April 30, 2015

A (Re) Introduction...

Happppy Thursday! I've spent over two hours throughout the past few days working on a post that I was going to publish today and then this morning as I was doing some last minute tweaks to it I started having second thoughts and decided that I should save it for a later date (does anyone else do that or is it just me?) So then I was back at square one with no blog content to post. Awesome. I started going through my blogger feed, looking at other posts to read and comment on, when I came upon Janet's post and was introduced to Belinda's blog and her Blog Everyday in May challenge. I participated in Blog Everyday in July last year and I loved having the prompts to help me out, plus the community of other bloggers I was introduced to. In the end I failed at actually posting every day that month - a trip to Vegas messed it up but it was SO worth it. As soon as I found out about this new challenge I knew I would be participating.  Tomorrow is the first day of May (what?!) and the prompt for tomorrow for Belinda's Blog Everyday in May challenge is to simply introduce yourself. However, I already have my April Goals progress/May Goals post ready to go for tomorrow so I decided to go ahead today and do a little re-introduction of myself today

Edited Friday May 1st to add that I just found out today through my friend Laura that there is another blog every day in May 'challenge' happening called Blogger, May I? so I am going to do both of the link-ups, just depending on what each one has for prompts that day. Todays prompt for both 'challenges' is Introduce Yourself so I'm also editing this post to add both buttons below - make sure to check out the link up and take a look around at some new faces and spaces!

My name is Kayla and I live in the Great White North (that's Canada, in case you're confused). Saskatchewan, to be exact - right in the SE corner of the prairies, 20 minutes from the United States border.  I have a fur baby, Krickit, who is turning ONE next Saturday. Krickit and I are currently back living with my parents as I navigate who I am and what I want to do with my life (no easy feat!). I'm (almost) 28 years old though with the braces I got in December I look more like I'm just out of high school, not getting ready for my 10 year high school reunion this Summer. 

I LOVE reading, coffee, Tex-Mex, wine, Sour Patch Kids, traveling, tattoos, and my family and friends. I loathe spiders, mushrooms, cotton balls, and any team other than the SK Roughriders. 

(I did the '4 Things' tag for my Re-Introduction but wasn't actually tagged by anyone, I just thought it would be a good way to get to know a little more about me, and then today Laura actually tagged me in it - I was ahead of the game for once - whoop whoop!)

4 Things People Call Me Other Than My Name
1. Chigle
2. Smay
3. K
4. Chiclet
Chigle is the nickname given to me by my Grandpa - it means 'Cheeky' in Metis. My friends in high school all had nicknames for each other and mine was Chiclet since they could never pronounce Chigle right. Thus the reason my Twitter and IG handles are ChigleChic (in case you've ever wondered)

4 Jobs I've Had
1. Director of two different childcare centres
2. Sales clerk at a clothing store/cell phone store
3. Nanny 
4. Waitress (World's worst waitress right here!)

4 Things I Do NOT Eat
1. Mushrooms
2. Anything that swims
3. Green Onion (but gimme all the other onions)
4. 'Weird' meats (duck, lamb, deer, bison, etc)

4 Places I've Lived
1. O-town, Saskatchewan
2. Estevan, Saskatchewan
3. Medicine Hat, Alberta
4. --- (That will be changing within the next couple of years!)

4 Things I Am Looking Forward to This Year
1. My 'baby' brothers wedding
2. Las Vegas trip to celebrate my sisters 'Dirty Thirty'
3. Krickits FIRST birthday
4. Minneapolis trip to watch my first ever MLB game 

4 Books I Recommend
1. Before I Go To Sleep - SJ Watson
2. The Girl on the Train - Paula Hawkins
3. To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
4. Harry Potter series ( I can't pick just one!) - JK Rowling 

4 Places I Would Rather Be Now
1. New Braunfels, Texas
2. Las Vegas, Nevada
3. NYC, NY
4. The beach (any beach!)

4 Things I Always Say
1. "For sure!"
2. "Sorry!" (It's a Canadian thing...) and "No worries"
3. "Definitely"
4. "Sounds good"

4 Movies I Can Watch Over and Over Again
1. Mean Girls
2. Field of Dreams
3. She's All That
4. Home Alone

4 Television Shows I Love
1. Pretty Little Liars
2. Greys Anatomy
3. How I Met Your Mother
4. Criminal Minds 

4 Places I've Been on Vacation
1. Pennsylvania/NYC
2. Las Vegas
3. Europe
4. Texas

Tracy tagged me on IG earlier in the week to post 10 things about myself - here it is

