stepped out and started a mom’s bible/book study a couple weeks ago. It felt super awkward, I was anxious and I felt like I had no clue what I was doing. Some meetings would go by and I felt like no one was getting anything from the study, no one was sharing – it was all so surface level. To be honest I wanted to quit and go back to my introverted life. But then I remembered that I told myself, it’s only 6 weeks long and that in faith I had stepped out so in faith I would finish the study. The actual study itself is great, even when there are six babies clamouring for our attention, but as we’ve persevered through the weeks something even greater has happened, the awkwardness has started to fall away and authentic community has started.

    This past week I was so encouraged by everyone sharing and being willing to speak what is on their heart, share not only the good but the bad and hard stuff of life. And after, I felt refreshed – more than I usually do after meeting with people and I think that’s because truly we are made for community. A place where we can share how we’re doing life and listen to others, able to draw on each other and ask questions, knowing that we’re to help each other out. It doesn’t mean we’re doing everything the same way, each of our stories are different, how we decide to parent is different and that  gives us different perspective and appreciation for the fact that there isn’t just one way to do this [loving Jesus, being a wife, friend, mother etc]

    Authenticity doesn’t come overnight; it takes time to build trust but if you’re not willing to share more than surface level then your community won’t likely be much deeper than that. I encourage you to fight, fight to find that community where your soul feels refreshed even if it takes a while.

     

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  • parenting

    Today I Lost

    This is not a post complaining about my life, but rather a contrast to the sometimes ‘perfect picture’ we see posted all over social media. Kyle and I have two boys, Nixon who is 15.5 months and Vanek who is almost 3 months, they are a year and 18 days apart. No this wasn’t an accident and I am and always will be extremely grateful for them.

    However, just because I am grateful does not mean every day is easy. Every day comes with it’s ups and downs, rewards and challenges, tears and laughter, and then there are days like yesterday where I lost.

    Kyle had worked a 12 hour day (which he always does, twice a week), the day had started out pretty normal, but by noon I could sense that things were going sideways and I didn’t like it. Nixon, who is normally quite well behaved, was testing every rule we’ve ever had, defying everything I asked him to either do or not do. Vanek is usually very content with little attention, but yesterday he wanted all my attention, all the time – not possible with a needy toddler. On top of it all, it seemed both boys were on a nap strike.

    All I was craving was five minutes of peace and for my routine back. In order to survive a twelve hour day, I need routine, the kids need routine or it would be a mad house. On this day, that routine was quickly slipping away from me and that only added to my frustration. Why could I not get anything accomplished? Why were my children acting out like this? And despite by best efforts, why could I to do nothing right?

    By 8:30 Nixon was in bed, and Kyle was home to take Vanek. How was a grown women just defeated by her children?! As I stood in the silence, with tears running down my face I was overwhelmed by a feelings of guilt, followed by grace. I had raised my voice at both boys, more times than I care to admit, I had been more worried about getting our routine in place and getting chores done than stopping and just being the mum they needed today. Most importantly when things started to go crazy, I relied on myself rather than asking God to guide my day. Past experiences tell me that if I had taken a moment to ask for God’s help, things might have gone a little better than they did relying on myself. I don’t mean that the day would have done a 180 and become perfect but I believe God would have given me the grace I needed to handle the situations.

    I also realized that because my boys are often so well behaved that I forgot that they are so young and are going to have ‘bad’ days. ‘Bad’ meaning they are going to have meltdowns, be cranky and whiny; basically they are going to be kids. Heck, I’m an adult and I have cranky moments…(maybe some lonnng moments). I need to ease the expectations I have on them and myself. Allow them to be little and have their bad days, allow the routine to go out the window (for a short time) so I can be the mum they need in that moment – not once they’ve gone to bed.

    This time with them is short. I am only going to be the solution to their problems for a brief time and I don’t want to look back and wish I had slowed down more to be there for them – I want to do it now.

    So I may have lost today but tomorrow is a new day and even if it holds the same challenges, I’m glad I have a God who forgives and will provide all the grace I need to be the present mum my boys need.

    Never Stop Adventuring!

  • parenting

    Frugal Friday: Thrifting for Babies

    Welcome back for another Frugal Friday post. Today, I get to share with you a frugal way that I get clothes for the kids at, usually, discounted prices.

    Recently, Kyle and I have actively tried to start buying locally and more ethically sourced clothes. We’re starting with the kids’ wardrobes and then we will start to work on ours. I say “work on” because it does actually take work. You have to be mindful of everything you buy and where you buy it from. You have to decide how many of each article of clothing the kids are going to need. Right now, both kids have bins full of clothes. Going down this new path, though, we have realized a few things: it’s expensive, and thus their wardrobes will be cut down drastically, and it’s very hard to find everything you wear made locally and ethically.

    For example, jeans, we haven’t been able to find a local company that makes jeans. What about shoes? Yeah, minimoc is great but we live in Vancouver, it rains a lot as we’ve seen this past week, and those don’t do well in the rain. Where do you buy locally sourced boots? Runners? We realize that while it is easy to make up most of the kids’ wardrobes with locally sourced clothing, not everything, that we know of, is possible.

    But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try. As I mentioned earlier, it’s expensive. I can go to Carter’s and get the kids multiple items for $20. When I shop local, I can get one item for $20. This is why I said the kids’ wardrobes will be cut down drastically. Nixon will likely go from 10+ t-shirts to maybe 5. Vanek will go from 15-20 onesies down to maybe 5 long sleeve and 5 short sleeve. Nixon can usually keep a shirt clean for the day and Vanek usually goes through about 2 onesies per day right now. We do laundry minimum once every 5 days for the kids. That’s how we came up with those numbers.

    Now, how do I manage to find this locally, ethically sourced clothing for cheaper? 2 ways: Facebook and sales. Facebook has multiple swap/bidding sites as I’m sure you’re all aware. What you may not be aware of is that there are groups that focus on mostly local/trendy brands. These are closed groups so if you want to know which groups I’m talking about you can email me at adventureneverenns@gmail.com or if you know me personally you can text or Facebook message me.

    In these groups, for example, I have gotten deals on local leggings for $5 versus buying the same pair brand new for $23. They are second hand but kids at these ages don’t usually wear out their clothes very quickly so everything we’ve gotten has been in excellent condition. That is just one example but at minimum I’m buying these items for at least 50% off, usually more.

    The other way I’m frugal about kids clothes is sales. Warehouse sales, specifically. Often times local brands will do warehouse sales to get rid of the past seasons items to make room for the next season. These sales are great because you get items brand new and at up to 50% off, sometimes more. These sales are usually posted on Facebook but sometimes getting on brands’ mailing lists is the only way to know.

    Here are some of my favourite local brands:

    minimoc

    kewe clothing

    jax & lennon

    If there are others that you know of, please let us know – as I said, we’re still new at this! Even if shopping local isn’t something you’re ready to tackle, simply thrifting or shopping secondhand makes a huge difference. Stores such as Once Upon a Child have tons of inventory from newborn to size children’s size 12. By buying secondhand we are reducing the amount of new items these big box stores are needing to produce and you’re getting lightly worn items at a fraction of the cost, a win – win if you ask me!

    That’s all I have for now, happy thrifting!

    Never stop adventuring!