Thursday, June 1, 2017

ANYTIME IS BINGE TIME!

Remember the TV Guide? It would be tucked in the newspaper and every week my brother and I pulled it out to see if our fav shows were on the same time that week AND if they were new. Can you believe TV Guide is still around? Crazy. 

The only way to see your fav show that week was to make sure you knew what time it was on or to "tape" it. Another act that seems totally ancient and "taping a show" is completely foreign to my kids. I guess PVR is the next "taping" but even then, my kids don't even know what PVR is because we have basic cable and really what is on basic cable that is PVR worth?! 

Netflix has revolutionized how we watch tv. No longer are cartoons only on at 6am or Saturday mornings, they are ready to watch at anytime and anywhere. Honestly, God bless the afternoons where the kids need a break, I need a break and Netflix cartoons SAVE ME! However, there was something exciting about waiting a whole week for the new episode of your favourite show to air. A concept that seems weird to the kids.

Last weekend was the Great Glebe Garage Sale and Ottawa Race Weekend - my fav weekend of the year. Thousands of people embark on the Glebe in Ottawa and sell and shop for treasures. I set up a Keep It Beautiful Shop - PopUp Shop and sold my pillows, makeup cases and prints. 


In the afternoon we got the kids ready to run the 2km race. They were pumped and we were thrilled that they wanted to run the race to feel powerful and strong. 

The next morning, Mr. Fix-It was running the 1/2 marathon. He'd been training all winter (in so much snow!) and was hoping for a PB. However, Sunday turned out to be Ottawa's first scorcher of the season and he knew a few kilometres in that it wasn't going to be his race. At the 10km mark he decided to turn the race into something else and called our older son off the sidelines to run the last half of the race with him. 11km later, a very strong and tired father-son team crossed the finish line. Our 8 year-old had no idea how far 11km was, he didn't have proper running gear on, had only ever run 2km straight (the day before) and he didn't know the course. But, he knew his Daddy wanted him to run with him and they trusted each other. Melt my heart. 

Shortly after the race our older son needed Gatorade, food AND Netflix. He asked me if his legs were supposed to feel tingly. He was so tired! These are exactly the times that you need cartoons at the press of a button. When you need to chill out, rest your bod and watch your fav shows. 

Right now the kids are binging Nicky, Dicky & Dawn - it's like a younger version of Saved By the Bell. 

King Julien is another fan fav of theirs. It's actually pretty hilarious. Some of the jokes go right over the kids heads ;)

Mr. Fix-It and I just started watching the new episodes of House of Cards. Oh man that show is Ah-mazing! So twisted and so addictive. 

Orange is the New Black starts soon and we finished the new episodes of Scandal. Another binge worthy, wine drinking show that is available at your fingertips. Anytime, anywhere. 

God bless you Netflix!

*Disclosure - I'm part of the Netflix StreamTeam and that allows me to share exciting Netflix news and views with you. And, ensure you're all as addicted to Netflix as I am ;) Thanks for supporting the brands that support this blog.


Sunday, April 30, 2017

NETFLIX & VALUES


Can Netflix teach your kids values? Bold question really. Kids values are shaped by everything around them. As a mom, my hope is that their core values, what is deep inside them is nurtured from the beginning. At home. With their family. With their friends. However, their values will be tested and questioned as they grow. From who they hang out with to what they watch. The goal really, is to hope that nature and nurture work together to help shape their life skills.

I feel like just sitting down with your kids and watching the shows they love,  helps them feel like you are interested in the shows and that you love them too (even though sometimes I know you are counting down until you get to curl up with a new episode of Scandal). They feel connected to you. Sure, it's not the only way you should connect with your kids but it's an outlet of opportunity. Check out this cool social experience video showing teens and parents coming together over Netflix.

