Small Prints – Big Impressions

Smallprint Vancouver North, which specializes in handcrafted jewellery that captures the fingerprint of a loved one in silver. No moulds are taken; which means the silver keepsake has literally been touched by your loved one. Hand and footprints, drawings, and love notes can also be turned into silver jewellery. All items are handcrafted and hand engraved by Mahnaz (Naz), the owner, in her North Vancouver studio, from start to finish!

Heartfelt Impressions

When Naz reached out to me wanting to create some lifelong keepsake jewelry pieces I was floored. I had seen her work on other people and on social media so I was ecstatic to be working with her to create some unique items that were meaningful to me. The process was very easy. First, Naz sent over an inkless print kit where I was able to run a (wet wipe) a Magic Inkless Print Kit over Ryerson’s hands and feet and then press them onto this ‘special paper’. Then voila! His prints appeared (see image below).

small prints vancouver

Making A Mark

Additionally, I got Ryerson to write down his name and the word ‘MOM’ as this is something I wanted to be imprinted onto a charm for me to be able to wear as he grows. Something so simple yet meaningful, it seemed like the perfect choice to get on a piece of jewelry. I then took a photo of each of the pieces of paper where Ry wrote the names and emailed them to Naz. The rest was left in her magical hands.

The two pieces I had done up were a bracelet with the word ‘MOM’ and on the other side Ry’s handprint. Additionally, a keychain was made with both of Ry’s footprints and his name that he spelt out. On the back of the keychain was the date and his age so we were able to know exactly when the prints were taken.

small prints vancouver

Perfect for Every Day & Special Occasions

Smallprint Vancouver North offers a beautiful collection of handmade sterling silver keepsakes that are perfect at any time of the year.

Consider a unique handcrafted sterling silver jewelry piece or  personalized keepsake for:

  • Mother’s Day & Father’s Day
  • Birthday or a new birth
  • Engagement, Wedding or an Anniversary
  • Valentine’s Day
  • Christmas
  • Graduation
  • or even just because! There are so many reasons why these pieces make a great gift.

Smallprint Vancouver North also offers Memory Treasures for the bereaved. These handcrafted and personalized memorial keepsakes can provide comfort to those with loved ones they are about to lose as well as preserving the memory of those who have already sadly passed.

Who Can Get Their Prints Done?

Anyone really! From children as young as newborns to their grandparents, loved ones of all ages can get their prints taken for your Smallprint keepsake. And did you know that you can also take your furry friends prints? Anything you’d like to get an impression of you can realistically.

small prints vancouver

Experiences that last a lifetime

When you choose a Smallprint Keepsake, you are getting the experience in addition to your personalized accessory. And it really only takes a matter of moments. The creation process happens right in front of your eyes and you’ll have a memory of exactly where you were when your special piece was made. I loved the idea that Ry was a bit older so I was able to get his hand and footprints in addition to some of his writing. I think it’s also adorable that you’re able to get an actual drawing your child has created done up and recreated into an everlasting piece of jewelry.

Which Smallprint Vancouver North pieces would you love to receive? What special memory would you like to carry with you most? Let me know in the comments below.

If you want more information on the Smallprint brand you can either visit the Facebook page or  Instagram.
Smallprint Vancouver North in the media.

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Smallprint Vancouver North however, all opinions expressed are my own. 

Hair That’s Crafted

Crafting The Perfect Hair

As many people would know I haven’t changed my hairstyle in over a decade. And yes, that may seem a long time for most people for me I stick to what works. I’ve never been a fan of having someone touch my hair let alone getting it cut. Luckily for me, a long-time family friend who also happens to be a hairstyle had the daunting task to get me to try and step out of my comfort zone and work her magic on my long locks.