Thanks for the tag @tracyachangeofpace - you wouldn't believe how long it took me to come up with these 10 things, I've spent more time on this than I did on some of my College papers 😂😂😂 1⃣ My favourite colour is purple (only because black isn't considered a colour) 2⃣ I have 10 tattoos and plans for many, many more 3⃣ I'm allergic to the outdoors, but that will never stop me from enjoying them 4⃣ I got braces at the age of 27 and it's one of the best decisions I've ever made (though they've made me broke as a joke) 5⃣ I once spent over 6+ hours in line of the Gopher Run at the Craven Country Jamboree to get up close for Taylor Swifts headlining performance - it was so worth every minute in line 6⃣ I cry when I'm mad - I can't stop the tears no matter how hard I try 7⃣ I'm a recovering picky eater but I still won't eat anything that swims 🙅 8⃣ When I was 15 I spent 10 days travelling through Italy, Austria, Switzerland and Germany - Venice was my favourite of all our stops 9⃣ My favourite book of all time is To Kill A Mockingbird 🔟 I'm really superstitious yet 13 is my favourite number and I have it tattooed on my body (I won't, however, pick up a spoon if I drop it). Now it's your turn to tell me ten things about YOU @malloryoleshko @lauranicolew @kerrifor @kristiebluejeans
A photo posted by KRMathison (@chiglechic) on

You can also check out my 'Meet K' page for more info all about moi! 

And if you're still looking for more:

Someday I Will...
Never Have I Ever
The Facts of Me
I'm the Kinda Girl Who...
30 Before 30
Reverse Bucket List
28 Before 28
Happy Friday Eve y'all

Found Love. Now What?


April 27, 2015

Catching Up...

I've only made it to this space five times this month. FIVE. I'll take my award for World's Worst Blogger now please... I've never made any promises to any one (other than myself) regarding this space but whenever I take a break from this space, however unintentional it may be, I feel guilty. Guilty because as much as I love to write it seems to always take a back seat to everything else in my life. Always. I think part of the reason is still not having my writing space set up (having no where to sit at my desk is kind of a problem), but I just haven't found an affordable chair that I LOVE yet and I don't want to buy something that I don't love. I'm trying to spend my money wisely and that just wouldn't jive with it. I have to head to the 'Queen City' this Wednesday for an Orthodontist appointment so I'm crossing all my fingers and toes that I'll finally find a chair that works with the space so I can get my writing space completed. Wish me luck! 

April's been a very busy month - the busiest out of the year, aside from September - for me workwise and now I'm looking forward to some downtime before things just start getting crazy again with the cluster-eff that is this Summer. I only have two open weekends all Summer. TWO. But I'm actually loving it because it means this Summer is going to be a great one with weddings, birthdays, parties, and reunions all in the mix.

I've got some days off this week and I have BIG plans for them. I've had things on my to-do list for months now and I want to get them crossed off  the list before work gets intense again and before the Summer is here and I barely have a spare moment to think. Some of these things have been weighing me down for awhile now, giving me anxiety that I haven't completed them yet, so I can't wait to get them done and have one less thing to worry about. I have parties to start planning people! I'm also going to carve out some time this week to go comment on all the posts that I've missed this month - I hate that I didn't make the time to come leave some love with all of y'all this month :(

Anywhoodle, a little bit about what's been going on this month (aside from the work stuff - there's no place for that here)

I'm currently on Day 8 of the Whole30. It's going really good, aside from my brain thinking I NEED the Welch's fruit snacks that I got addicted to after getting my braces put on (they are the only snack food I can eat because of how soft they are). My parents are doing it as well and this is the second time we've done it now - we did it around this same time last year. I actually only did 20 days of it last year because my Texas vacation coincided with it and I was not going to limit myself while on vacation (give me all the Tex-mex!) so I'm excited to make it through the WHOLE 30 days this time

Here's an idea of what I've been eating over the past 8 days of this Whole30. I'll be doing a post on Day 15 about  my progress and then again at the end when I'm all finished to show the results so stay tuned! Being allowed potatoes this go around has been a complete game changer (the Whole30 started allowing them in August 14' and I last did this in April 14') - last year I constantly felt hungry. This go around I'm full after a small meal and don't even have that many cravings later in the night for a snack

Speaking of Texas, it will have been one year since my #10DaysInTexas trip next month and I am missing it like crazy - even more so than NYC and I never thought I would say that. I even looked at flights down there on the weekend - I have a bunch of holiday days at work to use up and I'm getting antsy that they're not getting used. Where's that money tree I've been waiting for?!