My kiddies are regularly watching Home: Adventures with Tip & Oh these days. There is a great episode about bullying on there. Honestly, that word makes my stomach turn. To think that your kid could experience such pain, makes my anxiety go through the roof. But, obviously talking to your kids about it, what to do and using any outlet to drill it home that bullying is wrong is crucial. Episode 6 of Home has a good lesson.

Have you watched 13 Reasons Why on Netflix yet? I haven't and I'm avoiding it. Why? Truthfully, I'm not 100% sure but I know that when I watch it, there are stories in there that are going to wrench my gut, that will leave me tossing at night. I know that it's a show that's getting a lot of attention right now because its real. Teens struggle. The struggle is real. If you have watched it, I would love to hear your thoughts. I'll let you know when I do. I need to package my babies up in a bubble. As much as I want them to be successful and eventually leave the nest...I'm also okay with having them live at home forever. Um, sorta ;)

Here is a quick cheat sheet to use. If you feel like your kiddies need a refresher on something specific or a good lesson. Check these shows out...
Keep it Beautiful.


Disclosure: I'm part of the Netflix Stream Team. All my Netflix addictions are my own and I love sharing them with you. Thank you for continuing to support the brands that support this blog.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

BIG GIRL ROOM & GUEST ROOM PLAN & SWAP

Decorating is fun. You know what’s really fun? Decorating a girl’s room. Even better, decorating it in the spring. Spring is one of my favourite times to work on the house. It feels so good to crack open the windows, organize a closet, open up a can of paint and give er. I can't be the only one that gets the spring DIY feeling because Home Depot, Rona and Lowes are packed on the weekends right now and I would say that the paint line and lumber lines are the longest. I digress ;)
Before our baby girl was born, our older son had his room (which then turned to the guest room, and now the big girl room), the guest room was now the boys room and the nursery was our middle guy’s.


Each time the rooms have been done, I flutter with excitement. When our baby girl arrived, we decided to put the boys in the bigger guest room and make it theirs

While I don’t think our middle guy remembers the process, both boys love their room. I remember that feeling as a kid. Feeling special in your bedroom. Feeling like you owned a piece of the house. It was your space. Fast forward to today, the boys are still happy as clams to be bunking together and they’ve line the walls with Pok√©mon and Star Wars posters, filled the toy bins with toys and junk – did I say that out loud?!..and made it theirs. 

Their special place. I love the room at the back. It’s an addition to the house and the windows overlook the backyard. The light is gorgeous and it’s the perfect spot for them to read and play. 

One day I’m sure it might be a space for a couple of desks or to house one of their beds when they decide to take down their bunks.
When our baby girl turned four last month, she all of a sudden didn’t feel so baby anymore. Her crib to toddler bed was jammed with stufties, there was little room for this growing girl to sleep and she felt too big for her nursery

She, like her mama is a collector of clothes, jewels and all round randomness. It was time for a bigger space for her. Time to get her organized. Enter in a project for Mr. Fix-It and I. Yes!
The only issue we needed to get around was that we needed to carve out the time to do a swap of the guest room and the nursery all at the same time. So, essentially we needed to do two rooms from top to bottom at once. Yowza. We needed a plan. We needed to buy everything, get organized and be ready to do a marathon swap. Oh and wipe away my tears as the crib came down for the last time. The dresser that had a facelift went out on the curb for someone else to use and love. Pass the tissue.
But on to new milestones. Enter in Big Girl Room and Guest Room swap plan.

Paint Colours - Benjamin Moore Cadillac Pink & Full Blossom (accent wall - all little girls need a fabulously bright pink accent wall). Finding a soft pink can be tough. A quick tip: go with a pink on the paint chit that is the lightest in it's row of colours. I promise you, it will definitely look pink. Otherwise, you may have an entire room looking like Hubba Bubba and not necessarily the look you want if you are looking for something soft.

The Bed - It's gorgeous. Jaime. 

I'm really interested in online mattress companies. Have you ordered your mattress online. I've been doing some research and the Leesa mattress has me intrigued for our master bedroom. 

Dresser, & Shelf - Flipping the shelf on it's side and making a window bench like I did for the boys.