south surrey hair salon

Come for the Experience, Leave with Confidence

For those who aren’t familiar, Craft Academy Salon is located in South Surrey (with another location in East Vancouver) and specializes in providing its clientele with killer hair regardless if you’re just wanting a new hairstyle or to a beautiful blowout or banging new bob.  Guests who visit Craft Academy Salon can expect excellent customer service, a welcome tray including snack options upon arrival and an in-depth signature consultation, beauty haircare coaching, a welcoming, relaxed and enjoyable setting with passionate stylists and support staff capable of recommending the most innovative products and on-trend services available.

craft academy salon

Preparing a Masterpiece

Upon my first visit Heather basically ‘interviewed’ me if you will during our consultation. She asked me a handful of in-depth questions pertaining to me as a person, my hair goals and just overall lifestyle. I like to call this hair therapy. You strip everything down to the roots (no pun intended) and get down to what your hair needs, wants and desires are. You then go over the suggestions your stylist has and what she envisions and thinks is possible for your hair. Whether you’re a brunette and want to go platinum blonde they would never say ‘no’ to you but offer some of the best suggestions on how to achieve healthy hair while doing heavy bleaching or maybe another alternative that would suit you and your lifestyle better.

After we went over what my goals were and what I envisioned we set aside some time for my next appointment to begin the hair process but before I left Heather provided a quick scalp treatment called Kerastase Serum Extensionist. This bottle of goodness drenches your scalp with moisture and helps to strengthen the hair fibres to increase hair growth and protect your scalp from seasonal dryness. It is easy to use! Apply the serum with the applicator to the areas you experience oiliness, itch or dry scalp and within a couple of weeks your scalp will be noticeably happier and your hair will be growing stronger and longer! Just what I needed during this time of year.

Stylist at Work

Upon my next appointment – it was time to make the magic happen! At the chair, Heather did a custom hand-painted highlight and lowlight for my hair colour. This type of balayage was created to accentuate my new haircut and one that would look beautiful either straight for day-to-day or curled for a bigger event. Then at the sink, my hair was rinsed and a shine-enhancing gloss was applied as well as a Smartbond Treatment, followed by a relaxing scalp massage using one of the salon’s favourite Kerastase products.

Heather then suggested a few of their go-to products to keep your hair luscious and honestly just in good health after you leave the salon. Since I do straighten my hair every day or curl it my hair is constantly getting played with and having damage done by high heat. The blowdry cream that was suggested is Kerastase Nectar Thermique, which is to help with dry hair and to increase suppleness and shine while protecting the hair from heat styling, blowout to curls or straightening.  The end result will feel soft to touch as be so radiant and with regular use your hair is getting a hydrating treatment!

I, of course, needed a good hairspray recommendation and dry shampoo (because let me tell you this girl can’t go more than a day max two without washing her hair – let’s just say oily city). Besides Heather, she mentioned all the girls are in love with these products and use them daily themselves. The Kerastase Laque Couture hairspray is so lightweight that you can’t overuse it! A quick spritz of this beautifully scented luxury spray will add extra shine for your events and lock down the hair in all weather conditions. Keep your hair looking beautiful without a helmet! And drum roll, please… RandCo Skyline! THE BEST dry shampoo around (from what I was told). Puff it in to absorb scalp oils before bed to wake up with fresh clean hair! Apply it on day one after a blowout to add a gentle lift near the scalp. Use it to make your hair look full without backcombing! So many great uses for this gem!

Overall, my experience and knowledge I left Craft with were amazing! The entire staff is super hands-on and friendly that you get to know each and every person who is in the salon. I, of course, cannot thank Heather enough for doing such a fabulous job on my hair! I am definitely holiday-ready and just freshened up for the season and New Year to come!
If you’re looking for a refresh or just want to talk about your options make sure to call Craft Academy Salon in South Surrey and ask for Heather Hall! Tell them I sent you and you’ll be given a 15% off promo of your next service! *Offer subject to change at the discretion of the stylist.

Here are a few before and after photos of what we did to my hair!