I took a whirlwind trip to the Twin Cities with my sister and two nieces - I posted about it here. I head back again that way in about 5 weeks and even though I don't follow baseball I'm oddly excited about going to watch my first MLB game. It might have something to do with the fact that I ordered a jersey to wear and I'm in love with it and can't wait to actually wear it. The thought of beers at the stadium helps too

My seasonal allergies, combined with a sinus infection, had me laid up in bed all last weekend - it was terrible. The plus side? I read ten books while being laid up in bed. The negative? I spent over $40 on books in the span of 24 hours - the downside to having a Nook and books at the click of a finger #whoops

I also had to deal with credit card fraud on my Visa. That was fun. Thankfully RBC noticed the charge seemed funny right away and suspended my account and I also noticed right away and we got it figured out. Luckily it was only a charge for less than $10 that had been made and it was refunded to me right way. It could have been a lot worse. Having to cancel that card and then change all my account information with a bunch of different companies that do pre-auth's from my Visa every month didn't help with how crazy the month was

My College BFF Marissa had her very first baby last week - an adorable little girl named Jamie Rae. They live 8 hours away from me (that's what happens when you go to College 7 hours away) but I'm really hoping I'll be able to meet her daughter before she's the one going off to College. I haven't even seen Marissa since her wedding almost 2 years ago - yikes! I actually haven't even been back to Medicine Hat, the city I attended College in, since the day I convocated from Medicine Hat College almost seven years ago (I'm having a case of the vapours after writing that out...)

Back when we were the babies 

Graycie had her dance recital this Saturday - her second ever. She's in the Tiny Tots dance class and they're pretty much the highlight of the recital - sooo cute!  I feel terrible because this will be the second year that I have to miss Rae's recital - last year I was in Texas and this year I'll be in Minneapolis. I'll have to make it up to her somehow (any ideas would be appreciated!)

I've been doing Helene's #30photosinbetween photo challenge on IG - another item to cross off my Spring Bucket list! AND I just saw this morning on Twitter that the most hilarious woman in all of Blogland, Taylor from the Daily Tay, is doing a May IG photo challenge and I will be all over that. I love these challenges because they make sure that I'm posting to IG. As much as I'm addicted to checking social media I sometimes forget to actually post myself 

May is a whole new month and I'm excited for the plans I have for this space and for all the goals I have for the upcoming months - 2015 has been a great year so far but its only going to get better!

April 17, 2015

Twin Cities Trip Number 4...

My sister and I first took her daughters to Minneapolis to the Mall of America in November 2013. The girls birthdays are in September, 6 days apart, and we planned on making it an annual tradition to take them on a birthday trip (one day it WILL be Disney - as much as I would have loved to be able to take them on their first airplane experience this trip that is completely out of the budget right now). Toni couldn't make her work schedule balance to do it during last Fall/beginning of Winter and it seemed like we wouldn't be able to do it at all for their 2014 birthdays. Then she realized that she had some days in April that she had to take off and she mentioned going to Minneapolis for their late birthday trip during those dates. I had just sent my passport away to be renewed though and it didn't look like we'd be able to make those days. Somehow my passport came in early (that never happens!) and so the plans starting taking shape. With Minneapolis only a 10 hour drive away from us its kind of a no brainer to take the girls there each year. Even to take them to West Edmonton Mall is a longer drive (though we do have family there...) and they LOVED our first trip so much that they were begging us to go back again. The trip almost didn't happen because of a certain 4 year old's behaviour in the weeks leading up to the trip but she turned it around so we were still able to go. 

We left O-town around 6:00 on Friday night. Toni hadn't been able to get the Friday off of work, only the Monday, so we were short on time but wanted to get as far as we could on Friday. As mentioned in my Third Thursday Travel post for April, we didn't pay for a single hotel room during our stay, and we spent the first night in Moorhead, MN - a little over half way to Minneapolis. We got up the next morning and made the rest of the drive to Minneapolis. We settled into our hotel, and then caught the shuttle to head to the Mall of America.  We were starving, we'd only had a little bit of breakfast at our hotels continental breakfast that morning, so our first stop was the Twin City Grill in the MOA. Their chips and guacamole and salt and vinegar fries are heavenly - if you are ever at the Mall of America I highly recommend this restaurant! After our lunch it was time for the rides. My nieces are daredevils and were always on rides that had waaay older kids on them. 