Kitchen - Santa brought this a couple of years ago and I'm looking forward to moving it upstairs into her room. BTW, it's awesome if you are looking for a gift. It gets lots of play action.

The new guest room (old nursery) is the smallest bedroom. It makes a great nursery, a cozy guest room or an office. I new I wanted to paint it two of my fav colours. We have the colours in our living room, dining room and kitchen. The light is beautiful in the room so I knew it would be perfectly grey. The armoire for the old guest room was being moved into the knew room, along with the bed, the linen and all of our framed poetry. Have you heard of Matt Robinson? He's a incredibly talented poet in Halifax, Nova Scotia and his framed poetry will be moving from the old guest room into a gallery wall in this room.
So, you'll have to stay tuned next week for the reveal. Mr. Fix-It and I worked for 15 hours straight while the kids went up to the lake with my folks. We listened to music, cracked a few beers, ordered pizza and worked on the rooms. It's our thing. The look on our daughter's face when she walked into her new room was adorbs. 
Spring has sprung my friends and I would love to hear what your spring decorating, DIYs and organizing plans are. 
Can't wait to show you the rooms.
Keep it Beautiful.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

OMG…long time no write. Where did April go? Where did the end of March go? How is it already May? Dang time moves fast. Honestly. Work, the kids, activities, and just all round life has prevented me from connecting with all of you lately. Every night I’ve been collapsing on the couch around ten, staring at my computer and telling myself that I need to pick it up and connect. Connect with my blog, write what feels good and connect with you. But, at that time of night I just don’t have it in me. But, I’m re-committing myself to carve out time. Creating that space in the week.

I love blogging. I love sharing ideas, connecting with people that love beautiful spaces, love a fabulous recipe and love when someone shows you that it can be done while living the busyness of life. I miss you. I miss sharing my thoughts and ideas and sending them out into this little corner of the internet called Keep It Beautiful Designs. So here I am. When I first started blogging, I was determined to make a go of it. And I did and it grew into something that I had dreamed of. I dutifully followed the “blogging” rules that said I needed to blog 3 times a week to stay connected to my audience. I needed to get my voice out there in every corner of social media. I needed to attend every conference to figure out how to get ahead, to have sidebar ads that would generate the traffic. So many rules. So many rules that told me what I HAD to do to be successful. However, I’ve learned over the last five years that yes, when you first start a business it is hard. It takes complete 100% dedication to lift it off the ground. However, I’ve also learned that you don’t have to follow someone else’s rules to be successful. Blogging has changed. Social media over the last five years has changed and I believe that you can choose how you weigh in.
I have created a successful business. I’ve also learned to carve out my space. My rules. Sure, there are many opportunities I have had to turn down or wanted to do with my little slice of the internet, however I also have other areas in my life that I work just as hard at. I have a full-time day job that as I climb the ladder, puts more demands on me. I have small children, a husband, extended family, friends, fitness and the list goes on. Life is busy. I know you all get it. You all have the same, similar and more demands. But, I am truly dedicated to the passion of creating beautiful spaces. There is something about decorating a room in your home, setting a gorgeous place setting or finishing off that DIY that makes my heart flutter. So, I am dedicated to continuing to share my ideas and listen to yours. You have all been so dedicated to this blog and I thank you for it. I may not blog three times a week every week but it hasn’t stopped you from connecting with me, coming back and I thank you for that. 
So here we go. I have so many things to share with you. Baby steps. First up. Taking our baby girl’s room from nursery to big girl. We also have a bathroom renovation going on as we speak at the cottage and more.
Keep it Beautiful.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

NO DAMSEL IN DISTRESS


This is our girl. She's beautiful. She's feisty. She's brave. She's ours. On February 20th she had an accident tobogganing. She broke her femur. HER FEMUR! It's the biggest bone in your body and some argue the most painful to break. From the minute the break happened to 4 weeks later with her cast off, she has shown us how powerful and resilient she is. She is no damsel in distress.

