Woman in Real Life:The Art of the Everyday

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

How I Organized My Books & Vintage Bliss Tuesdays Linky Party #61


Some of you may recall that I embarked on a 4-month purge back in May, with a goal of finally weeding out ALL (or most) of the abundance of excess stuff we have in our home. You might well wonder, if this was a "4-month" purge and began back in May, why am I writing about it still? Good question.

I wouldn't want to say that the purge was a failure, because we actually made great strides, getting rid of an unprecedented (for us) amount of stuff - clothing, magazines, papers, VHS tapes, etc. But progress got stalled somewhere along the way (mainly when the kids were home for the summer) and frankly hasn't picked up all that much since. The really good thing is, though, I have more confidence about my ability to toss unneeded items. I saw some real successes and I am ready for a solid phase two. In that spirit, I want to show you the success that my family had in paring down and organizing our books. Books are a tough category for us, because we hold them dearly in our hearts.

Monday, November 30, 2015

10 Hot Christmas Toys & Where To Get 'Em Cheap in Toronto


If you are playing Santa to a kiddo or two this Christmas, I have an incredible tip to help you get great gifts on a budget. If you live or work in the Greater Toronto Area, get yourself to the Pop! Toy & Party Services Toy & Gift Warehouse Sale. Running until December 24th, this sale features popular toys for kids ages infant to 14 years at significantly reduced prices. Like, if you have $100 to spend, you can get 5 or 10 gifts! To give you a better idea of what you can find, here are 10 hot Christmas toys I spotted at the Pop! Toy Warehouse Sale.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

How To Be a VIP At The Mall - The RBC Avion Holiday Boutique


I don't think many people typically like the mall at Christmas time. Stalking people walking through the parking lot in order to get a parking space, wearing (or carrying) an uncomfortably warm winter coat, fielding the kids' constant requests for snacks (or just pleasing your own demanding tummy). Not to mention finding the perfect gift for each person on your list.

I can solve some of these problems for you. Well, I'm not actually going to solve them, but I will tell you about a luxurious service that can. Once again this year my family and I will take a break from holiday shopping in Toronto's busy Yorkdale Shopping Centre by hanging out in the RBC Avion Holiday Boutique. How does this solve our shopping woes? I'm gonna tell you.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

5 Tips To Expertly Light Your Room (and a Parrot Uncle giveaway)

5 Tips to Expertly Light Your Room - Lighting is so important in creating a pleasing mood in your home. Here are some useful tips for what lighting to choose and how to arrange it to best effect. With amazing lighting examples from Parrot Uncle. #decor #lighting #design #home #idea

Lighting is so important in a room, both for atmosphere and for practical reasons. The floor lamp we have in our family room recently broke (the base cracked and it wouldn't stand up anymore). My husband had to take it out of the room to fix it. That's when I realized how deficient the room was in terms of lighting.

When I sit down in the family room to read or watch TV in the evening, I don't like to turn on the room's overhead light - it's too bright (and too yellow - yuck). We don't have table lamps in the family room at the moment. Without the floor lamp, I was lost.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

My Food Photography Table & Vintage Bliss Tuesdays Linky Party #60


Granted my food photography table is sort of an odd item to feature for Vintage Bliss Tuesday. It's brand spanking new after all. But I bought it with my assortment of vintage and not-so-vintage dishes in mind. Rather than keeping the mismatched plates and cutlery mixed in with the daily family dishes, I wanted them to be kept separate and handy for food photos.

I bought the cart for something like $90 plus tax at Costco recently. I had looked at a number of other kitchen carts with a couple of desirable features in mind - particularly wheels so they could be moved around and shelves underneath the table top to hold a selection of plates, cutlery and cloths. I opted for this kitchen cart/chef's table for two reasons - because it is cheaper by at least half than the others I saw and because it has a solid bamboo top, meaning it provides a nice surface for pictures.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

3 Awesome Craft Books for Families

3 Awesome Craft Books for Families from DK Books; sewing, knitting and paper crafting ideas that appeal to kids and their parents. Great step by step tips for beginners. #knitting #sewing #crafts

Winter is on the horizon and that means I'll soon be spending quite a bit of time hibernating. While evenings spent in front of the fireplace with a book and a hot cocoa sound pretty good, eventually all that time indoors (especially with kids) leads to boredom. That's where these books from  DK Canada's Craft Boutique come in handy.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

What I Ate Wednesday, a day of vegan eats

Thinking about going #vegan or even preparing more vegetarian meals? It doesn't have to be difficult. Check out a day of easy, #healthy vegan eats!

Happy Wednesday! For those of you thinking about going vegetarian or vegan or perhaps even enjoying "meatless Mondays," you might worry that vegetarian meals are laborious to prepare. And I'm not gonna lie - they definitely can be so. There is sometimes a lot of veggies to cut, tofu to press, lentils to cook and assorted things to sauté.

But we all have those nights when we don't want to spend two hours in the kitchen making dinner. I have days where I feel really energetic and motivated to try recipes and create something great. But not as often as I'd like. More frequently I just want to get something reasonably healthy on the table as fast as humanly possible. If you're the same way, then I hope my What I Ate Wednesday posts can provide you with some helpful suggestions for quick and healthy vegan options.