We had a supper reservation at Benihana's that night. I was first introducted to hibachi cooking while in Pennsylvania a few summers ago - we went to Benihana's for a friends birthday supper and I fell in love. When I found out last summer that there was a new location in the MOA I made the friends that were with me make a supper reservation - I would have went by myself if I had to! When Toni and I were planning the girls birthday trip eating at Benihana's was on the list for sure. We were seated with a nice local family that was out celebrating their son's 12th birthday. Audie-Rae was so interested in the chopsticks - she was determined to eat with them, not even touching her fork at all. Her Mom and I had none of that - we aren't cultured enough to not make fools of ourselves trying to use them. Graycie liked having the food cooked in front of us but was a little shy with sharing our 'table' with another family so she didn't eat much (though she told everybody afterwards that it was her favourite restaurant of the trip). 

After our supper we went back down to get the most of the girls wristbands to finish off their rides. Toni and I were suckered into going onto a few of the rides with them because Graycie was just a little bit too small to go without a chaperone on some of them. Luckily the adult chaperone doesn't have to pay for the ride but roller coasters are SO not my thing and I was co-erced into going on the roller coaster twice and the log ride once. She was the tiniest person on the roller coaster and it went soooo fast and I was so afraid she was going to fall right out of it. Again, roller coasters are not my thing!

On Sunday we got up early and got ready to change hotels and head to the Waterpark of America, which is located in the Radisson, which was also where we stayed for our last night. The Waterpark is a little bit pricey but when you take into consideration the fact that you get 5 hours in it its not that bad. The funny thing is that Graycie would have been content just swimming in a regular hotel pool (which is free) - the girl is a fish and just wants to swim. The pirate ship play structure, waterslides, etc. didn't matter to her, it was all about swimming in the water.  Audie-Rae the daredevil went on everything - Toni definitely got her moneys worth out of her! 

We left the Waterpark an hour before we had to - the MOA closes at 7 on Sunday so we had to get our butts in gear to get showered and ready to catch our shuttle to it. When we got there the first place we went was for a coffee at Starbucks and then to the American Girl store to get the girls American Girl dolls hair done - it was much needed, their dolls looked homeless befor their makeovers.  After that we headed to the Disney Store so they could spend the last of their birthday money, and then it was time for the thing I was most looking forward to - Chipotle! BUT I was mega disappointed when they were out of corn salsa. How does that happen?!  It was a MEGA letdown. 

After Nickelodeon World, the Waterpark of America, and taking the girls to the American Girl store and to the Disney store there was no other time for shopping - not an issue at all though because I head back that way in just over 5 weeks to go to Blue Jays games with my brother and sister in law!

The mall closed at 7 on Sunday night but the theatre was still open so we got tickets to see Cinderella since we didn't have any other plans for the night. The movie was actually really good and the girls enjoyed it. After the movie we got a taxi back to our hotel and the girls fell asleep as soon as their heads hit the pillow. Toni and I ordered pizza from our favourite MN pizza place - Toppers- and then settled in to watch the MTV Movie awards. How hilarious is Amy Schumer and how did I not know she existed until then?!

We got up early on Monday morning to get out of the city and get on the road. We had plans to be able to stop in Minot and do some grocery shopping, make a trip to Target, and have supper but even the best laid plans go awry. We were only about two hours out of Minneapolis when we hit a piece of metal laying in the middle of the interstate and blew a tire. After using the navigation in Toni's van to find the closest auto repair and trying to explain to the man on the phone where we were (and we couldn't look up our gps location on our iPhones because they only work for messaging and calls while we're in the states) and him having absolutely NO idea,  a DOT worker finally stopped to help us out. Then a Conservation Officer and Highway Patrol stopped as well. After about an hour on the side of the road, and after a tow truck showed up (that the DOT had called),  the three heros (the DOT officer had left after calling the tow truck) changed our tire so we could make it to the next town to a car dealership/autobody to see if they had a tire and rim. The Conservation Officer stuck around for over an hour at the dealership helping to try and find the right parts so we could get the van fixed and back on the road - he went above and beyond for us and we were SO thankful for him! We were at the car dealership for around 4 hours and we were more than ready to get back on the road by the time the van was fixed. Thankfully the dealership had a little area for the girls to play and they finally got us a loaner car at one point so we could go eat - we were starving! 

The picture doesn't do the damage justice at all. It was not a good situation

We finally got home around 2:00 am on Tuesday - 9 hours after our original estimated time. BUT it could have been much worse so we just have to be thankful for that.  The repairs to Toni's van should be covered by insurance so it will hopefully all work out in the end. After three days with the tiny humans at the MOA and on the road I'm not sure if we'll attempt to actually make the trip this year around their actual birthdays (if we're brave enough too I should say) - making two trips in one year - or if they will always be behind in getting their birthday trips now. There were a couple moments during the trip that I was NEVER going back anywhere with them - but now that were back home and I don't have to spend every waking moment with them I'm thinking another trip will definitely be in the works!