Our baby girl is all things girly. She loves everything pink and purple, lipgloss, dresses and baby dolls. She also loves to play super heroes with her brothers and wants to be doing anything that they do. She declares herself as "super girl" and we love it. We love that she is girly but already, at her age, understands that she can do anything. Girls are powerful. She is powerful.

There are a lot of really bad shows out there. Whether they are geared towards boys or girls, there are bad shows directed at both. Our kids love watching shows. Really, are there that many kids out there that don't love tv and movies? We all need to be aware of what our kids are watching. Sure, each child has their own taste in what they like but I do love that Netflix offers a wide range of shows and many of them with strong female characters. 

Our girl is drawn to shows like Project Mc2 where a group of girls are working to solve mysteries and Glitter Girls - these girls are full of all things girly AND are defending the earth. Lego Friends is also a fav in our house. The girls promote creating, building and inclusion of friends. 



What are your girls watching on Netflix? Any favs? Do they make your girls feel powerful? Speaking of girl power...I'm all over Scandal. Are you? They have new episodes right now. I'm addicted. 


Keep it Beautiful.


Disclosure:  I'm part of the Netflix Stream Team.  Netflix is addictive and we all love it. I love sharing my fav shows with you and your family every month.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

MAPLE SYRUP SALAD SENSATIONS!


Hello lovelies!! It's been a little while and good to be back! At the end of February our baby girl broke her leg tobogganing. It was awful. Her femur. Brutal. But, she's amazing AND we just got back from an awesome family vacation in Mexico. Yesterday, I spent the entire day doing laundry and my kiddies woke up at 10:30am! They were zonked from arriving back in Ottawa so late. In any event, I totally indulged on vacation. TOTALLY! It's the sign of a good vacation, however when I got on the scale and saw that the numbers were up by 9 pounds. YUP, nine!! I wanted to die. I've been working on getting back to the gym and eating clean since Jan and lost a bunch of pounders but 9 pounds up in one week? Oh Lordy. So much food, so much beer. However...sign of a good vacay and back on track today, right? Right. I have a yummy salad recipe to share with you today in case you're looking for a spring kick start. Shorts and tank season is quickly approaching! Easter is also around the corner and this would be a great addition to your menu. Speaking of Easter, I'm crushing on this buffet. The colour is gorg! These beauty Wayfair dishes and I'm going to order this adorable banner for the mantel. 

March is maple syrup season. Who doesn't love Canadian made syrup? Heaven. A local farmer at the cottage taps some of the trees on our road for the sugary goodness. It's really cool for the kids to see where the syrup on their pancakes begins.


The thing about this salad is that using real maple syrup is a must! 

The dressing will knock your socks off. Here's what you need....

- 1/4 cup of real maple syrup
- 2 tablespoon of dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 cup of good olive oil
- salt and pepper

Mix the ingredients (except the oil) and then whisk in the oil. I shake everything up in a little mason jar. It's the perfect size.

For the salad, I added mixed greens, sliced pears, black berries and mini tomatoes. It's simple and delicious. You could add some toasted pecans on there too. Yum!



Pour on your dressing and VOILA! Maple syrup deliciousness!! 

Now that we're back from vacation and the snow is melting, it's time to start on our baby girl's big girl room. As per usual, I have my eye on all things pretty from Wayfair.ca. Shocker.  We're besties. I'm gathering up some furniture ideas for there that I'll share with you soon. Now, go find yourself some Canadian made maple syrup and whip up this salad. Yum!

Keep it Beautiful.

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Wayfair.ca. As always, thank you for supporting the brands that support this blog. Love you!

Monday, February 6, 2017

A VALENTINE'S DAY MANTEL

Where did the weekend go? How is it Monday already?! It was the first week of Winterlude here in Ottawa where the canal is freshly groomed, the snow slides are slick and it's an Ottawa party. Goodtimes. If you've never been, you must try to get to it sometime. Winterlude is always the first three weeks in Feb. 