Before

After

Craft Academy Salon
15240 BC-10 Unite 102, Surrey, BC
craftacademysalon.com

Jars by Jodi – Creating Magic in the Kitchen for the Entire Family

Jars by Jodi

I’ve got a major sweet tooth… there is no lie or shame in me saying that. So when I was originally introduced to Jars by Jodi a few years ago it was a match made in sweet-tooth heaven!

Jars by Jodi was originally created by none other than Jodi herself, when her husband and she were newly married and on a limited budget. They wanted to provide quality Christmas gifts to their extended family without breaking the bank. With the help of the trusty friend ‘Google’, Jodi searched for “quality gifts on a budget” and mason jar mixes popped up. They were a hit! A few years of growth later (…and a couple of kids later…) Jodi now has her mason jar cookie mixes available for purchase at various markets each year, in 5 local retail stores year-round, as well as for local pickup at her home in Pitt Meadows.

What are Jars by Jodi?

Jars by Jodi is a small business, located in Pitt Meadows, that sells all the baking ingredients for cookies or desserts, all layered in a mason jar.

Each holiday season Jodi comes out with your traditional Christmas mixes including Gingersnap, Christmas M&M’s and Christmas Mini Egg along with a handful of others. This year Ry and I opted to go with the Snickerdoodles and Christmas Mini Eggs. Well, let’s just say after the cookies were made I think they last less than 24 hours… which resulted in me eating vegetables and salad all the next day. Balance right?

Fun for the whole family

What Jodi has done by creating Jars by Jodi is allowing families and individuals not to stress about the mix and mess of making a batch of cookies. All you need is a bowl, spoon and a few other ingredients like milk, eggs, butter, vanilla you name it. Clean up is done in a matter of minutes! And most people already have those few items laying around their house. This has allowed families to max a batch of their favourite cookies in less time and enjoy the tasty benefits.

Having a four-year-old requires A LOT of patience and some days well it’s not there. So having something like this allows us to have some fun in the kitchen and lets him get messy so to speak and then watch what he’s created come to life! And let’s face it he’s the one whos going to be eating more of these anyways.

If you’re looking for something to do on a rainy afternoon, looking for a yummy treat when having guests over or looking for a unique and delicious gift look no further then Jars by Jodi!

For more information visit: https://jarsbyjodi.ca/ 

You can also find her on Facebook and Instagram!

A Bite for Every Occasion – Graze & Cardamom

Eat.Graze.Love

Graze & Cardamom brings the Australian ‘grazing’ trend to the Lower Mainland. With their luxury styled boxes and lavish grazing tables, they don’t settle for average. Let them spruce up any of your events with beautiful boxes and grazing tables lavished will all your favourite goodies. They source local, fresh, and premium produce, cheese, meats, & more with your taste in mind.

Graze & Cardamom

Grazing Boxes

Friday night with the girls? Date night? Pre-wedding festivities? Corporate Events? Open Houses? They’ve got you covered! For us, we were celebrating a Friday night in post-engagement. When you have a child romantic date nights out aren’t so common and become far and few in-between. So when we could have a little celebration right in the comforts of our home with our little one next to us it made for a lovely evening. Plus our toddler ate some of the boxes content so I’ll call that a win-win!

But regardless of what you’re celebrating, these graze boxes and tables are the perfect addition. Incorporating all the things from grazing platters into a simple box. They truly customize boxes to cater to what you exactly crave and need at that moment!Graze & Cardamom

What’s Included?

Filled with a mixture of different cheese, wholesome dips, a variety of crackers, fresh fruit, dried fruit, vegetables, meats, olives, nuts, pickles, something sweet, and more you can tailor these boxes to your every taste and preference. For us, we like to go heavy on the cheese and crackers less on the vegetables! But the way G&C customizes the boxes you get a little taste of everything and it pairs so well with one another. Let’s just say I was wanting more for the few days that followed!

Need a vegan box? They also offer that as well! The great thing about G&C is that they truly customize your box to ensure all items are diet-specific whether you’re gluten-free or vegan-friendly from the cheese, crackers, and everything in between. Rest assured you won’t need to comprise what dietary values you have.