April 16, 2015

Traveling on a Budget...

I love to travel and explore new places but I'm also a girl on a budget trying to save money for a down payment on my first home. The two things don't exactly go hand in hand but I refuse to give up my love of traveling even if it means it takes me that much longer to finally purchase my first home. In my travels I've found a few ways to cut corners to save on traveling while still getting to enjoy the whole traveling experience and not having to limit myself while on vacation and also ways to save money to use towards traveling- and I'm going to share them with you! 

$5 Savings Plan 

The premise behind this has been floating around Pinterest for awhile now. Every time a $5 bill comes into your possession it gets put aside and not spent. Last year I saved $735 in $5 bills AND I hardly ever carry cash - just imagine if I did use cash more often how much I could have saved! The $735 is going to be used for my upcoming Vegas trip for my sister's 'Dirty Thirty' so I will only have to save up spending money and drinking money since my flight and hotel will all be covered under the $735 I saved in $5 bills - and I won't even miss that money because it will be like it was never even there!

Use Credit Card Rewards/Hotel Rewards

Last weekend my sister and I, along with her daughters, took a whirlwind weekend road trip to Minneapolis - a 10 hour drive from home. We stayed at a different hotel each night, for a total of three nights, and we didn't pay a single cent for the hotels. How? The first night we didn't leave home until 6 pm because my sister had to work late, so we only went about halfway to Minneapolis and spent the night in Fargo, ND. My sister booked the hotel using her Choice Rewards points, so the room was completely free. The next night, once we arrived in Minneapolis (Bloomington if we're going to get technical) we stayed at the Courtyard Marriot Mall of America. I'm a Marriot rewards member and since I always stay at Marriot properties everytime I go to Minneapolis (4 times now) I had enough points to get us a room for one night for free. The next night we stayed at the Radisson Mall of America with the Waterpark. I used my RBC Credit Card rewards to get us a room for another night entirely for free.  Moving hotels every day isn't ideal but it was worth it to not have to pay a single cent for your stay!

Driving VS Flying

Last May I roadtripped to New Braunfels, Texas with my brother and sister-in-law. We did the entire 27 hour drive straight - no stopping at hotels to sleep and on the way down we stopped in Minot, ND and loaded up a cooler with drinks and snacks so there would be very minimal stopping - we just wanted to get there as soon as possible. We were gone from home for a total of 10 days and I only had to pay $575 for hotel for three nights (every other night was spent in the vehicle or at our aunt and uncles home in New Braunfels) AND my 3rd of the gas it took to drive 27 hours each way. When we had initally looked at flying there a one way flight was that much - yikes! Yes, a 27 hour drive is looong but for a girl on a budget it was definitely worth it!

Garage Sales/Online Garage Sale Sites

In the past 6 months(ish) I have probably made over $500 just by selling used items on my hometown's online garage sale sites on FB. People go crazzzy for designer items on those sites I've found. I'm terrible at buying things on impulse and then realizing I will never wear it/use it as soon as I get it home. I make my money back by selling it on those sites and whatever money I make goes into my vacation savings account. 

Look at ALL the Options

2 1/2 years ago my friend Scooby and I flew from Minot, North Dakota to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Minot is only an hour and a half drive from where I live and is actually the closest airport to me. Scooby's friend Mri is a doctor doing her residency at a hospital in Harrisburg and we went on vacation for 10 days to visit her and go to NYC. Flying into Harrisburg from Minot and then back to Minot from Harrisburg was around $600 for both ways. When Scooby and I went to NYC from Harrisburg we took the Amtrak train, which cost us a total of  $50. When you look at flying straight into NYC from this area flights are around $1000 for just ONE way. Scooby and I have both said that when we do eventually get back to NYC we are going to do it the smart way again - even if Mri isn't living in Harrisburg anymore it would still be financially smarter for us to fly into Harrisburg and then take the train to NYC again. Saving all that money allowed us to get a more expensive hotel in NYC for two nights that was only a  block away from Times Square and also left us with more spending money for shopping and for the entrance fees to all the tourist-y things we did - the Empire State Building, Central Park Zoo, Madame Tussauds Wax Museum, Statue of Liberty. etc. Now whenever I look at traveling I spend hours searching for the most inexpensive way to get where I want to go. Sometimes the hassel of flying into an area that isn't directly where you want to go isn't worth it but its definitely worth it to at least check out ALL of the options!

Kristie's Blue Jeans

Do you have any awesome tips on how to save on traveling? Let me know in the comments!