I did get in a little V-day decorating...

I don't usually do much except give the mantle a little shake up. The kids love it and why not spread the love? I used the red dogwood branches I had from Christmas and picked up this garland and rose balls at the dollar store. Honestly, it can't get much easier.



Did any of you make the door hearts I shared on the weekend? Easy peasy. You can also make a "love box". Again, it's easy, inexpensive and the kids adore it. Think I'll add a small little prezzie in there for Mr. Fix-it too. Warm hearts is what Valentine's Day is all about. Oh and heart shaped pizzas. Cute!



Keep it Beautiful.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

DIY VALENTINE DOOR HEARTS


Hi guys, I don't normally do a Saturday post but wanted to get this one out to you in case you wanted to think about it over the weekend. Who doesn't love getting a Valentine's Day card? Remember when you were kids and hoped for a love note from your crush? While I don't have DIY Valentine's for you, I do have a cute idea to do for your mini Valentine's at home.


Door hearts are so easy and your Valentine's will love it. All you need is construction paper, markers and tape. Every day, write something you love about your little valentine, or something they are good at. Each day they can look at their door and see all the messages of love just for them. Easy, cute and spreads the love.

I went to the dollar store and bought a pack of construction paper and while I was watching tv one night, I cut out hearts for each of my kids and wrote the messages. 


You can do as many as you want really, whether you start now or a few days from now. Each night before you go to bed, just stick a new heart on their door for when they wake up. You'll make their hearts smile :)




Do you decorate for Valentine's Day? I like to add a few touches here and there so I'll show you my V-day mantle on Monday.
Keep it Beautiful.

Friday, January 27, 2017

WHAT'S ON THE TUBE THIS MONTH!

Hey guys. How's January treating you? Can you believe it's almost done? Yikes. Honestly, I just put away the last little bit of lingering Christmas decor. It's been down for weeks but hanging around on the dining room table just begging to be organized. Our tiny storage room in the basement is busting at the seams. Ugh! We so need an organization system down there. From hammers to skates, golf equipment to Christmas. Old house = no storage. Grrr. Do you have storage issues?

In any event, during the month of January we've been watching a whole lot of Netflix. Woot! Hello...the 80s called - Harry and the Hendersons is streaming on Netflix! Classic. Our kiddies really liked it. I loved that movie as a kid. Watching it as an adult, I realized that it's not as good as you thought it was but my kids thought it was just as good as I did years ago. 
I also saw that Back to the Future is on there. Mark it down for movie night. 

The kids are going to think that car is awesome...I hope?!

Our oldest is in that stage where he doesn't want to watch the "baby shows" with his younger siblings but sorry kid, no Walking Dead for you. There is a new show called, Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events. 

It's based on a series of books and the sets and scenery are amazing. Super good for those in-betweeners (don't think that's a word but you get it).
Our big guy has started to check out some of the shows that are geared more to adults but are kid appropriate. He and I love watching Chef's Table (sooo good). 

Sometimes we put it on in the kitchen while we make dinner. We might be making plain 'ole noodles but he still feels like a Michelin star chef while watching and cooking.

There is another show that's new called One Day at a Time

It's like an old-school sitcom that brought families together with laugh out loud humour and more importantly, relevant teachable moments. If you have someone in your family that is starting to walk the line between kids and teen shows then check this show out.
 
Mr. Fix-It and I are binge watching Quantico. 

I would say the acting is not great. Well, it's okay...but we're hooked. It's the story line. Yup, it's pretty far fetched but we're liking the whole FBI trainee facing off with the FBI as a whole. Yes!


That's it folks. Happy watching. It's that time of year for all things cozy. I have a few things in the hopper that I want to share with you soon. Happy weekend!


Keep it Beautiful.
xo
Disclosure: I'm part of the Netflix #StreamTeam. Who doesn't love Netflix? I'm happy to share all the latest info every month.


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