If you’re interested in trying these boxes out and are curious about what size to order – here are the options they offer.

Box Sizes:

  • Small (2-4 people)

  • Medium (up to 12 people)
    Box Dimensions: 19” x 14”

  • Large (up to 18 people)
    Box Dimensions: 26” x 18”

Graze & Cardamom

Grazing Tables

On the other hand, if you’re looking for a more lavished set up G&C’s luxurious graze tables are specially created and crafted for each event. All graze tables are customizable to cater to your guests whether it be a smaller group of 20 or to larger wedding parties of upwards of 100+ people.

At this time they offer three different types of graze tables: 1 metre, 1.5 metres, and 2 metres graze stations. If you’re looking for another size, please contact G&C directly to discuss further.

All graze tables include the same as the boxes just in a wider quantity and larger value. Items included are fresh and dried fruit, vegetables, cheeses, wholesome dips, meats, premium nuts, artisan bread varieties, crackers, olives, pickles, something sweet, and much more.

Graze & CardamomThe Perfect Bite

Our family couldn’t have been happier with our Friday night grazing box. Paired with a nice glass of wine, kid-friendly movie and good company we were set. Honestly, I’d even order a box after a long week alongside a nice glass of wine to indulge myself (and not share with anyone hehe). Besides that – these boxes are truly great for any type of occasion or simply just because – you don’t need to have a reason!

Thank you G&C for providing us with a small box to enjoy and celebrate!

This post was in partnership with G&C. All opinions are my own. The product was gifted in exchange for a post.

Charlie’s Colorforms City on Netflix // Spark Creativity

Charlie’s Colorforms City

As a parent keeping your kiddo entertained on a day-to-day basis is half the battle. I’ll be the first to admit screen-time is prevalent in our household and a lot of the time needed for my mental sanity. No, I don’t just stick Ryerson in-front of the TV but when I need to get work done or have a conference call you best believe he’s going to be on the iPad or watching something on YouTube or Netflix. And guess what… I am not the first parent to do this!

Luckily for us, we were recently introduced to Charlie’s Colorforms City that launched back in March on Netflix. This 13-episode adventure series for preschoolers centers around the character Charlie (voiced by Jacob Soley) and his colorful cast of friends as they create fun stories using different shapes! Take off for adventures in outer space, the Wild West — and from right at home; the adventures are endless!

charlies colorforms city
Image credit: Netflix

About the Show

Once upon a time, there was…Charlie! He is inquisitive, impulsive, emotional, silly, and Charlie loves to create stories. In fact, he created Colorforms City out of his imagination so that he can tell the best stories possible… like a knight trying to save a balloon, or a cowboy/cowgirl duel, or Charlie’s epic quest to eat a pancake.

Kids at home will help propel these stories forward interactively, playing along and helping Charlie creatively solve story problems. Imagine you and your child as main characters in the show, and like any other main character, the story and episode cannot move forward without them. And Charlie’s other friends will help, too… or at least they’ll try. There are the twins—Violet the brave and Red the cautiously curious, Miss Weather the unpredictable, or should we say “fair-weather” friend, and the Silly Faces, who are just that, primarily faces and primarily silly.

Every story is an opportunity for Charlie to create. Charlie’s built Colorforms City on the Signature Black Background with the sticky magic of Colorforms. Charlie can peel, stick, scale and animate his world to move stories forward. From a madcap farce to make enough pancakes to feed all of his friends with a pancake machine, to an epic quest to deliver his forgotten birthday party invitations in a rocket ship-submarine, the stories get better, sillier and more creative with the magic of stick.

This series celebrates the stories kids love to tell and gives them the tools to enrich their stories and make them even better, through kid-friendly storey structure, creative problem-solving, emotional intelligence, and humour.