April 15, 2015

Dogs in Scarves...

Happy humpday y'all! I accidentally took a mini hiatus from the blog this month -  I blinked and suddenly it was the middle of April and I realized I'd only posted twice this month so far. Faillll. That will all be changing as of right now though because I told myself at the beginning of the year that I would be much better at blogging in 2015 and I want to stick to something for once gosh darnit! I also have a lot of catching up to do on all of y'alls blogs so be prepared for an influx of comments to your inbox. Sorry folks

For today I'm going to leave y'all with a photo dump of some of the happenings from the beginning of the month. Spoiler alert: there's a picture of Krickit wearing a scarf at the bottom of the post that you simply must see! I die at the cuteness. Also, make sure to check back tomorrow for Third Thursday Travel and on Friday for a recap on the whirlwhind Twin Cities trip I just returned from. When I say whirlwind I mean it 100% -  I'm about 40 hours behind on sleep and 5 cups of coffee a day isn't cutting it anymore - I think I'm immune.  Is it the weekend yet?! I have big plans to read the new book I bought at Target in Fargo and not leave my bed for the entire weekend. Unless its nice out then all those plans fly out the window because of two words: beer pong. But, much like Linda Evangelista not getting out of bed for less than $10,000 a day,  I refuse to get out of bed this weekend unless the temperature is in the 20's. Is it bad that I kind of hope the weather this weekend is super cold and crummy?....


Sorry, I'm all over the place - back to recapping April. Easter flew by in the blink of an eye as per usual. All of my family is in the area so we never have any big Easter plans. My Mama just always makes a turkey supper with all the fixings on Easter Sunday and we all over eat and them complain for at least two days straight how bloated and disgusting we are. But nothing will ever change that - my Mama's to good of a cook. 

Apparently I'm too old for the Easter Bunny to make stops at my house anymore (rude...).  I made up baskets for my nieces because apparently I like spending money wastefully on a bunch of candy that they will eat all in one sitting. The last time the Easter Bunny payed me a visit was in my junior year of College. I came home for Easter break and for some reason my family was gone somewhere (for the life of my I can't remember where they all were, I just remember being abandoned. Cut me some slack it was 8 years ago *yikes*). I was super bummed out that I was alone at Easter, but my spirits were lifted when I went to leave the house and there was an Easter basket and a big stuffed duck sitting on the deck of my parents house. Though I have my suspicions on who was playing the Easter Bunny the person has never fessed up. If you're reading this and YOU were that person please let me know - its driving me nuts that I *think* I know but its never been confirmed. Thankyouverymuch

Anywhoodle - I had Good Friday off of work since its a Stat holiday and the weekend flew by. All the plans I had in my head of what I would get accomplished just never happened. Long weekends are never long enough! It was also Krickit's first Easter and though you would expect me to have gone crazy and done up a huge Easter basket for her, the only thing I got her was a football toy that my parents German Shepherd has now claimed as her own...

Easter for the Mathison family revolves all around the food. Yes, food. We obviously know what Easter is actually about but my brother is an atheist  and though my parents and sister and I all believe in God we have never gone to church on Sunday and I'm pretty sure lightning would strike if my Dad went to church for anything but a wedding or a funeral, so food it is. 

I made carrot cake on Saturday afternoon for Easter supper dessert. My late Grandma Hilda made the best carrot cake - it was so yummy - and though I don't think anything will ever compare to hers, I have to admit that the one I made was pretty darn good. On Saturday night myself,  my sister, brother, and sister-in-law got together to play some board games - it had been waaay to long since we had done so. I'm totally crossing off 'Have Family Game Night' from my Spring Bucket List, even though our parents were silly and wouldn't play with us (again, rude!). I had made some Easter-y cookie dough that evening as well that had to chill in the fridge for a few hours and then had to bake them that night as we played our games. Another thing crossed off that bucket list! Then on Sunday I made burnt grapes and Snicker Caramel Apple Pie, and of course it wouldn't be Easter without devilled eggs. Those disappeared real fast with two tiny humans who LOVE them just as much as the adults. My mama outdid herself with all the fixings that go along with the turkey. I actually think I've confessed this before but in case your new around here I'll say it again: I absolutely cannot have cold foods touching hot foods on my plate. Like, a cold salad should NEVER have gravy touching it. Blechhh. So, I ate my Easter supper off a large serving platter and I am not ashamed to admit it. Then by 10:00 that night I was writhing in pain at how full I was. But again, that is never going to change unless my Mama all of a sudden forgets how to cook and becomes terrible at it. Because lord knows I will never be able to prepare a turkey to be eaten - the thought of it just grosses me out

Surprising tidbit: I didn't gain back any of the weight I lost from doing #4weeksfit even though I ate everything in sight all of Easter weekend. I think the fact that I made sure I was getting in a good workout each day helped with that fact. Having a bridesmaid dress to look forward to fitting into is the best motivation there is. The best! (Ok, so maybe having a wedding dress to fit into would be the best motivation but since that is the furthest thing on my radar lets just go with it, okay?)

Last week was a busy one - I had a meeting for work two hours away on the Tuesday in which during the morning I drove through a legit blizzard and then in the afternoon I had to turn my air conditioning on. Seriously. Saskatchewan weather is so silly. It's a busy time of work for me with getting ready for relicensing so with inspections getting done, paperwork to get ready, etc. the rest of the week flew by and before I knew it it was time to head to Minneapolis.

So to recap: I ate my way through the first half of April and it took a long ass time for me to get to the point of this post. I'm sorry. It's been awhile since I've blogged and apparently I've forgotten how to. Please forgive me. I promise I'll end this now. But first, what you've all been waiting for: a dog wearing a scarf:

I die. If I didn't love that scarf so much I would totally let her wear it all the time. Now that I'm a sewing expert (ha!) I need to get some fabric so I can make her and the other two dogs their very own scarves!

April 9, 2015

Journal Swap Creative...

I LOVE sending and receiving snail mail. There is nothing better than going to the post office to pick up your mail (yes, I live in the middle of nowhere and mail doesn't get delivered to your door) and finding something fun inside your mail box instead of the usual bills and junk mail. Thus, when I found out that Cassie and Anne were going to be hosting a Journal Swap I was all over that.

I got paired up with Jenny from Dancin' With A Dolly and I am so grateful for this swap for pairing us up so I could discover her blog! She lives in Long Island and the next time I make it to NYC (soon, I hope!) she's going to be my tour guide and show me all the hidden gems that the city has to offer. She is also a woman of many talents - photographer, small business owner, writer,  make-up artist, AND she's a wife and mama. Oh, and she also hates Angelina Jolie so she wins all the things and it clearly means were meant to be besties.

#TeamAniston. She gets me

Jenny sent me the cutest note (Target?!) and a journaling kit along with a journal - how true is the quote on the journal?!. I had a 'sneak peak' of my journal on IG yesterday (shameless plug) - I've been doing Helene's #30photosinbetween photo challenge and yesterday's prompt was 'Word Play' so the journal was perfect for it. I can't wait to get writing!

I feel terrible because I thought the $11.00 I spent on shipping was crazy but her package was over $16.00 - why is sending something across the border SO expensive?!

I should note that while shopping for a journal for Jenny I bought myself TWO, even though I already have a couple AND I knew I would be getting one from her soon. I couldn't help myself! The one journal is a travel journal and I can't wait to get using it. I'll be bringing it with me to the Twin Cities this weekend to get started on it.  I ended up giving the other journal to a friend of mine last night when we met up to discuss a possible job opportunity. We discussed how we both want to journal but most of the time end up writing lists, ideas that pop into our head, etc. instead of actually journaling. I view my blog as my own personal journal and I actually hate handwriting for too long - I get bored of it way too easily so list making is where its at for me. I'm never without a notebook and I'm sure it won't be long before my new one is all filled up!

Love the Here and Now

April 2, 2015

April Goals...

You know the saying 'April showers bring May flowers'? Well it rained last night in O-town and then this morning I woke up to bitter cold with crazy winds and to top it all off it is snowing. Snowing! If we could just skip over April and go straight to May that would be fine by me. I don't like rain (I hate getting my hair wet...) and I am so over snow. Bring on the sunshine, please!

Side note: I just realized today's date and it's craaazy to think that its already been a year since my entire family roadtripped to Edmonton for my cousin CC's Wednesday Wedding - I swear it was just yesterday! I think I say that about everything though... Anywhoodle, on to my April goals and my disastrous lack of progress on any of my March goals (spoiler alert)

March Goals 

1. Send out 5 forms of snail mail.
Done! And just in the knick of time (as in on Tuesday...)

2. Have a wine/crafting night with Kelsey AND Nikki/Mallory.
1/2 completed this one. Nikki, Mallory and I had our wine/crafting night but Kels and I never did get together for one. Whomp whomp

3. Make plans for a Beaver Cove Town Council meeting.
I talked to the girls about getting together but since the Twin went to Disney World with her old nanny family (and left me behind- rude! ha) and just got back late last week we couldn't make any concrete plans. We're shooting for this month now

4. Purchase the perfect chair to complete my new blogging space.
Ughhh - no! I just haven't found one that I LOVE and since they are around $200 for one chair I don't want to purchase something that I don't absolutely love. The hunt continues...