Charlies Colorforms City

Spark Creativity

We were sent some fun products to play with while watching the show. Of course, when Ryerson received his own Colorforms Book he was ecstatic! He had such a fun time playing and creating pieces that he cooked up in his imaginative mind. If you’re looking for a new interactive show for your preschooler or already have one that is a fan of Charlie and his gang, they’re going to love the Colorform Book. Wanting to get your kids to follow along and enjoy the activities Charlie is doing? Download Charlie’s Activity Book here!

If you weren’t already familiar with the Coloforms brand – Charlie’s Colorforms City is based on the classic toy brand Colorforms, a humour-based creativity brand that offers unique and tactile products and experiences that activate creative thinking, self-expression, and experimenting through story-based play. Founded back in 1951, the brand has stood the test of time, being named one of the Top 100 Toys of all time by TIME Magazine.

Ryerson has loved watching the show and playing along since we were introduced to Charlie’s Colorform City. I’ve noticed such a big improvement with his colours, shapes and numbers and it’s been such fun watching him grow and learn alongside this show. It goes to show you that not all TV shows are harmful and non-educational for kids. This series truly celebrates the stories kids love to tell and gives them the tools to enrich their stories and make them even better, through-kid friendly story structure, creative problem-solving, emotional intelligence, and humour.

Now, who else is ready to have their kids join Charlie in his next adventure?

Charlies Colorforms City

Don’t forget you can find Charlie’s Colorforms City on Netflix right now!

Disclosure: This post is in partnership with Charlie’s Colorforms City. As always, opinions are all my own. Products were provided and gifted in exchange for a review.

Social Media To My Social Circle: Bonds That Mean More Then A Like

We live in a society where we are constantly comparing ourselves to others and basing our self worth on the amount of likes and followers we have on social media. I’ll admit, I have fallen victim to this exact thing. Watching my number rise and decrease as though it actually has an impact on how I live my life… when in reality it means absolutely nothing.

I’ve been in the media and freelance world for almost a decade and jumping into the “blogger” world was something so foreign and unfamiliar to me. I had always written for pleasure, and kept a handful of journals/diaries. But I had never given it a ton of thought that my writing would be put on the internet for other’s to read. So how, and where did I start?

Networking!

The first thing I did was look on my social media channels and analyzed what I thought was “real” and “honest”. Don’t get me wrong, it’s hard to know who is genuine and authentic – but you’ll be able to catch on real quick. I’ve been ghosted by other bloggers and met some who have been less then who they portray themselves to be. I’m here to tell you they aren’t all like that. Especially the lovely lady you see in these pictures with me.

Heydy Lopez from Raising Jay & Abel was the first person I reached out to when wanting to take the leap into blogging… and guess what?! Over a year and a half later we’ve become extremely close friends. When we first met it was a brief meeting at Subway. I asked her a handful of questions (I took notes… laugh all you want), and we simply kept in touch after that.

Now you may be thinking, well that’s simple. Yes, and no. Fortunately for me, Heydy and I had a lot in common and were able to relate to each other far beyond a surface level friendship. She has always been someone I look up to and someone who genuinely cares about her family, friends, and the community around her; what you see is what you get!

Collaboration Over Competition

Over the past year, it’s definitely taken me some time to realize and know who exactly is in “my tribe”. The blogger world is cut throat and fierce. At the end of the day it’s nice to be able to rely on those with whom you trust and look up too. I have never felt like lesser of a person because my Instagram following is far more minimal then hers. She is the first one to give me advice, critique me, and offer support where I need it.

At the end of the day I am far more grateful for the friendships I have formed through blogging then anything else. Social media has its ups and downs but the connections that can be made are so valuable and some I’d never thought I’d make if I didn’t venture on this journey.

Photography by: Diana of Happy Bees Events & Studios 

{A big thank you to Hunni’s in Langley for providing mine and Heydy’s outfits!}

Disclaimer: All thoughts and opinions are solely my own. Head to my disclaimer page for more information.