5. Find a way to make an extra $300/month.
No dice. I have been cleaning out my closets/doing some Spring cleaning that has brought me almost $200 so thats nice but won't happen every single month so back to the drawing board 

6. Do 3 sewing projects aside from my weekly sewing club projects.
Yeah. About that... I actually only even made it to one sewing club class in March. BUT in my defense last weeks was canceled due to our instructor having an emergency she needed to take care of. AND I haven't been anywhere to get any fabric (excuses, excuses. I know)

7. Take a 'staycation'.
Welll fuck. I completely forgot about this! I NEED a staycation so bad - I do have a couple days in April blocked off as 'maybe' days off that may be turning into my staycation now 

8. Get my passport renewed.
YES! I submitted my application when I took Krickit into 'the city' for surgery at the beginning of March and was shocked when it showed up a little over two weeks later. They had estimated that it wouldn't get to me until mid April so it was such a sense of relief for it to arrive early and be safe in my hands. Being passport-less (even if it was only for 2 weeks) was terrible

9. Make better use of my time in the mornings before work .
I like sleep. That is all
10. Spend more time with Krickit.
We went for a few walks but wasn't able to do as much as I would have liked since she had to recover from surgery. Now that she's fully recovered (and the weather will hopefully start getting nicer) we can start going for daily walks!

Well then. If we're going off my goals then March was a completel failure. BUT if I look at the bigger picture it wasn't all that bad. I got my passport renewed (and back in the same month), got Krickit in for surgery (and she recovered amazingly well), got my taxes in to my accountant earlier than I ever have before (and already found out my refund amount - wahoo!), got back into a fitness routine, met up with my friend and finally met her son (something we talked about doing every month since last June), and completed some tasks at work that have been on my to do list for over a year. A year! 

1. Make better use of my time in the mornings
I'm at work every day by 7:15. My first alarm goes off at 5:00 am, yet I usually laze around in bed until 6:15/6:30 (sometimes later - ughhh) and then I'm rushing to get out the door on time. It's terrible! If I'm waking up at 5:00 then why am I not being productive?! It starts now!

2. Start running again!
Registration opened yesterday for the RnR half marathon in Vegas. Last night I met up with friends in 'the city'  for supper to see my friend Laura and her daughter Hayden, who made a quick trip down to SK from Edmonton. While at supper Laura mentioned that she is doing the Vegas RnR and that another friend of ours is thinking of doing it as well - how awesome is that?! I hadn't seen Laura in almost three years and now I might get to see her twice in one year! Now I just need to convince the Twin to register so there is no turning back. Regardless of whether I register right now or not I want to get out running - its calling to me. (I'll probably regret this in a couple of weeks...)

3. Send out 10 forms of snail mail
Keep an eye on your mailboxes snail mail friends. And if you want to be a snail mail friend just send me your address - I love sending snail mail! (krmathison@hotmail.com)

4. 10K steps per day

5. Read two books off the 2015 Reading Challenge
Reading has taken a back burner in my life lately which is craaazy considering how much I love to read. I want to rectify this and what better way than to do it while also crossing things off another list!

6. Do yoga 4 x per week with my Yoga Studio app
I've fallen in love with yoga y'all. I just wish there were an actual yoga studio around this area for me to attend classes!

7. Start another round of the Whole30
After I get back from the Twin Cities (if we actually go - my 4 year old nieces behaviour lately has not been stellar and she is in danger of getting the entire trip cancelled if she continues it!) it is going to happen. It will actually be right around the same time as we did it last year - what a co-inki-dink  (sorry, had to)  

8. Complete 5 things off my Spring Bucket List 
Even though it still feels like Winter. Maybe if I start completing things off the list Spring will actually appear? One can hope...

9. Complete 5 things off my 28 Before 28 List
I only have a little under 4 months to get those 28 things crossed off and if I want to do that then I need to start now (or yesterday...)

10. Get a massage (not counting the one from April 1st)
I went for a massage yesterday afternoon for the first time in FOUR years. I used to go every few months and don't know why I stopped - it was heavenly. My benefits through work cover up to $500 a year for massages so I need to start getting my moneys worth. My job can be very stressful so a massage once a month would help so much. My back hurts today from the pressure but also feels good (if that makes any sense) - I don't feel as stiff as before so that is a definite plus 

What are your April goals?